Victim Or Participant – You Can’t Be Both

victim or participantToo often, I hear and read stories about how people are victimized by others but are they really? Victim or participant – you cannot be both and I will explain why.

Victim Or Participant – You Can’t Be Both

We all encounter assholes and mean people in life, and heck, most of the time we are related to them by blood, or marriage, or whatever. Quite often these people, they might do or say something that either hurts or offends us and we like to lament, “Oh my god… they are so mean to me! I am a victim here!”

And that can very well be true but are you truly a victim if you are an active part of the offense against you? Are you a victim if you insist on keeping the argument or disagreement going by constantly engaging and re-engaging in the drama?

I think not… victim or participant – you can only play one role and most of the time the role is truly that of a participant though many like to claim and play the role of hapless victim.

The bottom line is this… if someone treats you like shit and you refuse to walk away, either actively or passively, you have decided to participate and your “right” to make allegations of victimhood are invalid.

Another term for “participant” and you will hear of this especially in cases of domestic abuse or violence, is co-combatant. This is where both partners typically abuse each other to one degree or another; all the while, both will cry that they are indeed the victim.

An adult child is grossly disrespectful to one of her parents… calling names, threatening this and that… is the parent a victim or participant? It all depends… if the parent either continues to try to engage the child positively or negatively in hopes of “winning” whatever unresolved conflict they may have… that is participating. That also is not making anything better…

But even kids do this kind of stuff every day on the playground… Johnny pushes Mikey down on the playground…. Mikey gets back up and pummels Johnny, at which time Johnny runs to the teacher and claims that he is the victim and that Mikey is being mean… Many times in interpersonal conflicts, the “victim” actually started the cycle of abuse, disrespect, whatever, and put things into motion. See how that works…

The bottom line is this… never allow anyone to treat your poorly ever. EVER. And if they do, walk the hell away, cut them out of your life… but if you do allow someone to treat you like shit, and you continue your part of that play… you are no longer a victim… you are a participant, and really, you get what you deserve.

Proverbs 26.4 – “Do not answer a fool according to his folly or you yourself will be just like him.” – I think that makes the point right there… wise man or fool, victim or participant… you can only be one or the other…

Andy Wooten M.A. Counseling – A Certified Life Coach In Aspen Colorado

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