Teenager defies anti-vaxxer parents to get immunised at 18


A teenager has gone against the wishes of his anti-vaxxer parents to get himself vaccinated. 

Ethan Lindenberger, 18, of Ohio, took to Reddit in December asking where he could get vaccinated adding his parents are “kind of stupid” and he’s never been vaccinated for anything.

“My parents think vaccines are some kind of government scheme,” he wrote.

“It’s stupid and I’ve had countless arguments over the topic.”

Ethan Lindenberger, 18, went to get vaccinated after years of arguments with his anti-vaxxer parents. Source: Facebook/ Ethan Lindenberger

After receiving advice, he wrote he managed to book an appointment before receiving his vaccine in January. 

“My mum was especially angry but my dad said because I’m 18 he doesn’t care that much,” he wrote.

“Although my mum’s trying to convince me to not do it and saying I don’t care about her, I know that this is something I need to do regardless.” 

Australian teens defying wishes of anti-vaxx parents

It emerged on Monday, Australian teens are also going behind their parents’ backs to gain access to vaccinations defying the wishes of their anti-vaccine parents. 

“There’s no room for complacency when it comes to immunisation,” Australian Medical Association Queensland’s Dr Michael Cleary told 7News. 

“It’s very clear that if you are over 18 you are an adult, and you can make your own decisions but there are provisions for those who are under 18 to make decisions about their health.”

Mr Lindenberger told radio network NPR he approached his mum with a pamphlet from the Centre of Disease Control about how vaccines don’t cause autism but she wouldn’t listen.

The teen took to Reddit to ask where he could get vaccinated. Source: Getty Images (file pic)

“Her response was simply ‘that’s what they want you to think,’ ” he said.  

“I was just blown away that you know, the largest health organization in the entire world would be written off with a kind of conspiracy theory-like statement like that.” 

Mum said vaccine would cause brain damage

The Centre for Disease Control reported 10 US states had reported cases of measles last month with 101 reported between December 29 to February 7. 

He received shots for hepatitis A, hepatitis B, influenza and HPV, The Washington Post reported. 

Mr Lindenberger told Fox News he plans to get more vaccines this month.

“It’s stupid and I’ve had countless arguments over the topic,” Ethan Lindenberger said about discussions with his parents on vaccinations.

He added his mum told him during a number of discussions that vaccines cause autism and brain damage.

However, he said his mum wasn’t acting out of malice. He has three younger siblings but his mum won’t let his 16-year-old brother get vaccinated. 

“He is planning to pursue that once he turns 18 just like I did,” the teen told Fox News. 

His mum Jill Wheeler told science news site Undark she was angered by her son’s decision. 

“It was like him spitting on me, saying ‘You don’t know anything, I don’t trust you with anything’,” she said.

“’You don’t know what you’re talking about’ he said to me. ‘You did make a bad decision and I’m going to go fix it’.”

Mr Lindenberger said his mum wasn’t acting out of malice but admits he thinks she’s crazy. Source: Fox News

Despite the disagreements, Mr Lindenberger said he and his mum’s relationship is “great”. 

He later added in a separate Reddit thread he loves his mum “but she’s crazy”. 

“Her radical and unscientific views put my siblings at risk,” he wrote.  

“I don’t care if she looks bad in an article or online because it is bad to not keep your children safe.

“The article (in Undark) was well written and I’m glad to share my story, despite her backlash.” 

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