Wednesday, January 14, 2015
The church bullies I've met share a common trait. They spent a lot of time pointing out the foibles of others. But, apparently, they don't have enough insight into their own wretchedness, which we all suffer from, to curb their own deviant behavior.
I've mentioned this in earlier posts, both here and on my Female Bullies blog, but it's worth repeating. Church bullies are often what is known as "covert narcissists." They are often difficult to spot, because they appear so holy, and unassuming.
From what I've seen, and from what's been reported elsewhere, these "meek and mild" narcissists are drawn to religious settings. There, they find fertile ground to maneuver themselves into positions of authority. This can be either a formal office they hold within the parish, or it can simply mean seizing control of all social activities.
Spotting covert narcissists, before getting too involved with them, can save you a lot of time and trouble down the road. If you are targeted by one, he or she will work relentlessly to drive you from your parish. However, they don't give away too many clues, and they have taught themselves to blend in so well that they can fool even the experts.
However, one sign, if you see it in a church person, is over-the-top self righteousness. Pay close attention to this one.
Pixabay image top by Nemo
Thursday, January 8, 2015
Earlier this week, on my Female Bullies blog, I talked about the role of "group think" in a mobbing situation.
Group think can also happen in churches. This is a psychological phenomenon in which the dynamics of a particular group are not conducive to the individual critical thought process. Instead, people will march in lock-step with a highly charismatic leader, or a team of leaders. All discussions are then engineered so that the group will arrive at a predetermined conclusion, decided upon in advance by the people running the show.
It may appear as if there's a real debate going on. But this may be staged, just to make it appear as if it's a more democratic process. Narcissists and sociopaths, found in all walks of life, even at church, are extremely clever and very good at manipulating people and situations.
So, it's this "group think" dynamic that can result in a social mobbing, in a parish, in the church choir, on a committee or in a religious education program.
Narcissists love power and they love to run things. They will seize any opportunity to push people around. Churches offer them the perfect venue, especially if the pastor is outnumbered by a narcissist's flying monkeys.
Although group think is not always a bad thing, because sometimes groups and committees need to agree, in order to move forward, it can also be a highly destructive force when a church bully is running the show.
Pixabay image top by geralt