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Quill

Were you once anti-vax and now pro-vax? Or other changes of mind...

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I know this has to apply to others here besides me. I also once had a big stock of homeopathic “medicines” and a reference book I used religiously for choosing remedies. For several years, I had a speak-easy pediatrician who was very crunchy-friendly, allowed me to delay or refuse vaccines, believed in informed consent and was twice as likely to “prescribe” Elderberry for a virus as direct me to a pharmacy. (Matter of fact, the only Rx I ever remember filling through her was Amoxicillin in a couple of instances.) 

What changed your mind? Presumably, it was a slow change of mind and not a quick one. But I find it endlessly fascinating how people make decisions and change their minds on anything. I would love to hear how people have changed their minds on big public issues like vaccination. (If you changed in the other direction, you’re welcome to share that experience, too.)

 

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I was always a delayed vaxer, and i'd probably still try to delay if I were having kids.  When I say delay I mean start when kids are 6-9months rather than newborn - not delay for years. 

I also don't use Homeopathic remedies anymore... but I still use Elderberry. 

One area that is medical related where I have changed is intervention and testing starting early.  When my older kids were young, the homeschooling community was very much against testing and labeling kids.  I listened to that advice far too long.  I wish I hadn't waited so long to get my daughter tested and some intervention for her LD.  It negatively affected her self-esteem.

Edited by PrincessMommy
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I used to think homeschoolerse were nuts.  Now i've been homeschoolng for 11 years. LOL

I changed because I sent my kids to a preschool that was a couple of days a week and half days and I thought it would be awesome to have a regular school with these types of hours.   However, we sent our older children to school for a few years and it was just a constant struggle.  It seemed like school took over our lives and everything revolved around school and I didn't like that.  It felt invasive.  We found a hybrid school and did that for a year and then we homeschooled for several years before heading back to the hybrid school for high school.  It has been a much better fit for our family.  

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I guess I've changed my mind on a few issues.  Not always from the more extreme positions.  I changed my view pretty significantly on gender theory, or maybe I more realised it wasn't talking about what it had seemed to me to be talking about.  Or - how the argument was extended.  I remember thinking one fellow I talked with about it was kind of a crackpot, until the things he said would come out of it I actually started seeing people say!  

With vaccination, I was never an anti-vaxxer, but I was much more sympathetic.  I think there are few components.  The one thing is that basically, I approach empirical claims skeptically (not like the Skeptic movement which I think is not well-founded but in the more colloquial sense.) And I have a pretty strong sense of the limits of science and the ways in which it can be corrupted.

 It always seemed possible that there could e bad effects that might even have been covered up, or that company might push things with little reason. And at that time I had babies and toddlers, and I saw some much of that kid of thing in the medical world, in terms of medical practices around birth and young kids.  My personal experience was of being screwed over medically because of stupid practices in maternity care, and of not being listened to, even when the science was clearly on my side.  So I was somewhat primed to distrust what doctors told me about research that was more difficult for me to assess.

So on the one hand I could never discount the actual huge effect of vaccinations in the population, and I thought attempts to do so were pretty poor.  On the other hand, I could not ignore the extent to which there are real issues in pharmaceutical research.

But honestly, the main thing to me was that as time went on,  the researches became more and more clear that there was no evidence for links with autism, and then the Wakefield paper was shown to be bunk.  And after that, it seemed pretty clear to me that the attempts to pin all these negative health effects on vaccinations seemed to be mostly about a certain psychological process that I see in other parts of society as well - a kind of fear that tried to control the uncontrollable through an almost superstitious set of behaviours.

What gets me is I actually find myself arguing way more now with people who I think of as extreme vaxxers - who think any "officially" approved vaccination must be worthwhile and safe and anything that is science or STEM is true, and tech with save us from ourselves.  It tends to conflict with my view of the body which says to leave it alone to fight disease unless there is a very clear set of better outcomes to interfering. They seem to imagine there are no value decisions being made within these questions, there is just scinece which must be correct.

 

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We didn't vaxx back when the older bio kids were little because there weren't outbreaks.  We were never anti-vaxx, we were always in the camp (frankly, that gets ignored intentionally or unintentionally) that said if the likelihood of exposure was low we would hold off and we always said the kid could decide for themselves as adults. Youngest is an international adoptee and was always vaxxed according to schedule because it was required by her birth country. As we watched the numbers go up we decided to vaxx when they were early teens.  Middle couldn't be vaxxed at all for a while for medical reasons assessed by her ped and then an immunologist. When she was it was on a partial make up schedule and it did include one that's recommended for elderly people, but applied in her situation. So I don't think we really did change our minds on the issue because we always kept it a real possibility and we kept our eye on changing circumstances. Since sooo many people on those sides hyper compartmentalize in pro or anti camps I'm compelled to point out that it just isn't as simple as the media and FB warriors want to believe.

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While living in Denmark (2011-2016), I became a lot lot lot more liberal.

I was a free spirit in my youth, and then I had my more conservative phase. Now, I feel like I maybe I've got my old self back.

I was never anti-vax. Vaccines are awesome. I hate being sick 🙂

Edited by Penguin
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2 hours ago, Quill said:

Presumably, it was a slow change of mind and not a quick one.

 

I actually did change my mind in about 15 seconds.  I was never anti-vaccination, but I had a lot of ambivalence about vaccinating my babies and debated spacing the shots out, etc.  When my second son was 4 weeks old, though, I got a phone call from the dean of the school where DH taught -- and where we lived in faculty-student housing -- informing me that a student in our building had meningitis and were my children vaccinated yet?

It was one of those moments that suddenly crystallized everything.  I realized that I was exponentially more afraid of my children becoming seriously ill from one of these diseases than I was about the possible side effects from the vaccinations.  I immediately called the pediatrician; DS couldn't get the meningitis vaccine until 6 weeks, so I brought him in first thing the morning he turned 6 weeks, and all of my ambivalence was gone, forever.

(The student recovered, fortunately.)

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I was once provax and am no longer. 

 

I think there are way too many vaccinations, given too young, and too many at once. 

Edited by Janeway
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4 minutes ago, Penguin said:

After living in Denmark, I became a lot lot lot more liberal.

I was a free spirit in my youth, and then I had my more conservative phase. Now, I feel like I maybe I've got my old self back.

I was never anti-vax. Vaccines are awesome. I hate being sick 🙂

After reading the book about living in Denmark, I find I would really like to pick your brain about how living in Denmark may have shaped your views on certain things. Good topic for next lunch date! 

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3 minutes ago, Janeway said:

I was once provax and am no longer. 

Do you care to share how your mind changed? If not, then that’s fine.  I just think it’s interesting. 

Edited by Quill
Typo

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I used to be a staunch Republican, but now I’m more in the middle, and oftentimes even slip into being a Democrat. 

I used to think spanking was an unhappy, but necessary discipline tool.  I’m now completely, 100% against it.

I used to avoid the doctor and just wait the sickness out and never took OTC meds.  Now, at the first sign of something like congestion, I’m taking non-stop decongestants (and I do the same for the whole family.). I keep a close eye on sicknesses now and will go to the doctor at the right time instead of waiting weeks until we’re all very sick.

I used to think that I was a pretty smart person who had figured out the single best way to do most things.  But I learned that for the vast majority of situations, there are multiple “best” ways to do things.  And it’s really ok if someone does things differently.  

I used to think people were depressed because they didn’t train themselves to think happy thoughts.  I am so sorry for the people I tried to “cheer up” in the past.  Nowadays, I try to just listen and acknowledge that they feel bad without trying to fix it for them, because I know I can’t.

I used to think it was very important to tell everyone my thoughts in a conversation and jump right in, even cutting people off in my excitement.  I still do that from time to time, but I’m learning the great value in just sitting still and listening.  

I used to think that people who sinned were just bad Christians and completely weak and they needed to buck up.  But now I understand the complexities of life and how easy it is to make mistakes and how gracious God is when we fail.

I used to think that my DH and I should try to be just like each other, and when he didn’t want to change something, I would get upset.  Now I realize we’re two different people and it’s ok if he does things his way, or even does it the “wrong” way. 

 

Basically, if I met my 20-something self, I would have a hard time being around her.  I don’t much like who I was when I look back.  I was too  judgy and cocky about how I knew all the answers.

Edited by Garga
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1 minute ago, Quill said:

After reading the book about living in Denmark, I find I would really like to pick your brain about how living in Denmark may have shaped your views on certain things. Good topic for next lunch date! 

I would love that! Since it is on topic, here is an anecdote: 

We have moved a lot, and I was used to presenting my kids' vaccination records when enrolling them in school. I asked the administrator at the high school if I should give him a copy of my son's vax record, and he replied "Why? Is there something wrong with him that I need to know about?" The recommended vaccines also differ somewhat, which I find interesting.

 

 

 

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11 minutes ago, Quill said:

Do you care to share how your mind changed? If not, then that’s fine.  I just think it’s interesting. 

Just during the time I had children, more and more shots became available. More and more shots started to seem to be for things that I had never ever known anyone to get shots for. And I knew some people whose children died within 24 hrs of shots. I was there one night and it was a neighbor. She kept screaming and crying and the ambulance took her little baby girl away. We had a candlelight vigil. That did not change my mind, but later, as I met a few more parents who told me their baby died shortly after shots, and more and more shots would come on the market. I have a few family members working in DC/Virginia. Ok..they live in Virginia and work for the federal government so I only assume they are working in DC, one in congress and two for the CDC, and used to have a friend where I used to live who had worked for the FDA. Just everything started coming together where I no longer trust that just because the government approves the drug and puts it on a list, I should purchase the drug and put it in anyone's body. It may have been the Tamiflu incident that made me look at everything closer. But, really, pieces just kept falling on me and one day, I started putting them together and concluded that I no longer trust doing all these shots. The mere existance of VAERS is a biggie too. There are just so many parts and I guess it all came together for me one day. 

 

I am not anti-medication or doctor. I don't spank and I do go to the doctor and I did ask for drugs upon my arrival at labor and delivery (I asked for this in my first trimester, LOL, I wanted a standing order at the labor and delivery, guaranteed). But, every decision should be taken separately. It is not just two buckets....one bucket for those who are anti-all modern medication and pro spanking and the other bucket for fluid gender rallies and unschooling and whatever else. The first people I knew who did not do shots were not religious. They were heavy liberals. I met them in Le Leche League. 

 

Oh yeah..another post reminded me of this...another piece of the puzzle for me was seeing how different the vaccination records were from one country to the next. I think the final straw would be the guardasil. Did I ever tell this board about the time where the PA tried to convince my son who was 12 yrs old (give or take on the age, I do not recall exactly when that happened) that he could get HPV through kissing so he needs the shot, in case he ever wants to kiss a girl? ugh!

If vaccinations were so great, we would not need laws to force them on people and we would not need VAERS. We would allow open discussion among doctors and scientists about this stuff. 

Edited by Janeway
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I was never completely anti or pro vax.  I've always been pro informed parental consent (or refusal), still am.  I did go a bit soft and take the easy route as my kids approached 6yo, but ultimately I probably would have done the same if a little later.

I have also sucked it up on a few other things re parental rights and childhood independence.  Ultimately we parent the kids we have in the reality we live in.  Though I do have a quiet resentment in the back of my mind about things I had to do for stupid or arbitrary reasons.

But I've been a rebel against the arbitrary since I was a young kid.  🙂

My kids are both rebellious in their own way.  One will speak right out, the other will dig in.  I guess it's good that they are trying to think for themselves.  Unfortunately, they will have to suppress resentment like I did/do as they move through life.  Not sure if that's sad or just life.

Edited by SKL
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I used to be much more judgemental about other peoples parenting skills and figured that if a child was not well behaved it was down to a lack of good parenting.  Now that I have a very difficult child I have totally changed my views.

I used to be pro-vaccination.  After I saw my child go through a very serious vaccine reaction, I have changed my mind.  I am not anti-vaccine, but pro-vaccine choice and education on the risks of rare (but they do happen) side effects.

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7 minutes ago, Janeway said:

Just during the time I had children, more and more shots became available. More and more shots started to seem to be for things that I had never ever known anyone to get shots for. And I knew some people whose children died within 24 hrs of shots. I was there one night and it was a neighbor. She kept screaming and crying and the ambulance took her little baby girl away. We had a candlelight vigil. That did not change my mind, but later, as I met a few more parents who told me their baby died shortly after shots, and more and more shots would come on the market. I have a few family members working in DC/Virginia. Ok..they live in Virginia and work for the federal government so I only assume they are working in DC, one in congress and two for the CDC, and used to have a friend where I used to live who had worked for the FDA. Just everything started coming together where I no longer trust that just because the government approves the drug and puts it on a list, I should purchase the drug and put it in anyone's body. It may have been the Tamiflu incident that made me look at everything closer. But, really, pieces just kept falling on me and one day, I started putting them together and concluded that I no longer trust doing all these shots. The mere existance of VAERS is a biggie too. There are just so many parts and I guess it all came together for me one day. 

You really have known multiple people whose child died inexplicably within a day of being vaccinated? That’s pretty staggering. 

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Also - I originally wanted to delay group education (preschool in our case), but my attitude about it changed almost the instant I sent my kids.  So many benefits and at least for us, the negatives were very few.  For a while I thought I might homeschool, but again, b&m school has been mostly good for us so far.

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Just now, SKL said:

Also - I originally wanted to delay group education (preschool in our case), but my attitude about it changed almost the instant I sent my kids.  So many benefits and at least for us, the negatives were very few.  For a while I thought I might homeschool, but again, b&m school has been mostly good for us so far.

When I was first homeschooling, I confess I thought homeschooling was the absolute best choice for every child/family. *deep bloodroot blush* I thought people who said things like, “My kids and I clash too much/are not good for each other all day long” were lazy and making an excuse. 

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6 minutes ago, Quill said:

You really have known multiple people whose child died inexplicably within a day of being vaccinated? That’s pretty staggering. 

Yes....not personally all of them. One person, they visited my mom's work. This was her coworker. They had recently had a baby and the baby had the 2 month check up. They came by my mom's work to show off the baby. This was a long time ago, maybe 15 yrs ago? I can remember where she worked at the time, just not sure of the dates. Anyway, the baby had had shots that day. By the next day, they got notice the baby had died. No one said it was due to the shots (the support group was held at a hospital so I am unsure if they would have been allowed to say if they suspected it). There was another who was a neighbor. Also, I had a child die (not from shots) and was in a support group for it and met other parents whose children died. Most children from the group I was in had either been premature or had heart defects. But there were a few through the years who died within 24 hrs of shots, not premature or heart defects. The baby of the neighbor was 2 months old. So both where I very clearly remember the age, it was a 2 month check up. From the support group, I do not recall the ages or such exactly, I just recall them being there. 

Edited by Janeway
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6 minutes ago, Loowit said:

I used to be much more judgemental about other peoples parenting skills and figured that if a child was not well behaved it was down to a lack of good parenting.  Now that I have a very difficult child I have totally changed my views.

 

Same!  And I always cringe when people say "they learn that at home" re bullying / racist behavior etc.  My kids amaze me daily by doing things they NEVER see at home.  Even things I have told them many times not to do / to stand up against.  Really disheartening.

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22 minutes ago, Garga said:

I used to be a staunch Republican, but now I’m more in the middle, and oftentimes even slip into being a Democrat. 

I used to think spanking was an unhappy, but necessary discipline tool.  I’m now completely, 100% against it.

I used to avoid the doctor and just wait the sickness out and never took OTC meds.  Now, at the first sign of something like congestion, I’m taking non-stop decongestants (and I do the same for the whole family.). I keep a close eye on sicknesses now and will go to the doctor at the right time instead of waiting weeks until we’re all very sick.

I used to think that I was a pretty smart person who had figured out the single best way to do most things.  But I learned that for the vast majority of situations, there are multiple “best” ways to do things.  And it’s really ok if someone does things differently.  

I used to think people were depressed because they didn’t train themselves to think happy thoughts.  I am so sorry for the people I tried to “cheer up” in the past.  Nowadays, I try to just listen and acknowledge that they feel bad without trying to fix it for them, because I know I can’t.

I used to think it was very important to tell everyone my thoughts in a conversation and jump right in, even cutting people off in my excitement.  I still do that from time to time, but I’m learning the great value in just sitting still and listening.  

I used to think that people who sinned were just bad Christians and completely weak and they needed to buck up.  But now I understand the complexities of life and how easy it is to make mistakes and how gracious God is when we fail.

I used to think that my DH and I should try to be just like each other, and when he didn’t want to change something, I would get upset.  Now I realize we’re two different people and it’s ok if he does things his way, or even does it the “wrong” way. 

 

Basically, if I met my 20-something self, I would have a hard time being around her.  I don’t much like who I was when I look back.  I was too  judgy and cocky about how I knew all the answers.

 

Ah, spanking is one I haven't thought of in a while, as my kids aren't really the right ages for it to come up.  I went to some extent the other way - I once thought it was terrible, and now I tend to think that in itself it is fairly indifferent.

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13 minutes ago, Janeway said:

Yes....not personally all of them. One person, they visited my mom's work. This was her coworker. They had recently had a baby and the baby had the 2 month check up. They came by my mom's work to show off the baby. This was a long time ago, maybe 15 yrs ago? I can remember where she worked at the time, just not sure of the dates. Anyway, the baby had had shots that day. By the next day, they got notice the baby had died. No one said it was due to the shots (the support group was held at a hospital so I am unsure if they would have been allowed to say if they suspected it). There was another who was a neighbor. Also, I had a child die (not from shots) and was in a support group for it and met other parents whose children died. Most children from the group I was in had either been premature or had heart defects. But there were a few through the years who died within 24 hrs of shots, not premature or heart defects. The baby of the neighbor was 2 months old. So both where I very clearly remember the age, it was a 2 month check up. From the support group, I do not recall the ages or such exactly, I just recall them being there. 

I’m very sorry to hear all that. That’s terribly sad. 

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I don’t think I’ve ever swayed on the vaccine issue, homeopathy , or the benefits of essential oils.

A while ago our infowar-happy neighbor asked us if we EVER vaccinated ds. When I said yes,we’re not total nuts, he said, “but I thought you were homeschoolers.” I replied that we weren’t those crazy type homeschoolers that did it to protect children from the evil government. He then explains how his son and dil are now homeschooling, and how surprised he was to see that we didn’t research the poisons in vaccines. I had to bite my cheek really hard to say well at least we researched enough to know that pizzagate is fake, Obama’s an American, Hillary didn’t sell uranium, and Sandy Hook happened.

 

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I am not anti-vax. As a young adult I got all necessary shots for the international travel I was doing. I didn't think much of it then. But I am one of those people who has to know everything about everything about everything. So when I started having babies I wanted to know what was being injected and why. I don't like to blindly follow the rules. So I started reading and reading and reading. I am with Janeway and think that they give too many shots too soon. No big conspiracy, just that it's an easy money maker for pharm companies. Honestly, I don't think most people even know how many vaccines are on the recommended schedule these days. We hear about measles and polio so people get scared into doing "all the vaccines." I think people ought to consider their personal and family medical histories when making decisions about specific vaccines, but it seems doctors have a tendency to push this one-size-fits-all schedule regardless. I know enough vaccine-injured children and adults to know that the risk of injury is certainly not "one in a million." When it comes to vaccines, I think less is more.

I knew from all the reading I did more than a decade ago that there was research linking vaccines to autoimmune diseases. But I felt like I was doing the safe thing and delaying and spreading out vaccines. Then my 23-month-old baby developed a chronic autoimmune disease. I still do a lot of vaccine research and in the decade since we know even more about how vaccines effect the immune system and how they can induce autoimmunity and chronic illness. So I remain cautious about the risks vs benefits of so many vaccines.

ETA: I have a friend whose baby died after his 2-month vaccines. Obviously, at the time, she was pro-vax. But since then she's immersed herself in vaccine research and she could run circles around most people with what she knows. Not only about vaccine safety and what research has and has not been done, but about the diseases they are intended to prevent. In my experience, the most vocal and well-researched anti-vaxxers are actually "ex-vaxxers." In that they followed the recommended schedule and had a child suffer serious, permanent injury because of vaccines. And regardless of how people feel about the "benefits outweighing the risks" of vaccines, these mothers, who children have suffered so severely, deserve to be heard. I think there are better, safer ways to vaccinate against the most dangerous diseases that will still provide protection without causing so much harm to those children susceptible to vaccine injury.

Edited by DesertBlossom
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I grew up in Africa.  I saw all those diseases we vaccinate against.  I am strongly pro-vax.  I have never wavered on vaccines that have been around a long time.  I was, however, not quick to give gardasil I still haven't had my boys get it.  I think they released it too quickly and I am not sold that it doesn't harm. And I didn't think it was necessary.

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I was scared to get my oldest his shots. I was never crunchy but ran in those circles because I wanted to give birth without drugs, so I heard a lot about the poisons in vaccines and such.

The more I read the anti-vax "literature" and explored the arguments, the angrier I got because how much of it relied on fear mongering and simple coincidental correlation rather than real science. And word twisting and lack of awarness (or willful ignorance) of things like what package inserts and CDC warnings really mean. Or, citing their own publications or VAERS or something similar. It's just all so made up and sounds scary and parents are so vulnerable to it because who wants to cause pain to a baby? I also feel like people like Dr. Sears who try to legitimize the viewpoint with completely unscientific delayed schedules add fuel to the fire.

I am so thankful for vaccines and what they have done to stem infant and early childhood mortality. And I think most of the anti-vax movement does a huge disservice to people who truly can't vaccinate for legit medical reasons.

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I used to think anti-vax wasn't a big deal or problem even though I vaccinated. I knew tons of delayers or anti-vaxxers and still know some. Oy have I changed my mind on that.

I used to have a more libertarian outlook. Like, I was never a libertarian, but I used to be much more against government involvement as a basic lens on issues. Like, does the government really need to do this used to be one of my basic questions. Not so much anymore.

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I haven’t really changed on anything. I have always been a researcher. I have always been pretty moderate in all sorts of things. I view delayed vaccination as a moderate position. I have also always been a “you do you “ kind of a person. I think that my biggest change is that I don’t worry as much about my decisions. 

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I was always pro vaccines - not rah-rah pro, but soberish 'here's the risk profiles of both, one has better effects at a population level, time to get on with it' way. 

Generally, I am not much of a changer on big issues. Decriminalisation of drugs might be one - I was all for it as a young adult (not because I took drugs myself) but now I'm not so sure. Evidence still looks good but I feel less sure.

I understand and am more sympathetic to the feelings of individual pro-lifers than I used to be,,,but I haven't changed my mind there either.

Oh, headscarf bans - was once in favour of bans in schools....now I'm not.

Flipped on another controversial social issue, but mainly due to lazy lack of thought applied in the first instance. 

 

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I once thoroughly and slightly angrily believed that people that had many, multiple children were irresponsible.  After knowing many large families (through homeschooling and otherwise) and their varied reasons behind their family size, I’m much less angry at those individual families.  In fact, sometimes I will be the only person honestly happy for their next baby.  

Re: vaccinations, I am a staunch supporter of (most of) them yet selectively vaccinate on my own schedule. I guess I’m kind of a jerk?  

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When my oldest two were born (they are 16 and 14 now), I read a lot of anti-vaccination books/materials, and I had a lot of friends that never vaxxed. I wasn't 100% anti, but I did feel nervous about injecting so many vaccines into tiny infant bodies at one time. I was never afraid of autism, but I definitely think that pumping tiny immune systems full of multiple vaccinations wasn't something that was necessarily tested over time. I don't 100% trust the government to be looking out for the well being of MY child. Autoimmune diseases are on the rise and there has to be some or many sources in our environment that are contributing to that.  So we delayed, as in started more like 4 months and spaced them out one vaccine at a time for my older two.  When my oldest was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes at age 6, I felt really compelled to find out "why" this happened to her (which is really unknowable, by the way). And in some of my reading I ran across information linking the hib vaccine, which was the first one we gave her at 4 months, to an infection that can trigger diabetes. It sounds kind of crazy to me now, but after reading that I was adamant about not vaxxing our younger two children. So I didn't, even though my husband always wanted them to be vaxxed. I told him for years that if it was that important to him that he could take them to get it done, which of course he never did. 

At this point the younger two are 8 and 10 and this is the year that I decided to just vax them and get it over with.  I don't want to worry about them getting chicken pox in adolescence for one thing.  Plus, I do feel some responsibility to not contribute to the lowering rates of vaccination that are threatening our heard immunity.  I believe in parent choice, but I also believe it's important to keep these diseases from making a resurgence. So I guess I flip flopped back and forth. 😉 I will never authorize gardasil for any of my kids, though. Also, watching a 10 year old who was going next hide under a chair while her younger sister shrieked in pain from being held down by nurses and injected with two shots on each arm at the same time was just as traumatizing as holding down a squirming toddler, maybe more...

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1 hour ago, Jean in Newcastle said:

I haven’t really changed on anything. I have always been a researcher. I have always been pretty moderate in all sorts of things. I view delayed vaccination as a moderate position. I have also always been a “you do you “ kind of a person. I think that my biggest change is that I don’t worry as much about my decisions. 

This resonates with me.  I haven’t changed on much, one biggish topic.  But I think that’s because I default to the “consider the arguments, do the research, test it against worldview, decide whether it matters much anyway” position.  I am more staunch in my hills to die on, but I have very few of them, and it is rare I’d expend the energy to try and change someone’s mind.

The older I get the less thought I give to how others would evaluate my decisions, but the more consideration I spend on whether I am being consistent with my own values and goals, if that makes sense?

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43 minutes ago, StellaM said:

I was always pro vaccines - not rah-rah pro, but soberish 'here's the risk profiles of both, one has better effects at a population level, time to get on with it' way. 

Generally, I am not much of a changer on big issues. Decriminalisation of drugs might be one - I was all for it as a young adult (not because I took drugs myself) but now I'm not so sure. Evidence still looks good but I feel less sure.

I understand and am more sympathetic to the feelings of individual pro-lifers than I used to be,,,but I haven't changed my mind there either.

Oh, headscarf bans - was once in favour of bans in schools....now I'm not.

Flipped on another controversial social issue, but mainly due to lazy lack of thought applied in the first instance. 

 

 

I used to be pro decriminalisation too, and I think maybe I still am, but I will say having seen what's gone on here around legalisation of mj has made me less sure.  I wasn't really for legalisation, but the results so far have surprised me.

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27 minutes ago, Sara in AZ said:

When my oldest two were born (they are 16 and 14 now), I read a lot of anti-vaccination books/materials, and I had a lot of friends that never vaxxed. I wasn't 100% anti, but I did feel nervous about injecting so many vaccines into tiny infant bodies at one time. I was never afraid of autism, but I definitely think that pumping tiny immune systems full of multiple vaccinations wasn't something that was necessarily tested over time. I don't 100% trust the government to be looking out for the well being of MY child. Autoimmune diseases are on the rise and there has to be some or many sources in our environment that are contributing to that.  So we delayed, as in started more like 4 months and spaced them out one vaccine at a time for my older two.  When my oldest was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes at age 6, I felt really compelled to find out "why" this happened to her (which is really unknowable, by the way). And in some of my reading I ran across information linking the hib vaccine, which was the first one we gave her at 4 months, to an infection that can trigger diabetes. It sounds kind of crazy to me now, but after reading that I was adamant about not vaxxing our younger two children. So I didn't, even though my husband always wanted them to be vaxxed. I told him for years that if it was that important to him that he could take them to get it done, which of course he never did. 

At this point the younger two are 8 and 10 and this is the year that I decided to just vax them and get it over with.  I don't want to worry about them getting chicken pox in adolescence for one thing.  Plus, I do feel some responsibility to not contribute to the lowering rates of vaccination that are threatening our heard immunity.  I believe in parent choice, but I also believe it's important to keep these diseases from making a resurgence. So I guess I flip flopped back and forth. 😉 I will never authorize gardasil for any of my kids, though. Also, watching a 10 year old who was going next hide under a chair while her younger sister shrieked in pain from being held down by nurses and injected with two shots on each arm at the same time was just as traumatizing as holding down a squirming toddler, maybe more...

Well....to be fair, though, older kids can act like wild animals over receiving shots. It doesn’t matter what shot it is. Sometimes parents have done a poor job of helping their child face medically necessary yet very unpleasant procedures. I would personally not be in favor of doing shots by man-handling the kid, but I have also seen kids behaving outrageously badly in doctor’s offices. So I feel for the doctors in such a case. 

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49 minutes ago, Sara in AZ said:

When my oldest two were born (they are 16 and 14 now), I read a lot of anti-vaccination books/materials, and I had a lot of friends that never vaxxed. I wasn't 100% anti, but I did feel nervous about injecting so many vaccines into tiny infant bodies at one time. I was never afraid of autism, but I definitely think that pumping tiny immune systems full of multiple vaccinations wasn't something that was necessarily tested over time. I don't 100% trust the government to be looking out for the well being of MY child. Autoimmune diseases are on the rise and there has to be some or many sources in our environment that are contributing to that.  So we delayed, as in started more like 4 months and spaced them out one vaccine at a time for my older two.  When my oldest was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes at age 6, I felt really compelled to find out "why" this happened to her (which is really unknowable, by the way). And in some of my reading I ran across information linking the hib vaccine, which was the first one we gave her at 4 months, to an infection that can trigger diabetes. It sounds kind of crazy to me now, but after reading that I was adamant about not vaxxing our younger two children. So I didn't, even though my husband always wanted them to be vaxxed. I told him for years that if it was that important to him that he could take them to get it done, which of course he never did. 

At this point the younger two are 8 and 10 and this is the year that I decided to just vax them and get it over with.  I don't want to worry about them getting chicken pox in adolescence for one thing.  Plus, I do feel some responsibility to not contribute to the lowering rates of vaccination that are threatening our heard immunity.  I believe in parent choice, but I also believe it's important to keep these diseases from making a resurgence. So I guess I flip flopped back and forth. 😉 I will never authorize gardasil for any of my kids, though. Also, watching a 10 year old who was going next hide under a chair while her younger sister shrieked in pain from being held down by nurses and injected with two shots on each arm at the same time was just as traumatizing as holding down a squirming toddler, maybe more...

 

From watching my son, I think 10 year old shots are just pretty bad. Every other year he did fine but the shots that year really bothered him.

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49 minutes ago, Quill said:

Well....to be fair, though, older kids can act like wild animals over receiving shots. It doesn’t matter what shot it is. Sometimes parents have done a poor job of helping their child face medically necessary yet very unpleasant procedures. I would personally not be in favor of doing shots by man-handling the kid, but I have also seen kids behaving outrageously badly in doctor’s offices. So I feel for the doctors in such a case. 

The only time my kids made any fuss over shots was when they were 5/6 and the gruff nurse said "hold her down."  There was no need to hold anyone down.  They always stoically endured prior shots with no holding down.  But "hold her down" scared my youngest.  😕  Then at age 11 she was nervous as heck, but she held still and kept quiet for the shot.  (I'm glad it will be a while before anyone needs another though!)

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This isn't so much me, because I am against it now, but I don't think I had an opinion about it before doing the research-- but when I was pregnant with my first DS we started researching circumcision. DH was initially adamantly for it, but after watching a video of it being done, said he could never do that.  He is actually quite angry/upset about his own circumcision and knowing what he does now, never would have made that choice for himself. 

Edited by DesertBlossom
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1 hour ago, SKL said:

The only time my kids made any fuss over shots was when they were 5/6 and the gruff nurse said "hold her down."  There was no need to hold anyone down.  They always stoically endured prior shots with no holding down.  But "hold her down" scared my youngest.  😕  Then at age 11 she was nervous as heck, but she held still and kept quiet for the shot.  (I'm glad it will be a while before anyone needs another though!)

 

Our pediatrics practice had one of those nurses for a short time as well. It was right at the 5/6 year old shot time too. DS is the type to watch the shots administered because he finds it fascinating and that was the only appt. he was upset. Ugh, I'm sorry!

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I knew a couple people who had sleep trained their babies and then I picked up Babywise at a yard sale.  I was all set to go that route and remember worrying about how to explain to the inlaws when they came to visit that baby would have to be in his bassinet during naps, and that he would be on a strict schedule, etc. 

And then he was born 5 weeks early and spent 12 days in the NICU. I wanted to hold him all day. The nurses would tell me after a while he needed to go back in his bassinet "because he was tired." That still makes me grumpy to think about because that's a load of B.S. He was nearly 6 pounds so we were not dealing with any micro-preemie issues. I just wanted to hold him.

When we finally got him home I spent the rest of my maternity leave holding him as much as I could. I have never sleep trained my babies since (just follow natural sleep patterns) and shudder to think I ever thought a baby could be held too much. 

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I was prochoice. Now, I am not. I think maybe it is okay to be legal when something is wrong with the baby or something wrong with the mom (physically wrong with the mom that is life threatening, not just a doctor willing to sign off that she is depressed), but not in cases of rape or just don't feel like having the baby. I think it should never be legal after 20 weeks. It should only be allowed for the mom to be induced and the baby to be given all care needed, and this would only be when something is wrong with the mom where she must deliver early to survive. I am very prolife for 99% of the situations and I think anyone who goes against these laws should be criminally charged with the death of the baby. 

 

I think smoking should be illegal. It makes no sense that abortion is legal, smoking around children is legal, and then...not vaccination is illegal in some areas. I also do not get why prostitution is illegal. Abortion is supposed to be legal because of a woman's right to control her own body, but then, prostitution is not legal? Our laws just do not match up.

Drugs..I think they should be illegal, even marajuana. Whenever I have had to deal with people who use drugs, I have dealt with people who do not have the mental stability to care for themselves. They steal and cannot even hold down a simple day job. The situation is just not good. Using drugs is basically inflicting oneself with a mental illness. Continued drug use leads to a person being too mentally disabled to care for themselves. It raises possibility of laws being broken by the ones using drugs. I so not support legallizing drug use.

 

So when I look at law saying a newborn baby must have a shot like Hep B at birth..I just feel shocked. Why? Why would the government be so concerned with the baby's health supposedly that there would be laws and regulation requiring injecting the drugs in to an infant like that, but no laws to protect the child from the severe damage second hand smoke can cause, or from being exposed to or raise by people who are drug users or from the crimes that result from the drug abuse. Or the drunk drivers who are allowed to go back out on the street over and over again until they kill a family....our laws just do not line up with each other. And in the absence of laws to protect children in so many areas, why the vaccination stuff?

 

I am passed where I needed to be in bed so many I will wake up and find this post incoherent. Hopefully, I managed to express myself well.

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@Janeway, though I disagree with some of your positions, I agree that a great deal of law is inconsistant. I think, though, that part of the reason is because laws are dynamic and go into effect bit by bit over time. Sometimes, it is difficult to change something in a massive way just because we “came to our senses.” Prohibiton (of alcohol) was a good example of why that does not work. 

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Another thing that made me dismayed when I discovered what it actually was: homeopathy. I am not talking about herbs or oils or alternative meds. I am talking about homeopathy, which is literally water or sugar pills that contain NONE of what is actually supposed to be the effective ingredient. The mechanism is supposed to be that the water or tablet is charged with the substance, but the more that it is diluted, the more powerful it becomes. So much nonsense. And I know people who find out what it is and still insists that it works. I really can't believe homeopathic Zicam is allowed to be sold right next to actual zinc lozenges. It irritates me to no end, maybe because I bought some of it before I knew.

Add in that homeopathy is often used interchangeably with alternative or natural medicine and a lot people don't even know it's literally only water and will defend it the same as taking ginger for nausea or something.

If there's one positive thing I can say about essential oils, it's that at least the stuff is actually in the bottle!!

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I was always a person who questioned and researched everything. It bothered me that when I was younger, my mother would get us every vaccine suggested.  Even when I would get sick from it.  Then as an adult, I reacted badly to a normal, standard vaccine needed for work.  After that, I tend to delay a bit and spaced out a few with the kids.  I have friends who worked in research and will not give certain vaccines so I do listen but research what they say.  Now my kids have had most of them ( no flu or gardisil) but after discovering that I have an autoimmune disorder and so does DS, I am very happy with the way I did it.  I trust our pediatrician who is a gift to medicine.  He even suggested recently that we delay DS meningococcal shot a he is not leaving for college for awhile. 

Now for an interesting turn of events- my pro everything vaccine mother has turned into anti vaccines and they cause autism.  I have explained genetics and look at the dang relatives so many times.... 

I tend to lean more towards natural medicine due to reactions.  Not essential oils but other stuff.  Elderberry is wonderful. Turmeric has been a huge help with my health.  

Edited by itsheresomewhere
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I didn’t even know vaccines were controversial until a few months after I had my first. I did tons of reading about them and became staunching pro vaccine-to the point that I limited my kids contact with unvaccinated people. I guess now I have swung a little to being less judgmental about it and I no longer worry about my kids exposure to unvaccinated people, but I definitely still think barring a real medical reason, the benefits of vaccinations greatly outweigh the risks. 

 

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I used to roll my eyes at herbs, supplements, oils and such. Now when something's amiss I turn to those thing first and then turn to conventional meds when stronger treatment is needed. I can trace my change to two circumstances.

The first was when an elderly friend's arthritis medication destroyed her liver and she had to go on dialysis indefinitely. She went from active and spunky to very frail. I remember feeling so frustrated that the very thing she used to help her quality of life actually stole from it at the back end. Like robbing  Peter to pay Paul. I came to the conclusion that maybe the medication was worth it because it gave her all those years of functionality but if arthritis could be managed without hurting the liver through more holistic means wasn't it at least worth exploring? 

The next circumstance happened because I was on a class c medication to help manage a hormonal imbalance when I got pregnant. I was completely fine absorbing the risk myself but there was no chance I was going to expose that risk to my baby. So my choices were to suffer or explore milder means to manage my symptoms. I chose to explore and I have been able to manage my symptoms to my satisfaction since. 

After my stance had already changed it was confirmed with my little one. I had always treated her illnesses holistically until she got a nasty ear infection and the herbs and oils weren't cutting it. So I took her to the doctor who put her on amoxicillin. The amoxicillin did a great job at wiping out the infection but it also left her with a yeast infection for 6 months. Was it worth it? Absolutely, I was grateful for it but I was just as grateful that all of her previous illnesses were able to be resolved without throwing her body out of homeostasis.

Edited by Learning fun

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Re vaccines: I had my first child around the time that Sears' Vaccine Book was published, so spacing vaccines and worrying about the aluminum load in the standard schedule was all the rage. I consider myself an intelligent person and an excellent researcher, but let's be honest, as an attorney, my background in immunology was just not there. I followed Sears' alternate schedule with my first and thankfully, I live in the first world and benefit from generally good herd immunity, so he survived. Fast forward to my second, more research had been done to address Sears' concerns and to ensure the safety of the standard schedule. I also had my second in Mexico, where they take their vaccines very seriously. He was vaxed on schedule (for free, I might add, thanks to the Mexican healthcare system). I am now in nursing school, have had far more education in immunology, and consider myself a vaccine advocate, as a matter of public health.

Re the death penalty: I was strongly in support of the death penalty prior to law school. After becoming a lawyer, and seeing the disparate effects of poverty, untreated mental illness, and systemic racism in our criminal justice system, there is no way in good conscience that I could support the death penalty in our country (and I believe it to be unconstitutional). 

Re affirmative action: I condemned AA policies in my youth, believing them to inadvertently hurt the people they were trying to help (for a variety of reasons). On balance, I now believe that the benefits of AA programs strongly outweigh the drawbacks (again, for a variety of reasons).

Re politics: I was a staunch libertarian in my youth. Like Farrar, my positions have softened over time. I'm now not completely sold that private enterprise is going to be the salvation to every problem and see a much larger role for a responsive government to play. I'm still a government skeptic, in many ways, so I have a hard time finding the right balance philosophically and in practice (in the voting booth). Even though neither party was really a fit, I was a registered Republican my entire life. But, I became so disgusted during the last election that I reregistered and voted as a Dem for the first time.  

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2 hours ago, EmseB said:

Another thing that made me dismayed when I discovered what it actually was: homeopathy. I am not talking about herbs or oils or alternative meds. I am talking about homeopathy, which is literally water or sugar pills that contain NONE of what is actually supposed to be the effective ingredient. The mechanism is supposed to be that the water or tablet is charged with the substance, but the more that it is diluted, the more powerful it becomes. So much nonsense. And I know people who find out what it is and still insists that it works. I really can't believe homeopathic Zicam is allowed to be sold right next to actual zinc lozenges. It irritates me to no end, maybe because I bought some of it before I knew.

Add in that homeopathy is often used interchangeably with alternative or natural medicine and a lot people don't even know it's literally only water and will defend it the same as taking ginger for nausea or something.

If there's one positive thing I can say about essential oils, it's that at least the stuff is actually in the bottle!!

 

Oh yeah -  I used to be completely new age - this was before I had kids - no antibiotics, homeopathy only.

I have no idea why.  I remember arguing with my sister and telling her she should only take homeopathics for her sinus infections.

I'd completely forgotten that till I read your comment. What a dope I was.

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7 hours ago, EmseB said:

Another thing that made me dismayed when I discovered what it actually was: homeopathy. I am not talking about herbs or oils or alternative meds. I am talking about homeopathy, which is literally water or sugar pills that contain NONE of what is actually supposed to be the effective ingredient. The mechanism is supposed to be that the water or tablet is charged with the substance, but the more that it is diluted, the more powerful it becomes. So much nonsense. And I know people who find out what it is and still insists that it works. I really can't believe homeopathic Zicam is allowed to be sold right next to actual zinc lozenges. It irritates me to no end, maybe because I bought some of it before I knew.

Add in that homeopathy is often used interchangeably with alternative or natural medicine and a lot people don't even know it's literally only water and will defend it the same as taking ginger for nausea or something.

If there's one positive thing I can say about essential oils, it's that at least the stuff is actually in the bottle!!

Same here. I had a comprehensive homeopathy kit and a book I referred to. What made me begin to waiver on homeopathy was the procedures for choosing the “right” remedy. There were so many weird details - “Is the subject’s face hot on the right side? Does the subject feel worse from a cold draft? Is the subject fearful?” - that I found myself (stupidly) dithering. “If the face is hot, Belladonna. But fearfulness is Aconite. So which do I choose?” Then, I read somewhere that individuals have a “ “sympathy” with certain remedies. So, if you are a Belladonna kind of gal, Aconite isn’t going to help. That was what made me start the think homeopathy was bunk. 

There were a couple of times when I felt I had chosen well with homeopathy and my kids got over viruses very quickly. But there were also many instances when homeopathy was (or course) doing nothing and I could not believe it was because I had not chosen the propper remedy. 

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10 minutes ago, Quill said:

Same here. I had a comprehensive homeopathy kit and a book I referred to. What made me begin to waiver on homeopathy was the procedures for choosing the “right” remedy. There were so many weird details - “Is the subject’s face hot on the right side? Does the subject feel worse from a cold draft? Is the subject fearful?” - that I found myself (stupidly) dithering. “If the face is hot, Belladonna. But fearfulness is Aconite. So which do I choose?” Then, I read somewhere that individuals have a “ “sympathy” with certain remedies. So, if you are a Belladonna kind of gal, Aconite isn’t going to help. That was what made me start the think homeopathy was bunk. 

There were a couple of times when I felt I had chosen well with homeopathy and my kids got over viruses very quickly. But there were also many instances when homeopathy was (or course) doing nothing and I could not believe it was because I had not chosen the propper remedy. 

 

I don't think I even gave it that much thought. 

Those were the days of crystals as well. Oy!

My kids can't believe that I was once a hippy 🙂

 

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I was a young-earth, literal 6-day creationist who scoffed at evolution. I'm now an old-earth creationist who is more open to considering the various ways in which God may have created the beautiful array of life in our world. I am in awe regardless of how He did it.

I was a pro-military, flag-waving Republican. I'm now a peacenik hippie who won't say the Pledge and usually can't find anyone to vote for in good conscience.

I didn't know or believe that racism was alive and well in the U.S. I was racist, as well, even though I would have insisted I wasn't. How stupid I was.

I thought that if people were poor or on welfare, they might just be lazy. If they were homeless, it was probably their choice and they should get a job. How wrong I was. I am ashamed. 😞 

I was an advocate for small government, but now I think socialized medicine may actually be a good answer to all this mess.

I made jokes about vegetarians and though I "loved animals," I never thought much about animal welfare. I'm a vegetarian and would like to see personhood status for primates, aquatic mammals, and elephants, at the very least.

Most changes came about largely due to the gentle, patient, non-argumentative influence of my wise husband. He also influenced my parents, who in turn re-influenced me as an adult.

The Hive has broadened my thinking and given me many different, intelligent, thoughtful viewpoints to consider.

The changes in my views on animals have come about due to my own reading and research and from living with non-human beings who clearly have souls. 🙂 

ETA: I didn't address the main question. My position on vaccination has probably become more moderate over time. Vaccinations are a wonderful tool and I am beyond thankful for them. On the other hand, they can and do cause serious harm at times. They should be used carefully, thoughtfully, and in accordance with solid research.  

And, of course, I have to say that my pro-life views have only strengthened over the years, with more thought and more research. I hope I am more consistent in them than I was in my youth. I am still against abortion without exception.

Edited by MercyA
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