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By | March 3, 2011 41 Comments

Fake psychologist convinces mothers to abuse their children

Steven Demink, 41, of Michigan pleaded guilty to six charges of sexual exploitation of children. Demink targeted single women on dating websites, and posing as a psychologist, convinced mothers to sexually molest their children while he watched on webcams.

Read Michigan man Steven Demink conned moms to sexually abuse their own children: authorities on NYDailyNewscom.

Officials: Man persuaded moms to abuse kids on MSNBC.com.

Story suggested by a Lovefraud reader.

Posted in: Laws and courts

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Distressed Grandmother

This sent shivers up my spine! How can a mother be so vulnerable what kind of power do these paths have. That guys eyes are the same as my daughters spath. There has been reasons to believe sexual abuse is happening to my grandchildren but the children need to talk to someone else but me. This spath seems to be able to cover his ass and make it sound like the child is making this up because he wants to be with me. This just makes me sick to think after all I taught my daughter about sexual abuse that he could involve her too. God save them all.

Ox Drover

I saw a 20/20 or dateline about a con man who got a manager of some convenience store to strip search a young employee in his office, pretending to be a cop….the girl eventually received a large settlement of course, but there isn’t a zillion dollars that makes it worth it for what she went through….just unbelieveable…and when I read this one I felt the same way. It is one of those WTF? moments like the psychology experiment where the people were supposed to deliver “shocks” to someone in another room that answered questions wrong. “What would you do” another TV show recently redid this, of course NO shocks were really being delivered but the person delivering the Fake shocks didn’t know that, they only heard the person “receiving” the shocks begging for them to stop, but with very little prodding they FOLLOWED DIRECTIONS and kept on shocking the “victim.” It is amazing just how far people will go to “follow directions.” Just like the Nazis saying “I was just following orders”—yea., right! But what would I DO? Would I follow orders or would I rebel against them? I wish I knew for sure what I would do. I know what I HOPE I WOULD DO.

lesson learned

This is an interesting story.

But I can’t HELP but wonder about what these women were thinking or not? This I don’t understand.

I”m not at all suggesting that this wasn’t HIS doing and orchestrating, but it’s so extreme….If someone told me to engage in ANY sexual activity, particularly after having met them off a dating site or whatever…..I would be the woman that called the authorities……….it’s the engaging in sexual acts with children that is appalling…..

So what were his hooks into these women that would have allowed them to go ahead with such a thing with their own children? There are details missing that might help make better sense of all of this….wait that’s stupid, because it DOESN”T make sense….

This is just horrible.

LL

Distressed Grandmother

Lesson learned
I’m with you on this one. I would have to be in there shoes to believe that one. On the other hand I see what my daughter is doing and how she changed for the love of a man. This man had some power over these woman that we do not comprehend. I would have to believe that no one could have that kind of power over me either. Being a Vitim myself I protected my kids very well. I didn’t even trust my mates specially with my daughter. Not because they were capable of such things but it was a fear instilled in me from my experience. It would be interesting to follow this case and see how he did this. I believe what I read and that is that spaths are great big bullies with little mentality but yet they have to be feared because we do not know which spaths are willing to cross the line of the law and which ones just want to torcher us.

lesson learned

DG

Although an extreme case, I think it’s important to point out how our own vulnerabilities are hooked by a spath. I would be very interested in knowing what THEIR issues were that they would trust someone like this, and what HE was able to to do to GAIN that trust.

It is unfathomable to me. Repulsive, disgusting and HEARTBREAKING. Having said that, so is adultery too though. What were THESE WOMEN’S deal breakers? Where did the moral compass fall apart on that one?

What’s repulsive to one is not another? It’s scary too when I think about that…
Wouldn’t those mothers fall under the category of child molesters? I KNOW without a doubt I could NOT and would NOT be talked into such a thing. How were they? Because nothing else about the story about the victims, their circumstances or his way of “operating” are available, I guess the rest is mere speculation. It would be VERY interesting to read more about it though.

LL

Stargazer

WTF? What kind of mother would do this to her child?

Annie

Stargazer, I’m with you on that one.

I hope that all the recent articles Donna has been posting of children abused by women will really help to raise awareness of the existence of female socio/psychopaths – and help everyone learn how to recognize it.

And also to recognize the power of influence and suggestion. I find it interesting and very very sad that the article headline is written in such a way as to only implicate the male as the primary perpetrator, and even on here that goes by without question by most people.

I’m not sure how feminism got so far in advancing women’s equality – everywhere except in our recognition of their culpability in the commission of crimes. Either they’re equal, or they’re not, in my books.

If you look at Bloggert’s site (female-offenders.com) you’ll see that there are lots of examples of exactly this type of thing – either initiated by mothers/women alone, or with partners of either gender.

I’ve been searching for a particular article on his site, but haven’t found it yet, of a similar situation in Britain. Those articles re: that situation made it clear that all of the abusers involved – including the mothers – were of a similar mindset, equally culpable, *and found each other* online. But the one article I’m looking for had a wonderful quote by a policeman involved in the case re: the involvement of the mothers. It went something like: “Most mothers would take a bullet to the head before they’d ever do anything like that to their children.” These women willingly did it without a second thought – on camera for a stranger they’d only met online.

We need to get over the idea that, just because a man and a woman are involved in perpetrating a crime, that the man is always the perpetrator and the woman is going along for the ride or has been coerced.

Most of you outside of Canada probably haven’t heard of Paul Bernardo and Karla Homolka. They kidnapped, raped and murdered at least three young girls (including Karla’s younger sister Tammy). Karla got what was refered to up here as the “Deal with the Devil” of 12 years in exchange for her testimony against her husband. But a very sizable number of people (probably most) feel that it wasn’t Paul but Karla who committed the murders and was the ‘mastermind’, or at least that they were equally culpable. Unfortunately, because of unexamined bias such as we find in this articles headline, Paul is locked up for life, but Karla is free with a new identity, three vulnerable unprotected children, and is rumoured to sell baby clothes online and run a daycare.

Distressed Grandmother

LL
These women could not have had the same vulnerabilities and he had to have chatted with each and everyone of them for some time to figure out what was there vulnerability. I am not a spath and very new at this. I do not understand how they manipulate one to believe what they do. I have seen this in my daughter. Two and a half years ago if I would have told her what she is doing right now is right she would have told me I’m crazy. That man has manipulated her into doing things she know are wrong but act like it doesn’t matter he is right he is God. These are the kind of horror stories that hit close to my heart. I worry about what is this guys limit. Why can he not see his own sons. Why does his ex wife have a restraining order against him. This criminal is protected by our Canadian rights act. I am not allowed to know the answers again until it is to late then they will let me know everything in a court of law. Those woman are child molester. They should get charged. God gave us all a mind and yes he also made us vulnerable. Some of us pay the consequences for things we did not do, or were not our fault like the children this case and a lot of my spath friends but a good mother protects her children l like all of you have. If my daughter ever did this to my grandchildren I think she should pay the price. She now’s right from wrong. She is choosing to do wrong for the wrong reasons. Brain washed or not it does not make it right. I am Vulnerable right know to does that give me a right to get rid of this guy? No not at all it would make me as rotten as him. I do not think the law would say the poor guy drove her crazy let her walk.

skylar

Although these actions seem unconscionable to me, I have to wonder how far I would have gone for my spath. I went further than I ever knew I would, that’s for sure.

But I never hurt another person. Did he test me for that ability? did I fail?

He sent a trojan horse spath to marry my sister. She had no problem getting turned against me, trying to orchestrate my suicide.

Still, I’m not taking credit for my “superior” character. My N-parents taught me to be self-sacrificing and my spath sister to be selfish. N-parents often do things like this. They have a golden child and they have a scapegoat.

It was luck of the draw that I was scapegoat, I think. Thank God. I would not want to be a spath. It’s too horrible to contemplat.

lesson learned

Sky

Me too. Scapegoat. Spath sis, golden child. Go figure.

I can tell you with every FIBER of my being, had my spath asked me to participate in ANY WAY in the ways this man did. Nuh uh. In fact, I may have run sooner.

I had my suspicions about him when he was talking the way he was about his developing daughter. It made me sick. At the time I just thought it was a man who was proud of her, but the things he said kept getting more and more weird. I couldn’t hear that shiat anymore.

I think DG makes a very good point. We are all taught right from wrong and make our decisions, but for GOD”S SAKE these are CHILDREN here. Helpless BEINGS. My son who is the recovering juvenile sex offender has talked with me MANY times about WHY he did what he did. He said he KNEW it was wrong. Thank GOD his victims were no younger than 13, but that’s damned young enough!!! This article said that the children ranged in age from 3 to 15. UGH!!!!

Just like this man KNEW what he was doing was wrong and didn’t care, the WOMEN, I BELIEVE, KNEW what they were doing was wrong too and with the stigma attached to sex offending and sexual abuse of children, given how WIDELY prevalent it is now known, even TREATED in young offenders and with all the community support for protection, etc, even in the schools, how the hell could these women THINK it was even REMOTELY okay?

I just don’t buy that. I can’t fathom that. I just can’t. The thought of even THINKING about that with regards to this article is beyond sickening to me.

NO way, if my spath had wanted that, NO EFFING WAY!!

LL

one/joy_step_at_a_time

sky, LL – and anyone else interested in scapegoating and the intersection with religion and evil:

i heard this fascinating interview the other day. I hope you can get this where you are:
http://www.cbc.ca/ideas/episodes/2011/02/28/the-scapgoat-rene-girards-anthropology-of-violence-and-religion/

if the link doesn’t work, google René Girard + CBC.

Annie

one/joy,
Great link – thanks for for posting that one. I normally listen to the CBC and would have caught it, but lately I’ve been taking one of those “mental health breaks” i.e. don’t watch or listen to the news, read newspapers, watch scary movies, listen to despressing documentaries, etc…”. I leave the radio on Classical music all day. And it seems to be helping. But then you miss wonderful programs like this.

I think the concept of “scapegoating” is such an important one. I think that’s how the spaths get away with what they do; I think that’s one of the core ways they work. Because they rarely work ‘alone’ on any victim – they almost always (except the purely violent ones, and even them to a certain extent) get everyone around the victim to support &/or perpetuate the mobbing behaviour.

Oh, and LL, it was what you said much earlier “I KNOW without a doubt I could NOT and would NOT be talked into such a thing. that brought to mind that quote from the policeman.

And DG, from what I’ve heard you say, if it were asked of you personally, I believe you would respond the same way LL has. Your daughter, on the other hand, sounds like she’s more open to crossing all kinds of boundaries and not much concerned about how her children or others get hurt when she crosses them. But I think I get your point – that if she were ever to do something like this it wouldn’t be because she’d thought of and instigated it.

Skylar, excellent point about the ‘benefit’ of having been the scapegoat ourselves. It’s only been in the last year that I’ve realized that, being the prime target of the abuse in my family, I was much less a victim than my younger brother who was the ‘golden child’ (or at least that he was a victim just as much as I was). It’s only since I realized that being the golden child means you’re the one who’s picked to be trained to take on the mantle of “the abuser” that I started to be able to feel pity for my brother. That’s probably easier for me because looking back he wasn’t ‘predator’ material, but my mother was determined to ‘train him’ anyway. And keeping yourself separate, and your mind clear, is easier when you’re the target of violence than when you’re the target of ‘sweet words’ and little prompts to ‘just go over this ethical line because there’ll be a treat for you if you do” behvaiour.

Still doesn’t mean I’m going to break NC with any of them though.

kim frederick

Thanks One joy. Good stuff.

skylar

Thanks One Joy, Rene is THE shitz! I’ll listen to this a little bit later.
His works (recommended to me by Kim) are what opened my mind to the way the spaths work. I already understood that they were infantile. What Rene added was a deeper understanding of envy and subsitution, aka scapegoating.
Annie, interesting concepts.
The mantle of the abuser is the same as the mantle of authority, since the powerful one is usually the abuser. This ties in with the way that spaths are always trying to wear another’s skin and usually it is that of an authority or one that they perceive as authority. In the article about trauma bonds, identifying with the abuser is part of that power struggle. http://www.healing-arts.org/healing_trauma_therapy/traumabonding-traumaticbonds.htm

So the abused sociopath goes on to become his abuser, but rather than fight with the original abuser for power (which he can never win), he finds someone who resembles the abuser, but who doesn’t have the power to win. In this role reversal he can relive his agony but from the other side.

My exP told me I reminded me of his mother. I look NOTHING like her. She was a large, fat german woman. I’m small boned, petite, with dark hair and eyes. HUH? Also, he refused to let me go to his father’s funeral. (whom his mother had divorced 20 years earlier) These were RED FLAGS but they went into the WTF? bucket. In the end, when he was in the process of trying to destroy me for good, he also attacked his mother verbally. He called her every name in the book – out of the blue and for no reason.

In truth he identifies all women with his mother

candy

Sky, I can identify with your observations. Mine was the same.
‘So the abused sociopath goes on to become his abuser, but rather than fight with the original abuser for power (which he can never win), he finds someone who resembles the abuser, but who doesn’t have the power to win. In this role reversal he can relive his agony but from the other side’.

Stargazer

You know, parents can come up with some of the most bizarre justifications for sexually abusing their children. They are “teaching their children about sex”; they are doing it “for health reasons.” My mother and stepfather showed my younger sister and me a porn film when I was 15 and my sister was 14. I later asked my mother why she did it. She said she would rather I see it at home than somewhere else. She actually thought she was doing us a favor. The 4 of us all sat and watched it like we were watching a Disney movie!

Later down the line when my mother wanted to be close friends with me, this is one of the images that would pop up in my mind. And I just can’t be friends with someone who is or ever was that sick. Really, WTF????

Ox Drover

Guys here is bloggerT’s website “female offenders” and it focuses on the FEMALE sexual offenders —-of which there are as many or more than male sexual offenders—-so it might answer some of the questions about the “WTF” feelings we have about this above story of “how COULD it happen?”

http://female-offenders.com/

There are just so many things that we “have eyes and see not” or “have ears and hear not” with the evil in the world. It is depressing to realize it is there, but not seeing it doesn’t make it go away.

Like Annie said about “taking a break” and not ruminating all the time on the depressing things in this world, but also enjoying the good things that are here as well. We sort of have to have a mix of admitting the bad things are here, but also enjoying the good things that life has for us.

skylar

But Oxy, I was so HAPPY when I had my head in the sand! 🙁

lisaptrn

I am sorry but I know this is something I would never do. Just won’t happen…I am too protective of them and just love them too much to do such a thing. And these women were clearly more in need of a man than they were loving to their kids! My personal motto is covet and crave for little mostly in the area of money and material things…this way no internal greed will lead to decisions not based on moral structure.

And these women who meet jerks online and move them in with kids in the house are out to lunch. Not only are they putting their kids in harm’s way but also setting a bad general example for the kids where the sanctity of marriage is concerned. I don’t care if a KISA showed up on my doorstep complete with horse and said “live with me” I would slam the door in his face.

WTF is wrong with some people?? How in the world can these women justify ingratiating a pedophile on the net (which was obvious) let alone sacrificing their own kids? More sadly, how will their kids?

Ox Drover

Sky, “head in the sand” is sometimes more comfortable than reality-ville for sure!

Lisa, I wish I knew the answer to all the evils of the world, or what is even POSSIBLE….sometimes there are just things that happen that are so unbelievable and evil that it staggers us to think about.

schnoodle64

This story absolutely nauseates me!

I thought it was VERY STRANGE that I found photos on my Spaths phone that he had taken. They were of his son and his son’s friends, while they were sleeping in a bed. Who the hell takes pictures of sleepovers with friends while they are sleeping and keeps them on their phone???……UGH!

Again, to be on the outside now looking in and/or back with a CLEAR HEAD, what kind of fool was I not to say WTF at that time…..I was definately in some kind of trance or hypnotic state of mind.

Just fricken weird………SPATH = SICKO!

one/joy_step_at_a_time

excuse my language, but my spath is a ‘star-fucker.’ she is always pretending imagined connections with stars.

she pretended to be a marriage counselor, and had a famous couple in couples counseling. they broke up.

she later used photos and the info she stole from them to steal his identity online, and pretend to be him. she got away with it for quite awhile.

she them used those photos as photos of friends, family, home and animals of another set of imagined characters. using them, she conned a woman on phone and online (like she did me) for 18 months. the fake guy fake died in that con also. She then MOVED INTO THE DUPE’S HOUSE and went on vacation with her. the dupe’s freinds figured out something was so wrong, and booted her out. taped it too. it’s on youtube now, and the dupe is suing the sorry ass spath for fraud. TOWANDA!!

skylar

One Joy,
do you mean she actually counseled a real couple that just happened to be famous? Did she counsel them online?

If I were you I’d jump on that bandwagon.

Ox Drover

Hey one, post the U-tube URL I will watch that even if I have to pay extra for it! (((hugs))))

one/joy_step_at_a_time

hey sky – she counseled a real couple BECAUSE they were famous. in real life.

she’s ambi – dexterous – she does warped spath world online AND off!

one/joy_step_at_a_time

.

Ox Drover

I watched it….and went to her blog and read it…what is left of it, not a lot there really, but interesting! Nice being able to see the photo of her on the U-tube thingie. It was also interesting to read the book the “Night Listener” and to sort of see how that all fits together to make sense.

You know it is interesting how psychopaths can latch on to famous and infamous people both on line and off line…the problem is with these creeps is that there isn’t much you can do to them unless you can get them sent to jail, suing them is futile as they don’t have a “pot or a window to throw it out of.” (head shaking here!)

raggedy ann

I think if I were a single mother with an autistic child, I would be lost and exhausted, and would end up with a possibly damaged moral compass from living in a bizarre and surreal world nothing in my life had prepared me for and which hardly resembled any of the promised joys of parenthood. If I were young and/or stupid enough I might end up letting some charming authoritative “expert” convince me that these mistaken acts would be helpful or even crucial (I don’t doubt that this guy framed this stuff this way) for the development of my child.
These women, or the majority of them, certainly were unlikely to have been driven to do these things out of any desire they had themselves, or even any desire to please this fake psychologist, nor any desire to knowingly make “child pornography”, the charge one of these women pled guilty to. I imagine this guy spent considerable energy or time persuading these mothers to engage in this unorthodox “sex surrogate” “therapy” or whatever terms he might have ended up using. (sex surrogacy is a real thing, but obviously it is not supposed to happen between family members!)

How many lives has this monster ruined now? Overly trusting, confused mothers struggling to cope with a difficult life situation (at the very least the ones mentioned who had seriously special needs children), in prison now, having lost their children, labeled as sex offenders — and these vulnerable children have lost these mothers, who were probably the people most devoted to them on the entire planet, flawed as their care might have been. (And without this separation, obviously these families had to have been harmed by the acts that took place between the mother and child.)

Perhaps I myself lack a moral compass (it’s hard for me to see it that way, though), but I feel at least as terrible for these women as for these kids. Perhaps if I knew more about these cases I would change my mind. But as much as I longed for motherhood in my life, I thank God I was never, ever tested to this degree.

It’s just a devastating story. If this devil has truly taken responsiblity for what he did and genuinely feels remorse, I hope he will plead for some leniency for his various dupes.

Ox Drover

Dear R-ann,

You have more compassion and caring in your little finger than he has in his whole body or ever will.

Glad you are here at LoveFraud…thanks for this very thought provoking post. You are right…I think…it is a SAD situation all around. Lose-lose.

lesson learned

R-Ann,

That really was a very thoughtful post. Media sensationalizes things often without much detail. Perhaps with more information, complete with details it might be more understandable.

Thanks for providing a different perspective that provokes thought.

LL

Transformed

Just one more reason I am having a difficult time finding help out there! Talk about making you paranoid to find a therapist. Prison is not enough for this guy.

raggedy ann

Transformed, if you find your therapist through your insurance and check out their credentials to what degree possible on line, you should be fine. These women bumped into this guy on a “single parent” dating website, did not meet him in person, and he was a car dealer and bank employee. So encountering this level of charlatan is hopefully unlikely for you. LF also has a link for finding professionals, did you see it?

Lesson Learned, and Ox Drover,
Thanks for your words on what I said. I don’t know if I am part criminal :-(, but I often feel terrible for people I see in legal trouble, and am fairly mindful of the “there but for the grace of God go I” possibility. I even feel for pedophiles who are cursed with an affliction they simply may not be able to transcend (and in the case of males, add this to a much bigger sexual drive than mine) and who do not have the luxury of being able to act on their urges without causing harm to others or risking harm to themselves.
I am unable to have empathy for liars, predators, sadists, bullies, socio/psychopaths — though in an abstract way we all pity them, no? — nor for pedophiles who pursue their urges rather seeking help or avoiding children. And I want the guy to rot in hell, but not before he tries to fix at least a little of what he has done. I doubt his lawyers would permit it. 🙁

I wonder if I will be showing up here with a pattern of “devil’s advocate” comments about transgressors like these women or even worse people. It’s not why I am here or why I read LF, though!

I thought a little more about what I said about these women’s “desire to please” this internet acquaintance “therapist”. I think to some degree there might in fact have been an element of this, like it would have been hard to challenge his ideas or insitence that this recommended therapy can’t wait until “later” — but still I can’t imagine these women were thinking “this guy wants me to sexually assault my child and produce some child porn, and if I don’t, I will lose him”. More likely they had a complete illusion of a bond with this guy and that translated to an inappropriate amount of unquestioning trust. I am very curious about these women’s ages and backgrounds, for instance, educational. And obviously exactly what acts with their children they are being prosecuted for.

I was also wondering if some of these mothers are involved with helping their child bathe or dress or other things that involve the necessary abandonment of barriers that are considered healthy in parent-child relationships where autism or other special needs are not part of their life.

Ox Drover

Dear R-ann,

I think you have my dear one of the things that many of us have an EXCESS OF EMPATHY and being able to see the other side of the coin. The problem is, it allows us to excuse this bad behavior and to hang on to a MALIGNANT HOPE that they are going to be able to see the light and change and reform and grow a conscience.

Unfortunately, it isn’t going to happen.

I too feel for these pathetic women, and I think what the man did is to use their vulnerabilities and their normal desires for a male companion to use them to get what he wanted. He didn’t start out saying “take naked pictures of your kid” he worked up to it. He used the fake photo of the handsome man and the lure of holding out a relationship with the mothers who were probably deprived of normal male/female relationships because of having an autistic child. There was a story from England recently about a woman who met a soldier on line and sent him tens of thousands of dollars and fell in love with him etc. and it was a Nigerian SCAM ARTIST who had conned her….a bit at a time…until she was BANKRUPT!

People believe what they want to believe.

A book that I t hink might be very good for you to read is “a mind of its own, how your brain distorts and deceives” by Dr. Cordelia Fine, you can get it off of Amazon or B&N used for a few bucks and $3.99 shihpping and it is an EYE OPENER about how we deceive ourselves to believe what we WANT to believe.

So, anyway, it’s okay to be empathetic, it makes you a caring and wonderful person, but it can also make you very gullible. I am learning to be LESS gullible. (((hugs))))

raggedy ann

Yes, I have had to learn through experience that certain types of people (and their behaviors) will not change. I wish I’d had LF to read during some of these experiences, in fact — I would have learned so much more quickly. But certain kinds of people CAN change to a degree, and I have seen it happen. But like most of the people here, I am no where near as trusting as I once was.

I do believe that I have some elements of borderline personality disorder (also have depression/anxiety issues, and serious mood PMS), so when I hear of people making certain mistakes or out and out doing wrong, I often, depending on the specifics, assume that their actions were driven by a great amount of distress or pain. And looking back to my younger years I can see a certain small areas of moral blankness too, so I sometimes feel for someone doing something out of ignorance or lack of guidance. And one needn’t even empathize with the slow witted and clumsy Lenny in Of Mice and Men to feel sympathy/compassion for him.

I got a fortune cookie once that said “To understand everything is to forgive everything.” I laminated it in scotch tape. I don’t know how good an example I am of forgiving, but I still say it is possible to forgive and yet remain wary (and untrusting) of the trespassor, and allow him or her to experience the appropriate consequences of their deeds. Like when Pope JPII forgave the man that shot him and then left him in jail. Most of the time, that’s the right way!

I think I wouldn’t be quite as bothered by this story if I didn’t see the consequnces of it being autistic children now separated from their primary, probably most loving, caretaker. Sure they did something horrible — out of STUPIDITY, not venality — but I doubt they would repeat it on their own ever again, and the most appropriate response, imo, in the interest of the child, would be some sort of probation, counseling/therapy, supervision, partial custody, or something like that. And if prison time is necessary and unavoidable: these women themselves are candidates for being LoveFraud readers, but they may spend the rest of their lives on public sex offender registries, classed among true pedophiles, forcible rapists, etc. If I learn they didn’t have to do this, I will honestly feel relieved.

Thank you for the book recommendation. I have definitely heard of it. I have too unquiet a mind to be a good bookreader, but I will definitely keep it in mind. I have been an LF reader for at least two years (I posted a few times as otter ballet in the past), and put a lot of stock in whatever you have to say, Oxy! (Steve is another top one) 🙂

Ox Drover

Dear R-Ann,

Thank you…but your excess empathy doesn’t make me think that you are personality disordered, more the opposite, really.

I agree there are two sides to this coin, and the children are going to suffer no matter what is done to the mothers, and I think the mothers are more guilty of GULLIBILITY and STOOOOPIDITY than malice….just like the people who send money to the con men in Nigeria and so on.

Unfortunately, most sex offenders don’t think they are doing any thing wrong…some know that it is “worng’ in society’s eyes but THEY don’t think it is and don’t care that it is wrong in society’s eyes…yet they HIDE THEIR ACTIONS—why? because they know there are consequences to getting found out.

When we do things that ARE WRONG we usually hurt I think not only ourselves and the ones we do those things to, but others around us as well. If I rob a bank and go to jail, my kids will suffer and my husband (if I had one) would suffer and my friends and other family would suffer disappointment, shame and emotional pain as well.

If I am married and have kids and cheat on my spouse because I want to have sex with some other man, and I get caught I hurt not only my husband but my kids, the entire family and the man’s family as well. Plus, instead of giving my time and energy to my kids and my family, I am giving it to my own desires and to someone who is not entitled to my time and energy. There is NO WAY I can act dishonestly and NOT hurt myself and those around me. Whether it is robbing banks, cheating on a spouse, or any other dishonest activity.

I agree there is and I think MUST be for us to heal an “acceptance” or “forgiveness” (getting the bitterness out of our hearts) but that acceptance and/or forgiveness does NOT I think include RESTORATION OF TRUST.

I think there are times that trust should be restored for the relationship to be even possible after some form of betrayal or hurt…but without a sincere change of heart by the betrayer, there cannot be a restoration of trust. How severe or bad the betrayal is would depend on how long it might take to restore that trust.

With me, if my husband would cheat one time, I MIGHT be able to forgive AND restore trust but it would take a long time to do either and I would have to SEE some ACTION that showed that he DID understand how badly it would have hurt me, and that he was genuinely sorry and wanted to make amends.

With my son C, I love him, I have forgiven him, but I can no longer trust him now because he has “said sorry” way too many times and then betrayed again and again, lied again and again. I don’t FEAR him, but because I can’t trust him to be honest with me, and not lie to me, I ‘d rather just not be around him. I don’t want to be around people that I don’t trust. I don’t hate him, I don’t fear him, I just don’t trust him to be truthful. He’s welcome to go on and live his life as he sees fit. That’s his right, but it is my right to avoid people that I cannot trust.

With my P-son, I fear him, I realize he is DANGEROUS to me. Whole different feeling toward him than toward son C, though I don’t trust either one of them.

I actually feel some empathy and sympathy for son C, as I realize what he is giving up by choosing to be a liar. He has “lost” his mother and his brother D who love him, but he is no longer someone we want around. I’m not even sure he is aware just what a precious thing he lost by ONE TOO MANY LIES. He does have a conscience, but he will over ride it. P-son has no conscience at all. He knows right from wrong, but just doesn’t care.

raggedy ann

Oxy, I’m sorry that you have had to work these things out with more than just the P-son — everything you have been through with that one is more than anyone should have to experience in THREE lifetimes if we had them.

I agree with most of what you said above. The restoration of trust thing, once you are smart enough, can become hard even if you TRY to do it (and usually one SHOULD NOT try!). A part of you is going to be semi- or sub-consciously over-vigilant around that person. And that’s usually a GOOD thing.

But as to Borderline, or even a small few other disorders, I believe high empathy or sensitivity CAN coexist with them in some people — perhaps not huge manifestations of them. My understanding of BPD is that it is characterized by extreme emotion including abrupt changes in sentiment, maybe some impulse control issues, and that fear is a dominating factor, especially fear of abandonment. I definitely don’t see those as significantly incompatible with sensitivity to others or empathy. But I am also pretty sure that I don’t have BPL as an official diagnosis, just that I showed some elements of it in some testing, and see some elements of it in myself. I WAS, in fact, diagnosed with NPD over 20 years ago, but just about any professional I’ve encountered since then has insisted that I don’t qualify as having it, though again I can see a few elements of it in my past self.

(also, my understanding is that fear anxiety and the ability to physically experience them correlates significantly with development of “conscience” and inversely with sociopathy — but possibly my own education on it is a bit outdated and I should read the more recent Hare and Cleckley etc. books — college for me began 30 years ago!)

Ox Drover

Dear R-ann,

I think everyone in the world has done some “nasty” things or some “hateful” things to one degree or another, but having an excess of empathy I don’t think goes along with NPD either. LOL So we all have to one degree or another those TRAITS though, and so I think it is the ONGOING PATTERN of our behavior as well as our insight or lack of insight and or empathy which characterises PDs

FEAR alone I don’t think is all that makes up BPD though people with BPD do have some abandonment issues someitmes and can jump from “Zero to sixty” emotionally from I love you, you are my best friend to I hate you I want to kill you, to back to you are my best friend in the blink of an eye. But I also think that as victims we sometimes experience those mood swings as well. Humans are pretty complex creatures.

I try to educate myself about psychology but also about myself as well…none of us fit a perfectly square hole, and I don’t think the psychopaths do either, there are a lot of over laps in just about every psych diagnosis.

It doesn’t matter to me what the “name” is or what the criteria for a diagnosis is….the thing that I go by now is is it an honest and kind way to behave? If not…then I don’t need that person in my life. If I can’t trust someone, if I can’t count on them, if they don’t like me, don’t respect me, don’t treat me well—what do I need them for? I can’t see any benefit to a relationship with them except at a DISTANCE…I enjoy being around people who are nice to me, I don’t enjoy being around people who are not nice to me…so that right there is my key. Doesn’t matter to me if someone is an X, a Y or a Z, if they are not honest with me or kind, I just don’t need them in my life.

It took me a long time to figure that out, but once I got there, it is pretty simple, really. I’ve given way too many people the benefit of the doubt and the second and third and 100th chance…but I’m not required to let other people abuse me in order to keep them “happy.” I’m pretty “picky” but I’ve come to see that as a good thing not a bad thing. I’m just not seeing myself as responsible for the happiness and well being of everyone else in the world any more. Gosh, what a relief. I can let God run the universe and I don’t have to any more. LOL 🙂

aussiegirl

Okay – I finally made myself read this one. Now I just want to crawl away and throw up…… 🙁

jeannie812

I also did “what I was told”

My husband wouldn’t let me put the baby in the car seat. He was too impatient. When I insisted he got in my face and hissed threats at me through clenched teeth with his finger poking at my nose. I didn’t put the baby in the car seat!

Nothing happened to our baby, thank goodness. But, if something had it would have been my fault. Cause people hold mothers responsible.

Imagine being bullied into something you know is wrong and then being held responsible.

My daughter is now in her later twenties and this thought still haunts me.

aussiegirl

Oh Jeannie! How AWFUL for you. What a turd….

skylar

Jeannie,
the implications are unbearable. He is an evil creature.
God has your back. Of that you can be sure.

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