In interpersonal relationships, the position of the victim is one of the most popular ones. Everybody pushes, pulls, plays tricks, trips others and sometimes even themselves up, uses others, exhausts their resources and their minds, usually unwittingly and unconsciously, and eventually placing themselves in the position of the victim.
The main reason that makes the position of the victim so popular comes from deep inside us.
"I am in the position of the victim" above all means two things:
"I do not own the relationship so I take no responsibility for it, even to myself. The other party is responsible and calls the shots."
That is comparable to an irresponsible player who expects to come out as a winner whether they win or lose the game: They win whenever they get what they want. But they also win whenever they don't, because in that case the other is the culprit, and as a result, the victim "requires" compensation. With this psychological strategy, this unconscious trick, anyone who feels that they are the victim seek or conquer two prizes:
1 - On the one hand, they feel free from the responsibility and obligation to address, adapt, change, and take a stand against various moral, emotional and/or practical dilemmas, with all the "trouble" and the impact that these options might have.
2 - And on the other hand, they avoid confronting the truth of their inner self. They avoid dealing with mechanisms, desires, conflicts that are playing with their own soul like a puppet show and forcing them to play the victim.
Why would someone take so much effort to avoid seeing the truth?
Because each person has defensive mechanisms which protect ourself from the hurtful truth. There is a "door" between the conscious and the unconscious Self, a door which lets in only the information we can handle. Our unconscious Self hides information of repressed mental representations and powerful moments, but also unacceptable ones, discarded by the Ego (the official -conscious- idea of who one is). There lay fantasies and desires, that if at some point become conscious can destabilize images of oneself ; images that were made with great sacrifices and through long processes.
-Facing the truth hurts. It hurts to change the image we have of ourself, the story we tell ourselves for peace of mind, as we go to bed at night.
-Nobody wants to hear that they are behaving like the victim and they are unconsciously harvesting great emotional advantages to the detriment of the relationship and of their partner.
-Playing the victim and giving the other the role of the persecutor is not a healthy relationship. It's a relationship that turns every day into a battlefield of blame, guilt, (passive) aggression, anger and suppressed needs.
-Yes, somebody can come to the realization that they are behaving like the victim, but only through a proper procedure that takes time and effort and presupposes awareness of the need to change and willingness to do so.
For these reasons, we have a spontaneous tendency when significant tension comes in the relationship, to unconsciously seek the position of the victim, the mistaken fellow, the misunderstood partner. The position of the victim is more comfortable and requires less effort, as mentioned above. This has a large effect that is far from negligible, especially when the relationship turns into a power game.
At this point the situation is obvious: to continue the relationship, the game requires that there are two members, both players. What is more relaxing, powerful, and (selfishly seen) more beneficial? Pulling and pushing and trying for both of you or demanding from the other to please you because you "deserve" it, since you are in a weaker position? ...
***Have you found yourself in the position of the victim?
Have you recognized a pattern in your life where the victim and the persecutor are two main roles hunting you?
I AM HERE to talk through this; Let's replace this toxic pattern with a more healthy relationship approach where both partners' needs are met and there is no room from blaming and hiding anymore.
Contact me here for a free intake meeting and discuss the possibilities.