Firstly, a very belated New Year to all my wonderful and supporting readership. I apologize for not writing a post earlier, but 2017 has already been…how do I put this, rather tumultuous in the short amount of days since the “new year.”
I coined the term ‘ABPD’ for several reasons: to turn around and to avoid saying the derogatory sounding ‘ABCD’ that exists in our Indian communities and to help others embrace their unique identities. There is absolutely no reason why any individual should feel they need to conform to one set of customary beliefs or another. Find your own niche, your own beliefs, understand your roots and communicate them through the open airways which we share. It is everyone’s responsibility to simply listen, but whether you listen merely to give a response or to understand is your own call.
Anyhow, as you may have read and perhaps the sole reason why you decided to open up this post is to hear what I mean by “victim.”
Before I get into details; I must give insight as to where I am coming from: I am a Malayalee girl. I was raised with my roots and traditions close to heart, and have grown to be very appreciative of the culture that I was blessed to be born unto.
This being said; however, being a part of this community has brought me so much pain and suffering that I, myself can hardly digest it all. Yes, I am a Malayalee, but I was born and raised in America, so I grew up in the best of both worlds, and one life-skill I was nurtured to have was in being straightforward and open.
I must clarify this last statement – I am straightforward and open with those whom I feel comfortable and at ease with. I will not open myself to simply anybody and this is solely because of the various experiences I have foregone, but I will be honest.
It is because of this honesty; along with sincerity towards others that often places me in a vulnerable position. I return to the Indian community tidbit: I believe I have disclosed that I was/am actively involved in various cultural nonprofit organizations and have even held board positions on some of the foundations. To me, several years ago, to represent the people of my community was a tremendous privilege and I was honored to serve.
Yet, I have written in a post a little while back the belittling drama that occurs is pitiful, especially towards an ‘ABPD’ like myself – hence why I decided to take a step back and remove myself from the community that is essentially to “…build relations amongst members…”
Nonetheless, those were times of the past. It is ancient history for me, but I somehow get intermixed with these issues/drama every now and then and I typically get thrown under the bus.
I never intend to hurt anyone or ruin relations, but if someone does feel as such – I apologize. As I mentioned before, I am straightforward and open with those whom I feel comfortable with and that could mean I misjudged those who I “feel” this superficial comfort level with…
I bring this up simply because I am tired.
I am tired of becoming the usual victim. I am tired of thinking that because of my age, you know more than I do when all it is that you/I may know more of is of how easily life slips away through our hands. If you want to get my age involved and belittle me, go for it – but understand, as cliché as this statement is: age is just a number.
I am tired of trying to right a wrong where no right may come out of. I am tired of trying to fix things for the sake of relationships and group satisfaction. I have been emotionally drained throughout portions of my life, and this in part of that.
Maybe it’s just easier to blame a person like me? Petite, young, discovering “herself?” I mean, one of the definitions of victim is “one that is acted on and usually adversely affected by a force or agent” and that is what happens… a lot.
Victim blaming is not just about avoiding culpability… it’s also about avoiding vulnerability. The more innocent a victim, the more threatening they are.
Victims threaten our sense that the world is a safe and moral place, where good things happen to good people and bad things happen to bad people. When bad things happen to good people, it implies that no one is safe, that no matter how good we are, we too could be vulnerable. The idea that misfortune can be random, striking anyone at any time, is a terrifying thought, and yet we are faced every day with evidence that it may be true.
Victim blaming tendencies are rooted in the belief in a just world, a world where actions have predictable consequences and people can control what happens to them. It is captured in common phrases like “what goes around comes around” and “you reap what you sow.” We want to believe that justice will come to wrongdoers, whereas good, honest people who follow the rules will be rewarded.
For far too long, I have been told to act a certain way, be a certain way… to be docile to those in the “industry” (which I no longer care for), and to those close to me…
I no longer care.
Research has claimed – and not at all surprisingly – people who believe the world is a just place will be more likely to be happier and less depressed…but with what good comes in life, there is always a cost: the empathy that we show for others suffering will reduce, and we may even contribute to their suffering by increasing stigmatization.
So is the only alternative to believe in a just world and feel that nagging sense of helplessness towards others? Is the only way to avoid being victim to be stubborn and cold-hearted or to simply just cut them out from your lives?
Not at all.
People can believe that the world is full of injustice but also believe that they are capable of making the world a more just place through their own actions. One way to help make the world a better place to fight the impulse to rationalize others suffering and to recognize that it could have been easily us in their shoes.
This recognition can be unnerving, but it may also be the only way that we can truly open our hearts to others and what they are having to forego… to help them feel supported and less alone. What the world may lack in justice we can at least try to make up for in compassion.
So…I no longer will play the “usual victim.” Blame me all you wish to if it relieves you… I’ll take it, but just know what my true intention was. I aim to be sincere, humble, and kind to as many people as I can and to stop any unjust actions that may have taken place…If that can’t be fathomed… then may peace be with you 🙂
I again apologize for the delay in posting, and to start out the year with a post like this…but I believe that in being honest, there is no reason to say sorry…
But please…those who feel socially obliged to fit in with a group or people in society, know that you don’t have to…be your own group. I reiterate that at the end of the day, it is you and only you, so kindly remember who YOU are, and not who you are to others.
On a lighter note…to explain my lack of posting: I am working on a project close to heart in relations to the “Voice of ‘ABPD’ notion I have undertook, so stay tuned!