By | January 8, 2016 27 Comments

Everyone’s Ex is a Psychopath


Hello, Lovefraud Readers. A quick reintroduction: I’m Helen Beverly, an author and psychotherapist who writes under the name H.G. Beverly. I was married to a psychopath for over a decade and am still dealing with the challenges of raising our children “together” in a society that struggles to deal with psychopathy. I’ve written some posts about those challenges that you can find archived here on Lovefraud. Also, I published my memoir, The Other Side of Charm, in 2014 and am now releasing my next book one chapter at a time. You can find it here and on my blog at It’s called My Ex is a Psychopath, But I Am Strong and Free.

This book details my healing journey despite failed systems that left me in constant contact with my ex. I talk about how I learned to manage the situation and how I have recovered peace and happiness despite obstacles. Look for a new chapter here each week on Fridays. Here is the first chapter.

Chapter One
Everyone’s Ex is a Psychopath

Spend time on any online forum for victims of psychopaths, sociopaths, or narcissists, and you’ll find millions of people suffering at the hands of those who just don’t care. People are played, worked over, and used every day. Our world is full of misogynists, bullies, batterers, and control freaks. They confuse us and taunt us and lure us in with irresistible magnetism. They abuse our children and post videos that cause mass outrage—like a girl throwing puppies in the river to drown. We are horrified. We are scared. We are too easily seduced.

Who are these evil people? Are they all psychopaths? Just some of them? Can someone be just a little bit psychopathic but still maybe care (for me)? What’s the difference between a psychopath and a sociopath? Or a narcissist?

Will the real psychopaths please stand up?

If you’re confused, you’re not alone. In the U.S. today, mental health diagnoses are made using the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5). This manual helps clinicians make a diagnosis and gives them a corresponding code number for every professionally recognized disorder. For example, if your features match up with the list of criteria for Generalized Anxiety Disorder, then you get that label along with number 300.02 (F41.1) in your records. It’s more complex than that, but you get the idea.

In this manual, there are disorders that are widely considered curable and those that are considered incurable. Among the incurable are the personality disorders—including antisocial personality disorder and narcissism.

What about psychopathy? According to the DSM-5, psychopathy, sociopathy, and dyssocial personality disorders are essentially the same thing. They’re all just different names for Antisocial Personality Disorder (ASPD) 301.7 (F60.2). Those code numbers make your teeth hurt, right? So will the list of criteria for ASPD, which tells us that you have to have evidence of conduct disorder before age 15 or else you cannot make this diagnosis. Conduct disorder includes things like torturing animals or stealing. But how does a clinician get someone with ASPD to admit these things if they’re slick and have never been caught?

If you’re relying on a psychopath to tell you the truth so you can make a diagnosis, you’re kidding yourself.

Basically, ASPD is about criminal behavior. And many psychopaths aren’t criminals or at least aren’t caught.

The DSM-5 admits that there are issues with the current model for personality disorders, so the team who wrote it also put a new model in the back. The requirement for conduct disorder is still there, so it’s still closely linked to criminal behaviors. Ugh. But it does focus more on traits—like manipulative charm or deceitfulness. The bottom line? The leading experts in the U.S. are telling us that it’s really hard to figure out how to best diagnose people with ASPD or any personality disorder for that matter, and they’re working on it.

To sum it up, the clinical view of psychopathy and sociopathy is that they’re just different names for ASPD. Narcissism is separate but looks almost the same except you add a dash of “I’m ultra special” and take out a bit of the lawlessness. In fact, many of the personality disorders have overlapping features, which adds to the confusion. More on that in later chapters—for now, I want to focus more exclusively on the three that have been lumped together: psychopathy, sociopathy, and ASPD.

Our approach to personality disorders is a complex issue that impacts diagnosis and treatment on many levels. For example, all personality disorders are generally considered incurable. But some are considered treatable, or even just manageable through addressing symptoms. Examples include Obsessive Compulsive Personality Disorder (OCD) and Schizotypal Personality Disorder. Then there are the personality disorders that many consider untreatable, such as ASPD and Narcissistic Personality Disorder. These beliefs influence the number of clinicians who are willing to work with people who have personality disorders (it’s not a popular calling) and who are interested in developing new treatments for those with personality disorders (many believe it’s like banging your head up against a wall). It also influences whether and how a clinician will be paid; when a clinician puts the code number on the insurance forms for a personality disorder that is considered incurable and unmanageable, few insurance companies are going to be excited about covering care. What’s the point of paying for treatment if it will go no where, anyway? Right? Clinicians need to make a living like anyone else, so most of them who work with the general public stay as far away from personality disorders as possible. It’s particularly easy to avoid psychopaths or narcissists because most of these people will never consider therapy, anyway. And that’s fine for most clinicians, because it’s no fun to work with people who aren’t covered and who aren’t likely to feel better and then say thanks.

Psychopaths already feel great, thank you very much. And yes, a narcissist may become depressed over the empty nature of his or her superficial existence, but the chances that a narcissist will show up in therapy asking to feel less special or less accomplished are slim. You can relieve the depression, but can you change the narcissistic traits? It’s a clinical dilemma.

Or consider labeling an adult with ASPD. You’re saying this person is a criminal. I’ve seen this label misused in the homeless population. Out of desperation on a freezing cold night, a homeless man might fake a disorder to get into a mental health emergency room and stay. Do this a few times, and he’s likely to be diagnosed with ASPD for his deceitful exploitation of the system—even without proof of conduct disorder before age 15. (Clinicians misuse diagnoses all the time.) But desperate people often work the system to meet their most pressing needs. Wouldn’t you, if it was ten below and snowing? Does that deserve a diagnosis? Does that deserve the stamp of a criminal applied to that homeless man for the rest of his life? What if he served in the Vietnam War or in Iraq, which is common among homeless men? Are we serving him?

ASPD is easy to apply to someone who is acting like a pain. Someone who lies to us repeatedly, someone who is aggressive and gets in a fight in the waiting room. Clinicians (wrongly) skip over the self-reported conduct disorder before age 15 requirement because they (rightly) don’t believe they can get those answers from the client. I’m not saying it’s wrong to diagnose an aggressive, deceitful person with ASPD, I’m just saying it’s not always right. I’m also saying it’s impossible to apply this label to the many charming psychopaths among us will never act out. The hand shaking, seemingly values-driven man who smiles and notices the beautiful color of my eyes just before showing off the photos he carries of his kids. Clinicians are human and fall for all the same tricks anyone else does. And in that situation, ASPD just doesn’t feel like a fit.

Even if that man is actually the psychopath.

So there are three big challenges to the clinical perspective. First, psychopaths are the last people on earth to show up in therapy. (There’s nothing wrong with them.) Second, even if they do, the diagnostic tools are confusing and clinicians are human. Third, personality disorders are considered incurable and coverage is questionable.

This influences our clinical knowledge base. Because ultimately, clinical professionals aren’t going to invest time and money learning about a disorder that they’d rather not see.

But that leaves you vulnerable when you show up in family or couples therapy with a husband who’s a psychopath and who only showed up to frame or seduce you or play with the therapist. Or when a child is being abused by a psychopathic parent and none of the helping professionals know how to see through the charming facade because none of them have invested time learning how to.

I’d venture to say that the majority of working clinicians haven’t really studied psychopathy at all. Is that a big issue? Considering that it’s estimated to be as common as ADHD in the U.S.—one in 25 people or 12 million Americans—I’d say that it’s not just a blind spot, it’s a black hole.

Then there’s the expert perspective. Robert Hare is a leader in the field of psychopathy and has developed The Psychopathy Checklist, a way of identifying psychopaths that is completely separate from the DSM-5. I appreciate his checklist because it focuses more on personality traits and less on bad behavior. He believes that all psychopaths have ASPD but not everyone who has ASPD is a psychopath. Because you can do antisocial, criminal things even if you feel bad about it. My issues here, again, is the conduct disorder component of the ASPD diagnosis. By necessity, Hare has worked almost exclusively with criminals. But what about those who have never been caught or aren’t violent? They slip through the cracks.

Then there are sociopaths, and Martha Stout is a leader in this field. She says that the defining trait of a sociopath is that they lack a conscience and that the most universal warning sign is that they will ask for your pity. Her operating definition of a sociopath aligns neatly with Hare’s definition of a psychopath, but her stories and descriptions enable us to see sociopathic behaviors in everyday contexts. She places less emphasis on a criminal background and more emphasis on traits, such as glib and superficial charm, a charismatic glow or magnetic intensity. Like many experts, she also shares numbers. Stout claims that there are more sociopaths in the U.S. than people with anorexia, four times as many as schizophrenics, and one hundred times more than people diagnosed with colon cancer.

Staggering numbers. Do they include psychopaths? Are we talking about the same thing? Some people consider a psychopath to be an extreme form of a sociopath. Some say that psychopathy is genetic and sociopathy is learned, like from parenting or in a gang. Some say that psychopathy is about traits and sociopathy is about behavior.

My question is why we haven’t formally aligned the experts, the researchers, the clinicians, and the diagnostic manual and tools around clear definitions. It puts a stop on widespread understanding. If the American Bar Association or the National Association of Social Workers were to approve a continuing education course for professionals across the nation, would they choose to align with the leading researchers and study psychopathy or the leading clinicians and study sociopathy? What about ASPD? Which set of criteria would they promote? The old model, the new model, or The Psychopathy Checklist? Would participants spend the course debating whether evidence of criminal behaviors or conduct disorder are necessary for an ASPD diagnosis, or would they get distracted trying to figure out the difference between a psychopath and a sociopath? Which assessments should court-affiliated psychologists use to evaluate people and make recommendations to the court?

How can we develop national standards when we don’t have clear, agreed-upon definitions?

On top of that, pop psychology “celebrities” basically pick a term and stick with it, producing an ocean of materials that align with their opinion about which label is right and how the disorder looks or feels to victims. This information is an invaluable grass-roots contribution to the literature on how these disorders are manifested. But what it creates is confusion. And what’s missing is alignment. Are researchers interested in categorizing or even acknowledging these volumes of information? Are clinical programs considering the public, pop psych contribution? Is any organization casting a wide enough net to pull these elements into one clear, concise set of standards that can help us understand and protect ourselves from conscienceless people?

Ultimately, pop psych information is used most by people who look online for answers they haven’t gotten from their legal or mental health professionals. And that’s a big hole to fill. I wasn’t introduced to psychopathy in grad school except to make a quick mental link between criminals and ASPD, even in my course Psychopathology and Deviance. We didn’t talk about psychopaths. And I attended a highly reputed program at a large university. To be honest with you, I have yet to meet a single mental health professional whose core program taught them even a little about how to identify psychopaths. It’s almost like you have to be on track for the FBI just to get exposure. You have to be fascinated with criminality. Most clinicians are not. So when you are dealing with a difficult person in your life and are at a loss for answers, it’s easy to feel like you have to find your own. Once online, it’s not hard to find a quick link between your ex’s behavior and psychopathy, sociopathy, narcissism—or ASPD.

Which leads us back to the question: is my ex a psychopath?

Maybe. In a world of too many definitions for psychopath, everyone is pretty much picking the one that works for them and running with it. You can certainly do the same. But why do you need to know? If it’s for a court case, then I’d recommend hiring an expert witness who’s trained in The Psychopathy Checklist and will work with the court to have your ex formally evaluated. (I’d use the Checklist over the DSM-5 because a person can be diagnosed with ASPD without being a psychopath. You need the Checklist to determine psychopathy.) But if it’s for your own clarity, then I’d say read on. In the end, this book can empower anyone involved with a difficult person, regardless of the diagnosis. And in this muddled up world of psychopaths vs. sociopaths vs. ASPD, we could all use both of those things: clarity and empowerment.

Author’s Note:

Check back next Friday for Chapter Two: Labels and Lists Might Not Help.

And get The Other Side of Charm FREE on Amazon Kindle from Saturday, January 9 until Monday, January 11, 2016. If you like it, please share the book and positive reviews. If you have questions, please contact me through my website. Many thanks!

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H.G. Beverly – Welcome back! I am so glad to have your voice here at Lovefraud again. I can’t wait to read more of your chapters.

To Lovefraud readers – if you are attempting to co-parent with a psychopath or sociopath, I recommend that you read H.G. Beverly’s previous articles, which are in the archives under her name.

Hope Springs

As always, thank you so much for this invaluable post.

It is such an empty and terrible thing to try and PROVE that someone in your life is a SP or a P. You just come off looking like a complete nut.

However, there is no joy in vindication. Been there, done that.

My son has been clinically diagnosed THREE TIMES in his 33 years. Professionally! My husband and I are STILL having problems with all of what this entails.

I am not in denial, accept the diagnoses, and have established NO CONTACT.

My husband cannot quite bring himself to do the same.

Every time our son re-enters our lives, there is drama, chaos and triangulation. It will always be so.

What is the best that we can hope for? Can there be happiness even with diagnosis, is I guess, what I am proposing?


Bev, we have experienced the same thing with our son. He was diagnosed with ADHD & Oppositional Defiance. This is the clinical diagnosis, but since age 3 he showed no fear, no remorse, very jealous of siblings, and didn’t respond to discipline. We adopted him when he was three. I realized the disorder before my husband. He came to see it much later. We had to establish no contact after he turned 18. He is 18 and in jail. We don’t know why, but I have to resist the urge to reach out to “my son”, whom I still love. I’ve researched sociopathy. He exhibits all the characteristics. He stole over $800 dollars (in cash & credit cards), by age 17. He stole from others, never could consider anyone’s feelings, never showed remorse, was charmingly deceitful, cute smile, and always wanted to be the center of attention. After adopting Aaron, our three biological children were still living in our home our marriage suffered much. We could not agree on how to handle Aaron. There is no cure for adult sociopath. They don’t think they need help. If I had it to do over, I would have taken Aaron to a Psychotherapist before he grew bigger than me.

Hope Springs

Hello Cherry!

Omg…FINALLY…someone out there who has truly been through what I have. You really do start to think that you are the only one.

As a mother, I find that I cannot be honest about all of this with most people. It is my OWN son, is what I think that they think. You probably know what I mean. Thank goodness (I say for I don’t know how many times…lol…for this site and the people on it).

My son has not been arrested as yet…at least not that I am aware of. I do believe that it could happen in the future, though. He is extremely cocky and would think that he could get away with anything because he really believes that he is smarter than everyone on the planet.

I almost am thinking that he married and had children (very fast) because in his mind, not only does he want to project to the world that he is just like or wants what everyone else has, but that it also may reign in any criminal tendencies that he has.Help him stay on the straight and narrow, so to speak.

The oppositional defiance that you speak of is an interesting term that I have not yet heard. It sums up very well what my son is like. My son also had no fear, no remorse, and instead of being happy when others were happy…he only seemed angry and jealous and would then act out. Anger is his only emotion. Discipline NEVER worked on our son either. He loved being ‘grounded’ or sent to his room. Then, we could not all go out and have a good time! It felt like my husband and I were never ‘allowed’ to be happy when our son was around, and in a strange way, we started to actually live that way. Man, just realizing and saying that is really a sick way to live.

Yes, it is very hard on a marriage isn’t it? Especially when one of you is further along that the other in the realization that there is NOTHING that you can do to help the disordered child (or adult as the case may be). Boy, have we been there…and are doing that, as we speak! I only hope that my husband will catch up with me. I am being patient, but it is incredibly hard whenever my husband backslides. I long for the day when he is right with me on the same page. I hope that it happens.

I love my husband and I know that he is coming from a place of love for his son. That is what is keeping me hanging in. My husband is Mr Good Intention. I know that and it is one of the reasons I feel for him almost 40 years ago. However…I know that the ONLY way forward for us is to let our son go, totally. That’s a hard pill to swallow, especially for my husband.

Thank you so much for posting. It means the world! I hope that we can stay in touch. We could be of great help and benefit to each other.

Cheers 🙂


Thank you Bev for your post. I look forward to reading your previous articles. This week I’ve been especially inundated with my soon to be ex psychopathic husband and his antics. Always lots and lots of messes and chaos to clean up when they decide to plant themselves and take root in your life. My lawyer calls me “my only client”-yep lucky me. The judge is so on to him and with each bang of the gavel I’m closer to my divorce. I never have to guess, as long as I’m married to him, where I’m going to spend my time, energy and resources—him, him, him.

Hope Springs

Thank you!

I know all about the drama and the chaos…like I said, those things enter my life whenever my son pops up.

I thank goodness that he lives over three hours away, but, sure enough, he ‘popped’ up here on New Year’s day, wanting my husband and I to meet his new girlfriend. Bear in mind, he is going through a NASTY split with his ex, a wonderful girl, and all of a sudden pretending that he is ‘father of the year’ fighting for 50/50 custody of their two young children. He does not have a pot to piss in, is irresponsible…blah blah blah. All the usual bullshit. I digress…

Anyway, I had already established no contact with him, but my husband said ‘sure’, we’ll meet you two for lunch, when our son texted HIM New Year’s eve. Good old divide and conquer…I of course, opted out. My husband went and when he returned home, I told him that I did not want to know anything about their ‘visit’

The next day my ex daughter in law was messaging me ‘I heard you met the new girl’… I was incredulous! My son obviously knows that would bother her and must have had to rub her nose in it…I let her know that I in fact DID NOT participate in meeting the girl…things have been bad since. MANIPULATION…TRIANGULATION…it is all so evident.

I am at a point with my husband where I just want to wring his neck. He opened the door and it’s been drama and chaos for a week since…as difficult as it all is, we MUST have no contact…not even with the ex, seemingly, as she also draws us back in, although with different intentions.

My husband also says that our son is merely ‘moving on’ and that’s a good thing. Our son will NEVER move on. He will drive his ex nuts forever. My husband is seeing his tactics, but won’t commit to no contact. I want to pull my hair out.

No matter. I cannot help my ex daughter in law. I cannot help my son change into what I wish he was. Bottom line. I must be OUT of it.

Thank you for the post again, and thank you for listening.


Dear Bev,
You have a sympathetic ear here. I get your frustration. I’ve let half of my children go live with my husband to avoid the conflict which you describe. I personally could not bear it. I feel better with my children with him than them with me pulling me under. My husband’s attorney wants to make me look like a bad mother. This is causing a major rift in your marriage. Your husband needs to be in your side. Your son is a grown man. Your son has many advocates who is your advocate? It’s one thing for your husband want to see your son and quite another to set you up. You are being set up. Decision time.

Hope Springs

Thank you so very much becomingstrong. You are truly wonderful.

My husband and I have been together for almost 40 years (since we were 15). I am not prepared to give up on us…only on my son. My husband is coming around. I think that his journey is just taking longer than mine partly because, I believe, this site and some other personality disorder websites. They have helped me immensely. My husband works full time and does not have the benefit of time to get the help and support that he need to move forward.

It is happening, though…too slowly for my liking, but I feel like I have to let him get there on his own. I do not want to force him to get there faster than he can, just for my benefit. SPs do reveal their true colors to all, eventually, I really do believe. My husband did not want to see what was right in front of him. It is very hard to deal with your own son having this disorder.

My husband is realizing (slowly) that settling for a convoluted superficial relationship with his son is only hurting everyone.Drama and chaos. I mean, who wants to live like that? Just the SP. Both our son, and my husband already know that I will not participate in anything superficial, ever again. My son is only about want and need on his own part, with no reciprocation…ever. I am done.

Thank you for everything. You certainly are right about this site. Sympathetic ears all around!

Cheers and much love…Bev


Bev, It was so good to read that your husband is slowly coming around.hopefully it won’t be to long now before Drama & Chaos are part of the past. I am so sorry this happened to you 7 your husband.

Sending blessings & wellness.

Hope Springs

Thank you for the kind words, Dragon.

I am so appreciative of this site.

I would like to say that my husband and I were not aware what was wrong with our son, even from birth. We were not able to bond with him. We were 19 and 18 years old, respectively, and thought that perhaps things would just work themselves out or get better.We thought that our son had colic or some other benign problem.

Throughout our son’s young life, there were red flags constantly, but again, we were naive to personality disorders. We could never get a straight answer from him, he pathologically lied, he hurt animals and killed one (that I know of), he was preoccupied with stealing from other peoples’ yards on his way home from school, he was preoccupies with setting fires, he was NEVER happy…and I mean NEVER. Birthdays, Christmas…in fact on those special occasions, he was on his worst behavior.He NEVER wanted to be around us or people in general, spending almost 100% of his time in his bedroom, where, btw, we would hear him singing in a monotone voice…we would hear him saying weird things…It was all just complete weirdness and misery for my husband and myself. We were at a loss. FINALLY, at about age 6, we took him to a psychologist, who diagnosed him with SP disorder.

I swear, we did not even know the implications of this. We were given no guidance…there was no internet (it was the mid 80s)…anyway, we ignored the diagnosis, not even telling anyone. Two years later, we gave up and placed our son in care. He remained there with a wonderful family until he moved out at age 17. We reconnected with him at 16, a year before he left his foster home. Sounds good, right? BIG MISTAKE.

He had been diagnosed AGAIN while living with them, but his foster parents did not believe it either! (How many times do we have to hear it to believe?!)

He pretended to be someone else when we reconnected and we thought he was okay! We only saw him sporadically, here and there. I was beginning to realize that he only ever wanted anything to do with us when he was in trouble, mostly financially and NEEDED us to help. Because we felt guilty about putting him in care, we usually obliged. However, over the past 18 years (he is almost 34 now) and after splitting up with his wonderful ex(they unfortunately have two small children), his mask has slipped terribly. We can see that he is still the same as when he was little! Constant lies and bullshit. Fighting his ex for custody (which is a joke as the reason they split is because he fell down as both a husband and a father). Living in a pigsty of a cabin with barely any heat. It is a sad tragedy.

Sure, I wonder all the time if we could have ‘helped’ him over all of these years, with being a SP, but I don’t think so. Intervention has to happen when they are very young children. As two fairly young people ourselves, my husband and I had no idea. We did not know why he would not be cuddled, did not want to even be around us. It was all so strange.

To everyone dealing with a personality disordered person….I am here to say that not all of them have been abused. I do know this…once they are a SP, I do not believe that they can change. You have to make a decision. Do you want to continue to have the drama and chaos and lying in your life?

If the answer is no…then you must decide NO CONTACT. As hard as it might be to do it.

Again, thank you for the kind words. Than
bk goodness for this site.


Oh my goodness Bev, what a nightmare journey you have been on. I cannot imagine the heartbreak of having your own child be one of these toxic people. My children (2) are my saviors & reason to keep going, even in there mid-late 20’s that they are now. I am in awe of your courage, strength & love that you have to be able to go through that experience & still keep your wonderful, beautiful emphatic side intact & come onto this wonderful site to help others. Bravo! & thank you for being such an inspiration.

It is amazing the ripple effect of toxin & chaos that these toxic, dis-ordered people create. I use to wonder all the time how these people sleep at night, If I have said harsh words to someone, I have trouble sleeping! but as I learn more & more, I don’t have to wonder anymore.

My heart goes out to his ex & children that have to deal with him now as well, hopefully they can get through this without to much damage.
Did your son display weird & sp behaviors while with his foster family? lol sorry that is a silly question considering they also got him tested. I guess I am asking if he was the same with them as he is with everyone else?

I agree, not all of them have been abused or have been around some type of dysfunction to ‘bring’ these types of disorders out. I also don’t think that there is a cure or control method for them, for me, once they have diagnosed there wouldn’t be enough trust in the universe to try & deal with one.

Yes, thank goodness for this site, it is a beacon in the dark.

Wishing you wellness & blessings
Dragon x

Hope Springs

Hi again Dragon!

You know, I am not entirely certain of the reason that our son was sent to a psychologist once with the foster family. I don’t think it was for one reason, I think it was for many reasons. I also think it was partly due to him being placed in care at all, for the reasons that we described. We were very truthful about why we wanted to place him away from us. Also, I am positive that he displayed ‘different’ or abnormal behaviors with that family as well, because I had at least twice per year contact with the foster mother. She would fill me on on things, like him basically holding their family (they had 6 or 7 children, 5 of their own, and my son and sometimes another foster child) hostage due to his constantly being ‘grounded’ for a myriad of things. He seemed (and still seems) to take pleasure in hijacking everyone. He likes the control I think.

One of the strangest things about my son is that happiness in others makes him almost angry or jealous. If he observes others enjoying something, or having a good time, he can’t seem to handle that. He starts to act out so that he can ‘ruin’ it for everyone?! Does that make any sense at all?

Yes, thank GOODNESS for this site! It is such a font and also a wonderfully freeing outlet.

Hope Springs

I just wanted to add, that yes, our son acts the same way with everyone and he did with the foster family as well…eventually. At first, he pretends to be whatever the person he is trying to impress or reel in, wants him to be, but he cannot live up to the pretense for long and always reveals who he is.


Hi Bev, I hope you had a fantastic day.
Wow it is just mind boggling that this shows up in someone so young, it is hard to imagine such a young sweet child being like this & my heart breaks that you had to experience this. Most articles about psychopaths & serial killers state that they showed signs when they were quite young, and not all of them came from dysfunctional backgrounds either. It hurts my brain to see how rampant and widespread it is.

Isn’t it strange how the trademarks of who & what they are (anger, lying, jealously, etc)the dark side of human nature, so to speak is so dominant within them but they don’t have any from the other side (love, empathy,joy etc)with so much imbalance it is bound to be destructive.

My ex was a master at the mirroring but like your son & all the others he couldn’t sustain it for very long either.

Sending you blessings and peace


H.G.Beverly. Thank you for your wonderful post, although I don’t have to co-parent with my ex any more as my children are young adults now.

I felt for such a long time that if I could put a name or classification to what these people are, that I could heal, grow and never get caught up again. I was wrong! and there seems to be no end to the long lasting effects their devastation brings.

Thank you again and best wishes.


H.G. Beverly, nice to see you back sharing here. I agree that it is exhausting and frustrating on top of our own personal regional battles that we wage just to survive and live with clarity. Having the audacity to embrace our perceptions as reality can be a daily battle for some because there are so many external forces challenging, invalidating, minimizing. Like so many other components of this moral insanity there are too many variables that we cannot control. How many times in each of our own toxic encounters were we stunned and amazed at the ability of this person or persons to twist and contort, evading accountability as our jaw dropped while highly intelligent people drink the cool aid ? In the larger framework I have learned to accept that these individuals in their drive for dominance are hiding like toxic Trojans in virtually every segment of society. I have learned the hard way that they do network which leverages their power exponentially. These people are deeply vested in perpetuating the status quo. While I don’t necessarily embrace every aspect or conclusion that is held out, I try to cast a fairly wide net when it comes to learning from others experiences and insights. For instance Andrew Lobaczewski’s writings on ponerology. Reversible blockade, paramoralisms, the cult of the plausible lie. Again, I am not promoting this ideology but there are brilliant components to it that have helped me immensely to expand my critical thinking ability. Studying humans from a sociological standpoint or a macro social one can help us to open our eyes to the bigger picture.
I have to say that I prefer the more personal descriptions and journeys that describe the day to day interactions with disordered individuals. Your work and writing has meant so much to me and helped me personally by describing with such clarity and humanity the day to day horrors that most people here are sure is only in my sick little mind. Thank You so much.


Not reversible. The term is Reversive blockade. Stupid spell check.


It is coming up to the 5 month mark since I have been NC, although I haven’t heard from him for about 2 1/2 months and that was in the form of an e-mail which I deleted unread, I can feel him circling, closer and closer to making contact, that sounds crazy outside of my head lol but that is how it feels. I am not in any way worried about him being able to get me back or anything like that, and I very much doubt he would be game enough for for a face to face with me, being the gutless wonder that he is, he would want to know how I would react first by email or ph before he did that. No it isn’t so much HIM but what that brings up in ME..I can already feel the changes, fight or flight is active, I am not sleeping, he is invading my dreams ( although I like that because they are lucid dreams & I get to say to him what I need to, cut any cords & get some closure)I am jumpy when my ph goes of and am hesitant to open my e-mail, he is in my neighbourhood more, basically stalking…UGH! I hate feeling all this crap again and it really, really bothers me that I have these triggers still! I don’t love him! my love died the moment he showed his TRUE SELF-He was away at his home town for a school reunion, that I had declined to go to as I was dealing with a neck & shoulder injury which I had had for about 4 months at that stage, this injury came with daily chronic pain & it was hard to sleep. I had be getting more & more depressed so anyway, while he was away I got bad & felt suicidal this one night & phoned him for some support. Well that was when my love died his response was ALL about him! He said don’t feel down cause I didn’t go all the way with this chick (an X) at the reunion, and then went on to describe all that they got up to as proof that he didn’t actually cheat on me. WTF! Who the HELL says that to their girlfriend of 3 years after they had told you that they were so low that their only option felt like ending it!! A Spath & Narc that’s who!! Even though I was in shock & stunned, I couldn’t deny it any longer, I knew what he was in that instant. I suppose I should be thankful for him finally showing his true colours because I was then angry instead of suicidal and anger propelled me into the start of taking care of myself. That moment was like the opening of Pandora’s Box, and the truths started coming to light.

Whew, this is the first time that I have told that bit of the story, I felt so ashamed and discussed that I had let this pretend human into my life and that I had been fooled again by one of them, although the shame should be his! lol he will never take that on, none of them do, they are all cowards inside. Part of the shame I felt was that I had turned myself inside out, upside down, back to front & taken so much crap from him for 2 1/2 years trying to make the relationship work & thinking it was me that need fixing.

Sorry for rambling on, I just needed to get that out, thank you Donna & lovefraud community for creating this space where I felt safe enough and knew I would be understood and not judged to be able to share.

Wishing you all peace, wellness and blessings.
Dragon x

Hope Springs

Wow…the realization…that moment is both good and bad all at the same time, isn’t it?

It does mean that we have to change, though, in whatever way that means.

Change is hard. Acceptance of such a reality is hard. Moving forward and having no contact is hard.

We will be stronger because of it all, I suppose.

I am sad that we all have to go through all of these things, while still in a relationship with a SP / P / N…and afterwards. I wish it never happened to begin with, but I am going to learn and move to a better path now!!



Even at the end cost, I still prefer to know the truth, it may hurt but for me, I find I can deal with it better, other wise it does my head in. I think that they all know what the consequences will be which is why they lie-even in the face of solid proof. I once saw a documentary about people on death row, lots of them admitted to being guilty but would never say it with the courts, their reasons were almost identical ‘Some stage in the future a loop-hole may become available’ so they deny & deny……Mind boggling isn’t it?

Yes I agree change & acceptance of evil is very hard and we all find strengths we didn’t know we had, but at what cost!? Like you I wish it didn’t happen to any of us.For me part of the cost was loosing my faith, trust & belief in humanity, this time, I am not sure if I will ever get it back.

Wishing you peace and blessings on your path

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