Vaccination Etiquette 101

Could we talk about your Covid vaccination etiquette? Mine too, of course, but mostly yours.

First, if you’ve been lucky enough, obsessive enough, or sneaky enough to have already gotten your first or second Covid shot, don’t brag about it.

Don’t repeat five times in every conversation that you’ve been vaccinated. Especially don’t do this if you don’t know whether the person you’re speaking to has been vaccinated, and you don’t know this because you didn’t ask and frankly don’t care, now that you’ve been.

Don’t describe your personal heroism and cleverness in having gotten up at 5:30 am and punched the enter key on three different devices simultaneously just at the stroke of 6 o’clock to jump on the vaccination appointments and get your spot. Or how you stayed on hold on the vaccine hot line for a full three hours playing solitaire and waiting for a human and almost lost patience but at the last second were told you could come in the next day. Or, alternatively, how your spouse just decided to try it one afternoon and — bingo! — got slots for the both of you in no time.

Don’t go into granular detail about the process of your having been vaccinated, how really easy it was, how little it hurt, how you only had to wait five minutes, how you didn’t even have to get out of your car, how nice the health care workers were. Or how you got chills after your second dose and had to lie down on the couch for a couple of hours.

Don’t disclose, unprompted, how you’re way younger than all those people trying to get the vaccine, but you knew somebody who knew somebody and it just so happened they had some extras lying around and if you could get over there that afternoon…..

Or how you’re in your forties and perfectly healthy, really, but your BMI is kinda high and you sit on the board of a hospital so are technically a health care worker or it was somehow decided you were in a high-risk group and how you felt kinda bad about taking a dose from someone else. But you did anyway.

Really, really don’t share how personally relieved you are to have been vaccinated, how it’s like a huge weight removed from your shoulders, how the mornings seem a little brighter now, how you can’t wait to hug everybody and go to a restaurant, how you feel like doing cartwheels even though you’re 65+ and would break a hip if you did.

Don’t brand-shame. Meaning, don’t say that you got the “good vaccine” early because you didn’t want to end up with that other, inferior vaccine. Like the person you’re talking to.

In short, if you’re not asked, don’t tell. And if you are asked, be brief. Yes or no will generally suffice. Think of it as the etiquette equivalent of talking about getting a raise or how much is in your 401(k). The less said, the better.

Remember back when you tested positive for Covid and you felt a little ashamed and said little or nothing about it to anyone? Be like that.

Don’t wear your “I Got Vaccinated” sticker. Just don’t. Not until we all can wear one.

6 thoughts on “Vaccination Etiquette 101

  1. I agree with almost everything EXCEPT we do need to let people know we have been vaccinated and are fine. There are too many vaccine hesitant or anti vaxxers out there spreading disinformation. We need to counter that with “ yes we did get vaccinated or we will because it is the neighborly thing to do”. Not just for me, but for you, too.

  2. Pingback: Post-Pandemic Derangement Syndrome | Mortal Coil

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