Is there a word or phrase for a feeling of expecting self-pity?
January 17, 2018 10:20 PM   Subscribe

Wondering if there's a term or phrase, in any language (c'mon, German) for that feeling of... when you're expecting a letdown, bad thing or disappointment, but you're almost looking forward to the wallowing in self-pity you'll do as a result.

Like.. "I bet no one will remember my birthday, and I'll be all lonely, and later they'll remember it and feel guilty, poor me" or "I hope this relationship is great, but I bet this person is going to be a jerk like all the others, and I can go home and cry and eat ice cream and not have to try for a second date."

.... or am I the only one who thinks like this?
posted by The otter lady to Writing & Language (14 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
I have to think there’s something like this in The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrowsthis entry comes close, anyway.
posted by armeowda at 10:34 PM on January 17, 2018 [5 favorites]

Oh, I know that feeling so you are not the only one. I think it's one of those weirdly satisfying workings of depression. It gives anticipation! and validation! Except it's negative anticipation, and the validation is that one was right to be a pessimist. And the self-pity is deliciously justified.

I hope there is a word or phrase. It could be like 'the pleasure in anticipating justified self-pity', or something.
posted by Thella at 12:04 AM on January 18, 2018 [1 favorite]

Ah yes, the self-fulfilling prophecy of doom gambit. My fave.
posted by h00py at 12:07 AM on January 18, 2018 [3 favorites]

Best answer: I call this "being Eeyore."
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 12:26 AM on January 18, 2018 [9 favorites]

i call this being an alive human in 2018
posted by poffin boffin at 12:33 AM on January 18, 2018 [2 favorites]

Looking California / Feeling Minnesota
posted by mannequito at 1:20 AM on January 18, 2018 [2 favorites]

posted by Crystal Fox at 3:10 AM on January 18, 2018

In German you also say "sich im Selbstmitleid suhlen" = "to wallow in self-pity". Sorry, no perfect compund word :)
posted by Fallbala at 3:33 AM on January 18, 2018

I think that that is already self-pity.
posted by umbú at 5:27 AM on January 18, 2018 [1 favorite]

My great-aunt used to call it "throwing a pity party"
posted by Green Eyed Monster at 5:28 AM on January 18, 2018 [2 favorites]

Preemptive pity party. Waiting for the other shoe to drop. Catastrophizing. Self-schadenfreude. None of them really fit perfectly, but maybe by their powers combined...?
posted by helloimjennsco at 6:57 AM on January 18, 2018

Best answer: Anticipointment
posted by neda at 9:34 AM on January 18, 2018 [22 favorites]

Zukumpft frolich salz wasser weinen.
posted by Oyéah at 7:52 PM on January 18, 2018

Best answer: I might suggest Selbstschadenfreude. I don't know if that is a word that is actually used much in German but it is certainly completely comprehensible--'taking joy in your own misfortune' or something along those lines.

It looks like I'm far from the first clever person to think of this: 1 2 3 4 (all English, however).

Here is one actual German reference that seems to use the term in approximately in this sense.

This article on talks a lot about various related words and mentions how selbstschadenfreude might fit into that spectrum.

This would capture the meaning of enjoyment of your own misery or suffering, but it doesn't really capture the aspect of looking forward to future enjoyment of your own misery or suffering.
posted by flug at 10:42 AM on January 19, 2018 [1 favorite]

« Older Podcasts to sleep to   |   Dimmer controlled light never gets more than 95... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.