Saturday, May 19, 2012

How to handle a Conspiracy Theorist

How do you handle a conspiracy theorist?

If you know someone (friend, family member) who is a conspiracy theorist, sometimes it's just best to let continue to believe in the conspiracy theories they believe and not argue with them about it, because even reasonable people can become very upset and angry if you tell them that what they believe isn't real.

Most people who believe in conspiracy theories usually only believe in one or two, and in most cases, these beliefs do not affect their lives at all, and usually they won't bring the subject up at all unless someone else brings up the subject first.

Most of the time their most hostile arguments are actually on the internet in some message board forum, or the comments section of a news article or a blog. This is all that this is of course, just talk. Once they have vented, they'll just go back to their normal, everyday lives.

But what if their lives aren't considered normal?

What if they live in isolation due to their paranoia? Or have a total lack of, or even have no respect for the laws or law enforcement what so ever? Or engage in unproven, dis-proven, unhealthy, or even dangerous medical practices?

If this does occur then it might be time to get involved.

Many people might believe that isolating them is the answer, but really this might just led them to becoming more paranoid and more convinced of their beliefs.

The best thing to do is to keep communication with them as much as possible, and to give little hints that what they believe is wrong.

If you believe that they are suffering from mental illness, it's best to, in the kindest and gentlest way possible, suggest to them that they seek mental health treatment.

If they are definitely mentally ill, and they are talking about committing acts of violence, then you need to contact the local authorities and have that person committed, because, as it has been shown in the past, people whom very seriously believe in conspiracy theories, and are seriously mentally ill, can commit huge acts of violence.

Fact is, is that you can not just leave a person who seriously believes in conspiracy theories alone. As tempting as it might to stay away from them, if they truly need help, isolating them won't help them at all.

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