Personal testimony - trigger warning: torture.
I remember being about 14 or 15 years of age, over half a lifetime ago for me so far, sitting in an English lesson given to us by the deputy headmaster at my old high school. I can't remember exactly what the topic that day was, or precisely what it was we were talking about that led up to this, but the life (and death) of King Edward II, and how he (according to legend) met a nasty end to his life by way of a (TW!)
(TW!) red-hot poker shoved up his anus, entered the discussion. As you can imagine, I was absolutely horrified! I cringed in terror at the prospect, this poor man! But guess what - the rest of the class, every single one of them, including our teacher, were laughing heartily! "Hurr durr ass anus, hot poker hurr durr". This only amplified just how much of an already-terrible experience this was for me just hearing about it, and it was shocking to witness this lack of empathy, en masse, over one of the most painful experiences a human can go through, and did go through (allegedly, in the case of Edward II)! It was a very alienating and lonesome experience, as well. This was one of the many times (and not the first, either) where I could confidently say to myself (if you would forgive the hyperbole), "I am nothing like any of you people. You and me are not the same, we are not the same; you and me, we are not the same, no way..."
The only comfort that came with this experience was the idea that this story, along with it's many disturbing details, could all have been just another urban legend. However, if it really did not happen to King Edward II, then likelihood would suggest that, surely, it would have happened to at least one other person at some point in history...
"If it can happen, then it has happened, and it will happen again..."