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Oh God - makes me want to weep - Catherine Bennett on MMR

(40 Posts)
sphil Sun 07-Jun-09 15:59:11

This may be covered elsewhere on MN but haven't dared look. In Observer today - yet another article slamming 'mummies' who don't vaccinate. Describes them as 4x4 driving, unthinking, Boden wearing idiots who don't care about anyone other than ourselves.

Don't know how she'd describe me - who did vaccinate up to first MMR but wish I hadn't.

Peachy Sun 07-Jun-09 16:21:57

It's funny Sphil, people who actually talk to us fore xample on here understand where we come from in the main (a few half wits don't- and by understand I do not mean agree, just empathise with our fears)- I presume those who bandy this MC crap about don't actually know anyone in our boat.

I've been in a right tiz over ds4 this week: the measles epidemic in wales is now only 30 minutes from us, he was due MMR last week, singles planned but we need to save. We thought he ahd chickenpox but the rash vanished and then he had a mouth infection so possibly a bacyterial thing instead- arrghhhh!
far from being unthinking half wits, we're simly struggling to make sense out of a lot of comflicting problems,a rmed with the knowledge that Wales is leading the way in compulsory jab threats (feckers). Measles won't count as there is currenly no single for mumps available so will be incomplete.

I did email teh parties last week to get virews from them, only green replied to say they are aginst compulsory vaccination, and they would want mroe research funded into MMR. guess who got my vote? grin

Jux Sun 07-Jun-09 16:26:03

I don't drive a 4x4, have never had Boden (wouldn't even recognise it if it hit me in the face), and I tend to think about things rather a lot. DD had the singles - after a huge amount of thought, discussion and research. Discussion included talks with my old tutor who researches in this field. Does that mean I was unthinking? These journos are ignorant and just trying to make a buck any way they can. As unethical as MPs and bankers imo. Not worth bothering about.

Peachy Sun 07-Jun-09 16:29:52

My car does look a 4X4 and was available as one I believe, I can't stick Boden though- I always wanted to find soemthing I liked there but rarely did (and when I did I chose not to take out the necessary mortgage wink)

Think rather a lot (too much), looking at training as a SW at some stage, definitely not a Mummy- decidedly WC upbringing.

nevergonnapost Sun 07-Jun-09 16:36:47

i love boden(sale) cant drive at all have a son with severe autism both sons had mmr jab neither of them got booster they are 16 and 17 now dont know what i would do if confronted with having to choose vacs these days cant see what the article is trying to achieve

sarah293 Sun 07-Jun-09 17:22:03

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sphil Sun 07-Jun-09 19:10:41

She mentions MN once and 'mummy websites' another time - does that mean she's on here i wonder?

mumslife Sun 07-Jun-09 20:44:21

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

LeonieSoSleepy Sun 07-Jun-09 22:26:25

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sarah293 Mon 08-Jun-09 08:09:12

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Davros Mon 08-Jun-09 08:28:05

All the panellists on Question Time last week were against compulsory vacs (or at least they said so). Fiona Phillips spoke up about a friend of hers who believes MMR caused her child's ASD and her friend is NOT an idiot and people like her are being denied and branded. FP was mostly ignored.
My view is that they tell us LIES and then expect us to put up or shut up. I actually don't believe that the MMR is as much to blame as some ASD groups would have us believe and unfortunatley I think the fanatics can do some damage. BUT I also have friends who are sane, clever, cautious people who are convinced their child's ASD was cauased or exacerabted by MMR and I believe them. What the "authorities", journos, people with an axe to grind don't understand is that "evidence" is not enough, they completely ignore the emotional aspect and that we are talking about our CHILDREN. DS was not affected by MMR or any other outside factors afaik but there is NO WAY I was going to pump DD with that stuff as she may well be at higher risk of developing ASD because of her brother. But, given that it didn't affect him, I did have her vaccinated very slowly, separately and cautiously and did blood test to prove immmunity rather than give MMR booster. I did that partlly to protect her and so that those who have real, genuine fears have less pressure or worries about not vaccinating. When will they wake up and realise that, firstly the whole Wakefield thing is being misreported and that no amount of evidence is going to persuade a responsible parent to put their child at risk, that may be choosing very to GIVE vaccinations or it may not, depending on the situation.

Davros Mon 08-Jun-09 08:50:50

BTW, I have got a 4x4 on Motability as it is the best and most practical vehicle for us and I have been in the Boden shop (and enjoyed it) but not bought anything grin

silverfrog Mon 08-Jun-09 09:12:52


I drive a 4x4 9again - did when dd1 was small, then didn't for a while, now do again, and funnily enough my 4x4 driving has coincided with MMR timings for both dds grin

the dds both wear Boden clothes (love the sales wink)

and I care more about my children than I do about other people's (not sure that this is soemthing to judge me for, tbh)

but unthinking? not one you could level at me, really.

I saw Question Time last week, too Davros, and was (blackly) amused by the silence that followed fiona's declaration. the only thing missing, as people averted their eyes and tried hard to ignore what she said was the mutterings of "witch"

LeonieSoSleepy Mon 08-Jun-09 09:48:39

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Peachy Mon 08-Jun-09 10:06:12

Davros- well said

I do ownder if ds3's asd would ahve been the same level as ds1 (as it would be without teh aggressioN) had w not given MMR, but as long asPaeds won't even record fears then we can't get the tests done taht could reassure parents if they came out the way Government bods insist they would

I guess that's what doesn't add up

Well done to FP- changed my impressions of her drastically

Peachy Mon 08-Jun-09 10:09:00

Riven ther is cuirrenlt no Mumps jab available so it would have to be MMR

Sending off for ds4's appointment today for measles: at 14 months the rest can waita bit, though would like rubella sooner than later (I'd have an older sibing if it weren't fo rrubella)

Mumps ds4 will get at ten (in form of MMR if I have to), not sure about ds3- he isn't going to be able to raise a child anyway, is there any point? or si that completely unethical a stance?

sarah293 Mon 08-Jun-09 10:52:03

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saintlydamemrsturnip Mon 08-Jun-09 11:13:23

Well exactly.

The cheering thing if you actually go to scientific conferences - especially ones including researchers from the States is that people are investigating MMR and other vaccines and their role. Like Davros I don't think MMR has caused huge numbers of cases, but many of the models are ones where a child could regress following various triggers, one of which might be a vaccine. So even those of us not directly affected had the potential to be iyswim. So away from the politics this work is being done. Parent funded bodies are some of the biggest autism research funders now and so the work is happening.

This Observer article by Nick Hornby is really old (2002) - but still valid. The extract below just nails it imo:

"They have done what this and preceding Governments have told them to do, which is to protect their apparently healthy kids against measles, mumps and rubella, and as a result, they feel, they have ended up with permanently disabled children - possibly incontinent, prone to screaming fits, irrational rages and sleeplessness, children with severely impaired or possibly non-existent communication skills... oh, and if you're really unlucky, a child with a debilitating and painful bowel disorder. First, they cannot get anyone to diagnose the condition (the average age of diagnosis is six); and then they cannot find the education they want (in some cases, they cannot find any education at all). If they do find the education, then they often have to take their local council to court to pay for it - the motto of our local authorities seems to be 'Stonewall 'Til They Sue'. And one of the very few people showing any interest in their child's agonising bowels has been forced to resign from his job, because his research does not fit comfortably with what the Government wants to hear. These parents have, in other words, been hung out to dry.

Last week, I listened with growing disbelief and rage as Yvette Cooper (an otherwise smart woman who appears, sadly, to have been given a vaccination that has turned her into a robot) accused anyone calling for single vaccines of 'undermining public confidence', as if it were anyone's job but her department's to restore it. The truth is, Yvette, that these parents who have been on Panorama and London Tonight and in every national newspaper saying that their children were made autistic by the MMR vaccine - the very parents, in other words, who are engendering this panic, and whose fears prompted Andrew Wakefield's research in the first place - are really not feeling very public-spirited right now."

sphil Mon 08-Jun-09 11:21:36

Davros - where did you get the blood test for immunity to MMR? Both the DCs had the first one, but not the booster.

DS2 was diagnosed at 3, using the DISCO. As part of the interview, the paed asked if I had any video footage of him as a baby and toddler that would help us to establish the start of his regression (though in truth it wasn't so much a regression as a stalling of skills and a very slow, gradual turning inwards). I trawled through the videos and pinpointed the start of these changes to when he was 16 months old. It was obvious on the videos in a way that it hadn't been at the time, because I was able to rewind and fast forward to compare, in a way that you just can't do in real life.

A few weeks later I was filling in a form for nursery and had to put down vax dates. I couldn't remember when DS2 had had his MMR - around 12 or 13 months I thought, but rang the surgery to check. Feb 2004, they said. DS2 was 16 months old. I remembered then that I'd kept putting it off because he'd had repeated chest infections.

I still remember the chilled feeling I got when the penny dropped. I don't for one minute think that the injection caused his autism - he had certain traits (very similar to his brother, who hovers on the edge of the spectrum) before that. But I do think that, together with the large doses of antibiotics and steroids he had as a baby, it triggered a more severe form than he might otherwise have had. And that's why neither of them have had the booster - I just can't risk it.

lingle Mon 08-Jun-09 11:26:21

DS2 is due a "pre-school booster". Would I be within my rights to ask for blood tests to establish whether he was already immune to the viruses he is due the "booster" for? I understand that the booster is there for those kids who didn't get immunity from the first jab. Is that right?

saintlydamemrsturnip Mon 08-Jun-09 11:27:32

I was shocked when I watched ds1's baby videos sphil. In the main because he was saying sounds he can't say now. E.g. 'sssss' with a snake and 'qua qua qua' in the bath with a duck.

His regression was similar but started with a viral infection. This seems to have been agreed by paeds etc. I have since found out that he has some of the signs of a mild mitochondrial dysfunction (asked the big name researcher and he agreed it is quite possible in his case) - and in cases of mitochndrial dysfunction the most common trigger is believed to be a virus- usually wild but sometimes vaccine.

So there's no way I'm going to give the others (or him) viruses they might otherwise not meet.

Oh and obviously I am more concerned about my next Boden shop that watching another child lose speech. hmm

saintlydamemrsturnip Mon 08-Jun-09 11:28:31

Oh and I checked back in his red book. And there's one entry listing examples of his words and giving the total number. Then the next entry says 'stopped speaking referred to SALT'.

lingle Mon 08-Jun-09 11:36:57

The only bit of the Wakefield stuff I followed was about him taking fees to act as an expert witness.
I've used expert witnesses myself in litigation and it would be very unusual for them not to take a fee. Certainly it's entirely appropriate to take a fee.
This made me feel there was a smear campaign going on .

sphil Mon 08-Jun-09 11:39:45

There's one bit of video that I haven't been able to watch again. It's of DS2 at 13 months imitating me jumping. He's looking at me intently, giggling and saying 'jump, jump ' very clearly with a proper 'p' sound on the end while trying to jump in that baby way where one foot leaves the ground before the other.

After 16 months he didn't do it again 'til he was 5. Even now some people can't understand him when he asks for 'jumps'. And although he can imitate now and I could probably take a similar video, there would be a different quality to his interaction - he was just doing it for the sheer joy of it then, and I didn't have to 'work' for a reaction from him.

Feel like sending the video to bloody Catherine Bennet tbh.

saintlydamemrsturnip Mon 08-Jun-09 11:46:23

He didn't get much in the way of legal fees anyway lingle as after various adjustments it came to a low rate in comparison to standard expert witness rates. There was a good examination of all that in a recent Autism File.

" I didn't have to 'work' for a reaction from him."

yes - this is the same in our baby videos. That work that the other person needs to put in is very clear in the videos I have analysed.

I should examine the difference really shouldn't I? Might do it with my own and see if it's feasible (although I can't think of anything more depressing tbh).

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