How To Approach A Reluctant Friend Or Family Member Who Still Doesn’t Want To Get The Vax

vaccination discussions

Although Australia is inching towards its vax targets (yiew), there’s still a ways to go before we can truly get on top of this dastardly pandemic.

To do this, the best option we have at our disposal is for as many Aussies as possible to get vaccinated, so if you have any reluctant friends or fam that you know about, it might be time to whip out the speeches and get informing.

Look, it’s somewhat understandable for people to be hesitant about getting a relatively new vaccination, but it also wouldn’t be made available to the general public if it wasn’t safe.

So if you want to chat to someone who’s yet to get the jab, here are a couple of ideas to get the ball rolling:

Be cool, calm and collected

Have you ever seen a productive discussion where the parties involved get increasingly flustered? It never works.

Listen to their concerns and try to relate to them by finding some common ground before challenging their views.

They are your mates or fam after all, so there’s absolutely nothing to gain from entering the chat heated and worked up. Try to be the coolest cucumber possible and if things start to get a bit tense, perhaps take a breather and whip out a game of Connect Four.

As a matter of fact, some of the best conversations I’ve had are over games of Connect Four, so that could also be a way in.

State the facts

Opinions are like pants. Everyone owns them but something something something, I don’t know where I was heading with that analogy.

Regardless, there’s no use injecting your opinion in there because chances are, the person you’re chatting to will have a different opinion and you’ll just go around in circles.

Instead, list the facts:

  • The vaccines available, regardless of which one you choose, reduce the risk of being infected with COVID-19.
  • If you do get infected, the symptoms are usually much milder for those who are vaccinated than those who aren’t.
  • You’re less likely to end up with long COVID.
  • You’re also less likely to pass COVID on to friends or family (there’s no arguing with this one).
  • COVID vaccines are safe, with less than 1% of recipients visiting the doctor’s or hospital after being vaccinated. All vaccines can cause side effects, but usually these are mild, such as a sore arm or headache that will go away pretty quickly.

Be open to a two-way convo

This is a conversation, it isn’t a TED Talk – listen to your loved one and be receptive to what they have to say (even if it sounds super unreasonable). Then you just lay down the facts again and bam – vax city.

Remind ’em of the perks

Oh, how much fun we can have once we meet our vax targets.

As it stands, most states across Aus have slightly different approaches when it comes to border rules, which means we can’t explore our own backyard as freely as we once could.

If we meet our targets, though, that could all change. There are about four states I’m yet to visit and by golly if I don’t see them before I’m old then there’ll be hell to pay.

This isn’t (entirely) about my travel plans, though, it’s primarily about our health and the health of those around us, so when you’re having the chat with the vax-hesitant person in your life, remind them that it’s really just slowing down our inevitable freedom and continuing to put others at risk.

Remember sitting on a plane for hours and complaining about the flight having like, two random episodes of The Big Bang Theory? Neither do I, but I’d like to eventually.

For more information to support your vax chat, visit Roll Up For WA.