Selfish Is As Selfish Does

, , , , , , , | Related | August 25, 2020

I have a compromised immune system due to an organ transplant, so leaving the house in the middle of a global health crisis isn’t ideal. Usually, my mother-in-law does the shopping for me, leaving the groceries on the front porch so I can get them after she leaves. My house is on the road between her house and the store, but I still leave at least $20 cash in a designated spot for her troubles, and she leaves my bank card in one of the bags.

This week, I asked for cold items, so she walks right into the house. I am surprised because she doesn’t even knock, but I take the cold items from her and begin wiping down each one before putting it away.

I wear a mask and gloves when I interact with anyone I don’t live with. It might be overkill, but I haven’t had so much as a sniffle since I adopted the practice post-transplant, so either I’m very lucky or it works. My mother-in-law, however, believes it’s all some kind of mind-control conspiracy from the government and refuses to “take it up the a** from the government d**ks.” 

She sees me wiping down a jug of milk, stops, and sighs.

Mother-In-Law: “This is a little ridiculous, don’t you think?”

I’m not interested in getting into this with her for the hundredth time. Neither of us is willing to budge and it only ends in anger.

Me: *Shrugs* “Did you get the cookies and cream ice cream? I don’t see it.”

Mother-In-Law: “No, that much sugar is bad for you.” *Quickly* “They were out.”

Me: “It’s bad for me and they were out?”

She waves me off and begins pulling things from the bags and putting them right in the cupboard.

Mother-In-Law: “The odds of dying are so low, it’s basically nonexistent.”

I grab what she put away and put it on the table.

Me: “Okay, well, thanks for going to the store. I’ll let you get your own groceries home. Is my card in one of these bags?”

Mother-In-Law: “It’s not really that bad. The flu kills—”

Me: “The flu kills people like me all the time. My card?”

She crosses her arms, my card in hand.

Mother-In-Law: “If you’re so scared, why are you making me do your shopping?”

Me: “I’m not making you do anything. [Husband] is away — on a job you convinced him to take because it’s more money now that I can’t work — and I’m here alone. For months. If you don’t want to shop for me anymore, I’ll find someone else.”

Mother-In-Law: *With a smug smile* “[Her Husband] tested positive two days ago and he feels just fine.”


Mother-In-Law: “He’s in the car! He’s not even near you.”

Me: “Get out now!

She throws my bank card on the floor.

Mother-In-Law: “Don’t call me to do your shopping again!”

I called my husband, crying and angry. He told me he would call her, but I told him not to bother. I didn’t want to believe that she would be so stupid and selfish as to expose me to a direct risk like that, but she did. I called my doctor, too, and she told me to go to the nearest testing facility. That was only a few days ago, so I’m still waiting on my results.

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