A Liar, a Manipulator or a True Victim
By Bernadette A. Moyer
Sometimes it is really hard to tell whether someone is a liar, a manipulator or a true victim. Today the “victim” receives many forms of attention and sometimes even a pass on their bad behaviors. Our society hates to witness any real form of victimization. But what about the liar and the manipulator that has learned to use victimization to their advantage?
A few years ago I interviewed a survivor of sexual abuse. It was her father that abused her and he admitted it was punished and went on with counseling. It cost him his marriage and initially his relationships with his children. Later they did rebuild those parent-adult child relationships.
One of the comments that struck me the most came from the adult survivor, she said, “we are really good liars.” She was referring to abuse victims. I was puzzled until she explained it. She said, “Just going on and about our everyday lives and acting normally is a lie.” She went on to say that until she could own it and do the work she was in cover up mode and living a lie. I was stunned by her honesty and that she has gone on and talked about her story and in doing so has managed to help many other abuse survivors.
For many survivors they can’t deal honestly with all the fallout and trauma associated with sexual abuse. Many cover it up and many lie about it. Some never share their stories and some others learn to use their victimization to manipulate.
What struck me about the woman that I interviewed was the depth of love and support within the family that attributed to her health and wellness. The family not only believed her and supported her but also sought professional help in learning how to appropriately deal with her father, the abuser too.
They say, “You can’t rewrite history” but it seems in some families where sexual abuse has occurred they have tried to do just that. Why lie, manipulate and cover up sexual abuse? Because for many victims it is easier than head on dealing with it, however, sadly this inhibits their growth and their ability to heal and become whole. It doesn’t just go away.
Often a child victim of abuse will receive a big reaction and a tremendous amount of support. Kids are smart and many learn that they can manipulate others as a result of their story. They learn that for them there is value in remaining a victim. Some never move beyond their victimization as a result. Others will self-medicate through drugs and alcohol. Some will use sexual activity as a way of dealing with abuse.
Many prostitutes have been sexually abused and those that sexually abuse were often victims of sexual abuse themselves. These are really good reasons to seek out professional help and they are also so often just why many never own their trauma.
A child who has been victimized by sexual abuse is never at fault, not ever. These kids need to be believed and supported. The support and love that they receive after the victimization can and will make all the difference in their healing, their growth and their development.
Sadly without proper care and treatment many kids grow up and become skilled liars, manipulators and stay stuck in their underdeveloped childlike mindset. We need to support them in their health and wellness and give them an equally big reaction for seeking treatment.
Years ago a dear friend confided in me that she was a rape survivor. Her case went through the court system and the rapist was convicted. What shocked me the most? At the time that she confided in me we were friends for more than 10 years. She never once came across as a victim.
I truly believe that because she dealt with her trauma in an honest and forthright manner, had therapy and much love and support from her husband, her siblings and her adult children that she was able to move past her trauma to wellness.
“Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” John 8:32
When you study victims the one thing that comes across is that the ones that truly were victimized seldom enjoy talking about it unless or until they are on a mission to use their experiences to help others.
Joyce Meyer is a strong survivor of sexual abuse and she has taken her abuse and turned it around for the greater good. She talks about the liar, the manipulator and victim roles played throughout her own recovery.
Don’t wait for “when” –
“The greatest part of our happiness depends on our disposition not our circumstances.” Martha Washington
Bernadette A. Moyer on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/bernadetteamoyer
New books! Along The Way and Another Way by Bernadette A. Moyer on Amazon and Barnes & Noble