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Worth Nothing: Bullying, Scapegoating & The Attrition of Self-Esteem

An online webinar 

Speaker: Christiane Sanderson

Date: 29 September 2022, Thursday
Location: Online streaming only (
all our webinar tickets now include complimentary access to a video recorded version for 1 year)
Times: 6:00pm to 9:00pm, London, UK time
CPD hours: 3

Individual ticket price per delegate for online streaming + video recording of the event: £65

Webinar attendance links can now be downloaded directly from your ticket.

For more information on how to access webinar joining links, handouts and video recordings please click here

Bullying, a complex form of interpersonal aggression is often characterised by hostile intent and relational onslaught and is capable of causing physical, mental, emotional and sexual harm leading to a range of negative outcomes for our clients. And yet, is not simply dyadic, it occurs instead in a social and relational context. Victims of bullying, who have been shown to be at greater risk for a range of clinical manifestations spanning from depression to suicidal ideation often don’t just suffer from the assault on their own self-esteem but also carry projections from their perpetrators. These may stem from callous emotional traits, psychopathic tendencies, endorsement of masculine traits and susceptibility to peer pressure.

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Full Course Information

At the same time, bullying is highly correlated with scapegoating – the practice where a person or group gets singled out for unmerited blame and consequent negative treatment. This phenomenon is characterised by relational contexts whereby feelings of aggression, hostility and frustration are projected or displaced onto others in both interpersonal and societal settings. The combined effects of bullying and scapegoating can be especially attritive on our clients’ self-esteem.

This engaging, intellectually stimulating and therapeutically oriented webinar by Christiane Sanderson draws on a trauma informed practice model and relational perspectives – to explore:

  • The insidious nature and characteristics of bullying and scapegoating and the impact of repeated acts of relational aggression on an individual’s sense of self, relationships, mental and physical well being
  • The characteristics of bullies and how they shame, blame and project unwanted thoughts and feelings onto the victim, who is then bullied or scapegoated for the perpetrators’ own problems. This allows the perpetrators to disavow any sense of responsibility or accountability
  • The corrosive and pernicious nature of bullying and scapegoating and its long-term effects on individuals or marginalised groups; specifically with a view to understanding how these hidden scars have shaped the sense of self for our client and generated relational fears
  • How, as psychotherapists and counsellors, we can respond to bullying and scapegoating ourselves, how we can set boundaries and how we can protect ourselves from future attacks on the self

The focus of the webinar will be on identifying how clients can process their experience of bullying and scapegoating, in order to reduce shame and self-blame and restore a healthy sense of self.

Specifically, we consider:

  • The range of covert and overt bullying and scapegoating behaviours
  • How to distinguish between teasing and banter and how these can tip into bullying
  • Identifying the role of projection and displacement in bullying and scapegoating
  • Understanding the role and impact of deflected shame and projected blame
  • Social Media, Cyber-bullying and their causative role in the creation of the Dark Triad of Personality
  • Examining the characteristics of Perpetrators, Victims and Indifferent Bystanders
  • Understanding the linkages between bullying and low self-esteem, eating disorders, body dysmorphia, loneliness, lack of belongingness and risk of suicide
  • Therapeutic strategies for reapportioning projected shame and blame and restoring relational worth
  • Appropriate responses to bullying, setting healthy boundaries and protecting the self from further bullying and scapegoating

About the speaker

Christiane Sanderson BSc, MSc. is a senior lecturer in Psychology at the University of Roehampton, of London with 26 years of experience working with survivors of childhood sexual abuse and sexual violence. She has delivered consultancy, continuous professional development and professional training for parents, teachers, social workers, nurses, therapists, counsellors, solicitors, the NSPCC, the Catholic Safeguarding Advisory Committee, the Methodist Church, the Metropolitan Police Service, SOLACE, the Refugee Council, Birmingham City Council Youth Offending Team, and HMP Bronzefield.

She is the author of Counselling Skills for Working with Shame, Counselling Skills for Working with Trauma: Healing from Child Sexual Abuse, Sexual Violence and Domestic Abuse, Counselling Adult Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse, 3rd edition, Counselling Survivors of Domestic Abuse, The Seduction of Children: Empowering Parents and Teachers to Protect Children from Child Sexual Abuse, and Introduction to Counselling Survivors of Interpersonal Trauma, all published by Jessica Kingsley Publishers. She has also written The Warrior Within: A One in Four Handbook to Aid Recovery from Sexual Violence; The Spirit Within: A One in Four Handbook to Aid Recovery from Religious Sexual Abuse Across All Faiths and Responding to Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse: A pocket guide for professionals, partners, families and friends for the charity One in Four for whom she is a trustee.

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