((( THEY ))) are coming to get us?
Looks like she started off with the new-age crystal and faith healing stuff and gravitated to Q conspiracies. This just shows what happens when people do not accept objective reality and allow irrational beliefs into their lives. Once you allow one irrational belief to take hold, you are open to all the others.
I know it is a kid’s book, but it is about how nasty ideas and ideologies can spread and take hold. And how you stop them by taking out the source.
And your solution seems to be: an ultimatum and then cut it off? And anything short of that is “abuse”?
The point is “the truth” will not work with QNuts. The only solution is maintaining the relationship and gentle reintroduction of small facts on the periphery of their landscape of falsehoods.
As a member of the “Baby Bust” (right between Boomers and GenX), I get this crap All. The. Time.
Funny thing is that the Internet was invented in the 1970s, and even its OS of choice (Unix) counts its date/time info from 0000 hrs on Jan. 1, 1970.
We were the first Internet-connected IT geeks, and even we stood on the shoulders of those who came before us.
Fortunately he hasn’t veered into that territory … yet*. While unstated, it was clearly more the general idea that ultra-wealthy elites (Prince Charles, the Rockefellers, etc.) might have engineered the pandemic (or perhaps hoax) to somehow control us further. One of the most bemusing things about people who buy into this type of conspiracy theory is that they’re completely blind to the many open rather boring methods the Davos crowd actually uses to milk time, money and resources out of people who aren’t millionaires. It’s not exactly hidden knowledge, but I suppose secrets are always more exciting and dramatic.
[* though it’s well understood that anyone who spends enough time burying himself in conspiracy theories inevitably ends up finding himself surrounded by proponents of “the Socialism of Fools”.]
My heart goes out to you having a similar family member diving deep into many conspiracies… why not just one? why so many?
I decided to go down the path of providing time and research into the film ‘Plandemic: Indoctornation’ which was a big part of her belief system (among many… why so many!) trying to validate something that was held important.
Seeing what would be obvious red flags I spent just a couple of hours researching David E Patton the other huckster in the ‘documentary’ that was a noted expert but seems to have fallen off the radar… gave a TED talk that has disappeared into the ether.
However it was not hard to debunk Patton’s constructed career and CV, his presence in Plandemic: Indoctornation his presence is significant yet I could easily provide evidence that this is a con man.
No response from a beloved member of my circle of friends. Evidence and facts are not something that was worth responding to. Not up for an argument less so a discussion.
Please elaborate. Where did I say any of that?
I don’t know if this is just me but what I pick up on from this family is that mom has really never been thought of as very smart and her “crazy ideas” have just been tolerated and blown off because her family loves her despite them, and mom has sort of internalized that loving contempt and built up defenses to deal rather than grow/change.
Seems to me like there’s already a callus of sorts built up where mom knows no one respects her anyway and so just retreats into her own reality further and further believing she’ll be vindicated one day and the family has just kind of gone on around her likely because trying to engage with her doesn’t seem worth it. There’s clearly more on the line with her than reason alone can reach.
Could this have been stopped earlier? Dunno. Maybe? Would it have upset the balance of family life on some level though ? Most likely.
To me file under: enabling is abuse too.
Props to the son for trying to change this dynamic though. He clearly loves his mom.
Enabling is definitely abuse, but this cult has gone on too long and gotten too deep in too many people. Many of these people are not going to be curable. They’re never coming out of this. And no amount of truth or facts or gently trying to bring them back will work. They’re brainwashed on the highest level. They need to be deprogrammed by professionals to even have a shot at coming out of this, and there aren’t enough professionals nor is their desire to do that.
We’ve, as a generation, basically shrugged at our parents little beliefs and basically ignored it because “it wasn’t hurting anyone.” Now it’s mass delusion, is hurting people, has expanded to include all kinds of other groups of people, and almost all of them have guns and approve of the murder of liberals to “save their country.” At this point, it’s probably too late to stop some really dark things from happening.
I think what you describe is very similar to the dynamic going on in my family–in my case, it’s my sibling who has fallen down the rabbit hole. Since childhood, they have always been vulnerable to conspiracy theories and worldviews that dismiss scientific evidence with the comment that “a lot of science has been disproven.” (I think adherence to new agey stuff like crystals, homeopathic remedies, kangen water, and binaural beats is a strong indicator of vulnerability to Qanon conspiracies.) It’s very difficult to deal with. I agree in some sense with your comment that “enabling is abuse,” and I try to take a diplomatic but confrontational strategy, especially on the subjects of COVID-19 and BLM (which has led to our estrangement). My parents love their child dearly, however, and prefer to disregard the (increasingly unhinged) nuttiness to focus on their talents and achievements.
I wish there were a strategy for managing this situation with compassion and understanding that might have some chance of bringing our loved ones back, but I don’t think it exists.
I really think that sooner or later psychologists will wake up and define some sort of “social media syndrome”, where people abandon any kind of sense and start believing whatever.
Mind you, it has always been there in some form, but what was required was expensive, massive investments of energy like newspapers, radio/TV messages or Nürnberg rallies. Nowadays, any rando on the net can spout anything and voilá! One million followers! It’s so widespread and dangerous that I’d say it merits a new definition, and - more urgently! - new therapies.
In the meantime we are not in a good place to respond. As many commenters here point out, if you ever-so-carefully engage, you risk rupturing relations, and if you don’t that’s tantamount to enabling, and the affected get worse anyway. A royal pickle, this…
Winner winner, click here for a free chicken dinner!
Take it from someone who has been (generally happily) married for well over 30 years, and who’s parents were married for over 60 years – what the husband describes is a functional marriage.
To build on what @gracchus is saying, it’s also more comforting than the reality, which is that no one is really “in charge” of the whole thing and that means that there is no easy fix for anything. It’s just lots of hard work and dealing with facts and science… it’s just easier to assume there is some grand plan in place, good or bad. That really does explain the overlap with evangelicals, who tend to be believe in an active, interventionist god (it should be noted their view of god isn’t the only one or even the predominant view… they are just some of the loudest religious people).
That is A marriage. Not everyone is out for that gender wars bullshit. Don’t assume that your marriage or the marriage of others you know is the same for the rest of humanity.
That’s pretty much what I did to my father. Almost no contact or contact on my own terms and the moment things derail I leave. I don’t engage. You can’t fight if only one side is willing and our lives have a fixed number of days. I’m not willing to waste my time being sucked into drama, I can refuse that.
There ARE Fox News addicts that drove their families to divorce their asses and ended up their lives dying alone in small apartments, just them and their hate. It’s sad, heartbreaking, but everyone has a limit.
Fanatic people don’t respect boundaries, so yeah you have to set them and enforce them when it gets too much to deal.
I’m sorry to hear about your father.
He’s what in Brazil is called a Bolsominion. He was in the military during the last leg of the dictatorship and was shock full of prejudice until his 50s… My childhood sucked. But slowly and carefully I tried to show him that learned prejudice had little basis on reality and he seemed to evolve into a better person with age. Then Bolsonaro comes and it’s like those parts of his brain that only understand hate were like a river that dried and now received a new flood of “the hate was right”. To make things worse they trained him to say that “I know what you will say and it won’t change my mind” and it’s like hearing a recording being played into his head, it’s creepy and sad. It took months to make him accept being vaccinated thanks to Bolsonaro’s fear and hate mongering and I had to live with the fear of losing my dad to Covid for more than a year. Thanks to my therapist I didn’t break from the stress.
He’s not dumb, he has a doctorate degree, and just seeing him parroting conspiracy theories hurts my soul.
Yes, exactly right.