Among those who write about abuse, many are quick to label those who have experienced abuse as “survivors.” The term is meant to be empowering, reminding people of how far they have come, & what they survived. While the term survivor can do this for many people, it also can be shaming to others.
Some people, especially those who have only recently learned they were abused, may feel ashamed because they feel they should be “over it” by now or at least further along in their healing. Those who haven’t got the luxury of a good support system also may be subject to shame by the term survivor. But, almost anyone who has been abused can feel at least some shame when hearing that term. There is such a pressure to get over things these days, even by the most well meaning (yet clueless) people. Not “getting over” something fast enough for someone’s liking can make anyone feel ashamed.
Personally, I think everyone has the right to label themselves however works for them. If you are empowered by “survivor”, then by all means, call yourself one & do it proudly! If you aren’t, that is nothing to be ashamed of. Everyone is different. There is no shame in thinking of yourself as a victim. In fact, that is what I do because it reminds me that what was done to me wasn’t my fault. I am in no way to blame for the abusive narcissists in my life doing their best to hurt me, however, there are still times I wonder what I did to deserve the things that have been done to me. Reminding myself I was an innocent victim helps to keep such thoughts to a minimum. Doing this may not work for everyone, but it works for me.
Whatever people think of you ultimately doesn’t really matter, so please do your best not to be influenced by their opinions. What God thinks of you, what you think of yourself & what those you love think of you are the only opinions that should count.