RESOURCE PERSPECTIVES: Why psychopaths feel the need to destroy us after the relationship is over

Editor’s note: Resource Perspectives features articles written by members of Lovefraud’s Professional Resources Guide.

Sarah Strudwick, based in the UK, is author of Dark Souls—Healing and recovering from toxic relationships.

Dark Soul as a destroyer

By Sarah Strudwick

Sarah Strudwick profile in the Lovefraud Professional Resources Guide

Psychopaths are known for their lack of fear, but at the same time they often have other associated personality disorders along side, such as malignant narcissism. Deep down they have a sense of self-hatred and loathing, which is why they feel the need to have a constant fix of kind loving, empathic individuals that they can then slowly pull down to their own level. It’s a bit like the analogy I put in my book, Dark Souls, where they take a helpless spider and pull the legs off one by one—just to see what happens. Why do they do it? Because they can.

So why does the Dark Soul or psychopath feel the need to destroy their victims when the relationship is well and truly over?

Many targets complain that well after the relationship ends they are stalked by the psychopath, or they continue to bombard them with emails and spam. Sometimes they will try and befriend you on Facebook, or constantly monitor what you are doing by stalking you. Even when you have moved on with your life, recovering from financial hardship, emotional stress and so on, the psychopathic personality is not happy. With their own deep sense of self-hatred, they will often feel jealous, and may be vindictive by sending you viruses on your PC or other inconveniences. It’s their way of saying, “You think you have moved on, but I will be there in the background constantly monitoring you.”

It’s also their way of bringing you down to their disgustingly low level. On a conscious level, they know exactly what they are doing and want a reaction. They hope you will hate them as much as they hate themselves. Even if you have no evidence with them they want to continue contact, and being extremely narcissistic, it’s all about getting attention, any kind of attention. What better way to get your attention than, for example, to hack your computer or send you vile pictures on your computer? What better way for them to project their vile, angry, unowned thoughts and feelings back onto their victim, so that they do not have to own them?

Psychopaths are notorious for using sneaky underhanded tactics when it comes to playing dirty, whether it is getting the authorities or lawyers on their side, or other members of the family. They will always find a way to turn the tables back onto their victims and say they did nothing, creating crazymaking behaviour. If and when the victim finally has had enough and lashes back, the Dark Soul can then say, “See I told you she/he was crazy – look what she did!”

The worst thing you can do to a Dark Soul is be indifferent to them. Since causing a reaction is their game, this creates a distinct kind of “does not compute” interference with their brain chemistry. It’s almost as if they cannot understand why no one would react to their silly games. If you can, imagine a robot about to explode. This is the reaction that indifference causes to the psychopath.

They may be thinking to themselves, “I hacked into their computer today, why didn’t they do anything?” “I sent them those disgusting pictures via email, but why didn’t they respond or react?”

Because the psychopath is so sneaky, and makes sure to do everything in a way that you know they are doing it but they cannot be caught, it’s a fine line between being indifferent to them and enabling them. They end up feeling so omnipotent, they think they can actually get away with anything.

Those who have malignant narcissism and psychopathy, or sociopathic traits or both, do understand the concepts of the law and how they will only go so far. After all, it would an inconvenience for them to end up in prison.

To some degree, let them be the destroyer, but keep evidence along the way, so long as it’s not causing you physical or emotional harm.  However, when things get out of hand, let them know in no uncertain terms what evidence you have on them, because at the end of the day all they are doing is digging themselves an even bigger grave to put themselves in. Having said that, it’s not as if they need one, because they died a long time ago.

When you have finally had enough of their stupid games, make it very clear that you have been careful enough to have collected evidence on them and give them the shovel. Trust that like all good sociopaths, they will get caught eventually from their own stupidity, and will end up digging their own graves.

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Mugged it’s so true what you said, about pull another file when you feel the urge. I can’t believe I gave so much of myself and my personhood to this ASSHOLE.

I watched the movie last night THE GOOD SON, it’s about a young boy who is a sociopath. It helped me understand why my sociopath said and did such contradictory things and helped me see my response to those contradictions. I recommend the movie. I ordered it from Netflix, it was from 1993.

I watched it with my children, they had the sociopath kid pegged right away. Hmmm.

SK I have seen The Good Son. That movie gave me the creeps. I saw it when I was a kid. DEFINITELY a sociopath son. When watching that movie, just imagine that kid growing up and then imagine we dated THAT. No wonder we got messed up!!!


Sk – my spath pegged a co-worker who was trying to con me. I told her about one incident and she said that the guy was conning me. I had no idea. It gave me a lot of insight into the co-workers motivation and once i was on LF i created a strategy for self protection against the co-worker. it worked.


Panther, exactly! You are exactly right! We DATED that! It got to be so obvious in the movie, “mommy! mommy” in the scene where there was a cliff….. holy cow, manipulative, excitement seeking, liar.

One Joy – I am amazed at how others see things we can not. I believe Donna and Dr. Leedom maybe did some work on this, or perhaps somebody else? I’m not sure, but I have learned that I am FAR MORE TRUSTING than most people. I can clearly see that now about myself.

Maybe your coworkers were teaching you the same thing?



Sk – the guy was a really manipulative jerk, it would have taken a couple more incidents for me to ‘see’ it. this was my first meeting with the guy. but the spath pegged him immediately.

it was the spath who taught me that i was too trusting. too compassionate. and now i have to glean the lessons and undo the damage and find the right balance with the new info. i am forever changed, but i need to become someone who feels the ground under her feet again, and who trusts her own perceptions. really, there couldn’t be any more evil to understand, could there? I understand that i will never be the primary partner if i am in a relationship with someone who is an addict (the drug of choice will be) and soon i will have my internal check list for n/p/s – i don’t think there is any more evil under the sun, is there?

Ooh, the trust issue. Yeah, I have that problem too. Trust and gullibility.

I feel uncomfortably paranoid when I suspect that everyone could be “evil” or “out to get me” and feel on guard all the time. That is not the world I want to live in, but maybe it’s me being in denial about the fact that I DO live in that world and just cannot handle it. I want to believe everyone is just candy and sugarplums. I blame Disney.


panther – I wasn’t raised on disney. i was raised by an n father, with an n sister and a mother who was supply/ a martyr. That will do it to. I was always the most ‘compassionate’ of the bunch. Was ridiculed for it and had it used against me also – whatever suited their momentary needs and programming/ disorder.

i actively worked to increase my compassion. we call where i went with it, idiot compassion, because it lacked discernment.


It is really sad how they want to destroy us to bits and see us unhappy even if we didn’t mean them any harm.

mine hurt me so much emotionally, then came back after 5 months again to see if he can fool me again.

they have no conscience. they have no pity. they have no humanity.

it is sad that the one to whom you did good things for does not care about you even one bit.

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