A letter just for you ...
I’m glad you’re here. I imagine you stumbled onto this site because you are trying to understand what happened to you or perhaps someone you love. I vividly remember that sense of panic and hopelessness too. You might have Googled “gaslighting,” “gossip,” or “manipulation” not yet knowing there is a name and a dynamic body of research that tells the critical story of your experience. Though each unfolding is unique, there is a predictable trajectory of workplace abuse documented in the literature and spelled out under this tab “Workplace Bullying: Essential Knowledge.” I am a college professor who conducts research primarily using the methodologies of Autoethnography and Narrative Inquiry, whose etymology is grounded in the power of story. To learn more about the research approaches, click on the tab – “Beautiful Research.” Over the last two years, I have conducted a large-scale study on the impact of workplace bullying on employees’ propensity to engage in creative work.
To date, I have collected the stories of over 200 targets, ranging in age from 18 to 75, spanning across 10 countries, 35 states, and 36 industries - all who suffered psychological terrorism on the job that led to anxiety, depression, PTSD, high blood pressure, heart failure, and at times suicide. In addition, I have conducted over 50 follow-up interviews lasting on average, 2 hours. In the coming years, I am committed to collecting hundreds of more stories in order to support targets, charge complicit bystanders to stop contributing to the abuse through their omission or commission, build upon the literature, and work towards active change through the enactment of protective state and organizational level legislation and policy.
Please know, you are not alone, you have options, your voice matters. What was meant for your harm will transform into your becoming. Many find healing and power in naming the abuse, understanding the research, and sharing their story.
Sincerely ~ Dorothy Suskind, Ph.D.