Wednesday, January 2, 2013

I Lost My Temper New Years Eve

Going out of the old year with a bang, eh?
Not what I had planned or what I wanted.
One (large) part of what I lost my temper over
(notice that I didn't say "what made me lose my temper"? That's important)
was this way I have of playing victim to my circumstances.
I hate it when people play victim. 
It nauseates me. 
It makes me want to shake them til their teeth chatter.
It guarantees that I have no pity at all to offer them.

Have you ever noticed that when there is something that other people do that especially infuriates you,
it's something you're guilty of yourself?

(I think I hear an echo... 
something about a beam...
and a splinter...
in someone's eye!!??

Well I've heard that. 
And I've diagnosed myself of many irritating foibles by heeding it.
But I knew this victim thing wasn't one of those. 
No way, buddy.
Not me. 
I don't play victim. 
Because I know better
I know that if someone is a "victim", it's because they choose to be. 
(NO they didn't choose bad things to happen. But they choose whether they will sit in the chair labeled "victim" or stand on the dais labeled "survivor and conqueror".)
Especially when it comes to Circumstances.

I once had a conversation with someone wherein they were unhappy for someone who wasn't happy with their life. This person was very well-intentioned, and was trying to make sure blame for the unhappiness was not laid on the unhappy person. 
But they said what was, in that instance, the most damning thing there is to say: 
"She's a victim."
I laid out the reminder that "There are no victims" and got an even worse response:
"Oh, I know, I know! But she's a victim of Circumstances."
Which, being translated, says to me:
"Her life doesn't flow along all peaches and roses like the ones in fluffy books, so she's chosen accept entropy and pity herself for the choice, and we should pity her too." 
Um, NO.

So's real life.
What are we going to do about it?
I love what is coming to be called (or maybe it's always been called that and I'm just finding out about it) The Third Way, or The Third Alternative. There are several bloggers I like to read who regularly point people in that direction; Assume Love does it consistently, like here, here, and here.
While these are marriage blogs, showing how to insinuate The Third Alternative into your marriage, the implications are true for all of life, all of our relationships, all of our choices. 

What does this have to do with my losing my temper?
The fact that I settled into the rut that shuts out The Third Alternative.
The fact that I forgot that I do have choices and decisions to make.
The fact that I played victim to my circumstances rather than used them.

So I gave myself a good talking to, reminded myself that "There are no victims", that no matter what is happening, I can always choose my response. 
I will NOT play victim.
I hope you won't either, life is so much better when we don't.

1 comment:

  1. I am feeling convicted by this reminder. I fall into the victim role constantly with those closest to me. Not to mention feeling victimized by inanimate objects (like dishes in the sink)! I've been reading a lot of discussion about acceptance in the last few days. Perhaps I'm supposed to be learning something?