Is it the MMR vaccine?

My child regressed after the MMR vaccine at 15 months just as a large proportion of other Autistic children did. I do not blame the vaccine for Steven’s Autism, as having studied Steven very closely I recognised that he displayed behaviour that was different or lacking in normal development even before the time when the regression took place. I had concerns over Steven’s level of activity, his erratic sleep pattern and the comprehension of language before he had his MMR vaccination. I was only able to learn this by studying Steven very closely. I had taken Steven to a baby group from the age of 4 months, thereafter to a toddler group where I was constantly observing Steven alongside other babies and toddlers. Furthermore, Steven and I travelled for 2 months during the time of the vaccination. In my view, although Steven seemed to develop many age appropriate skills by the time he reached 15 months, he did not possess enough to be called non-Autistic. 15 months is an age where most toddlers assert themselves and become aware of themselves. If the Autism was lying dormant in his system this could have been a time that it triggered.

Recognising Steven’s loss of skills after the MMR vaccination together with symptoms in behaviour before the MMR could have meant a genetic susceptibility which triggered at a certain age in his development. I cannot say if the MMR acted as a trigger and enhanced the severity of the Autism or if it was caused by some other environmental factor or even just the age where he recognised his own difficulties. Whatever the reason, I had to look at ways of helping Steven learn to cope with the world. However, I did not hesitate to give Steven’s younger sister the vaccination when it was due, as I was clear from her level of alertness that Autism was not a factor.

Award winning author of "No Matter What" (Autism)
(Psychology / Mental health - Parenting / Family - Health general )