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Scapegoated children: Why do they become sitting ducks for abusers?

Scapegoated children of narcissistic parents will often reinvent their own child-hood trauma by choosing severely personality disordered partners with either narcissistic, sociopathic, schizoid, or psychopathic traits. Individuals with severe personality disordered traits will scapegoat anybody with whom they become involved with, because these personality types will not take responsibility for their own behaviour.

The scapegoat only knows one type of relationship, and that is the scapegoat/ narcissistic relationship – which they originally played out with their narcissistic parent. The development of this relationship between the parent and the child became an investment in the narcissist’s eyes. An investment which would deflect from their own shortcomings by blaming someone else.

Why does the scapegoat reinvent their own trauma? 

Lets take a look at the relationship between the narcissistic parent and the scapegoat child to find the answer to this question.

The narcissistic parent ‘murdered,’ and ‘annihilated’ the scapegoat’s soul. It is not unusual for the narcissistic parent to tell neighbours, work colleagues, all of the siblings, the pastor, the pastor’s wife, aunty’s and uncles, and the man down the road, that their child, ‘ the scapegoat,’ is crazy.

Why does the narcissistic parent do this? 

Because the scapegoat had the audacity to correct the narcissist, and to challenge the family system. This isn’t always the reason, and reasons vary. However, this is a common reason why the narcissist will set out to destroy the scapegoat. Any slight, or the smallest of criticisms will send the narcissist into panic mode, through fear of being exposed.

The scapegoat has been trained since birth to believe that every thing negative that goes on inside of the relationships with their family members, is in actual fact, the scapegoat’s fault. If one of the children hits the scapegoat, the scapegoat is at fault. If the scapegoat hits the other child when the child called them a name, than the scapegoat is at fault. If the scapegoat calls the sibling a name, and the sibling hits them, the scapegoat is still at fault.

The scapegoat is shamed daily. Things are said to the scapegoat that will never be said to the other children; and these phrases have the capacity to put the child into a state of inconceivable mental anguish.

The above examples are core reasons as to why the scapegoat reinvents their trauma, and unknowingly gravitates towards people who will scapegoat them.

Example phrases of the types of things that get said to the scapegoat, and about the scapegoat behind the scapegoat’s back:

  • ”You’ll push everybody away when you get older, including your partners.”
  • ”You’re just like my crazy aunty Betty who ruined her children’s lives.”
  • ”You’re just like so and so.” (who has schizophrenia by the way)
  • ”I’m so afraid you are going to end up in prison when you get older.”
  • ”I hope you don’t treat your children like my mother treated me. She was an alcoholic, drank all the money away, and destroyed her children. You should have seen the things she did to us!”
  • ”You’ve never been a happy person.”
  • ”I just don’t understand you.”
  • ” Your aunty cut the family off, and thats what you’ll do too.”

Why does the scapegoat become scapegoated again?

In adulthood the scapegoat goes out into the world and often chooses a partner exhibiting all of the scapegoat’s narcissistic parent’s traits. However, because the scapegoat child hasn’t unpacked the emotional baggage carried from childhood, and sorted each wound out one by one, they won’t be able to recognise potential red flags presented to them. These same red flags presented to them in childhood, were the adult child’s normal.

By the time the scapegoat forms a relationship with a narcissist they no longer believe their own perception of events, and are no longer confident in their assessment of people. The scapegoat’s perceptions of situations have always been invalidated by their narcissistic parent, and family of origin. Whenever they’ve had a problem in this family unit, they have become the problem. So, when problems in their relationships with controlling people begin to occur, the scapegoat blames themselves, and persists in these relationships to no avail.

The scapegoat has been brainwashed by their entire family into believing that they have it all wrong. They have been convinced by the narcissist, their siblings, and the narcissist’s minions, that if they could just change everything about them, then their relationships with the entire family would improve. These beliefs that the scapegoat has about themselves leads them to people please, and to seek approval from dangerous types.

The terribly sad thing is that the scapegoat was right all along, even at the tender age of ten.

In what state does a scapegoat enter a relationship?

The scapegoat doesn’t know what a healthy relationship is like. They have come out the other side of their childhood with poor boundary function, and have come to accept unacceptable behaviour as the norm.

The scapegoat enters their relationships with a huge vulnerability.

The scapegoat:

  • believes that at the core of them is a terribly bad human being
  • Constantly seeks approval, and behaves in a people pleasing fashion
  • has severe rejection issues, and may believe that everybody they form a relationship with will eventually reject them just like their narcissistic parent did
  • carries with them enough shame and self hatred to sink a ship
  • believes that everything they do is wrong, and that they cannot do anything right
  • most likely has ‘complex post traumatic stress disorder’
  • has most likely acted out on the shame and rage projected onto them, which has contributed to more self -shame, and more scapegoating from the family of origin; who now believe that they have the proof that the scapegoat is crazy.

What happens in the scapegoat’s intimate relationships?

The scapegoat often becomes involved with partners whom fail to take responsibility for their own behaviour, blame everybody else, and will always revert the responsibility for the problems within the relationship, back onto the scapegoat – whom often accepts all responsibility, and apologises when they shouldn’t, because of their own detrimental beliefs about self.

The scapegoat continues to try to fix the relationship by trying to fix themselves; all in hope that if they can just fix themselves, the relationship will work. It is not unusual for the scapegoat to go from narcissistic relationship to narcissistic relationship, being scapegoated by people whom have no issue blaming the scapegoat for their own shortcomings.

Some scapegoats will stay in the relationship way past its expiry date, and may even go out with a big bang (due to emotional overload) appearing as the crazy one – again. The scapegoat’s partners will most likely do to the scapegoat exactly what their narcissistic parent did to them – blame shift, and smear the scapegoat’s name with lies, and half truths. However, the perpetrator will never own up to what they did. Instead, they will only share with their minions what the scapegoat’s reaction was to absolute crazy-making, gas-lighting, and goading.

The scapegoat perpetuates their own inner wounds and self-hatred through their continuous liaisons with these kinds of perpetrators.

Why does the scapegoat continue to go from scapegoating relationship to scapegoating relationship?

The scapegoat will often enter a relationship with another personality disordered individual because they are unaware of their own attachment blue – print, which encourages them to gravitate towards narcissists’.

Until they do the recovery programme, and actually sit down with a professional therapist to discuss their relationship patterns, the scapegoat will remain in a fog type state; and will continue to blame themselves for everything that goes wrong in their future relationships.

It usually takes a few failed relationships exhibiting the same pattern before the scapegoat goes in search of answers.

The scapegoat will continue on in this pattern of destructive relationships until they accept that they are not at fault for everything, not responsible for the perpetrator’s behaviour, that they are not bad, and that they have a right to normal, healthy, loving relationships.

Scapegoats walk into relationships with a murdered soul. They often have zero confidence, no self – belief, and are a sitting duck for a crazy maker.

What happens to someone who never learned to trust?

Confuses intensity with intimacy: The scapegoat feels completely unlovable. So when a psychopath, or narcissist comes into the picture and love bombs the scapegoat, they don’t see this as a red flag, because they don’t know whats normal and whats not. Instead they mistake love – bombing as someone finally appreciating them.

Confuses Obsession with care: The scapegoat has been yearning for someone to actually like them, and see some good in them since they were born. When someone cannot get enough of them, they don’t see a problem with this. Its actually quite flattering to a scapegoat. However, a healthy person would run a mile.

Confuses control with intimacy:  Before meeting a partner, a scapegoated individual can feel out of touch with themselves, and as though their life is out of control. Their own parent never took the reigns. To someone whom has never been loved, controlling behaviour can come across to an abuse survivor as love, not control. 

The difference between the scapegoat and healthy people

Healthy people who grew up in families with healthy boundaries know the personality types to stay away from. These people know not to engage a drug addicted person, someone who drinks too much, a person with a history of violence, or a person who refuses to take responsibility for their behaviour. They know what they want in life, and they won’t settle for less.

Healthy people are confident, and they have self-love. If they notice a huge character floor, they are self – assured enough to know that the person the character floor belongs to has a screw loose – not them. The healthy person listens to their intuition, whereas the scapegoat tells their intuition to go away, and convinces themselves that they are the one with the problem, not the perpetrator.

Healthy people also know their limits. They know that someone who loves them would not deliberately go out of their way to push others to emotional extremes; whereas the scapegoat has only ever had close relationships with people who push the scapegoat to emotional extremes. A healthy person can pick a crazy maker from a mile away.

Scapegoated children are trained to accept that their perception of the narcissist is wrong, that their intuition is incorrect, and that the narcissist’s treatment of them is acceptable. Unfortunately, the scapegoat may re-enact their abuse by choosing a partner very similar to their parent.