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By | August 7, 2009 175 Comments

Empty, bored chameleons

Like many of you, I am very grateful for a few friends who acted as sounding boards as I processed my experience with a sociopath. The best talks have been with my exercise partner who is also a former Federal agent. About 2 years ago on one of our walks we discussed what it must be like to be inside the skin of a sociopath. Both of us tried to imagine what their inner world is like.

On that walk we both connected with ourselves and each other in a way we hadn’t before. The connection happened as we reflected on what it must be like to live a life without love. I realized that my sense of myself as a continuous person over time is based on the people I love and the values I have a passion for. Everywhere I go I carry with me a sense of duty, love and connection to my children and other loved ones. My dearest ones are always inside me. The fulfilling of duty to them gives life purpose and direction.

According to Dr. Cleckley, the first psychiatrist to really study sociopaths, the disorder produces an incapacity for love that is “complete”. Furthermore Dr. Cleckley states in his book, The Mask of Sanity that even those who have an “incomplete manifestation” of the disorder completely lack the capacity for love.

Without love to give themselves a sense of feeling and purpose, sociopaths are prone to boredom. They have to keep filling their lives with excitement and also abuse substances to fill the gap.

Sociopaths live in the moment because they lack the loving human connections that give everyone else a sense of continuity of person and purpose.

Sociopaths also have no true self because instead of being based on loving connections, their sense of themselves is based on who they can dominate in the moment. If yesterday they had to assume a certain identity to get over on person A, today they may have to assume another identity to get over on person B. This assumption of identities is not a problem for them because the goal is not loving or meaningful connectedness. The goal is the pleasure of the get over. They will become what they must to accomplish that goal.

I’ve been struggling over whether or not to include a section on “identity” in my next book. I am trying not to get too psychologically technical. But it might be helpful for victims and family members to reflect on identity and understand why sociopaths lack a stable sense of self. I am interested in your thoughts about that.

Since some of you indicated you wanted me to tackle an explanation of “borderline personality”. I’ve been reading on the issue of identity. On page 213 of “Borderline Conditions and Pathological Narcissism” psychoanalyst Dr. Otto Kernberg says the following:

The normal integrated self and its related integrated conceptions of others guarantee a sense of continuity throughout time and under varying circumstances. They also guarantee a sense of belonging to a network of human relations that makes life meaningful, and they guarantee the ordinary “self feeling” we take for granted”¦

He also says that absent loving connections:

”¦ pathological subjective experiences of a painful and disturbing nature develop. Among these experiences predominates a sense of emptiness and futility of life, chronic restlessness and boredom..In typical cases, it is as if this emptiness were their basic modality of subjective experience from which they attempt to escape by engagement in many activities or in frantic social interactions, by the ingestion of drugs or alcohol or by attempts to obtain instinctual gratifications through sex, aggression, food or compulsive activities”¦

I hope you will spend what is left of summer reflecting on your own loving connections. As you contemplate the meaning of these connections and their importance to your sense of who you are, consider your own “self-feeling”. Realize that you have yourself to give yourself in intimacy to another either friend, family or lover, while the sociopath you know has nothing to give anyone.


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I’d add anxious for the next kick. They are hollow. I mean of course they are, no one can do what they do and possess a soul.

I have seen two at play, from a distance now, for awhile and it is truly strange to see how they just morph into whatever suits the situation. And how their personality disorder (evilness) is physically manifested in their gait, speech and behavior.

I swear I think I can spot one pretty quick now given some history and exposure to their wiles. I don’t think anyone on here with the education we have recvd. here and experientially would fail to see through one now.

This entry is interesting becuase what it describes is almost a paper-doll. How many would now confuse a paper-doll for human?

But they did lure us before, I think it’s because we could not imagine and wanted so to believe.

Yes, there’s tons of signs but only a few that stand out scream, like: charm, need for power and control, lack of empathy.

Looking back I can see so much I IGNORED, didn’t want to believe.

Heck, the multiple marriages was ONE huge clue couple that with inappropriate remarks from the start….that’s enough to run.

Victims tend to tolerate a lot, when others leave- we stay.

I am running a survey right now, and already see patterns in victims.
It’s here:
http://www.eSurveysPro.com/Survey.aspx?id=30d0cae9-b0c4-4858-b434-62a0961d3e54

PInow

Despite all my education, despite all the blogs I’ve read, and despite my theoretical knowledge, I am not so sure I’d be able to spot the red flags. There are over 60(? not sure, but the number came to me and I can look it up if you insist ) types of borderline personality disorder traits. I am not sure how many “types” of psychopaths there are. Some are so keen on their environment, they can hide pretty easily. Holywatersalt, how is this: a man you are with asks you to wait while he pushes a stranger’s car out of a ditch. He feeds wild birds, runs over to help with groceries, puts gas in your car, shares your passion for helping others, educates you on his beliefs about religion and G-d. Irons your clothes, makes your breakfast, encourages you to visit with your friends, reminds you to take care of your health, values your opinion and brings you flowers. Sounds pretty good, doesn’t it?
Meet my P. Upon closer consideration, you learn that the birds only got fed once, that the clothes only got ironed when you were watching, that the groceries were brought in while a neighbor was looking on, that as soon as you return from a visit with a friend, you’d come upon an ice cold greeting and quickly realize that the friend was an ass, and did all the things wrong and did not care for you any, while he P, was there, minding his own business, looking after “your interests” while also making sure that you are friend-less and totally clue-less about the “Jakyl and Hyde” life he’s having. Oh, and medical care? “you’ll be just fine, it isn’t like AIDS (after sharing an STD)
Should I now be looking for a crude angry dude that displays his character rather than hide it? because everyone I meet who is nice, triggers all sorts of red flags. I am especially ticked off by ANY complements and any attention seeking.
That life “in the moment” was what we, the victims, captured. Then, we created a belief system to sustain that moment. “BUT HE DID FEED THE BIRDS”… – well, now I have to realize that although the birds got fed once, I got *&$^*# over it each and every time. I filled in the blanks that in my mind were sustainable and believable based on what I once observed. He did not even try to fit the “Mold” he created anymore. It was there, and I worked very hard on filling it for him: when I put the gas in the car, when I dragged the groceries, when I ironed the clothes and worked to bring money home.

PInow

Just took your survey. Hopes it helps us all.
I only saw the nice giving spirit who has been through a lot and finally met his true match. The two of us shared so much in common, we could talk for hours on end. (it was me sharing with me, I should have just gotten a mirror)

Ox Drover

Dear PINow,

I hear your pain, sweetie! And yes, we DO “fill in the blanks” like a life-long game of WHEEL OF FORTUNE.

We fill in “relation-shi-P” when it should be relation-shi-T” (thanks for who ever posted that first, it is GREAT!!!)

We see one or two “good things” and then we assign a “coda” to him as ALL good, but we see 100 bad things and we don’t change the “coda.”

Some one months ago posted an analogy that went like this, and I loved it. “He was a GREAT guy, loving and caring, and good, EXCEPT WHEN HE WAS ROBBING BANKS.” Yea, RIGHT!!! NOT!!!

All of us make mistakes and “act out” to some degree from time to time in ways we shouldn’t, but when someone makes a PATTERN of BAD BEHAVIOR, etc. RED FLAG TIME!!!!

It is difficult even now, as good a “P-DAR” as I have now, for me to catch one on the fly every time. I am sure there are still a few lurking out there in the edges of my relationships that I hven’t yet recognized, but what I DO DO is I catagorize people by levels of TRUST.

Inside my INNERMOST CIRCLE are my sons and a few very close friends. 99.99999% trust for these people. Everything I am or have is theirs for the asking. There isn’t anyting about me that they don’t know, or that I wouldn’t tell them. They are and have been supportive of me.

Just outside of that, but still close is my INNER Circle, and those people are people that I pretty well trust, they have enver betrayed me, told a lie that I have caught them in, they have been honest with me and appear to be honest with others, and I have observed them for quite some time. NONE of these are NEW acquaintences. I might loan them a hundred bucks if the story was good. If they paid it back they would remain in this circle. If not, they are OUT forever. I also might GIVE them a hundred bucks if they were in need. I might even loan them a larger amount if I was assured of collateral. I would help them out in any way I could if the NEED was real. They know quite a bit about me, but there are some things I might not feel comfortable telling them. I would give them a key to my house and exchange dog sitting chores with them.

MODERATE CIRCLE OF TRUST…these are people that I know fairly causally, and have not observed any bad behavior but haven’t been around them a lot, so haven’t had a great deal of opportunity to observe them under a varied number of times. So far all I have seen is positive. I wouldn’t loan them money though of any consequence. I might GIVE them something if they needed it and I could spare it. They know the “outer” me, not my innermost feelings, emotions or fears. I would not give them a key to my house.

OUTER CIRCLE: this is where NEW oeople go, I don’t distrust them, but don’t trust them either. I watch them pretty carefully for signs of any dishonesty with me or others, or any other red flags. They may have potential to become closer friends, but it will take time and caution before I will trust them more. I wouldn’t loan them a dime or leave them in my house if I wasn’t there.

CIRCLE OF DISTRUST: This is the purgatory of my life for those that have shown RED FLAGS or abusive behavior, have lied to me or to others, stolen, shown dishonest, abusive behavior to anyone or any thing, etc. There is NO getting out of this purgatory as far as I am concerned, there is no amount of “fake repentence” or whining or crying that will EVER make me trust these people.

Under certain circumsances I may have to interact with them, but it will be “cool politeness” and I will never SEEK to be around them.

No contact for all that it is remotely possible for me to be NC with. ANY ONE at ANY LEVEL of trust can SINK to the OUTER LIMITS by telling a lie or showing any kind of abusive or manipulative behavior. In fact, several people that I rated as “good friends” in the past have entered this level this past year and I do not grieve for their loss any more. I am glad they are GONE.

This is a new way of thinking for me, but one I am conceptualizing into a “code of life” for me. I set limits with people and expect them to RESPECT ME. Even my sons know the boundaries I have set, and they respect those boundaries. I respect theirs. We treat each other with respect and love and care. We do things for and with each other because we CARE about each other. But even my sons don’t get a “free ride” on my back—they put their shoulder into harness and we PULL TOGETHER.

PInow

Wow, Oxy, you sure put a lot of thought into this. I am by nature a very trusting person. I treat others as I want to be treated, and I am very forgiving (just as I want to be forgiven). So, that’s made me a prime target for use, abuse, and misuse. Generally, I’ve written the patty little things off, realizing that some will take the opportunities presented to them. I sigh and go on with my life, because I generally am in a position of power and hope that “they” perhaps, will let others slide when others need help. So, I am understanding and kind, though I can be harsh and direct too, when transgressed at a personal level. What was done unto me was an ultimate betrayal. Someone told me here, that I “slept with an enemy”. I did. And – yet, I feel so vulnerable still,not able to understand who is to be trusted and who is not. I don’t want to kill within me my ability to trust others, but I do seek to protect my spirit, that will never be the same.

Ox Drover

Dear PINow,

The problem with being “caring” and “giving” people and “doing unto others as you would they do unto you” is that WE TAKE IT TO EXCESS.

I was raised a “Christian” by my egg donor who PRETENDED to be a Christian, but sitting in a church pew didn’t make her a christian any more than it would have made her a hen if she sat in the chicken house. Christianity (or any other religion or spiritual belief system is an INNER FEELING, NOT an exterior fake display.

I never felt comfortable with HER definition of “forgiveness” though she “backed it up with the Bible” but just like anything, the BIBLE CAN BE TWISTED by taking things out of context and “prove” anything….doesn’t make it right though.

I started discussing forgiveness, and then realized HER DEFINITION and mine were NOT the same, then I began to investigate what other TWISTED DEFINITONS I ahd absorbed from her without EVER questioning them.

I realized that forgiveness ( ACCORDING to my interpretation of the Bible NOW) means to get the BITTERNESS out of your heart toward them. jesus said “let not the sun go down upon your wrath.” Well, I thought wrath=angry, but it is more than just MAD, it is wishing vengence and hatred, it is cultivated and held inside like a cancer.

Jesus was ANGRY, and there is no sin in being angry for good cause, He said “be ye angry and sin not.” So just being angry isn’t a bad thing, but acting a fool BECAUSE you are angry may be.

Forgive=get the bitterness out of your heart, get the wrath out of your soul, but it does NOT mean ‘PRETEND IT NEVER HAPPENED AND TRUST THEM AGAIN.”\

Read the story of Joseph whose brothers were going to kill him because they were jealous and then sold him instead. He had FORGIVEN his brothers when they showed up 20+ years later, but he still DIDN’T TRUST THEM until he had TESTED them and saw what kind of men they had become, that they were truly sorry for the pain they had caused their father by pretending to find his coat covered in blood and told their father a wild animal must ahve kileld him. They were no longer those jealous nasty men, but had now become willing to sacrifice their own lives to save their brother Benjamin in order not to grieve their father more. THEN and ONLY then did Joseph reveal himself as their brother.

Trust should not be GIVEN in my opinion, but EARNED. Trusting everyone until they HURT you is asking, in my opinion, to be duped and taken in by a psychopath, that is what got me in trouble to start with, I WANTED TO BELIEVE GOOD ABOUT PEOPLE and I excused RED FLAGS to my own detriment. Yes, indeed I have THOUGHT LONG AND HARD, examined MY PART in this, what made me VULNERABLE. WHAT MADE ME ALLOW this? I was so afraid of hurting someone’s feelings, and had been told (and belileved) if I couldn’t “‘PRETEND IT NEVER HAPPENED” even though these people didn’t show any sign of repentence and repeated their behavior over and over, that I would go to hell. But my religious beliefs have changed, I am now a Christian and have a loving spiritual father, rather than a psychopathic old man I dare not offend or he will zap me to hell.

I have thought about the red flags as well, and actually set down and thought about my friends and others in my life, and divided the sheep from the goats as the Bible would say. Like Santa Claus too, I know whose been good adn I know whose been bad and I am not bringing my GIFTS of trust and friendship to those who have been “bad.”

There is a lot of good wisdom in how to be a better person in the Bible even for people who are non-believers. so much about how people should treat each other. How we should treat OURSELVES. NO where however does it postulate we should allow ourselves to be abused. Even Jesus and St. Paul advised that if you try to talk to a “brother” and he will not listen, get witnesses and if that doesn’t work, go to the church (community) and if that doesn’t work, NO CONTACT, (in effect) it actually says treat them like a heathern and don’t even eat with them. If that iisn’t advising NO CONTACT I don’t know what is!

EAch of us have our own views of scripture or philosophy and I am not trying to foist mine on you, but every religion that I know of, the sacred writings advise care and compassion, not brutality. None of them, however, advise us to sit still for abuse if we can avoid it—at the very least RUN and HIDE.

Tilly

I believe forgiveness is to “give up” the hatred, resentment, bitterness and gruge one has against the perpetrator. To be capable of really doing this is a huge task when the abuse is shocking. Understanding why they did it has nothing to do with forgiveness. Being able to LET GO AS IF IT NEVER HAPPENED TO YOU (WHILST REMAINING NO CONTACT IF IT IS A CLUSTER B) and taking responsibility for your part in it and then DOING SOMETHING ABOUT THAT PART OF YOU SO IT DOESN’T HAPPEN AGAIN is true FORGIVENESS. To “give for”, to “let go” all of this must be embraced and really practised fully before one can say they have forgiven.
I have been abused all my life. I used to believe I had forgiven the abusers because:
I believed that the reason they were like they were, was because they had been abused (usually as a child) like I had. WRONG!!
I never abused my 3 children. Not by omission or commission. One of my children is a total psychopath by genetics. The other one I still don’t know if he is a cluster B or not. The youngest escaped.
MY second last sociopath/p partner took everything I owned except my children. I mean everything physically and metaphorically including my dignity, sanity and desire to live. I was as good as dead.
Five years later when I had begun my recovery and was reading Victor Frankles “Mans search for Meaning” in walked the next sociopath/psychopath partner.
He was everything PINOW described in her post at the top of the page. He was quoting out of Victors book to me three times a day, bringing flowers, he couldn’t do enough for me. He was “too good to be true’. He “understood me totally” and “EXACTLY THE SAME THING HAD HAPPENED TO HIM IN HIS LAST RELATIONSHIP”. I fell for it hook line and sinker. EVEN after 50 years of the same type of abuse. Simply because i did not have the knowledge I now have found at LF.
Have I forgiven?
No, not all of them and certainly not myself.
The ones I have forgiven are the ones that are incapable of hurting me anymore, whether i were to see them or not. It is like seeing an aligator slithering past, throw it some bait in the opposite direction or ignore it and it slides on without noticing me and i remain unmoved by it.
But the ones that are still hurting me now (by the disgusting living arrangements i now have to endure, the “Victor Frankl”), no I have not forgiven them. I have not forgiven my parents because, even though i have no contact with them, they are still hurting me through my youngest son and oldest daughter.
I have not forgiven many of them because they are still out there murdering and destroying people and there is nothing (at this stage) that I can do about it.
But I try to forgive them. I take responsibility for my part in it. I protect myself from them. I go no contact and watch for red flags.
But I havn’t let go to the point where I never think about it as if it never happened…yet.

Stayingsane

I have changed. I think I feel more equipped to deal with the real world, actually less afraid than ever (He forced me into travelling alone, tracking him down, talking with solicitor, talking to and visiting his family and neighbours, driving alone in a strange country, not having the language, putting up with hostile receptions, handling business, negotiating deals) I have grown up because of what he put me through…and feel I could handle quite complex and dubious situations easily because he forced me to go with my gut in the end and once I did everything was bang on….so much is coming my way in the way of job offers, friends and while I couldn’t date anyone I do feel incredibly strong because of him, yes was the catalyst for growth…so I thank him for that, he has not changed at all…I had no impact on him whatsoever!!!

Ox Drover

Dear Tilly,

It is hard to forgive WHILE it is happening…that is why NC is so good because it keeps us from getting FRESH injuries.

In your case you are still feeling fresh injures from your P-DNA donors and your P-daughter and them together attacking your one good and caring son. I am feeling FRESH attacks because my egg donor is sending money to my attacker so he can have more resources.

I can’t say I have 100% (it comes back at times and I have to fight it down) let go of the past abuse (by way of forgiveness) but I do think I am well on the way to it, getting that bitterness out of my heart and the wrath (long-term ugly vengeful anger) I just ahve to guard myself so it wont’ come back into “full flower.”

Forgiving MYSELF was the hardest part for me Tilly, so back and do a search for the article I wrote here on LF on that. I think it is titled “Forgiving ourselves for being human.”

It was always easier to forgive others (pretend it didn’t happen) than to forgive myself. Learning to forgive myself was so hard, but it turned a corner for me in my healing that had been “dammed up” behind it.

Stayingsane, the abuse experience CAN be a catalyst for growth for sure, or it can be the end of us, it is up to us what it becomes in the end. I think that LF has helped these experiences for me become that catalyst for MY OWN GOOD. I thank God for donna and this site! And for all of you!!!!

slimone

Dr. Leedom,

I have read through this about 5 times, and find myself particularly inspired by this topic of healthy attachment and identity.

As a survivor of childhood abuse the development of a personal identity separate from ‘victim’, with healthy attachment to others, has been hard won (and has made me a sitting duck, off and on, to predatory types). Much as I hate that it is true the injuries to my early needs for affirmation and cherishment made it difficult for me to trust, and form loving connections. Therefore having a sense of self/identity was intermittent, and I suffered terrible alienation and loneliness for many years. Actually very much as you describe the personality disorderd.

I believe having had this kind of childhood made me feel compassion for the n/p types, as I believed I understood what it felt like to be them. And I think, in some ways, I do. But for me, for whatever reasons, true personhood was possible. For them, not.

This understanding about what makes each one of us have a sense of ourselves as we exist over time provides me a real explanation for the groundedness I have been slowly finding, but which was significantly derailed by this last experience with an N/P. The new abusive injury ended up taking me back to earlier times, as if my hard earned connections and sense of self had never happened at all. I have found myself, through my N experience, feeling that same disconnection/boredom/futility. Funny that being involved with one of these folks enamored the same temporary pathology in me, in the retriggering of my childhood loss and emptiness.

Part of my recovery has been the fear that I will not feel more fully connected to others again, and may never reconnect fully with MY OWN self. But I realized, reading this article, that it has been happening.

That even though my feelings of connection may be a bit ‘numbed’ by my experience, they are slowly reappearing. My batteries are slowly recharging, and I have more energy to resume the loving ‘duty’ to my friends/family, and again join in the ‘Conga line’ of life.

Thank-you for this thoughtful article.

Slim

neveragain

I agree with the inner emptiness, Dr. Leedom. THe narcissiopath I was involved with had a high IQ and SOME insights to his behavior, but actually rather limited. But he did complain of feeling empty inside.

When I said “ok, you win (we reconnected after dating in high school, 40 years later, after intermittent low level stalking), you are a mega millionaire, a doctor, you have kids, etc” (a statement that reflected that I was already giving up my values and buying into his) and he said “yeah, but you have passion”. I do have passion for my work, which is what I think he was referring to.

He also said he needed my laughter. He managed to squeeze all the laughter out of me.

He referred to returning to one of his multimillion dollar homes after an trip away as “returning to the nothingness I call home”.

He called me once as a teen, saying he was about to kill himself. That was part of the emptiness inside too.

He can’t stand to be alone, drinks then. Keeps up an incredible pace with vacation trips. No down time.

Also looking for the next “bragging rights” accomplishment too, like a marathon or whatever.

You are so right that they live in the moment and just want to control or dominate openly or subversively the person they are with, even if it means cutting off their nose to spite their face. All that matters is that they win.

neveragain

slimone
What you wrote really resonated with with me.

“The new abusive injury ended up taking me back to earlier times, as if my hard earned connections and sense of self had never happened at all. I have found myself, through my N experience, feeling that same disconnection/boredom/futility. Funny that being involved with one of these folks enamored the same temporary pathology in me, in the retriggering of my childhood loss and emptiness.”

Man, can I relate. Perfect, succinct description of what happened to me. I am back to my hard earned connections now. What helped tremendously was surrounding myself with people who share the values and connectiveness I had established. They reminded me of who I am.

It is almost scary how much the naricissiopath hooked me into his world view, I sort of alluded to that in my previous post. I said to my therapist once, I didn’t know life was a monopoly game…I didn’t know that was the game we were playing! THat was part of me being hooked into his world view. And in that game I felt horribly empty. I was so glad to climb back out of that world view. SO THANKFUL.

Now life again has meaning. And it is feeling like I make a difference in alleviating the needless suffering of others that makes me feel alive, and feeling connected to those I love, and to nature.

neveragain

Slimone:

Your writing is so insightful…maybe you should do a book!

amay61

I am brand new to all of this, but I want to thank LF and especially OxDrover for saving my life. I got blindsided in June by the most charming and sexually attractive (aggressive – he really got my attention) man I had ever met. After only 2 days of a very intense relationship, he began to demand money. I thank God for His mercy that this man’s character was revealed so early on. I ran to the internet to try to figure out what in the world had just happened to me. ‘That’s when I ran into LF and got the education of my life. Thank you, Thank you, thank you. You have saved me. I need to get over my hormonal chemical response to this man but with this website’s help, I WILL do it.

slimone

JAH,

Jeepers! That is a really nice complement. Thank-you so much!

I am so happy that your loving connections are helping bring you back to yourself. And that you have the internal resources to once again reach out and give to others. Coming out of the emptiness, from being caught up in the false logic of the pathoworldview, is amazing! I too am thankful to be back in my own mind and body. It was like I was taken over by an alien, and woke to find myself starved and near dead from it’s misuse of me.

I have chronically doubted my connectedness to others, nature, and my importance in others lives. Thankfully my circle of friends and family are generous with their expressions of love and gratitude for me. And this site, with loving people, such as yourself, have helped me ‘refuel’, and once again have the resources so that I can more fully participate in the give and take of healthy relating.

Love to you…and all

slimone

amay61,

SO good to hear you interrupted the ‘seduction’ of this creature early on!!!!! Welcome to LF. This place is the real deal.

ANewLily

Amay61. Your eyes were opened after just 2-3 months??? That’s phenomenal. You must be a very strong and wise woman.

Glad to have you here!! But, sorry you had to encounter even such a brief experience to give you qualitifcations for membership!

The getting over the intense emotions you felt for him may be the hardest to overcome. But as other posters attest, it can be done!

Tilly

Amay61:
Stay here on LF, “sexually because “sexuallyattractive, aggressive, unavailable abusive men “will eventually elicit a red flag sign from you instead of the hormonal chemical response you have now. You got it from your childhood. Like me.

Tilly

E>G> Abuse = attention, must be love.

super chic

I can relate to that!!

hens

Slimone – your above post reached down into my soul and pulled out something that has always lingered there. You hit a nerve. [ But for me, for whatever reason true personhood was possible. But for them. Not.] I question myself all the time . what is my disorder? Why do I feel so different? But YES I have true personhood. I have always felt as I am a good person, not bad like the abusive people in my life. I am a true person, with a heart and a conscience and alway’s, all my life, keeping my self esteem and selfworth UP has been a day to day struggle. When I get to feeling like a true person, I volunteer to let another abuser knock me down. That will never happen again. I have true personhood~~!!! thank you for your awesome post..

Tilly

But we don’t do it anymore shabbychic! TOWANDA!

libelle

Dear Slimone, dear JAH, thank you so much for your posts.

I could so relate to it! It helped me tremendously sorting out the confusion after I read about “inverted narcissist” by Sam Vankning (very dangerous man I think, I will NOT READ ANYTHING ANYMORE BY HIM) some time ago, and I found myself there described to the T, but also I knew it was NOT TRUE that I was so deranged and that there was NO HOPE FOR ME as he stated. I did not find an answer to solve this problem. Thanks to you and Dr Leedom’s article I could relate and find a satisfying solution/explanation for this problem.

Dear Amay61, welcome! Sorry that you “qualify”, and the first time is the toughest. As others said: The truth will set you free, but first it pi***s you off”. Stay here, learn and read, and post if you have the urge to contact him, NC (No contact)is THE most important to healing/detoxifying the soul. (((Hugs)))

amay61

Thanks, again! Just reading your responses made me cry this morning. I haven’t really done that yet. The urges to contact him are overwhelming! I have deleted his number (finally) from my cell phone, so at least that oh-so -easy method is gone! Of course, I know where he works, his church (HA!) etc. Coming here to post is definitely the better choice.

Having been starved of intimacy, affection etc. in a “safe” but dead 29 year marriage, the hormones went bezerk! My husband was able to sexually ignore me 10 years at a time (while living in the same house).

Anyway, glad I’m here. Thanks for the acceptance.

neveragain

amay61…stay strong!

blindsided31

amay61
Wow, your story sounds somewhat like mine.

I ,too, am in a 20 + year “dead” marriage to a man I no longer love who has multiple physical and emotional issues.

I also was seduced by the most charming, attractive(married) man I ever met who, for 18 months, made me think he was my best friend, my forever friend— only to have him dump me by telling me he does not love me. Only after that day when I was “blindsided” did I discover he had scored with his next victim the very day he told me he didn’t love me. Like this post says, he, like all Ss, is pretty much always bored, and therefore must contantly be looking for a new thrill (or in my case victim).

At least my S never wanted money, all he got was my heart. I loved him so much, relied on him so much, and was so shocked when he dumped me that now, after a year of the dumping (8/31/08) I am still working on recovery

At this point, it is 8 weeks of renewed “no contact”. He has a knack of calling me on hurtful days (my birthday; anniversary of a trip we took) to make sure I know he “still” does not love me. The last call was 8 weeks ago. Like I told hecates path and justabouthealed, this time (for the first time) I told him I would not be contacting him and told him not to contact me.- and so far I am succeeding.

NC is still very hard. I still cry often ( twice today) and miss him so so much. But I do know that any renewed contact will just give him the opportunity to hurt me again (while he constantly says “I don’t want to hurt you any more”).

Keep up the good work of NC and continue to look here for support from people who know exactly what you are going through.

ANewLily

amay61 and blindsided,

My heart just bleeds for both of you — victims of narcissiopaths who were just using you for their own pleasure and egos. Yet, playing with your deep emotions and hopes and leaving you in despair.

I have no idea if you are like any of the “victims” that my EX captured, used, and trashed when the new one came along — all while telling ME how much I was loved (in words anyway) and telling me I was his best friend, complementing me on how well I understood him — all lies, come to find out. I was just his “public image wife” to cover his disorder and to allow him “permission” to victimize other women behind my back.

I’ll never know the answers to my unansered questions about his strange behavior — except that he is disordered — but I don’t even care any more. I only care DEEPLY for the hurt he caused other women who believed his lies.

My prayers are with you both!!!

blindsided31

ANewLily
I am so sorry too, because I knew I was doing something that could potentially be discovered by his wife and hurt her terribly- like you have been hurt.

Of course, he had a “pity” story during the seduction phase. His wife had various “health problems” with the implication that she was too absorbed in her illnesses to pay attention to him. He was so good, so charming, so convincing that he got me to do something I never dreamed I would do- I was the biggest goody two shoes in the world prior to his coming into my life.

I often wonder if his wife has any idea what is going on. I’m sure I wasn’t the first and the woman that came after me won’t be the last. To the best of my knowledge, up to the time he dumped me, his wife did not have any idea. I often wonder if I should tell her (if only to warn her about possible STDs)- I think that would be the best way to get back at him. But I have not, I do not want to be the one to give the news that would cause another person such agony. I believe he treats her just as your husband treated you- he is super nice to her- the “perfect husband” in a perfect house- good show for friends, family, and neighbors.

Of couse she must know something is not right even if she does not label it sociopathy-(they have been married about 19 years.) I met him on the job (where I have worked for 30 years)- he is 59 now and has told me of many jobs (and many odd endings of jobs- none of which were his fault at all, of course). Now he, after 3 years, has lost this job in a very weird way- a state job that is very hard to lose unless you do something very bad, unethical etc.(but just the kind of thing SPs can’t help but eventually do). I’ve been told he has had to take a job far away with a long, arduous commute- at probably a lower salary. But he is so good and so convincing he may have her convinced that he was a victim of a mean boss etc.

And if she knew all that he was doing behind her back, I’m not sure his wife would leave him. Even though I have read on this blog of women that had no idea of what the SP husband was doing, I still somehow wonder if she has some idea but just blocks it out?

Sadly, the SPs leave a trail of wives; friends; lovers etc. and feel no guilt at all about any of it.

Tilly

I too studies Sam Vankning for a couple of years before I ended up with my p dentist boyfriend! Huh! lotagood it did me (not!)

ErinBrock

I found Sam’s writings to be very interesting. It was my first look into Narcissism.
Then I read the writings about him being a Narcissist and looked at his writings from a different perspective……
I think if we sort out his motives for writing and understand his ‘mindset’, it’s interesting to walk his journey as he writes it.
I definately could see my ex NS in his writings and it opened my eyes and catapulted me to the sociopath investigations, along with a therapist.
He has an immense amount of info on the web, and it’s impossible to miss him……of course, this serves him well…..an obvious motive……
But I did learn a lot from reading his info and perspectives.
Interesting.
It was my beginning of my ‘opening my eyes’!
I have since graduated…..
🙂
XXOO

ANewLily

Dearest blindsided,

No, I did not learn of the infidelities until after I left. I did file for divorce (from 1800 miles away) after he admitted them (7 of them) but the main reason for divorce was CONTROL and because he tried to kill me! Even sold our house so I COULDN’T come back to be near our adult children and many grandchildren!

And no, any knowledge of infidelities wouldn’t have bothered me (much) anyway because there were too many other covert signs and patterns that I KNEW something was very wrong with him! In fact, I feel sure he finally admitted to the infidelities to try to hurt me! (I laughed) He sure didn’t admit them to clear his conscience. He didn’t have one! After 46.5 years with him I KNEW that!

As for not leaving him, I tried several times and COULDN’T. I was securely TRAPPED — he had made sure of that! There was one time I almost made it — but that attempt failed, too. It was a true MIRACLE that I made it out 7 years ago!! Praise the Lord for His Hand in it!

My advice to you is to focus on your own healing and accept that you were duped by an expert conman. HIS problem, not yours! Above all, forgive yourself!

I certainly have forgiven all my Ex’s victims. I did find out (because she told me) that one of his victims early on was our gorgeous and darling babysitter. (I suspected nothing == probably because I was dealing with the periodic batterings.)
We both laughed (she has now been happily married for years) when she said his “catch” was how *I* didn’t understand him! She knew me and doubted him but he was SO SMOOTH TALKING and attentive. Just like he had been with me in the beginning! I was his only wife — we married at 19 (me) and 20 (him) so I didn’t even have any Ex’s to consult!

Now, I heard that his live-in girlfriend has told someone that she thinks he is still in love with me. What a hoot! He doesn’t know how to love ANYONE but himself (and I do believe he does love himself inordinately.) The poor girl!! She still has that aspect of his “empty” personality to find out but at least, her statement makes me believe that she is getting the idea!

This is getting too long — but I hope my post lays some of your questions about the “wife” of your conman to rest,. As most of us victims (wife or gf/bf) are alike, I am beginning to believe that all deceived wifes or gf/bfs share the same emotional “gut level” confusions without anyone “warning” us.

All the bad guys share the same qualities — no conscience, no guilt, no shame. They won’t change!

Congratulations to all of us who have gotten “out” and make good use of the rest of our lives!!

ANewLily

Erin, your history with Sam Vaknin (and beyond) is identical to mine.

There was some value in it to opening my eyes to narcissim and leading me to investigate further, as you did.

Knowledge of any kind is power!

amay61

Blindsided31
I am encouraged that you really do know exactly what my situation is, though it saddens me that it has happened to either of us. My heart aches so bad! My marriage has been dead for so long, we have been reduced to sharing a mortgage and carpooling our children around. We not only don’t sleep together, we don’t even sleep on the same floor of the house! Most days/nights we don’t even address each other hello or goodbye. We are both devoted to the children, but they will catch on to the coldness.

It was actually after the lovely days with “Mr. Wonderful P” that a conversation about our empty marriage came up. I told him that I wanted out, that I wanted to be loved and to love again. He said that he has known for 10+ years now, that I have wanted him to dissappear.
But that he won’t go anywhere out of duty to the children.

He lives a comfortable life with me. I have had a small inheritance which has kept us off the streets. My salary has sustained him for years while he prances around town building his ego. (I guess if I take a good honest look at it all, I must have married an N or something similar).

I am in no way in love with him now, and don’t believe that I ever could be again. “Mr. Wonderful P” knew exactly what my vulnerabilities were and moved right in. I’m embarrassed to say, however, how much I adore him and think of him ALL the time. I wish things were different. I feel so trapped.

ErinBrock

amay61:
You sound as if you are looking for an ‘out’…..questioning your marriage and finding the answers you already knew.
Unfortunately, you are finding ‘It is what it is’.

It is wonderful that you are seeking education and raising your awareness of the situation. Now….the question is……what are YOU going to do about it.
Please do not feel trapped! There is ALWAYS a viable way out of any situation.
It may not be ‘easy’, but it is always do-able.
Life does get better……I was also in a loveless long term marriage…..roommate situation also.
Trust me, the way your living is not healthy for you, your H, or your children. The kids see it, sense it and live it. They may not say anything, acknowledge anything…….but they see it.
You don’t want to set this example of a relationship for them.
You need to do something to change all of your lives.
I wavered for years, thinking I could make it better, do something different etc…..I finally came to the realization….there was NOTHING I could do…….it just wasn’t to be.
You know it’s dangerous for you, on many levels to have a S on the side…..you need to find a way to process this pain and use this experience to educate yourself (as you are doing).
Thank God you didn’t invest any further in this S…..keep your eyes open and never turn your back…..you know the damage they can cause. They are captivating, romantic, high energy lovers…..this is the catch……then the ‘other side’ appears…..this guy didn’t wait very long…..WOW! That was a gift for you!
Stay away!!!! NC……PERIOD!
Yes, it will be hard…..find another outlet for your pain and vulnerablilites…..BUT STAY NC…..it’s like a diet….the first week is the hardest….then it gets easier. Oh, don’t think he will not try to get in touch….he will…….STAY NC!!!!! PERIOD!!!! YOU DO NOT OWE HIM ANYTHING!!!! PERIOD!!!!
Plan an exit from your marriage, put your energies into that. Do it all silently, and you will grow along the way.
You found you will not be able to ‘replace’ one relationship with another……if your not in a ‘healthy’ mindset to offer yourself…….you will not find another healthy relationship. Deal with one before entering another…..give yourself time. It’s okay.
You will be okay!
You will never be able to run from your problems, as you have discovered this……running only creates bigger issues.
NOW….use this time for progress and growth.
Seek answers and you will find.
It’s YOUR TIME NOW!!!
I wish you strength and patience!!!
XXOO

slimone

Libelle,

Interesting so many have brought up Mr. Vaknin. I read lots of his work, early on. Some of what I read was useful and eye-opening. But like you his idea of the inverted narcissist was very disturbing to me. It created a sense of shame, embarrassment, and confusion. Sound familiar? He is a self-proclaimed narcissist.

YOU know if you are empathetic, and can create and sustain meaningful and reciprocal relationships. The bummer is I read his work when I was in the shock stage, and some of his ideas had me feeling as unchangeable and disordered as the perpetrators. This really wasn’t helpful. At all.

Henry,

I love what you understand about yourself: “When I get to feeling like a true person, I volunteer to let another abuser knock me down.” I have done that many times!! Thank-you for sharing it. So simple, but SO true. For me it’s like I get strong and then I go in to do ‘more battle’. I think I must keep trying to ‘right’ the ‘wrongs’ of my childhood. But it is so misdirected, and I only end up further injured, self-hating, and feeling disconnected.

Let’s do it differently this time, huh? Let’s keep making choices that are self-loving and life affirming. All those wrongheaded messages we got about being worthless don’t belong to us. They belong to those who would have had us believe them.

Thank-you again for sharing that insight. As I begin to feel better and better I will remember, and know that this is when I become vulnerable to jumping back in the ring.

Love to you all….

amay61

ErinBrockovich
Thank you so much! I will read your post over and over, just for strength.
The urge to turn back to S is very strong, but I know what a mistake it would be. Thank God for LF and all of you. I am going to process all of this and get back with whatever come next.
God bless you!!!

neveragain

amay61: As my therapist said to me at one point, you already DO know how to live on your own without a man loving you….you’ve been doing it.

You are stronger than you know. I think Erin gives good advice.

You have your kids, that is wonderful! Better for them to be from a broken home than IN a broken home.

You are not trapped, but Mr. Wonderful is not. ANY man who hits on a married woman is NOT Mr. Wonderful. End of story!

Be strong. Stay in your integrity. Get clear on who you are and what you stand for. And what you won’t stand for. You deserve the best in life, you really do. You are a person with a lot of love to give. Give it to yourself and your kids, that’s a start. Find what is right and hang on to that, start weeding out the rest. It is hard, but it is worth it. Very hard, of course.

Stay strong! Make a list of everything Mr. Wonderful did that showed he was Mr. Horrible. Read it daily. Don’t go from the frying pan into the fire.

Ox Drover

Dear Ama61,

I am glad that my words have helped you, I know that LF has been a wonderful support for me. sometimes I ask myself why I can give “such good advice” to others and at times not take it myself! I think we all can “see” others’ situations without the emotional strings we have on our own problems.

I walk the same walk toward Healing that you and everyone here does…each day I try to do the things that I think are for the best. sometimes my decisions and choices “work” and some times they don’t. Sometimes my head says one thing and my heart another.

I’ve been in great conflict today because of the choice that I made about confronting my egg donor and trying to stop her buying ammunition (literally) for my P son to harm me and my other two sons. I DO NOT want to do this, I am so TIRED of all this chaos and stress and I want to stay NC totally, but at the same time, I know that if I don’t take this opportunity and my P-son harms one or both of my other sons, I could NOT live with myself. I am no longer afraid for me, the worst that he can do is to kill me and I am no longer afraid. Cautious, yes, but I no longer live in fear of him or of death. I don’t want to die, but I no longer fear it. I do feel obligated though to protect myself and my other two sons to the extent that I ihave the opportunity. I can’t back down.

Each day all of us have decisions and choices, and we do the best we can with what we have to work with. Life does get better. I was in FEAR and TERROR and I am no longer living that way. But now I live in determination and somewhere I will find the strength to live one more day and do what I think is the right choice. That is all any of us can do. Having the wise and caring people here on LF that support us in our efforts and comfort us in our failures, that is what life is all about. Caring and supporting good and good people. God bless you.

blindsided31

amay 61
The similarities between us are amazing except that I was led on for a full 18 months- if you think about the S all the time after only a short period, you may be able to imagine how wrapped up in the S I was after 18 months- and during the 18 months, he was always wonderful to me- when he dumped me it was a total shock. For me, the relationship was going to be long term. Of course, unbenounced to me, the S got bored (as sociopaths inevitably do) and moved right on to his next “victim” knowing he was hurting me but not really caring (actually, I think he got a charge out of how much I cared and how much he hurt me-it made him feel powerful- probably why he has contacted me at choice moments over the past year)

My home situation is a little different. My only child is about to start her senior year in college, so most of the time it is my husband and I at home. He is quite a bit older than me, retired and has multlple medical and emotional issues- I doubt he could take care of himself – pretty much what keeps me here- how can I abandon him? he could not support himself financially either.

I understand feeling trapped- I do too. I am still working on dealing with that issue.

Fortunately, I have a stable full time job that keeps me busy.

And I am slowly working on other issues. My therapist and the kind people who write on this blog help keep me sane.

Keep reading and writing- and remember NC- it gets easier. Justabouthealed’s advice to make a list of negative things about the S is also a good one- I have such a list that I refer to often. Also I have found the book “The Sociopath Next Door” very helpful.

Tilly

Oxy:
I feel very protective to your two sons Oxy! I guess its transference and projection onto them by me of my youngest son. I feel that id anything should happen to them the whole of LF would be over there in a flash to save them.
But, like you, I gave up being afraid of death many many years ago. (Of pain yes, of death no). I’m sure it is because we are so sick of fighting this whole matter of P’s , for ourselves. It is exhausting.
At the same time it drives us forward wanting those we love and care about to be protected in any way possible. It matters more than anything.

Tilly

After reading Sam Vaknin I believed that I MUST be an inverted narcissist. So recognising this, when I realised my ex sociopath partner was one, I “settled for him ” thinking that was all i deserved….the worst thing for a victim of a sociopath to think. After all, hadn’t everyone (except my kids and my dogs) that I had ever loved, turned out to be a psychopath? So of course, it MUST BE ME. Good one Sam! (NOT!)

Tilly

Now I know that all but one, of my kids, is a cluster B.

ErinBrock

Tills:
This is ‘why’ we must define ourselves….we must know and be honeset with ourselves…..and not take anyone elses definition of ‘us’ as the gospel.
If we question ourselves, this is healthy…..our behaviors, thoughts etc….
Sam also say’s this is ‘proof’ we are not the problem…..

We’ve all, blamed ourselves and beaten ourselves up……BUT WE MUST STOP! Accept the human part of us and allow the growth to occur.

One thing that stood out for me what the S always saying….”Im never going to change,you better get used to it.”
He never said he was ‘happy’ the way he was,,,,,he just said he would never change.
THAT was the time I should have trusted in his words!!!! YIKES!

We need to get to know US…….so we never question anyones interpretation of US again!!!!
XXOO

amay61

Dearest Blindsided,
I’m so sorry if I sounded insensitive to your 18 months vs. my whirlwind. Of course being completely taken in and in love for that period of time and then finding out the truth is devastating! Please don’t think that I belittle that at all.

I had actually met my S about 6 months ago, thought then that we had “clicked” and maintained a very casual, sporadic email contact until we got together for those very intensive days. In the 2 days that we spent together, he extracted (completely without me realizing) every detail of information – except social security #, that he needed to completely devastate me financially. He did this while declaring his undying commitment to me, that we were “meant to be” – that God had put this together – that He was my safety net – and even quoted Roman 8:28 All things work together for good for those who love the Lord!!!

When I finally came to – after the sudden and mean spirited demand for money – I was so wrought emotionally that my doctor actually ordered a cat scan to make sure I was okay!

By the way, the demand came via text message – so that I didn’t have the personal visual to attach the emotions to – making it surreal and me incapable of blaming or hating him. I still adored him, while my head was reeling from the demands.

cutandrun

Wow this is such a great and timely discussion for me this morning. Appreciative of everyone’s comments but can particularly relate to amay61 and blindsided.

I was also in a brief but intense emotional (was getting physical but thank the Lord it didn’t get “that” far) relationship w/ a P, about 15 weeks, despite having an outwardly happy but inwardly one-sided and passionless 23 yr. marriage.

My husband is now working double and triple time to make up for all the emptiness in our marriage, and I’m super thankful for this.

My problem now is I have been NC w/ P since May 12, which to me seems to be a good chunk of time, but I am still struggling with the temptation to contact him. And I am really bothered by this since now I have a great relationship with my husband, he has been so supportive and helpful. So I am wondering what is wrong with myself, am I really that damaged that I would still want the P vs. my husband?

And I caught on to the P’s manipulative behavior before I even learned what a “P” was, and cut off the relationship myself just on the moral grounds. And the fact that I was having physical anxiety issues over the guilt and could not continue and keep the secrets and sneaking around.

But because of the intensity of the relationshit (yeah I like that one too!), when I cut him off it just left such a huge vacuum of emptiness and boredom. And this little demon in the back of my mind will say I didn’t give him enough of a chance. And I look at my life now and it still looks the same as it was before P, and maybe coming close to “normal” again, and all these deep seated fears come to the surface, from abuse suffered as a child and my social difficulties and awkwardness make me feel like just running away, run Forrest run!! And because he mirrored “me” to me so well, he seems like the better choice….

And then I have to repeat over and over to myself all the very blatant signs that he gave me that he was a P……

“you are beautiful”
“you are perfect”
“I need you “here” (on IM) A LOT”
“you fill in all the spaces in me”
“you are the answer to my prayers (playing the “religious” card)”
“do you know how it feels to live with this emptiness”
“sometimes I will use a customer’s own stupidity to mock them when they complain”
“You “get” me”
“I want to drink you in small sips for the next 25 years”
“I’m not sorry (at our first in=person meeting, regarding his wife)”
“you make me happy”
“I will always be right here”
“you can’t hurt me and I can’t hurt you”
“we are 50/50 at fault here”
“it was difficult for me to love you, but I do”

and I’m sure I could go on. It was emotional rape. But I get upset with myself because I think it should all be “behind” me by now and it should just be so obvious I shouldn’t give it any more of my thought life. Why am I so afraid of doing without that creep? Any my husband has been so good at helping to “talk me down” from these cliffs, but I get afraid to talk to him about it cause I think that he’s got to have a time limit at some point and say enough is enough, get over it!

So on the inside, I just want to RUN AWAY!

Ox Drover

Dear Tilly,

Thank you for your protective feelings for me and my “boys” (men, actually, and GOOD men at that!) I had a hard day yesterday and very stressful and woke up today with a “stress hangonver.” YES, IT DOES FEEL JUST LIKE AN ALCHOLIC HANGOVER….son C also woke up with that feeling, but now that we’ve had a few cups of coffee and time to wake up good, we are both feeling better.

I commented to him that “feelilng better now” and having felt the way we did when the stress is intense, is a GOOD sign that we are NOT UNDER ALL THIS STRESS ALL THE TIME LIKE WE USED TO BE.

In the past, we were under such a wash of adreneline ALL THE TIME that if a real emergency came up we couldn’t summon the “fight or flight” syndrome to help us. NOW WE ARE ON A BETTER PATH.

I have been going through the huge stack of letters from P-son to son C, to the Trojan Horse Psychopath, etc. and picking the ones I want to take to the Reverend as proof and as examples of the EVIL P-son tries to do and is. I worked for two horus this morning reading through them, and attaching notes to each one to make them more understandable to othe Rev. also a copy of the PI report I got on the Trojan Horse, The letters from my P-offspring to the Trojan Horse are so cute and actually ina way funny. Filled with “F%$K” this, and “F%$K” that and the ones to my egg donor are “I am praying for you grandma, what would Jesus do?” LOL

I don’t want to overwhelm the Rev with a huge stack so will just take a few of the “better ones” like the one where P-son is bragging about “how horrible” his crime was “much worse than the cops know.”

I’m gonna take a couple of hour break and then do another couple of hours of reading. Getting my packet together, and also need to make a few phone calls, etc. Just chip away at several things that need doing, but I’m not under th eSTRESS about it I was last night, it is jelling into DETERMINATION and PLANNING now, rather than an emotional reaction. I had a friend here yesterday who is also a serial victim of Ps and she and I talked late into the evening after the guys had gone to bed, and she was a very comforting validation for me.

amay61

Dear Cutandrun
My little demon on the back tells me over and over that I didn’t give him enough of a chance, that I misunderstood and that I am being unreasonable. After all, he presented himself as a God-fearing born-again Christian. I should have wanted to help him out of a jam. The face-to-face with him was always wonderful. EVERY item of verifiable info, (background, address, workplace etc. checked out. He did not lie.) The Mr. Hyde showed up in texts. I have to REMIND myself that that part of him is very real!!

The empty marriage is the impetus for you, me and I believe, Blindsided, to want to believe this other guy. It’s so refreshing after so long. PLEASE don’t forget the dark side, stay strong and safe.

Tilly

Oxy:
OMG! I can’t believe you have to read through all of that stuff all over AGAIN! Talk about ENDLESS!!!
You are so brave Oxy and you SOO give me strength. I have huge empathy for you because i know that i am going to have to do just what you are doing now (in a different scenario) later on. And the dread of knowing that that is coming up and having to shut the big part of me off that once felt the FOG (and the LOVE)for the P’s is overwhelming.
But i can see with the help of your boys and your HP (higher power) that you are fine and that you will get through it, i.e. by Knowing that you have left no stone unturned to protect your boys and yourself and that you have done everything in your power to get help to survive and live a full and better life in whatever you can.
It will make such a difference for you and the boys (I know..MEN!!) if you can use this opportunity to help you. But I know we both have to hand the result over to God and sometimes in the past i have felt God has let me down so badly. Only to find out later, just why. (Usually because I have to help someone else go through it too!).
Chin up Oxy, I am glad your other son felt strong enough to say ” I am staying NC as I can’t emotionally cope with anymore of it” ( in his OWN WORDS of course), and that you all respected him for it. It is hard to say that when the pressure is on, to those you love knowing that it could be misconstrued .
TOWANDA OXY! You have taken a massive huge step in your fight for you and your boys to safety. xoxoxoxxo

Tilly

ErinB:
I love your posts. You are ALWAYS so strong and postive (and right). I aspire to be like you!
Yes, Sam Vaknin does serve a big purpose in our recovery. I think its because of his publicity he has construed for himself, because he is often the first reading a victim of a P/N/S gets their hands on. It is the first step in treating the P like an “Other than human”.
For me it was like believing that “the greys” or “the aliens” actually do come down to the planet earth and take people to their spaceships and vacate the persons spirit and hop into the victims body and return to earth”.
But then that made me a “slave to the alien”. My core belief that my mother and father and brother ingrained into me was “THERE IS SOMETHING WRONG WITH YOU! WHAT YOU SAY YOU SEE DOES NOT EXIST ( i.e. their horrendous violence and dysfunction) AND IT HAS NOT HAPPENED EVER !THEREFORE YOU ARE A WEIRDO LIAR EVIL NUTCASE”) or an “inverted narcissist”. HOW DARE YOU SAM VAKNIN!

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