Victim Mentality....the Real Enemy, Not ADHD

I've done a little research about this topic and revisited it again wondering what the differences are to victim mentality and Narcissism or the like in disorders.  It does appear that there is an overlapp in some ways but a true Narcissist it seems will use victim mentality as a tool or weapon in their arsonal to use as needed just to get his/her needs met.  In's a distorted version of victim mentality so you can say that you can have one without the other but.... you can have Narcissism without victim mentality if that makes sense.

But with that in can have just victim mentality across the board and not be Narcissism and here is where I think most of the problems with ADHD begin and end in my mind.  There's a difference between being a victim of something and just plain victim mentality and I think these two things get easily confused and mixed together.  To be a victim of something does not require or imply that you suffer from victim mentality and that's where this difference becomes a problem for everyone else.  From everhting that I have read here on this forum and within the stories that people come here to tell.....I see and hear victim mentality at the core of these conflicts whether it be for the person who suffers from it, or the people they are with.

I know there have been times in my past where I suffered from this kind of thinking although not chronic in how I saw myself or behaved in general.  What I discovered was that this only came about when I did something that went against myself in some way and usually it had to do with being a "fixer. " Being a "fixer" is not being a "rescuer" or necessarily a poeple "pleaser" but it does share one thing in common.  It is done on some level for your own self interest or to get something out of it.

Interesting to note here.....I became a "fixer" to avoid something bad happening to me on my end.  In my fixing the problem before it happened....I avoided the fall out from it if I could find a way to make that happen.  This of course came from an abusive home envirionment.  Kids should not have to do things like this to avoid the kind of retaliation or abuse from a problem there own parents have which they did nothing to create.  Having said that.....becoming good at predicting trouble before it happened and running interference became a skill that I aquired along the way.  I got really good at it!!

In the literal sense of the word.....I was a victim of this kind of abuse but .....I became proactive enough to do something about it at the same time.  This was a good a it gets as a child in not developing victim mentality since I gained some control of my own environment that succeeded in getting some relieve.  That in itself was all it took to prevent this kind of thinking from taking over but....not to say that this didn't have some unforseen consequences later in life despite this skill having some good positive sides as well.

For someone with ADHD....I think we are predisposed to becoming victims in the first place but as I just metioned....that is no guarentee that it will turn into  full blown chronic victim mentalty, victims position for the rest of your life as this did not happen with me.  From what it appears like however.....victim mentality is not confined just to ADHD, Narcissism or any other disorder you would like to include along with it.  It seems that this kind of thinking is pretty indescrimanent in scope and does not play favorites between race, creed or gender.

I really believe at this point that if you were to step back and look at victim mentality alone and take a closer look would see where most of the problems you face are coming from.

Here's an excerpt I found from Dr Judith Orloff about being in a relationship with a victim.  Down in there you will run across the reason why I have had many of my own issues with dealing with or getting caught up in relationships with victims in my past.  Being a pleaser or a fixer are two possible compliments to a victim mentality and why we get involved with someone like this in the first place. 

Speaking for myself here.....I was still getting something out of it to stay with someone who was like this.  As I now have found that this was a maladaptive strategy that served me once when I had no other options..... but it does not keep serving me to be that way now having other options instead.  My victim mentality came from not knowing how to do this (or avoid it in the first place by not volunteering for it so I could keep being a fixer).....when I found myself in the same situation where I was before......either with a victim or a Narcissist....and having to try and head them off at the pass before they would do something that would cause me trouble on my end. 

Being good at something is only good when it's appropriate.  When it's not and you keep doing it anyway is on your end, not the other persons reguardess.  This is what I have discovered and why that is.  It only makes you a victim to it where you were not before when you do this.


Strategies to Deal with a Victim Mentality

Learn if You're in a Relationship with Someone Who is a Victim   Judith Orloff M.D.

As a psychiatrist I teach my patients the importance of learning how to deal effectively with draining people. In my new book, I discuss one of these types which I call “The Victim Mentality.”

The victim grates on you with a poor-me attitude, and is allergic to taking responsibility for their actions. People are always against them, the reason for their unhappiness. They portray themselves as unfortunates who demand rescuing, and they will make you into their therapist. As a friend, you want to help, but you become overwhelmed by their endless tales of woe: A boyfriend stormed out…again; a mother doesn’t understand; a diva-boss was ungrateful. When you suggest how to put an end to the pity party, they’ll say, “Yes…but,” then launch into more unsolvable gripes. These vampires may be so clingy they stick to you like flypaper.


If you typically get drawn into fixing other people’s problems, chances are, you’ve attracted numerous victims into your life. To identify if you are in relationship with a victim mark Yes or No to the following characteristics:

Is there anyone in your life who often appears inconsolably oppressed or depressed? Yes/No
Are you burned out by their neediness? Yes/No
Do these people always blame “bad luck” or the unfairness of others for their problems? Yes/No
Do you screen your calls or say you’re busy in order to dodge their litany of complaints? Yes/No
Does their unrelenting negativity compromise your positive attitude? Yes/No

Give each “Yes” response one point and count your score. If your score is three or more then you are probably in relationship with at victim. Interacting with this type of person can cause you to be irritated or drained and will make you want to avoid them.

Strategies to Deal with a Victim Mentality from Emotional Freedom (link is external):

Set Limits with an Iron Hand and a Velvet Glove

I love what Mahatma Gandhi says: “A 'No' uttered from deepest conviction is better and greater than a 'Yes' merely uttered to please, or, what is worse, to avoid trouble.” Kind but firm limit setting is healthy. People must take responsibility for their own lives. You’re not in the business of fixing anyone. Enabling always backfires. Without limits, a relationship isn’t on equal ground; and no one wins. You might well feel, “I’m sick and tired of your complaints.” But instead, using a more measured tone, here’s how to address some common situations.

Use these methods to deter victims

With a friend or relative 

Smile and say kindly, “Our relationship is important to me, but it’s not helpful to keep feeling sorry for yourself. I can only listen for five minutes unless you’re ready to discuss solutions.” Get ready to be guilt-tripped. If the victim, irate, comes back with, “What kind of friend are you?” don’t succumb to that ploy. Just reply, “I’m a great friend and I love you, but this is all I can offer.”