This is quite frankly one of the most shocking and truly sad storiesI have even encountered. A student survived the Stoneman Douglas school shooting in 2018 where 17 of his classmates were killed and 17 others seriously injured. That by itself is traumatic, but what has completely and totally ripped his family apart is that his father has fallen down the QAnon rabbit hole and as a result, believes the shooting was staged and did not really happen. He accuses his own son of being paid to stage it all.
This has all emerged because Bill, not his real name, posted his story to a Reddit forum that deals with QAnon survivors, and it has gone viral. He posted it as a rant among people who are also affected by and deal with QAnon, and did not expect more than a few hundred to actually read it.
Bill Tells his story
Sorry if this is long but I gotta get it off my chest..
I think my dad has gone fucking insane. It’s going way too far and I have trouble processing the last 5 months. He’s always been very conservative, but now QAnon has consumed his life to the point where it’s tearing our family apart along with my mental health.
Back in January he saw the video of Marjorie Taylor Greene harassing David Hogg (anoher student) about the shooting being a false-flag operation, and while my dad was already into Q, he’d never gone down that particular rabbit hole and now he’s convinced everything was a hoax and it breaks my fucking heart
He’s done “extensive research” on body language and claims he can tell the shooter is a radical commie actor who was paid to sacrifice his life in order to remove our guns. He’s questioning why they released the interrogation footage if not to further deceive the “sheep believing everything they see”. He also says the trial will be rigged and the reason they’re talking about the death penalty is to prevent him from ever talking just in case.
What’s really fucked is a that he knows I never want to hear about him or see his face ever again. I’ve been very clear on that and I always leave the room when he starts talking about him. I keep telling him to please, please fucking stop but there’s no reaction or empathy whatsoever.
Even burgundy colored T-shirts (what he wore) makes me uncomfortable and he used to be so understanding he stopped wearing it around me. That person is completely gone and I miss him so fucking much.
“You’re a real piece of work to be able to sit here and act like nothing ever happened if it wasn’t a hoax. Shame on you for being part of it and putting your family through it too.”
He’ll say stuff like that straight to my face whenever he’s drinking and I wonder if he’d still say it if he knew what it does to me. It’s bringing back so much of my survivors guilt and I fucking hate him for it. I worked on it for so long and now I once again feel like the biggest piece of shit for being able to have good days when there are parents still grieving.
I can’t take more of him berating me and purposely trying to trigger me to see if my ptsd is real or not. He’s seen me break down and cry my eyes out multiple times which I never ever did before. Sometimes I wonder if he’s hit his head or had a fucking stroke because I almost can’t believe it’s the same person. What the fuck is QAnon doing to people??
My breaking point was yesterday when I borrowed my little brother’s iPad and saw he’d searched for some really bad things related to the shooting.
I practically begged my mom to give my dad an ultimatum to get professional help or move out. She’s really timid and hates confrontation, so all she said was to try not being home as much and wait it out.
I have no fucking idea how to deal with this. It’s too painful for me to keep living like this, hearing his name almost every single fucking day and being accused of accepting money to be part of it. Even if my dad magically snapped out of this Q bullshit I don’t think I’d ever forgive him for putting me through this when I was just recently starting to do relatively well. So fuck him for that and fuck QAnon and Marjorie Taylor Greene for ruining my dad
Edit: Even though I’ve definitely felt like it I don’t think getting physical would do any good at all. I instead try to remind him to look back at the texts I sent when I was 100% sure the shooter was about to enter our classroom. I ask him to look me in the eyes and still argue I’m able to fake what I wrote in those messages but no luck
Once it went viral, was published by Vice (Who fact checked, directly spoke with him, and verified it all), the comments poured in. Most expressed empathy, but some did not, so Bill felt the need to add the following …
I know it’s not the majority, but anyone accusing me of using my trauma to spin a story, fuck you. This was literally just a hastily written rant I thought would reach at most a couple hundred upvotes. I never planned this blowing up and I never personally contacted the media
This is really fucking important to me. However terrible you imagine it being, double that. Way too much of my high school experience was dealing with this shit. So BELIEVE I’d never make light of it because you have no idea what the fuck you’re talking about. You watch the interrogation footage and he just seems like a braindead, child-like moron who’s too fucking stupid to know what’s going on. He is, but he’s also a literal fucking demon. I’ve never seen determination like that in my entire life, and there’s A LOT people don’t know. So fuck you for thinking I’d minimalize that experience by making a joke of it
Go through this sub and you might realize what QAnon is capable of doing to their own family. They’re delusional fucking people trapped in a cult. There are literal anti-vax nurses. Brainwash is real.
At the same time I know my situation is a bit different and I really don’t know what’s going on with my dad. But no matter the reason it won’t change that I need him out of my life so don’t mistake me on that. I’m just trying to make sense of it, and for those saying it’s too insane to be true that’s fine, but then I guess consider any of these. Going off of what people told me might be possible: coping mechanism to convince himself it never happened rather than continue struggling with secondary PTSD and coming to terms with his son going through a school shooting. Especially because he knows pretty much everything. It really could be anything, but still, fuck him for what he’s putting me through.
Another one I’ve been told is brain tumor or lead poisoning (apparently it’s normal with boomers??) All I know is he’s never really been the same since the shooting. The pandemic messed him up and lately it’s just gotten worse. Or maybe he actually just had a mental break and has gone fucking insane. Who knows. Will probably get back with an update if I do find out
Normally I’d add additional commentary, but in this case no. I’ll let Bill’s words stand without further comment.