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Dear Dr. vybe: “Can a Cool Aunt Sneak Her Nephews in for Vaccinations?”


Dear Dr. vybe,


My sister is a bit of a hippie and well, she doesn’t vaccinate her kids. Yikes — I know. I love her, but we disagree on this controversial topic (and a few other things). Let’s just say that last time I tried to voice my opinion at our family dinner, the environment was more tense than usual. Usually the argument is about something less serious, like why mung bean sprouts are our main course.

So, I need advice: can I sneak my nephew and niece into urgent care to get their vaccines? With all these outbreaks happening around us, I fear they are now more susceptible to easily preventable diseases. What should I do?



A Concerned Aunt In Hiding



Dear Concerned Aunt In Hiding,


Hey — there’s nothing I love more than a plate full of mung bean sprouts for dinner, but I agree with you that vaccinations are crucial for the protection of children’s health. They can save them from serious disease, which is far beyond what a delicious dinner of veggies can do in your time of need (still, nutrition is important)!

But let’s get serious: although I sympathize and side with your reasoning, medical decisions for minor children are ultimately the responsibility of their custodial parent. You could open a conversation with your sister about the importance of vaccinations, the misconceptions surrounding them, and how they truly protect children from resurfacing diseases (such as the measles and mumps, both viral infections that have had recent outbreaks).

I would recommend to do it in a private and calm environment where you could explain your concerns without any additional pressure or influence from other family members. If your family is like mine, you probably would agree that more people typically ups the chance of unnecessary chaos.

So if your sister shamelessly brews her kombucha at home and fries up some tempeh in coconut oil for her kid’s lunches, then let her live her life. But if you’re worried for your family’s well-being, maybe it’s time to talk to her about the benefits of vaccinations for her kiddos. Once you start that conversation, we can help from there.

Here at vybe, we offer a wide range of services, whether it’s from administering vaccines or educating about them, our services are here for you, your crunchy sis, and your niece and nephew.



Suddenly Craving Some Granola