Why would anyone need a scapegoat? The answer has a lot to do with the concept of scapegoating and the purpose it serves – a way to try to hide problems that they cannot face. Toxic Families Who Scapegoat.
Family bullies with secrets are motivated to find a smoke screen for secrets blowing up in their face.
A Page From Bully Online, Issues Related To Bullying, Website of the UK National Bullying Advice Line, Bullying In The Family. “Those Who Can, Do. Those Who Can’t, Bully.” A favourite tactic of the bully (or bullies) in the family is to set people against each other, from Issues Related to Bullying
“A favourite tactic of the bully in the family is to set people against each other. The benefits to the bully are that:
a) the bully gains a great deal of gratification (a perverse form of satisfaction) from encouraging and provoking argument, quarreling and hostility, and then from watching others engage in adversarial interaction and destructive conflict, and
b) the ensuing conflict ensures that people’s attention is distracted and diverted away from the cause of the conflict
Bullies within the family, especially female bullies, are masters (mistresses?) of manipulation and are fond of manipulating people through their emotions (eg guilt) and through their beliefs, attitudes and perceptions. Bullies see any form of vulnerability as an opportunity for manipulation, and are especially prone to exploiting those who are most emotionally needy. Elderly relatives, those with infirmity, illness, those with the greatest vulnerability, or those who are emotionally needy or behaviourally immature family members are likely to be favourite targets for exploitation.
The family bully encourages and manipulates family members etc to lie, act dishonourably and dishonestly, withhold information, spread misinformation, and to punish the target for alleged infractions, ie the family members become the bully’s unwitting (and sometimes witting) instruments of harassment.
Bullies are adept at distorting peoples’ perceptions with intent to engender a negative view of their target in the minds of family members, neighbours, friends and people in positions of officialdom and authority; this is achieved through undermining, the creation of doubts and suspicions, and the sharing of false concerns, etc. This poisoning of people’s minds is difficult to counter, however explaining the game in a calm articulate manner helps people to see through the mask of deceit and to understand how and why they are being used as pawns.
When close to being outwitted and exposed, the bully feigns victimhood and turns the focus on themselves – this is another example of manipulating people through their emotion of guilt, eg sympathy, feeling sorry, etc. Female serial bullies are especially partial to making themselves the centre of attention by claiming to be the injured party whilst portraying their target as the villain of the piece. When the target tries to explain the game, they are immediately labelled “paranoid”. Attention-seeking behaviour is common with emotionally immature people……..”