Generation TikTok have decided to short-cut their way to fame and fortune by faking serious mental health conditions en masse.
This might sound like a strange way to make a living, but it is the natural consequence of a society that promotes victimhood as a profitable virtue. For those looking for a way to feel ‘special’ but are too lazy to work hard and achieve something meaningful, filming a thirty-second video displaying a rehearsed split personality disorder (#alters) and the near-indistinguishable dissociative identity disorder (#DID) – where each ‘identity’ has its own pronouns – or even an exaggerated Tourette’s tic guarantees instant stardom.
In a way, it’s a relief. The alternative is that we are in possession of an entire generation of raving lunatics rather than charlatans.
The existence of this ‘mental illness’ trend serves as a terrible reflection on the quality of Western Civilization. Gone are the days when people sought ‘excellence’, ‘perfection’, and ‘greatness’ – or at the very least to ‘better themselves’ as a measure of achievement. Forget basing success on hard work and physical accomplishment – creating something or performing a useful function in society has been shrugged off…
It’s possible to explain this partly through the lack of responsibility experienced by young adults. For most of history, humans at the age of 19 – if they’re still alive – have been working for over a decade, are probably married, and have children to support. In 2022, the biggest decision many of these kids make on an average day is what flavor coffee they’re going to UberEats to their door.
That said, there’s nothing stopping them from picking up a book or doing something constructive. So, why don’t they?
Faking mental illness sounds like a fringe activity for the truly desperate, but there are hundreds of thousands of teens and pre-teens on TikTok engaging in some degree of victimhood fantasy. #Health has over 20 billion views, with the vast majority of faked illnesses consist of OCD or ADHD – although plenty progress to more click-baitish conditions.
It started in the same way as trigger warnings, pronouns, and absurd dietary requirements. Over a decade ago, tweens realized that they got more sympathy and ‘privilege’ if they listed a series of ‘conditions’ after their handle on various social media platforms.
When writing fanfiction, they’d add all the ‘triggers’ that upset them to demonstrate how emotionally fragile they were and hint at some kind of secret trauma. On Instagram, it was ‘cool’ to parade a list of virtuous allergies (yes, if you were lactose intolerant your body was somehow genetically superior because it was ‘anti-dairy’). Then came the ‘I’m so special I need unique pronouns’ mob until finally, usernames contained a nauseous sprawl of virtue such as: ‘they/he/it ADHD CIS vegan climate justice! Triple-vaxxed double-boosted BLM commie’.
The followers these teenagers amass through victimhood performance art often elevates them to a level in the social hierarchy somewhere between circus freak and ‘influencer’. With enough equally delusional followers, they can transform their self-indulgent fiction into real cash and so, with the monetizing of victimhood complete, these impostors have learned a terrible lesson:
appropriating a medical condition is the perfect scam.
We used to call this ‘fraud’.
If someone pretends to be dying of cancer in the real world and uses this claim to extort money from a generous public – they go to jail. It’s a criminal offense. When TikTok tweens do it, they pocket the social credits – even after they are outed by enraged parents who discover their little darlings having bizarre ‘conversations with themselves’ in the height of a faked split personality psychosis.
This contagious ‘mental illness’ trend is a re-run to the LGBTQ+ social movement that made fringe sexualities ‘cool’ and – more importantly – profitable. This explains why the ranks of genuine LGBTQ+ people have been inflated by crowds of young people who have never expressed anything close to clinical gender confusion or alternate sexual preferences.
To ‘belong’ at school these days, you can’t be a boring ‘cis’ – you have to be ‘bi’ or ‘curious’ or ‘trans’. It’s asexualized peer pressure encouraged from preschool by a combination of self-interested educators, a Marxist curriculum, and parents that see their kids as a way to gain attention. The concern is that these kids will find themselves on the path of medical transformation if they fall into the arms of the eager medical community.
While time will sort out any kids accidentally caught up in gender confusion, the rise of faked mental illnesses is something that can be resolved pretty much immediately.
Why aren’t the authorities cracking down on victimhood frauds? The power of ‘Woke’ is strong enough to frighten the law.
Questioning the validity of someone’s mental condition in the ‘my truth’ and ‘believe all women’ world of 2022 is nearly impossible. In the UK, police door-knock people who dare to like an inappropriate tweet or cause ‘offence’ by refusing to use imaginary pronouns, but when it comes to faking a disorder? No authority will touch that because even the suggestion that someone’s mental state is ‘not real’ is a violation of their own ‘offence’ regulations.
This job is left to the parents, most of whom have no idea what their kids are up to online.
The real victims are the genuine suffers of these mental disorders. They previously used social media to connect or share awareness, but have since been drowned out by impostors using cartoonish exaggerations of the illness, leaving real suffers considered ‘boring’ in comparison – or worse – accused of being fakes.
What started as a game was made much worse by the pandemic where the creators of this content found themselves isolated and locked up for months on end. Naturally, they entered a victimhood arms race with each other, vying for attention with ever-more absurd mental illnesses.
TikTok has had no luck cleaning up this scourge. Aside from there being little from TikTok to gain from removing followers, the entire social media world is skewed toward encouraging victims and protecting their speech. The idea that they might be questioned, scrutinized, or challenged simply isn’t part of the functionality. It takes seconds for ruthless algorithms to remove a conservative speaking up for freedom, but it’s doubtful a mental illness faking teenager would ever be challenged.
Ultimately, the question is not, ‘Why do kids pretend to be victims?’ We know why. It brings them fame and fortune.
The real questions is, ‘Why does modern society reward victimhood?’
Is this a cultural accident and an unintended consequence of a naturally caring nature? Or are we being manipulated by a sustained social campaign launched by activists who make an absolute killing out of extorting cash out of sympathy?
I’ll let you decide.
Alexandra Marshall (@ellymelly on Twitter) is editor of the The Spectator Australia, and a political opinion commentator for Rebel News Australia, The Good Sauce, Penthouse Australia, Caldron Pool, and is a Sky News Australia contributor. She is also an AI database designer for the retail industry and a Young Ambassador with the ACM.ALL AUTHOR POSTS