Playing Victim 101: Recognize, Understand, Confront, and Avoid
Have you ever faced a friend who was always a victim in every story? Or a relative who blames others too often when something unpleasant happens to her? If you have ever faced someone who exhibits this behavior, maybe they have a victim mentality or what is more known as playing victim.
What is Playing Victim?
A person with playing victim behavior firmly believes that all bad luck in their life is caused by people. They always have reasons to blame others and to avoid responsibility. Facing someone who believes themselves to be the “eternal victim” of life can be exhausting because it involves negative energies and manipulative behavior. In this article, you can find out more about playing victim behavior, how to deal with it, and protect yourself.
Recognize 8 Playing Victim Behaviors
1. Pessimistic in dealing with various things, including themselves.
They will focus more on seeing the negative side of things rather than the positive side, including when it comes to themselves. Often feels unworthy, helpless, along with a negative and sad self-perception.
2. Consider all problems are calamities that cannot be controlled.
Life is never problem-free, but that doesn’t mean that we don’t have the slightest share or act in these problems. Unfortunately, people with playing victim behavior don’t think so.
3. Feel hurt when someone gives them a suggestion or opinion.
Because they have positioned themselves as victims from the start, they will feel cornered if other people give suggestions or opinions that are not in line with what they feel and want. According to them, the problematic person who should be given advice or opinion is other people and not them.
4. Always feel that life is never on their side.
As the earth changes day to night, life does not always put us in an advantageous position nor does it always hurt. However, someone with a victim mentality will feel that whatever they do will have no meaning nor can change anything in life.
5. Always be the one who is disadvantaged and helpless in all events.
When they tell of their experiences or what they are going through, they will claim that they were the ones who suffered the most losses among other people involved. They will also claim that they have no power over anything that happens.
6. All is the fault of others and not their responsibility.
Besides independently declaring themselves as victims, they see that all cases and disasters that occur in their lives are the fault of others and do not involve the slightest responsibility themselves. You know it takes two to tango, right?
7. Get engrossed in hurt feelings and don’t seek solutions.
The victim mentality makes a person sink into feelings of sadness and pain without the belief and desire that problem-solving is possible. Instead of trying to find a way out, they will choose to be sad and sad again until there are fresh problems to grieve.
8. Holding a grudge against other people who seem happy and successful.
Feelings of unworthy self can lead to jealousy towards others who seem worthy, and that jealousy can develop into resentment. If the opportunity arises, they may exploit someone else’s mistakes and damage that person’s reputation. Even if what they did was wrong, they would not accept being blamed.
Understand the 4 Causes of Victim Playing Behavior
1. Experienced abuse or trauma in the past.
Playing victim behavior can occur because someone has been a victim of abuse or has experienced a traumatic event that involves and affects physical, mental, sexual, and financial consequences. The problems they experience can be persistent and during that time they don’t get help, so being a “victim” is the way to deal with problems.
2. Betrayed by a trusted person.
Another cause of playing victim behavior is that someone has been betrayed by someone they really trusted, and this has led to the development of a trust issue. They have not been able to fully let go of what is happening and accept their own feelings, so they become suspicious of whatever or whoever they are facing.
3. Codependency to others.
Psychologically over-dependence on other people can cause someone to develop victim behavior. They may have sacrificed a lot in their life for others without thinking about themselves first. When they feel they are not getting the same amount of reward and sacrifice to meet their needs, they will feel upset and very disappointed without realizing their own role in the situation.
4. Manipulative behavior.
This behavior could lead to narcissistic personality disorder or battling depression. However, it can also be caused by experiences of constant manipulation by someone in their life. They often or even become accustomed to looking for loopholes, so they are also good at finding negative loopholes in everything. It could also because of parenting habits that have been used since childhood. When they become victims, they always get what they want and continue to do so into adulthood.
8 Ways to Deal with Victim Playing Behavior
1. Find out and consider where the playing victim’s behavior might come from.
Could it be that this behavior has been in them for a long time? Has anyone close to them ever manipulated them for a long time? Are they struggling with depression and low self-esteem? Consideration of these causal factors needs to be done in order to understand and then find the right approach to deal with and help the playing victim. Everyone may have different causes.
2. Find out about the problems that occurred down to the details before conveying something.
If you want to talk about the event in question, first investigate the incident so you know what actually happened and what didn’t. People with a victim mentality can be manipulative so that you can become biased in responding to their existing problems.
3. Communicate behavior that you find annoying without making them feel cornered.
When dealing with someone with playing victim behavior, try to name and explain which specific parts of the behavior you find destructive or disturbing. Communicate well and don’t get carried away with emotions, high patience is the key.
4. Provide the easiest problem solving to do.
Excessive negative emotions can make a person unable to think logically and reasonably. Try to come up with a solution that is most practical and doesn’t take much effort to do. Maybe the solution you provide will not be overlooked, but at least they know that you care about them and want to help them achieve a better situation.
5. Divert the conversation to positive things about them.
Getting caught up in negative conversations can nurture destructive feelings in them and you as a listener. Try to shift the conversation to more uplifting things, like their talent for cooking or their accomplishments at work. Make them remember that they have happy moments and that their life is not always sorrowful.
6. There is no need to show excessive sympathy.
You don’t have to stick up for them just because they are the closest person to you. If what they did was wrong or bad, it is that closeness that gives you the privilege of being able to tell them about what they did. Don’t justify their bad deeds just because you care about them, it will become a bad habit pattern and can backfire on you.
7. Turn the conversation into a two-way dialogue.
If they feel that they are being positioned as a suspect or the guilty party, they will feel attacked and the problem will not be resolved. It could be that you are made the next scapegoat because you are considered not on their side. Communicate openly so they also feel heard by you.
8. Keep your distance if necessary.
If everything is done and your patience is running low, it’s okay to keep your distance for your own happiness and mental health. Playing victim behavior can drain the positive energy of the parties involved even if only as story listeners. Always remember to take care of yourself first before anyone else, Flokqers!
Avoid Being The One with Playing Victim Habits!
If you think you have any of the behaviors listed above or have experienced abuse that causes trauma, see a psychologist right away to help you understand your situation better.
A psychologist can help you identify the causes of the victim mentality, identify other disorders that you may not be aware of, identify your personal goals and needs, and help you achieve them.
Read also: Online Psychologist and Therapy in Indonesia
So, now that you know the playing victim behavior, might as well prevent it! Playing victims show problems from the past that have not been resolved properly in a person’s life and may require the help of a professional psychologist. Remember that everyone can and has the right to take control of their life and determine their own happiness, including you, Flokqers!