Ever been lied to? And WORSE, have you ever felt ashamed because you believed that lie? Such as a partner having an affair, or a so-called-friend needing money, or a colleague undermining you at work. The bigger the lie, the greater the embarrassment?
It is called 'victim shaming' and there are far too many people who do it to themselves. The truth is that you have NOTHING to be ashamed of.
When I wrote my book about being the victim of a bigamist con-man people asked me if I would write the book under my own name. I was astonished that they thought I would feel the need to hide. It made me think very clearly about the situation and question why anyone would be embarrassed.
The reason people shame victims of abuse is to distance themselves and give them a false sense that this couldn’t happen to them. By labelling the victim as blame-worthy they are saying 'I’m not like that and therefore I’m safe'. That’s not a helpful or healthy reaction and those that do it are more at risk from predatory personality types than others - denial is not a protection against the lies.
Don't join in with the victim shaming. If you have been lied to, then do your best to find out the truth and stand with your head held high. Tell your story without embarrassment or shame like I did and you will be AMAZED how many others tell you the same has happened to them. In fact, I get about 2 letters/emails a week from people who have been through something similar to me - all of them thanking me for standing up to be counted. I do get occasional reviews of my book where people say I must be stupid or gullible but I understand that these people are just scared and want to blame the victim to feel safe themselves. There are FAR more people who review my book with grateful thanks for having told my story, and more still who feel it has opened their eyes to their own situation and how they feel about themselves.
So, ditch the embarrassment and stand up tall again. Show others that it is the lies and the liar that are unacceptable not the kind, empathic, caring and strong people who were genuine enough to believe them. Standing together we can change the world, and change social perceptions - but it all starts with YOU.
"A good book will change how you see the world,
a GREAT book will change how you see YOURSELF."
Get your copy of 'The Bigamist' in paperback here
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