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Sheep can teach us about love and it’s pretty scary!

Last week I picked my daughter up from the Agriscience High School she attends and was greeted with a sure sign of spring. There are dozens of new baby lambs who have all just been born. They are very cute but they also look exactly the same to me. My daughter tells me that they look alike because although there are many ewes there is only one ram, so all the babies have the same dad. Even though the babies look alike and to me they smell alike, each one is unique and special to its mother.

 

Sheep live in herds and unlike some other mammals they do not care for each other’s babies. A mother sheep must bond to and learn to identify her baby among the vast herd of lambs who are born at the same time. When you consider that sheep are not very smart, this feat is truly one of nature’s miracles.

But why am I discussing sheep on this blog? The reason is FAQ #1. “Why is this so hard for us mentally?” Men and women who have been involved with sociopaths want to know why recovery is so difficult. Sheep, believe it or not, teach us a lot about that.

Farmers have known for centuries that mother sheep are selective and will reject strange lambs but lovingly care for their own. A ewe can be fooled into accepting a strange lamb if she receives stimulation to her cervix and vagina. (Please don’t ask me how the farmers accomplish that one.) Stimulation of the cervix and vagina, as happens during birth are part of what produces the love bond a ewe feels toward her baby.

Vaginal and cervical stimulation induces bonding in the mother. Blocking the sensory impulses from the pelvic region with spinal anesthesia blocks the bonding mechanism. The failure to bond after spinal anesthesia can be reversed by oxytocin injection. In fact, oxytocin injection alone can induce acceptance of an unfamiliar lamb even in a non-pregnant ewe. Acceptance/bonding is also disrupted by oxytocin blocking drugs. There is therefore strong evidence that oxytocin mediates bonding in sheep.

It appears that in mammals, the hormone oxytocin not only helps in labor by inducing uterine contractions and facilitates nursing by causing milk ejection, it is also a bonding hormone. Those women who have experienced motherhood and birth can attest to the fact that for many falling in love with a newborn is similar to falling in love with one’s mate. Men are not off the hook when it comes to bonding. They too have oxytocin, and it is important in normal male sexual function.

Scientists are in the process of unraveling the mystery of how oxytocin induces a love bond between a ewe and her lamb. What has been discovered so far has pretty scary implications for humans. Oxytocin induces plasticity in the sheep smell cortex. That means that the cells that respond to smell become very sensitive such that those which are stimulated by the odor of the newborn develop strong connections. By this mechanism, the smell of the baby is imprinted on the mother’s brain.

Another group of researchers studying rodents have actually pinpointed the molecular mechanism responsible for oxytocin’s action in another area of the brain responsible for memory, the hippocampus. Oxytocin binding to its receptor induces production of another protein pCREB. This protein acts to enhance plasticity and long term memory. The long and the short of it is that oxytocin produces a rewiring of the brain! When you love someone, your love changes the wiring in your brain. Since undoing the wiring takes time, recovery takes time.

In our book, Women Who Love Psychopaths (available April 24) Sandra Brown, M.A. makes the observation that many of the women recovering from relationships with psychopaths seem to be exceptionally trusting of others. I have to admit that that description probably fits me. Well, blame that one on oxytocin too.

Paul J. Zak, PhD, is founding director of the Center for Neuroeconomics Studies at Claremont. Has done a series of experiments in which he has shown that oxytocin is also responsible for trust in humans. Oxytocin and oxytocin receptors are found in both men and women.

What about sociopaths? They are not particularly trusting and we know they do not bond. Could the problem be oxytocin? In preliminary studies Dr. Zak and colleagues found that sociopaths may have abnormally high levels of oxytocin. This could happen if there is something wrong with their oxytocin receptors such that they are “immune” to oxytocin. Here is a great talk on oxytocin by Dr. Zak. Just fast forward to 3 minutes and 30 seconds to get past the longwinded introduction.

The oxytocin news isn’t all bad for us humans. Remember that a ewe has more than one lamb over the course of her life, so oxytocin is able to rewire the brain more than once in a lifetime. Many people instinctively know that getting into another relationship will help to erase the memory of a bad relationship. Be careful though, if you are recovering from a relationship with a sociopath, you are especially vulnerable to being victimized again by another sociopath.

The other lesson to be learned is that to heal you must get away from the sociopath. Every time you have any intimacy with a sociopath, oxytocin is released and the bond is strengthened. Any intimacy, including talking and hugging, will stimulate oxytocin release. If oxytocin is released in the presence of the sociopath you will trust and feel bonded to him/her.

For more information, see:
ASK DR. LEEDOM: FAQ #1 “Why is this so hard for us mentally?”
Why you can be addicted to a sociopath
Book Review: The Betrayal Bond
A deeper understanding of love, ourselves and the sociopath
ASK DR. LEEDOM: “I am really sick, aren’t I?”



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52 Comments on "Sheep can teach us about love and it’s pretty scary!"

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Well, that explains why I followed him like a sheep! Even after I knew what he was, when he was there I still felt the need to touch him, we were very touchy feely in the relationship. I actually FELT better when he was home, in spite of the other stresses, which I told myself were my own problem any way. Nice to know why I felt that way. That’s me all right, a lamb to the slaughter….

A poignant article for me. My daughter, my only child, just left home today to move into a flat.

Very interesting article. It explains another substance responsible for “love crack” that has been mentioned several times in the blog.

What I am beginning to think is fascinating about this situation, is that in order for all of us to heal, stripping our relationships down to the bear bone, the chemicals involved, is what is needed. I have said before, we have to make our own closure…and we do that by analyzing ourselves, and the predator that came after us.

I have been watching movies, some, with sociopathic characters. And I am finding it so amazing that screenwriters are able to put pen to paper, and thoughts to direction to actors…with all the steps of manipulation or domination involved. “What’s Love Got to Do With It” came on cable last week, so I settled in to watch it. Sadly Ike Turner, Sociopath..even worse..as I was watching, with the recognition of what he was…I became more disgusted, as my son’s father was friends with Ike. At one time, right before the final dissolution of our ongoing relationship, my ex said to me that although this and that about Ike, that Ike was his hero. Ah, but I digress….the point is, film makers, actors and such…I would love to talk to them and see if they understand all the character flaws that they are portraying? And I think to myself ‘They are really lucky if they can really see those flaws readily. I wish I had had that capability’ It would have been nice to have that capability and also not be jaded by it.

But I know about this chemical thing. I went to court a few weeks ago regarding child support. And, although I wouldn’t speak to the S..I could not resist temptation to sneak peaks at him, and I could feel hormones rush. People say that it is the heart that wants what it wants, but now, I am wise enough to know it is really hormones. SO, it really turned into mind over matter. And I walked away unharmed by the hearing.

Great article, Liane!

I’ve done quite a bit of work with getting cows to claim their offspring, and found a chemical which is commercially for sale called “O-NO-MO” which is a powder that you sprinkle on the back of any calf and put it into a stall with a cow (whose calf it is not) and she will immediately start to lick the calf and claim it as hers. I noticed too that other animals in the herd, even steers and bulls, will like a calf coated in this substance.

It appears to be the “dried products of conception” and has a “bloody” smell to me. Whatever it is, it works like magic to make a cow accept a calf not hers.

Occasionally I have had cows that were bottle raised themselves because their mothers died at birth or shortly after their birth, and these cows seem to when they have their own calves not know what “fell out of their butts.” I had one cow who had been bottle raised from 1 week, that was actually apparently afraid of her own calf and ran from it.

I had to put her in confinement, sprinkle the magic powder on her calf and then she actually tried to bite it at first (cows only have teeth on the bottom of their jaws so she didn’t hurt it) but then finally began licking it and allowed it to nurse.

Since that first time, she has been an excellent mother to her calves and there has been no more problem with bonding.

Goats not only recognize their kids by smell, but also by the cry of the baby.

I have also noticed with a herd of cattle that other cattle will go to the spot where a cow has given birth and lick up the fluids that have been deposited there. The cow will usually eat her placenta which comes out 45 minutes to an hour later after the birth.

There is obviously something in the contents of the uterus fluids that causes most mammals to want to lick their offspring. And of course nursing stimulates oxytocin production, and in humans, and I imagine in any mammal, is a very pleasurable experience.

To me, when I was nursing my children the contractions of the uterus stimulated by the nursing were very similar to an orgasm. I would also imagine that a sexual orgasm releases oxytocin, which would account for sex causing bonding between the partners.

The more I learn about the biological basis of our make up and how it effects our thinking the more amazed I am. In reading Sir Laurens van derPost’s writings about basic instincts in primitive man (the Bushmen) as well as other writings concerning the aspects of our intuition whatever it is called (collective consciousness etc).

The amazing feats of directional finding (in the dark) by the Bantu guides when I was in Africa (stars were not visible during a violent storm and we were in a small boat on a miles-long lake in total darkness except for the occasional flash of lightening) Without the Bantu guide we would have perished that night. Even the English game rangers who lived there and grew up there were lost.)

Because we (humans) are no longer regularly “prey” animals as far as other species are concerned, I think maybe we have learned to ignore our instincts about who or what is a predator. Now, for the most part, only other humans prey on us, and those have developed their camouflage tactics so that they are “invisible” to us as predators, just as in the wild, prey animals have developed various strategies to be “invisible” or appear harmless to their chosen prey until it is too late for the prey to escape.

When we were training captive raised Cheetahs to kill so that they could be released into the wild, I also noticed that there was a “self pacification” trait in the antelope that we released into the cheetah’s pens. The low skills of the cheetahs made them grab the antelope from behind and start eating before the antelope were dead, which disturbed me that they had not killed it first. However, In observing the antelope they were in such a state of shock that they did not appear to be in any pain. I know the release of adrenaline is an anesthetic and that might possibly account for it, but in treating cattle they have used this “self pacification” technique for confining them solidly so that they quit struggling. The PhD that developed this concept is a woman named Temple ????, a PhD, who also happens to be an autistic, and she has a custom made apparatus that she can get into that “holds” her securely if she feels the need for that. Interesting woman and her career has been in the humane and safe handling of livestock. Sorry can’t remember her last name, I imagine your daughter can fill that in.

The antelope would even, though not even severely injured, have no corneal reflex if you touched their eyes.

The cheetahs did eventually learn to make killing strikes and were released into the wild successfully enough to breed. The males were not as successful as the females, but the species was reestablished in that area by our release program.

We used the same techniques as a mother cat would have, by bringing in drugged antelope that could barely stand, and the cats successfully fed themselves, then we decreased the amount of drugs that the antelope were given until the cats could catch and kill undrugged animals which were released into their pen which was several acres and they had to chase them quite a ways. They also had to learn to stalk the antelope as well, because the cheetah is very fast, but for very short distances and the antelope can run very fast for miles.

So many things that I have come into contact with during my life from the wild life, to the cattle and dogs, and animal training, and the medical aspects etc etc all are coming together in my mind now–still lots of unknowns, but the picture is more clear I think than ever before.

Some of us by our not listening to our instincts and overriding it with inappropriate training, and becoming vulnerable to the predators among us, and some of us (humans) who have developed the predatory skills along with their own genetic tendency toward aggression and self-interest above all else, we have become almost two “species” that will still interbreed, not quite to the extent of horses and donkeys which will interbreed but produce sterile offspring, but maybe we are on the evolutionary path to do just that. LOL

From world history it is obvious that the Ps have “selected out” millions upon millions of people over time, so who knows what the future holds in a time of nuclear weapons, or weapons of mass destruction. Scary thoughts. I think it is time for me to think about something more positive. LOL

Righteous woman,
I have also been watching movies with sociopathic characters lately. I saw “what’s love got to do with it” yeah he is a textbook case. I also saw “all about eve” (eve is the s, how apt!) and “double jeopardy” recently. I want to ask the scriptwriters too if they know what they are portraying, because sometimes they really are spot on.

I just watched the youtube link for this article and it is really fascinating. S’s oxytocin receptors are blocked. If this research can lead to scientists being able to jump start them somehow, it would be great to see them start to feel things and have the guilt hit them all at once! If only.

In the lecture, he mentions this group of people who constantly took advantage of others in the study. The researchers had a nickname for them. He didn’t say it, but on the powerpoint slide it said “bastards” group. -Very sexually active -No concern for others etc. lol

Back in the days when my husband was a corporate pilot, he was assigned to fly many “stars” both movie stars and singers to and from Las Vegas and Los Angeles, and he got to know quite a few of them very well personally, and actually became quite good friends with several of them that lasted much longer than that particular job did.

I think from the descriptions that he gave me of several of them that they were Ps–so they might not have had to “act” too much to play the roles.

If you pick up just about any “trash magazine” that has information about the “stars” and their behavior, I think you can see that many of them ARE Ns and Ps at least as indicated by their behavior–whether it is precipitated by their status as a “star” (box office power) or if they were Ns or Ps to start with and that was what made them “stars,” the bottom line is the same as far as their behavior is concerned.

What makes me really uncomfortable about these “stars” and “sports stars” and their behavior is that it is held up as a model for young people who idolize them and want to be like them seeing that these people “get away with” that kind of behavior, and wanting to emulate them.

Mike Tyson, O J Simpson, Paris Hilton, Bill Clinton, Eliot Spritzer, to name just a few (there are hundreds I could name) people whose behavior is unacceptable in my opinion.

I’ve read some studies on the failure to bond of children, and there are several things that can cause this failure to bond. I wonder what other reasons (causes) besides an absence or failure of oxytocin receptors in Ps.

For a short time when I was in college I worked with teen-aged mothers who had failed to bond with their offspring and the children were actually suffering from a failure to thrive syndrome like the kids in WWII who were separated from their parents and raised in “orphanage” like conditions without enough cuddling. These kids actually died in droves.

We have also seen a failure to bond syndrome in the kids from Romania who were adopted here–were they give up because their mothers were Ps, and thus had an over abundance of P genes, or was it the environment in the Romanian orphanages where they were not held?

Some of the kids that I worked with were actually in appearance like kids with low thyroid hormone, though their blood levels of the hormone were normal. I never knew the long term outcome of our project to teach these girls to bond with and cuddle their babies, but I saw at the time we were doing it, an improvement in both the mothers and the babies, and in the way the mothers held the babies, how the babies responded emotionally (started cooing) and how the mothers stimulated the infants. The infants also started to gain weight and were less constipated and fussy.

I also had an “interesting” and distressing thing happen to me this week. I weaned off a calf at an appropriate weaning age, and put a halter on her, tied her up, and took her to her new owner, who did not have any other cattle. This calf actually lay down and died of stress. I have never had such a thing happen to a calf and I have handled 100s in just this same manner, but this particular calf actually died from the stress/distress. Talk about feeling like an “egg sucking dog” I really did. She had demonstrated what I thought was a “normal” sullen response when she found she could not escape the halter, by lying down and refusing to move for a while. When she was delivered to her new home, I worked with her for about an hour, stroking her and talking to her, scratching her and giving her tidbits of food that she should have liked (with molasses) and she ate and drank lying down—and lay there till she died about 24 hours later without ever getting up. Though she did not quickly lose interest in her enviornment, it provoked a stress response that caused respiratory distress from electrolyte imbalance in her system. Live and learn.

Dr. Viktor Frankl, who wrote of his experiences in the Nazi concentration camps, also mentioned that some of his fellow inmates did just the same thing as the calf did. They were physically healthy individuals that just decided to die, that they were so trapped in an environment that they couldn’t escape that they almost “purposefully” died.

Back again to the interesting things of hormones and will–both the will to live and the will to die. I have seen terminally ill patients that would continue to “hold on” against all odds of science and medicine until someone that they loved arrived to say goodbye, and then within minutes to hours, pass peacefully away. Even if they were seemingly “unconconscious” at the time the person they were waiting for arrived. One elderly patient lived almost 30 days until her daughter who was a missionary arrived from Africa. Every night at almost exactly 5 p.m. she would start to turn blue and “die” but when I came back to work in the morning she was still there, rampant infection, almost no kidney function, and every blood chemical totally “out of whack” and yet she hung on beyond what any of the medical personnel thought was POSSIBLE.

hi in regard to the bonding mine when i met him and aslo through out our relationship i though he craved affection and was very touchy feely. i thought to my self why is he like this, and i think it was becvause of a lack of affection or bonding with his mother as a infant. i dont know this for certain but its the feeling i got somehow. it felt as though he just really wanted to belong to someone or something. has anyone else had this from a s path. be good to hear. ps. i found this article fascinating and it helped me understand why maybe i was addicted to seeing him even after we broke up if i was down or upset i felt like i needed to see him to feel better, even though after seeing him usually made me feel worse the way he treated me. also our relationship ws intensly sexual in the begining and i am wondering if maybe he knew about this oxytocin theory and how it would help me get addicted to being with him and bond to him i wonder.

Jules,

BM was very needy for physical affection. I would say demanding even. In the beginning, we talked about our appetites for affection and I felt that I liked a lot but I realized later that the things I said were taken as a verbal contract. Then when I didn’t deliver, WHOA… NOT GOOD! I noticed any night we didn’t get it together… (you know what I mean) he would have a melt down within 24 hours and start attacking. It didn’t matter how consistent we had been for days if not weeks.

Of course all the attention is flattering at first but now I don’t think it was about me. It was about an addiction for him. It was not about wanting to express love for me.

I doubt they know anything about oxytocin. They just want sex sex sex. Now I understand why they say Rapists are not about sex but about control.

The picture of the farm animals is a little disturbing for me. I just want to see fuzzy CLEAN lambs. :o)

I don’t think most of them know anything about oxytocin either. But I think that on some level, they must know the effect touch and physical intimacy has on us “normals.”

So for them, sex serves two purposes. When they start the whirlwind romance in the beginning, they get the sex they want from us and they also know that we are more likely to keep trying to make the relationship work even if it causes us pain. I think that they probably have some idea too that being touchy feely causes us to bond with them(in a one sided way) even if that knowledge is a result of trial and error. Seducing all the women that they do, they must get pretty good at activating our oxytocin after a while.

Also, what Aloha said about the addiction thing on their part- I think that probably is related to their constant need for stimulation. They get bored just sitting and hanging out with us because it means nothing to them. They need stimulation 24/7. So maybe when they can’t get stimulation from us in that way or the new relationship passion wanes, they need to find a new way to be stimulated- by messing with our heads. Maybe the drama of a fight or making our lives hell can also substitute for sex in a pinch.

ariadne, righteous woman; i have seen a few movies with the same notion you talk about and i wonder ifthe producers and directors know about s paths and n s the two most recent i watched match point which i watched with my s path ex and the main character was a big s path totally he could have been any one of our exes here he used all the same tools and tricks our s paths do. it was by woody allen and ithink he must have done research or known a spath to get it sooo right get it out ladies and watch it and you will know what i mean. also the most recent i saw was the other boelyn girl about king henry wow big s path king henry and this movie really shows it so even back then they were around and the sad thing too is that his public accepted his disgusting behaviour but then if they didnt they would get thier heads chopped off so that explains a lot. but also s pathic behviour in this movie spot on go watch it too. free;i agree totally with you, what is a parental seeker, i havent heard of this but it soundslike my ex could be one. i was older than him too and worked as a child carer. thanks again.

Hi Everyone!

I have not posted in a while. Getting my life back together. I have read some of my old posts on here and wow… I am so much better than I was a few months ago. Still not 100% but much more “myself.”

I got my own apartment and I love it. Hard to be alone though and I still cry.
Have a great job that I love.
Teach a lot of Yoga
My studio is doing great.
I have been in therapy with a wonderful therapist that gets it and I am on lexapro which has been helping tremendously.

I shop for myself, I clean my apartment, I take care of my cats, I go to work and love being there. I even teach Yoga to my co-workers. This is like so high-functioning compared to where I was a few months ago.

My ex-sociopath married is “new victim” and she is so happy – she works, ( he is on welfare) bought a car and paid for the marriage (which was a trash marriage – he wore like jeans and a t-shirt to justice of the peace), he is living in a welfare motel and she still lives with her parents.

He told me a few days later that he wanted to get it annulled and that he still loves me and wants to be with me. HA then he came over and made love to me…. I was really happy because I felt like he cheated on his wife… he really is a loser. That sealed the deal for me and I said I am moving on – he really is a sociopath.

We still talk on the phone and I just pity him and his “wife” they think they are so happy together, but it is just a prelude to the hell they will endure in a few months when all the reality comes out. They are living in fantasy land right now. What a joke.

I take so much better care of myself, I give myself facials and take vitamins and drink Goji juice everyday. I am doing a total body cleanse now too. I take more yoga classes with other teachers. I eat better (oh they buy lunch for us everyday at my new job). The family I work for is very wealthy and philanthropic and treat their employees very well… like family.

I have good friends that really love me and want to see me succeed.

When the SP calls he never talks about what is going on with him. I just tell him I am happy – living well – loving life. He says how miserable he is. I tell him it is by his own choosing. Oh well… his life will just get worse and I feel bad for him – but I am not his savior.

I am starting to love myself for real.

Also.. don’t get me wrong I get waves of intense sadness and I miss the “fake him” the way he touched me or whatever, I cry and think about how “happy” he and his “wife” are having fun “in love” together. But I know it is a false happiness and a fake love that cannot last.

I cry sometimes so hard I shake like a hungry baby. But then it passes and I do something productive.

Put it this way…. I landed a great job and an humble but very clean and new and nice apartment with no help from anyone. I did it all on my own. I am well respected at my place of work and as a Yoga teacher. I pay my rent and other bills on time every month. I budget my money and balance my checking account.

I work in the financial department which accounts for millions of dollars every month so I am learning more and more about money management and how to build a stable financial life….

I laugh a lot more now.
I cry less.
I am happy when I teach and work.
I love people more.
I am much more compassionate and understanding of other people’s pain and suffering.

All in all I am becoming a much better person for having gone through all this.

I want to thank everyone on the board for posting your honesty and being here for me when I needed it the most in my life.

I hope my story of recovery can help others on the board as well.

Love and Peace to all

holehearted; great to hear you are doing so well. but you should try no contact with the ex it is the best way to fully recover. read the post about the sheep here on these pages i did and it blew me away how even talking to them or any contact activates something inside us to make the bond toward them stronger and harder for us to recover. why talk on the phone anyway do you really need that. the sheep article is great and really opened my eyes. i am no contact and it helps totally forgett about them and i think it pi…. them off even more that we dont talk to them. like they think how can she forgett about me.but good to hear you are doing so well always good to hear that.free; i think i was right i think mine was a parental seeker. thanks all.

Dear Holehearted,

Congratulations as well! Great, you go girl!

I do agree with Jules, though, NO contact–NONE, NO, NADA, ZIP, ZERO, ABSOLUTELY NONE!

This story about the sheep is a very goood scientific study on bonding and I think makes a LOT of sense from a biiological standpoint.

Aloha, animals aren’t always “clean” unfortunately, and what you are seeing on her is from her very recent birthing experience. Within a day or so she would be pearly white and clean. LOL Come on over to my house and I will put you on the “business end” of a manure fork. LOL xoxoxox Then we can make some meatloaf out of my home grown meat! YUM

Free:

I think it’s interesting what you said about star signs. When I was 19 I dated a S (didn’t diagnose him at the time). My ex-husband was a N, and then my last boyfriend a S. All of them had June 1953 birthdays, I found that interesting. I do not date ANYONE with a June birthday.

Wow…me either, Peggy. The S was a June birthday. Close in year.

Peggy, LilOrphan,

My S is a June b.day also. June 7. ’57.

Okay, this is too weird. My S was June too! (I’m VERY glad to report I’ve already forgotten the exact date.)

When I met him and learned he was born about two weeks, same year, after my ex husband–a megatronic level N–it made me nervous, then I thought: Oh don’t be silly. It made me nervous partly because another massive N I’d gone out with had had a June birthday too.

This is probably all just coincidence, but still: it’s WEIRD!

My ex-N was born in June and so was my N stepfather! AHHHHHHH

Holehearted,

I agree with the other posters who’ve advised you to do the NC thing with your ex. But, it has to be a decision you make, and something you are comfortable doing. I know for myself, contact with ex = crazymaking for me. No matter what he says, or doesn’t say, or how he says it, or whatever, he drives me nuts. For me, there is no point to talking to him. I find contact with people that toxic is just stirring up old crap and ripping the scab off the emotional wound. Besides, with my ex, who knows if what he is saying is true anyway? So, why should I waste my time talking to someone who is probably lying to me anyway?

I know it is not easy to go NC, but it does get easier as time goes on, believe me. I found at first NC was like quitting smoking. At first it was very hard, and I craved contact all the time. Eventually though, I realized how much better I felt not having this destructivenss in my life, and then I got to the point where contact with him, like cigarettes, repulses me, and I don’t crave it very much at all anymore. Seriously, it does get easier over time.

Just gotta pipe up here, as someone who has a June birthday myself – maybe the reason there are lots of S’s with June birthdays is that there are just lots of people with June birthdays in general?

I don’t think babies are born in equal amounts all through the year. I know TONS of people with June birthdays. I read somewhere that apparently lots of people get pregnant in the late summer/early fall compared to other times of year, so there are lots of babies born in May and June. I guess in the summer there’s long weekends, people are on holidays, etc. Ha ha ha.

Anyway, just had to say we are not all bad! 🙂

On a more related note – it mentions in this post that S’s might be less reactive to oxytocin and the bonding it induces than normal people are. I wonder if some women who get involved with S’s make more oxytocin than average, or are more sensitive to oxytocin, and therefore bond more intensely?

I’ve wondered about this myself before. I tend to be the type of person who bonds very strongly with anyone I have sex with, more so than average I would say. I have friends who can have casual sex and not get emotionally bent out of shape about it, but I don’t think I’m the type who can do this. I also know other women who are like me, who bond very strongly to their partners. Maybe it’s a hormonal difference?

The stuff about bonding and smell is interesting too. My ex smelled so unbelievably good to me, not because of cologne or anything. I still miss it. Damn you biology!

i know what you mean about the smell
not sure if there is a hormonal/emotional thingy that makes some of us bond…

also curious as to how many of you had your crazy creature try to get you to go to swingers clubs or nudie swinger motels/pools…..he was always pushing for that…now i think that was his way of trying to avoid cheating…felt it was justified if i was along

Even humans have a very strong sense of “pleasure” with smells that are attached to certain pleasurable experiences.

My adopted son D finds the smell of skunk scent pleasurable because when he was very little his dad used to take him hunting, and to cover his human scent, his dad would put skunk smell on his pants, so D associated the smell of skunk with a pleasant experience, though this is usually considered a BAD scent.

I used to love to go to the barn with my grandmother to milk when I was a small child, and the smell of FRESH cow manure is actually something that brings back this pleasant experience. Even though most people would find this scent “bad” it only conjures up good associations for me.

After my husband died, I went to the dirty clothes hamper and took out a shirt he had worn to work in the day before which was dirty and filled with his sweat–normally not an odor I would have relished, but I lay down to sleep that night with that dirty shirt clutched to my nose, smelling my husband’s scent and it was like a “pacifier” to a baby.

I couldn’t bring myself to wash the sheets on our bed for weeks because his pillow and the sheets still had his smell on them. I even kept the dirty shirt in a plastic bag for a long time because I didn’t want it to lose the smell of him. It finally did anyway, but that smell was so comforting to me.

We humans aren’t always as aware of the smells of our family as a sheep or a cow would be or a dog, but we still react to those smells in positive and negative ways depending on how that person effected our lives.

When we are angry, scared, or having sex, we have different sweat glands give off scents than when we are just sweating from the heat or the hard work we are doing. Those smells are a different chemical character than “heat sweat” which is mostly salt and water, and they have a musky odor.

This is how dogs can smell if you are afraid of them even if you “act brave” because your fear will give off this scent which the dog detects as your FEAR.

We humans may also “imprint” on the smell of a loved one’s perfume, shampoo, or other “artificial” scent, or the “sexy” sweat. There are so many variables to scent, and also our awareness of our reactions to it as well. Interesting stuff, biology. I think the more we learn the more we should realize that we, too, though “the hairless apes,” still have some things to learn about our on instincts and what really makes us tick besides our intellect.

Greengirl wrote:
“I tend to be the type of person who bonds very strongly with anyone I have sex with, more so than average I would say. I have friends who can have casual sex and not get emotionally bent out of shape about it, but I don’t think I’m the type who can do this. I also know other women who are like me, who bond very strongly to their partners. Maybe it’s a hormonal difference?”

Me too Greengirl, I too bond very strongly with a partner after intimacy, and often wondered how some women cope emotionally with casual sex. Also regarding smell, I found my ex’s natural scent very endearing and sexy. I’ve never had that experience before or since with anyone else.

newworld, my ex suggested several sexual ideas that he would like for us to try, including group sex. He was into all sorts of things as it turned out. When I refused point blank he tried to make a joke out of it. He was a real sicko.

I personally think that anyone who is capable and desirous of “random sexual partners” or “sex only” (without any relationship) is waving a BIG RED FLAG to not being able to BOND normally to others.

One of the BIGGIES with Ps is that many/most of them are also sex addicts with multiple partners simultaneously, or frequent changes of single partners.

Keeping in mind that in our and other cultures, adolescent males tend to be desirous of “all they can get;” in full adults, male or female, I think there is “something wrong” with ANYONE who seeks “casual” sex as a way of life.

This is not an issue of morality that I am explaining, but a “state of mind” separate from “moral issues.” Even if a person who “believes” that Casual sex is wrong and is afraid to get caught so they don’t DO it, if they WANT to do it, or DO it, I think there is some “screw loose” there somewhere.

I have noticed though in dealing with adolescents, primarily ones that had “problems,” that some girls give sex in exchange for what they HOPE will be bonding and commitment, and then it doesn’t turn out that way, and they move on quickly to the next HOPEFUL CANDIDATE for intimacy, so end up having many partners, but I don’t think it is because they are looking for casual sex as a “way of life,” they are, instead, I think, seeking commitment in the wrong way. Unfortunately, the “casual sex as a way of life” males that prey on these women who are seeking commitment and bonding, use their vulnerability for their P-purposes.

Who was talking about scent? Oh my gosh! I forgot about this. Sometimes early on…during my two weeks of euphoria, I was hugging the BAD MAN and I remember smelling him like I was a hound dog or something. I mean it was more like I was SNORTING him and then I caught myself and started laughing because I realized I ws trying to inhale him or something… like become one or something. I don’t know what I was doing but the attraction was definately chemical for me. We have used the word “intoxicating” before.

I hate now when I have the VERY RARE date and I feel almost nothing for someone and I am digging to muster up just the tiniest spark…. Nuthin’. RATS!!!

It’s funny to talk about but at the same time, it’s sad to me. I felt such a powerful connection and I would love to have that with someone but I think it is very rare or maybe… Hollywood.

What about yo OXDOVER.. you had a good husband for a long time? Is that what it’s supposed to be like? Intoxicating? or just a mild buzz?

Aloha,

It was intoxicating most of the time! We had our times when we butted heads, he was an engineer and I am an “uppity” woman, so that was a given.

He was THE most exciting and intoxicating man I have ever known, the smartest (really) and most interesting man, and lots of fun too.

He also had a very specific odor about him–it was strong at least to me (not strong like body stink, just intense) and like I said about holding on to his shirt just to smell that smell that was HIM and him alone. I even felt sad washing the sheets on our bed sometime after he died (quite a while before I could make myself do it) of course by then the smell of HIM was gone…and they did NEED washing. LOL

The P-XBF was “intoxicating” at first, and a couple of other guys I dated “way back when” were as well. Not Ps, just regular guys, but I was intoxicated at least, several of them are still good friends of mine. I tend to stay “friends” with even x-bfs, and have many long-time decades-old relationships with people I care very much about.

I’ve been on VERY few dates (I mean like only 2-3) since the death of my husband except for the P-BF, I was quickly NOT interested in any of them, not so much lack of fire works as it was lack of wanting to take on their life style, where they lived, raising more kids at my age, financial problems, etc. etc.

When you are young and “flexible” and aren’t “settled in” and “set in your ways” it is easier to “hook up” with someone without disrupting your entire life. Now we all have “baggage” in the form of homes, vehicles, debts, no debts, etc. and I’m not interested in taking on someone else’s problems like debt, raising kids etc. or some guy with 4 x wives, extremely bad health, etc. etc. so cuts down the “potential” pool to about zero. The ones I might consider who are my age 60s, could have a 40 yr old (can’t compete with that in looks) LOL so not likely I will even have too many more dates in my life, but am reconciled to that–believe it or not! And feel pretty satisfied the way things are going lately. Getting my own head together!

Thanks Oxdover. I just wanted to hear your perspective. :o)

A friend of mine left a tepid marriage, one that had long ago turned platonic, for a sociopath. She was in her mid 50s. She thought she would marry this other man. She was over the moon, then she learned he had fifteen other “fiances” and three wives on three continents, that he’d been gaming her all along, and she went rushing back to the husband. She says, “I just want safety now.”

But here’s the thing: that marriage she fled back to is safe, but it’s stultifying. You can see it when you’re with them. She carps at him all the time, he grits his teeth and endures. They both sigh a lot. What she ended up with is, of course, better than a sociopath, but maybe those aren’t the only two options–safety and sociopathy.

You and me and everyone on here have paid our dues, we’ve burned off lifetimes of bad karma (g), we’ve learned a lot of lessons. Maybe we’ve earned the right to believe that there’s someone out there who can love us and whom we can love–in a way that allows both parties to blossom, not one of them be blissed out on fantasy and the other to furtively score.

Why should these S-es be allowed to kill off the hope that someone can love us for who we are?

Stranger things do happen.

Yes, I would also love to have another wonderful relationship before I die and leave this life, but at the same time, that relationship is an ADDITION to a satisfying life, not the CONTENT of a satisfying life. It will NOT take a relationship to make me happy with the life I am living. I will NOT feel that I am somehow missing out on “life” if I don’t have a “relationship”—

The Apostle Paul recommends that we be CONTENT whatever our status is in life–even if we are a slave and there is no chance to gain freedom, be content and don’t let whatever adverse circumstances that are in your life make your life TORTURE. He does recommend if you can improve it, to do so, if you can “gain freedom” do so—and gladly, but if you are in a situation that YOU CANNOT change then be happy where you are, don’t let that circumstance ruin your life.

Are you in a wheel chair? Don’t let being in a wheel chair and wanting to walk when there is no hope that you can walk, ruin your life. Don’t sit there and say “Oh, if only I could walk I would be happy” BE HAPPY without walking. If some miracle operation comes along that gives you the ability to walk, GRAB it, but in the meantime, BE HAPPY ANYWAY.

After I husband died, I really felt I could NOT be “happy” unless I had a man to love me, now I know that I NEED TO BE HAPPY even without that. I WANT to be happy without that. I CAN BE HAPPY without that. NO dream or wish for something outside my control is going to be allowed to make me UNhappy, unless I let it.

That was the thing I could not see at first, being by myself. I thought I had to have someone beside me….it would be nice, of course, but it isn’t ESSENTIAL TO MY HAPPINESS any more.

Lesley, I feel sorry for your friend and her “sparkless” marriage, filled with bitterness and recriminations. I have a couple of friends whose marriage is like that and they will stay together forever—forever unhappy, but not realizing that they could change it, or move on. (shaking head here) and there are so many marriages like that—and it is a shame for all involved that they choose to live like that. What a waste of lives. (rolling eyes AND shaking head here) LOL

Another couple I know are finally getting a divorce after 30+ yrs of marriage and 5+ years of separation in which they still both worked in their mutual business each day. The husband just got tired of the carping and left and moved out. She continued to try to “fix” the marriage by daily telling him that “you should come home to me and be a proper husband you no good son-of-a-bitch, why don’t you just come home and love me like you should, you low life no good piece of dog crap” LOL ROTFL He would stand there in the middle of their business and not respond, not say a word, or turn and walk off with her screaming after him in frustration that she couldn’t “get a rise” out of him.

They recently sold their business and are finally dividing the assets. When people act like that you want to stand them in the corner until “they learn to behave.” All of the aforementioned people are good, kind and caring people, not psychopaths, but they don’t know how to LET GO of their own personal agendas and to work together for a relationship. They continue to hold on to bitterness for slights 30 years old and to poke and prod and continually seek revenge for those slights that are so irrelevant today. WHY? I guess maybe it is “safe” as they know what to expect, but it sure isn’t healthy or comforting or enjoyable I wouldn’t think. I’ll pass on that kind of a relationship. Don’t need it any more than I need another P in my life. If I can’t find either by accident or design some man who has a healthy way of dealing with relationships–I’ll just be happy by myself. I sure don’t want or need more grief.

Free

This was so powerful:

I did something wonderful, he never commented which was very upsetting and I felt so useless and sad. I never want that ever again and it stops with me.

A man isn’t essential to my happiness either. Happiness needs to come from within. Just like truth does. I don’t want to be in a relationship for the sake of being in one. I don’t need to be.

You are so right. There are relationships that, regardless how you feel about the person, feel as though you are really all alone – or worse, with someone who doesn’t value you as a human being at all. They’re not worth having – and more painful than being alone.

Sadly enough, I did get to the point you describe, happy with myself, ready after five years to finally try and meet someone new and create a real partnership. What happened instead is that the N came back and I allowed for it. Mea culpa.

Am not back to square one, but certainly not where I was right before he came back, in terms of relationship readiness.

And he also loved to criticize me. I told him once that’s why I so infrequently invited him over, because it was like getting a litany of what’s wrong with LilOrphan. Too judgmental. I didn’t criticize his lifestyle choices, or how he worked, or how he conducted his business or friendships. All of that and more was fodder for his critique.

Did you ever tell your S, either outright or somewhat lightheartedly, that you felt condemned all the time? And if so, did it do any good at all?

Orphan,

As far as telling a P that you felt “condemned” all the time—yes, yes yes!!!!

I wrote letter after letter to my P-son begging him to get off my back to quit sending me lists upon lists of things to do for him, that I was floundering, that I was unable to take care of myself much less do things for him, and all I got was “get up and go do it mom, you have always been the strong one in the family, you are just not trying”

I begged my BF to be straight with me, to quit with the constant crap of telling me things about me that he didn’t like. Same type of response.

I begged my P-by-proxy mother to quit demanding all my time that I needed to take care of myself, that my internal world was falling apart and I needed to take care of ME–her only concern was for herself and my P-son. To hell with me. To hell with MY needs, my health, my feelings

You might as well tell SATAN that the fire is too hot as to tell a P that what they are doing is hurting you, they, like Satan, will only SHOVEL ON MORE COAL.

Realizing the pain that comes with TRULY understanding how LITTLE THEY CARE is what makes us I think feel so worthless, so unvalued. Because the realization that we are NOT VALUED is TRUE. And, ugly truth hurts. Now I don’t NEED their validation, their “love” (if that’s love, please hate me!)

I can validate myself….who the hell needs them!?!

Oxdrover,

“You might as well tell SATAN that the fire is too hot as to tell a P that what they are doing is hurting you, they, like Satan, will only SHOVEL ON MORE COAL.”
Hahaha I love all your metaphors, but this one is just great!

It’s so true, they couldn’t care less that they are destroying you emotionally. You also get the response, “You are the one who’s condemning me!(projection) I just want to help and you never listen to anything I say.”

Once, after a hard day’s gaslighting, my S stepmom cried crocodile tears to my dad saying, “They (us kids) don’t respect me! Boo hoo” I was just a kid but I felt like laughing out loud. It was so ridiculous. The projection part is difficult to deal with because you are so busy defending yourself that you forget all about the complaint you had. I don’t bother defending myself anymore with her. When she says crazy stuff like that I seriously do laugh now. I finally get the joke.

Good Morning, Ariadne,

I’m looking out the window at weather that must have been sent to me from the Ps no longer in my life–rain, wind, with tornado warnings, and wishing the weather would let up so I could get outside and do something, so here I am!

Glad you like my little analogies and metaphors–even my mixed metaphors! I sort of have a twisted sense of humor I have been told! I think though at some time you have to, in order to survive the insanity of what you have been through, LAUGH ABOUT IT.

I have a dear friend, also an only child, whose “Jewish Mother” (they are not Jewish but she got a Jewish mother) drives her to the edge of sanity. I personally just love her mother, who doesn’t bother me at all with her “advice” because I see “through” her and I just laugh with and at her, so some of it just depends not so much on the behavior as on our reaction to it from our own past experience with this person.

If your best friend came up and playfully with no ill-intent slapped you on your back and accidentally broke your arm, your arm would still be broken, but you would not be angry with them.

If your,, in your case, say your step mother did the same thing, you would feel entirely differently.

The behavior was the same, the result was the same, but YOUR FEELINGS would be entirely different toward the person.

It’s good that you can laugh when your stepmother says things. I’m getting there most days. My P-by-proxy mother, which I have to from time to time talk to, can still once in a while “get to me”—the level of it is decreasing and 9 out of 10 days it is 0, but some days it is above 0—yesterday when I had to talk to her regarding some business it raised above 0 for a little while, not a lot, but some. That being the case, I will have to go back to having my son C deal with her if possible for a while.

As my healing has progressed their ability to hurt me has decreased. So I know that my healing is progressing. A person’s ability to hurt you is directly proportional to how much you care for them. (The “caring for” can be either love OR hate)

In my case, I have to have a little bit of contact with my mother because of mutual financial interests, and have to keep an eye on the other Ps because I know that given half a chance they would take another shot at killing me if they could.

Yesterday I contacted the governor’s office in my state, and the parole board, and the sexual offender risk assessment chief, the local state-wide newspaper also got a copy of my letter to these officials, and so hopefully instead of spending 45 days in prison for each year of sentence received, they will keep him there his entire term.

In his previous state he was given the highest ranking of “violent, habitual criminal, high risk” in my state he got a level 2 of possible 4 which means that he is “unlikely” to be violent or reoffend.

Taking one of the standard guide books for assessing these inmates the way I read it, he is VERY high risk, and VERY dangerous. It is possible all his paper work from his previous state didn’t get here, but it is also possible that our agency which has a back log of 5000+ unclassified pedophiles and other sexual offenders just didn’t have the “time” to properly review his case.

Whatever the reasons, I hope that I was able to shed some light on the subject and that the government people will understand that they have a “wild crazy bitch who will go to the media and make a spectacle” if necessary—the kind they give the grease to to SHUT THEM UP. LOL I hope my letter convinced them that if they try to “free up” another prison bed by letting someone out after doing about 10% of their time and he DOES reoffend that it will be ME on the 6 o’clock news screaming THEIR NAMES, and saying “I warned our public officials and they didn’t listen, now look what happened!”

Our previous governor let out a rapist, pardoned him yet, and within a month he had raped and killed another victim, so that “hot rock” policy is still I hope in force and will work for my case.

Have a great day!

Ariadne and OxD:

That’s where they get you – their fake sincerity. You are sincere, trying to deal with someone who appears sincere, who pretends sincere, but the entire thing is RIGGED from the word “go” because they aren’t sincere in the slightest.

So all the efforts you make to explain, to plead, to try and get them to empathize, to set boundaries with them…all of it is pointless. Because it is falling on deaf, hard ears and a cold, stiff heart.

That’s what always gets us in the end, whether it is with romantic relationships with Ps or any other kind: we’re making good faith efforts.

They wouldn’t know good faith if it hauled-up and kicked them in the ass. (And frankly, I often wish something would.)

That’s why No Contact. That’s why we’re forced to do the unthinkable (to us, unthinkable, because we have hearts and consciences) and cut them out of our lives forever. We now have Life Scalpels to wield on the new S’s and P’s that crop up in our lives. Mine is as precise as any surgeon’s. Because we dealt with someone we really loved who was like this and suffered the pain of having to extricate them from our lives forever, it’s much easier to do to someone new the first time they raise the red flags of lying or abuse or any P/S/N behaviors.

I’ve hardened in that way. Not entirely ashamed of it, either.

Like most of us when I initiated NO contact, almost against my will, it was so painful and even thinking about her (emotional contact) would send me into tears and a rage and then rage and tears for DAYS!

Now it is nothing much more than a severe irritation that lasts a few hours. More a reinforcement of what I already know. I can’t trust her. She has no repentance for what she has done. Isn’t going to change and I can never again pretend that I have a mother that loves me.

It was ONLY after I went NO contact with her entirely for several months that I actually really started to heal, to adjust to reality. Ditto with the P XBF, but he doesn’t bother me at all now, fortunately I didn’t have a life time invested with him or children. With my son, (shakes head here) I’ve come to acceptance of what he is and to me my “son” is dead–gone–no longer exists except as a memory of a wonderful little boy who left me. Or was stolen away by trolls. Sometimes I feel like his 4th grade picture should be on a milk carton with the sign “Have you Seen this Missing child, call 1-800-findhim.”

I used to say I couldn’t imagine how a parent whose child was kidnapped would feel, NOT knowing if their child was alive or dead. Now, I think I do know how that parent would feel, but at least I have some closure in that I know my child is DEAD. There is NO hope he will ever show up again. I imagine they must have to come to some form of closure too after so many years of wondering about their child, hoping for their child, praying for their child.

Yes, we are making good faith efforts, and they aren’t. Yea, my boundaries are pretty firm as well and I am NOT any ashamed of it. That’s not “hardened,” it is simply good healthy self preservation and GOOD SENSE.

OxD:

Not sure how you managed to handle cutting contact with family members. That part is tough. I believe my brother is a total and complete P, but for as long as my parents are around, feel obligated to maintain a very superficial cordial relationship. Very, very superficial. After they are gone, I intend never to see him again.

But if it were my child…well, that has to be tough.

Did you used to find yourself thinking of your child as often as you did of the ex S/P romantic relationship?

One of the hardest lessons of disconnecting from this person was learning that some days are easy and others were extremely painful. By the time a few years had passed, last time, it wasn’t bad most of the time.

This time around, I feel like it’s much faster, the healing process. Knowing what their problem is, knowing it’s like a spiritual death sentence, somehow that helped shut the door.

Orphan,

I’m not sure whether the cutting ties with a child is any different from cutting ties with a man you love, it is still a love, hope, caring relationship with a fantasy “future” and that is difficult regardless of the relationship. Of course I had a fantasy for my son, what he would do, be, etc when he was an adult, and memories of what a great kid he was when he was little and I wanted to “find” that in him as an adult. I just couldn’t turn loose, but I suspect if he had been a husband I would have done the same thing except I would not have tolerated physical abuse from a man, but did from my son. DUH–what’s the difference WHO hits you?

Actually emotional PAIN is like Dr. Frankl says “it occupies all the space available for it” a “little” pain or a “big” pain doesn’t matter IT FILLS YOUR ENTIRE BEING from top to bottom.

Sure it was a disappointment that my son turned out to be a monster, but it hurt just as much to think the man I thought might be my next “soul mate” turned out to be a monster as well…and it hurt like hell when I realized my mother was a P-by-proxy, doing the bidding of my P-son without remorse, and justifying her behavior toward me by her own twisted religious logic. If anything cutting the ties with my mother were the hardest, because I really didn’t think about her as a psychopath, until I realized she was one by PROXY, falling under the spell of the P-son so completely. I realized too that the “relationship” we had, while not perfect, was JUST AS PAINFUL and JUST AS TOXIC as the one with my P-son.

It was only after I went NC with her that I had enough peace to start to heal, that the stress level went down. That I quit trying to please her unreasonable requests and demands. Only by letting go of ALL the Ps and their proxies could I start to heal. Each one contributed to the pain in their own unique way, but they are ALL THE SAME as well. TOXIC. POISON. Like a cancer of the soul. You have to cut them out (NC), and then take the treatment which itself is like chemo, it is painful, but in the end, will “cure”you of the disease, cleanse your system, make you healthy again, and heal your soul that has been emotionally raped.

I still have my adopted son D who has been my support all though this chaos, and have my son C returned to me since he is no longer under the control and FOG of his X-wife. Having the good relationship with these two good men has been wonderful and makes me appreciate them for the wonderful men that they are. My step dad and my husband are gone, but even though they are deceased, I can look back on the relationships and draw from their strength even with them gone. If I have a question about something I can say to myself “what would daddy do?” or “how would M see this?” and if I just wait a while, the answer will come to me. And, I know it is what they would have suggested. So even though our “support” net work is gone from us in some ways, we can still draw on past relationships and the wisdom of people we loved.

Sometimes I will even dream about my husband or my step dad and they will “tell me” in the dream what they would have done. I know of course this is my subconscious working and not some ghostly visit, but it underscores and builds my confidence in myself and my own strength, as well as keeps my bond with these two amazing and wonderful men with me daily.

Draw on whatever sources of strength and wisdom you have within you from whatever source. Hold firm to it when you feel that you cannot stand that day. Be good to yourself, and the healing will come–a step here, a step there, two steps another day, one back and so on, but as long as the progress is in a positive direction you will “get there.”

Thanks, OxD.

Hate knowing that periodically he will reenter my mind and be a source of anything at all, even bad memories.

Never felt that way about any former relationship, really. It’s sad. There are times I like to just pretend he passed away. Because, well, you know, the person I thought he was? Already dead, long ago.

Very enlightening blog was concerning the chemical bonding in both animals and human being. Being a person whose interests involve both spiritually and scientific studies I find this discussion very interesting. We as a group of people as per say being both a mental and emotional creature which works on a somewhat predicable action/reaction set in both a mentally and emotionally chemical base forum. In short, we feel then we react, we think then we react. This theory is based on the cause and effect reaction. We all know that a sociopath lacks some emotions like let’s say empathy. Since the act/react i.e. cause and effect is lacking, this may be to some lack of chemical balance or chemical exchange in the brain of the “sociopath”. Knowing full well that sociopath come to be due to many factors, which includes but not limited to environment, DNA and social expectations. So that the “chemical imbalance” and or defect would not cure a sociopath, it would in fact help us understand just one of the many factors involved in explaining why a sociopath act/reacts the way they do. I, having lost a partner due to this “personality disorder” maintain some hope that we can and will find a way to treat, cure and or assist these people who may or may not be a victims themselves. Knowing full well the many dangers that a “sociopath” displays, have discover that the “no contact” method work the best when one has the ability to do so. Sadly this is not a possibility for all of us. So thru studies and research, to be well inform is to be well warned. I being a person of compassion, in effect would like to “keep” some hope alive myself. That we as a compassion and caring society can find, research and discover a way to protect ourselves but still help the sociopath and or the future personality disorders that we may find in our children due to no fault of there own. Any information on this subject is greatly appreciated. Thank you.

I finially finished reading Dr. Anna Salter’s book, “Predators” (RE: Pyshopaths and other sexual offenders) and she, who has a great, I think, sense of humor said that sometimes people look at the psychopath with more compassion than she thinks they deserve. They DO know right from wrong, but choose to do what they know society thinks is wrong anyway.

Anyway, she made me laugh when she told about a cartoon, that showed a man horribly beaten, broken and injured, lying in a ditch, and two social workers were standing over him and one social worker said to the other, “The person who DID this, really needs help.”

My own personal favorite cartoon on a psychological bent is the mother squatted down taking to a little girl about 4 or 5, and in the back ground is the still smoking ashes of a house. The mother says to the little girl “Mommie and daddy are not mad at YOU, Marilyn, mommie and dad are upset with the naughty thing you have done.” ROTFL.

My personal belief is that since the psychopath knows right from wrong, even though he doesn’t “agree” that he is responsible for maintaining compliance with these laws established by society, I nevertheless believe that he should be held accountable for the behaviors.

A person who is depressed, or manic and does unlawful/immoral acts is held accountable by law for their behaviors UNLESS they are not in touch with reality (legally insane). Even a child under the age of 18 is held accountable as an adult if they are old enough and smart enough (and not legally insane) to know right from wrong.

Dr. Salter, in her book Predators talked about “blaming the victim” COMPLETELY for children who were molested by adult men—it was commonly accepted in the professional psychological community that these children were acting out sexually, even if they resisted, and that they had SEDUCED the adult male involved. In some porfessional circles it was still being preached to blame the victim as late ad 1990. DUH! How can an 18 month old chld “Seduce” an adult male.

Some of the 1930s rationale for this was that the child didn’t “resist and run away”—but this criteria was NOT also put on the back of the adult male “victim” who could also have “run away.” DUH! Even if the child DID resisit and run away, it was because they had seduced the strange man who kidnapped them at knifepoint, and then changed their minds.

While I try to have compassion for every living thing, when adult people choose to behave in cruel ways toward others, unless they are out of touch with reality (legally insane) I firmly believe that they are responsible for their behavior.

Alcoholics are born with a gene that makes them crave alcohol, but they have the right NOT to drink. Drinking alcohol should not enable them to escape responsibility for their behavior when drunk.

I too hope there will come a day when there is treatment or prevention for many of the personality disorders. In the meantime, though—I think all sane adults are responsible for their behaivors and the consequences there of.

Wow, this post is so great, Liane. I am resurrecting it so that all the newcomers (like me) can read and benefit from it.
SUCH GOOD INFO IN THE VIDEO!
I also found some NEW info in this short article – for the oldtimers here, but newcomers should see the video first in order to see the relevance better.
http://www.journals.elsevierhealth.com/periodicals/bps/article/S0006-3223(09)00762-8/abstract

Basically, it is relevant because narcissists ENVY EVERYONE.
This is the basis of their hell on earth. They simply cannot bear to see someone have anything – especially not happiness.

I’ve also read a theory that envy is a survival strategy that helps us learn to mimick what others do…Narcissists are natural born mirrors, we have all experienced that.

Maybe, some day we will find that this all ties in to oxytocin?

Skylar, thanks for bringing this one back. Really interesting. I tried to get to your link but it didn’t work. Hope you’re doing good today.

I can’t get the link to work so I’m going to copy and paste the short article here:
Background
Humans have a strong social tendency to compare themselves with others. We tend to feel envious when we receive less valuable rewards and may rejoice when our payoffs are more advantageous. Envy and schadenfreude (gloating over the other’s misfortune) are social emotions widely agreed to be a symptom of the human social tendency to compare one’s payoffs with those of others. Given the important social components of envy and gloating, we speculated that oxytocin may have a modulating effect on the intensity of these emotions.

Methods
Fifty-six participants participated in this double-blind, placebo-controlled, within-subject study. Following the administration of oxytocin or a placebo, participants played a game of chance with another (fake) participant who either won more money (envy manipulation), lost more money (schadenfreude manipulation), or won/lost equal amounts of money.

Results
In comparison with the placebo, oxytocin increased the envy ratings during unequal monetary gain conditions involving relative loss (when the participant gained less money than another player). Oxytocin also increased the ratings of gloating during relative gain conditions (when the participant gained more money than the other player). By contrast, oxytocin had no effect on the emotional ratings following equal monetary gains nor did it affect general mood ratings.

Conclusions
These results suggest that the oxytocinergic system is involved in modulating envy and gloating. Thus, contrary to the prevailing belief that this system is involved solely in positive prosocial behaviors, it probably plays a key role in a wider range of social emotion-related behaviors.

Wow. And P’s have more of it. That’s a surprise. Wonder how it works in new mothers? Bonded partners? Etc.

Hi Kim,
yeah, looks like they have more oxytocin but less receptors.

I noticed many people responding to this post mentioned how good their xP smelled. So did mine!! It was amazing how good he smelled, not under the arm pit smell but just overall. I’ve never known a guy who smelled so good at the end of the day. BUT, in the last few years, about the same time he started to change his attitude and show his evil side, he began to smell really bad. And the smell would not wash off of his clothes. I know it wasn’t just me, because the lady at the laudromat noticed that his clothes smelled like they weren’t coming clean. Just a really bizarre bad smell.

I know he’s always been evil, but he hid it very well for many years. But about 10 years ago, I noticed a change in his ability to con everyone, he just wasn’t very good anymore and it wasn’t working on me either. I think that’s when his smell changed too. It’s hard to remember exactly because, obviously I wasn’t aware of exactly what I was witnessing, but I believe it was the beginning of his decline.

Maybe the we are smelling the excessive oxytocin in them and it’s getting us hooked?
Homework for everyone: go find a P and sniff him. Try not to get hooked. LOL.

Yeah, scratch and sniff, just like a cat!

Seriously though I wonder how the phermones come into play.

I read an another article that says we imprint on our first love. So I feel a little more forgiving of myself, because the P was my first love and I was in deep (and he emotionally raped me then too!) . So not too hard to understand that once I let him get a foot in my life forty years later, I was a goner. Had I known all this stuff about chemicals, etc. I could have fought it better.

Kim,
How is Pinky Doodle btw? One of my kitties, Violet, got an eye infection and I’m really worried. She scratched her cornea somehow.

From what I’m reading, oxytocin isn’t a pheromone it is strictly a hormone, so that is why it’s applied up the nose rather than sniffed. That’s not to say that it doesn’t somehow affect the release of pheromones…

The way it works is that when you produce more oxytocin, you feel happier. It could be that Ps have less receptors in the amygdala or maybe another hormone (cortisole or adrenalin) may be binding to the same receptor therefore not leaving any space open for the oxytocin. Its possible that they secrete more oxytocin when that hormone is not binding to the receptors for whatever reason.

Remember, oxytocin makes you “trust” not “mate”, it’s just that the con man needs you to trust him before you will mate w/him or give him your money. They will usually use the “pity ploy” which can be an appeal to the mothering instinct – which does have a oxytocin connection. I know mine also uses the “ego ploy”. He will ask you, “You have money right? What good is money if it doesn’t make you happy? Use the money to make yourself happy…” something along those lines but it usually involves buying something that he wants, and then he will take it.

What really struck me is that in addition to being a perfect N-supply, I also find it hard to feel envy or gloat over other’s misfortunes. Now it appears to be connected to having low oxytocin. Need to find someone to have sex with.! But not a P.

As for smelling good, I have no clue how that works, thats why we need to do an informal survey here at LF. Does everyone here remember that their PoiSoN smelled really good when you first met?

Skylar, pinky doodle is good, but now has something called a hematoma on the fur covered part of his ear. It’s like a blood blister, I guess, and his ear is puffed up like a puff pastry! I don’t think he got any antibodies or immunities as a baby, since he almost starved to death. I went on line and researched it though, and apparently it’s not serious, he doesn’t seem to be in pain, just looks pathetic, ( maybe that’s why I love him so much). His eye infection is incurable in so far as he will continue to have outbreaks, it is viral in nature, and is called feline herpes virus of the eye. Poor baby. I give him half a Lysene capsule daily to defend against outbreaks. Are you sure your kitty doesn’t have this? It is not contagious to humans, by the way.

I wanted to comment though that the oxytocin hormone is released by way of physical touch, so that a viscious cycle is established, We trust, we mate, we bond, Etc, etc etc. That’s part of the reason it’s sooo hard to end the relationship, even if it s–ks! Know what I mean? There’s a great article about this, but I’ll have to try to locate it. I’ll let you know how to access it. Love to your Kittys.

Skylar, I’m still preatty computer illiterate and there are a lot of things I don’t know how to do, like post a link. That artical is by Sandra Brown at http://www.saferelationshipsmagazine.com...
It is titled: Living the Gentle life part7: Healing Sexually. I could only find part 6, online. I subscribed to the magazine and they sent me part 7 to E-mail. Not sure when it will become available, or how to send it on to you. You can always subscribe though. Very good article!

Hey, look at that. All I had to do was write the address and it came out in red! Yay me. I’m learning.

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