From the July 2011 magazine.

July 2011: Don't Ask Dr. Mom

She prescribed booze and weed for a twisted ankle, which triggered her son’s deadly disease

"The good doctor prescribed another brown bottle of foamy medicine and I realized I couldn’t feel my ankle. It worked!"

Skateboarding was very popular in the summer of 1987. I was 13 and loved it. One day, I took a nasty fall after rail-sliding along a bus bench, and my ankle got messed up. I hobbled home, in pain, to my mother and asked for help. She explained that we had no medical insurance, but she would give me something to help the pain. She placed my swollen, purple ankle on our beat up, walnut-stained coffee table, said, “Wait here and keep your ankle elevated,” and walked out the door.

She returned about 20 minutes later with a brown grocery sack, out of which she pulled a six-pack of...

-- Jason H.

Stayton, Oregon