“Be confused, it’s where you begin to learn new things. Be broken, it’s where you begin to heal. Be frustrated, it’s where you start to make more authentic decisions. Be sad, because if we are brave enough we can hear our heart’s wisdom through it. Be whatever you are right now. No more hiding. You are worthy, always.” ~ S.C Lourie
Some say that you cannot heal until you stop identifying with victim energy. That it’s a hinderance to the healing process. I disagree strongly.
People heal if they can come to terms with the extent of how they were a victim in their life, and if they can feel the full impact in their body/mind/soul. Healing is about owning what happened to us, not diminishing it. It’s not about pretending that something was less than it actually was.
Because trauma is the “eternally present past”, our physiologies are still wired by the original traumatic imprint. Meaning, we are still victims to what occurred decades ago. The feeling of shame in your belly, the anxiety in your chest, the endometriosis arising from sexual trauma, the chronic arm pain from incomplete survival responses (not being able to push the perpetrator away), are all present in the body today.
Our body/mind are still suffering and thus victims of earlier abuse and neglect.
When healers or spiritual teachers say “You cannot heal until you stop identifying with victim energy”, there is little room for empathy. Essentially, what is being conveyed is, “You need to get over that”. But in my personal and professional experience, healing begins with meeting people right where they are, validating their experience, so that the painful truth can we owned and thus integrated and then transcended.
In other words, fully normalizing their victim energy given their life experiences.
Denying victimhood is breeding ground for spiritual bypassing, for rising above something without validation and integration. This then incites people to diminish others in their victimhood through lack of empathy, or thinking/saying, “You need to get over that”.
I see this playing out in how certain people are diminishing Black Lives Matter by saying “All Lives Matter”. They do not see the extent of suffering amongst people of colour because, in part, they have yet to tend to and own how they themselves are victims from earlier adverse experiences.
So long as we reject our own victimhood—and few escape being victims on this planet—we will reject the true extent of victimhood in others. But to the degree that we own our victimhood, we can leave it behind, while having more compassion for others.
Check out Vince’s book: Wild Empty Spaces ~ Poems for the Opening Heart