The Martyr Manipulation
We all know who they are, you may even be one. In fact, from time to time we have all worn the cloak of the Martyr.
But wait?! A Martyr is defined as a Hero in the dictionary?! Furthermore it is written: A religious person who refuses to deny his religion and is killed for it is an example of a martyr. There are several celebrated martyrs in history.
At what point did being called a Martyr become an insult? It’s an insult when the person didn’t actually die. Because they’re alive and acting as they’ve died for a cause. If someone is really a martyr, as in having died for their cause, their survivors in the cause will not use the term as an insult. For example, a person who takes on the responsibility for their aging parents but who makes sure everyone knows just how difficult it is.
Where in lies the manipulation? The martyr launches a proposal in which the ‘other’ is to agree too. Such as ‘I will do for you…” and you will receive it. Since it is disguised as a gift or offering, the ‘other’ is usually completed to take the help, or advice or offers. This builds a foundation of resentment within the relationship. This happens often in the parent-child relationship, but is an addiction in many relationships. Even acquaintances.