It’s crazy how much Korea is about connections. I suppose that’s true in any society, but it seems more pronounced in Korea.
My mom wanted me to try one more thing with my ear, and she had a connection, so she had me see a specialist at Hanyang University Hospital. Apparently it takes a long time to get an appointment there, but with this connection, they scheduled me in for the next day. And the doctor was with us for 2 hours, even arranging for me to be seen by the senior department head. And in the end, everything – hearing test, exams, steroid injections – was free. All because of a connection. That’s nuts.
I’ve said before how Korean work culture is totally screwed up. I learned more about how Korean society has issues, and it’s depressing. For example – everyone has affairs. A friend of mine works at the most prestigious law firm in Seoul, and he estimates that 98-99% of his coworkers have regular affairs. And it’s all out in the open. He was confused in the beginning when coworkers introduced him to their girlfriends / boyfriends when they were married with kids. That’s how brazen they are. It’s crazy.
I did some research afterwards that confirmed it – marriages in Korea are in trouble. The divorce rate has skyrocketed in the past couple decades, and now Korea’s divorce rate is in the top 10 worldwide. If certain surveys are to be believed, Korea has one of the highest rates of extramarital affairs as well as visits to prostitutes in the world. I found that shocking. I always thought Koreans were innocent, probably because my parents’ generation is so modest, but that’s completely wrong. Korea is completely screwed up.