Understand what a scapegoat is. The
purpose of a scapegoat is to pass responsibility onto someone else.
Usually this person is unsuspecting at first and agrees because
they are trying to get along with others. This technique of passing
the buck is very common with narcissists, sociopaths, and addicts.
Narcissists can’t allow their ego to be tarnished by an error.
Sociopaths do it for the sport of it. And addicts do it because
accepting fault in one area of their life means being accountable
Don’t accept liability. Looking back on
the two events, Monica had an opportunity in both events to be
honest with her level of responsibility. Instead, she chose to take
on things that were not her fault. This did not improve her
relationships as the two individuals just saw Monica as a pushover
and someone they can continue to take advantage of in the future.
Had she refused to be their scapegoat, a level of respect would be
achieved instead of contempt.
Review past experience. Her feelings of
frustration over being a scapegoat ran deep. Upon further
examination, Monica realized that her brother used to get her in
trouble for his offenses all the time. Her parents, trying to be
impartial, told the kids to “work it out.” Her brother’s idea of
this was to threaten harm to her if she didn’t agree to take blame.
As a demonstration of his determination, he even lit her stuffed
animals on fire. Her willingness at work to make excuses for her
boss and assistant was subconsciously rooted in the fear her
Stop being the scapegoat. Once Monica
separated out trauma from past events, she was able to set new
boundaries. She began by issuing a written warning with her
assistant about her late arrivals and notified Human Resources of
her suspicious behavior. Then she researched narcissistic bosses
and found other ways to feed his ego. This pacified her boss and
neutralized her assistant. Despite a couple of attempts to thwart
her boundaries, Monica remained firm.
Expose the abuser. Monica knew that
eventually she would need to expose the scapegoating technique to
prevent other employees from damage. But doing this too soon would
mean jeopardizing her job, so she waited and watched. When she saw
another employee taking the fall for yet another blunder by her
boss, Monica spoke to that person and advised them not to take on
the blame. This frustrated her boss, but by then, Monica had
established a good enough relationship with Human Resources that
her job was secured. Once Human Resources caught on, it was only a
matter of time before her boss was removed.
About the Podcast
Understanding Today's Narcissist is a podcast dedicated to separating fact from fiction when it comes to dealing with a narcissist in your life. Your host is Christine Hammond, MS, LMHC, a licensed psychotherapist, speaker and author. For more information, visit www.growwithchristine.com
Looking for help with dealing with the narcissist in your life? Visit http://growwithchristine.com/narcissism/ to sign up for online support!