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Family Scapegoating Abuse (FSA) Recovery Worksheet

Questions for you to explore within yourself or in this group regarding the effects of Family Scapegoating Abuse (FSA): – Copyrighted Material | Rebecca C. Mandeville | All Rights Reserved

Introduction: Family Scapegoating Abuse (FSA) is a form of systemic psycho-emotional abuse where one or more family members systematically target, blame, shame, and mistreat the child (or adult child) in the ‘family scapegoat’ role. This worksheet will help you understand FSA and its impact on targeted individuals.


  1. Read each statement carefully.
  2. Reflect on whether the statement resonates with your experiences of FSA.
  3. Take time to reflect on each question – Skip the ones that feel overly triggering or emotionally activating for now.
  4. Discuss your responses with a trusted friend, therapist, or here in this support group, if you like.

Statement 1: Identification of the Scapegoat

“I often feel like I’m the target if rejecting, shaming, and blaming behaviors in my family, no matter what I do.”

  • Do you feel like you’re constantly criticized, shamed, rejected or blamed by your family members?
  • Are you often singled out for things that go wrong within the family?

Statement 2: Emotional and Psychological Abuse

“I frequently experience feelings of shame, guilt, and worthlessness because of my family.”

  • Do you often feel ashamed of who you are or your actions because of your family’s treatment?
  • Have you experienced emotional manipulation or gaslighting (reality distortion) from your family members?
  • Do you feel like you’re never good enough in the eyes of your family?

Statement 3: Isolation and Alienation

“I feel disconnected from my family and struggle to establish healthy relationships with them.”

  • Do you feel like you don’t belong in your family or that you’re not accepted for who you are?
  • Have you been excluded or ostracized by your family members?
  • Do you find it challenging to trust others or form close relationships because of your experiences within your family?

Statement 4: Impact on Self-Esteem and Mental Health

“My experiences with my family have deeply impacted my self-esteem and mental well-being.”

  • Have you struggled with low self-esteem, depression, anxiety, or other mental health issues as a result of your family’s treatment?
  • Do you find it difficult to assert yourself or set boundaries because of your experiences with FSA?
  • Have you sought professional help or support to cope with the effects of FSA?

Statement 5: Breaking the Cycle

“I want to break free from the cycle of abuse and build a healthier, happier life for myself.”

  • Are you committed to seeking help and support to overcome the effects of FSA?
  • Are you willing to set boundaries with your family members to protect your well-being (this may include light contact, ‘gray rock’, or ending contact to protect your psycho-emotional health)?
  • Do you believe that healing and recovery are possible, even after experiencing FSA?
  • How can you start to redefine your identity and reclaim your authentic self, separate from the scapegoat role?

Family Scapegoating Abuse can have profound and long-lasting effects on individuals, but it’s possible to break free from the cycle of abuse and build a healthier, happier life. Remember, you’re not alone, and there is support available to help you heal and thrive, including right here in our Community of FSA adult survivors. Be sure to check out my FSA Adult Survivor Resource page to access additional support in your healing and recovery journey.

Copyright 2024 | Rebecca C. Mandeville | All Rights Reserved

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