Recently my son has been diagnosed of HSV-1 infection, a very common disease that affects more than 60% of US population. Because of that, my dad has been super critical of my wife, my in-law, as well as myself. He wants to stay completely clean of this disease and even get a divorce. I understand his concern. the viral mechanism is scary: virus goes into the nerve ganglia (cell body) and eventually sneaks into the spinal chord and stays there. There is no cure. Besides it’s highly contagious via body fluid and saliva. But the symptoms are mere lip blisters, and if anything the nurses and other medical professionals are at the highest risk of infection because they deal with patients like that everyday.
Now the next incident really pissed me off. Tomorrow is my wife’s first day at her new job and thus she needs to be away from the baby all day long. I also need to attend a meeting with my boss in the afternoon. This left us with no choice but to ask him to fetch my mother over to look after the baby for a few hours. After a few moments of calculated hesitation, he asked why we couldn’t ask the nanny to come over instead. I mentioned that the nanny doesn’t understand English very well, and he countered by saying my mother also doesn’t. What a brilliant excuse! I am totally sympathetic of the way he tries to protect his family. After all if my mother contracts this disease, he will excommunicate her from the house as well. I wonder if he realizes the risk involved living with one of his promiscuous tenants.
According to my own calculation, it would be to no avail to try not to talk to him for say a year as a form of passive aggression. After all, when he deems necessary, he is fully capable of breaking the silence as I am sure he would want to. Perhaps more effective would be to inform him of some highly contagious disease that I have contracted, so that he would naturally want to avoid contact. There is another laundry list of grievances regarding him that I won’t belabor here. In any case, his recent behavior is unsightly, characteristic of older people wishing to preserve their virginity, much like the ancient Rockefeller did when he approached 100 years old, except not nearly as rich.