This has been weighing heavily on my mind as I know people in the unvaccinated camp that would absolutely get the vaccine if it were being advised by their physician, but for serious underlying conditions, they are being advised to not get vaccinated.
This is not a debate on politics or anti-vaxers or human rights... This is a blog about HUMAN DECENCY.
It saddens me to see hate posts on social media targeting the unvaccinated individuals as if they are an enemy to society. It is my hope that people will read this and take a breath and realize that not every unvaccinated individual is an extremist. Some have medical reasons to not get the Covid-19 vaccine.
So why bring this up? Because MENTAL HEALTH, that's why. It is unfair for the people in the "not vaccinated camp due to medical reasons" to be lumped into the "extremist camp". Consider being in a vulnerable state due to medical condition(s) and then being blasted for not getting a vaccine that you are not in a position to get. Consider hearing anti-vax rhetoric on the news, in social media, hearing your favorite celebs breaking it off with friends and neighbors due to their "unvaccinated status" and then to see this effect worm it's way into your personal life as people close to you start JUDGING you for what they believe to be your choice to not be vaccinated; all the while, it's not your choice, it's medically necessary... Imagine the toll this must take on one's mental health.
As a society, we need to be more aware of our differences, of our different needs. Yes, we all want to be safe from a fast-spreading, mutating virus. Yes, we all deserve to be protected from the virus as much as possible. Yes, we have the right to choose in many ways, under varying circumstances. BUT, some are not so fortunate and are left with their own anxieties about contracting Covid, they don't need the added pressure from the media, celebs, friends and families that they are believed to be making a choice that will have grave consequences to society.
For these "high risk" people, getting the vaccine could be a grave choice. Some of you may be thinking, "Well, they will be spreaders of the virus..."
Here's a few things you may not know about the "immuno-compromised camp":
already really good at social distancing
experts at handwashing
most avoid crowds
some have been wearing masks prior to Covid
actively pursuing health and avoidance of germs
For the sake of MENTAL HEALTH, for the sake of the most vulnerable in our society, consider the harm of spreading the message that all of the unvaccinated are wrong.
Please take the time to listen, to understand, to communicate with those that are not vaccinated. You may be surprised by their reasons. Let's help each other. Let's support each other. Let's respect each other. Times are stressful enough. Let's not add to the stress.
Stress inhibits our immune health by driving up cortisol and other stress hormones. If you don't do it for them, do it for you.
The author of this article has, in the past, received necessary vaccines and at times, has declined vaccines. At the time of this writing, she has been medically advised to hold off on the Covid vaccines. She is neither pro-vaccine or anti-vaccine, she is pro-choice for each person to do what makes the most medical sense for their individual body.