Teen defies mother, gets vaccines after turning 18

Robert Kennedy Jr. speaks at an anti-vaccination rally at the Capitol in Olympia Wash. on Feb. 8. Cases of viral illnesses are up 50 percent worldwide

'I grew up not knowing that you go to the health department and get a shot in your shoulder in your upper arm for a bunch of really big diseases that could have a lot of really bad side effects and a lot of bad implications.

For many teenagers, turning 18 years old means celebrating at a party.

But his mother, Jill Wheeler, described the move as insulting and a "slap in the face", according to Undark. It was like him spitting on me, saying 'You don't know anything, I don't trust you with anything. "I had grown up hearing that and when I started to move on to social media, you know, 13, 14, there was very online heated debate".

"I looked into it, it was clear there was way more evidence in defense of vaccines", he said. Just two weeks ago, Washington state declared a public health emergency because of an ongoing outbreak of measles.

Lindenberger says his parents do not believe in vaccinations unless absolutely necessary.

Lindenberger said that his mother has tried to convince him to stop getting vaccines, but to no avail. Ethan had no idea that he was an outlier among his friends until he spoke to them and discovered that he was the only one who hadn't been vaccinated.

Each year, the CDC sets a children's vaccination schedule based on when kids are most likely to be at risk for a specific illness.

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Mounting distrust has led some parents to not immunize their children, in turn leading to outbreaks of diseases not seen in years, such as measles, whooping cough and mumps.

Measles, a highly contagious disease once thought all but eradicated in the developed world, is making a comeback, and it's all thanks to anti-immunization efforts in recent years, says a recent report from the World Health Organization which says a record number of measles cases were reported in Europe in 2018, due in part to growing pockets of the population where parents are refusing to immunize their children. When we don't see the devastation caused by vaccine-preventable diseases on a daily basis, some people discount the vital need to keep their families safe by vaccinating them'.

He says the only shot he received, tetanus, as a toddler was out of necessity.

For most of his life, Lindenberger thought it was normal for most kids not to get immunized, but about two years ago he began to see how the posts about vaccines his own mother was sharing on social media were unsafe. His mother resisted and claimed there were autism risks from vaccines, a common argument used by anti-vaccination groups that has been widely debunked. In the post, Lindenberger asked for practical advice on how to begin the vaccination process, and said he had never spoken to anyone about it.

'Once I turned 18, I said, 'you know, even though we disagree, still I'm going to pursue vaccinations, ' ' he said. He also told guest host John Berman that once he was finally a legal adult he chose to get vaccinated, whether or not his parents approved.

Lindenberger's post drew more than 1,000 comments, including detailed information on navigating the health care system in one post from someone who identified as a nurse.

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