The Volunteer Victim

So many times, I’ve seen people, not just women, walk back into bad situations, eyes wide open. He or she is very much aware that things aren’t going to work out for their good, yet they head right back into the thing that destroyed him or her. Trust me when I tell you, this post isn’t coming to you from a sideline view or the stands. I didn’t have to do extensive research to gain knowledge of this thing. I’ve done it myself far more times than I care to remember. Looking through binoculars

I took my marriage vows to heart. I applied the rules at surface value. Well, let me explain that. I could not fully submit to him because that submission required his submission to God but the only things he submitted to were drugs, alcohol and anything outside of right. Anyway, even though I knew those things, I still made the one-sided effort to hold that thing together. I kept trying even after he showed me time and time again that his relationship with me wasn’t his first priority. As a matter-of-fact, he told me a few times that making money was more important to him. I can vividly remember twice when he looked at me and said, “Trease, the world does not revolve around you.” I always have to remind people (and myself) that I was a different woman back then, one who didn’t necessarily recognize the blatant signs of abuse, so my response to say something in return to hurt him. He told me that I came after his family, his work and his boxing career. He TOLD me that!

You would think that I would have left. Things only got worse. He continued to batter my psyche. I repeatedly walked back into the fight. Don’t get this thing twisted – I am not accepting responsibility for his abuse. HE CHOSE TO BATTER ME MENTALLY AND EMOTIONALLY! I do, however, accept responsibility for turning my behind around so many times to let him kick me in it. In my case, my behind was my mental and emotional self. I was a volunteer victim.

In my case, as it is with many women who use the survival of mental and emotional abuse as a tool to help other women who are still trapped inside of or are recently recovering from abusive relationships, I know for a fact that I didn’t get out a minute too soon. While it’s true that I wouldn’t have suffered that brain hemorrhage if I had left before 2009, I wouldn’t be able to tell other women just how tragically their story could end. I wouldn’t have first-hand knowledge of the pain of lying in ICU for days and having a ridiculously painful six month recovery.

The kind of thing I’m speaking of is seeing all the red flags and choosing to ignore them in hopes of seeing something different. This is especially true if you keep returningRed Flagto the same person who has repeatedly demonstrated that he or she has no interest in improvement. It’s just as true in cases where you keep choosing the same type of man or woman. After a while, you have to take a look in the mirror and accept the fact that you keep placing yourself in the victim role. You have the power to remove yourself from the situation.

I won’t ever be a volunteer victim again. My ex’s alcohol and drug addictions were things he kept hidden from me until after we were married. He hid his abusive tendencies. He was manipulative and just plain mean. I won’t ever be anyone’s victim again. That doesn’t mean that I’ve taken on the role of the untrusting, bitter, fearful, man-bashing woman. That will never be me. My boyfriend is not responsible for anything that my ex did.

I’ve taken control of my life. I decided that I would be a victor and not a victim. The victim mentality doesn’t allow you to move on. I refused to stay there. You don’t have to either.

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