Note: this article contains no links to the forums mentioned because these guys get bullied enough. Search them out if you like, but be nice.
I am a serial lurker. I lurk all sorts of places I ought not be – MumsNet, forums for marriage problems, Jezebel comment threads. I am very curious about these other worlds. One of the places I lurk is incel forums.
I find them entertaining, not in a cruel way, but in a genuine way. Sometimes those guys can be extremely funny. One notable post described how the OP accidentally drank his own urine (long story), and the comments that followed were hilarious. At least one other member confessed to doing the same thing by confusing his bottles by his bed, and then another member demanded to know why suddenly everyone was pissing in bottles. There were several other funny comments that rely too heavily on in-jokes to explain here. For the initated: “It’s over for pisscells.” “Incel trait: drinking your urine.” Bwahaha.
Another funny case was when the OP said that he’d ordered a sex doll. Someone asked if he was going to marry it, and he said that no, he didn’t want to get divorce raped by a doll. He mentioned he wanted to change its generic name, someone suggested ‘Ritalin’, and he solemnly agreed that he would so name her.
One site conducted an extensive survey of its members, and the results shed a lot of light on inceldom.
The biggest standout was age: 8% were 14-17 years old, 31% were 18-21, and 28% were 22-25. That means around 67% of the self-described ‘incels’ are young, some very young. This is further evident from the many members who complain in the forum about bullying or social failures in high school.
If you are twenty-one or younger, you can’t really call yourself incel, and anyone under eighteen certainly can’t. The reality is, most young men and boys are not having much sexual success. It may be worse now than it used to be, but even when I was a kid the attractive girls mostly had older boyfriends while only a few of us lads were getting much action. Of those who did, a smaller proportion were getting something regular rather than a one-off drunken encounter some time ago that they were struggling to repeat.
Boys always think all the other boys are getting heaps of sex, but not many of them actually are. Many boys are late bloomers who take time to fill out, gain confidence, get established and manage to find a proper girlfriend. There is nothing freakish about this at all. Indeed, in normal circumstances I don’t think you can call yourself an incel until your early 30s, because that is when we tend to come into our own.
When I was young and not getting any, I had never heard the term incel. I’m glad I hadn’t. It makes normal ugly ducklings and shy boys worry there’s something wrong with them, when all they need to do is keep busy and grow into life. That said, there are some differences between normal lads who are struggling to get their love lives started vs the types of people on these forums, and I’ll come to that.
Ninety-three percent said they ‘believe in the blackpill.’ That is, they think there is no hope for them. Seventy-four percent considered their incel status as permanent, and the same percentage are not optimistic about the future. Being so young, that is likely to be irrational for most.
Only 14% reported being happy. Eighty-seven percent think incels are not dangerous, their average height seems slightly shorter than average, 59% report constant depression and 74% report constant anxiety or distress. Sixty-one percent had considered cosmetic surgery, and report physical appearance as the biggest cause of their woes. Second comes self confidence/social anxiety, followed by lifestyle (too much time indoors), physique and status. Sixty-eight percent said they had seriously considered suicide.
Some of these factors might be common and timeless for any group of young men, aside from the few, early-maturing ‘Chads’ who tend to be popular in high school. However, some attributes here are unique, and point to what their underlying problems might be.
While only about a quarter report suffering from autism or deformities respectively, about 69% still live at home. About half say they have no friends. A massive 95% report having missed developmental milestones. And now we’re getting closer to the truth.
Many posts complain about factors adjacent to their romantic difficulties, notably a lack of money, driver’s license, or even a bank account. Few seem to have much travel experience, even within their own country, and very few report much of a life outside the online world or computer games – hobbies, sports, business, politics, religion, or anything at all. Reading the forums, it seems that the old term ‘failure to launch’ suits them – they have not managed to make the jump into adulthood, and they themselves are not sure why.
Some complain that they’re too old to be taught how to open a bank account, or that they lack the confidence, or don’t have the coordination for driving and have failed the test. Many seem extremely uncomfortable socially at work, making promotion difficult. I can relate to these issues – when I was young, I felt like I was trapped in a cycle of immaturity because I could not seek out new experiences and challenges for various reasons.
There are hints that these men are a little quirky, to say the least. One talks about how he had just about fallen in love with an AI messaging app, singing the praises of all the simulated attention he was getting, only to dump the app a short time later when he discovered that his electronic girlfriend couldn’t do maths, which bothered him. One OP asked what members would do if they had ten million dollars, and the most popular answer was that they would stop working and get a really nice house with an awesome gaming setup. Few had bigger ideas than this.
In addition, there are clues that the social skills and attention to important social cues is often missing among these men. One reports how his colleagues were picking on him, but in his description it seems more like they were trying to give him some friendly (if misguided) advice. In another case a man claims he attended a singles event and was expelled by security after daring to speak to two women. There is a chorus of condemnation of ‘foids’, as they call women, until finally someone points out that there must be more to the story and asks for further details. The OP did not respond.
One OP talks about his plan to buy a sexbot once he has got his prostate out, and how he’s going to take it on a cruise and has checked with the company and they say it’s fine. Everyone asks for technical details about the doll, or bemoans their lack of money to do the same, but no one asks him the obvious question – are you okay? Do you have prostate cancer? What is the prognosis of this treatment?
In the most disturbing example, the OP describes how he was continually abused by a 17 year old girl when he was 13. As the story continues it becomes obvious that both families involved are completely messed up in allowing this poisonous situation to continue. Seemingly apathetic chavs did not see anything wrong with the boy regularly staying over at the girl’s house, even when he came home physically injured. But none of the other members commented on this.
Though the average incel might not be autistic, their thinking tends to be unusual, and they are sometimes so obsessed with minor details that they miss context.
When it comes to cheat codes for getting sex, they seem less than enthusiastic. Some report seeing an escort and usually do not enjoy the experience, while others say they don’t have enough money. Some object to “paying a foid for anything.”
As for moving to a country with richer pickings, some members worry about being the victims of a rip-off, or their girl becoming Westernized upon return. One says, “I don’t want a barbarian partner.” Another says, “Women are disgusting creatures I no longer want one as a gf or wife.” A few are more hopeful.
Looking beyond the face value of these comments, it seems that these are men whose problems culminate in them not having girlfriends, rather than men whose main problem is not having a girlfriend. They all have various issues surrounding education, work, socialization, confidence, fitness and so on that limit their ability to make the most of their lives.
In some cases the forum degenerates into self-destructive pessimism. Often this involves describing in minute detail their facial imperfections, scornfully deriding anyone who dares to suggest that it might not be the end of the world. In others, there is serious discussion about trying to improve their situation through cosmetic surgery, fitness, status, money, or other attributes.
The most heartening post I saw was by a member who announced he was leaving the forum. He said that having vented for a year or two, he now wanted to focus on improving his life in any way he could, and accepted that this might or might not result in eventually getting a girlfriend, but he didn’t want to miss out on life in any case. He promised to stay in touch with members he’d gotten to know personally via private messages.
There were a few grumpy responses, but most members were supportive and wished him luck. I thought, this guy seems to be heading in the right direction. He seemed to have fairly strong social skills compared to many others, so he might just make it, whatever ‘making it’ may turn out to be.
This article is mostly information for normies who are curious about this dark world. However, it is likely that some self-described incels might visit this post. I am hesitant to offer advice – just look at my life – but I feel a responsibility to offer a few general tips, given I was a very late bloomer myself.
This is the best I can do:
- Nobody knows the future. It might be good, it might be bad. Don’t pretend to know how things will go down.
- Instead of trying to get a girlfriend, focus on more basic problems – getting a bank account, a driver’s license, a job, some savings, moving out of home, eating well and getting fit. Then level up your life: read good books, study something in your own time, travel, go bush.
- Once you’re making progress on those, focus on improving your social life. Why not start with a meet-up of your forum buddies? Nothing major, just meet at someone’s house, talk shit, play games, watch a film. Move on from there to other clubs or activities that get you out and meeting a broader range of people.
- Finally, accept that the fellow I wrote about at the end had it right – it is important to get out there and live your life, even if you don’t know whether you’ll ever find much romantic success. Focus on achieving your own goals (not girl-related), and make the most of what time you have. Hopefully the hoochimamas will follow, but if not, at least you got out of the basement.
I won’t say any more because there’s much better advice out there than what I can give you. But good luck. I hope you find what you’re looking for.
Update: Admin at one of the forums asked me to link. Here ’tis:
Also, here is the link to the discussion page I posted about this article:
Normies who visit, be sensitive. Some of these guys can’t take the sort of roughhousing commentary we enjoy here at the People’s Blog.