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explanation for worried father

May 9, 2006

Dear Doctor,

My father recently wrote to you I'm the "19-year-old-son" of the "worried father." He told me about this site after he'd used it. He was not happy! But thanks for trying. Firstly, I am totally amazed by you and this site. It's helped me so much. Thank you for all your responses to people, you give us hope.

Secondly, like I said, my father has had it out with me, and I just think I should clarify a few things about him, especially after the case worker's response. I know he came over bad, so I totally get your reactions, but honestly, he's not a bad guy. He's just angry because I've gotten myself infected and didn't tell him. So he's been worried, he's not a bad guy. I was in the wrong here. I was just concerned about the consequences, for everyone. My coming out was tough on him, and this is tougher. It's not that he wants to throw me out, it's that it might be better for everyone if I go. He just wants a happy home for his family, and I'm making that damn near impossible. We're a pretty traditional family (apart from me, Republicans (bet you're amazed by that), catholic, we call my dad "sir" you get the picture). I'm amazed he found this site and brought himself to post, may be that's a good start. Really, he's not used to being disobeyed. But he's a good man. Just different to me. That doesn't make me right, or him wrong, just makes us different I guess. The horror on his face at your counseling suggestion would have been funny in a different situation.

I think he needs more time. He's not told my mom or brother and sisters since they're not at risk. I'm going to move out for a bit, let him deal with it first. I may have screwed myself up, but I'm not gonna cause collateral damage.

Jake (guilty son of a worried father)

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello Jake,

Thanks for writing in, and I will give "Sir"-Father a bit of credit for at least turning you on to this site. But as for him being such a "good man," nope. I'm not at all convinced.

"Sir" just wants a happy home for his family??? Aren't you part of that family??? Your family doesn't sound "traditional;" it sounds dysfunctional and tragic to me. You call your dad "Sir"??? Sounds more like the army than a loving family. Catholic, Republicans yeah, what a shocker! Dad's not used to being disobeyed??? So I suppose that means you're supposed to vote for those morally reprehensible folks occupying the White House and Congress???

And what's this nonsense about "he's not told my mom or brother or sisters . . . ." Why is it up to him? Why don't you tell them? Since when is being honest "collateral damage?"

Jake, you should not feel guilty. I'm sure "Sir-Daddy-Dearest" has never ever made a mistake or had a lapse in judgment or had any type of indiscretion whatsoever, and that's why he can be so self-righteous about you're becoming HIV positive, right? I repeat he should be ashamed of himself.

Jake, you are a much better son to your father than he is a father to you, his son.

My advice:

1. If you move out, do so because you want to remove yourself from a toxic environment caused by an out-of-touch, self-righteous and self-deluded Daddy Dearest.

2. Tell your mom, brother and sisters what's going on. Better yet, show them these posts.

3. Your father is going to need a lot more than counseling, if he's ever to become a truly "good man."

I'm here if you need me, Jake.

Be well.

Dr. Bob

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