So, I could’ve just answered this quickly with something like “because we get hate ALL THE TIME” or even ignored it, but you got me thinking about something that has bothered me since I first stepped into this fandom and I feel like this subject needs a bit more attention.
I’ve been part of many fandoms over the years, and they were all fairly different. Different genres, different types of media, different types of audiences. But they all had one thing in common - ship wars. And no matter how minuscule or widespread the ship war was in the fandom, no matter how many ships there were, no matter if the ships were canon or not, the fights all had the same basic formats. “Ugh, how could you ship them, they have no chemistry!” “They’re not even gay!” “How could you possibly ship those two when these two are so much better?” “What? Those two barely even know each other!” Or the ever present shallow arguments like “ew he’s ugly though” or “ew he’s too old!” etc etc. You’ve all seen them, you know them all too well.
They’re always the same arguments, and they will always incite anger. Because we care about our ships. It’s our passion, it’s our hobby, it’s often our main source of social interaction. It’s really fucking important to us, so we get upset when someone decides to shit on it. We tend to take it personally. It happens, it will always happen, and we all do it.
But the reason why Wincest shippers might seem extra defensive? Because the ship hate pointed at us has nothing to do with our ship. The attacks we get are very personal and are directed at us as human beings instead of the validity of our feelings about fictional characters.
Some of it isn’t so bad, albeit repetitive and obnoxious. But aren’t all shipping arguments? We’re constantly told “but they’re brothers!” as if we either weren’t aware, or that stating it bluntly will somehow dislodge some missing sense of horror. And often we’re asked if we have siblings, because surely only a single child could ever ship wincest and we just don’t understand how siblings work.
But the real problem is that it often gets downright cruel. We’re called disgusting, we’re called psychos, we’re called perverts, we’re told that we’re fucked up. I’ve seen some absolutely horrible things said to wincest shippers over the past year and a half that I’ve been in this fandom. A mother getting messages saying that someone should take her children away because surely someone who ships wincest will violate their children. A girl getting a message accusing her father of molesting her because surely those who ship wincest must be romanticizing a past trauma. Countless messages telling wincest shippers to kill themselves because the world would be a better place without such sick perverts in it. Blogs getting hacked into because we shouldn’t be allowed to post about our disgusting ship. Multiple people harassed so excessively and called so many horrible things that they end up deleting their blog, and the perpetrators of the harassment going to other wincest shippers and gloating and saying they’re next as if they have some kind of hit list. We’re told we need therapy, we’re told we need to educate ourselves, we’re told we need to go die.
So yeah, we get defensive.
More often than not, we either ignore it or laugh at it, because we’ve heard it all before. And it’s most likely never going to stop. The fandom is ever-growing, new fans popping in every day. New, often young people who have never encountered ships that cross the threshold of what they consider to be taboo, and it freaks them right the fuck out. And yeah, we understand that. We don’t expect everyone to be okay with it, we understand how society as a whole views it. But when those people think it’s okay to send cruel things to people or deliberately bash us on our posts, thinking that somehow they have the highroad because they ship something else and choose to use their words to specifically try to harm us? Yeah, we get defensive.
I just want to impress upon everyone out there that it’s O K A Y to not like a ship. No one’s making you like anything, no one demands any such nonsense. Like what you like, dislike what you dislike. No one gives two shits and fuck if you find wincest disgusting. Whatever man, that’s fine. But leave us the hell alone with our ship. It makes us happy [or miserable, let’s be honest here], we’re not hurting anyone or ourselves, it brings us together as a community, and it inspires us to make fanart or write fanfiction or what have you. There is literally no reason whatsoever for you to be so cruel to others simply because you don’t approve of the things they enjoy when those things don’t affect you or anyone else in any conceivable way. When you turn something as silly as a ship war into a full-blown personal attack, when legitimate bullying of the cruelest nature comes into play, it’s time to step the fuck back and think about what you’re doing. You’re actually lashing out at someone, specifically TRYING to damage them emotionally, simply because you find the FICTIONAL RELATIONSHIP they like gross.
So, anon, I kinda got carried away there with my response to your question, and I do apologize for that. But I hope I clarified things for you, and welcome to the fandom. Sorry everyone is so angry all the time.