How to Lose a Viewer (On Trauma and Loneliness)

by Noise Pollution

Do you want to know the fastest way to get me to stop engaging with your content?

Making insensitive jokes at the expense of burn victims.

It’s not something that comes up very frequently, so when it does, I find it incredibly jarring. Maybe if making those kinds of jokes was a cultural norm, or something that was done on a regular basis by a large number of people, I’d be able to make exceptions here. Not out of respect for it, but out of resignation at the state of the world.

But it’s not something that happens often. There are so many content creators out there who haven’t made that kind of joke. So when you do; when you look at some horrible ugly image and say, “That there is so horrible. It looks like a burn victim.” I can just fucking leave! I don’t have to engage, I don’t have to leave an angry comment, I don’t have to spend another goddamn second of my life connected to you or the media you produce.

I don’t have to waste my time on people who don’t think about the people who suffer when they hear those remarks, because there are millions of other people who I can spend time on.

The thing is… I’m not even sure if it’s a rare occurrence because people are being sensitive and empathetic and socially aware; I worry that maybe the only reason it happens infrequently is because it’s not an easy target in every situation. Like, the jokes can only be made when exposed to something… something ugly. So… god, I just bummed myself out. I don’t like having to think about that being the point of comparison. I don’t like thinking that the only time anyone ever talks about what happened to me in a casual way is when it’s comparing me to something ugly and disgusting.

But, I mean… the point I was trying to make before totally bumming myself out is that I fear that maybe people would make the jokes more often if the opportunities arose more often. And that’s a real…. That’s really fucking sad.

I hope people can maybe consider other people before speaking like that. I’m not being overly-sensitive. I’m being normally-sensitive. People who do not have a point of reference in regards to this can not tell me that the way I’m feeling is wrong. The way I am feeling is right. I feel sad. I feel hopeless…

I feel incredibly fucking lonely when those jokes are made. It’s really easy to. I don’t have anyone who understands. There is literally no one in my life who could even come close to understanding that feeling. That… that deflation. I was so excited about this content; I was so happy to find another series of videos I enjoyed watching and then… All the wind out of my sails. Just… “Oh… I guess I don’t really belong here after all.”

As cool as I feel ghosting on their stuff; as right as it is to drop them entirely, I feel like the kid being told he can’t play football with the other kids at recess. I feel there again. Like it’s another thing I’m not allowed to enjoy because of my scars.

I feel lonely.

I feel like the only person in the universe who feels the way I feel.

And I’m sad.