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I got this book, it is excellent. Very detailed and very well written as well. Both my husband and I come from dysfunctional family systems. I have been replicating my scapegoat role in his family, their scapegoat was his father until I came around and took over the role by asking about the pink elephant in his family which is his mother. My husband is his mothers designated "caretaker" while his brother is the "hero" My point is, I have just read chapter 2 and I can relate to how it formed the scapegoat role in my family, but I also see the patterns in my husbands family. So in your opinion, are these patterns that create a scapegoat role similar to what creates other roles in the family as well. I felt like Pillari was focused on scapegoating but what she was talking about also could be applied generally to creating dysfunctional roles in family systems in general.
I am the family scapegoat and my family of origin works very hard to convince me that there is something wrong with me. They set me up in alot of catch 22 situations. For instance, I am severely allergic to cats, so they fill their home with cats (5 to be exact) and then when I can't go over (because I go into anaphalactic shock) they go on about what a *bad* daughter I am, for rejecting them and all. My mother, the one that took me to the hospital when I was in anaphalactic shock as a child even needed to be convinced at Christmas that I do indeed have allergies, my eyes swelling shut and my inability to breath were not hints enough for her in addition to my frequent trips to the hospital as a child, or the fact that she was the one that took me to the allergist and had me tested. She was demonizing me for not coming at Christmas while my relatives convinced her that I have allergies. They act all victimized by me, like I am staying away for childish reasons and say things like "If that is how I want to be then fine", they even outright lie and claim they were not invited to events instead of just admitting that they decided not to go on their own. Last easter, by sitting on the organ stool (incidently the only place in their home not covered in cat hair) I just ruined my dads whole organ. He came scurrying over and rushed to find the A key that he had to glue on last week lamenting the whole time about how I ruined it and he just fixed it too. Then when I look surprized at his over reaction he tells everyone that I "left in a huff" for no good reason. I didn't even leave in a huff, I was just dumbfounded by his reaction. So in my situation, my parents work very had to convince me that there is indeed something wrong with me. Any success in my life is profusely denied.
Toggle Commented Aug 2, 2010 on The Scapegoat at Kellevision
Yes I was definitely the truth teller of the family. My aunt was pregnant with my cousin, I was a child. She was smoking pott when we got there. She saw us and her reaction was a cutsie "oops...caught me!" My cousin (who has passed away since) was born with significant defects. My parents convered for her, saying that he got that way because my aunt ate Macaroni and Cheeze while she was pregnant. Everyone else went along with this but me, I would say "uh no, she did drugs while she was pregnant" or "I don't think so, I am sure if macaroni and cheeze did that to developing fetuses it have been pulled of the shelves a long long time ago" I was the one that did not let go of the truth and oddly enough, my parents defined me as if I was this very aunt. I was even *mistakenly* called her name several times. It was like my dad made me his sister and then punished me like I was his sister, so I even scapegoated for the dynamics in my Fathers Family of Origin. I am nothing like my aunt, nothing at all, but they still maintain that and the times that my life shows that I am not just like her, infact not like her at all, I am actually disowned for not playing the role they have defined for me. This is the one example that I think of when I read this post. I am happy to have found this blog, not much written on the topic of scapegoating at all. Thank you...
I am the scapegoat of my family of origin and I have fallen into this trap at most of my jobs, and I have been very confused as to what goes wrong in the work place until reading this. There was one co-worker that I now that I read this I see that this was the whole basis of our relationship. No wonder when he left his job we just had nothing in common anymore. Thank you for opening my eyes, I am in the midst of a career change (for the sake of my kids more then anything else) and I won't be repeating this pattern now that I am aware.
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Aug 1, 2010