People get uncomfortable, when addressing a few tactics they have to gain attention, or ways they blame other people for the state of their affairs or how they constantly wait for someone to show up or take action; they cringe, because I bring up the word victim. No one wants to see themselves as a victim.
There’s a certain power in being a victim.
A way to seemingly control others.
Our society constantly invokes victimization as the way to live.
Specifically, if we’re not paying attention, we end up on the drama triangle (the three points are the victim, rescuer and perpetrator). Most soap operas, love songs, fairy tales and movies have the triangle as the story arc and we get hooked into thinking this is some sort of reality; we buy into it.
And….just for fun….when we’re on this triangle, we usually switch points, sometimes we’re rescuer in the same situation or persecutor with the same person.
Unfortunately, living as a victim is something many of us do unconsciously.
It shows up insidiously.
In deriving a strange pleasure from someone mistreating us, we get oddly excited (if we’re honest), because we’re getting our power back from them.
We induce guilt. Guilt is a master manipulator. Manipulation gives a false sense of control. Next time, pay attention to someone ‘fucking-up’ and how we now feel we can punish them for what they have done. Sound familiar?
It’s really a painful way to live, usually we’re completely oblivious to this being a pattern…we think it’s just ‘how we feel.’
It’s a cycle, in which, we think, ‘if only they would change, or I’m always waiting for them to do blah, blah, blah,’ except, we don’t really want them to, it would defeat the purpose of us being able to stay as a victim…‘poor us’ against this brute of a human being.
Being a victim is a strategy. We learned it when we were young. It’s a way of getting something, attention, or blaming someone (or something) else for how we feel. If we hold something outside of us accountable, we falsely believe, we’ll feel better than if we take responsibility.
As a kid, it helped in getting love, attention, value, or to not be abandoned…though, these were just strategies, GIVING the ‘appearance’ of having power.
Many of us still use the same strategies, we had as small children…we’ve had years of re-affirming beliefs about ourselves, which keep us locked into this victim dynamic.
In reality, we should not try to wield power over another.
Empowerment doesn’t come from others being accountable to us or being locked in a power struggle. We never do have power over anyone or anything permanently. Ever.
Perhaps, we get an apology, or someone tries to make up for being a jerk….we still never really feel fulfilled and the other person, more than likely is sitting on a land mine of resentment toward us. It’s an inauthentic way to live, which means we will always feel shitty and as though, something is missing, almost all the time.
Who does this triangle actually work for and how do we get off?
It works for those who see no other way. And by ‘it works’ what I mean, is they continue to survive their lives, never really living. Their voice is null and void, unless it’s whining, complaining, manipulating or looking at us as though we just beat up a puppy. This is not happiness…and it’s not the road there either.
The first action is to hold ourselves accountable. Screw holding anyone else (even if they do what we want today—tomorrow they can do something else-WE CANNOT CONTROL OTHER PEOPLE) accountable. Look at where we blame someone else for a shitty situation. What is our part? Why do we allow it? What are we really trying to get? And what do we want outside of us to change?
The second action is to ACCEPT. Look at everything as it is, good, bad and ugly. Just say OKAY, because wishing it or someone would change–is like staring at a mountain and wanting it to be a moose.
The third action is keep trying to accept and notice where the resistance inside of us is located. What don’t we like about the situation? Where is that reflected within us? Find the pain. The outside is a reflection of our inner world…whatever we resist, persists…so we start loving ourselves as we are and we feel more peaceful.
The fourth is to see our truth. Where do we lie to ourselves? What makes us think this is the way to survive? Can we see another way by taking responsibility and making choices, in alignment with our heart? Love is always there—the more we love ourselves, the more we can actually listen to our truth.
Fifth action, comes from knowing number 4, 3, 2 and 1. Set boundaries. Decide what is acceptable to us and what we want our life to look like…then, WE MUST LIVE INTO IT. It’s not up to others to respect our boundaries first, it’s up to us. And boundaries are NOT walls or something to beat others up with, boundaries are a statement of our standards for living. Period.