For the satire-impaired, the quotes in the following piece are not real. One would have to be completely out of their gourd to ever make such unfounded, irrational statements, such as those made by this deputy editor for Business Insider. She claims to have suffered through the scenario* that keeps anti-vaccine advocates up at night after her first Gardasil shot, but never fear, she got back on the pro-vaccine wagon once she came to her greater good senses.
Her story falls into the category of “I’ll take ‘Things That Never Happened for $500, Alex,'” and is right along the lines of these other scenarios:
“I’m on pregnancy number five right now, and hoping this one sticks. I’ve been terribly unlucky in losing all four of my babies at 90 days gestation after getting my OB-recommended flu vaccine. They said it was just a coincidence and that there is no causal proof that receiving the flu vaccine in pregnancy causes spontaneous abortion. Do I care that the vaccine manufacturers themselves do not recommend vaccinating pregnant women and go so far as to say that the safety of doing so is not established? No, I do not. I trust my doctor. I don’t see a medical degree hanging on your wall.”
–Kayla, struggling mother-to-be
“I’m talk-texting this from my hospital bed, where I’ve been since Christmas. My wife is staunchly opposed to getting flu vaccines but she was out of town and my mother talked me into it. To be honest, I could see her point. Thousands of otherwise perfectly healthy young people die each year of the flu, right? I think I read that somewhere. Long story short, I got the vaccine without talking to my wife about it. My legs had quit working by the time I woke up the next morning, and by the end of the second day my arms didn’t work either. The doctors said that this Guillain Barre Syndrome would be temporary but instead of being discharged to go back to my life they’re now talking about long-term care. Will I get the flu vaccine when flu season comes around this year? You betcha I will. Healthcare facilities are dangerous places for catching disease and I need to protect myself from both the flu and Ebola. Besides, I’m pretty sure my wife is going to divorce me anyway so I don’t care what she thinks. In my book, the benefits of the flu vax outweigh the risks. The CDC says that GBS is rare, and no one gets struck by lightning twice.”
–Max, newly quadriplegic father of one
“When my first child, Sammy, had numerous grand mal seizures six days after his third dose of the pertussis vaccine I told myself, ‘Tap the brakes on that DTaP, Mama. Let’s figure this out.’ But truthfully, despite the FDA warning that prolonged seizures are a contraindication to the DTaP vaccine, there just isn’t any causal proof that the DTaP causes seizures. A year later, after much healing for Sammy, we went ahead with the MMR and chickenpox combo shot, and Sammy hasn’t said a word since. He spends most of his time spinning the wheels on his favorite dump truck or hanging over the arm of the sofa, and he was diagnosed with autism when he turned 4 earlier this year. I guess he was just born this way. I’m due to give birth to our second son any day now and we plan to fully vaccinate right on schedule. Why? Because anti-vaccine conspiracy theories have no place in our society. If I have to sacrifice a second child to prove my point, I’m going to do just that.”
–Carrie, soon-to-be mother of two
“We thought we were doing the right thing by delaying our daughter’s 2-month vaccines until she was 3 months old. That day she screamed a high pitched scream and fell into a deep sleep, which was kind of a relief because at least I could get some work done around the house. That night I gave her a bottle at 6pm and kissed her goodnight. In the morning she was gone. The medical examiner said it was SIDS and gave no other explanation for what killed my baby. Do I think it was the vaccines? No, I think she was going to die no matter what. If it was the vaccines the medical examiner would have said so, right? There is no causal proof. I’m pregnant with our “rainbow baby” now and really plan to do the right thing this time, and that means following our doctor’s advice to the letter. We’ll be vaccinating fully at 2 months old. Vaccines are the greatest invention of the 20th century.”
–Victoria, grieving mother
“When Gardasil came out I was one of the first women in line to receive it at the age of 21. My parents begged me not to be a guinea pig but I was an adult capable of making my own decisions about my sexual health. When I got the first shot I fainted right there on the table, but Merck says that’s normal. I think it’s just because us women are so emotional and prone to hysteria. It was probably all in my head. After the second shot I had a really hard time getting out of bed for a few months and dropped out of college for a semester, but the school nurse said there was no causal relationship to the debilitating joint pain and brain fog that I, and thousands of other young women, claim to have experienced. I got my third shot and I’m in a wheelchair pretty much most of the time now and had to drop out of school completely. Thankfully my parents let me move back into their house and my mom takes care of me full time. The real kicker is that getting Gardasil 4 caused me to develop one of the more dangerous strains of HPV that wasn’t covered by it. How did that happen when I haven’t even had sex in two years? Anyway, my doctor says that there’s a new Gardasil 9 on the market that I should get since I must be prone to high-risk HPV infection. If I can get my mom to drive me to the doctor I’m going to get that shot.”
–Erika, only child, living at home, probably forever
Quackenboss here. Are these stories offensive? Does it piss you off when people try to talk you out of trusting your gut instincts and attempt to invalidate your life experience? Are you tired of the pro-vaccine advocates, including the media, seeking out one-in-a-million nut jobs and parading them around as if they represent anyone but a minuscule percentage of the population? If you’re on Twitter be sure to let the Business Insider editor know what you think of her propaganda or you can leave a comment on the piece here.
* the “scenario” in this sense is limited to temporary achy joints and excludes death and/or permanent disability of ones child, so, not exactly anyone’s worst nightmare except the author’s.