They Always Blame Me!

For many years I have been the one who my family blames.  No matter what I do, I seem to be wrong and I'm excluded from family gatherings (Christmases, weddings and other get-togethers).  However, some of my family still use me for hospitality when it suits them!
I have tried so hard to be accepted by my two younger sisters and younger brother, their partners and children. 
I have tried to figure out why I'm excluded and realise that it started with my father who saw in me characteristics of his older brother, whom he hated and an aunt he loved to ridicule.  I was never taken seriously by my father, was ridiculed by him and regarded by him as his least favourite, least lovable child. 
I tried to build up defences against my father's abuse of me and also my sisters and brothers, as he passed his behaviour on to them.  My mother was too weak-minded to intervene much on my behalf.  
The damage of being my family's scapegoat has had terrible consequences for me.  I married when very young a man who quickly sided with my father and siblings against me.  I divorced him after a few years.  Twenty years later my second husband behaved in a similar way to my first and became a buddy of my father's and they both insulted and abused me verbally.  When I was young I made friends with people who treated me in a similar way to my family but now I have better people around me.  I have understandably always been afraid of groups and usually keep away from them.  I am therefore a bit of a loner and mistrust people, which has made me feel very lonely at times. 
My daughter has suffered at the hands of my family and, as a result, doesn't want to know them.  She advises me to keep away which I am doing now (but very late in my life unfortunately).
I am sad I couldn't have put my family behind me earlier.  Initially I think they were jealous of me as I could outsmart them in an argument. 
I don't have the strength to write about the terrible experiences I' ve had at the hands of my family.  I blame my father but I do feel my sisters and brother could have seen through my father's twisted cruelty.  It seemed that whenever there was stress in the family they turned on me and "kicked" me.  I really am a total scapegoat for them and it is very painful indeed. 
SFlyte SFlyte
9 Responses Apr 24, 2011

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I can relate, because I ended up marrying into a family whom also scapegoated me for their dysfunctional family issues so I spent 14 years being abused and mistreated...when I ran from the domestic violence to a homeless shelter, my mother's only worry was what an embarrassment I was to the family, she did not give a damn if I was hurt or when my older sister's daughter started her bs again my mother actually had the gall to blame what she did on me not taking the insult the wrong way or not being told the true version, with no blame placed on the offender and there are 101 excuses as to why they are allowed to act that way...I'm thinking about selling my home and moving out of town because I deserve better than what they have done to me during my lifetime...they don't deserve me in their lives if they are going to act like that

I feel so heart-broken. i have spend my whole life trying to make things right,Miss Gud for nothing what I seem to be doing is alienating people. I knw that God will make it right some day he is the only one who understands. Do you know the pain of the one who loves you turning their backs on you. i believe this is a learnig curve for me I must stop seeking love to other people. The only person who knows me is God. I cannot not make anyone to love me kenna mmadimabe anything I asy or touch turns sour. God will make a wy where ther seems to be no way. I AM ALWAYS JUDGED, peple make me feel worthless, I am prying for Gods strength I cant take it anymore. let me be by myself if it was ment that way. I WAS NEVER COMPLPLIMENTED FOR the good i do. God give me strength.

Thanks very much for your comments. They have been very interesting and a support to me. I have to be very careful because it is when I am feeling vulnerable that I sometimes want to try again and see if my sisters will be sisterly and sympathetic. But they never are. It takes a lifetime sometimes to understand that these people, my family, can't love me or relate well and possibly I can't love them or relate well to them either. <br />
The family dynamics are too messed up. I think it has been like this for several generations and sadly this dysfunction is passed on from parents to children to grandchildren. I notice that now that I have withdrawn from the family, they have found other scapegoats. They treat these scapegoats in a similar way to me. It's the blame game actually. <br />
If you are a family scapegoat you have to leave this toxic family sphere and find warmth, support and love outside it. This can be challenging as the family you have escaped from still leaves its destructive mark. I don't find groups of any kind easy to cope with. Somewhere in my consciousness I fear I am going to be scapegoated again. So, I tend to be quite solitary.

Your FOO is simply comfortable with the idea and habit of trying to find fault with you so they will look for any opening or opportunity to do so. It keeps you in a cubby hole that is comfortable for them but one in which you have clearly outgrown.

I can relate with your story. I am the middle child of three children (i have an older sister and a younger half brother). My father killed himself when I was only five and my mom remarried,My step father always was stricter/meaner to me-and he favored his own son and my sister. I was always labeled as the trouble maker, lazy, and not living up to my potential. Although my siblings were praised for their accomplishments-I was always critized. I did associate with bad people growing up=and lived up to my parents low expectation. I have made several mistakes in my life-and my parents/siblings always critize me for them and focus on my past mistakes instead of my current accomplishments. I have gotten my life together-and am a good dad/responsible person-but I hate getting together with family bc it feels like the inquisition. MY parents and sister always think i am not treating my wife well, or i should be doing this for living instead of what I am doing, or I should raise my kids this way-it is so annoying because they only treat me as if I am this horrible mess up and need help-and not each other. I wish at this point they would realize I am not a mess up and have matured/worked out my issues. Because they blame me for almost all family problems or drama I am very distant and withdrawn from them. The only positive i got out of being the scapgoat is how to parent better-i do not label my children and try to treat them all fairly n with love.

I can seriously relate. And I did the same thing as far as finding so-called friends who behaved in a similar manner as the family. It is frightening to think of how we can all perpetuate the role we have been in within the family of origin. The better people who were there to accept my friendship, who extended their friendship to me felt foreign and I felt like I wasn't really worthy on the basis of the idea that if they knew how I was being mistreated, how I was ALLOWING others to mistreat me, they would not want anything to do with me. When a parent mistreats the child and the child feels it all deep inside and hopes and prays that the parents behavior will change, or possibly wants to kill the parent at times in order to put and end to the inescapable mental and emotional abuse, well, they are caught between a rock and a hard place. And then they replicate the relationship with their peers and multiply their problems. My older sisters held resentments against me since before I could talk. My father never really cared for me, either and he let me know it. My mother took pleasure in treating me cruelly at times. My youngest sister blames me for her problems in life in spite of the fact that whenever I tried to point out that she was heading down the wrong path she took it as an effront and would act as if I declared war on her and then she'd go about trying to trash my sense of self esteem. When things would go badly for her, as predicted, she'd then unleash her anger at me and blame me for her own poor judgement. Basically, she wanted to do what she wanted to do and heaven forbid anyone try to stop her and of course she wanted someone else to blame for her behavior when the piper called for his pay in the end. I guess you could say that their is simply no respect for the person who is in the scapegoating role. We wonder what is wrong with them and wonder why they don't change. But they know what they are doing. They are like a pack of wild dogs that you cannot turn your back on. They learned to operate this way in society, through social conditioning. For whatever reason we chose not to pick up these traits, probably because they are immoral and reprehensible. They are also commonly found in all groups, as are scapegoats. It is good to think carefully over our pasts to see if there were times in which we behaved in a similar fashion in order to be better self aware and better people in the future.

Thanks for sharing your story. Your strength and honesty is like a weapon to a dysfunctional family and the disease. I hope you find peace.

Thank you for your comment on my story. This is the first time I've ever tried to write about my experiences of being scapegoated by my family. It feels strange to do so and also to have comments of people who really understand. I'm very grateful for that because I've found it a bad idea to tell friends about it when they have had no experience of it themselves. I really identify with your statement that you find your story so complex and difficult to write. It IS complex, scapegoating. I am always told, if I confront them, that I am too angry or they just go cold on me and refuse to listen. There just seems to be no way I can be heard and accepted. Maybe I will have the confidence to write here sometime about some of the horrible things that have happened to me at the hands of my family. But, at least people like us have understood what's happening and we can now feel confident that we ARE NOT TO BLAME. You are obviously wisely protecting yourself by not seeing your family -- at least hardly at all. Are your sisters jealous of you? I think my sisters have always been jealous of me.