Encounters with a Psychopathic Boss

Although I had encountered a few psychopaths in my life, it was not until I worked for one that I truly began to understand my earlier encounters with other psychopaths.  While I diligently worked to under her command, she plotted to destroy my career for fun and because she was threatened by my experience, education and integrity.  The most dastardly part of her covert smear campaign against me was to spread the rumor to every manager in the facility that I was a snob and that I thought my work was beneath me.  She shared my career path development worksheet with the other managers as evidence of her false assertion (Never mind that doing so was a violation of privacy laws). Although this was far from the truth, it was the perfect psychological trigger for the Branch Manager and all of the yes men and women he had collected and appointed to run the departments under him.  Because he worked his way through the ranks with only a High School education, he only supported an promoted others that also had little education and created an anti-education domain within the agency where those who entered the ranks at the bottom with advanced degrees were put on an “educated blacklist” and never promoted and only given work to do when they needed something for which to take credit.  The first time I met the Branch Manager I asked him why he was going around telling people that I thought my work was beneath me.  Since we had never met, I was curious as to how he would know anything about me, much less my deepest most inner feelings.  His response, “It has come to our attention that you aspire to supervisory lever work.”  Apparently I am not allowed to have aspirations.

Reviews by my psychopathic boss were and exercise in surviving psychological torture. She would deftly steer any conversation during the part of the reviews that we were supposed to be talking about my career path to a treatise about all of her contributions to the agency. When I would gently attempt to steer the conversation back to my career development, she would begin her assault of all the many tiny things I had done wrong, most of which were completely made up and all of which were extraordinarily petty and meaningless. When I asked of the priorities in my work I was told to figure it out myself but if I guessed wrong that was entirely my fault. Any attempt I made toward reality and defending my humanity were met with a cold and dark shark stare. Along with the stare, her lip would begin to tremble as if she was doing everything in her power not to explode with rage and kill me on the spot. The most utterly gaslighting part of the experience was that, although my reviews would have me “on target” and meeting expectations, absolutely every comment in the reviews were negative. Then she would insist that my reviews were both meaningless and efforts to assist in my development.

Crazy making does not even begin to describe the experience. The personality of my psychopathic boss was so traumatizing and communication with her was so difficult and draining, that I began doing research to try to find out how to better communicate with her.  My communication with others up to that point and at the age of 40, had always been successful and easy for me.  What I found was that the difficulty communicating with her was all her manipulation and that my every attempt to improve communication with her was just an indication to her of my weakness.  Before I was moved from under her “supervision,” the stress I suffered under her psychological torture caused a great deal of physical symptoms.  I cried all the time.  I was in constant physical pain and had a heightened fight or flight response. At the worst part of it, I could not even properly swallow my food and lost a lot of weight.

One of her tactics to get me not to trust my peers was to bring me into her office on a regular basis and tell me there had been an “anonymous complaint” made about me.  These “complaints” became increasingly bizarre and frequent.  They ranged from complaints about my clothing to someone saying I said something I never said.  At first, my response was not to trust my peers but then I realized that she was making them all up.  Because we were not intimately involved, she was never able to successfully remove me from my support network.  Nevertheless, the damage she caused was significant.

In one of her most elaborate rouses, I was brought into a conference room for a meeting and there were managers from the facility as well as HQ and security personnel.  Mind you, there was nobody to represent me except me.  I was told that I needed to keep my mouth shut about my complaints and the experiences I was having or I would be investigated for saying that I “wanted to see my boss dead.”  Of course, I never said any such thing and I wondered if it was common practice to warn an employee that they would be investigated if they didn’t shut up.  Their hubris was so great that they even backed it up in a follow up e-mail which CCd the Branch Chief.  Later in an affidavit, he denied any knowledge of the meeting yet my boss stated in her affidavit that he was there and the CCd e-mail was further proof.

Imagine the actual work folks could be doing if not for the games.  I am thankful every day that my constant begging to be removed from under her finally paid off and saved me from further pain and destruction.  But I had to go to the top.  I went through the entire chain of command being blamed for being a victim, until I got to the top.  I received no response but was moved within 3 days of my communication. I was quite detailed in my descriptions of my soul destroying experiences under my psychopathic boss.

About Kira

Tall Hot Chick, intercultural clown, insurgent, poet, singer, water protector, land defender, grower of food and flowers.
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4 Responses to Encounters with a Psychopathic Boss

  1. i don’t understand why companies tolerate psychopaths. It lowers productivity which does not benefit the company.

    • kyoung4 says:

      That’s because you are thinking logically. When a corporate or agency psychopath gets in, they know how to ingratiate themselves to the right people and they know how to manipulate those people, in essence, setting up a situation that to question the insanity of the psychopath is to question the judgement of the ones in charge.

  2. Belinda Kellber says:

    Unfortunately a lot of companies seem to like psychopaths. I guess as long as the work is getting done they see no reason for their staff to enjoy their jobs. I have experienced being the target of workplace psychos on several occasions; I think they sense that I can see right through them along with my utter disgust at their toadying tactics with their superiors. They know that they will never pull the wool over my eyes and they hate that because they know they cannot manipulate me. The only thing to do in situations like this is to either get moved to a position in which the psycho has no input or look for another job. You are right about HR, they are often behave like nazis!

  3. DCM says:

    My boss is the CEO and I have currently been singled out by him over the past few months, to the point where others are noticing and speaking to me about it .. but no-one has the guts to say anything to him. I think they are just glad it is not happening to them!

    He was really nice to me when I first started, I was apparently *his favorite* in the office .. but after several months of fending off his advances (he was always finding excuses to lean over me while showing me something on the computer etc) .. he finally got the message that I wasn’t interested .. and then things went sour! It happened almost overnight .. he went from picking my brain about my relationship status and trying to figure me out … to criticizing EVERYTHING and constantly badgering me about menial shite. He will tell me to do something for the pure hell of telling me .. I will complete the task and hand him the papers and he doesn’t even remember asking me … he will look blankly at me .. it’s crazy making at it’s highest!

    One member of staff said ‘he doesn’t like strong women’ .. apparently, he doesn’t like intelligent or good looking women either .. I’ve been told that he never completed his bachelors degree but tells everyone he has a BA. He has been given a CBE for his contribution to charity work in the community and has a seat on the council as well as being an active member of the local government. He is so far up his own backside, wears all the best suits, drives the best cars … the man is a total fraud! He portrays himself as this kind of hero when the truth is he is an envious and spiteful idiot!

    Being around him is draining because you are always walking on eggshells, trying to judge his moods. I am quite rebellious by nature (when challenged) and so I have started to be more confrontational when cross examined … he doesn’t like confrontation and has taken to bad mouthing me to managers and has labelled me a *gobshite* because I’ve dared to defend myself against his slights.

    He has serious issues, and shows all the signs of a twisted psychopath, I’ve heard that he always has to have a scapegoat, someone to bully and blame in front of his senior managers, to display his authority. And I hear it is always *women* that he picks on … what a complete wanker!

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