yknow i was talking to someone a week or so ago and he kept using the word “triggered” in reference to LoL/online gaming etc.
now, i’ve had this guy in class before and overall he seems like a pretty good kid so i was equal parts perplexed and irritated by his use of this. i told him he probably shouldn’t be using that word in that context, and he didn’t seem to be getting it and kept arguing back that he was using it correctly. eventually he got to the point where he pulled up the definition of it on urban dictionary and explained why he was using it
“yes,” i said, “that is the way it’s used in the gaming community, but the fact is that it’s a word used for a legitimate thing in psychology and people using it in that way has taken it away from those who need it to describe things that happen wrt, for example, PTSD. now people who are legitimately ‘triggered’ get treated like a joke.”
“oh,” he said. “I had no idea that’s where it came from.” and he more or less backed off after that
and ive been thinking a lot about that recently.
about how if i should just started out with, “hey i’d rather you not use this, and here’s why,” that conversation would have gone a lot smoother than just my flat out insistence and non-explanation of why he shouldn’t
because people grow up using words a certain way, or learn to use them from communities and may not even know how they affect other people around them.
like i definitely could have left the conversation and decided i didn’t want to deal with it, that would have been valid, but i really wanted to figure out why he was using it and see if i could get him to stop rather than immediately deciding he was just a shitty person and a lost cause
it’s usually best to start off a conversation by assuming the person is benevolently ignorant and go from there