I’m Afraid to Get Vaccinated

It seems to be all people can talk about on the Facebook emetophobia support groups and the emetophobia discussion forums: 

“Will the vaccine make me throw up?” 

“Will the second vaccine make me vomit?” 

“I’m afraid I will vomit with the vaccine.” 

“Has anyone else got the (Pfizer, Moderna, J&J, AstraZeneca) vaccine? Did you get sick from it?”

Frustrated moderators have tried in vain to put all the vaccine questions in one post and/or encourage people to search the page before posting the same question again and again. I can understand their frustration as my inbox and text messages have blown up with similar concerns. I can also understand the fear. I wasn’t even thinking twice about whether or not I’d vomit until reading all the anxiety online. And I’m not even afraid of vomiting any more! I had to remind myself of that and giggle a bit about it. (So far I’ve had the first AtraZeneca shot and all I got was body aches and fatigue for a few days.)

The thing is, phobics and others with anxiety disorders and/or OCD have a hard time taking any risk. We all know this because of the way people feel when sending kids to school or staying in the same house as a sick person, even though you pretty much have to swallow bits of their poop or vomit to catch it yourself. Pretty low risk. Who here reading this, ever puts their fingers in their mouth? Or up their nose? Especially after touching anything at all except their own phone in bed at night.

I can reassure you all that I’ve read hundreds and hundreds of emetophobics testify to the fact that they weren’t sick with the first or second vaccine of any of the varieties offered by the American, Canadian, or UK government. Emetophobics just don’t vomit with trivial things like other people do. If you have emetophobia I can pretty much guarantee that you won’t be sick from ANY of the following:




Labour and delivery



Stage fright


Eating one bite of anything (undercooked meat, moldy bread, outdated dairy)


Since people with emetophobia are naturally anxious people, it makes sense that many of you will have anxiety about getting vaccinated for a couple of other reasons. Let’s examine each one. First of all, both the Johnson and Johnson and AstraZeneca vaccines have been associated with blood clots, and one woman, who was improperly treated, has died. About 15 people have presented with the blood clots but the rest received the correct treatment and did not die. So far, all those affected have been women under the age of 50, and all of them were eithera) obese b) on birth control pills c) on thyroid medication or d) on blood pressure medication. The blood clots are associated with a low platelet count, so if you’re given a blood thinner such as Heparin you could bleed out and die (which is what happened with the one woman who died). SO if you don’t fit into any of the categories above you have nothing to worry about. If you do get a blood clot and tell them at the hospital that you just received x vaccine and not to give you Heparin, then you have nothing to worry about. ALSO your chances of getting a blood clot and dying are literally one in 6 million, and those odds get better with each passing day. Your chances of getting Covid-19 and getting the same exact blood clots are 1 in 5. 


Secondly, many of you have expressed that you don’t want the vaccine because it was developed too fast and not enough people have had it and/or enough time has passed. I do respect anyone’s decision, whether they have emetophobia or not, to not get the vaccine. So long as you know that you’ll have to wear a mask (two if you are exposed to a variant in your area) and socially distance from people and remain isolated for long enough that your country reaches herd immunity (approximately 80% vaccinated). That could be at least 2 years. 

These vaccines were not actually “rushed” as many people think. We can all thank the Chinese for sequencing the virus (I don’t know what that means either but apparently it was a ton of people working day and night on it) and sharing that sequence to the world. The pharmaceutical companies have also been working on this type of vaccine and its basic structure for a long, long time – about 30 years, to be exact. The technology is called synthetic messenger RNA (mRNA), an ingenious variation on the natural substance that directs protein production in cells throughout the body. Once the drug companies (Pfizer and Moderna) were presented with a viral sequence, they just “plugged it in” to their already developed mRNA platform (the other vaccines use DNA, rather than RNA as it’s more stable at lower temperatures). None of these vaccines are traditional in the sense that they do not inject you with a small amount of the virus (living or killed) to get your immune system to identify it later. Trials began early in 2020 on human subjects to get the dosage right, then in the next phase over 70,000 people received the same dose of vaccine that you will receive. 

As of this writing, over 1 BILLION people world-wide have been vaccinated. A few have had an allergic reaction, which can be treated right at the vaccine sites while you wait. One woman has died after receiving the wrong treatment for a blood clot. 

So what are you waiting for?