I am an anti-victim shaming advocate and I always feel relieved and encouraged, when I read other people’s empathy regarding victims of abuse being ‘shamed’ for being a victim.
Victim shaming, shame shifting, victim blaming – happens all the time. It’s everywhere. And it’s wrong, it lacks empathy, it is painful, it is re-victimising and prevents healing.
This article written by Lenora Thompson – is excellent. Lenora is a victim and survivor of narcissistic family abuse. And has been abused by church people. So we have a lot in common.
Lenora clearly sees the shaming that goes on. As do I. I have written about this often. Many of my blogs, are about victim shaming.
I see other survivors of abuse ‘shaming’ others for ‘acting like a victim’. I see the mental health industry shaming victims by saying ‘don’t be a victim’ – which is victim shaming. I see society shaming victims of abuse – again with such a lack of empathy ‘haven’t you got over that yet’ ‘that was years ago’ ‘stop wallowing’ ‘move on’ etc etc.
Being a victim of abuse, is not shameful, yet we are shamed continually. The abusers shame us, people around us – shame us. Then society shames us. Other abuse survivors shame us. Mental health professionals shame us. Religious people shame us by demanding we are not forgiving enough, we are not showing abusers enough compassion or mercy etc, we do not have enough grace. We are bad, weak people as result. All further shaming, victim blaming, shame shifting.
We shame ourselves as a result of all this. And we don’t heal. The wounds get deeper.
It is more abuse. It is more shame piled onto us. And we never deserve it. But, it happens all the time.
I agree – the word victim – is not a dirty shameful word. But, many choose to see it that way and it sure is used to shame us, as dirty, weak people.
Another article by Lenora Thompson I relate to, is about religious abuse and abuse from narcissists, who decide to use religion and God, to abuse us. I’ve been through this too, so it is comforting to read another person’s empathic thoughts and understanding, of how destructive and abusive – religious narcissists, are.