Vaccines have saved millions of lives, and yet there is still a growing movement of people who would rather not let their children be vaccinated. Everyone from the World Health Organization to Roald Dahl to this woman who experienced negative effects of vaccines urge you to get them done for your own health, as well as those around you.
The problem for some children is that in most parts of the US, as a minor you need the consent of a parent or guardian in order to get vaccinated. So what do you do if you want to protect yourself from diseases, but your parents won't let you?
In a series of posts emblematic of the absurd times we're going through, children of ant-vaxxers are turning to Reddit for advice on how to protect themselves from potentially deadly diseases against the wishes of their own parents.
"I am writing because I am the 15-year-old son of an anti-vaccine parent. I have spent the last 4 years trying to convince my mother that vaccines are safe. I haven't succeeded," one boy wrote on a subreddit dedicated to legal advice. "So instead I am trying to research how to be vaccinated without my mother's consent."
It is by no means an isolated post.
Unfortunately, the answer is that in the US there isn't a whole lot you can do about the situation. From age 16 you are legally entitled to confidential doctor's appointments without your parents present, but in most states you have to be 18 to give your own consent for medical procedures. Without convincing your parents to give consent, there are very few ways you can legally get vaccinated, without taking the rather major step of getting yourself legally emancipated from your parents.
However, there are exceptions, as Vaxopedia.org point out. In the following 15 states, it is possible to give your own consent to vaccinations.
- South Carolina
- West Virginia