Monday, October 27

The Unhealthy Dance of Passivity 10/27/14

       Last month I covered eight char-acteristics that prevent us from having healthy rela-tionships.  Tonight, I tackle number nine.

Playing the Victim Role
     A victim does not exercise the power he has.  He is pas-sive, making excuses for

his lack of action.   He does not make choices that enables surmounting his difficulties.  A child, does not have the personal power to challenge an adult. I understand that.  An adult has a leveraged role, when relating with a kid.  I get that.  But as adults, we can express our voice. But don't.  Therein lies the root for an unsatisfying and passive life.  We allow the memory of earlier selves---when we were less informed and less empowered as children to dictate how we live our lives, now.

        Those assuming this subordinate position do not take responsibility for their passivity, for accepting unaccept-able behavior.  People with this mentality are targets for abusers.  Preda-tors prey upon pas-sive people as easily as seagulls diving for a discarded hambur-ger at a local board-walk.

        Abusers fill the vacuum of the passive person's lack of assertion---making choices for them.  The victim dances a sick dance with the aggressive abuser, surrendering their dignity, values and voice.  The perpetrator takes advantage of victims with impunity. The passive person, a willing victim, due to low self-esteem, being groomed for it by growing up in an abusive household or an unwillingness to grow up and assume the role of an adult.

      This is the core essence of being un-safe, not taking care of ourselves. Victims need to exercise bound-aries, applying them to those who prey upon their space, values and peace of mind.  Doing so is standing for their personal power, recov-ery and integrity---being consistent with their values.  Doing so diminishes the likeli-hood of depression, because the individual is taking care of his needs and feelings, giving himself the dignity he deserves and wants.

How About You? 
Any thoughts on passivity?  I'd love hearing them!


Anonymous said...

This topic touches a sensitive chord in me. I was raised to live in the means of passivity. Catholicism was well immersed in the culture I was raised in. I was taught early on that we should be sacrificial and always give,help and turn the other cheek. I felt humbleness and humility were exploited to much, out of context and were mostly used as a hook to attach the guilt string."Catholic guilt" Uhhhhhh. A phrase that was explained to me much to late in life. But with all due respect to the religion, times have changed a bit.
Growing up, it was hard to play sports or do anything without having the ego beat out of me. I was always checked to see if I could be humbled more by various adults. This came strongest when I was having success at what I was doing. Frequently hearing comments like"You think you're a big shot now","You think you're better than everyone else.", " You're crazy". When I should of been supported by comments like " Go get em'", "Great job", "Awesome", "Show me what you're made of." etc.. I was confused because I always talked and was aware of the kids who didn't quite fit in when I was a teenager. I was naturally a compassionate kid. I remember once dancing with a crippled girl in a wheelchair along with other accounts. It's just who I was. Though humility and humbleness are good spiritual qualities, they were taken to dangerous levels with me. It was to the point of depression, emptiness, low self worth. Spiritually I was trampled on and made to feel less than others. This pattern was present in almost all areas in my life. Naturally I found other things to make me feel high and alive. If I hadn't self medicated I'd probably wouldn't be alive today. My teenage years were a bit to heavy.
The biggest problem passivity caused was in relationships, mainly my marriage. Now looking back, how easy it was for my spouse to control me. I chased my spouses happiness the same way I tried to please the Catholic guilt. It's not possible. I use to think that these strings that controlled me were written on my forehead but now I see that over 100 things were tried on me until one worked. These were then repeated and control was attained. When decisions had to be made they would argue and talk bad about both options but were very cunning to get me to decide on the one they wanted by arguing less about it, only for me to take full responsibility for bad turnouts. This state of ambiguity killed me after a decade. Remember I just wanted peace and the arguing to stop. To many times I would decide on the opposite of what I really wanted. It truly is an ugly dance. I've come to find that to many marriages run like this. A person who does this is mentally and emotionally abusive, never taking responsibility for their feelings, happiness, or decisions. Home became toxic and a mental/emotional torture chamber for me. And yes their yelling rages would get loud that neighbors would frequently ask if I was OK and if I was gonna continue to stick it out with this marriage. I was keeping the peace by passivity. In reality I was hurting myself and was not helping my spouse either by enabling these bad habits to continue. I use to think that my spouse was demon like and wicked. Now, I think it's sad and how horrible they might feel inside if they have to control others and are unable to be OK about making wrong decision sometimes.
Today the Innkeeper opened my soul's mind from this entry. I realized that I have been in passivity with God. My relationship has been head down I'm not worthy. Now I hear God urging and saying "I want to see you kick some butt in life","Show me what you're made of."-CoolBreeze

Thumper said...

Dear Pablo,

I am one of those people who tend to allow the memory of my earlier self dictate how I live my life, especially when it comes to bullies and people with toxic personalities. I dance the sick dance with the aggressive abusers in my life, sacrificing my dignity, values and voice. I was absolutely groomed for it growing up in a horrible and abusive household. The good news is that I am more aware and so weary of being this way. I want to change! As a result, I am practicing having my boundaries. Baby steps have helped me as I slowly graduate toward taking much bigger steps. It is not easy! But I find that just having the willingness to move toward the big steps, is a huge accomplishment.

Pablo said...

Dear Cool Breeze,

Thanks for your comments. I have been worn out from working a lot. I want to reply to what you share here, you bring up some important points.

I'm sorry hearing that when you were a child you were put down for succeeding in sports. As a kid you didn't know the comments you received where from people judging you, who were placing their negative projections on you. You weren't wrong, they were for assigning blame to you, because you did well!

Breeze, I'm glad you are visiting this inn. Here, we learn to not let others define us or determine our moods. Also, you might want to read this post:Winning the Grand Prix of Life. It's about having our voice and standing in our own power. Let me know what you think.

I'm sorry hearing you had a rough time in your marriage. What are you doing to take care of yourself now? What are some ways you will kick butt? :->

I like your visits. Hope to see you soon.

The Innkeeper

Pablo said...

Dear Thumper,

How does that feel for you, waltzing with abusive people? Have you been able to forgive yourself, for doing that? Hurray for boundaries.

Kudos for you! You are creating a new legacy by standing up to bullies and intimidators. Please give yourself credit for the steps you are taking to move away from passivity. You might want to peek at the link I posted above, with Cool Breeze, "Winning the Grand Prix." It may help you.

I bet you feel more alive because you are standing for your values.

Thank you for reading, posting and sharing your thoughts. Your comments mean a lot to me!

Quotes from the Posts

"I'm mindful that our thoughts affect the words we use, our words influence our actions, our actions shape our character and our character determines our destiny."

From "My Character Determines My Destiny." To read it, please click here.

"Progress not perfection, is better than no progress at all, especially when we're trying to rid ourselves from unwelcome dragons that dwell within the closets of our soul."

From, "Still Learning" which, within four days, became the most popular post
written. To read it, please click here.

"Worry does not empty tomorrow of its trouble, but it does empty today of its strength"
From the post: "Life Is Not a Correspondence Program." Click here to read it.

"Even though we cannot control our circumstances, we can control how we choose to respond to them."

From, "Handling Stress and Dealing With an Emotional Bully."Click here to read this post.

"Nope, being busy isn't exciting. Boring is good. Because boring is not boring; boring is being healthy, living a balanced life that has serenity"

From: "Do You Know What It Means If You Are Too Busy?" For more, please click here.