I think many people are confused about the traits of a strong independent woman.
They see a woman who’s outspoken, in your face, and will tell you exactly what they think of you, and think she is a strong woman. So many victims will say they need to tell the narcissist what they think of him so he doesn’t think they are weak or that he won.
There are alot of people who view victims of domestic abuse as being weak and needy, when often times the opposite is true.
I had someone say I am “just like your mother”, strong and independent. I was shocked! and said as much; “my mother is opinionated and judgemental, but she is far from strong and independent. I have known women who will give a man shit using language like the proverbial logger. I’ve known women who will make demands of those around her and not back down because she thinks she deserves their compliance and “respect”. Women who will argue, loudly! and angrily because they must always be right, (even though they don’t have a fucking clue what they’re talking about). They will declare someone a loser, stupid, or an asshole based on superficial appearances, or consider someone successful based on outward appearances.
Usually this type of person is in fact quite insecure and very dependent on the approval of others and their opinions tend to change with popular opinion. They are not narcissists but often times they end up inadvertently being the flying monkeys of the narcissist. They are dangerous, because they don’t stand by their convictions or their convictions aren’t based on facts or educated.
A truly strong woman is not in your face, she is not judgemental and makes her decisions about people based on her own experience and gut instincts. A strong woman will stand by her convictions because she has formed them after educating herself and personal experience. She is willing to listen to an opposing opinion without attacking the other person, because her opinion is based on her experience and knowledge and she is confident in her decisions. She will defend her position calmly with facts and isn’t threatened by someone disagreeing with her.
A strong woman doesn’t make rash decisions and weighs the facts.
A strong woman doesn’t go with popular opinion and has strong moral convictions. She defends the people she cares about and will have your back no matter what. She may not have many friends, because she takes the job of “friend” very seriously. She is a loyal and devoted partner who will “stand by her man” when many less strong women would have walked away.
A strong woman isn’t with a man for his money or because she needs a man to take care of her. She is there because of love and will sacrifice her own resources and security because she is confident she can recoup any losses and she doesn’t gauge a person’s value on what they have.
What hurt me far more than being hit by my ex was, the people I loved and trusted the most in my life turning against me because they thought I was weak. (Besides the fact that family of all people especially should be there for you when you are feeling weak)
What they were calling weak was the same self sacrifice and loyalty they had taken for granted from me for years. The same strength they had grown to rely on when their lives fell apart or they had no one in their corner.
A strong woman gets on with life and will prove over and over again what she is made of, without saying a word.
Don’t allow the narcissist to bait you into becoming the psycho vindictive bitch he says you are.
It was when I gave up trying to defend myself and accepted that I only had control over my own actions and not the actions or opinions of the narc or the people who believed his lies, that I was able to find peace. When I made the conscious decision to always live true to my core self and to hell with the rest of the world is when my life started to fall into place.
I didn’t want to remain a victim so I didn’t make it part of my identity. I decided a couple of years ago to just carry on, being me, living honestly, true to my core self; more than ever before in my life. Of course I care what people think of me, I want people to like me, but it doesn’t affect how I operate, I remain true to me.
The other day I was telling a couple of women I have known for about 3 years about being in an abusive relationship because I felt it was relevant to our discussion about the trailer I am fixing up. I didn’t think they thought I was weak, I think the information just gave their opinion of me more depth.
The thing is; I know I am not weak. That knowledge is my secret power. It is that knowledge that puts a smile on my face when someone under estimates what I am capable of.
I always thought I was strong, I had gone through some stuff in my life that alot of people never have to face and I did it with calm control at a young age. I knew I had the strength within me to handle the situation and at those times I had family support also. But I discovered how tremendously strong I am when I faced something I didn’t think I could survive and made it through, totally on my own. Some people never discover how strong they actually are.
The first thought and the first thing I say to a woman who tells me she just left an abuser after, say; 20 plus years is, “You must be an incredibly strong woman.” Not just to leave, but to have stayed 20 years.
I compare it to my dog, Stella. I find it interesting that she is the most nonaggressive dog at the dog park. She stands there observing. Some dogs are just assholes, they will pick up every dog in the park, regardless of size, but they never ever pick up Stella.
There are other dogs that will roll over and show their belly in submission the minute some dog shows them aggression. Stella never shows her belly.
The minute she sees a dog being picked on she wades in and gets in their face barking. If they don’t stop she blocks them with her body and as a last resort she will get her legs around the bully, throw them down and lay on them until they submit.
She never looks for confrontation but she is fearless when it happens. We were walking the other day and there was car parked with a couple in it. The guy was loudly giving the woman shit. Stella was very concerned about it and kept stopping and turning back to look at the car. After the 3rd time I told her, “Ok. Let’s go check it out”. And let her lead the way. She walked straight up to the driver’s door of the car and stared at the man and I stood on the sidewalk watching. The guy stopped yelling and looked at Stella, “Hey Buddy”, he said and then looked at me, looking at him. He stopped yelling and we went on our way.
And you know what? Everyone loves Stella.
My point is this; don’t allow your head or anyone else convince you that you are not strong. A truly strong person is not afraid to show vulnerability and be themselves because they know; whatever comes their way, they will survive it.
Also, you need to realize that the narcissist didn’t take anything from you that you didn’t give away. You always were in control and could have left any time. To confront the narcissist is not going to prove you are strong, it is only going to prove he still has control over your emotions.
Do you have an accurate view of what makes a strong woman?