If you’re one of those people who likes babies, you know that they cause a knee-jerk reaction that forces you to get all up in their adorable little grills and start making idiotic noises at them while they stare at you, surprised and terrified. And since it’s still illegal to just eat a baby that you find adorable — although we’ll keep threatening to force infants down our gullets as a sign of our affection — it’s not illegal to kiss the precious little angels until they either fall asleep or (more likely) start wailing for an adult who isn’t you. But listen, there’s no shame in wanting to kiss a baby!
You know what else there’s no shame in? Having herpes. We know that your seventh grade science class made it clear that there’s no fate worse, but as we now know, the virus is very common and also very treatable. Still, if you’ve got the virus and a cold sore has appeared on your face, it’s probably best not to kiss babies for awhile. Those two things don’t mesh. Because what your seventh grade teacher didn’t tell you is that transmitting the virus isn’t hard. And herpes doesn’t care if it’s a kid or an adult getting it, as long as it can divide and multiply.
“Okay, that’s great, but why are you telling me?” You may be wondering. Well, that’s because a baby was recently infected with the disease and his mom has taken to the internet to inform the world that kisses from friends and strangers who may be infected can be life-threatening.
The post is below, but please note that it could be considered upsetting:
According to Cosmopolitan, baby Oliver is doing fairly well now, but he had to spend four days in the hospital on an IV drip after contracting oral herpes (HSV-1). While the photos are painful, Amy Stinton’s post — which has now been shared thousands of times — is also an important reminder to both parents and anyone who comes into contact with babies that this can happen.
In fact, as Cosmopolitan reports, Oliver is not the first victim in the past year.
Stinton’s child isn’t the first baby to get herpes from someone else’s cold sore. Just last year,mom Claire Henderson shared a similar story, warning other parents about the dangers of infants contracting the virus from a seemingly benign kiss. Her story went viral, with over 51,000 people sharing it. And in 2013, a two-month-old premature baby passed away after catching the virus from his father.
The moral here? Be careful with babies, and don’t kiss them if you’ve got a cold sore going. Yeah, it may feel terrible, but it’s for the best. And if you’ve got a baby, this would probably be a great time to invite strangers to not get too close. As Claire Henderson points out in her post above, many people don’t know that this is even possible, so it’s best to be safe and risk offending someone rather than having your kid become ill.