Showing posts with label mental illness. Show all posts
Showing posts with label mental illness. Show all posts

Friday, November 22, 2019

See for Yourself: Bob Malm Refers to Me as a “Sad Individual, Starving for Attention” in an Email to the St. Dysfunction Vestry

Here we have another email in which Bob Malm tries to discredit me by referring to me as a “sad individual, starved for attention.” That’s a curious claim, since I state in writing in December 2017 that I wanted no further contact from Bob Malm.

As always, we see a total lack of appropriate pastoral presence on Bob Malm’s part, as well as the usual organizational narcissism of St. Dysfunction. And the “constant support” of the diocese—yet another reason to throw in the towel when it comes to the Diocese of Virginia.

Of course, there’s also no sign that Amy Medrick, or any vestry members, told Bob that this sort of discourse about Christians entrusted to Bob’s pastoral care is inappropriate. And while it would be inappropriate at almost any other church, this sort of thing is acceptable at Grace church.

Prospective interims, beware! This is the stained glass cesspool that is Grace Episcopal church.


Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Bob Malm: Serial Liar? Mentally Ill? Or Both?

It’s been a while since we looked at the overall pattern of Bob Malm’s lies. So, with that in mind, this post gives an overview of Bob’s various lies, and explores the potential root causes.

As to the scope of Bob’s lies, these appear to go back years. For example, Bob allegedly told Phil Smith, who at the time was serving on the vestry and has a background in HR, “Don’t worry about it. They’ll be retiring this year,” when Phil brought up poor behavior by church office staff. Roughly six years later, Bob tried the same lie on me to induce me to serve as junior warden. I initially fell for it, but later called Bob on it. In response, Bob began volunteering that he didn’t know when they would retire — but without coming right out and admitting he’d been lying to vestry members for years.

Flash forward to our kerfuffle. In it, Bob lied to the courts, claiming that various phrases, taken out of context, were threats. Under oath,, during discovery, he also made the claim that two of my cousins, and my mom, “time and again” make meetings with him and canceled — the suggestion being that I am somehow the person making meetings with him. There’s just one little hitch — this simply never happened, and if you push Bob on it, he cannot provide any documentation of his claim. Guaran-friggin-teed.

Then we get into some of his other imaginary claims. Doubtless, Jeff Chiow had a hand in these, but at the end of the day, as one of Jeff’s clients, Bob had to sign off on any court filings. Thus, Bob told a series of lies in his pleadings, including:
  • His claim that there had been a church shooting in the fictional town of Sugarland Texas (hence Jeff Chiow’s moniker of “Sugarland Chiow”).
  • His weird interrogatories, in which he lies by implication, asking if, inter alia, I am the author of the Survivors Awaken the Church blog, since my story is there. Yet even a cursory glance at the site would make clear that I’m not the author, nor the publisher.
  • That I never served as a police officer.
  • That I never was licensed to practice law.
  • That I violated the existing court order.
Apropos these issues, there is a distinction to be made between advocating for your client’s position, and misinforming the court. In other words, it’s one thing to say, “Plaintiff researched the matter extensively, and found no evidence that defendant ever served as a police officer,” and proferring the issue as a statement of fact. Having done the latter, Bob and Sugarland tried to pull a fast one on the courts.

Speaking of, Bob and Sugarland tried to pull a fast one on the Pennsylvania courts. As Jeff no doubt knows, one must have leave of court in order to issue a third-party subpoena in a protective order case in that state. Yet Jeff repeatedly tried to bypass that requirement and slide one by on the courts. Needless to say, word in the local bar association is that Sugarland has ethical issues, and in the unlikely event he ever again seeks admission pro hac vice in those courts, he may find he gets a very cold reception.

There’s also evidence that Sugarland and Bob have lied in other fora. For example, Bob’s wife Leslie claims I admitted in open court that Mom’s blog is really mine. So where did she come up with that notion? Not that Leslie herself doesn’t lie when she is in the midst of conflict, but anecdotal evidence suggests she may have gotten that lie from Sugarland.

So where does that leave us? 

Clearly, Bob has been lying for many years, as evinced by his lie about the office staff. Not only that, but it apparently worked with Phil Smith, leading Bob to add it to his arsenal.

It’s interesting, too — members of Bob’s family, like him, lie when in conflict in order to try to get the upper hand. That suggests that lying in such situations is normative in the Malm household, which in itself is telling.

This view is bolstered by Bob’s claims about my serving as a police officer and being licensed to practice law. There, Bob’s lies appear to have their genesis in doubts about my veracity so like a lemming, he took the plunge and ran over the cliff. This, like his invention of the town of “Sugarland,” seemingly is less about telling a falsehood and more about a reckless indifference to the truth. The attitude seems to be, “I’m in court and trying to get the upper hand, so what does it matter?” In other words, these appear to be the hallmarks of someone who routinely plays fast and loose with the truth. 

In other words, my belief is that Bob indeed is a serial liar.

Where does this come from? All factors suggest that Bob is way out there on the narcissism curve, probably to the point of having a personality disorder. On the one hand, Bob loudly asserts that he doesn’t need anyone. On the other, he appears to have a strong need for adulation and accolades, and seems to routinely manipulate others to meet those needs. In keeping with this, it is almost impossible for Bob to take responsibility for his actions; even an apology comes fully loaded with, “I’m sorry you were upset, but....”

In keeping with this, Bob appears to be big into image. He’s very focused on how he dresses, how he looks, etc. Even the various roles he’s played in life, from captain of his prep school lacrosse and football teams and yearbook editor, to priest, to marathoner, appear calculated to obtain recognition and ratification.

Besides playing roles that garner attention, narcissists also are famous for their ability to lie when needed, even when the assertion is facially ludicrous. Just like Trump arguing that his administration comprises the best and the brightest, Bob is more than willing to claim he’s not ignoring the requirements of his job, despite the utter dysfunction in the church office, the shoddy records, and more. One looks at his claims and laughs, yet Bob seemingly thinks his lies will work.

Narcissists also are well known for their lack of empathy. Here, one only has to look at Bob’s efforts to drag a dying woman into court to conclude that not only is he a narcissist, but he may well have concluded that Sugarland is a narcissist too, and have played to that attribute. The fact that between the two of them neither appears to have thought that this would be counterproductive suggests not only a serious lack of common sense, but an utter lack of empathy.

Of course, at some point lack of empathy crosses into anti-social behavior. Is Bob a sociopath? I don’t know, but I suspect so. Thus far, I see no sign that there is any compunction against almost any sort of behavior if he thinks he can get away with it.

In short, my conclusion is that Bob indeed is a serial liar. I also have concluded that he suffers from narcissistic personality disorder. As to whether he is a sociopath, I am not sure, but I lean strongly towards believing that he is. But no matter how you parse it, Bob is toxic. Charming, but toxic.

Thursday, January 24, 2019

Check it Out: Questions for Assistant Rector Candidates

With the parish’s annual meeting now only a few days away, Grace church has said it hopes to begin the search for a full-time assistant rector shortly afterwards. With that in mind, and recognizing that this controversy likely will come up during the interview process (and should!), here are some insider’s questions that candidates can use when they meet with Bob Malm.

  • Have you personally reached out to Mr. Bonetti and his family to resolve this conflict? Have you spoken directly with his mother about these issues? His spouse? How did that go? 
  • It looks like you made a settlement offer to Mr. Bonetti. If accepted, how would a settlement ensure your safety and that of the parish?
  • I see that you refer to Eric as “dysfunctional,” “sick,” and “twisted” in your emails to the diocese. How does that comport with your vows as a priest and the baptismal covenant?
  • You claim that random words, like “psychological torture,” taken out of context are a threat. Can you help me understand how these are threats?
  • You included Eric’s spouse in your email instructing them to find a new church. Why was that necessary?
  • It looks like Mr. Bonetti attempted to resolve this matter with you in January 2016. Why did you say no?
  • I understand the church attempted to subpoena Eric’s mother, who is dying of COPD. Can you explain to me why that was necessary?
  • You have stated on multiple occasions that you believe that Mr. Bonetti is mentally ill. If that’s the case, what steps did you take to get him help? Have you ever discussed your concerns directly with him?
  • Do you think Grace Church’s internal dynamics are healthy? If so, why?
  • Why did Fanny Belanger abruptly leave with two years left on her letter of agreement?
  • How do your actions as rector reflect the baptismal covenant to members of the church?
  • What effect has this conflict had on the church and its finances, and what is your plan for resolving these issues?
  • The church has lost more than a 100 pledging units since this conflict arose. Why do you think that is and how do you plan to address those issues?
  • How do you feel about the fact that Eric and his entire family have left the Christian faith over this conflict?
  • What do you see as the ultimate outcome of this conflict?
Of course, some of these are tough questions to ask during an interview. But candidates who don’t ask these questions run the risk of being dragged into a situation that damages their careers and diminishes their own faith. 

One further caution: If you interview for this position and choose to explore issues related to this conflict, make sure you get actual answers to your questions, then “trust but verify.” Don’t be taken in by Bob’s usual routines of denial, evasion and charm bombing.

My advice to candidates: Learn as much as you can,  make your own decision, proceed at your own peril. 

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

See for Yourself: Follow-on Message from Kemp Williams

Here is the follow-on email from Kemp Williams to Bob Malm; it is the successor to the exchange previously posted.

Here, we see some possible paranoia on Kemp’s part, as he references the Legacy Society, which comprises those who have remembered the church in their wills. (Mine used to, as it named the church as my contingent remainderman, but rest assured, that provision is long gone.)

At any rate, this email brings forth the alarming proposition that I may still know what’s going on day-to-day at the parish. Horrors!

And I can assure you: Bob and Leslie Malm are among my most avid readers. I have the access logs to prove it, LOL.

Saturday, August 25, 2018

See for Yourself: Parishioner Jean Reed Describes Me as a “Very, Very Disturbed Man”

For another great example of systemic narcissism at St. Dysfunction, here’s a wonderful email between Jean Reed and Bob Malm, in which the Jesus-babble is mixed thoroughly with the discussions of mental illness.

As always, there’s no concern for anyone else. Nothing at all Christlike about the attitude, even when, as here, it’s mixed with Jesus-babble. Nor does Jean understand the meaning of the word “slander,” as he casually tosses it in with the whole, “servants of Christ” nonsense.

And while Jean is quick to send his opinion off to Jeff “Sugarland” Chiow and Bishop Shannon, nowhere have I seen any sign that he’s ever made an effort at healing or reconciliation. All of which is a little curious for an avowed “servant of Christ.”

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Bob Malm, Troll

Years ago I had a wonderful, mixed-breed dog named Sugar. She was a gentle, affectionate creature, with some amusing quirks.

One of those quirks was that any time she passed gas, she would turn around, look indignantly at her backside, and pretend like she had no idea what was going on back there. Of course, she didn’t fool anyone, but she felt she had to go through the motions.

And so it is with Bob Malm. His stream of innuendo centered on my mental health, as well as his overt, written claims that I am mentally ill, are both defamatory and painfully obvious. As such, they are an abusive use of the authority entrusted to him as clergy.