“Schadenfreude” – A Bully’s Satisfaction. By ABC.

Schadenfreude” – A Bully’s Satisfaction.


Have you ever noticed a little smile sweep across your bully’s face just at the moment when you couldn’t feel more infuriated?  Well if you have, you are right.  “Real” Bullies, and by that, I mean bullies with a level of psychopathy, also referred to as sociopathy…

“gain satisfaction through

antisocial behavior”, characterized by an abnormal lack of empathy combined with strongly amoral conduct but masked by an ability to appear outwardly normal” –
-quoted from Wikipedia at this link:    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Psychopathy#Perceptual.2Femotional_recognition_deficits

Although this resource uses the word “satisfaction” to describe

what  “a psychopath gains through their antisocial behavior”, it is an entirely different kind of  “satisfaction” than both defined and  experienced by most of us.  “A bully’s satisfaction” is a perverse form of satisfaction,  being malicious in nature, rather than joyful or positive, as defined in English dictionaries.

There is actually no English word which links personal “satisfaction” to another person’s misfortune or harm.  Such a word doesn’t exist, because most people, are incapable of thinking in those terms, while denying the existence of the  few, who do.  Some languages acknowledge those few, having words for them, like the German word;


satisfaction or pleasure felt at someone else’s misfortune.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2011.


— n
delight in another’s misfortune

[German: from Schaden  harm + Freude  joy]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009


“What a fearful thing is it that any language should have a word expressive of the pleasure which men feel at the calamities of others; for the existence of the word bears testimony to the existence of the thing. And yet in more than one such a word is found. … In the Greek epikhairekakia,  in the German, ‘Schadenfreude.’ ”

As quoted by Richard C. Trench, “On the Study of Words,” 1852

So there it is!  “Such a thing exists”, two languages having words, thereby “bearing testimony to the existence of the thing”, namely, “a bully’s satisfaction”, words of my own, for lack of a more fitting,

German policemen tormenting a Jew in Rzeszów, ...

Image via Wikipedia

existing, English word.

“Schadenfreude” – “A bully’s satisfaction” – Remember the meaning well, if not the word(s), because the meaning does exists, even where a word for it does not, in the memory of many who have witnessed it.  Only some cultures, witnessing it enough,  to name it.

I wonder if the Germans came up with this word, before or after the Holocaust?

Workplace Bullying – More About Recovery, by ABC

Well Wishes From Reader

ABC, please post a reply and tell us, your followers, how you are doing, or if there is ANYTHING we can do to help you. I don’t even mind calling you. Honestly, your blog has saved countless numbers from more serious consequences from these psychopathic bullies. The serial kind is the MOST dangerous. We care about you…. please post a reply.

ABC Replies,

-Blind-sided by bullying professionals while seeking help with post-bullying job loss recovery-

Dear Readers,

Thanks to all my readers for all the encouraging words after my posting that I finally lost my job at the hands of my workplace serial bully boss.  I want everyone to know that I am feeling better and better each day, by the passage of time and by the support from all of you, my readers, my spouse and the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

It is also a comfort to know that the anti-workplace bullying and mobbing movement, is gaining momentum in the United States due the tireless efforts of dozens of anti-bullying activists, blogs and support groups, growing in numbers every day, the understanding needed, that will one day make it possible, for all working Americans;  To Recognize it, Name it, and End Workplace Bullying and Mobbing Together!

My journey through this experience has put me in a  position to learn more than I ever wanted to know, about the devastating effects of  “workplace bullies” and the “mobbing” behaviors caused by their influence and manipulation of others. This continues to play itself out, presenting a much bigger picture, in ways I never expected, as I go about the business of recovery.

Now, safely separated from the abuses of my workplace serial bully boss, I have been blind-sided by the final brutal tactics of my employer, the company itself, as represented by the Human Resource Department, in the course of the actual legal separation, from my 30 year employment with them.

As is the case with most any type of abusive relationship, my employer has taken steps to insure my silence, having successfully cornered me into a position commonly referred to as “between a rock and a hard place”, leaving little choice, but to sign their papers of “agreement”. My signature, a representation of being silenced by poverty and fear, the document being specifically inclusive of the agreement itself, and everything that preceded it. The signature representing the company itself, a representation of the management’s  knowledge, that even their own written words of  “agreement”  if published, would not be perceived as agreeable by others.  The seal of their abuse,  the requirement of my silence, and made evident by a truth I think most everyone can agree upon, that being;  Gag clauses exist for only two reasons, 1) National security.  2) To hide the truth!

I was then doubly blind-sided by bullying behaviors from 3 different psychiatric professionals I sought help from.  Additionally, being unwittingly brushed off by an employment attorney, followed by denials of my claims for continuation of first short-term, then long-term disability insurance coverage, provided by my employer.

This was all very perplexing to me.  Once again, I found myself  doubting my own perceptions, which lengthened my silence.  Having come to realize, I needed a deeper, more global understanding of the bullying phenomenon, now experienced outside the workplace, as well as needing certainty about my own perceptions, through meditation.

Unprepared to face bullying, called “psychopathy”, outside the workplace arena, I was initially blinded to that possibility as the reason that the 3 different psychiatrists, discarded my stated emotional injuries due to workplace bullying.  Instead, each concluded that I am “seriously mentally ill”, each very confident, about the widely varied diagnosis, they each came up with.  Each also, denied having previous knowledge of the workplace bullying and mobbing phenomenon, a concept which none of them seemed willing to look into, despite my insistence that this was central to my issue.

Their responses similarly hostile in their delivery, left me freshly stunned, the second, and then the third time, as if experienced for the first time. Finally, I came to realize, the similarity of their tactics, were more than just coincidence!

Finding through my research that this is a common problem among recovering targets, it didn’t take long for me to realize, that I missed the hallmark of bullies where ever they may hide. That being the similarities of their tactics, none of which makes sense to the sane.  Why would a psychiatrist, take a hostile stance while telling a seriously mentally ill patient their diagnosis, rather than coax them into the treatment they need? It just doesn’t make sense, a hallmark of bullying behaviors, for sure.

Stumbling across 3 psychopathic psychiatrists in a row, seemed statistically impossible and was hard to get past logically, but is actually easier than I thought, and even easier to explain, given the more global perspective, my research on “psychopathy” in society revealed.

This information, vital to all targets in the vulnerable, final stages, of a workplace bullying and mobbing campaign, will follow soon. In the mean time, recovering targets should take extra care to only seek bullying/mobbing related professional help, from professionals who already have an understanding of the bullying and mobbing phenomenon, and that psychiatrist, additionally, be recommended, by someone who really knows them.

Readers can help in the fight against workplace bullying and mobbing, by reaching out and teaching as many people as you can, about the phenomenon, and the devastating effects on targets and observers  everywhere.  Sharing your bullying stories, questions and comments on this website, is also a great help. The varying perspectives add a diverse quality to the content of the subject matter discussed.  So thanks again for the all the comments and well wishes, and please keep them coming!,

Let’s end it together!,


Job Loss due to Workplace Bullying, Taken Down by a Bully Boss. By ABC

Job Loss Due to Bullying / ABC Finally Taken Down By Bully Boss.  Next Step Recovery.  By ABC

I finally lost my job at the hands of my workplace serial bully boss, leaving at the end of November, after being accused of incompetence, based on uncompleted data entry, while working alone on a holiday.  Everything possible that could go wrong, did go wrong on that day, probably the worst day of my entire career.  I worked 11 hours that day, without a break or a meal despite being physically ill with a raging sore throat.

I called the office early the next morning reaching a coworker, and described the problems of the previous day, including how long I had worked.  I told her I would be late, being both exhausted and ill.  As soon as I arrived, I was called to Human Resources, where my bully boss was waiting, with a Human Resource Rep., having been found guilty before I could speak.   Detailing everything that went wrong, made no difference at all, having no witness to attest to my efforts.   She then added to her complaint, my arrival being late, while knowing I worked late and was ill.  Her total lack of empathy,  and disregard for my health, suddenly filled me with a chill, which grew into a fear, by the hate in her voice, thinking her capable of ending my life.  Stating I no longer felt safe, being expected to work ill, I finally left, never returning to my desk.

I had a horrible time with my bully boss for months prior to leaving my job which took a toll on my emotional and physical health.  For the first time in my life, I began having panic attacks, making my mind go blank, leaving me unable to respond to questions.

Since leaving my job, I feel utterly lost and physically and emotionally ill.  I never fully researched recovery after losing a job to bullying, feeling confident that my knowledge of the subject would be enough to protect my emotional and physical health and  prevent losing my job. How wrong I was!

Being a nurse, I logically concluded that I needed psychiatric treatment to help with my recovery, but after being evaluated by 3 different psychiatrists, I feel totally betrayed by that profession. NONE of them ever heard of workplace bullying and none of them seemed willing to take a few moments to look at my website or any other source of information on the subject. All three concluded that I was mentally ill, not emotionally injured, each labeling me with a different diagnosis.

The lessons learned;

-No matter how much you know about the phenomenon of workplace bullying and mobbing, it is almost impossible to make it stop and keep your job.

-Never seek  medical, psychiatric or legal help, for issues related to workplace bullying, from a professional who doesn’t already have an understanding of the phenomenon of workplace bullying and mobbing.

Being “emotionally stuck”, as one reader described it, I have been at a loss for words, leaving me unable to add new content to this website for several months.  But the passage of time in it’s self, is slowly improving my outlook, so keep coming back,  new content will follow soon, most likely about the subject of recovery after job loss due to bullying.


Employers Can’t Ignore Workplace Bullies. BusinessWeek.

Workplace Bullying in the News


Employers Can’t Ignore Workplace Bullies

A recent court ruling has implications for business. Adopting an anti-bullying policy can improve morale and help avoid legal trouble

Click on the first link below to read this full article on

BUSINESS WEEK. Links are underlined below.

Last month, the Indiana Supreme Court ruled in favor of a hospital employee who sued a surgeon for emotional distress and assault based on his treatment of the person at work. The ruling drew national attention as an acknowledgment by the courts of workplace bullying both as a phenomenon and as legal terminology, says Garry Mathiason, chair of the corporate compliance practice group at labor and employment law firm Littler


Click the link below to read ABC’s Published On-line comment regarding the article titled “Employers Can’t Ignore Workplace Bullies”. ABC’s on-line comment has been shortened to fit within BusinessWeek’s word count limit.


ABC’s comment regarding the article; Employers

Can’t Ignore Workplace Bullies. Full Edition printed in it’s entirity below. By ABC

Thank you for this article inclusive of those two, very important words, “workplace” and “bullying”, which when put together as in “workplace bullying”, defines a predictable phenomenon, with the potential for life altering, devastating, emotional and physical adverse health effects. These words first came together in Europe decades ago, where in many countries, especially The United Kingdom, there are laws against it. Phrases such as “stress breakdown” and “emotional injury” are common knowledge in their workplaces and those who breakdown in tears at the hands of a bully on the job, are immediately physically separated from the bully, and emergency emotional first aide is administered. Thank you for explaining that this ruling in The Indiana Supreme Court, is essentially an acknowledgement of the validity of the term “workplace bullying” as a definable legal term, as well as a definable, predictable phenomenon. This now, being just the beginning of our understanding of the phenomenon in this country, have a long way to go before those who refer to and speak out against “workplace bullying (and mobbing)” are taken seriously, and not for the whining crybabies they are thought to be. Truly knowing and understanding workplace bully and mobbing, is knowing that true bullies abuse their positions of power and influence, to not only hurt their targets, but to destroy them. True bullies are often “successful pyschopaths”, and predators, who manipulate the target’s coworkers into unwittingly participating in the abuse. Understanding workplace bullying and mobbing, is knowing that it is likely the largest hidden expense in business today. Lets learn to recognize it, name it, and end workplace bullying and mobbing together! ABC

PIT-BULL, NO BULLY, “Alpha” – The Real Leaders

Patty - Pitbull No Bully






From a personal perspective .


On the weblog banner at the top of each page of this website is an avatar women, which represents me “ABC”. Beside me is an avatar dog. That dog represents a real dog, who died this past Saturday, the day before Easter Sunday. This article is in memory of her.

Patty was her name. Half Pit-bull, half yellow Lab. She was a year old when we got her at a shelter for unwanted dogs. She had been there for over 3 months after found running loose in the woods. The family who called about her were her suspected owners who just didn’t want her anymore. We found out why..

Patty was very destructive in her early years, eating just about everything in the house that was wood or leather.  She was resistive to correction until we found the magic solution.. a tiny dab of hot pepper sauce applied to her mouth and a firm “no” while pointing out the latest destruction. This being recommended by an old-timer Vet.. the only thing that worked like a dream. Patty then became the pet of everyone’s dreams, soon, not needing the hot sauce at all.

Patty was the most cuddly dog I have ever owned. She would sit on my lap contentedly for hours, all 80 pounds of her. I often woke from a dream that I was suffocating, straining for every breath, waking up to find her lying full length across my body, the heaviest part, her big old head, on my chest.

I remember the many times she sat beside me while I wrote my anti-bullying blogs. My Pit Bully dog that wasn’t a bully at all. She was what literature describes as a true “Alpha” not the “bully” her breeds’ name suggests. “Alpha” means leading but not in an aggressive way. It’s a quiet command of strength and respect. Strangers at our door respected her fully, just her presence put the look of fear upon any intruder’s face. My true guardian.

After 8 long years that didn’t seem long at all, Patty developed breast cancer. She never complained during the several months it took for the cancer to ravage her body. During the morning of her last day she bled profusely through the wounds the cancer had made as she lay weakly on the couch we covered for her in the living room. While watching this transformation I came to the sad conclusion that it was time to put her down. I quietly sang her the songs I had made up for her throughout the years, then told her she would see Heaven today. I took last pictures. One of the best pictures I have of her, I printed for you at the top of this page. Then off to the Vet we went.

It’s ironic how she seemed to spring back to life as she saw me with the leash. The leash and the walk outside that it always promised, her favorite thing, gave her a strength I didn’t think she had left. Out to the car, she agilely hopped into the car, her second most favorite thing. She happily looked out the windows on the way to the Vet and kept her nose to the ground hungrily sniffing every animal who had ever been at the Vet’s, once there. So many smells.. She was enthralled. She didn’t seem to notice my tears nor that of my spouses nor that we were hugging her and saying goodbye. She followed the Vet tech away, out of sight without even looking back. Off to the Kingdom of Heaven. Goodbye for now, until we meet again!





What Is a Bullying Pass-by Nibble? Bullyblaster.com by Abbey Whitehall


Comment by ABC

“Bullying Pass-by nibbles” are referred to several times in this weblog, especially in  “Chapter 5. Two Pass-by Nibbles, Then The Bullying Stopped!” See the article below to learn the origins and background of this phrase and the website associated with it. Visit the link to learn more about workplace bullying and mobbing.  Lets all learn to Recognize it, Name it, and End Workplace bullying and mobbing together! ABC

Click on image to go to The Bullyblaster site

What Is a Bullying Pass-by Nibble?

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What the heck is a “Pass-By Nibble?”, you’re wondering. It’s something that both sharks and bullies do before they go in for the kill. Both test their potential victims out first by gently taking a nibble. Sharks do it with their teeth. Bullies do it with off color remarks and other, very harmless sounding comments. Comments meant to see how far you’ll let them go before you’ll stop them. The tools are different, but the outcome, your demise, is the same.
Most survivors of gruesome shark attacks report that the animal took a gentle, “Pass by Nibble” to check them out before he returned the second time, barreling in for the kill. It’s almost like the shark evaluates what the potential victim will do, how much force to use, and if the victim-to-be is worth attacking. Who really knows what a shark thinks, but he is doing some form of information gathering. It’s exactly what the bully does.
Have you noticed this? Bullies start with not-so-mean comments and as time passes, they just get more cruel? Why does this always happen? It’s because you don’t stop them in the “Pass by Nibble” stage. It’s in this beginning stage of bullying, when the bully evaluates how easy a target you are, that it’s best to stop her too. Just like stopping a shark in his “Pass by Nibble” stage, stopping a bully could prevent you from further putdowns or slurs.
What does the bully do during a “Pass by Nibble”? She makes quick, ambiguous, possibly offensive remarks to you. But, also, she often uses subtle body language that crosses very subtle personal boundaries. Like standing too close to you. If you catch it and stop her early on, you have a great chance to set some ground rules for your future interactions, so you won’t have to endure more potent putdowns in the future.
Madeline showed off her beautiful new Gucci purse to Pat, a bully. That’s when Pat took her “Pass by Nibble.” As Madeline opened her purse wider for Pat to inspect, Pat pushed harder to “see” more. She handled the wallet and a gum wrapper ooohing and ahhhing at both, with exaggerated praise. She unzipped pockets, unsnapped buttons and dug deeper into private areas of the purse where it’s usually considered impolite to go. Madeline watched quietly, chuckling right along with Pat. She felt uncomfortable, but not enough to say anything.
And Pat watched closely as well. She made a mental note that Madeline was an easy target as she probed on. Madeline wouldn’t stop Pat from “invading” her purse, so invading and eroding Madeline’s self esteem would be her next move. At least that would be more damaging than this small stuff.
Two days later, Madeline helped a coworker in the next cubicle with a new computer program. Pat walked by.
“You’re listening to HER? THAT’S dangerous. She can’t even walk and chew gum at the same time,” Pat lobbed in, and then darted off. There it was. Pat came in for the kill.
Ouch, I didn’t deserve that, Madeline thinks. But she says nothing in response, hoping anyone else around wouldn’t notice what just happened. Why did Pat insult her? What did SHE do?
She allowed Pat to take a “Pass by Nibble” and get away with it. She didn’t stop Pat early in the purse invasion, when it would have been much easier to be light and un-invested. Now, it may take Madeline several encounters to convince Pat that she won’t
tolerate being pushed around. And Madeline will be much angrier.
What are some other ways bullies take a test nibble to see if you’ll stand up for yourself?
– They move your stuff, or put their stuff where yours once was.
– They physically move too close to you-even slightly bumping you.
– They retell a story about you in the 3rd person while you stand there.
– They take issue with many things you say.
These are just a teeny sample of many ways they use to test you. But you get the idea. You’ve probably experienced others, when you paid attention. You may even pay more attention, now that you realize what’s going on.
Know that people with no mal intent can also do all of the above, too. It’s so subtle. The only way you know the difference most of the time, is by watching what happens next. Does she amp up her attacks, going in for the kill? Or does she never bother you again? No wonder a bully can slide in mean-spirited remarks without being found out. It’s so easy to hide mean feelings behind an innocent appearance.
Okay. You know you need to say or do something in response, but what do you do? Because you really don’t know exactly when a bully is testing you, or when it’s just thoughtlessness, you need to respond as unharmed and un-invested as you can muster in the moment. Being light and humorous is the absolute best way to handle any bully attack even if it is just a “nibble.” And early on, with a mild “Pass by Nibble,” it’s a lot easier to do because you aren’t mad or offended yet. Neither of you carries a deep seated grudge at this point. Try feeling and acting unoffended after she’s
taken some mean swings at you. It’s much more ifficult.
Bullies are like sharks. Both are opportunistic and deadly. The dry land versions are harder to avoid. But, understanding a little more about how bullies size you up by testing you first, will give you a leg up on dealing with them … instead of a leg off.

About the Author – Abbey Whitehall

Stop Workplace Bullying. Discover How to Speak Up to Save Your Job and Your Dignity. Visit http://www.BullyBlaster.com and sign up for a free Stop the Bullies newsletter.

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8/6/08 Comment By ABC;

Recently there was some confusion regarding who the author is of the article “What is a Bullying Passby Nibble?” When I tranferred this article from my old website, the first paragraph and the Bullyblaster logo which goes along with this article, didn’t copy over which caused the confusion. I have since corrected that error. Please know that the original source of this article is from “Bully Blaster. com” by Abbey Whitehall who is also the author of the book “Bully Blaster” whch I promote on the right side bar of this weblog. I did write about my personal experiences with passby nibbles in “Chapter 5” of my “True Stories” series. I apologize for any confusion. Sincerely, ABC

Work Place Bullying and Mobbing. By ABC


Work Place Bullying and Mobbing” are terms that most people in the United States are unfamiliar with, although according to the Workplace Bullying Institute’s – Zogby survey on workplace bullying, this problem is of epidemic proportions affecting 49% of workers nationally.

Workplace bullying is defined by the Workplace Bullying Institute as repeated, health-harming mistreatment in the form of verbal abuse, threats, intimidation, and humiliation.This is a silent epidemic in that 49% of workers still deny observing this phenomenon in their workplaces. Work place bullying is often done covertly, behind closed doors, most frequently by serial bullies who chose one target at a time.

The bully often employs the help of the “target’s” coworkers, which is called “mobbing”. Gossip and rumors of half or twisted truths about the target, are one of the primary tactics used by bullies to manipulate coworkers into participating in the abuse as well as isolating the target.

What’s so strange about this phenomenon is that targets are usually better than average employees who are cooperative and start off popular with coworkers. The target is devastated by the abuse and isolation that she/he doesn’t understand nor know how to stop because there is no reason for the abuse!

Bullies usually have personality disorders or other physical or emotional mental disorders that rob them of their empathy and compels them to behave in this way. The motivation is usually to get rid of someone who’s good performance is a threat to their own feelings of inadequacy or to control and subjugate their target.

Once chosen as a target there is a 77% chance that the target will quit, be fired, or commit suicide within 2 years. After elimination of the “target”, the bully is compelled to choose a new target within 2 days to 2 weeks.

Short newspaper and magazine articles printed in the United States fail to drive home the complexity and seriousness of this abuse of power, which is similar to the abuse of power in sexual harassment cases.

This abuse often leads to depression, anxiety and complex posttraumatic stress disorder as well as dozens of stress related physical health problems. Many targets become disabled for life.

The number of people and hours involved in bullying/mobbing campaigns is likely our largest, hidden, expense in business today.


As the word gets out about this phenomenon, workers who have been targeted by workplace bullying and mobbing are starting to speak up. In Connecticut the first anti-bullying support group, “Connecticut Bully busters” held their third meeting on August 29th. Meetings are facilitated by Professor Katherine Hermes, our state’s coordinator for the Workplace Bullying and Trauma Institute, in Bellingham, WA. Meetings are held monthly, at Central Connecticut State University.


Connecticut is the 12th state since 2003 to introduce a version of the “The Anti-bullying Healthy Workplace Bill for Connecticut, 2007. This bill died in Judiciary Committee and was never voted on to move to the Senate floor. Despite this set back, advocates of the movement continue to hope that Connecticut will be the first state to pass this legislation.

To learn more about Bullybusters, or to follow the progress and how to support this important bill, go to this Internet link:


The link to the world’s largest, most informative website, founded by the late Tim Field, a revered pioneer in the fight against work pace bullying is:


Learn more about workplace bullying and mobbing today!   Who knows, you might be serial bully’s next target!

ABC – AntiBullyingCrusador

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