The Disliked Person

An under-considered type of person.

Posted Jan 21, 2018

MaxPixels, CC0
Source: MaxPixels, CC0

Even among people who live scout values: honest, hard-working, thrifty, blah-blah-blah, there are many people who aren’t hated, just disliked.

Maybe they talk too much or too little, are too intense or too phlegmatic, too aloof or bombastic, too liberal or conservative, or are simply ugly. Yes, the word is ugly. We’re not allowed to say that word but some subset of the population isn’t just unattractive but ugly and, in turn, more likely to, by we "nonjudgmental" people, be disliked.

Unfairly disliked people may justifiably feel aggrieved. As mentioned, they may display the virtues exhorted by teacher, parent, cleric, boss, hypocritical politicians and in mission statements. Yet disliked paragons enjoy far less professional and personal success than do their inferiors— yes, inferior, another one of today’s no-no words in our but superficially egalitarian era.

So what do such unfortunate people do? Most start by trying various tactics to fit in. But such people aren't likely to tweak their way into acceptance. There’s something woven into their DNA that’s as difficult to replace as a gene. (Actually, thanks to CRISPR-Cas13, changing a gene may be easier.) So these people come to believe they’re hopeless and so shrink their world ever smaller: They work more in isolation and replace group hobbies with solo ones: book clubs with solo reading, rock group with solo guitar, softball with working out. And they hang out more with their parents and/or the only other mammal they can count on for acceptance—“man’s best friend.” Harder-edged people prefer the insouciance of a cat.

Alas, such a life eats at a person. So they’re increasingly sad, including predicting that their death will be marked mainly by indifference and even unspoken relief-- “I won’t need to deal with him any more.” The person might picture his funeral as attended by just a few people, most there because of obligation, not affection. The service would be only as long as to appear respectful. And voila, the world has washed its hands of the person and can return to mainstream peeps.

The takeaway

If you are generally disliked, do you want to confront someone, change something about yourself, or shrink into ever greater seclusion?

If there’s a person you know whom, on reflection, is more worthy of your favor, professional or personal, should you apply your professed tolerance, your celebration of diversity, to that person? Or need you confront the reality that you're as judgmental as the political "fools" you hate?

I read this video aloud on YouTube.