By | May 18, 2012 75 Comments

Domestic violence and the high-risk personality disorders

Certain personality types are at high risk of perpetrating domestic violence. I want to emphasize physical domestic violence here. As in my last article, the borderline, narcissistic and sociopathic personalities lead the risk pack here.

Let’s look first at the borderline personality. The borderline personality is a powder-keg of rage prone to detonate at any experience of a perceived wound, insult, threat of abandonment or (as a less appreciated match to their rage), threat to their malignant pride. Sound pretty narcissistic? Welcome to the synergy between these two personality types.

The borderline personality, much like many narcissists, is littered with “rage mines” that can “tripped” in a flash with a wrong step, which is exactly why it can be so nerve-wracking to be involved with one.

“Walking on eggshells” may be an understatement in describing the unnerving experience of dealing closely, or intimately, with a borderline personality.

I might suggest that even more metaphorically apt than “walking on eggshells” is the experience with borderlines as of “walking through a rage-littered minefield.”

Again, make the wrong the step and beware the rage that can follow with disorienting, sometimes frightening and bewildering intensity. The borderline individual may even goad you, provoke you into stepping on a “rage mine;” indeed, she may salivate at the chance to righteously “go off” with an utter lack of accountability for her provocation, depicting herself, in the process, as having been victimized by your insensitivity.

In any case, her abuse and violation of YOU will be remarkably self-excused as she positions herself, pathologically, as the victim.

I emphasize: Because this is such a narcissistic process, it’s often challenging, as I stressed in my last article, to distinguish the borderline, narcissist and sociopath, all of whom may present similar, if not identical forms, of disturbing “acting-out” fireworks.

As I’ve suggested, when the borderline is “borderlining” in her violent raging, she is acting-out utterly pathological narcissism, even sometimes at sociopathic levels. I’ve previously written about the borderline personality as “transient sociopath,” because in her rages she can be as callous and destructive as the sociopath, not to mention sinisterly vindictive and totally remorseless in the expression of her rage.

Now how about the narcissist? In the narcissist’s case I would designate the state of “outrage” to be a very typical trigger of his rage, which can lead to domestic abuse. The narcissist, it should be noted, often feels “outraged.”

His “outrage” leads to his “rage.”

The narcissist feels outraged to be ignored, disregarded, offended, insulted, misunderstood. States of outrage, in general, are conducive to very poor emotional self-control; because the narcissist is so often outraged, he is often “out of control” emotionally. His rages often have the timbre of a wounded, tantrumming child thrashing at a sibling or parent for recompense at having been mistreated. The problem is that he is not a child, he is often a big, strong adult, thus his tantrums are proportionately more extreme and infinitely more harmful. A raging child is unpleasant and stressful to deal with; a raging narcissist can be scary, destructive and dangerous.

As we know, in the narcissist’s case, and underlying all pathological levels of narcissism, we enter the terrain of “over-entitlement,” really the bane of all interpersonal psychopathology. The narcissist believes that the world should treat him fairly, sensitively; he believes that the world—that is, everyone—should give him his due (whether he’s earned it or not); he has the underlying belief that he should be protected from, really excused from having to endure, the “slings and arrows” that others have to suffer with composure.

Deprive the narcissist of these protective, catering experiences and you are inviting his wrath and retribution. Consequently, the narcissist is at high risk to abuse his partners and others, domestically and otherwise.

The sociopath’s view of the world, in general, is somewhat different from the narcissist’s, which is to say that at sociopathic levels of narcissism, the sociopath is viewing the world from a somewhat different perspective than at the narcissistic level of narcissism.

Here’s the difference: whereas the narcissist, as I just noted, tends to regard the world, and all in it, as owing him unwavering respect, attention, recognition, sensitivity and the like, and will feel outraged to be denied this experience (his outrage leading directly to his rage), the sociopath, while he may be comparatively less obsessed with feeling appreciated, understood and getting his “due,” will be highly, uniquely oriented to viewing the world—and everyone in it—as existing to supply him with whatever he wants to “take” from it.

The sociopath, in this sense, feels entitled to “take” from others whatever it is he wants. Others do not exist as individuals with legitimate personal boundaries. There really are no boundaries sacred to the sociopath: if he can transgress boundaries to “take” what he wants, and “get away with it,” he will do so, because he feels absolutely entitled to have what he wants; if others have what he wants he feels absolutely entitled to take it or steal it from them; and the impact of his incursions on others’ space and dignity means nothing to him because the sociopath relates to others as “objects,” and thus feels no more remorse ransacking a human being than he would an empty room full of things he covets.

This obviously primes the sociopath to be a high-risk domestic violence offender. He will abuse easily, without compunction, because you are merely an “object” to him; in his frustration or rage, for instance, he might kick you in the stomach and bend you over in agony, and feel no more remorse than if he were to kick and dent his car door in a similar discharge of rage. As a matter of fact, his subsequent reaction is less likely to be genuine sorrow than regret, or worry, at the consequences or inconveniences that might ensue from his violent action. In any case, he is likely to stand over you and watch you writhe in pain on the floor as if he’s kicked a car door.

This summarizes some of the features and dynamics of these troubling personality types and what puts them at high risk to domestically abuse. I hope it’s a helpful summary.

(This article is copyrighted ©2012 by Steve Becker, LCSW. My use of female and/or male gender pronouns is strictly arbitrary and not to suggest that males and females aren’t both capable of exhibiting all the attitudes and behaviors discussed.)

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Oh, Dr. Becker,
I LOVE this article!! And, ain’t that kinda sad, lol!

But, wow! You really, really understand this stuff & describe the similarities and differences so perfectly. I’ve never read anything that describes this stuff so well!!

“Because this is such a narcissistic process, it’s often challenging, as I stressed in my last article, to distinguish the borderline, narcissist and sociopath, all of whom may present similar, if not identical forms, of disturbing “acting-out” fireworks.”

Oh yess!!!

“In the narcissist’s case I would designate the state of “outrage” to be a very typical trigger of his rage, which can lead to domestic abuse. The narcissist, it should be noted, often feels “outraged.”
His “outrage” leads to his “rage.”………the narcissist is so often outraged, he is often “out of control” emotionally. His rages often have the timbre of a wounded, tantrumming child thrashing at a sibling or parent for recompense at having been mistreated……Deprive the narcissist of these protective, catering experiences and you are inviting his wrath retribution. ”


“we enter the terrain of “over-entitlement,” really the bane of all interpersonal psychopathology.”
OMG, so true!

You make an amazing distinction here:
“Here’s the difference: whereas the narcissist, as I just noted, tends to regard the world, and all in it, as owing him unwavering respect, attention, recognition, sensitivity and the like, and will feel outraged to be denied this experience (his outrage leading directly to his rage), the sociopath, while he may be comparatively less obsessed with feeling appreciated, understood and getting his “due,” will be highly, uniquely oriented to viewing the world—and everyone in it—as existing to supply him with whatever he wants to “take” from it.”

Ns, Ps & BPDs are all toxic, but you have described each one’s modus operandi, so that we can identify which type of toxic person we are dealing with. And, I completely agree that, bottom line, it all comes down to their sense of “over-entitlement”.

Thank you so much.


The ex stood outside in his driveway and threw an object at my face. I went down like a sack of concrete, bleeding copiously from a head wound, and he just walked away and left me laying there. He came back outside a few minutes later while I was rinsing blood out of my eyes from a bucket of dirty water so I could see to drive to the hospital. He told me to get the f*** off his property or he would have me arrested for trespassing. I drove two miles to my mother’s house screaming in agony. I was not in pain from the wound – that came later – it was pain from the shock and horror of being destroyed by someone I loved and trusted.

He tried to get me to come back to him several times after the physical violence happened. He always started by saying how sorry he was and always ended with saying that it was all my fault. I never went back because he would always be the man who broke my face and left me bleeding on a gravel driveway. I still communicated by phone when he contacted me, until one day I decided this damaged man couldn’t be allowed to damage me any more. That was nearly a year ago.

I’ve written on a message board in the past that if anyone needs a good reason not to wrangle with a sociopath/psychopath, I’m more than willing to show photos of the damage Mr. I-Never-Hit-Women did to me in an explosive rage. And he just didn’t care that he scarred me for life.


I am so sorry this happened to you. The scar’s they leave us with on the inside are hidious and last a life time, so sorry you also have scar’s on the outside, but alot of women and men do not survive these people. We did.



I am so sorry you went thru this. Hopefully now you are free or freer than you were.



The intersection between abuse (emotional/psychological/physical) and personality disorders is a topic in which I am highly interested.

Your article is great and no one articulates these issues as well as you do.

Thank you!



Dawn G,

Good for you for drawing the line. So sad that you went through that. My experiences with the Bad Man truly changed my life and changed who I am today.

It has been nearly 7 years and I have reached a point of being thankful for the lessons I learned and for having my eyes opened.

But it was a long journey to reach thankfulness for sure.


kim frederick

Hi Steve, As always, I appreciate your articles. I have a question, though. Can you please explain the difference between such issues as C ptsd, NVS, trauma bonding, co-dependancy and BPD? I really need a knowledgable, and compassionate explanation, because, frankly, I’m confused. Thanks, Steve. I really appreciate your sincere concern. KF.


Hi Kim, That was a loaded question, it made me dizzy.

Ox Drover


Great article as usual! For practical purposes I think, though, it doesn’t matter a tinker’s dam which kind of personality disorder we are dealing with…they are all impossible to deal with no matter what their “diagnosis” is–.of course if you have them in treatment you have to have a legitimate diagnosis, but for those of us dealing with them on a personal level all we need to know, I think is do they meet the requirements for ANY personality disorder.

All of the personality disorders, as you pointed out, can be violent and dangerous.

I read somewhere that physically violent DV abusers are 75% psychopaths–my guess is that people who are regularly physically abusive that almost 100% of them are some kind of personality disordered individuals. (Maybe with also some other kinds of mental illness involved as well)

Thanks for this article though, I think explains a lot.

kim frederick

((((HENS))))) So glad you have a pc, and now, I do too.
Thanks for understanding my confusion.

I’m working again and starting to feel sort of normal. 🙂
How are the weiners? Pinky doodle is my buddy, even if he does head butt the cat-food bag, so as to get more cat food to spill out, when I go to feed him…sigh. some narcissistic traits you just have to weigh against what you get out of the relationship….he adores me, and that’s good. 🙂

This is a great article and discussion. Thank you Steve.

DawnG, it’s interesting that I had the opposite experience with my spath. He protected my face and was extremely concerned with my looks.

I was 18 when I was in a car accident. It left a huge slash on my chin. I was in serious condition, bleeding internally in the emergency room. Spath walked in and took control, as he tends to do. He demanded to talk to the doctor in charge. He ordered them to call a plastic surgeon right away.

“Nobody else is gonna touch her face!” he commanded. Then he whispered to me that those ER doctors would botch up my face if I allowed them to sew it up. Only a plastic surgeon would be able to fix it right so it wouldn’t leave a scar.

A plastic surgeon was dragged out of bed at 1AM to sew up my face. I still got a huge scar anyways.

Spath was always afraid that I would cut off my hair. (which I did twice in those 25 years) He loved my hair.

Now I understand why he was so concerned with my looks. It’s not what one might think. He wanted me to look good because it fed his envy. The envy was what provoked his rages. When he picked a fight, it was only to justify erupting the deep rage that simmered all the time.

The reason I know this is because he once said, “keep calling me names so I can hate you more.” He liked feeding his hatred and envy was his favorite food.

kim frederick

I would agree that it doesn’t matter which personality disorder it is…if we could just be certain we had a personality disorder….I’m asking for a differencial between C ptsd and BPD. A fairly simple request to those who put themselves forward as experts. It matters in the lives of those who are labeled. Maybe, not so much in the lives of those who label.
Sometimes, I think, it’s okay to demand clarification. It goes along with boundrys and being true to one self.

I just looked up CPTSD,

It’s interesting that it sounds like child abuse, which has been implicated as one possible contributor to psychopathy and BPD.

Of course we are not likely to make headway in getting these people to act normal, but for me, it’s important to understand how they got this way. My understanding of them, allows me to have compassion.

Compassion protects me from their slime. When they attack me, I don’t take it personally because I know that they are reacting in response to what happened to them. It’s not about me and therefore I don’t get slimed. Compassion is a powerful and protective feeling.

the sisterhood

Wow, Steve! This is a great article. It’s interesting though because my ex spath always shied away from physical conflict. He was never, ever in a fist fight and he never approached me in a physically vilolent way. But he was so callous when I was hurting. There were several occasions when I would be crying my heart out on the ground begging him to talk with me and listen to my feelings and he would just stand over me and yell at me to get up and shut up. He never wanted to acknowledge that I was in pain. I was in complete shock the first time he did it to me.

I was definitely and object to him that he used and he always took what he thought he was entitled to.

It’s weird though. He always seemed to do these things to impress others. He wanted so desperately to keep up with his rich friends or outshine his poor ones. That is the core of what drove him.


Wow. Great article, Steve. You described my niece (borderline,) a late friend (narcissist with temper tantrums,) and my P sister. Thank you so much.

I really would like to know more about BPD and Ns (the different types.) True, it doesn’t matter what they are when you are under attack, but I’m a curious soul so I’d like to know the differences.

BTW, your explanations agreed entirely with my determinations, although both my niece and my late friend were both diagnosed as BPD and narcissist respectively.

Skylar, loved that link. Will have to go back and study it more when I am not so tired. Thank you so much for that.

As a FYI to everyone, my company’s client installed a program this week that “monitors” wherever anybody goes on the Internet using their equipment/system. It even reads (scans) your emails. Certain key words will shoot your email off to their privacy people so a human can read it.

Today, in a discussion with my boss, SHE called it a Big Brother effort on their part.

Then she told me that she is getting me off their system and putting me on ours. I’ll also be getting a new and better laptop. Yeah!!!

It might take a few weeks for all the transitions to be made.

Dawn, I am so sorry that you went through what you did. What an ass.



I enjoy learning more about these personality types, being curious too (like G1S), the main reason I study these disorders (when I have time to do so). Regarding my family-of-origin, I strongly suspect that my mother and her mother (who’s deceased) had/have borderline personality disorder (BPD). My mother can be MEAN toward others (friends, strangers, family members, etc.), outright rude, and have no remorse over whatever she said and/or did. She could care less about people’s feelings. She would explode (rage) and once it was over, the rest of us would “be shaking in our boots,” and she would be just fine, going on as if nothing major just happened. My mother is capable of being compassionate and caring, but if she perceives that you’ve crossed her in some way, watch out. Amazing.


Steve, thank you for this excellent discussion.

The second exspath wasn’t physically abusive, explosive, or anything else. Just quietly working his long-con.

My eldest son was diagnosed as Borderline Cluster B. I believe that his father was probably the same, as well as sociopath. VERY scary…..very scary……..


OxD….I feel the same way – differentiating between disorders is great on an academic level, but what they “are” doesn’t matter so much to me. I’m out – and, that’s all I need to know, right now. Perhaps, after I’ve gotten some strong healing under my belt, I’ll give a tinker’s dam (LMAO!).



The ex always wanted me to look as unattractive as possible so that no other men would look at me. He hated makeup, hated that I colored the grays in my hair, hated that I got it cut and styled, hated that I dressed well. Basic grooming pissed him off to no end. He pushed food at me all the time so that I would get fat and he got so angry when I would say that I didn’t want it. And then of course there was a great deal of emotional and verbal abuse. He could control me better if I was ugly and unwanted – especially if *I* felt ugly and unwanted.

He aimed that object at my head intentionally. I’ll never forgot the look on his face when he did it. He didn’t care at that moment about the consequences. Later he cared because it made him look very bad and he’s all about his fake persona. It showed he was a violent abuser and he wanted so much for me to take the blame for it. He did his best to make up lies to show that I had started a fight and deserved it but the people who matter to me never believed it for a second.


Thank you all for the positive responses.


I didn’t think I would but I did survive. Now I’m learning to thrive.


In 40+ years I never knew a minute of freedom. After the horror of the psychopath I had to hit the reset button on my entire life. It’s been a hell of a painful road but I can finally say that I am free. I’m especially free to say “NO”. I never knew how to say it!


It is going to be a long never-ending journey. That’s life, yes? There won’t be any more Bad Men – not for me, and I’m guessing not for you either.


DawnG, I’m grateful that you got out, got the picture, and “got it.” Your frank discussion on your experiences is very reassuring – the ability to call it what it was and speak truthfully about it gives me courage (even though the second exspath was not violent), and will definitely give others who are STILL enmeshed in the cycle of domestic violence hope.

Freedom. It’s something to celebrate, really.

Brightest blessings

Ox Drover

You know, my egg donor is very dysfunctional and though I have worked in psych for quite some time before my retirement, I have never been able to come up with a diagnosis that “fit her”

Her control issues only seemed aimed at me ONLY.

Her enabling issues were focused on the male bad boy in the family, first her brother and then Patrick.

Her “scape goat” was me, and only me.

You can explain her bad behavior in terms of “family role theory” and as “adult child of an alcoholic” (though by the time she was born no one in her family drank except her brother when he got older) and her grandfather….but she learned that PATTERN of functioning in a family.

With me, she was sometimes physically BRUTAL….emotionally brutal, and spiritually brutal…but I can’t remember her ever mistreating or manipulating or trying to control anyone else.

Why me and ONLY me? she was jealous of my relationship with my grandparents. She was envious of the TIME they spent with me because when she was growing up they were focused on getting enough food to feed her and enough clothing to cover her nakedness, but by the time I came along, they were in a position to buy me the “coat of many colors” and to especially SPEND TIME with me.

She was neither the older MALE HEIR and she wasn’t the golden child of their old age, so she was in effect the neglected (she perceived) middle child even though I was a grandchild not a child.

Since she did not have any sons, and sons were valuable in my family, as many were in that culture…she emotionally took over my sons (taking in Patrick against my will when he started getting into trouble with the law)

I have thought and thought about a diagnosis for my egg donor, and have not come up with any PD that fit, but only the jealousy of a middle child raised in a dysfunctional family who still at 83 years old is functioning under the things she learned and internalized at an early age.

Maybe she had “C-PTSD” (her brother abused her physically choking her unconscious from birth to age 7) or any number of popularly ascribed abuse syndromes, but the bottom line is that the diagnosis doesn’t matter with her…what does matter is realizing that I can’t trust her and that she is a hard core ENABLER and will punish anyone who doesn’t go along with her.



Why do you think your mother isn’t a P?

Don’t a lot of Ps learn their behavior from their families of origin?

Dr. Martha Stout claims that 75% of Ps are also alcoholics so there would be a lot of the dysfunctional family dynamics present in their families as well.

I’m confused. I know that you’re not saying that these are mutually exclusive. I’m just not getting what it is that you are saying.


Dawn: 🙁 *huggles* ^_^ That sounds awful. Did your eye become infected from the dirty water? I’m too scared to look at photos. I can’t stand even reading about abuse cases of any kind, whether spouse, child or animal. 🙁

I remember my dad’s rage. One time he came back home in a fit of rage and tried to slit my mom’s throat with a painting tool. I think it’s called a five in one. Anyway, he knocked her out cold and stood over her and actually put it to her throat. I stopped him with my hands, but they were shredded by that tool. I still remember this.

His rage mostly happened when he was drunk, but he was sober during that five in one incident. Dawn, was this man sober?

Does their true personality show when drunk? Is it just the beer, or their true colors? I know it was my dad’s true colors, but I’ve always wondered.

Now I’ll leave you all with a quote from a video game!

“Dangerous types tend to flaunt it. Think of poisonous plants that show off distinctive colors, but the truly dangerous never reveal themselves. The most innocuous façade often conceals the most vicious personality.”

I think that fits rather well here.

Oh, and GOOOOOO CELTICS!!! ^_^ Revenge for our fallen Patriots!

Ox Drover


She is not unable to bond, and she does have a conscience….she doesn’t have any of the other things on the PCL-R. Her “problems” with her control and abuse are limited to ONLY ME.

Sure many psychopaths are also bi-polar, ADHD and/or substance abusers as well and have had chaotic up bringings, and it is difficult to determine which came first, the chicken or the egg.

She doesn’t fit the criteria of a P at all she only does her abuse toward ME and me only when I did not “toe the family line” and lately when I did not assume my my assigned role in the family (taking over her throne as it were) of being the enabler of the family bad boy. she wanted me to enable Patrick (the family golden child) even though he had quit being golden in behavior as an adolescent and had started being the family bad boy.

The TRADITION went back generations on her mother’s side of the men being alcoholic psychopaths and abusers (mostly of their wives etc) and the women had the roles of protectors of the men and cleaning up the messes they made (enablers) and my mother’s mother was great at that role only she did not PUNISH you if did not go along with her enabling. Her mother (my great grandmother) was also the family enabler and I have court records going back into the 1840s of the male in that line being a drunken abuser of his wife and his slaves—he tied one slave woman up by her toes to beat her according to the court records…my egg donor is a bit different to her mother, in that she has picked a scape goat (me) and then when I did not go along with being the family enabler role, she tried to get my DIL to go along with that role, but she didn’t realize the DIL was a psychopath herself and would not continue that role for long, and in fact, hated her husband (my son C) and was having an affair and intended to steal from her when my murder became impossible because they couldn’t find me.

I think egg donor was desperate to find someone to fill the FAMILY ROLE of enabler. In family role theory there are appointed different roles in the family and if one person either dies or opts out, the family as a whole will try their best to pressure the person into getting back into the role but if that is impossible they will appoint another family member to assume the role which may be 180 degree reversal of the role they are already in. If the scape boat leave the family, a new one will be chosen and expected to assume that role.

When an alcoholic gets sober in these families, the family will push them back into drinking because it throws the family dynamics off. The dysfunctional family has a sort of predictability about it that the other members who are not healthy can know what to expect…if someone who has been ‘sick” gets healthy and starts behaving in a healthy manner it just throws everything off kilter and they don’t feel secure.

A dysfunctional family may be unhealthy and the various members gripe about what someone else does, but at least they have drama which is something that they can relate to.

When a woman (usually) gets a divorce from one dysfunctional man and then marries another dysfunctional man who replicates the drama rama that she had with the previous one you can realize she is not healthy.

Actually I have replicated my dysfunctional relationships with psychopaths many times in various ways, fortunately i didn’t marry one with my late husband. But I did date one after he died. Again, I had grown some over the years in that aspect and had a boundary about sexual cheating and when I found out my BF was a cheat, as well as a “secret” drinker, I dumped him. So I wasn’t totally without ANY boundaries…but in other aspects I had NO boundaries where my egg donor and my P son were concerned. My family was dysfunctional but it was STABLE until I rebelled when egg donor tried to push me into further “enablement” (I just made up that word) of my P son Patrick. I did have SOME limits and him trying to have me killed was one of them. LOL



Thank you for the explanation.

Certainly you know your family.

I didn’t understand, as I said.


“I have never been able to come up with a diagnosis that “fit her” ”

Thank you, Oxy because me too! Very hard for me to label my mother as well. I can’t tell you how many books and articles I’ve read, trying to find “the diagnosis”. I think the research & literature just doesn’t capture the reality, complexity & contradictions of the behavior. Thank goodness, I’ve finally reached a point where I no longer care about finding the exact diagnosis. Today, I accept she was a cluster of Cluster Bs.

In her latest radio interview, Donna talks about how the Cluster Bs all kinda smush together:

I also found Dr. Becker’s latest article very helpful because it draws some crisp distinctions:

Ox Drover

Yea, there is a pattern of dysfunction in these “cluster Bs” that over lap and I think the whole personality dysfunction thing is on a CONTINUUM rather than each one fitting into a square or a round hole, I think they are all Xs on a scale like a ruler.

There are also co-diagnoses as well…with many of them being bi-polar, ADHD, substance abuse etc.

Then you have to factor in the dysfunctional patterns that are LEARNED in the home/community as well as the things that “come naturally” to them because of lack of empathy and consciences.

I no longer see these “cluster Bs” as distinct diagnoses but as a continuum on which the lowest might be someone who is somewhat self centered and might eat the last piece of cake not realizing that you hadn’t had any—but the full blown P would eat all the cake he could hold and then trash the rest just so you couldn’t have any.


But, Oxy, even Ps fall across a spectrum.

In my little world, I call a S an S because I feel there is some ability for bonding and compassion. Not a whole lot, but there is some.

A P is entirely, or just about entirely, incapable of that.

That’s according to the G1S dictionary of “What Do I Know?”

Ox Drover

G1S yea, some people say that a socio-path was caused by bad environment and a psycho-path inherited most of it, but the professionals can’t agree on a name for it. LOL

I prefer Bob hare’s term Psychopath and Donna prefers Socio path because most people think all psychopaths are serial killers and that has some validity to it. The bottom line is though that there is no professional agreement on what causes it, can it be cured, or how to determine it or define it.

So I think you can have your own dictionary on it if you want to! LOL In the end, you probably know as much about it as the professionals do and in some cases know more.

I want to clarify some more about the spaths being envious of our looks because I think this is a HUGE RED FLAG, but one which appears 180 degrees backwards sometimes. In other words, it’s like a primitive myth, sometimes it looks one way and other times, it’s reversed, but the hidden meaning (the root of envy) is always the same.

As I said, my spath wanted me too look good, but only in public and in his company, where I could reflect on him. Furthermore, he didn’t like me being aware of any admiration, to receive complements or to have people hug me.

I few years into the relationshit, I noticed that when I came out of the bathroom with make up and hair done just right, I would be emotionally abused. I soon learned to take a shower and not fix myself up until after he had left the house. He couldn’t stand the idea of my looking in the mirror and getting a boost to my self-esteem.

Yet, he wanted me to look good when I was out in public. Most of the time, I thought it was to reflect on him, and that was part of it, but what he really wanted is to seed other peoples’ envy of me. He wanted everyone to hate me and I’m not sure exactly what he said to them, but I know it was important that I look good for the story to “ring true”.

So there is a connection between our stories in that the way you looked after the blow on the head, reflected on his evil being. My spath would never make such a mistake. His envy was a pressure cooker with the lid firmly sealed. He was proud of his self-control above all else. The mask never slipped.

The only way he would satisfy that rage and let some of the evil escape was through covert sabotage: poison, lies, slander, mechanical sabotage, jabs to your self-esteem, neglect etc…

Also, I think that he used prostitutes to vent his rage and take off his mask. That’s where he was free to do as he pleased and be himself. hmm…that gives me an idea….involving video tape….


My belief with regard to identifying character traits is that the experts will never solve this issue. Each human being (even the empty shells of spaths) are unique. Some spaths use sex, others use money, and still others use pity to bait, lure, and snag their source targets. But, what is consistent in all cases of sociopathy – or, those situations when someone appears to “fit the profile” of sociopathy – is that they cause intentional damage and remain unaccountable for what they’ve done. No remorse. No empathy.

My eldest son will tell you, straight up, that he harmed his ex-wives and that what he did was “wrong.” BUT, in the same breath (literally) he will give you a dozen excuses as to why his actions were not his fault. “Yeah, I did do that, but I was suffering from a siezure,” or something equally bogus.

For my own purposes, placing the spaths that I’ve either encountered or married into some neat, tidy definitive slot doesn’t alter the facts and ramifcations of their actions. They are. They simply “are.” Regardless of WHAT they are, they just “are.” They “are” to be avoided. Many of them should be incarcerated or removed from society or, at the very least, face extreme consequences for what they’ve done.

For my own purposes, I don’t give a fart in a windstorm what category they fall under. I “know” only one thing: run away, run away, run away. They are selfish, dangerous, and mean to do me (and, others) intentional, deliberate, and malicious harm.


Skylar, you hit the nail on the proverbial head. After the nuptials and incremental abaondonment began, the exspath NEVER reassured me of my physical appearance, except during the brief, frantic, and now-understood acts of sex.

The destruction of our souls is the motive, and they often succeed. I wonder how many people out there are suffering in silence because they have no means to find LoveFraud, or they’ve been so thoroughly gaslit that they agree to be institutionalized. I wonder…’s quite frightening.

it is frightening. I wish it weren’t. I wish we could intellectualize and rationalize it all away like the spaths do. Well, maybe not. I wouldn’t want to be a spath.

My spath never told me that he liked my looks. In fact, from the beginning he said I was fat. All 105 lbs of me!

So you see, that’s why I never took him seriously. From the beginning he revealed his utter stupidity. Yellow is not red, no matter how often you insist that it is. At least make your lies plausible!

One day, out of curiosity about what he might be thinking, I asked him, “Spath, do you think I’m pretty? You never tell me you like how I look.”

He said, “Honey, if I didn’t think you were pretty, you wouldn’t be my girlfriend.”

Hey! what d’ya know? The spath told the truth– meant to deceive. What he didn’t say was the utter truth, “I hate your guts, I need to envy you in order to keep hating you as much as I do.”


Skylar, the envy is the driving force behind their hatred, I think. There was a distinct pattern in the exspath’s choices of females – wealthy backgrounds. The exspath’s mother abhorred anyone who had an education or financial stability, and she would find fault with anyone who was not HER.

I believe that the exspath’s mother clearly defined what was to be hated. The fact that she had 2 children in the late-’60’s by the age of 16, dropped out of school, never earned a GED, and had to work at factories to make ends meet should have been a HUGE “Yellow” flag for me.

I was chosen strictly for my money and my “family tree.” My mother’s family had an illustrious history, and the exspath loved the idea of being associated with money and famous associations. But, he hated it as much as he loved it. He hated it even more because his mother taught him how to compare – his family history was humble and downright depressing. So, to compensate, he chose women who had money and social status.

As far as my physical appearance went, I had a very difficult time when I had benign skin cancers cut from my face – I had a face full of stitches and felt hideous. There was never, ever, EVER reassurance that my scars were only superficial and the he “loved” who I was.

It’s all so superficial, and the implications of this whole marriage are nauseating. Envy. Hatred. So much hatred….I’m so glad that I’m out.


The pain caused by all these Pd’s never ends. The N’s mom passed away – wake is today and funeral tomorrow. She was an N herself I believe. N made it clear to the children he was attending with Skank g/f from next door. My son tolerates the situation cause he loves his dad. He is 13. He has told his dad of his preference to NOT be around her – but his feelings go unheard.

Our daughter – 18 – cannot tolerate the situation. She asked that he drive her and her brother and leave g/f out of it. Not that she could stop her from being there – but at least not force them together. He is NOT hearing her either. There isn’t much left of their relationship and I fear this will finish it.

I will drive my daughter to the wake this afternoon because it is the right thing to do – but I will not go in – the in-laws wrote me off a long time ago. My son went with his dad and g/f. I did have a long talk with him this morning about giving up our own feelings and boundaries for others – like I had done with my own mom. While he loves his dad, pleasing him to the point of his own emotional and psychological discomfort is NOT to be expected.

My own feelings today are horrid –

N called his mother the “C” word and more but today he is in mourning.

N grandmother never even called my children to make peace even though she knew it was her last days

N dad never told the kids they might want to make a visit since their GM wasn’t doing well

GM was a GM in name only – but it doesn’t mean my kids don’t have feelings to deal with. She was the last GP alive.

I wish the SKANK had enough class to back off and let my kids be with their dad and family without the humiliation of her around. She KNOWS my daughter will not go near her.

Jerry Springer may want to film the whole deal :
N with his kids from the first marriage
N with his kids from our marriage
N with Skank and her crew

N’s first affair was when my stepkids were little – so I don’t even know what they might think.

I am not sure about tomorrow. It is a mass, burial of ashes with her husband’s and a repass. A lot of time for kids to be around G/F. Daughter is refusing to go under those circumstances. I can’t blame her. She won’t be able to get near her father with the G/F around – so who will help D with her own feelings . who will she ride with – sit with -? I can’t be there. I can’t put myself in that position of watching it all happen and feeling powerless. Is this OK ? Should I go for my daughter ? Does she even have to go ?


I personally think that ongoing and future research into the Cluster B personality disorders will eventually conclude that this cluster is actually a spectrum disorder of psychopathy: that antisocial pd, narcissistic pd, borderline pd and histrionic pd are just sub-clinicial forms of psychopathy, or possibly different “flavors” of psychopathy, with the underlying pathology all these disorders have in common is lack of *affective empathy* and lack of ability to feel *compassion* for others.

Psychopaths, antisocial pd and narcissistic pd, and sometimes borderline pd show an ability (sometimes an uncanny ability) to accurately “read” other people’s emotions, motivations and desires, but this is known as “cognitive empathy.” But this ability is used only in the service of manipulating and exploiting others, it would appear.

*Affective empathy* is the ability to feel another’s emotions with them, as though they are your own, and those with Cluster B disorders seem to lack that capacity or possess it in only the most atrophied, rudimentary form. They also seem to lack the capacity for *compassion*: the wish to comfort another’s pain or celebrate another’s joy, in a genuine way.
Although most of the narcissistic pd and borderline pd individuals I’ve known seem to be able to *mimic* these behaviors, as I’ve read that sociopaths/psychopaths can do, in the long run the behaviors are shallow and do not reflect genuine concern.

More research, more studies, more, more more are needed.
I wish the study of psychopathy and the Cluster B disorders could be given massive funding and priority.

I agree that the negative emotions of envy, jealousy, rage, revenge, hate and a sense of entitlement fuel domestic violence, as well, in these individuals.


I agree with you that cluster b’s are the same with the difference being the degree of denial and suppressed emotions. In other words, it all depends on which part of the ability to feel is damaged or short circuited.
This article is interesting because about halfway down it mentions Phineas Gage, the famous case of the man who got a steel pipe rammed into his frontal lobe. And he became a jerk.
This is called Pseudopsychopathy.

He was transformed by this accident from a responsible railroad manager to an impulsive, irresponsible, sexually promiscuous, verbally abusive individual (Harlow, 1848). Many of Gage’s symptoms are consistent with those classically associated with psychopathy.

Subsequent studies of patients with prefrontal lobe damage suggest that the orbital frontal cortex plays a role in mediating some behaviors related to psychopathy (Blumer and Benson, 1975; Damasio, 1994). Damage to the orbital frontal cortex leads to a condition termed ’pseudopsychopathy’ (Blumer and Benson, 1975) or ’acquired sociopathic personality’ (Damasio, 1994) characterized by problems with reactive aggression, motivation, empathy, planning and organization, impulsivity, irresponsibility, insight, and behavioral inhibition (Malloy et al., 1993; Stuss et al., 1983). In some cases, patients may become prone to grandiosity (Blumer and Benson, 1975) and confabulation (Malloy et al., 1993; Schnider, 2001). …

However, the ’pseudopsychopathy’ or ’acquired sociopathy’ model does not appear to fully account for the constellation of symptoms observed in psychopathy. For example, patients with orbital frontal damage rarely show instrumental or goal-directed aggression a cardinal feature of psychopathy (Blair, 2001; Hare, 1993). Orbital frontal patients also do not typically exhibit the callousness commonly observed in psychopathic individuals. Similarly, patients with ’acquired sociopathy’, unlike psychopathic individuals, are characterized by lack of motivation, hoarding behavior, mood disturbances, incontinence, and failure or inability to make long-term plans (Blumer and Benson, 1975). Psychopathic individuals, on the other hand, often enjoy making grandiose life plans they just fail to follow through with them.

I also believe that no amount of money is too much to devote to this disorder. The cost of not addressing it is too high and the benefits of addressing it would be off the charts.


Hey, Hey, Skylar,
Back off the Gages!!!!


Truthspeak, Skylar

My LESSON (ex-spath) did the same thing to me. Never ever complimented me on my appearance or gave me reassurance that way.

He’d say “I like your bracelet” or something like that, but never that he thought I was pretty or beautiful.

I think it was all subtle ways to trim away our self esteem.



I am sorry all of this drama is going on. I recommend you just BE THERE for your children, and don’t force them to go anywhere. Anything they do is their choice. Don’t say anything bad about their father or his family. They will remember you for this.




Ana, I don’t follow your comment. I know it wasn’t addressed to me, but ??


Sorry, it was a private joke made public. Skylar know’s I’m just kidding with her.

Oh, sorry didn’t mean to get personal
you’ve got me ROTFLMAO, Now I can’t be held responsible for anything I do or type!


LOL! Well, lets see what happens next….;)

They are obsessed with shallow things like money and appearances because that ALL THERE IS for them. No feelings, no emotions, no deeper meaning. And they are constantly comparing quantities: who has more money and who gets more attention.


skylar: your post made me laugh. You said: “…and they are constantly comparing quantities: who has more money and who gets more attention.” Absolutely. I so agree with that.

They keep a listing and in that listing, they keep track of who has what and which is more beneficial to them. That is usually where they end up and if they are really talented, they have five, six, seven or eight, all at the same time. They get ‘dropped off’ the list by the degree of resistance they show. If you are not compliant, then they spin them all against one another. “IT” was trying to include me in that spin and that’s when I jumped ship. If you don’t jump ship, you will end up leaving, eventually, by being tortured, enough, sooner or later…either way, they end up ‘winning’, so they think. ahahahaha Jokes on them.

Oh yes, we have seen that same ugliness…I know…
Amazing there are actually people like this among us…
It takes a while to recognize their intentions but it eventually comes….that peeling off of the mask…


Dupey, my sister has that kind of mental list.
I’ve found that there are many more out there like her than I ever imagined. It’s sad. I can’t imagine what it must feel like to be so shallow.


skylar: I am sorry. 🙁
Yes, there are more out there than anyone could imagine. And, as I pulled that mask off, I was told: “Go on and tell anyone you want. They will never believe you. You are insane.” Oh yes…many more just like that out there. It’s real sad.

I don’t want to know what it feels like to be that shallow, skylar. I am finished trying to understand it. I just want my life back now and am taking it. Absolutely. It was one month ago today that I went NC for the last time. But it has only been a few days since there has been no stalking. Imagine that. For the first time in just about ten years now, I absolutely have peace and quiet. I must have gotten my point across this last time.

But, where’s hens? There is a full, new moon tonight, so who knows what is going to happen because of that?!!! 🙂


Glad to see you posting and happy! I like reading your postsssss.

I’m so happy you are NC with IT. I can tell that you sound sooo much better. Keep up the good example for us all.


Hi Ana: Thank you so much for your great feedback. You make me feel better by saying you can hear the change…

I am so happy that I have finally gotten this ugliness out of my life. I have absolutely no regrets about putting it in the past.

Thanks for the inspiration….
You are such a dear girl….xxoo


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