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16 year old daughter is refusing to have HPV jab...

(39 Posts)
CaliforniaDreams Thu 01-Oct-09 12:32:24

My eldest DD was too old for the initial round of vaccinations and is now being included in the "catch-up" programme. She is refusing to have the jab as she thinks the vaccination has not been tested enough. She doesn't seem in the least bothered about getting cervical cancer! Obviously I respect her wishes in this respect but want her to be protected. I've been told that she can be included next year when her younger sister is due for the vaccination, but does anyone know how late you can leave it before it becomes less effective? And how can I persuade her to see sense - the Jade Goody argument cuts no ice with her, I'm afraid. sad

colditz Thu 01-Oct-09 12:34:52

I actually agree with her, and as she is old enough to get married, she's old enough to make her own medical decisions!

It HASN'T been tested enough. Why would she be bothered about getting cervical cancer, I'm 29, have a close friend who's being treated for cervical cancer, and it's not bothering me enough to make me seek the jab!

AMumInScotland Thu 01-Oct-09 12:42:14

I have an idea that it becomes less effective after you become sexually active, which is why they're trying to catch girls young for the main round of vaccinations. I think (just going on memory - I only have a DS so haven't looked into it much) that once you've been in contact with the HPV virus the effect of vaccination would be less, and since it's so prevalent, you're likely to come into contact once you start having sex.

crokky Thu 01-Oct-09 12:49:37

Condoms prevent the spread of HPV don't they?

Heathcliffscathy Thu 01-Oct-09 12:54:12

your daughter can prevent the risk of HPV infection through sensible sexual precautions. talk to her about this. if she understands this I think her decision is totally reasonable and I agree with it.

CaliforniaDreams Thu 01-Oct-09 12:58:09

AMIS - yes, I had an idea it had something to do about coming into contact with the virus itself, perhaps she hasn't grasped this yet. It's annoying though, I'm sure she would have taken it quite happily a couple of years ago when she was a year or so younger but still too old for the program in place at the time! I'm not sure though how much of her decision is based on a feeling of control, i.e. she is refusing it because she can! As far as I know her friends are all getting it done, but DD has never been one to follow the crowd. Perhaps this is one case where peer pressure is a good thing!

Colditz, I agree up to a point - I did say that I respected her decision - but I still have to sign the form on her behalf if she does decide to have the jab! I too had a friend with cervical cancer, who sadly died leaving two small children the same age as my youngest two DCs, so I have seen the heartache this can cause. And having also lost my mother to another type of cancer many years ago sadI just want to lessen the risk of losing my daughter to this dreadful disease.

CaliforniaDreams Thu 01-Oct-09 13:02:05

Crokky and sophably - sorry, cross posted - yes, if condoms prevent transmission of HPV I would indeed consider suggesting that to her, however I don't think she has any intention of becoming sexually active in the foreseeable future, in fact seems to have some real hangups about it which she isn't willing to talk about and I can't really probe...

titchy Thu 01-Oct-09 13:11:53

We all never had the vaccine don't forget. Also it DOESN'T stop her getting cervical cancer - it stops HPV which is ONE of the known causes of cervical cancer. There are others.

Yes condoms prevent the transmission of HPV, but point out to her that if she doesn't have it she will still have to have regular smear tests. Assuming of course they don't abolish those.....

clop Thu 01-Oct-09 13:24:05

How late can she leave it? As long as she has the jab BEFORE she starts having sex, it will help protect her. Not that I think the average person thinks "Ooh, am I up to date with my jabs?" before having sex, but that's the answer, anyway.

I think if it were my DD I'd be disappointed, too, but it's not worth making into a huge issue. Remind her every couple months or so that it's not too late, heck, even if she has started having sex now, it could still be of benefit.

If it's a control thing then I'd definitely encourage that ball to roll and roll; when she knows it's truly her choice she will stop being so resistant.

Saying 'Use a condom' is quite sensible, but condoms can break...

CaliforniaDreams Thu 01-Oct-09 13:34:19

"Not that I think the average person thinks "Ooh, am I up to date with my jabs?" before having sex," grin - same thing occurred to me! I'm wondering if part of her reasoning is that she has no intention of getting up to anything so doesn't need something that she perceives as risky. However, being realistic, I know that she could find herself in this situation so am anxious that she is aware of all the facts before losing her chance for the jab this year. According to the letter we had the vaccine is not available from GPs, so she will probably have to wait a whole year before the opportunity comes up again.

AMumInScotland Thu 01-Oct-09 13:47:37

If she has some hangups about sex in general, then she may be determined not to have a jab which is only connected with having sex - asserting her choice not just to not have the jab but also to not have sex.

TBH I'd let her choose that, but make sure she has a reasonable understanding that it would be better for her to have it before she has sexual relationships, without you suggesting that she may ever want to have sexual relationships at all!

Unless something major happens in the next 12 months, it doesn't sound like she's going to be in a situation where it matters. If she gets a boyfriend and/or seems to be changing her mind about the whole sex thing, then maybe have another talk about it at that point.

But it sounds like she's making a point about something important to her, and I don't think you should try to pressure her against that.

ConFuschias Thu 01-Oct-09 13:54:37

I would applaud your daughter for making a sensible decision about a vaccine which has indeed not been tested enough.

CaliforniaDreams Thu 01-Oct-09 15:01:12

By "hangups" I mean that she refers to sex quite casually (and imo shockingly) as "rape"!!!, DH and I are a bit concerned about this but not sure if it's standard teenage-speak, or if she really does consider normal consenting sexual behaviour as some kind of violation and is afraid of it....either way she could find herself in this situation before too long as is planning a trip to see a male "friend" at uni who loves her but she regards as simply a mate...so if she is going to start something I want her to be properly protected. All this makes the toddler stage seem like a picnic...

CaliforniaDreams Thu 01-Oct-09 15:04:10

...by "this situation" I meant the "normal" bit, not the "violation" bit iysiwm...

sandyballs Thu 01-Oct-09 15:07:54

You must have a chat with her, regardless of her embarrassment about the subject. I don't think it is normal teenage speak to talk about consenting sex as 'rape'. This would worry me too with my DDs, although they are only 8. Blimey, I have this all to come!

Agree about the lack of testing, I wouldn't make her have it.

sandyballs Thu 01-Oct-09 15:17:19

I've just been googling cervical cancer and it accounts for just 1% of total cancers in 2007 - 941 women died of it. Which is obviously 941 too many but why the sudden hysteria and vaccination programme as that is very low compared to other types of cancer? Very odd IMO. Prob all down to the pharmaceutical companies making mega bucks.

expatinscotland Thu 01-Oct-09 15:22:45

I wouldn't give that vaccine to my cat.

sandyballs Thu 01-Oct-09 15:24:17

Does anyone else find those statistics astounding, sorry to rant on, but I'm very surprised. There has to be more to this. So out of approx 30 million females in the UK, 941 died from cervical cancer and the government want to vaccination all our young daughters with a drug that has known side effects and hasn't been adequately tested shock.

ConFuschias Thu 01-Oct-09 15:32:24

and only guards against a couple of strains of HPV which may in rare circumstances lead to cervical cancer

Cammelia Thu 01-Oct-09 15:41:31

A 16 year old is old enough to decide for herself whether to have any medical interventions. Jade Goody, as you mention her in your op, admitted that she had many symptoms of cervical cancer but did not go to the doctor.

It is good to chat to your daughter about the symptoms, risks of cervical cancer, etc but imo the jab hasn't been tested enough and I won't be consenting to my 12 year old having it if offered at school.

Cammelia Thu 01-Oct-09 15:42:47

And, in any case, for our daughters to really be protected, they would need to be vaccinating boys as well.

alsmutko Thu 01-Oct-09 16:00:22

Of course it's been tested enough!
What hasn't happened is it being around for decades and everyone knows what to expect. The same goes for every immunisation, and indeed every new drug. There's no way round this. Either you have the jab and risk a possible side effect, or you don't and risk (a much much bigger risk) contracting the disease. You have to weigh out the pros and cons.
My dd (15) said she's definitely having it and the sad death of the young woman recently (who would appear to have a pre-existing condition which could have killed her at any time) hasn't put her off. So she's having the jab.

alsmutko Thu 01-Oct-09 16:02:10

Best for all the doubters to wait until it 'has been tested enough' - on my dd amongst others. Oh well.

AMumInScotland Thu 01-Oct-09 16:07:01

I do think you need to talk to her about why she refers to sex as rape. Unless she hangs around with some extreme feminists, I don't know why she'd use such an emotive term, and I think you need to understand whether there is some genuine fear there about the whole idea, and possibly whether she needs to talk to someone qualified to unpack that further.

I'd assumed "hangups" was more about it all being "yuck" rather than "rape".

stuffitllllama Thu 01-Oct-09 16:07:02

expat

pithy as chuff

quite right, sensible child

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