Monday, July 20, 2009

Am I A Victim?

Why does this always happen to me? How come any partner I choose ends up doing the same things to me that the last one did? Why do I find myself in the same relationship over and over again?

What do these three questions have in common? They all allow us to believe that we are the victim. In that role, we give our power away. How did we come to be the victim? What are we getting out of this role? What can we do to over come this pattern in our lives?

We may have come to see ourselves as victims through the lens of co-dependency. During a time in our lives when we lived with dysfunctional people we may have truly been a victim. We may have been a young child incapable of independence who needed our family system to survive. We may have been in an abusive relationship. We may have been genuinely hurt as a result of some past event.

If we didn't realize how we had adapted to survive these experiences, we may have become comfortable in the victim role. We may not realize we are feeling like a victim, but our language gives us away.

We may feel empowered in our capacity as victim. We may be using our role to passively control others and outcomes. In our past we may have needed to rely on our ability to manipulate through victim hood to ensure our survival. Now that we no longer live in that same family system, we have not yet realized how our victim identity has affected our current circumstances. In essence we continue to re-create the same dysfunctional familial dynamic in our new relationship by maintaining our victim status.

Once we realize our pattern and come to grips with the fact that we are no longer victims, we can begin to rebuild our self image and self esteem. It is vital that we let go of the need to control others and outcomes. In doing so we free ourselves from the need to continue our passivity and begin to own our power once again. As we begin to practice self care in our daily lives and use our tools to increase our self esteem, we free ourselves from the bonds of victim hood.

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