How do you deal with criticism?
I did vaccinate my first child fully, but I delayed vaccinations for my second child and my third child. My youngest has not been vaccinated at all. I have read books on vaccines, but I am constantly looking for more information. I found this book, The Parents Concise Guide to Childhood Vaccinations by Lauren Feder, and I think it looks amazing. I like that the author explains everything fully, and gives you tips for whether you choose to vaccinate or not.
What I am having difficulty with is the increasing amount of criticism and lack of support for my choices. I am still not sure when or if my younger children will receive vaccines, or which ones I will agree too. My paediatrician has been supportive and respects my decisions, but I find that some people in the office are not supportive and feel that my children need to be fully vaccinated.
How do you deal with criticism if you have delayed vaccines or if you have chosen not to vaccinate at all?
When your choice is not "mainstream"
My husband and I have chosen many alternatives to mainstream thinking with raising our children. Alternative medicine, homeschooling, homebirth, naturally increasing fertility vs. medical treatment, not vaccinating and more.
So for me, it has become all about educating myself in each of these areas so that I have full confidence in my decisions. If I think about my children and what is best for them, then it doesn't matter what others think. I need to do what's best for my children - I need to protect them and be their advocate. Knowledge is power.
If someone wants to "discuss" why I've chosen an alternate route, or they want to impart their opinion, I'll share some fabulous success story in an effort to help them see the positives. If they challenge that by saying that they've heard bad things about "whatever it is I'm doing", I'll share that I understand this, but after doing all the research (and I'll share how much I've done), my husband and I feel very strongly that this is the best decision for our family and it's worked well for us. They usually won't come back after that.
Sometimes it helps to realize that they are speaking from ignorance or from a point of emotion if they've seen a bad outcome. Educating youself to the point of feeling fully confident in your decisions is really important and helps you to face those who oppose your choices with a smile on your face and a song in your heart. You're doing what's best for your child and that's what's most important.
Keep up the good work! Your children will appreciate all of the time you put into researching what's best for them.