Whatever happened to you in the past, is not you now. You are, only if you are in the now. Not in the future, not in the past: just now. Traumas from past events is just self-maintained illusions and good excuses to avoid dealing with the only thing that matters: now. Happy new you!
Victim culture is pervasive. From gaming to politics, an endless cycle of hurt feelings has tainted all it touches. But in a society where depression is skyrocketing, it’s time to call out a mindset that is ruining people’s lives.
My childhood, teens, and much of my 20s were not good to me. Having grown up in an abusive home where I experienced sexual, mental, and physical abuse, only to go to school where I was relentlessly bullied, I often found myself in a dark space. Throw in a violent rape around my 20th year of existence, and needless to say I was not a happy individual.
Through the eyes of my younger self, all I knew was victimhood. A sentiment backed by my experience with so many different forms of abuse. It was through that lens which I saw the world. I defined myself by my victim status, and I wanted to be treated as such.
By the time I was 25, I wasn’t living a good life. Suicide attempts were the norm, and I desperately sought out people who would coddle me. My coping mechanisms were poor, and I continually regressed into a weaker headspace, coaxed on by the people I filled my life with who treated me as a baby. Nowhere was I pushed to get stronger and I hit a phase where I was only ever upset.
I expand upon my history as such, because through all the coddling, babying, and safespacing I surrounded myself with, my anger, depression, and suicidal tendencies didn’t improve. I remained perpetually miserable. Never finding a leg to stand on because I didn’t have the strength to do so. I was stuck in a pit of despair because I refused to teach myself how to climb. These are the trappings of victim culture.
Thankfully for my own sanity’s sake, I eventually came to the realization that everything I was doing was actually a detriment to my well-being, and I pushed myself in the opposite direction. Years later and mean words online don’t negatively affect me. I went from being afraid of crowds to running into riots to snag footage. And I transformed from a closed-in recluse to a well-known figure within the gaming sphere. My belligerent and firebrand personality is testament to my growth. Hatred of the self is a thing of the past. Which is why it is upsetting to see society going out of its way to ensnare people in a web of barbed wire, one which keeps them in constant pain.
Everywhere you look stand individuals forcing them into a damaging headspace. Words are nitpicked into oblivion as a means of finding creative new ways to become offended. For example, ‘blindspot’ is deemed ableist because it’s somehow disrespectful to actual blind people. Meanwhile, phobias are labeled an accessibility issue within gaming, so titles with spiders are coming under pressure to remove or alter them so that no one gets scared. Elsewhere in gaming, journalists cry out about ‘colonialism’ in fictional titles. It’s so bad that not even Mario is safe. Also not residing in safety are jokes, as time and time again comedians come under fire for doing their jobs.