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How Can I Get Vaccinated If My Parents Are Anti-Vaccine?

What do kids do when their parents are anti-vaccine?

    Most teens do know what's in a vaccine and they want to get vaccinated and protected.
Most teens do know what’s in a vaccine and they want to get vaccinated and protected.

Whether or not they know it, they hide in the herd, at least until they understand what’s going on.

And then they often make a choice to either continue with their parents beliefs and remain unprotected or they get caught up.

Can Minors Consent to Getting Vaccinated?

Since getting vaccinated is a medical procedure, in most cases, you are still going to need the consent of a parent, guardian, or other adult family member if you are still a minor, which leaves out simply going out and getting caught up.

“State law is generally the controlling authority for whether parental consent is required or minors may consent for their own health care, including vaccination.”

Abigail English, JD on  the Legal Basis of Consent for Health Care and Vaccination for Adolescents

Are you still a minor?

“In most states, age 18 is the age of majority and thus, before treating a patient under the age of 18, consent must be obtained from the patient’s parent or legal guardian.”

Ann McNary, JD on Consent to Treatment of Minors

When it comes to immunizations and health care, in addition to what state you live in, that likely depends on whether or not you are an emancipated minor (court order), married minor, pregnant minor, or minor parent (situational emancipation). It also can depend on the type of health care you are seeking, like if a minor is seeking birth control or treatment for an STD.

“States Parties shall assure to the child who is capable of forming his or her own views the right to express those views freely in all matters affecting the child, the views of the child being given due weight in accordance with the age and maturity of the child.”

Convention on the Rights of the Child

Are you a mature minor? In some states, you can also give consent for medical procedures, including getting vaccinated, if you are a mature minor – someone who is old enough to understand and appreciate the consequences of a medical procedure.

In Washington, for example, minors may get immunizations without their parents consent after their health care provider evaluates the minor’s “age, intelligence, maturity, training, experience, economic independence or lack thereof, general conduct as an adult and freedom from the control of parents.”

Fourteen other states, including Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Delaware, Idaho, Illinois, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, and West Virginia have laws that allow mature minors to consent to general medical treatment either in all or a range of restricted circumstances.

How Can I Get Vaccinated If My Parents Are Anti-Vaccine?

Believe it or not, this question comes up a lot more than you can ever imagine.

If you are old enough to consent to getting vaccinated on your own, then you are all set and can start to get caught up on your immunizations.

If not, then your options are more limited, but might include:

  • talking to your parents about your concerns
  • asking someone, like your pediatrician, to be an advocate and talk to your parents with you
  • petitioning the court for emancipation ( you may get a whole lot more than the ability to get consent to get vaccinated though…)
  • waiting until you are old enough to consent to get vaccinated without your parent’s permission

While waiting is likely the easiest option, since that leaves you at risk for getting a vaccine-preventable disease, you should probably think about talking to your parents.

Why don’t they want you to get vaccinated? Do they have specific concerns about side effects? Do they have a religious objection?

Vaccines are safe and necessary. Hopefully you can help your parents understand that and they will allow you to get caught up on all of your vaccines.

More on Getting Vaccinated If Your Parents Are Anti-Vaccine

10 thoughts on “How Can I Get Vaccinated If My Parents Are Anti-Vaccine?”

  1. I’m really glad that the kids asking this aren’t as dumb as their parents are. Really gives me some faith in humanity back.

  2. Is there a chart somewhere listing state-by-state (perhaps including Canada as I hear this problem has been contracted over there as well) what the rules are for minors who want to not die from easily preventable diseases despite their parents wishes?

  3. What iS THE INGREDIENTS IN THESE VACCINES ? If you look up these ingredients they look really horrific and who wants this kind of nasty nasty toxin in thier body ! Years ago you only needed 4 or 5 the most from childhood to 18 now 50 vaccines before 18 .. that is a lot of toxins !

    1. “they look really horrific”

      I know, right! Like Dihydrogen Oxide specifically has “Di” in the name… and Sodium Chloride – Chlorine is used to kill things!!!

      1. yes it is used to kill things. it is used to weaken the virus to a point where it can’t hurt anyone. keyword “can’t hurt anyone.”

    2. do you know what else is toxic when you put it in your bloodstream? carrots. and carrots have never hurt any one. so if you want to keep believing the stupid crap you hear on twitter and facebook, you do that. but it’s not my fault when you catch measles and curse us for not telling you to get vaccinated. because we did. we’re doing it right now. so spread your views to one of your friends.

  4. There is something more dangerous than trying to get minors their rights to be vaccinated for sicknesses that they many never contract, that is the state taking away parental rights. Parents love their own kids more than the state ever can and will and have the right to determine using their own “..age, intelligence, maturity, training, experience.” Some, I believe few, will make mistakes but it is a far greater mistake to try to interfere with their parental rights. It is the parents right to determine if preventative medicines will be given to the children that have been given to them to raise. I do not want States taking away my parental rights nor do I want them creating programs and bureaucracy that interfere with other families. Although most vaccines are good and safe, others have been proven unsafe and still they are pushed by advocate groups. Ideas sometimes have far greater negative affects than viruses and we need to think through all of the ramifications. The caption on the picture is way to presumptuous to state, “Most teens do know what’s in a vaccine and they want to get vaccinated and protected.” Most adults do not know the chemical makeup of drugs, the political motivation behind pharmaceutical companies or the risks and side affects of the drugs. These decisions are complicated and complex and need to be left up to the parents of the children. These are the rights that the state should protect and promote. Giving information to the parents and teaching the benefits of the vaccines is far more helpful than teaching minors how to distrust their parents and take matters into their own hands.

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