By | August 5, 2009 11 Comments

Save 10% when you buy 2 or more books in the Lovefraud Store

If you’re reading Lovefraud, you probably found us because you were looking for information about sociopaths. In addition to our web content, Lovefraud offers recommended books in the Lovefraud store.

Now, save 10% when you buy multiple books—any titles you want. Also, shipping for two books costs the same as shipping for one book, so you save money there as well. All orders go out via U.S. Priority Mail, generally by the next day.

If you are planning on reading any of these books, please buy them from Lovefraud. Your purchase helps defray the costs of running this website, which are substantial and are not covered by the Google ads. Available books include:

Without Conscience
The Disturbing World of the Psychopaths Among Us, by Robert D. Hare, Ph.D.

Without Conscience is the seminal description of the psychopathic personality (referred to as sociopaths on Lovefraud). Dr. Robert Hare developed the Psychopathy Checklist-Revised, which is the best tool for diagnosing the personality disorder. The checklist from Lovefraud’s Key Symptoms of a Psychopath is drawn from this book—it’s important to read the full explanations.

Getting It Through My Thick Skull
Why I Stayed, What I Learned, and What Millions of People Involved with Sociopaths Need to Know, by Mary Jo Buttafuoco

After 17 years, Mary Jo Buttafuoco finally tells her story. In 1992, she was shot in the head by Amy Fisher, the “Long Island Lolita,” who was having an affair with her husband, Joey Buttafuoco. The first words of the book are, “Joey Buttafuoco is a sociopath.” Then Mary Jo reveals why her husband’s behavior identifies him a sociopath, how her marriage affected her, and how she escaped from the fog.

Trading Places
The true story of how Natalie Hutchison, winner of Trading Places 2006, turned her life around after a lifetime of abuse, by Natalie Hutchison and Mary Turner Thomson

At Lovefraud, we often talk about how childhood trauma makes us susceptible to abuse later in life. Trading Places shows exactly how it happens. Natalie describes what she experienced with her family of origin, and then you see how the emotional injuries she carried play out. But this is a story with a happy ending—Natalie overcomes her past, rebuilds her life, and gains national recognition for her achievements.

The Betrayal Bond
Breaking Free of Exploitive Relationships, By Patrick J. Carnes, Ph.D.

Does it seem like you just go from one abusive relationship to another? If this describes your life, you may be suffering from a betrayal bond. This is a highly addictive attachment to someone who has hurt you. But even if that particular person is no longer in your life, the effects continue, because to you, an abusive relationship feels normal. This book explains how to recognize and break betrayal bonds.

The Gift of Betrayal
How to Heal Your Life When Your World Explodes, by Eve A. Wood, M.D.

Anyone—even a practicing psychiatrist who writes motivational books—can experience betrayal. The author, Eve A. Wood, M.D., was married to a man who sounds like a sociopath. When everything fell apart, she went through the same devastation that many of us have gone through. Then she wrote the book that she wished was available at the time. It offers excellent advice for recovering from betrayal and rebuilding your life.

Just Like His Father?
A Guide to Overcoming Your Child’s Genetic Connection to Antisocial Behavior, Addiction and ADHD, by Liane J. Leedom, M.D.

If you’ve had a child with a sociopath, you must read this book. Written by Lovefraud author Dr. Liane Leedom, it is the only book available that specifically addresses how to best raise children who carry a genetic risk of antisocial behavior, addiction and ADHD. Parenting can make a difference in whether these risks grow into disorders. Do not wait. The sooner you start—even when your child is an infant—the better your chance of success.

Overcoming the Devastation of Legal Abuse Syndrome
Warning: Protracted litigation can be hazardous to your health, by Karin Huffer, M.S., M.F.T.

Do not let the title of this book fool you. Yes, the legal system often adds insult to our injuries by allowing the sociopaths to get away with their predatory behavior. Inappropriate and outrageous responses on the part of those who are supposed to protect us can affect us deeply. But Legal Abuse Syndrome is more than a guidebook for dealing with court battles. It offers eight steps to recovery for blaming appropriately so we can heal, whether we’re involved in legal actions or not.

Hi Gorgeous!
Starry Eyes and Toxic Lies, by Melissa K. Dean

She met him on the Internet. He told her stories designed to tug at her heartstrings and generate sympathy. It worked. Melissa married the guy, and then slowly found herself exploited—financially, emotionally and sexually. Reasoning didn’t work. Being supportive didn’t work. Eventually, Melissa realized that in order to save herself, she had to escape.

Go to the Lovefraud Store.

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These are GREAT books. The only other favorite I have is the little known (I think) book called The
Emotional Rape Syndrome. Wonderful!!!

Also see


I just got the book 🙂
What a library I now have!!
from the first pages, I knew I had to have it.
And then – I keep returning to: what is the legal system doing to address Emotional Abuse? It is not even prosecutable. Or – is it?


I don’t have a credit card because i am too poor, but when i get one this will be my first stop.


Tilly – Don’t worry credit card’s make us all poor..But I will take a check!!


No, I don’t think the legal system is addressing emotional abuse, the criminal justice system is still working on getting it right on physical abuse!


Here is another book I HIGHLY recommend.
When You Love a Man Who Loves Himself by Keith Campbell.

Although it deals with narcissists, as we know, a narc can do very deep emotional damage. It is an EXCELLENT book for anyone struggling with questions like “But I thought he loved me”…read esp. pages 100- 104.

And also anyone who is struggling with “Why is it so hard for me to get over him?”

“Whose fault is it?” “Can he change?” “Should I stay or go?”

If these are the questions gnawing at you, this book will help a lot. Very easy to read. Very credible author.


LOL, My Non-P but definitely Narcissistic ex spouse said yesterday that both of his kids look exactly like him. to which I happily replied: “yes, I am just raising them here”. It was so funny that the now mature teenagers and I laughed hard and he was left pondering what it was that made it so hilarious.
A nonmalignant Narcissist is a breezer compared to the P horror of what I’ve gone through.

Emotional Rape book seemed to touch upon each of these factors, but in my view – he was terribly general in most points. Yet, I enjoyed the read and recommend it…


PInow….I think the Emotional Rape book is great if you are blaming yourself and also if you need validation that something AWFUL happened to you. When I read it, it was a huge relief to me. And to know that a “sudden reversal” is a key factor in identifying emotional rape was very validating. And the author so made me feel I was NOT to blame, even if there are certain traits that a P or N target, and thus things we can do in the FUTURE to better protect ourselves.

Regarding my comments above about reading “When You Love a Man Who Loves Himself” if you are struggling with “Why is it so hard for me to get over him?”….I want to add if you STILL keep struggling, then read The Betrayal Bond. When obsessive thoughts start to return, I dig out my copy and start reading again.

Sorry you had such horror PInow.


Hello all. This is my first time posting, but I’ve been reading a lot of the posts and learned a great deal in the last two months. I was already deeply working on my own recovery from co-dependency issues over the last 20 years (I’m now 47), but the information here at took me to a new level in gaining greater perspective about my last relationship. From the beginning, it was a very different relationship than any I’ve ever experienced — I once told someone that knowing this man had changed my DNA in some ways. I’ve since come to the conclusion that I was in fact dealing with a Narcissist.

Interestingly, beginning about 6 months into the relationship, this man loaned me money for my new business. He gave me thousands in cash at a time, and I insisted that we put it in writing to protect his interests, and because I wanted to show my honorable intentions in dealings with him. I had no intentions of taking his kindness for granted, and I fell in love with him because he trusted me in this way as well as seemed so interested in wanting to spend a lot of time with me. He said he most appreciated that I am a reliable, honest, upfront, compassionate and decent human being.

It’s a good thing I’m not a Sociopath or else I would have a great way to do him for the emotional trauma he caused me during our 1.5 year relationship, by refusing to pay his money back. I am in the process of paying him back, however, because of my own values and integrity. I did inform him I will deduct some of the money I owe him, however, because I ended up giving him lots of free psychotherapy and did some work for him in other areas of his life that were beneficial to him. Even today, he seems so not worried about his money, which I find puzzling, because it’s not like he’s rich. He just said that he knows I’m a person of integrity, which is something I’ve demonstrated all along in my dealings with him and he’s seen me do so in my dealings with other people when we attended various events.

BUT…I was so appreciative that he loaned me money when I had no other resources (not even family members whom I had previously helped) that I didn’t fully understand/comprehend many of the controlling tactics and negative symptoms that crept into our relationship — his nonsense, gaslighting, taking up too much of my time, selfishness, trying to make me jealous, subtle put-downs, confusing words and behaviors, and finally episodes of physical aggression. It all caught me off guard because we seemed to have so many similiar qualities — he was reliable and I never caught him cheating, even though he’d make comments implying this and that. Over time, however, his gaminess was so anxiety-producing during a time of uncertainty when I was building my business that I couldn’t imagine how I would function. We had talked about getting married and him working with me in my business. Yet he drained my energy, did silent treatment sometimes and made me feel crazy when we’d have discussions about legitimate relationship concerns. While I often was very attentive and even asked questions of him while we were dating, he often seemed indifferent to my emotional needs and individual self, which felt very invalidating to me.

He is still in my life due to my owing him money, but I have slowly detached enough over the last few months to limit contact — we used to sleep at my house every night for the last three months. But I no longer take him seriously as being possibly “the one.” Like some of you, I was able to get to this point by taking on/”acting out” some of his characteristics, but only in my dealings with him — not projecting these crazy behaviors onto other people — in order to defend myself. I deliberately said things to confuse him like he had confused and fucked with my mind. Some episodes involved me verbally abusing and physically hitting him back a few times in response to all the ONGOING anxiety/stress he’d caused me. Other times, I used knowledge about narcissism to taunt him with words that would cause him N-injury and distress. I’m not ashamed of this because it helped me get my personal power back and because I KNOW in my heart that I started out very open to this man and had no ill intentions toward him. But after experiencing all of his moods, trance-like missteps and odd responses out of the blue, and insults to my intelligence, I felt it was better to give back some of the negativity to him than to take it out on innocent others.

If all of this sounds like I too was/am a N, it’s not true. I simply decided that I wanted to make him suffer like he’d done to me when I was confused about so many contradictory things from his end in the relationship. Now that I’ve regained some footing, I do not feel overly loyal to him as I once did because he had been so generous in giving me nearly $20 K for business, and I no longer take his selfish, unthoughtful and unkind behaviors personally.

After our last incident where I went on a date with another man after turning my ex’s request for sex down (he wanted it for him — no interest was expressed in pleasing me), I recently told him that he’s better at playing the game than I am — and that I concede that he “won.” I simply don’t have the interest nor energy to continue engaging in this pattern of behaviors in order to survive, when I clearly have the skills to work with another person in building a healthy relationship.

Yet, I am grateful for the experience because I’ve learned to practice boundaries better and gain new awareness about the reality of unconscious people who can do serious psychological damage to another if one is not careful. I plan to pay closer attention to these kinds of things and people who exhibit red flags early on like he did — now that I think more about it — both professionally and personally.

It will be interesting to see how the full progression to no contact happens with my ex, since we still talk periodically and I keep him up-to-date on his legitimate right to know when he can expect to receive all of the money he loaned me for my business. I might be playing with fire by being in touch with him periodically (since getting intimate could happen — I am realistic about this — if I get horny enough — although am trying to practice celibacy or self-pleasure if absolutely necessary). But I am also clearer in letting go of the fantasy of what could have been a great relationship had I been with someone who experienced normal human empathy.

Thank you all for your helpful information.


Just wanted to comment again on how useful the Betrayal Bond Book has been for me.

Was re-reading it today and was reminded that “blaming anger” , whether directed at yourself or at the P keeps us stuck. Much better is “healthy anger” which express limitatations….what is acceptable and what is not….both for ourselves and others.

I got stuck for awhile on “is he or isn’t he a P? Is he a good guy or a bad guy”. Steve’s blog on radar got me over that. It reminded me that the real question is he good FOR ME? or bad FOR ME? THAT question is real easy to answer! Then I got stuck on “Who is to, I realize that is the wrong question too. The right question is what is unacceptable behavior? That too is easier to answer! What will I no longer accept from others? What will I no longer accept in myself?

Reading Betrayal Bonds can make you realize vulnerabilities that P’s can exploit. As the book says, anyone can get caught in a betrayal bond. But there are things that make it easier for that to happen. I had to say “Bingo, bingo, bingo” to just about everything in that book!

Understanding what past traumas have done to you can actually make you feel better about yourself, or it did me. As in “Well, no wonder I did x” and “Well, THAT explains why I felt like that!”

I reread and redo the exercises in that book about every few months and I keep learning more.


I meant to write I got stuck on “Who is to blame” . Left out the word blame.Which I should have all along. LOL!

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