Social Question

Jude's avatar

Why is it that some people "have a thing" for gross bodily secretions (and other stuff)

Asked by Jude (31977 points ) August 26th, 2011

Subcutaneous cysts – watching someone pop one of those suckers; peeling off what was once sunburned skin (Goldmember); checking out someone else’s tonsil stone removal online, popping someone else’s blackhead; why do people enjoy seeing all of that?

My Dad had a huge Subcutaneous cyst on his back; we were camping, and my Aunt (who is a banker and a proper lady) nearly tripped over her own damn feet to have a look, as my sister (who is an R.N.) was ready to incise the cyst and squeeeze!

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45 Answers

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

@Jude Thanks. That was so disgusting it made me laugh.

ANef_is_Enuf's avatar

I dunno, but my mom has a thing for removing other people’s blackheads. I watch surgeries and stuff online, but I’m fascinated by all things related to health care.
George Carlin has a skit about the weird little things we find on our bodies, and how they fascinate us. I think he was on the right track.

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

What a great question!

I’m going to take a wild guess based upon personal experiences. Some people aren’t grossed out by the icky, nasty stuff that our bodies do, like your sister the RN. Some of them are curious about it, like your aunt the banker.

Then there are parents. I’ve known a few who freaked out at the sight of weird body functions of their child, but adjusted after time. A very young niece started having a heavy, constant flow of gooey snot. When I moved in with them, the sight of it made me gag. After a few months, I could wipe it away with my fingers if a tissue wasn’t handy and not bat an eye.

wundayatta's avatar

These people have serious problems and probably should be locked up and the key thrown away.

Yeeeeeeeeecccccchhhhhh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

and I’m eating breakfast, too. This should have some kind of warning. NSFW or NFFH (not for faint hearts). This question makes NSFW look like daycare. Groooo-oooss

Mariah's avatar

I think it’s just curiosity. I personally do not like seeing these things but I can understand being fascinated by what the human body is capable of; I don’t think it suggests that a person has “problems.”

ANef_is_Enuf's avatar

@Mariah I agree. I think it’s pretty normal stuff.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

Now I want to see the pics and the vids.

WillWorkForChocolate's avatar

I can watch surgeries all day long without an issue. In fact, a friend of mine “accidentally” posted a trans MTF surgery on FB and I ended up watching it. It was fascinating to see how they removed a penis and created a clitoris. Parts of it may have grossed other people out, but it was just neat to watch.

I couldn’t handle watching ruptured cysts or peeling off skin though. <shudder>

Jude's avatar

Personally, I don’t mind watching them (online), but, having someone squeeze a cyst in person? No, I couldn’t do it. I have a weak stomach and the smell would get me. I heard that they smell awful.

Blueroses's avatar

I became immune to things like aspirating cysts while working in a veterinary practice. I wouldn’t seek it out but it doesn’t bother me.

Far, far worse is when you go to lance a simple abscess and a living parasite (worm, beetle, maggot) pops it’s head out. Now THAT’s horrible!

ANef_is_Enuf's avatar

@Blueroses no, what’s horrible is getting it out.

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

NFFH I have no idea what is being removed from this person’s toe, but the whole video is disgusting on many levels. Link

augustlan's avatar

I don’t know, but I’m one of those people. I’m a pimple popper, myself. If my husband had a sebaceous cyst, I’d be the one to open that puppy up, for sure. I know it’s gross, but I can’t seem to help myself. I asked a question about this a long time ago, and someone posted this link popthatzit.com. It’s like pimple porn, and made me feel a little dirty for watching. :p

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

You guys are so gross you should be disgusted with yourselves. But it is a nice distraction from Irene.

augustlan's avatar

<cries>

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

@augustlan I didn’t mean to make you cry. And I did give you one of those three GA’s that appeared simultaneously.

augustlan's avatar

Haha, I gave you one, too. We are gross! :)

FutureMemory's avatar

I feel a lot less gross after reading this thread.

Symbeline's avatar

@Blueroses Oh man, if some worm popped its head out from somewhere in me, I think I’d die on the spot.

Otherwise stuff like that doesn’t bother me one single bit, but I wouldn’t rush to go pop someone’s zits or yank out blackheads. Maybe it’s some way people have of caring for people, kinda like how your parents would have you blow your nose after you cried or something. Maybe it’s the nurse/doctor syndrome, where it’s an interest, and maybe it’s like when you take a big dump, and can’t help but to look in awe/fear at the beast you just passed.

ANef_is_Enuf's avatar

Hahaha @Symbeline, that was the funniest post ever.

augustlan's avatar

It’s kind of like the ‘grooming’ that chimps do, I think.

Symbeline's avatar

@augustlan Hey yeah, that makes sense.

Blondesjon's avatar

I think it stems from childhood.

Like the old jokes goes, what’s the difference between boogers and asparagus?

You can’t get kids to eat their asparagus.

snowberry's avatar

@Pied_Pfeffer I believe that was a bot fly larvae but it was very small. They did not spell parasite correctly in the title. Maybe we should mod them!

Bellatrix's avatar

The question doesn’t bother me and I think it is quite fascinating. Why are some of us intrigued by icky things. Personally, I am a bit squeamish. I have no desire to pick or prod anything gross. How many people slow down at road accidents though to see if they can see something awful… We are a weird mob!

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

@snowberry I don’t know what it was, but the dirty fingernails and the fly attracted to the wound was enough to weird me out.

@Bellatrix I agree…we are an odd lot. On one side of the spectrum, there are people who kill humans and eat their remains or store them in a freezer. Then there are those that grow pale and possibly faint at the sight of a body fluid, much less see or discuss it.

I can handle a fair amount of gross body gunk, but I don’t think I could become an EMT (Emergency Medical Technician} without having a physical reaction.

Bellatrix's avatar

OMG OMG OMG… EWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW

I have to say, that must be true love. I would not be able to do that for my husband. No way.

ANef_is_Enuf's avatar

That looks like a boil, not a “pimple.”

Bellatrix's avatar

Could you do that Neffie? I couldn’t!!!

ANef_is_Enuf's avatar

Yeah, I definitely could. Doesn’t bother me at all. I would wear gloves, though. ;)

Bellatrix's avatar

I would vomit. I really would.

ANef_is_Enuf's avatar

That’s okay. I feel that way about feces. I’m fascinated by the inside of the body, blood, gunk, that sort of thing doesn’t affect me. Feces? I would be gagging like the woman filming.

Bellatrix's avatar

My husband has no sense of smell at all.. I am so thankful for that.. any icky job, he is totally cool with. Me I am gagging at the first sign of ick.

ANef_is_Enuf's avatar

@Bellatrix maybe that is it, because it is odors that get me before sights. I am sensitive to smells, though. I think you’re onto something! :)

woodcutter's avatar

A woman out of the picture watching who was gagging was hilarious. The lady doing the “procedure” seemed to know what she was doing.

And the empty beer bottles, must have been part of pre-op, but for who?

Symbeline's avatar

@Blueroses Goddamn, those are some nasty buggers. Those wounds look pretty cool though.

augustlan's avatar

That was a cyst, not a pimple. I’ve actually done that for my best friend (it was right in the middle of her back, and she couldn’t reach it). In the end, though, she had to get it surgically removed. I’d wear gloves, too, but would be able to do it again.

snowberry's avatar

I would do/have done gross stuff before. I have lancing infected toenails down to a science. Also, my sense of smell is not that good regarding gross stuff (can’t smell rotten meat or vinegar much), but perfume and cigarette smoke will drive me right up the wall. (Go figure)

FutureMemory's avatar

That video was just horrible…dear god…

augustlan's avatar

@FutureMemory That was nothing… check this one out. Even I was grossed out. Still couldn’t look away, though.

woodcutter's avatar

For some reason I think they shouldn’t have had the roaster there in the background. I would have moved it. Nice puss vid A+

FutureMemory's avatar

@augustlan Looks just like whip cream shooting out…I had no idea it could get that severe. NASTY. Someone should make sure Wunda sees that.

deni's avatar

Ew. I’m one of those people. Well just zits and sunburn. There is just something soooo satisfying about popping a big one (LOL) I chase my boyfriend around the room to pop his face. He hates me. I am very manipulative with zip popping too (i’m laughing really hard typing this) He’ll say “stop it! it hurts!” and i’ll say “shut up no it doesn’t!” ....oh man I’ve got to work on that

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