Lindenberger said he confronted his mother with the information, but she simply rebuffed him.
'It was like him spitting on me, saying "You don't know anything, I don't trust you with anything". You don't know what you're talking about.
Many people have rushed to vaccinate themselves and their children since the Vancouver-area outbreak started at the beginning of the year.
And Monroe County, in the western part of NY state, has been hit by seven cases of measles this year: four cases confirmed in a lab, and three fitting the clinical profile of the disease. And all 50 states grant exemptions for medical reasons.
Late past year, Lindenberger, now a high school senior, confided in a pastor, who suggested he was legally free to make decisions.
Lindenberger's post received more than a thousand comments with advice on how and where he should go to receive his shots.
Her son's records indicate he was vaccinated for tetanus and hepatitis B when he was 2, but Wheeler told Undark he received the tetanus shot after he accidentally cut himself, and the other must be a paperwork mistake.
"We will continue our aggressive, multi-pronged response, until it is clear the outbreak has been contained", she said.
Ethan Lindenberger grew up thinking that not being vaccinated was normal.
In Washington, a self-described underage teen wrote in January that his or her mother would not allow vaccines. "I, as well as my siblings, hold the ideology that vaccines are a public health issue, and a personal responsibility to the benefit of the population, not a right you can revoke from your children".
Experts at the Central Racine County Health Department say vaccines are useful and necessary, yet there are schools in the county with immunization rates low enough to be considered risky.
"Measles is exquisitely contagious".
According to USA Today, Harris, who is from Clark County, the region where the majority of the 52 confirmed measles cases have been reported, residents are "concerned about our community, its immunity and the community safety".
There is no federal law mandating children be immunized, but only seven states - including Arkansas -and Washington D.C. allow minors to get vaccinations without parental consent. Minnesota is a state where guardians can opt out of required vaccinations if they philosophically object to them.
Many, like Lindenberger, have turned to Reddit for advice.
The tension has complicated his home life.
"I plan to get Hepatitis A and B, MMR, the flu, HPV, TDaP [tetanus, diptheria and pertussis], and many other immunizations that I was "exempt" from", she wrote in an email, adding that the re-emergence of measles has made her "seriously anxious".
He said his mother was "especially angry" about his decision, but his father "didn't care that much" because he's 18 years old now.