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  1. #11


    I agree with the concept that the two main reasons are an assertion of power, as is humankinds way of rising above another and the fear of losing that power.

  2. #12
    Senior Member Saslou's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009


    I would like to *hope that people are not intentionally mean but rather they have issues such as insecurity, childhood trauma's etc which make them behave the way they do as they have not been addressed. Those who have been purposely mean to me, i try and look at their behaviours and *hope that karma bites them on the ass to the power of three.

    *hope is not reality though.
    “I made you take time to look at what I saw and when you took time to really notice my flower, you hung all your associations with flowers on my flower and you write about my flower as if I think and see what you think and see—and I don't.”
    ― Georgia O'Keeffe

  3. #13
    null Jonny's Avatar
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    Sep 2009


    Entertainment, social gain, to combat feelings of inferiority.

  4. #14
    Senior Member Beargryllz's Avatar
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    Jun 2010


    Assertions of dominance are to be expected by social animals, and these assertions are rarely well-received by the losing party.

  5. #15
    & Badger, Ratty and Toad Mole's Avatar
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    Mar 2008


    Quote Originally Posted by Beargryllz View Post
    Assertions of dominance are to be expected by social animals, and these assertions are rarely well-received by the losing party.
    Yes, that is why various societies have complex and subtle ways of expressing dominance and deference.

    And the way of expressing dominance and deference are different in different societies.

    And where the ways of expressing dominance and deference in our own society are taken for granted, they is all but invisible in other societies.

    And this is why we have continual misunderstandings between those from different societies.

  6. #16
    Senior Member StrawMan's Avatar
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    Jan 2010


    Some people are selfish and weak. They aim to feel more powerful by putting other people down, and lifting their own rank in the social pecking order.

  7. #17
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2009


    Some people try to get other people to feel their emotions for them because they cant handle the emotions themselves, like the kid who someone laughs at who immediately turns to another and makes them a laughing stock instead. Affective idiots.
    All for ourselves, and nothing for other people, seems, in every age of the world, to have been the vile maxim of the masters of mankind.
    Chapter IV, p. 448. - Adam Smith, Book 3, The Wealth of Nations

    whether or not you credit psychoanalysis itself, the fact remains that we all must, to the greatest extent possible, understand one another's minds as our own; the very survival of humanity has always depended on it. - Open Culture

  8. #18
    Senior Member Moiety's Avatar
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    Aug 2008


    Lack of empathy coupled with not being given enough affection.

  9. #19
    darkened dreams Ravenetta's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    4w5 sp/sx


    People are mean when they have a constant need prove and validate their own sense of power. (as others have said)

    Quote Originally Posted by Beargryllz View Post
    Assertions of dominance are to be expected by social animals, and these assertions are rarely well-received by the losing party.
    It is important to note that the categories of "mean" and "dominant" are not synonymous. Dominance is also a quality of charisma and positive reactions. Social creatures require cooperation, so intentionally harming one in a group requires a net positive response from that group. Meanness is also alienating by nature, and very often alpha animals are granted their position by their natural dominance of strength and capability and not simply their willingness to harm other members of their community. An alpha that is too "mean" will tend to absorb the resources of the group and cause its destruction. Regardless of how strong or mean a single member of a group may be, in social animals there is always the possibility of the group joining together to resolve the imbalance of power, so that can place a natural limit on "meanness".

    Example: We have three large dogs that are of dominant breeds, and so our family functions much like a dog pack. My role is to assert dominance to be one of the alphas. This requires raising my voice at times and demonstrating strength. This is to impose order because I know myself to be the capable leader. There is nothing in the dynamic that is related to a desire to harm. Many times alpha animals instinctually know their capabilities and that their pack will survive best with them as leader and so their show of strength is in place for a net effect of help for the group. The more submissive members of the group do not accept this strength with personal suffering. Dominance is often reassuring just as it is for children who suffer when a sense of order and capable dominance is not demonstrated.

  10. #20
    The Bat Man highlander's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    6w5 sx/sp
    ILI Ni


    I think there are many possibilities. My theory is that several things may be at play:
    - they are unhappy people and misery loves company
    - they have been hurt in the past and are treating others in the way they have been treated themselves or are taking this hurt out on others
    - they are insecure and are mean to others to feel more powerful or secure
    - they lack empathy and may not even aware they are being mean
    - they are a sociopath
    - their ego and sense of self importance is out of whack

    These are a few. I think there can be lots of reasons.

    Please provide feedback on my Nohari and Johari Window by clicking here: Nohari/Johari

    Tri-type 639

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