Rejected, Shamed, and Blamed: The Book

Rejected, Shamed, and Blamed: The Book

You may not be able to stop people in your family from scapegoating you, but you can stop identifying with the ‘scapegoat story’ and the dysfunctional and damaging family narrative.

To learn more about family scapegoating abuse (FSA), you may purchase my introductory book, Rejected, Shamed, and Blamed, via the links below. Thank you to all my readers who helped make this a best-seller on Amazon since its release in 2020. I no longer advertise or promote this book so if you find value in it and know someone who might need to read it, please pass it on.

Rebecca C. Mandeville, MFT

Amazon Best-Seller: Free Preview

My introductory psycho-educational guide, Rejected, Shamed, and Blamed: Help and Hope for Adults in the Family Scapegoat Role, is informed by my research on what I named family scapegoating abuse (FSA) while serving as Core Faculty at the Institute of Transpersonal Psychology, and by over 20 years experience working with scapegoated adult survivors in clinical and private practice settings.

This is an excellent book for patients or practitioners. The author shares her extensive experience working with and studying toxic families and how to recover from the experience. This book is a must have for anyone treating those from dysfunctional families or family members themselves.

– Melissa Petty, LMSW

Scroll down to see Book Description

Available on Amazon in both Kindle and Paperback formats. You can also purchase it at these online Book Retailers.

PLEASE NOTE: This website is for my FSA Recovery Coaching services. If you reside in the state of California and are interested in my licensed Psychotherapy services, visit this website.


I finally know the core of my problem – the relation between scapegoating and trauma is key, too.

– Amazon Reviewer


Family scapegoating is an insidious form of “invisible” abuse that is difficult to recognize. It is therefore critical that adult survivors understand what type of abuse they are trying to recover from. In Rejected, Shamed, and Blamed, Psychotherapist and Family Systems expert Rebecca C. Mandeville uses her research findings on what she named family scapegoating abuse (FSA) to help survivors recognize and release the damaging ‘scapegoat’ narrative. This 2nd revision includes additional recovery suggestions and resources, as well as updated links (Kindle version).

In these pages you’ll discover:

  • The FSA Self-Assessment Test
  • How to recognize and identify family scapegoating abuse (FSA) signs and symptoms
  • Why scapegoated individuals have difficulty recognizing they are being abused
  • How complex trauma (C-PTSD)betrayal trauma, and toxic shame impede FSA recovery
  • How intergenerational trauma and false narratives fuel family scapegoating dynamics
  • Why the family ‘Empath’ can end up scapegoated
  • Strategies to reduce fawning behaviors and realign with your ‘true self’
  • Recommended resources and therapy modalities for FSA recovery

From the Author: “Scapegoating in any social system is a dehumanizing process of ‘othering’. When you are the target of scapegoating in your family-of-origin, the consequences to your mental and emotional health can be severe, including the development of complex trauma (C-PTSD) symptoms. This introductory guide’s purpose is to help the reader determine if they are in the ‘family scapegoat’ role; also, to better understand family scapegoating dynamics and the devastating consequences of being ‘rejected, shamed, and blamed’ by the people who were supposed to love and care for them the most.”

Rebecca C. Mandeville is a licensed Marriage, Family Therapist and recognized Family Systems expert. She has over 20 years experience in treating adult survivors of dysfunctional family abuse in both clinical and private practice settings.. She coined the term family scapegoating abuse (FSA) while researching family scapegoating’s impact on the targeted child / adult child while Core Faculty at the Institute of Transpersonal Psychology. She is also a pioneer in identifying the overlapping symptoms of family scapegoating abuse (FSA), complex trauma (C-PTSD), betrayal trauma, and the devastating impact and effects of multigenerational trauma on adult survivors of dysfunctional, narcissistic, or abusive family systems.

Preview Rejected, Shamed, and Blamed on Amazon

Those who like to read books written by licensed Mental Health professionals that address healing from the effects of Dysfunctional or Toxic Families; Narcissistic Abuse; Narcissistic Families; Gaslighting; Toxic Relationships and Going ‘No Contact’; Complex Trauma (C-PTSD); Dysfunctional Family Dynamics; Multigenerational Trauma; Empaths; (the) Highly Sensitive Person (HSP); Child Abuse; Bullying; and Adult Survivors of Child Abuse and Toxic Family Abuse may especially appreciate this book.

©2020 Rebecca C. Mandeville All Rights Reserved

Rejected, Shamed, and Blamed was a 2021 Eric Hoffer Book Awards Finalist.

Editorial Reviews

This much needed work by Rebecca C. Mandeville provides a comprehensive introduction to the subject of family scapegoating and serves as a starting point for survivor awareness and further research for professionals if they want to begin filling in the gaps for this misunderstood and under-served community. 

It serves an important niche within Family Systems literature, as it was written for those who were assigned the role of ‘family scapegoat’ within their dysfunctional family system.  It adeptly addresses with specificity the abuses and emotional injuries scapegoated adults experience, which are distinct, and often more damaging than those associated with other dysfunctional family roles.

– Lisa Marie Campagnoli, Certified Trauma Recovery Coach, RYT-200

A much-needed adjunct to the Family Systems model. Suitable for clinicans, clients, and lay-persons.

– Shellie Krick, MSW

This is an excellent book for patients or practitioners. The author shares her extensive experience working with and studying toxic families and how to recover from the experience. This book is a must have for anyone treating those from dysfunctional families or family members themselves.

– Melissa Petty, LMSW

As a Clinical Social Worker, I Enthusiastically Recommend This Book!

I’m a clinical social worker with 21 years of experience. This is a FANTASTIC and potentially life-changing read!

Anyone who works in my field knows that the scapegoat, or “black sheep” of the family, is ALWAYS the one most likely to seek therapy.

In part, that’s because it’s *inherently* depressing to endure shame, blame, abuse, & gaslighting by your own family. Who *wouldn’t* suffer under that? Scapegoats often suffer from anxiety, depression, and complex PTSD (and such diagnoses are used against them by the family, even though the family dynamic caused these problems to emerge in the first place!)

But, another reason scapegoats are over-represented in mental health treatment, is because the scapegoat is typically the family member with the most empathy, awareness, & capacity for change— in other words, the one most able to benefit from therapy.

Rebecca’s writing is clear & compassionate. She offers so much hope, and she’s also extremely honest about “ripping off the band-aid” regarding family mythologies that keep people stuck.

Examples of these mythologies include:

“If I people-please and keep quiet, I’ll finally earn their love & respect”

“It’s my fault I’m being treated this way; they must be right about me”

“If I refuse to speak to them, they’ll learn their lesson”

“One day they’ll realize how wrong and unfair they are!”

One of the hardest realities to face as a scapegoat, is that you can NEVER change their minds about you. No matter what you do or how “good” you are.

You cannot recover if you’re still clinging to the idea that the family system will change enough to accept the real you, if only you are persuasive enough.

Nope nope nope. You simply don’t have that kind of control.

The family system is deeply and unconsciously entrenched in these dynamics, which typically stem from generations of unresolved trauma (with a chosen scapegoat in every generation). Stopping or limiting contact is usually your only option.

You can see how entrenched the scapegoating dynamic really is, because even when you finally stand up for yourself, that is twisted & used against you. Even when you improve your life, your efforts are discredited. Even when you go no-contact, that becomes part of the family narrative about your ingratitude & selfishness.

This is why books like Rebecca’s are so needed. She offers a roadmap toward reclaiming your joyful, authentic self even after decades of insidious abuse; silencing your self-critic; and having healthy boundaries and a renewed zest for life— a roadmap that does NOT involve anyone around you changing in any way, because that isn’t a realistic assumption to make.

– Amazon Customer Review


My book on what I named Family Scapegoating Abuse (FSA) is available in both Kindle and Paperback formats on Amazon. You can also purchase it at these online Book Retailers.

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