This mother thought COVID-19 was ‘was just like the flu’ – now her unvaccinated teenage daughter is struggling to survive

A vaccine-skeptical Arkansas mother is begging other parents not to make the same mistake as she.

Angela Morris decided against vaccinations for herself and her 13-year-old daughter because she doubted the severity of the coronavirus, but she's learning a hard lesson now that her child has been hospitalized with an infection, reported KTHV-TV.

"I just had a false sense of security that it was just like the flu and it wasn't that serious," Morris said. "Obviously, it is that serious and it was that serious -- now I can see."

Her daughter, Caia Morris Cooper, first experienced flu-like symptoms before the infection became worse, and the girl has spent 12 days in the hospital breathing with the help of a ventilator.

"We've had perfectly healthy children who end up in the hospital, in the ICU, with COVID-19 infection," said Dr. Jessica Snowden, chief of infectious diseases at Arkansas Children's Hospital. "So it is definitely something that could impact anyone."

The hospitalized children all have one thing in common, she said.

"All of the children we have admitted who are seriously sick with COVID-19 are either too young to get vaccinated, or haven't been vaccinated yet," Snowden said.

Morris hopes her experience encourages other skeptics to get themselves and their children vaccinated.

"It's very hard to see her in this situation," Morris said. "It's very hard not knowing if she's really going to come home anymore or not. It's heartbreaking. I wish I would've made better choices for her."

Mom regrets not getting her kid vaccinated for COVID-19