Scapegoating Is The Purposeful Damaging Of A Human Being

"Scapegoating" usually begins during childhood. It's a process of methodical targeting of an individual that increases over time. An growing circle of people are encouraged to believe various negative things about a person, most of which is greatly exaggerated or completely made up. Others are encouraged to see the person in a negative light, often as  unstable, burdensome, self-centered, or aggressive. They are encouraged to treat the person poorly, and discouraged from treating them properly or giving them positive attention.

The target is nearly always a child whom a person has resentment, jealousy, or envy toward, or whom they feel guilt or shame for something they've done to them, or because they failed to protect them from someone else. Sometimes a scapegoat has been deemed a "burden" because they have chronic physical illness or disability, and sometimes it's because they're physically different in some way than the majority of the group, but neither of these are the actual reasons; the real motivation still lies in the emotional issues of others around the person.

When a new person comes into contact with the group, they are often immediately guided to believe negative things about the scapegoat, and they are usually blocked, especially at first, from getting to know the scapegoat directly, WITHOUT the influence of one of the controllers in the group, or the main controller, who makes themselves into a social "gateway" between the target person and everyone else.

New people are told in a sideways, innocent-sounding way that the person is someone not to be trusted, not to be believed, and not to be liked, not to be helped, and not to be respected, and not to be included, and this is done before others get a chance to form any kind of bond with the person, or form their own impression and opinion of the person. More distant friends and relatives are also told, and often encouraged to spread the negative beliefs about the person in their respective groups.

It's a sinister, terrible, genuinely damaging thing to do to a person, especially a child, and yet it's not uncommon at all. It's done by people all the time, in families, community groups, religious groups, school, businesses, and "friendship" groups. Those who do it usually MINIMIZE IT drastically, and will deny causing any harm or damage, and then will often blame the targeted person for anything negative that's happened, ironically, apparently unaware that doing so reveals the scapegoating tactic.

Those who do it also often deny that it happens at all, or that it causes any "real damage". Since the goal of Scapegoating is to diminish a targeted human being in all ways, they will CONTINUE trying to do it when they're called out about doing it, often saying the target is "just crazy" or "oversensitive", or is really as "bad" as they said they were and therefore apparently deserve (?!) to be a Scapegoat/ bully target.

Scapegoats are also usually blocked from participating in things that other children in the community are doing, and their friendships are often either sabotaged or taken over (the controlling person tries to get the friend to be closer to them than to the target.)

Scapegoats are often blocked from doing things to build their academic or work career, or projects may be directly sabotaged or stopped. The motive behind this is both an immediate "fix" feeling of control, which is the fuel for the effort, and preventing or stopping the scapegoat from achieving goals or making progress, which would build their reputation, success, and confidence, and also make them more attractive to others (in various ways). .

Targets are often abused or neglected before the actual scapegoating occurs, which can be the catalyst for the targeting. It's a primitive reaction, but common; if the group destroys the credibility, reputation, and self-confidence of the victim, then the "problem" goes away, without anyone having to be accountable, and without the victim being given proper care or protection to recover (which would expose what was done to them, and also would take effort.)

When a favored person in the group was the abuser or neglector, the victim is usually scapegoated so the favored person is not held accountable. 

Only an adult person with tendencies toward control and insecurity instigates scapegoating, or allows children to do it. Those with certain mental illnesses may do it as well, often due to having very weak boundaries, or skewed perception, they may actually be misinterpreting things that the target does and says, and then "reports" these misinterpretations as complaints to others (who apparently don't check up on the reality of the situation, or who are also mentally ill so they happily believe these "reports".)

Adults can be scapegoated as well, however the damage to the person's life and wellness is usually more profound when it's done to a child since it's a direct attack on a person's sense of self, self-esteem, self-image, and feeling of belonging in the world.


It's important to note that Scapegoating cannot occur in a emotionally and mentally healthy group. The high number of occurrences of it reveals a disturbing trend of mental unhealthiness in modern cultures. It's not surprising in regions that are obvious with oppressive and abusive behaviors toward certain members, but it's very common in so-called "free" and "wealthy" cultures as well, causing destruction of the culture person by person from the inside.