During the last years a specific type of human being has been really “trendy”. It spreads day by day, more and more, in alarming level. More and more people “resign” (or finally show their true selves) and become members of this specific category of people. This category consists of the “haters”. Are you familiar with this name? Do you know them? Have you ever met them? Maybe you are one of them? Or you are not sure about anything, right? Great, so let’s start from the beginning. First of all, what is a “hater”?
According to the Urban Dictionary, somebody is considered as a hater when “simply cannot be happy for another person’s success. So rather than be happy they make a point of exposing a flaw in that person”. With this definition I believe that it is easier to understand about which type of person we speak. We speak about this “friend” who saw us happy one day and he/she said the wrong and not the right thing (by accident of course!), we speak about this girl in the University who couldn’t find another student dressed in a more beautiful way than her, we speak about this colleague who was hearing the “bravos” from the others to us and he was saying “You have many things to learn if you want to be good in your job”, we speak about this annoying person in YouTube who couldn’t find anything positive in 10 different songs from the same singer or group and that’s why he/she wrote negative comments in every of the 10 songs. You understood it correctly. Haters are everywhere around us. In other words everybody could be a hater, every person who spends his/her life “poisoning” lives of other people, but above all, their life. “Is somebody who is jealous about the others?” we can wonder. Not, exactly. Again, according to the Urban Dictionary “Hating, the result of being a hater, is not exactly jealousy. The hater doesn’t really want to be the person he or she hates; rather the hater wants to knock someone else down a notch”. That explains why it is really difficult for a hater to change his/her mind or his/her behavior. If it was a matter of jealousy maybe a hater could mimic, namely he/she could be jealous but at the same time he/she would try to “reach” that who made him/her to feel jealous. However, the hater has no intension to “go” or to “move” anywhere better and he/she don’t want to succeed anything good about him/her. He/she will remain in his/her position and he/she will continue to hate.
Different kinds of haters
If we want to see more specifically which people could be called haters, we should search for the basic kinds of haters. This job was made in a humoristic way from the journalist Ann Friedman. She created the pyramid of haters and she put different kinds of haters in different levels. Instead of the “light” and slightly ironic style of this pyramid, Friedman gave some really valid categories of haters. Maybe the most important of them was the category of “trolls” because this is the most well-known category of haters, especially (and initially) through internet which is used from billions of people.
Trolls are officially “entities” of internet since ‘90s. They were identified from online gamers and really quickly the first articles were written which were informing the internet users about how they should identify and cope with trolls.
A troll is usually an anonymous internet user who logs in a website and intervenes in a conversation in an appropriate way. Trolls are considered as “really clever” and usually there is not an easy way to be identified from ignorant internet users. At the beginning they are considered as people with different/opposite opinion from most of the people. However, their opinion is not kindly expressed. It is absolute and intense; it is obvious that it exists in order to create some reactions. Really soon some people will “react” on troll’s opinion and from that moment on the success of troll’s intervention starts. The troll is “fed” and the conversation follows a different direction, which was wanted from the troll from the beginning. Actually, this is the only goal of trolls: they want to change the subject of the conversation, they want to make the people discuss their own subject and they want as many people as possible to be occupied by them.
Methods that are used from trolls in order to troll:
- They mock the initial subject of the conversation
- They bother co-speakers with their comments
- They answer in a personal style to the others while the conversation is general and it is not applied to anyone
- They don’t provide their true identities in order to avoid their identification, expulsion, ignoring or becoming a target from other internet users who already “know” them from previous discussions. That is why they try often to refresh their identities.
The only way to avoid or to get rid of trolls is by ignoring them. If nobody will ever answer to their words, then slowly they will lose their “power”, they will quit and probably they will pull out from the conversation. We should always be careful because of their ability to “mutate”, to change character, identity and arguments. In addition we should always be careful for a possible co-existence of trolls into a conversation, where one troll helps the other troll, while no one of the other co-speakers knows about this co-operation. Let’s keep in our minds that nowadays there are many professional trolls who are paid to work individually or in groups of trolls and their basic goal are to sabotage peoples’ different opinions or interests e.g. employees of a company trolling services of another competitive company. Of course there is a basic difference between a professional troll and a simple troll: a professional troll does his job and nothing more, but the simple troll feels that he/she gains something when he/she ruins a conversation. However, the perception of a professional troll, that he/she can troll if this is a proven advantage for his/her job, cannot be considered as ethical.
Finally, we should have in our minds that the last years the words “troll” and “trolling” are not exclusively used by the internet users but also from many other people in their everyday life, because in the past trolls were found into the websites, but now they “show up” in companies and they destroy the conversations and finally the mood of the others.
How is a hater created, why he/she keeps hating and what can we do about his/her behavior
If we want to research the behavior of a hater basically in a psychological level, then the first that we can hypothesize is that we speak about a person who had a big “fight” with love. In other words, a hater chooses to hate and express in a negative way about every success of another person he/she will see, he/she does not consider that there are some precious elements that he/she should recognize to other people (except in the cases that he/she could gain something) and in general he/she doesn’t feel almost never the need to share a positive emotion with other people. In this case we could end up believing that this kind of a person finds difficult or impossible to love another person. “I don’t have time, energy, or interest in hating the haters; I’m too busy loving the lovers” says the author Steve Maraboli who is stating indirectly but clearly that haters are in the opposite “side” from those who love.
But why somebody feels hate? What happened to him/her? Where is the love that should be “included” inside him/her? Is it possible to have emotions of love but in a distorted way, namely hate? And if yes, how this was happened?
If we see this subject only in psychotherapeutic and psychoanalytic terms only one answer can be given to the previous questions: a human being mimics until some age and after that age he/she produces things that he/she heard/saw/felt/learnt earlier in his/her life. Earlier, when? When he/she was living with his/her family. And this is almost always, unfortunately, the source of the good and the bad that each one of us carries in him/her. The results in the behavior of the kid and the future adult depend on the quality of the “work” of the two parents regarding their relationship with their kid and the amount of love they gave to him/her. How many are the possibilities a hater not been loved as much as it was necessary and in the way it should be? Unfortunately, there are many, because it is not possible for a human being to start suddenly hating everybody. Moreover, except of the fact of love, we should wonder how many times the value, the ability and the success of a hater were challenged in his/her childhood. If a kid was never rewarded, never heard good words from his emotionally full parents, never proud for the things it made (few or many), never full of happiness about its success without somebody to make it feel immediately worse, then how is it possible for a kid to learn to feel happy when the others succeed something? How a kid will learn to love the others and their achievements? How a kid will smile when it will see the others smile? So, maybe a hater is just a person who learned to hate since he/she was a kid and now it is too late to change. Maybe all the others are the wounded self of the hater and maybe through hating the hater loves wrongly himself/herself and tries in vain to cure his/her “wounds”. “To hate everything is to be wounded by everything” wrote the author Marty Rubin explaining that the haters are not bad but deeply hurt individuals.
“What can I do about a person who hates everything?” somebody will wonder. The answers regarding to this question could be really a lot and have to do with many factors. It depends on who is the hater (relative, friend, an unknown person etc.) and regarding to that there are many different ways to face a hater:
- 1st way: Show him/her your love. This “trick” is really difficult to be successful but you don’t lose anything if you try once. A person who hates deeply would find it difficult to start loving but with patience and tenderness he/she could decrease a lot the anger towards others.
- 2nd way: Go away as much as you can (if you are not really related with the hater, it would be easier). A person who keeps hating is “toxic” and you will figure it out much more quickly than you think. A person like that will take all your energy, he/she will make you feel bad, he/she will not recognize anything of the good things you made regarding to them and in general. You will be tired because of the continuous trying but he/she will never be tired to hate you, as he/she hates everybody. Are you still with this person?
- 3rd way: If you find the chance, have a conversation with the hater. Tell him/her that you have understood what he/she is doing. If he/she judges everything in a negative way, then you have also the right to judge his/her behavior. Don’t give back the hate that he/she gave to you but tell and show to him/her that his/her behavior is intolerable. You should clarify again and again that there are not the others who are losers, but he/she is the only person who keeps demanding things from everybody except himself/herself. Finally, you can wish that one day he/she will understand his/her faults and he/she will ask for help, from an expert.
Instead of an epilogue
Haters are not a new category of people. They always existed, but in our days it’s simpler and easier to “locate” them because now we know their characteristics and we have easier “contact” with them through technology (e.g. trolls). On the other hand we should not forget that really often we also communicate with the “others”, with people who love, who can say “bravo” to the others, who have beautiful thoughts and speak with beautiful words. People who love always existed, too. They co-existed and keep co-existing with the haters. The important thing is not which of these two groups has more “members”. The important thing is that every individual is free to choose where he/she wants to belong. Despite the experiences in the childhood, the family memories and the background feelings that every person “carries” in his/her adult life, there is always the final personal responsibility which is the most important factor regarding to where we are going in this life and who we will be in the future. So, maybe the most important fact is not what kind of person somebody have chosen to be, but the fact that he/she chose consciously and with the knowledge that there is always the other “side”, in case that he/she will change his/her mind and the route of his/her life.
Read more about “haters”:
- Quotes about haters: http://www.goodreads.com/quotes/tag/haters
- Urban Dictionary – “What is a hater?”: http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=hater
- Haters As A Leading Indicator Of Success – ReadWrite: http://readwrite.com/2013/02/25/haters-as-a-leading-indicator-of-success#awesm=~ocwclsyTpLsQ8y