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User Topic: Victim/Perpetrator Model of Infidelity
bionicgal
♀ 39803
Member # 39803
Default  Posted: 6:45 PM, February 24th (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Alright ya'll, hold on to your hats -- this might get thorny.

I was reading a thread on General this weekend about a therapist who everyone decided was a crackpot. This MC had sent emails to a BS trying to convince her to come back to therapy, and gave some advice that seems to run very counter to prevailing sentiment, at least in parts of SI. I think this therapist was unanimously shot down by the folks over there, but what he said really got me thinking.

One of his major points was that as long as the BS chose to see herself as 100% the victim, and her husband as 100% the perpetrator, that true understanding and reconciliation was not possible. He indicated that while her husband was 100% responsible for his actions, that getting stuck in this idea of blame indefinitely was going to keep her from meeting him in the space between them where they could learn to communicate better. The therapist did have some strong opinions about communication issues being the root of adultery, which also goes against this idea here that there is a flawed perpetrator on the loose, and we have to just locate and excise the bad from the WS, and everything should all be a-ok.

But my sneaking suspicion, is that this is not the full picture. And, that I as a BS can get so caught up in my (understandable) hurt, that I fail to see reality.

One example is when I trigger. I had a bad one the other night in cycling class when I heard a song, and I remembered something from "way back" that caused me to wonder if the seeds of infidelity had been there all along, and I had just missed them. I was triggering hard, so I was in full-flight panic mode, and in those moments, my husband is nothing but a villain. It is like I have seen a charging lion in the jungle, and I act accordingly. Rageful, accusatory and damn near feral. It is like blakesteele's silverback gorilla example, girl-version.

So, my point is, my husband did a cowardly, ignorant, selfish and hurtful thing during his affair. But, I am starting to question this notion of him being a perpetrator. And, when I get stuck in thinking that he did this infidelity "to" me, instead of despite me, I can get in a very powerful feedback loop that is so unproductive and destructive. All this time my H has been saying it was not a choice between AP and me, and he wasn't thinking of me much at all -- (yes, horrible.) He wasn't, and yes that was partly a symptom of his shortcomings, but also a symptom of a bad place in our marriage, where we had grown apart. It does not excuse it, but it does partly explain it.

So, I have just been working on this idea lately - that I am not a victim. I feel incredibly hurt by what my husband did, but as this therapist said to the BS, if you see yourself as the victim then you don't really have any power. All the power would be the wayward's, and that doesn't sit right with me. It also personalizes the affair against me in a way I really don't think it was in reality. I do think it was done despite me, not to me.

However, it is still mind boggling to me how something that was not done to me can hurt so terribly. So, I am not minimizing anyone's pain, or letting WSes off the hook. But, in healing, I am wondering if walking away from the victim/perpetrator model isn't perhaps the best idea.


me - BS (45) - DDay - June 2013
A was 2+ months, EA/PA
In MC & Reconciling
"Getting over a painful experience is much like crossing monkey bars. You have to let go at some point to move forward." -- C.S. Lewis.

Posts: 2247 | Registered: Jul 2013 | From: USA
karmahappens
♀ 35846
Member # 35846
Default  Posted: 6:54 PM, February 24th (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

It's very needed IMO.

I came to terms with the fact that what my husband did he did to himself. I was initially damaged because of his actions but I didn't allow his choices to define me or determine my healing.

[This message edited by karmahappens at 6:55 PM, February 24th (Monday)]


“And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom”
Anaïs Nin
Me: 45
Him: 47
Dday 8/2007
We have R'd

Posts: 3872 | Registered: Jun 2012 | From: Massachusetts
steadfast1973
♀ 24719
Member # 24719
Default  Posted: 7:00 PM, February 24th (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I am in the "he did it despite me" train of thought, myself. I wasn't even part of the equation in his mind... Didn't think it would affect me at all.


Me- 40- BS Him- 36- WH D-day#1 5/25/09 3 mo. EA d-day#2 11/06/13 Prostitute 11/5/13 in R
"I've seen your flag on the marble arch, our love is not a victory march, it's a cold and broken hallelujah."- Leonard Cohen

Posts: 2286 | Registered: Jul 2009 | From: Midwest
KatyaCA
♀ 41528
Member # 41528
Default  Posted: 7:02 PM, February 24th (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

It really depends on each individual circumstance but in some cases the BS is really collateral damage and not the intended target of the WS's affair. It wasn't something they did to hurt their spouse but they blew up a bomb in their life and the BS and child(ren) get shredded by the shrapnel.

So in a sense for some cases you have a valid point. That said, a BS needing a WS to be 100% accountable for the choice they made to cheat is not about being the victim. It's about refusing to be victimized by a lie. I refuse to take blame that is not mine to own and it is time for you to own your own actions. PERIOD!

I don't want to be with a man who won't man up and take responsibility for his own actions, whatever they may be. That does not make me stuck in a victim role. In fact, I think a BS standing up for him or herself this way is actually quite empowering.

They've been the recipient most of the time of
1. lying
2. gaslighting
3. blame
4. alienation of affection
5. betrayal

and others that don't come to mind off the top of my head. There is nothing wrong with saying NO MORE! OWN YOUR SHIT OR WE ARE DONE! and there is no being a victim in that.

The problem here is her counselor wants to consider her requirement of making him own his shame/actions/dishonor as her being a victim. He's a terrible and biased therapist and should not be an MC.


Posts: 77 | Registered: Dec 2013 | From: Pacific Northwest
peoplepleaser
♀ 41535
Member # 41535
Default  Posted: 7:08 PM, February 24th (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I agree with you wholeheartedly. Yes, it feels like they did this to us, and the repercussions are in fact that they did bring upon us humiliation and a lack of confidence and security in the relationship. I believe that we must, however, understand that we were not a part of their decision making process. It was definitely something broken in then that had nothing to so with us that made cheating a viable option at that time in our relationship with them. That does not mean that we aren't responsible for our choices in how we move forward with them in order to heal ourselves, them and our relationship.

As I move forward and struggle even with my WS's lack of remorse, I find myself stepping out of my pain from time to time just enough to realize that if this good person who I love dearly was able to do what she did, she must truly be broken. As part of my vow to her as a partner, that I renewed implicitly when I decided to R, I owe her and myself compassion for her having been in that space regardless of who is to blame for her being there (both FOOs and how our communication styles interact). It's not that there aren't consequences for her selfish decision to have the As, but the natural consequences of having to rebuild trust, sit in our pain and endure our anger and sadness from triggers might be enough depending on the situation. I'm starting to understand that those consequences bring on enough shame and guilt that removing compassion for the brokenness of the WS is not only unnecessary, but creates a barrier to healing together. Ultimately I love her. Not even in spite of her flaws, because it's our greatest strengths that are also our biggest weaknesses. If I can't find compassion for how she felt in the relationship at the time of the EAs and for how she feels now with them exposed to the last person she wanted to see her at her worst, then I am abandoning my own integrity as a loving partner.

Thank you so much for this post, as it caused me to think more deeply about how this journey when taken together must look different than the journey taken alone.


WS: 39
BS: 39
DS: 6
9 year relationship
DDay #1: September 6, 2013 EA for 5 weeks August 2013 with TT
DDay #2: January 2, 2014 EA for 6 weeks summer 2011 with TT
"I am still learning." -Michelangelo

Posts: 927 | Registered: Dec 2013 | From: Midwest
mchercheur
♀ 37735
Member # 37735
Default  Posted: 7:09 PM, February 24th (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

All this time my H has been saying it was not a choice between AP and me, and he wasn't thinking of me much at all -- (yes, horrible.) He wasn't, and yes that was partly a symptom of his shortcomings, but also a symptom of a bad place in our marriage, where we had grown apart. It does not excuse it, but it does partly explain it.

I could have written this word for word. My WH said the exact same thing.
The thing is, I have never made a decision in our entire relationship without considering how it would affect him first.
Did WH perpetrate an act by deciding to have an A?
Well, he ended our marriage.

Did OW perpetrate an act against me by deciding to pursue & have an A with WH? Yes, she stole from me.


Me: BW
Him: WH --Had 7 mo. PA with COW;
Married 20something years with kids
Trying to R

Posts: 1465 | Registered: Dec 2012
Kyrie
♀ 41825
Member # 41825
Default  Posted: 7:16 PM, February 24th (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Dr. Steven Stosny is my go-to guy on this subject. He has helped me immensely with moving away from a victim identity to a healing identity. He says,
People with healing identities focus on their resilience, strengths, and desire to improve their lives. They do not give in to thoughts of damage, unfairness, bad moods, blame, or victim identity. They certainly have such thoughts and are occasionally engulfed by the power of them, but for the most part they resist the impulse to indulge them. Instead, they keep focused on their desire to heal and improve.
(taken from one of his blog posts on Psychology Today)

His book Living and Loving After Betrayal was extremely helpful to me in making this transition from victim to healing. The book provides a lot of exercises to help you through the process.

Once I identified those things that are at the heart of my value system, I learned to change my thought processes. So when those triggers hit hard, I found myself responding differently. This was huge in facilitating healing.


Me: BW (47), WH (48)
Married 24 yrs, 2 teenagers
DD#1 01.20.12 When diagnosed w/STD
Told it was 15 mo. PA that ended 6 years ago
DD#2 04.06.14 Truth: PA was 2yrs/8mo
Separated for 6 weeks
Reconciling and healing now

Posts: 232 | Registered: Dec 2013 | From: southeast USA
rachelc
♀ 30314
Member # 30314
Default  Posted: 7:22 PM, February 24th (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

There is nothing wrong with saying NO MORE! OWN YOUR SHIT OR WE ARE DONE! and there is no being a victim in that.

this....

I know (believe me I do, because I'm a former ww) that it isn't about the BS, its about the broken wayward spouse and the BS is collateral damage.
Thing is, where is the line? It could be argued that the spouse who beats the other spouse is simply broken and acting out. They didn't really mean to hurt them, they are in so much pain themselves that this is how they cope, or lack thereof...

my husband was in pain and had two affairs. He did it because he felt like shit about himself. So, stay married because HE was in pain and couldn't handle it? There has to be some cognizance happening in an affair - we all make choices - but to read it as if the WS couldn't help themselves. Answering as a wayward, oh yes I could. And I did it anyway.
Sorry, I revealed my thorns here.
But, good topic.



his Dday: 2/10 but TT until 7/11
my Ddays: 1/12, 4/12 broken NC 12/12

me (WW/BS): 48
him: (BS/WH)52
4 kiddos in mid 20's

“Follow your intuition. Be smart, be brave. Tell the truth and don’t take any shit.”


Posts: 5784 | Registered: Dec 2010 | From: Midwest
Hosea
♂ 42422
Member # 42422
Default  Posted: 7:23 PM, February 24th (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Bionicgal:

Adultery, once brought to light, is such an overwhelming traumatic experience for the Betrayed Spouse that I can't help but consider them victims.

I've read interviews with women who had experienced rape / sexual trauma earlier in their lives, then later experienced adultery as a Betrayed Spouse. They viewed the adultery as far more traumatizing. Men who experienced the loss of a limb in war, then later endured a wife's affair, considered the adultery the more traumatizing loss.

Waywards aren't usually making calculated attempts to inflict devastating pain on their Betrayed by having an affair. In that sense, they are perhaps unwitting Perpetrators. The fact that they could behave so selfishly and recklessly is part of what makes the pain all the more cruel.

What I will concede is that there can not be real reconciliation if the two parties remain in their respective positions as Victim and Perpetrator.

The Wayward must become Healer (among other things), and the Betrayed must become Forgiver. It's very, very difficult for the two parties to transition to the roles in lockstep, or quickly.

Waywards are often in the Affair Fog, doling out Tickle Truth, prolonging the suffering of the spouses they should be focused on healing.

Betrayed Spouses find forgiveness a Herculean labor. New truths surface that revictimize them. Triggers explode constantly around them, despite their desperate attempts to find some place to hide from future injury.

These factors-- Affair Fog/Tickle Truth (for Waywards) and Triggers/etc. (for Betrayeds)-- tend to keep prolong the agonies and reinforce the Victim/Perpetrator relationship for a painfully long time.

In my view, this is why it's so very important for the Wayward seeking reconciliation to absolutely seize the opportunity to be the Healer. If the Betrayed Spouse finds the strength, in their agonizing pain, to be a Forgiver, then the Wayward should move heaven and earth to protect the fragility of their Betrayed.

In the end, however long it takes, the two parties need to love each other out of their former Victim/Perpetrator roles. It's often as hard to do this as it was easy to fall in love, but when it finally happens, the two have a chance to know a love that is deeper than they ever understood.

It's the kind of selfless love that keeps no record of wrongdoing. It's the kind of love that dies completely to self. It's the kind of love Jesus spoke about when he said, "Greater love knoweth no person than he (or she) that lays down his(or her) life for a friend."


John 8:10-11: "Then Jesus stood up again and said to the woman, “Where are your accusers? Did they not condemn you?”

“No, Lord,” she said.

And Jesus said, “Neither do I. Go and sin no more.”


Posts: 106 | Registered: Feb 2014
mchercheur
♀ 37735
Member # 37735
Default  Posted: 7:25 PM, February 24th (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

People with healing identities focus on their resilience, strengths, and desire to improve their lives. They do not give in to thoughts of damage, unfairness, bad moods, blame, or victim identity. They certainly have such thoughts and are occasionally engulfed by the power of them, but for the most part they resist the impulse to indulge them. Instead, they keep focused on their desire to heal and improve.

Kyrie, love this^^^^^. Thanks
Hosea----excellent. I plan to show your post to WH

[This message edited by mchercheur at 9:11 PM, February 24th (Monday)]


Me: BW
Him: WH --Had 7 mo. PA with COW;
Married 20something years with kids
Trying to R

Posts: 1465 | Registered: Dec 2012
rachelc
♀ 30314
Member # 30314
Default  Posted: 7:26 PM, February 24th (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Hosea, I'm printing that off = outstanding.
and speaking from experience:

I've read interviews with women who had experienced rape / sexual trauma earlier in their lives, then later experienced adultery as a Betrayed Spouse. They viewed the adultery as far more traumatizing.

10 times worse.


his Dday: 2/10 but TT until 7/11
my Ddays: 1/12, 4/12 broken NC 12/12

me (WW/BS): 48
him: (BS/WH)52
4 kiddos in mid 20's

“Follow your intuition. Be smart, be brave. Tell the truth and don’t take any shit.”


Posts: 5784 | Registered: Dec 2010 | From: Midwest
SisterMilkshake
♀ 30024
Member # 30024
Default  Posted: 7:30 PM, February 24th (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

To me, infidelity is a form of domestic abuse. If you agree that infidelity is a form of abuse, then you are a victim. There is a difference in acknowledging that you have been victimized by betrayal and wallowing in the victim identity. It would be unfair, in my opinion, for you all to go into the JFO forum and tell these newly betrayed spouses that they aren't victims. I feel that wouldn't be helpful at all to the newly betrayed. It is a "feeling" that I think most newly betrayed need to feel and process. Then you move forward from there.

I do not consider my self a victim any longer. I only felt like that for a brief time. It isn't in my personality to stay in victim mode. But, even the name of this wonderful site implies we are victims. If you are surviving something, it is usually a situation in which you were victimized. I have a thing about words and I like to look at definitions of words. Here is the definition of victim.

vic·tim noun \ˈvik-təm
: a person who has been attacked, injured, robbed, or killed by someone else

: a person who is cheated or fooled by someone else

: someone or something that is harmed by an unpleasant event (such as an illness or accident)

I don't know about you, but this sure sounds like what happened to me.

[This message edited by SisterMilkshake at 7:35 PM, February 24th (Monday)]


BW (me) 50ish FWH 50ish
Married 34 years, 3 children
d-day 3/10 LTA (4 yrs./fucking & flirting)

"Oh, why do my actions have consequences?" ~ Homer Simpson
"She knew my one weakness: That I'm weak!" ~ Homer Simpson


Posts: 10101 | Registered: Nov 2010 | From: The Great White North USA
karmahappens
♀ 35846
Member # 35846
Default  Posted: 7:46 PM, February 24th (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

It would be unfair, in my opinion, for you all to go into the JFO forum and tell these newly betrayed spouses that they aren't victims. I feel that wouldn't be helpful at all to the newly betrayed. It is a "feeling" that I think most newly betrayed need to feel and process. Then you move forward from there.

But we are in the R forum, not JFO.

I believe it is a point you get to, an acceptance and understanding that it wasn't "about" me at all.


“And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom”
Anaïs Nin
Me: 45
Him: 47
Dday 8/2007
We have R'd

Posts: 3872 | Registered: Jun 2012 | From: Massachusetts
TheGarden
♀ 40788
Member # 40788
Default  Posted: 7:52 PM, February 24th (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I'm still thinking about the overall concept of this question, but I wanted to say something in particular about that post in General:

I don't think it's fair or warranted to take the therapist's assertion at face value that IvyIvy (the BS in question) was choosing to see herself 100% as a victim forever and ever to the detriment of the remainder of her years on this earth. Nothing she has said about her situation thus far has struck me as being anything other than the typical newly betrayed spouse mentality, which (IMO) is a completely understandable place to be in after experiencing the shock and betrayal of infidelity.

People have a right to have negative emotions about infidelity, having negative emotions about infidelity is not a sign of pathology nor are they inappropriate, and it takes a LONG time to stop feeling negative about infidelity. I think it's completely inappropriate for anyone, either a layperson or a therapist (who in this case talked to IvyIvy for a whopping 2 sessions), to make judgments about someone's commitment to a "victim mentality" based on new- BS negative affect, much less that person's likely permanent future or the future of their marriage. She's upset, she's angry, she's sad, and she's questioning reality and whether she wants to stay with someone who didn't treat her very well. IMO, completely normal. Not the same thing as "choosing to see herself 100% as the victim".

And frankly, I do kind of feel that a MC demanding that a newly betrayed BS focus on examining their own part in a failed marriage is a painful and inappropriate slap in the face, and smacks a bit of "take responsibility for your Wayward's choices". Maybe he didn't mean it that way, but it definitely came across that way to me to some degree, and he isn't even my MC.


Me: BW, 39, Him: WH, 43; married 9 years, together 13 years
DDay:July 2013; EA progressing to a PA
APs: ex-"friend" & her enabling polyamorous husband
Status: Dual-income-no-kids, 2 cats, taking it day-by-day, married till we're not

Posts: 61 | Registered: Sep 2013 | From: Florida
Tearsoflove
♀ 8271
Member # 8271
Default  Posted: 7:54 PM, February 24th (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Thing is, where is the line? It could be argued that the spouse who beats the other spouse is simply broken and acting out. They didn't really mean to hurt them, they are in so much pain themselves that this is how they cope, or lack thereof...

I agree. The drunk driver who killed my husband's father didn't set out to kill him. And he didn't set out to injure the family who loved and depended on him in the process. Yet that was the end result. Regardless of the eventual outcome, they were all his victims despite the fact that they were not for one moment in his thoughts prior to his having gotten on the road. And he is no less guilty of being the perpetrator because, whether or not he hoped otherwise, he knew that drinking and driving had the potential to hurt himself and others.

While I have no doubt that my husband didn't set out to hurt me, he knew when he engaged in extramarital affairs that it had great potential to do so. He weighed that out and chose to do it anyway. That makes him the perpetrator regardless of his reasons. The fact that I was hurt made me the victim whether or not that hurt was intended or even whether or not I was the intended victim. Just because a target wasn't painted on my chest doesn't change the trajectory of the missile into my life.

I do not believe that I have remained in some "victim mode" just because I see it that way. Just because I feel my husband perpetrated wrongs against me doesn't mean that I view him as a perpetual perpetrator nor myself as a perpetual victim. And given the fact that we have recovered exceptionally well and have a happier marriage than we ever have is a pretty good indication that there is no one way to view this. My husband's ability to view the damage he caused and show true remorse while developing a plan to avoid future similar behavior was a critical factor in our moving above the perpetrator/victim roles. I do not believe we would have successfully reconciled had we glossed over the affair or even made it secondary to marital issues given the betrayal and the level of pain it caused. That wasn't me being stuck in "victim" mode, it was me having to work through the trauma and get reassurance that I was safe with my husband.

Personally, I think the focus on the victim/perpetrator is overblown. We're all human and we, therefore, make mistakes, act selfishly, and sometimes hurt others without meaning to. The fact is when you hurt someone you love, you show genuine remorse. And when you are hurt by someone you love, forgiveness is easier when true remorse is shown. So, to me, the debate over perpetrator/victim is actually a bunch of useless drivel. What really matters is whether or not the definition of remorse matches for all parties. In the case you brought from the other thread, I'd have to say it doesn't because if the BS felt she was getting what she needed from the WS, the therapist wouldn't be stuck on her believing herself to be 100% victim. The fact is, the woman no longer feels safe in her marriage and that's not going to change without some action on the part of the WS regardless of what labels the therapist tacks to them.

[This message edited by Tearsoflove at 7:56 PM, February 24th (Monday)]


"Just because I don't care doesn't mean I don't understand." ~Homer Simpson


Posts: 4306 | Registered: Sep 2005
SisterMilkshake
♀ 30024
Member # 30024
Default  Posted: 8:00 PM, February 24th (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I don't know if you are agreeing or disagreeing, karma. I know we are in the R forum, and I would be advising anyone in R that they need to get out of victim mode. (unless they have jfo)

My point is, that as a newly betrayed spouse that you not only feel like a victim but you are a victim. It does more harm than good to be telling newly betrayed spouses that they aren't victims and that if they stay in that mindset they and their marriage won't heal. (Which is what this MC was telling a fairly new BW.) It is something you must process. Whether it was about "you" or not, you can still be a victim.

Whether or not it was about me, I was still victimized by my FWH's infidelity. I don't identify myself as a victim, I identify myself as a survivor of infidelity.


BW (me) 50ish FWH 50ish
Married 34 years, 3 children
d-day 3/10 LTA (4 yrs./fucking & flirting)

"Oh, why do my actions have consequences?" ~ Homer Simpson
"She knew my one weakness: That I'm weak!" ~ Homer Simpson


Posts: 10101 | Registered: Nov 2010 | From: The Great White North USA
karmahappens
♀ 35846
Member # 35846
Default  Posted: 8:04 PM, February 24th (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Sorry SMS I think I was missing your point. I should have gone to bed hours ago...

I do agree with you.


“And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom”
Anaïs Nin
Me: 45
Him: 47
Dday 8/2007
We have R'd

Posts: 3872 | Registered: Jun 2012 | From: Massachusetts
SisterMilkshake
♀ 30024
Member # 30024
Default  Posted: 8:10 PM, February 24th (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage


BW (me) 50ish FWH 50ish
Married 34 years, 3 children
d-day 3/10 LTA (4 yrs./fucking & flirting)

"Oh, why do my actions have consequences?" ~ Homer Simpson
"She knew my one weakness: That I'm weak!" ~ Homer Simpson


Posts: 10101 | Registered: Nov 2010 | From: The Great White North USA
catatonic
40758
Member # 40758
Default  Posted: 8:28 PM, February 24th (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Excellent post. What a wealth of knowledge. I really appreciate all the insights. And it's great healing " food for thought".
I do agree with "sister milkshake " If I was asked.. "is it ok, If I sleep with someone, I'm not happy right now, can you fill in the void with the kids so they don't feel neglected. It's just sex, so it shouldn't affect you. Then I had a choice. Both WH and OW victimized me. How I respond to that and recovery from that is my choice.

Posts: 113 | Registered: Sep 2013
StillGoing
♂ 28571
Member # 28571
Default  Posted: 8:45 PM, February 24th (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I think the victim thing gets pigeonholed.

I was victimized in school, a lot. I was "A VICTIM."

That didn't make me powerless. I fought back. Most of the time I just got my ass kicked brutally by a dozen people at the same time; I felt alone and angry and frustrated, but the idea that I was powerless never really entered the equation. Even in elementary school it became a matter of surviving until I could act. Biding time, as it were.

Victims aren't powerless. Nor do people stay victims forever. Yeah, my wife did horrible shit to me *and* in spite of me. We have done a lot of work on that stuff. Same with the horrible shit I dumped on her.

I guess a lot of this comes down to the idea that early on, a BS needs to know this isn't his fault. He didn't make her go there and make those choices. In that circumstance, blame does need assignation, because it properly denotes responsibility.

Later on, it doesn't necessarily equate to a lingering bitterness. The idea that at some point, a BS needs to own something in the relationship whenever the topic of infidelity is brought up or else it's a Blame Game is counterproductive to me. I have compared the two before - alcoholics don't go to the relationship communication discussion. DV doesn't go there. gaming, theft, various amoral activities that operate within a relationship to fill some perceived hole at the expense of those around - these are things that need addressed and resolved because they contribute problems to the relationship. Infidelity is the same thing.

There are a lot of models to apply to the concept of victim/perpetrator. A continuous cycle is only one of them.


"You have insulted my footwear."

Posts: 7637 | Registered: May 2010 | From: USA
Topic Posts: 53
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