Grow thicker skin

26 Oct

Every child is born with enemies. There are people in this world who will dislike you for every conceivable aspect of you. Born in America? There are people who will dislike you for that. Born in Mexico? There are people who will dislike you for that too. People will dislike you for the color of your skin, the clothes you wear, the friends you have, the games you play, where you went to school, what your parents do for a living, the car you drive, everything.

I once read an easy 2 step guide for being offended. Step 1, have an opinion, Step 2, post that opinion on the internet. One of the sad things about the internet is that it opens you up to all kinds of people who will attack you for just about anything. Sometimes your mere existence will irate them. This can be really hard for thin skinned people, people who are care about what other people think about them. I’m having this problem. Often I get really mean comments left on my blog. Comments that don’t make any constructed arguments, just attempts to attack and degrade me.

While I delete these comments, they often sour my day and I’m left hurt and thinking about them for the rest of the evening. I know I should ignore these people, but it’s just hard.

2 Responses to “Grow thicker skin”

  1. Alex Schröder October 30, 2009 at 12:45 pm #

    Sometimes I feel like that as well. I’m not sure whether any of the following help against insulting blog comments. I guess not.

    One thing that helped me was being explicitly rude to people that are implicitly rude. Somebody says “What are you thinking? This moderation nothing but fascist censorship!!” – Instead of arguing in favor of moderation, or explaining that freedom of opinion doesn’t imply that you can use my website to express your opinion, just answer with “You’re an idiot. Of course this is not fascist censorship.”

    Another important element is to make sure you invest less energy than your opponents. They write “rant rant rant rant rant rant rant…” Your reply: “I disagree.” Let them invest more time in questions before you actually start replying. Put the burden on them to prove that they’re interested in a serious discussion.

    Sometimes some form of public reaction also helps. You could delete the 5 idiot comments, and update your post to say “this post attracted five idiot comments which I deleted.” It also sends a signal to future idiots.

  2. godlesspaladin October 30, 2009 at 2:59 pm #

    Hahaha, I like the second one, just make them work. Danke 🙂

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