1. a person harmed, injured, or killed as a result of a crime, accident, or other event or action.
  2. a person who is tricked or duped.
  3. a living creature killed as a religious sacrifice.

Source: Google


The definition of the term victim has been distorted. To the point that there is a considerable chance we will drawl a negative inference of someone who identifies as a victim. There is also a likelihood we would downright refuse to use the word victim to identify ourselves.

Being unable to define our experiences can add to confusion we already feel. It can heighten the impact of the experience leading to deeper trauma.

We use words to express ourselves, define our reality, relate to our environment and find our place in the world. If we do not have a word to define our experiences, or if the word used to define our experience inherently has a negative connotation associated with it, we can be silenced into not sharing our experiences. We lie to ourselves, tell ourselves we are “OK” or that we do not have the right to feel upset or angry. We invalidate ourselves. We push to be “survivors”, and we create an environment of denial.

By reminding ourselves of the true definition of the word victim, and by removing any stigmatization that society and culture have given it, we help create an environment filled with compassion for others and for ourselves. We acknowledge our vulnerabilities and our weaknesses. We do not allow perpetrators to blame those they hurt. We allow victims to work through and process their experience. We give victims a voice.

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