"Fault" is a tough word, it sounds like you did something wrong, but really it's entirely human and a natural reaction to feel like you did. So I wouldn't use that word here.. but that said yeah the outcome was preventable. I think you are right about this:
As I see it, many or most people are deeply flawed, and there are maniacs everywhere... bullies who cannot stop being cruel, people who lead double and triple lives and lie to everyone, people who cannot get control of their addictions, people who are not capable of being rational, angry people, utterly selfish people, etc. These issues stem from deep psychological trauma, or DNA, or whatever, it doesn't matter, as for the most part it's difficult or impossible for anyone to change anyone else fundamentally, especially someone who is not a family member or close friend. With family or with a friend who we want to keep in our lives, we may wish to at least make an attempt to do that, to change someone. But with acquaintances, colleagues, strangers, forget about it, these deeply flawed and difficult people are how they are and we have no power to impact them. But in the same way, they should have no power to impact us. The crazy things they say (and do) are 100% a reflection of who they are and have no connection to anything about us. So sure, the constructive part of the comment you mentioned is fine and helpful, but the cruel part is a nothing, it's static, it's this woman looking at a mirror and talking to herself.
While we can choose our friends, and we really should accept family if we can, we can ignore strangers and move on. With colleagues... the reality is that it's not fun to deal with people like this, but they are everywhere, at almost every workplace, and we do need to put bread on the table!! So I see working with people like this as - this is somewhat annoying, but it is also inevitable (as inevitable as the rain), and therefore it is part of the salary. This is part of why people actually give us this incredibly sought after thing, money... to not walk away as one can do with a stranger or random bully, but to deal with people like this. As much as the salary is paid for doing productive work, its also for dealing with these people who we would otherwise never want to see or talk to again. It's also work. In some situations it is even perhaps the primary part of the work, as some people are so relentless in their bullying etc. that almost no one can work with them.
For me, you are giving this person too much credit and respect, and this is the core of the problem. She likely apologized to you not to make you feel better, but to help her to live with herself and her own issues, including abusive behavior. I don't know if she's a narcissist, but you know "narcissist" is far from the only type of difficult, deeply flawed, problematic type of person. What she said was definitely abusive and wrong. On the surface, outwardly, of course you need to show respect, especially given the supervisory role she had, but in reality, whatever. She's talking to a mirror, in the end abusing herself, and worthy of pity more than anything else.Admin wrote: ↑3 months agoThen my second colleague was the main one to supervise me. Now I will preface this by saying that I respect her a lot and I don't think she's a narcissist at all. She was partly doing what my other colleague was doing, there was positive reinforcement, but from very early on, there was also abuse. How do I know it was abuse and I was not just imagining it? It's simple, she would apologize later for having said something hurtful, assuring me that she didn't mean it and asking if I was OK.