A young man from Ohio turned 18 and, to celebrate, he did something mature and responsible: He got vaccinated after years of parental neglect.
Ethan Lindenberger posted his story on Reddit months ago, saying that his parents were “kind of stupid and don’t believe in vaccines.” The high school senior asked people on the site if, now that he was 18 and legally an adult, he could get the inoculations his parents ignored because they believed the shots were “some kind of government scheme.”
It’s stupid and I’ve had countless arguments over the topic. But, because of their beliefs I’ve never been vaccinated for anything, god knows how I’m still alive. But, i’m a senior in high school now with a car, a license, and money of my own. I’d assume that I can get them on my own but I’ve just never had a conversation with anyone about the subject.
His post was later updated to say he had an appointment to get his shots.
Ethan’s story is inspiring. He stood up to pseudoscience and protected himself when his parents put him in harm’s way. He had the maturity and wisdom his parents lacked. And the way he talked about the situation to local media outlets was as respectful as it could be:
My mom was especially angry but my dad said because I’m 18 he doesn’t care that much. Although my moms 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
“Her opinions are mostly not backed by science, so very largely illogical or rooted in misinformation,” said Lindenberger, about disagreeing with his mom. “I’ve done so in the most respectful way I can.”
Lindenberger says he began researching the benefits of vaccination years prior and presented the information to his mother…
Lindenberger says he was vaccinated for Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, HPV and influenza during his first visit to the county health department and has more vaccinations scheduled for later this month.
In addition to protecting his own health, there’s even more good news: Some of his other family members are now thinking about getting shots, too.
Initially, he said his first major decision of adulthood was a sticking point within his family but now has some of his siblings rethinking their stance on the issue.
The problem with his parents was that they rejected the science behind vaccines. The way to counter that was through proper education, which Ethan obtained. By sharing his story, he’s hopefully helping others in his situation make the right decision as well.