A little while back I had a really hard conversation with one of my closest friends. I asked him for his honest thoughts and he gave them to me. What he said was not what I wanted to hear. As I left feeling completely frustrated and misunderstood, I tried to comfort myself by telling myself that he had no clue what my life was like and how difficult it really is to be in my shoes…
Like so many other times, it was so much easier for me to play the victim then to stand up and face the hard truth in front of me. I can point the finger at the church, my family, and my friends for all the areas that I am dissatisfied with life, however even if there are areas of fault in others, victimizing myself is never going to get me very far. That being the case, why do I view myself as the victim so often?
I see it in society all the time as well. People try to blame their circumstance on racism, sexism, or bigotry and in the end, I think it is simply a coverup for them to step up and be the better person. Back when I was teaching in the public schools, “Is it because I am Black, (Mexican, a girl, etc)?” was the constant response from students trying to avoid the consequences of their actions when they got in trouble. My students were under the age of 13 and somehow had already learned, playing the role of the victim was an easy way out of getting in trouble.
In today’s society, I see the LGBT community speak of all the hatred they experience from the church. While this may be (is) true, when will the LGBT community choose to take the high road and start living out their own message of love and acceptance by loving the church despite its flaws? All I see is hatred being combated by equal hatred.
In my own life I am trying to stop playing the victim. It is incredibly hard. Yesterday I was reassigned classrooms at work. It was completely out of the blue and everyone at work (including myself) thought that I had done something to my supervising teacher that ticked her off enough to kick me out of her class. I spent the whole day in the the new classroom trying to not get frustrated by what I thought was unfair treatment. At the end of the day, having heard the rumors floating around, my new supervisor approached me. He told me he had requested me to fit a particular need in his class and it had nothing to do with my previous supervisor. I felt like a fool for all that I had assumed and how quickly I had placed myself as a victim. As always, I need to start seeing my circumstances through a positive lens… my life is probably far better than I think.
How do you deal with the circumstances where you are being wronged but want to avoid playing the victim?