Can you be vulnerable without being a victim?

The obvious answer, of course, is yes.
My subconscious however does not seem to realise that.
Opening up, sharing weakness, it makes me feel like I’m indulging in a victim complex.
So does relying on others and admitting that I long for it.
How does overcome reluctance to let down walls, and what’s wrong with being a victim anyway?

“The victim stance is powerful.
Always morally right,
never accountable,
forever entitled to sympathy.”

Surviving something traumatic does not necessarily turn you into a victim.
There’s victims and survivors.
I have a deep, visceral fear of being seen clinging to my trauma as an explanation for my behaviour.
It makes me feel helpless and out of control, allowing my past to have power over me.
But those who accept agency for their current lives, those who understand that their trauma doesn’t define them, they can outgrow their pain. Right?

Vulnerability not addressed turns into weakness.

Maybe this is all a remnant of feeling like I need to be a perfect little girl.
The darker parts of my personality, the jealousy, the resentments, they do not fit this image.
By trying to be perfect, I’m being anything but.
It’s by acknowledging that there are areas to work on that they do not take over.
Maybe it’s this very hesitation to appear imperfect that is the tallest wall I’ve build so far.

Vulnerability is not winning or losing;
it’s having the courage to show up and be seen
when we have no control over the outcome.
Vulnerability is not weakness;
it’s our greatest measure of courage.”

– Brene Brown

The real question is this:
What is it within us (okay, me) that equates intimacy with weakness?
Why do I bring in a power dynamic in space that should treat everyone equal?
Whatever it is, I know that healing takes time.
It won’t be self-knowledge or willpower that will do it, but an utter acceptance of all my parts.
Truth is, everyone is at times a victim in their life, but if we’re still here, we’re all survivors.

2 thoughts on “Can you be vulnerable without being a victim?

Add yours

  1. This is a great question we have to keep asking. We can’t mix up the two. Vulnerability is a necessary part of humanity and too many people are living in fear. It is so important for us to find the courage to let people in.

    Liked by 2 people

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