Nobody wants to be a victim….or so I thought.
I love defining commonly used words to make sure we all mean the same thing.
Full Definition of VICTIM1: a living being sacrificed to a deity or in the performance of a religious rite
2: one that is acted on and usually adversely affected by a force or agent <the schools are victims of the social system>: as
a (1) : one that is injured, destroyed, or sacrificed under any of various conditions <a victim of cancer> <a victim of the auto crash> <a murder victim> (2): one that is subjected to oppression, hardship, or mistreatment <a frequent victim of political attacks>b : one that is tricked or duped <a con man’s victim>
I was very puzzled as to why someone would want to be a victim. This was a concept introduced to me by my first counselor. He explained by embracing victimhood a person blames someone else for all their problems. A victim does not take responsibility for their own actions. They incorporate learned helplessness. Pitifully begging for help because they just know they can’t do anything for themselves because they are a victim.
Wise geek shared interesting insight into what they termed victim psychology. http://www.wisegeek.com/what-is-victim-psychology.htm
Like a deer in the headlights, victim psychology can paralyze a person and prevent him or her from making logical decisions. Being so caught up in how unfair a situation is, a person may be unable to think of ways or actions that could solve the problem. Instead of determining how to fix an issue, arguments or problems can quickly dissolve into accusations of blame, which is generally helpful to no one.
I liked this article. I also watched an example up close and personal. This person practices at looking pathetic and helpless which then seems to provoke a come-to-the-rescue action from people around her. She then thanks them profusely all the while knowing she got someone else to do her work. My counselor pointed out the behavior because it is something I do sometimes. If I am starting to feel helpless, I may be slipping into victim mentality…helpless, cringing, blaming, filled with shame the list goes on. I don’t want to be that way. The solution is one of my favorite poems:
God grant me the serenity
To accept the things I cannot change;
Courage to change the things I can;
And wisdom to know the difference.