Hatred is the number one social infection and it’s more common than anyone realizes.
Some of us just hate people on principle. There’s even a name for general hatred toward human beings: misanthropy.
Gustave Flaubert – the Frech novelist who wrote Madame Bovary – claimed that he would
…die of suppressed rage at the folly of his fellow men.
That made Flaubert the ultimate hypocrite because no man, including him, is without folly. But I’m sure that didn’t stop the hatred. Hate is not concerned with hypocrisy. Haters just gonna hate!
Are you a misanthropist?
Here are some signs that you hate humanity.
1. You know you hate people.
This may be the simplest sign. You already know you hate people and tell yourself (and others) how much you can’t stand everyone. Done. If you not in denial of your love for humanity, you’re a misanthropist. Congrats.
2. You feel urges to escape.
Oh, you might call this social anxiety, but I have a working theory that so much of social anxiety is suppressed hatred toward people. You subtly tell yourself how people will not like you. They judge you. They’re gonna hate you, right? But this is little more than casting your hatred upon others and punishing yourself with it.
3. You get wonky because of normal people things.
Like waiting in line, engaging in small talk, and mixing it up at a cocktail party. These are all things people do. You get to the store, grab your grub, and head to the checkout line. Oops, it’s a long line. And you’re instantly pissed. These idiots in front of me will take all day. You hate people for being in a line ahead of you. This is no reason to hate anyone unless you’re a misanthropist.
4. Forecasting doom and gloom
So you’ve got some people stuff to attend to and you begin predicting a bunch of b.s. that probably isn’t going to happen.
- God she’s going to be late and screw up the evening.
- I shouldn’t have to do this for him.
- Why do I get stuck with these schmucks who can’t do anything right?
5. You don’t enjoy people for who they are
Imperfect beings. That’s what people are. Maybe someone isn’t as smart as you. Maybe they don’t have certain skills that you have.
The hidden danger in hating everyone…
Yes, hatred for humanity can destroy civilization as we know it but most haters aren’t dangerous to anyone but themselves. The lurking vulnerability is to your health.
Hating everyone is at direct odds with being a person. We’re social beings. Unless you become a hermit, you live among people and must interact with them. You need others to survive. So you play along, suppressing your seething rage toward others whom you can barely stand.
The suppressed rage causes ongoing stress at every encounter with others. The hatred is always there, threatening to pop up and cause real damage. You can’t act on your misanthropic impulses or you’ll end up in jail. Push them back down. They pop up again. Now you’re in a stressful tug-of-war with yourself.
Your existence is an ongoing dilemma. It sucks! You could even end up hating your entire life.