“I am not a victim. I am not a victim. I am not a victim!” It was my mantra not long ago when I found out that my husband of 20 years was cheating on me with a little ho half his age. And just as I was chewing on that, my adorable, sweet, loving Basset Hound, who had been my loyal companion for ten years, up and died. And as if that weren’t enough, I had to sell my beautiful house in a lovely neighborhood because I couldn’t afford it anymore. So did it stop there? Noooo. The icing on the cake was when I went away for a month to forget my troubles and left my car on a “safe” storage lot. Lo and behold some gang members from down south decided to “borrow” it for their drug drops, then abandon it on some lonely street in Salt Lake City,Utah. Salt Lake City,Utah. Huh?!! This lovely piece of news came to me through the mail at my vacation place, and all I could say was… shit!
Now I ask you. Did I have a case for claiming victim-hood? “Of course,” my indignant, righteous self proclaimed! “Look at what’s gone down. Look at all I’ve lost. And none of it, none of it was my fault.” That’s sure how it looked. So why was I working so hard to affirm I’m not a victim? I’ll tell you why. Because relegating myself to that lowly form of life called victim was a trap that I had no desire to snare myself in.
Here’s what I think of victims: they’re sad, bordering on pathetic people. When something bad happens to them, they blame someone or something else for their plight. They grouse and complain and when offered alternatives to their point of view, they flatly reject them. Victims wear their friends out with their constant tales of woe, steadfastly refusing to step up to the plate and take responsibility for their life. They get this immediate rush from blaming (don’t we all?) but in the end, blaming gets them nowhere. It’s just a way to put off finding real solutions to their problems, and in the end it’s disempowering. I mean, if it’s someone else’s fault, then it’s up to THEM to fix it. How do you make the life you really want when you’ve given someone else that power? The answer is…you don’t! You’re at their mercy.
Now you understand why I don’t want to be one of those people. Why the mantra “I am not a victim” sticks in my head when shit hits the fan. I have this belief that no matter what happens to me, no matter how awful it seems, no matter how much it hurts, ultimately, the universe is sending it my way for my betterment. In the short term, it sucks. But in the long run, there are lessons to be learned from it, gifts to be taken from it, and if I consciously go through each and every situation, I will grow into a stronger, wiser person. With this belief, I have no choice but to say “I am not a victim. I AM the powerful creator of my own life!”
Check out my book, The Affair: From Breakdown to Breakthrough, A Therapist’s Real-life Journey to learn how I got through my crisis and came out stronger than ever. You can read a synopsis of the book on my website, www.infidelityandaffairs.com and buy it worldwide from all Amazon websites (both print and Kindle) and Barnes and Noble. The book also gives you great tips and insights on relationships.