posted on Mar, 21 2007 @ 10:29 AM
'It' (victim status) is really 'yesterday' as far as Life (travelling through Time and Space) is concerned.
When we're children, most of us tend to believe that one wonderful day, we'll reach the Perfect Age, when everything will be as we wish it. Of
course, time does not stand still: we cannot apply the brakes when we reach 19, 21 or whatever comprises our personal interpretation of the Perfect
Age. Each year is the same duration as all those that preceded it.
We strive for 'perfection'. When we reach the height or weight we desire, our hair or skin goes 'wrong'. And so on. Few of us attain our view
We may be subject to rape or physical or other violence or discrimination or embezzlement or betrayal. And these offend us: they rob us and scar the
Perfect Us/Perfect Life we were striving to create. They remain like a stain upon the mental map of our lives that we carry in our heads. Often,
someone else was responsible for 'ruining' us.
Because we carry these visions of personal perfection, most of us feel "Oh well, that's it. I'm ruined now. I'll never be the same. There's no
use going on." It's the way we felt when some kid ran along the beach and jumped on the sandcastle we'd spent an hour constructing. So mean ! So
When we're children, we might cry out or run sobbing to our parents.
As adults, our response is the same. Someone is responsible. And we want this damage FIXED. We want things to go back the way they were BEFORE
someone or something damaged/destroyed/ruined us.
The truth is, of course, that Life is a journey. It's not about perfection or even completeness. It's an experience. It just is.
Years ago, someone reminded me that experience NEED not be categorised 'good' or 'bad'. Instead, if we can manage to regard whatever occurs
merely as 'experience' --- without the positive/negative tags --- we can get through/survive just about anything.
That advice did me the world of good.
The temptation to get 'stuck' at the point of -- shall we say 'unfortunate' experience -- is strong. We were raped. Others are not raped.
Therefore we are to be pitied and sympathised with. The person who did this to us should come back and fix it -- undo it. We need it to be
'fixed'. We need this stain/scar on our life-experience to be repaired/removed.
But of course, this cannot be. Time does not run backwards.
And while we remain 'stuck' at what we consider an inerradicable chasm in our life's journey --- Time continues to tick by.
Also, the longer we remain 'stuck', the less flexible we become.
In the end, if we're not careful, we allow the incident at which we became a victim -- to DEFINE us, as in: ' See that woman over there? Well, she
was gang raped by six thugs.'
Yes, there are experiences that hurt us. It's natural to cry, to scream, to hide, to fight, to consider dying.
But we're resilient by nature and we should ALLOW ourselves to be just that.
Quite often, people succumb to a victim mindset because they feel it's EXPECTED of them, as in the case of: ' That woman was raped by six thugs.
She must be changed by an experience like that. Only a hard-case would be able to get over it.'
I suspect that many people feel they will be judged insensitive, callous, were they to 'recover' and 'get over it' in less than x-number of
So -- often -- people 'play' the victim because they believe this is the 'respectable' thing to do. If a woman recovered well from rape and began
dating again, she might feel others would believe she was in any case a slut. If the parents of a murdered child recovered from their loss and
decided to get on with life in an 'unacceptably brief' time, they may fear others would regard them as unloving, unfeeling parents.
Rape, ethnicity, severe misfortune, etc. are often portrayed in the media as being of grave and negative influence in peoples' lives. People are
influenced by the media and by the opinions and beliefs of others. This often leads to people 'acting out' whatever they believe is the appropriate
response to their particular misfortune. So victims are created, quite often, intentionally or inadvertently, by society.
Recently, an Ebay seller emailed to say: " I'm so sorry I messed up. Sorry I didn't send your items. You see, I was sexually abused as a child
and I'm still trying to deal with that and all the strain of my two boys and my husband and my Ebay business." In this instance, we see someone
who uses her experience as a crutch and to manipulate.
What can we DO with experiences with the potential to make us feel as 'victims'? Can we deposit them in the bank? Can we use them to hold back the
passing of Time? Can we wield them as a weapon? Can we use them as insurance against future painful experience?
No. Ultimately, all we can do is acknowledge them and then release them as we move through Life (aka Space and Time). These things do not define us
and we shouldn't fall into the trap of letting them do that. Life was not designed to be a fairy-story. How could it be when it involves creatures
of flesh, blood and nerve endings: creatures that have a limited life-span living on a beautiful but dangerous planet? We're going to experience
events that hurt. They're a natural and unavoidable part of life.
Years ago, people were instructed to 'Stop feeling sorry for yourself'. Then came the 60s and 70s when thousands of self-help books and
psycholanalytical gurus encouraged virtually EVERYone to feel like a victim. Coming as it did during an affluent period following stiff upper lip
austerity, it was a novelty: an unexpected permission to dump personal responsibility and to well and truly Feel Sorry for Yourself.
So I really appreciated the 90s with it's terse, to the point: ' Get Over It ' advice.
There's nothing happened to any of us that didn't happen thousands of times before to others. We have a choice: Wallow In It or Get Over It and Get
On With It.
The 90's coined another gem, come to think of it: 'What doesn't kill you only makes you stronger'.
The fact the human psyche assertively pushed aside in the 90's the programmed and crippling victim-mindset of earlier decades is evidence of the
strength of the Life Force, as are the posts in this thread.
I think we might be seeing the demise of victim mentality. If so, we'll all be stronger for that.