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Amanda Peet Says Autism and Vaccinations Aren't Linked

Amanda Peet Says Autism and Vaccinations Aren't Linked

Amanda Peet's comments advocating vaccinations in Cookie magazine sparked debate among lilsugar readers. And that heated conversation wasn't limited to our website. Cookie's forum was also full of comments from passionate parents. In this behind-the-interview clip, the actress and mother of 18-month-old, Frances, discusses the misconception that she believes parents have when it comes to autism and vaccinations.

Do you think it's appropriate for a parent whose child does not have autism to address this issue?

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VegasNative VegasNative 8 years
My daughter is 8 yrs old. I did not have the flu shot when pergnant with her. She was delayed in ALL milestones, had food issues from the very start including nursing & texture issues. We believe that her Autism was not caused by the MMR but that it is genetic. I have several family members with Autism including my husband. He made comments that he did the same repetitave things as a child. My daughter was born after the thirmosil was taken out of the MMR shots. I read the findings on the outcome. Everyone has their own opinions on this and if that is how each of us feels then that is ok. You do what you feel is right.
CrazyMother CrazyMother 9 years
So sorry Lickety Split. I'm sure you've looked into so many options (diet change, behavioral therapy, etc) but try not to lose hope. Researchers are making headway. Are you in any support groups for parents? What bothers me most about all of this is how little the medical world values the opinion of mothers. No one knows their child better than their parents, especially the person who carried them for 9 months ( or adopted them :) ). People are so quick to say "Oh the autism didn't just come after the vaccine, you just noticed it then." How condescending. My two-year old is on an alternative schedule, some are postponed. Some, like the chicken pox vaccine and HPV, I don't think she'll get at all. For parents who choose not to vaccinate at all, I don't point fingers. If anyone is to blame for future outbreaks of disease, I blame the medical/insurance community for the distrust they've fostered amongst parents. Who hasn't been looked at sideways when they said "Oh we're not doing that vaccine now..." That does not open the communication lines.
lickety-split lickety-split 9 years
if she was talking to a friend about her opinion so what, no big deal. but she's in a magazine and her opinions are being presented as if she has some knowledge or expertise; and she doesn't. to her this is not a big deal, she's just thinking out loud. but to those of us living the nightmare of a child who was permanently, seriously, damaged by vaccines her comments are insulting. i saw what vaccines did to my daughter; her life is essentially over. no speech, no sign language, no picture communication system, the mental capacity of a 18 month old, at the mercy of every person she comes into contact with for her entire life. and then to be called a parasite for being unwilling to expose my other children to the same fate? she has no idea what she's talking about. but it’s a free country, so she is free to spread her ignorance.
Greggie Greggie 9 years
I've never heard of a doctor recommending the HPV shot to a toddler. It's not on my daughter's schedule until she's 12, and that's only a recommendation. I have no idea yet if she's getting it.
cmrmr cmrmr 9 years
I thought her comment about how parents that don't vaccinate are "parasites" was a little excessive. I don’t believe in abstaining from vaccination, but I do believe the current vaccination schedule is overwhelming. My mother is an obstetrician and her motto goes something like....if it's not 100% necessary, if you're not sure it's safe and if it's not time-tested, avoid it. She was always talking me out of new vaccinations, certain vitamins/supplements, and cosmetic procedures. A lot of the vaccinations given to babies were given to me as a teenager. I have no idea why a toddler would need an HPV shot or some of the other things out there until they are a little older. I guess to a certain degree, what vaccinations your baby need depend on its environment. I think that should be considered. I'm quite interested in this topic because I am pregnant with my first and have an autistic cousin. I would be heartbroken in my child was autistic and I think all parents should invest some time to make an educated decision on what they believe is best for their baby.
Kimpossible Kimpossible 9 years
I didn't see your last post brown_eye_girl.. we said pretty much the same thing and I agree name calling is never the way to gain peoples respect. It never helps one win their case and as a matter of fact it usually hurts it.
Kimpossible Kimpossible 9 years
I agree with most that she has a right to her opinion. I also agree that more people should do their own research. I also agree that scare tactics suck. And I agree that people shouldn't make medical decisions for their family based on what an entertainer says, just as much as I don't think people should make political decisions based on what an entertainer says.. I really wish entertainers would stick to entertaining. If they are a paid sponsor that's different, but I would rather they stick to products and not issues that can vary from person to person and ones that people have very strong opinions about... there is always going to be disagreement about these types of things and entertainers I think should keep their opinions on such matters to themselves.. many of them use their entertainer status and "power" to influence people and I think that's wrong. but that's just me.
brown_eyed_grrl brown_eyed_grrl 9 years
Of course Amanda Peet is welcome to have her opinions, as we all are, and she's free to use her celebrity to voice those opinions. I just don't care what an actor has to say about politics, medicine, science, or anything else that doesn't have to do with their latest movie or tv show. I'll consult doctors and do my own research. I do think she should consider finding a better way to win people over than calling parents "parasites" for not vaccinating their kids.
Greggie Greggie 9 years
"There is no reason to flood a 2 or 4 month old with 5 or 6 shots in one ped visit" That's why I do the alternate schedule. She gets no more than 3 vaccines per visit, although it's mostly 2. We go in more often, but it's worth it.
CrazyMother CrazyMother 9 years
Same here. I used to "like" her although I mean, we really don't know any of these celebrities. The fact that she'd be willing to insult mothers who are just responding to a broken medical system just to promote her movie, is infuriating. I'm so sorry about your son and hope he gets better soon! My husband is a behavioral therapist with autistic children across the spectrum so although I'd never pretend to know what you're going through, I know you're an angel for all of your hard work everyday. There is nothing like seeing your child go through something like this, especially when they're in the school system.
faerymagick15 faerymagick15 9 years
crazy_mother...well said...we had this debate over on CBB and it got awful! I happen to have a son who is affected by autism, although mildly, but I have been around special needs kids for a very long time and although everyone has a right to their opinion...until you are in their shoes you just DO NOT understand. I am not against vaccinating. My son had the MMR before it was made safer and I definitely believe it played a part in his disabilities. I am whole heartedly FOR delayed vaccine schedules, greener vaccines, and less vaccines in each visit. There is no reason to flood a 2 or 4 month old with 5 or 6 shots in one ped visit. Amanda used to be one of my favorite actresses...until she did this interview.
CrazyMother CrazyMother 9 years
PS. I only think she's doing this because of her X Files movie coming up. This is how Hollywood works, do/say anything to stay in the press. Madonna anyone? Calling moms who don't vaccinate "parasites" is a good way to get attention.
Greggie Greggie 9 years
Also, autism is only one reason non-vaxers are against vaccines.
Greggie Greggie 9 years
I completely agree with secretthoughts - sure it's ok for her to have an opinion and I'm glad she researched her options (allegedly) but... why bother making a statement??
CrazyMother CrazyMother 9 years
She irritates me. Jenny McCarthy has done more research and has been in contact with more families with autism who have also studied this extensively. A mother holding a child without autism has not looked into this issue in as much depth because...it's not affecting her daily life. The organization she's attached with is using her for their agenda. I did my college literature review on whether autism and vaccines were linked- most medical journals did find a link to autism and mercury/thimerosal which is why it isn't used VERY MUCH anymore, but some doctor's offices still use vaccines with thimerosal but parents don't know that they can ask for alternatives. There are many preservatives in vaccines that are questionable. My belief is that some children have predispositions that are TRIGGERED by preservatives in vaccines, especially when they are given on ridiculously close schedules. No baby needs five shots in one day. That floods their immune system. Jenny McCarthy is loud and sometimes grating, but she's bringing publicity to an important issue and hopefully helping parents educate themselves instead of taking their doctor's word for everything (they work for pharmaceutical and insurance companies, not a good idea).
Dana-Ann Dana-Ann 9 years
I don't think that her occupation has anything to do with her right to an opinion. The fact that several people commented using her "movie star" title to discredit her is inappropriate. She's simply a concerned parent, like everyone else here (I'm assuming). If anyone commenting here is a pediatrician specializing in the benefits (or downside) of vaccinations, then maybe your opinion would carry more weight. Since no one has claimed that, all we can do is allow the woman her right to an opinion and be grateful that, at the very least, she is using her celebrity status to bring attention to a very important topic.
Gabriela14815884 Gabriela14815884 9 years
I think she has every right to her opinion.
LiLRuck44 LiLRuck44 9 years
Sure she can say whatever she'd like. Hopefully people don't make medical decisions based on some movie star's opinion? It seems silly to me that she has her happy healthy baby there playing, talking about autism. And I am not surprised in the least to hear what roxtarchic said.
brown_eyed_grrl brown_eyed_grrl 9 years
@aes985--Not sure where you got the idea that I consider Jenny McCarthy an expert, either. Might want to read my post more carefully.
KaiLynLyn KaiLynLyn 9 years
sorry about the link
roxtarchic roxtarchic 9 years
I think I would respect her opinion more if I felt she did more research... (and didnt make such an arrogant comment) I definitely would have asked my B in L (if i had one that was a dr) for his opinion... but once I knew his position... I think I would have wanted an opposing view... rather than ask his mentor who's a HUGE advocate for vaccines. I don't feel that's researching... asking one side... and KaiLynLyn the link didnt work... but Dr. Sears The Vaccine Book was one of the books I read on the topic... I highly recommend that one... it didnt try and win you over to one side or the other....a very good book and great place to start your research... (i wish i had read it first, some of the others i read were much more alarming)
secrethoughts secrethoughts 9 years
While she's entitled to her opinion just like everyone else, I don't think she has anything new to add to this conversation, and I don't see what she's bringing to the table. She's not a doctor. She's not a researcher. Her kid has not been adversely affected. She's an actress with a healthy kid who has been listening to what biased people (who listen to pharma and fear the lawsuits they could be subject to if they recommended that parents forgo vaccinations) have to say. (For the record, I feel that most Hollywood types (not just Peet) bring little to the table as far as informed opinions worth listening to, but I do think that celebs are able to bring attention to certain issues, which can be valuable.)
KaiLynLyn KaiLynLyn 9 years
I think she has every right to try to voice her opinion, I just hope she is doing her own research rather than just listening to one doctor. Too many of these doctors are not doing their own research, but are listening to the AAP and BigPharma -- each with vested interest in vaccine sales. Very interesting article on the AAP and the newly formed "Immunization Alliance." http://www.askdrsears.com/forum/message.asp?id=63291 This group is completely missing the mark on why parents are scared to vaccinate. They are just using emotional scare tactics to get parents to vaccinate.
pinkprincess1101 pinkprincess1101 9 years
the more people involved the better regardless of the person and illness, i respect anyone willing to give their time to educate or talk about different illnesses and diseases
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