I have come to understand most people choose to take the viewpoint about abusers – that best serves themselves. Most people in life will take the easiest road. The road of less pain. The road of believing whatever makes life easiest. No matter how irrational, or distorted the thinking.
Some people choose to believe narcissism, sociopathy, psychopathy, paedophilia etc – are ‘mental illness’. Which is not correct. They are character disturbances and evil at work. Not mental illness. And they do indeed know what they are doing. It is intentional. It is conscious abuse.
Some people choose to believe abusers don’t know what they are doing is wrong. Yes, they do know it’s wrong. Why else would they lie and hide it? Why else would they act one way around victims/potential victims, and another around other people? That’s proof alone they know it’s wrong. It’s also proof they can control their behaviours. Yet, this is so often ignored, as this does not fit the lie that abusers ‘can’t help it’.
One of the reasons people choose to believe in these lies………. is they cannot bear to think the person who abused them, didn’t love them. Or face the fact, that the abuser wanted to hurt them. It is easier for many – to believe this is not true. It’s harder to know someone didn’t love you. It’s harder to know they wanted to hurt you. It’s a truth many don’t want to face. So they choose lies – to make it ‘feel better’. To avoid the pain. Avoidance is a huge coping strategy for many.
Another reason people believe lies, are if they minimize it all…….. then it doesn’t feel so bad. If they minimize the abuse, minimize the abusers intentional actions, minimize the affect of the abuse……. it ‘feels better’. But, this minimizing does not allow the survivor to face the truth. And how can you heal – if you don’t deal with the reality of it all?
And there are more reasons why people choose to believe lies about abuse and about abusers.
I do understand why people believe lies. It is easier. I know – I did it for a long time too. I minimized all the abuse. I couldn’t face the fact that my own mother wanted me to be sexually abused. That’s a terribly painful reality to deal with. So, I do know why people choose to delude themselves.
I have no issue with people believing whatever they want to believe……… except when they then demand everyone else has to believe those lies too. Or they delude themselves they are giving ‘good advice’. When it’s not.
For those of us who choose to walk the painful road of truth…….. it is not helped by being told what we know – is wrong. It’s not wrong. It’s just a truth many people cannot (yet) handle. Some may face the truth at some point in their life. Some won’t.
People talk about wanting to deal with truth and wanting honesty – but truth is often a pill too bitter to swallow.
I see many in society, many abuse survivors, many mental health professionals – all believing in lies about abusers. And often they will do anything – no matter how bizarre – to defend their views. They will shame other survivors, tell survivors they are not ‘good enough’ and all manner of further traumatising actions and words. Some will delude themselves they are ‘better people’ – which may stroke their own ego, but it is still a lie.
I realise cognitive dissonance is as prevalent – as other cognitive distortions of ‘minimizing’, ‘rationalising’, ‘invalidating’, ‘rose coloured glasses’ etc.
I do get why this happens.
But, I have travelled way past that point in my journey. I have faced the heinous truths. And that takes far more courage and capacity to deal with reality. Yet, to many – I am wrong in going down this part of my journey.
I realise most people only know what they have personally experienced. And if a persons own experience, is stuck at the point of believing lies, minimizing, rationalising… etc…then they can’t see further than that. They ‘choose’ not to see further.Or they are not at a point of their journey, in being able to face the truth. And they will then justify their beliefs anyway they can. One common one, is to delude themselves they are being ‘compassionate’ to abusers. That really does make some people ‘feel better’.
People’s need to protect their own current belief systems, is pretty strong. Not strong in a good way. But more of a ‘strong’ in the sense of a big, huge log, often strongly blocking their pathway to truth and reality.
If I was an artist – I would draw this path…… with this huge log stuck in the middle….. completely blocking the pathway. With many people on the one side of it, doing nothing to try to move it. So they remain where they are. But, they feel okay, because there are many are all in the same place. So together they feel safe. And they tell themselves and each other, they are fine where they are. And they just try to ignore the huge log.
Then I would draw another path, with some people who are not okay with staying where they are, pushing this huge log out of the way. I would depict the pain created by this and the strength and effort – to move this log. It takes time. There are tears and fears about what is on the other side of the huge log. Their safety is threatened. Some persist and some give up. But, some know they must persist.
And then I would draw a third path, with the people who persisted and moved the huge log, walking beyond it. And there are very few on this path. The path seems daunting and lonely. But, the few on this path call out to each other. Their thinking clearer, but there are tears and sadness. Some have to sit down for a long time, before continuing on. Then they need to move – all at different speeds, along the pathway – towards the light.
In the distance is this light they know they must move towards.
And this huge log they moved is a barrier – and it’s called truth.
And the light in the distance – is healing.
I understand there are fewer people on the path of truth and reality.
But for those of us who have painfully moved that log and got to the other side, we don’t need to be mocked and told we are wrong. We don’t need opinions from those who choose to turn their back on truth, and face the other way.
I don’t know if that makes sense, but I find imagining journeys helpful.
The path of truth – when it comes to abuse – can be terribly painful. And that needs to be validated, not mocked, denied, or trivialised.
So, I do what I can, in my capacity, to reach out to others, who are also on this path.
~ Lilly Hope Lucario
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