With all the news surrounding the Gardisil vaccine and associated uproar I feel like there is a subject that needs talked about. I know that this is a very touchy subject for most of you, but lets talk about our children’s sexual health. This is not necessarily the same thing as their sexual activity although the two may be related.
Being a healthcare professional we are thoroughly trained in patient privacy and who we can and cannot share patient information with. You can imagine my surprise when learning that a parent does not have a right to their child’s information as regarding sexual health from twelve years old up. At first it seems to go against everything right and true, it struck me as a slap in the face to parents everywhere. How can you be an effective parent when there is a potentially huge part of your child’s life that is off limits. Even though I wasn’t a parent at the time it took a while for me to digest the necessity of this law.
As hard as it may be to accept, these laws are in the BEST interest of children everywhere. Just because you may be a loving understanding parent whose children are comfortable talking to about even the touchiest subjects, don’t mistakenly think that all, or even most, parents can say the same. Also, if your children are NOT comfortable talking to you then the legal system is NOT to blame.
Now let’s talk about the vaccine specifically. This vaccine is less about promiscuity as it is about protection. You are not only protecting you children from what they may do but more importantly about what could be done to them. I have witnessed first hand the emotional wreckage left behind when a woman is dying from a cancer that was caused from a virus contracted from a rape. This is not a disease that kills quickly. It’s is a long and excruciating way to die. Were her attacker found I would find his crime tantamount to torture and murder. This is the potential eventuality you are protecting your daughters from.
Now I know none of us want to think of our babies as victims, we do everything in our power to protect them from all the evils in the world. But assuming that you will ALWAYS be there is not only unrealistic but also foolish. I feel that if you are unwilling to protect your child in this way, and your child has the emotional maturity to make this decision, then they should have every right to the vaccine with or without your consent or knowledge.
I welcome any and all comments as long as they are kept respectful.
Thanks for reading:)
*WARNING! STRONGLY WORDED PERSONAL OPINIONS TO FOLLOW!*
I refuse to devote an entire post to the superiority of breastfeeding over formula feeding. It’s been proven time after time by the scientific community. Every time you turn around some new study is published expounding on its benefits ranging from increased heightened IQ, to the reduction of childhood disease. These things are not opinions of mine, they are verified scientific fact. If somehow you’ve been living under a rock and have missed all that, then feel free to google it, that’s not what this rant is about. This is about how we, as a country, continue to over sexualize the human body. Even some so-called supporters consider nursing something that should only be done behind closed doors. Recently a male friend compared my breastfeeding photo (from an earlier post) to the “lewd” pictures sent out by a certain congressman of his “package”. The next time I have some random jerk say that if I am allowed to nurse in public he should be allowed to whip out his junk I may explode. If you lack the mental and emotional maturity to differentiate between nourishing a child and the sexually explicit, or worse yet between nursing and the elimination of waste then chances are you should keep your uneducated opinions unvoiced. You will only make an ass of yourself.
I am thankful that these people are few and far between because sadly, not all new moms have the self confidence to stand up to that kind of harassment. For these women the chiding they may receive (friendly or otherwise) may be enough to discourage them. To them I say, you are beautiful! What you are doing is beautiful! It is NOT lewd, unsanitary, or inappropriate. Those terms are more aptly applied to persons who would try to make you feel uncomfortable. It is your legal right and more than that it is filling the needs of your child at the most basic level in the most loving way possible!
Now that I have all that off my chest let just say the positive feedback I have received while nursing in public FAR outweighs any negative. There have been times when it has flustered someone and they didn’t seem to know how to act, but a smile is generally all that is needed to set them at ease. Remember, for the most part people will follow your lead, if you act as though it’s the most normal thing in the world they will follow suit. Also, every time you nurse at the mall, in the Dr.’s office, at a park, you are making it easier for the next mother to do the same thing.
Stay beautiful ladies:)
I was a breastfed baby, as such I thought that was how babies were fed. As a child I remember “nursing” my dolls. In my little brain it seemed obvious, babies drank their momma’s milk. When Momma kitty had a litter of kittens they drank kitty milk. Now I’m pretty sure we are considerably more advanced than momma K. I mean we have opposable thumbs, and therefore can operate the can opener (Momma K, not so much ). Not to mention century’s of human knowledge to draw on (again Momma K only had a couple of years of chasing mice and occasionally the dogs under her belt). So while we were a lot smarter than Momma K we always knew when it came to her kittens SHE was the expert. We would never have DREAMED of trying to replace her milk with something artificial. Why spend time and $$$ making a product that would in the end still be inferior to what she was already supplying free of charge?
Naturally I always assumed I would breastfeed my children, it wasn’t until late in my pregnancy that I realized that it wasn’t the “normal” thing to do. It never occurred to me that there would be classes and support groups and whole sites dedicated to helping moms who are breastfeeding, let alone that I would need any of those things. But there I was with my baby in hand and I learned really quick to use whatever resources were available. I read and read and read. I absorbed any information I could get about all the amazing things my body does for my child when he nurses. And I met (most virtually) some pretty amazing people. Eventually I was able to come full circle, my 5-year-old self had it right all along, babies drink their momma’s milk. I don’t need someone with more “advanced” training trying to replace my milk with some product of their own, or telling me that I won’t be able to do what I was built to do!
My hope is that one of these days we will have the same respect for ourselves as human mothers that we naturally give to other species. The same faith in our own bodies and their ability to provide for our babies.
I recognize that breastfeeding is a personal choice, and not one that all mothers make. I also know that formula has a very important roll in the health of babies who’s mothers are unable to breastfeed for whatever reason. Only you know what is right for you and your family and I am in no way criticizing the choices of other mothers. After all we all want the same thing, for our babies to be smart, happy, healthy, and for us to not lose our minds on the way:)