Victim Syndrome (‘Are You A Victim of the Victim Syndrome’) – by Insead
Via “Insead,” (this is in PDF format):
Do you know people who always behave like victims? People who blame others when bad things happen to them?
And do they blame their family, partner, people at work, or any number of things that they perceive to be victimizing them? … and if you have ever tried helping them, have you discovered that “rescuing” them from the trouble they are in can be an excruciating process?
Do you resent the way every bit of advice you offer is brushed aside or rejected, often contemptuously?
If any of these observations apply, you may be dealing with people who suffer from the victim syndrome (Fenichel, 1945; Zur, 1994).
These are people who always complain about the “bad things that happen” in their lives, due to circumstances beyond their control. Nothing feels right to them. Trouble follows them whereever they go.
This is not to suggest that they are making it up. On the contrary, there is always truth in their stories.
Bad things happen to all of us; that’s life. It’s not a rose garden. But there are many different ways of dealing with the difficulties that come our way.
Most of us, when faced with life’s obstacles, do something about them and get on with it.
But people with a victim mentality are incapable of doing so.
Their negative outlook on life transforms every setback into a major drama.
…. Worse, people with a victim mentality are very difficult to handle. they have an extremely fatalistic outlook on life.
Because they believe they have no control over the way events unfold, they have a poor sense of responsibility. Every negative outcome in their life is attributed to people or circumstances beyond their control.
Every effort made to help them, or to present a solution to their predicament, is met by a huge arsenal of reasons why it will not work, some of them quite ingenious.