What is making so many incels? Is it a generational shift, or just always been the case and they now have a platform?

What is making so many incels? Is it a generational shift, or just always been the case and they now have a platform?

What do you think?


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  1. Incels have been around forever, just not hanging out and feeding off each other. I went to high school in the 90s and there were dudes that were just as sad and lonely as the incels we have now, they just didn’t have a forum to militarize them. Beavis and Butt-Head, for instance, were 90s incels. Had someone added some fuel and fire to the mix, they would have become like today’s incels, except, you know, in cartoon form.

  2. few things

    – ubiquitous access to porn (and extreme porn) that was pretty unimaginable even in the 90s creates an entirely self centred expectation (even addiction) in some young men

    – lone social isolated people have always existed. i think the reality is that some of these people are neuro-divergent (various places on autistic spectrum for example). some are helped and some are not and develop acute anti-social behaviour

    – people with fringe views are now not isolated but have access to online communities where sometimes the more extreme the view, the more it’s pushed to the top. e.g. ‘leaders’ in the incel community espousing extreme and hateful views that indoctrinate others who would otherwise be more moderate

    – the change in social structure away from patriarchy towards equality has raise the expectations of male behaviour from being able to make demands and presumptions to having to approach relationships on equal footing. in the past this may have hidden some of the narcissistic behaviour we now see – it may even have resulted in marriages that “worked” (in so much as sometimes women accepted a patriarchally determined role for them to fulfill) whereas now it exposes the male individual as dysfunctional

    – the role social media has started to play in shaming people who are not the most popular, not the most well dressed, not the coolest and who may well have been able to conduct a perfectly fine relationships in the past, but now is acutely aware of how internet society considers them a “failure” or a “beta”. the insatiable desire to compare and to judge has made many people unhappy with how they are even though there’s nothing wrong with how they are. it’s made women (and men) more selective of what they expect from partners (which in itself is fine, but has raised the bar on the effort required to be “datable” than perhaps what it was in the past where you were expected to follow the well trodden and understood footsteps of your parents generation)

  3. It seems to me to be largely the indoctrination and right wing radicalization of young neurodivergent men. Largely through the mechanism of providing them communities.

    Edit: I’m an autistic man, and saw several communities I was part of undergo this radicalization. One that drove any dissenters away with sheer weight of abuse.

  4. Many women work and can support themselves, so they don’t need to get married ASAP like they did 50-100 years ago. Also, we generally have higher standards because we aren’t willing to be seen as men’s property anymore, nor to constantly give men everything they want at our own expense. A lot of incels have very hateful and misogynistic views, which probably partially develops over time due to resentment, but I think it’s often a big part of why women aren’t interested in them in the first place.

  5. The social media algorithms make them. Extreme views find their place in Facebook groups and then those groups grow larger and larger.

    If you make a burner account you can find all kinds of racist groups, incel groups, just the worst people. In a normal society norms are enforced by everyone, you don’t have norm enforcement in social media.

  6. It’s far easier to be a social outcast now with social media and the Internet, so there is less pressure to conform to society which means odd views fall into extremes with less impact.

    Combine this with women getting more equality than before and the incel culture is born, blaming anything but themselves for social deficiency.

    I mean, by the strict definition I’m an “incel” myself, but being able to be described by the word and subscribing to the culture is different. I just get depressed, I don’t blame women for having preferences.

  7. Because words don’t really have meaning, and any insult just becomes a label for whoever doesn’t agree with you. There are so many because people see enemies in anyone with a slight difference in beliefs and label them that.

  8. I don’t understand why people correlate inceldom with extremist views.

    Involuntarily celibate people have always existed, be it by social isolation, neurodivergence or the affect of many ways of trauma.

    Of course there’s no denying many (way too many, in fact) incels hold very extremist views, but i don’t think it should be correlated.

  9. 1: Division between the sexes. Relations between men and women are more tense than they’ve ever been in modern days. I want to be clear and say that there are some good reasons for that; the old ways had flaws and they needed to be addressed. A temporary side effect of that, though, is the feeling of tension between men and women nowadays. Women want the sensation of liberation and choice they were denied for years. Men want partners more than ever now that supply is lower now. I could talk about where I think all that is going but that’s talk for another time.

    2: Social anxiety, particularly towards the opposite sex. Many people avoid direct contact with others due to texting and the internet. For some that can be harmless, but for others it can become a protective bubble that keeps them from escaping their comfort zone and improving socialization. There is also the stress they feel to both understand women while also feeling stress to “possess” a woman. The two form a stalemate that leads to inaction.

    3: Fear of sex. With people losing their virginity at older ages in recent years, there is a sort of comfort in knowing they aren’t alone. In turn, the prospect of sex becomes a hyperinflated enigma in their mind. It becomes a massive trophy; one that takes a momentous amount of effort to achieve. As losing virginity becomes a bigger goal for them, they tend to overthink the process, making mistakes or even deluding themselves.

    All in all, it’s become a peculiar sort of trend. I don’t think it’ll go away too soon, but it will go away once relations between genders grow stronger.

    EDIT: I checked my sources and it turns out, people are actually losing their virginity younger than they used to. I really had thought I saw another graph stating the opposite, but… Them’s the breaks, I guess.

  10. Simple, the internet.

    Young dudes feeling like outsiders in a society they feel doesn’t accept them has been a thing for a long time now. The only recent change is they now have a place they can easily find and radicalize each other. That just wasn’t possible pre-internet.

  11. People are unable or unwilling to accept the fact that they are the problem, and seek any opportunity to blame someone else for their misery. Basically the whole world right now. As soon as someone comes around with a validating theory that “you are the best” and “you deserve this and that” and “they are working against you, denying you your rights”… welp. Easier to blame than to fix.

  12. In retrospect, I felt like one for a bit when I was like 14. But it was the early 90s so there wasn’t a word for it. But also, by 15, I had a girlfriend and all was well. It was just a little faze mixed with confusion. There was nobody to encourage my thoughts and indoctrinate me.

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