Schadenfreude: Feeling Happy at People’s Misfortune

Schadenfreude-noun-satisfaction or pleasure felt at someone else’s misfortune.

I Am a Schadenfreude Person

I can be a schadenfreude person.

Sometimes I feel guilty, but I accepted it because I’m not the only one who does it. People watch reality shows because it makes them feel better about themselves.  Sports fans delight in the loss of their team’s opponent. So is being schadenfreude really ‘bad?’

Yes and No.

Waiting for People to Fail

If your schadenfreude reaches where you can’t function unless that one person, thing, animal, etc. fails, then you may have a problem. I recommend writing your angry thoughts in a journal, telling someone you trust, going to a therapist, writing what your grateful for, or if possible (meaning the last resort) tell the person you have resentment towards how you feel. I’ve had this situation where I wanted the person and persons to fail so badly that I became unbearable. I don’t recommend being schadenfreude for a long time. It hurts the heart and mind.

Feeling Schandenfreude is Not Bad

Feeling schadenfreude is not bad if someone hacks your bank account, and you lose a large amount of money. Its natural and justified to wish the hacker bad karma.

There is a positive for schadenfreude. By people telling each other their problems, they feel less alone. When I have a problem, I want people to tell me their own misfortunes and how they fixed it so I don’t beat myself for making the mistake. I want to be reminded of its okay to be human.

I don’t see the cliche ‘Misery Loves Company,’ in a negative light, but in a neutral light. If misery were a person, I would sense deep loneliness. Rather than write Misery off, I would tell it my own adversities and how I pulled through so it realizes that everyone has problems.

Don’t Beat Yourself Up

If you feel schadenfreude, its fine. Don’t beat yourself up. I feel it and most everyone has felt it once in a while. The best advice I can give is questioned why you feel harm towards the thing or person. Is it fear? Anger? Inadequacy? Revenge? Once you start questioning, you may see it become smaller.

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