Negotiamini Media
Truth is Powerful

The danger of the new skepticism


Janie Oyakawa, 43, is a mother of six who lives just outside Dallas. In her home, she keeps a binder full of important documents from her family’s life, including a heavily annotated copy of Robert Sears’s The Vaccine Book: Making the Right Decision for Your Child .

“It’s like, here’s your birth certificate, and here’s when your mom was crazy for a few years,” she says. For a few years, Oyakawa, an occupational therapist, was an anti-vaxxer.

Oyakawa vaccinated her first four children according to the routine schedule. But the birth of her fourth child was traumatic; she felt the doctors and nurses didn’t listen to her. “That kick-started me being very skeptical of the medical establishment,” she says.

With her next child, Oyakawa opted for a home birth, with the help of a midwife. In the process, she began to meet other “crunchy” parents, she says, including those who were opposed to vaccines. For a time, the Oyakawas were uninsured. Slowly, and then all at once, Oyakawa stopped going to the pediatrician and stopped vaccinating her children, including her new baby.

“I had my sixth, and I feel bad looking back: She didn’t see a doctor until she was 1 year old,” […]

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