That's when he teared up, hugged me back and told me the same three words. A thing he hadn't done since I was 11 or so, that is - for more than 10 years. I had always wondered, why so, and now it turned out that he was raised that way - that emotions and hugging is not for men - and he was unable to step over this mental borderline. So, instead of expressing his love in words and affection, he had done it in the only way he knew - materially, financially. And it took me years to understand it and to cross the borderline for him and help him overcome his fears.
Our parents are sometimes as weak, scared, childish and confused as their children are. That's why we are families, I think - to help out each other, to hear out each other, to be brave, loving and forgiving for each other. There is much to consider, before we just succumb to annoyance and other negative emotions. My dad died shortly after that day - if I had been more stubborn, we would have never experienced that breakthrough in our relationships.
People speak different languages of love. It is valuable to learn, which language is closer to the ones we love. Some people express themselves with goofiness, with unnecessary questions, with other strange habits - but they just want to be closer to somebody they love. In the only way they know.