Automated/fake encouragement can be worse than saying nothing

I used to belong to an on-line writing group, where people were supposed to post their daily progress and give feedback on others’ posts. Though the whole point was to increase accountability, community, and support, what I often received was the opposite of that. I’d get messages saying “You rock!” and other empty crap on days when I hadn’t accomplished anything at all.

On the internet I’ve been seeing random messages like “You are loved!” pop up as if this is supposed to help an otherwise hopeless/suicidal person feel better, but for me, this is like putting salt in a wound of loneliness. If “love” is just computer-generated sap expressed by someone/something who doesn’t even know me, then what the fuck would make it worth living for?

Showing up, listening, being real – these things can really matter and help. But empty expressions of praise and love are the opposite of caring, and only make a mockery of what accountability, community, and support even mean.

3 thoughts on “Automated/fake encouragement can be worse than saying nothing

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