Since it happened yesterday I have struggled with whether or not to bring it up here on my blog. I wasn't sure I wanted to involve people who would never be aware of these events without me mentioning it here. I've decided to do it. I'll explain why as we go along.
I have been the object of a smear campaign. I was unsuspecting therefore it was quite a shock. This seems like a good time to bring up the concept of the "smear campaign" that is often used by narcissists. Since this blog is about narcissists and their tactics, this is a good time to bring up this particular one.
I was recently invited to join a Yahoo Group by the owner of that group. I was invited and joined on Aug. 28, 2007. The shit hit the fan yesterday, nine days after joining. This is a support group for people who are "divorcing" their parents or in the process of it. The owner asked me to join her group so I could post there. I walked into a trap, apparently.
She was well aware of my blog. Looking in the archives minutes before I unsubbed last night I saw that she had at least three times, in the previous month to my joining, quoted entire blog posts from Narcissists Suck with attribution. Which is fine. My point is, the purpose for her doing so was obviously to be helpful and instructive to her group members. She was recommending my site by quoting it and including the link. No indication until yesterday that she was thinking I was an evil "spy" that she must warn her members against.
Yes, in an email that obviously had been sent to one of her group members privately she titled it "Beware of Anna V" and proceeded to libelously accuse me of stealing ideas from her members in the group claiming I had gotten into her group in disguise so I could steal content. The accusations were made without one shred of proof. Her accusations are rather fuzzy. The more specific accusation claims I had stolen the idea from one of her members to analyze my sister's letter. This is so ludicrous as to be almost laughable. I guess I could never have come up with that idea all by my little self. Not to mention that my analysis of my sister's letter was composed over TWO years ago! (A fact I can prove.) That it only ended up in my blog some weeks back doesn't mean I just came up with it. It was an exercise I did immediately after my cutting off with my sister. Which is a fact I shared when I posted it on my blog. Of all the things to accuse me of stealing she goes right for the thing I can prove absolutely to have come up with on my own.
This group owner's private email ended up in the group messages because the person she was trying to poison responded to it with the group's email address. So the owner decides to switch me from receiving the "digest" version of the group's posts to "web only". That tells me she wasn't eager for me to see her libelous comments.
This group owner has greatly flattered herself to believe that her group was so compellingly interesting to me that I had to join incognito to "steal" ideas from her group. She wasn't even on my radar. I only joined because she specifically asked me to, and I was willing to give it a try to see if I could add anything pertinent or of interest for her group as she was specifically asking me to do. I was poorly rewarded for my decision.
After I found the libelous message yesterday late morning, I fired off a response to the group. It never was allowed into the group by the owner. She obviously put me on moderation after switching me to "web only". I had no recourse to try to clear my name to the very people who were being influenced by her smear campaign against me. I reserve the right to try to defend myself where I can. Here, on my blog. Some of her members were still visiting my blog after her email landed into the group messages. Maybe someone there is interested in my side of the story.
Because she was falsely accusing me of stealing intellectual property she has in reality laid claim to stealing my intellectual property. She is staking her "right" to decide what I've stolen and claim it as her own or belonging to her group. All without a speck of proof. Meanwhile, I have proof of my ownership of what she claims I took. Absolute proof that would stand up in court. The attempted thief in this picture is group owner herself.
Since this happened to me yesterday, I have now found out from other ACONs she has abused others in similar ways. The common theme that has developed by people who are now speaking up is that she is somewhat paranoid and very authoritarian. Beware of:
"Adultchildren_divorcing_their_parents" at Yahoo Groups.
Had I known what she had already done to other ACONS in the other group I was already a member of I would never have been lured to join up with this owner's newer group. Knowing that if her identity had been revealed to me I would have been saved this unpleasant experience, I am sharing the identity of this owner's group with you here. Just be aware of what you've read here should you decide this is a place you want to hang out or are already a member of it. Think of this like a restaurant review. I went. I now have my own experience and impression which I am free to describe. The atmosphere and food sucks. Two thumbs down.
Back to what Kathy Krajo has so well described about the smear campaign:
Note that in doing this, the narcissist isn't attacking your faults and shortcomings: she is attacking your virtues and accomplishments. Consequently, when she is conducting a campaign of character assassination against someone, the arrows she shoots never hit one of that person's real flaws.
I maintain this applies to my situation. I think there is some ample evidence that I can think for myself and can write what I'm thinking with at least some decent clarity and quality. This group owner has tried assassinate my virtues and not my flaws. I believe she has revealed something about herself. I am tempted to believe she has done what she accuses me of having done. I am pointing the finger straight back at the originator of the smear. I will assume there is a certain amount of projection motivating the smear campaign.
Because this group owner gave me no recourse to clear my name in her group, I am doing it here where many more people will learn of her treachery than just the few members of her closed little world where she controls all the knobs, bells and whistles.
Smear campaigns are a form of stealing. When someone does this to you they steal a part of you. Your good name, virtues and strengths. Do not sit still for it. It is never deserved. Kathy Krajco points out that the smear campaign is never provoked. That certainly applies in this case. There is no bad history between this person and me. I have never contradicted her, talked negatively about her, nothing. I get kicked in the teeth. The perversity of her attack is huge and therefore a giant red flag.
By the way, I have submitted a formal complaint to Yahoo!Groups and have requested that the libelous messages be deleted. If she deletes them now she can pretend this whole thing never happened. She is being invited to remove only the proof of her own treachery. Not a bad deal for her.
Please read the full article at Kathy's site on Projection (and smear campaigns). It is excellent...as is all her content.
9/21/07: Another innocent person has been blind-sided by the owner of "Adultchildren_divorcing_their_parents" Yahoo! Group. The casualties mount. Please beware. This group owner writes very poorly in English. She has an American moderator who is her well-spoken pit-bull who threatens legal action to anyone who dares to describe this owner's mistreatment of them. You must subscribe to this group with extreme caution. It can only be a support group to you if you are willing to agree to all the paranoid delusions of its owner. This is not an exaggeration. You've been warned.