Who Becomes a Stalker?

January 4, 2011

STALKING IS A CRIME!

Once you’ve been a victim, you know how life-destroying stalking can be.

Who Becomes a Stalker?

Stalkers are usually isolated and lonely, coming from the “disadvantaged” of our society; however, a stalker can occupy any place in our entire social spectrum. Often, the stalking may be triggered by a significant trauma or loss in the life of the perpetrator, usually within at least seven years of the stalking behavior.   (For example, relationship dissolution or divorce, job termination, loss/potential loss of a child, or an ill parent.)  Most stalkers are not psychotic.  In a comparative study of psychotic versus non-
psychotic stalkers (Mullen et al. 1999), 63% of the sample was found to be suffering from a common psychiatric condition, such as major depression, personality disorder, or substance dependence–with personality disorder being the most common diagnosis.

Ex-intimates: Common stalkers are people who previously shared a romantic relationship with the victim, and former intimates are the most common type of stalking target.   This can be either from a long or short term relationship.

Family members: A stalker may target a member of their family, such as a parent or sibling.   This would most likely be a resentful or rejected stalker, and they would target a family member they feel had rejected,  humiliated, or abused them in the past.

Friends and Acquaintances: The victim may be stalked by an intimacy seeker or an incompetent suitor motivated by a desire to start a romantic relationship with the victim.  The victim may be stalked by a resentful stalker, typically a neighbor, who may be involved in a disagreement with the victim about something such as noise, the location of a tree, or pets.

Workplace Contacts: In their study of stalkers, Mullen (et al) found that 23% had a professional relationship with their victim, most often a medical practitioner.  Other stalkers may be supervisors, fellow employees, service providers, clients, or others who show up at the victim’s workplace. Stalking behaviors directed at the victim may include:  sexual harassment, physical and sexual assaults, robberies, or even homicide.  A violent workplace stalker usually has a history of poor job performance, a high rate of absenteeism, and a record of threats and confrontations with people they resent in the workplace.

Victims often do not tell their co-workers or supervisors about the person who is stalking them because they fear reprisals from the stalker or other employees, don’t think they will be believed, or feel embarrassed about the situation.

Doctors, nurses, psychologists, or other health care providers may become the targets of stalking by obsessed clients or patients.   (Or the other way around)  Teachers may become stalked by students.  (Or the other way around.)  Psychiatrists are at particular risk for being the targets of stalking because of their contact with people with psychiatric conditions.

Strangers: respond politely.  These are most commonly Intimacy Seekers and Incompetent Suitors, but may also be Predatory stalkers or Resentful stalkers.  These stalkers may hide their identity from their victims at first, and reveal it after stalking their victim for some time in order to get closer to them. Victims may be initially flattered when stalker approaches them and date with their stalker, after many requests.  This can have the unintentional effect of encouraging the stalker, and making them believe that their love is reciprocated.

Gender: Stalkers are far more likely to be male, however, women can also become stalkers.   Women are more likely to  target someone they have known, usually a  professional contact.  Men are less likely to pursue other men, while females will often target other females.  The majority of female stalkers are intimacy seekers seeking to establish relationships, whereas men show a broader range of motivations, and are more often to be seeking to restore relationships.  Women are as likely to use violence as men, and there does not tend to be a difference between genders regarding the duration of  a stalking.  Thus, while the contexts and motives for stalking may differ between men and women, the intrusiveness of the behaviors and potential for harm does not.

Take care and STAY SAFE!

 

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  1. January 4, 2011 at 11:11 AM

    Have you ever thought that perhaps the people who are stalked have actually fallen victim to a crime called organized group stalking and harassment?
    I am a victim of this crime and have been for 17 years now..When I first started to see that I was stalked, I though it was my X who hired a bunch of bozos to do this to me..I believed that for a decade until I could not hang onto that notion any longer. I now know that my X was not involved in this stalking campaign but that this was very organized stalking and social control.
    Now I am an activist for the exposure of this crime and I network with many activist for all causes and they too see that they have community stalkers and are under surveillance because they are speaking out or being proactive about a cause.

  2. January 4, 2011 at 11:45 AM

    Good post. Thanks for sharing this valuable information.

  3. daanetwork
    January 4, 2011 at 12:46 PM

    FABULOUS ARTICLE ANNY!!!.You really covered this well and I am thrilled that I have you as a resource for all of DAAN’s victims and survivors!..THANK YOU!!!.

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