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By | February 4, 2010 214 Comments

The sociopath’s imperturbability

The sociopath’s imperturbability has been widely noted. However, this is a generalization, not true of all sociopaths in all situations.

A sociopath around whom the net is closing, who recognizes that he’s played his last card and finds, alas, that the game is ending and that he faces inescapable consequences—sociopaths in this circumstance may feel forms of perturbability, like anxiety and worry.

But in situations where he perceives his security (however unrealistically) to be relatively unthreatened—especially where his grandiosity and sense of omnipotence remain relatively intact—the sociopath can be curiously imperturbable.

Imperturbable, that is, in the commission of his violating acts, as well as in the subsequent striking sangfroid with which he’ll brazenly perpetuate his deceit even when confronted with his flat guilt.

How do we explain this?

First, I pose a question: Have you ever played a really cruel practical joke or, if not, witnessed one (with enjoyment), that left its victim torturously duped, perhaps even mildly traumatized?

I’d suggest that the mindset involved in conceiving and executing such a prank, even the mindset (as a witness) involved in merely enjoying it, is temporarily rather sociopathic in several ways.

I stress temporarily because nonsociopaths will inhabit this state of mind only briefly and experimentally, and then, on the assumption that any suffering the prank causes its victim will be experienced as relatively fleeting and superficial.

But I use a “practical joke” analogy because I think it describes somewhat accurately the sociopath’s basic perspective in the world. Life, for the sociopath, is something like a big stage on which to perpetrate forms of ongoing deceit to suit his shifting agenda for comfort, convenience, tension discharge, and other gratifications.

After all, at the motivational heart of the “practical joker” is the driving question, Can I pull this off? This is a question, among others—a  kind of perpetual carrot, if you will—that compels sociopathically-oriented personalities.

And the socopath’s response to this implicitly posed question is felt, if not implicitly answered, as, “Of course I can pull this off! I can pretty much pull anything off! Watch me do it! Watch me get away with this!”

In other words, the sociopath’s cocky faith in his powers of chicanery nicely captures his inflated grandiosity and sense of omnipotence. To put it even more basically, the sociopath thinks he is good, really good. And in inverse proportion to how smart he thinks he is, he thinks that you are just as stupid.

This is the sociopath’s signature contempt, and let us not underestimate it: You are as stupid as he is smart.

In the end, the sociopath ultimately takes neither you, nor anyone, seriously. And it’s not that he chooses not to respect people. It’s not that he’s unwilling to take others seriously. It’s that he can’t.  And make no mistake: his inability to take people seriously, in an  authentic way, is a core aspect of his disorder.

Does the nonpsychotic sociopath, intellectually, know right from wrong? This is a frequently posed question, to which the answer is yes. Intellectually, the nonpsychotic sociopath is usually well aware that his behaviors are exploitive and violate legal and interpersonal laws and boundaries.

But the point is, he just doesn’t care. The sociopath just doesn’t take these laws and interpersonal boundaries seriously, because he doesn’t take you, or others, seriously.

And so this is where his imperturbability enters. When you don’t take others seriously; when, on some level, others are a joke to you; when a malignant contempt pervades your view of others, then you can have your way with them, you can use them for whatever purposes suit your immediate agenda. Moreover, you can cause them pain and outrage as you seek your own ends unburdened by normal feelings of responsibility, accountability and guilt, because you don’t just don’t take them seriously.

So you’re caught in a lie? So you’ve been busted? Big deal. So your denials are preposterous? Big deal. Let’s remember, you are slick and smart enough to convince any stupid person to disbelieve the indisputable evidence of your guilt!

And even if you can’t persuade them to give you a pass this time; even if they’ve busted you cold this time, and your normally reliable glibness doesn’t spring you from the present trap, so what? After all, there’s no shame or embarrassment to be busted by someone you don’t take seriously.

And so the sociopath’s imperturbability, in this light, can be seen as a natural byproduct of his malignant disrespect of, and contempt towards, others. It is a pathological imperturbability, not an admirable, enviable one. His is not the imperturbability of a “cool cat,” or an enviably placid temperament, or the imperturbability that can derive from a certain hard-earned wisdom, confidence and perspective.

No, the sociopath’s imperturbability is that of an emotionally, interpersonally sick individual who, at bottom, has no true emotional stake in others.

And so finally, in his relationships with others, what he stands to lose, through his exploitation, is felt to be as superficial, and dismissable, as anything he stands to gain.

(My use of male gender pronouns in this article is for convenience’s sake and not to suggest females aren’t capable of the behaviors discussed. This article is copyrighted © 2010 by Steve Becker, LCSW.)


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pollyannanomore

Thankyou Steve – this is horrible to realise that we are not taken seriously at all – our pain, anguish, despair and torture are a passing amusement to them – you are right that they are sick – the sickest individuals possible and the most evil. Does this not taking others seriously stem from the arrogance and grandiose self perception they hold?

Quantum Solace

“In other words, the sociopath’s cocky faith in his powers of chicanery nicely captures his inflated grandiosity and sense of omnipotence. To put it even more basically, the sociopath thinks he is good, really good. And in inverse proportion to how smart he thinks he is, he thinks that you are just as stupid.”

Oh, man! This is one for the books. If those few lines don’t describe the monster in my life, nothing does!

Elizabeth Conley

Thanx Steve,

I never really thought this phenomenon through. I used to think it weird that both the N & S reacted with impersonal irritation when I didn’t buy into their nonsense.

It was an odd reaction, because it was the sort of emotion normals reserve for products purchased that aren’t quite as advertised and hangnails. Recognition of our mutual humanity wasn’t factored in.

Your insights are helpful.

Cat

Thanks Steve, for the excellent description of my ex.S. This was one of those things I couldn’t quite put my finger on.
His reaction to the emotional and financial upheaval he caused others was short, if any at all. He “expected” the world to get over it in record time. Of course, that was because he has never had, nor will he, a normal response.
Yes, they think we are as stupid as they are smart. Each day, I take this a little less personally. I used to get so upset over his lack of reaction and I know today that just fed his grandiosity, his “I am above it all.” attitude.
He is what he is, evil is evil, and thank God I’m not living with that in my life every day. I no longer dance with the Devil himself.

newlife08

BRAVO, Steve – as always……………

When confronted , he has always has an alibi . And when contradicted because I know the truth, his stock answer has become ” Well, it doesn’t matter anyway because we’re over .”

With a few words, he is able to dismiss me, my pain , anguish and need for enough respect to tell me the truth. He walks away shaking his head as if I am the one who doesn’t get it.

Me, of course, being “THE STUPID ONE . ”

Ultimately, I have given up my need to get the truth from him – it will never happen – nor will I ever get any respect – only an ingenuous glimmer of it when he needs something .

Steve, you never fail me in continuing to IDENTIFY AND NAME those behaviors and experiences – the feelings they created – that do continue to puzzle and confound me – the ones I can’t even put into words.

You are my voice of reason – my sanity !!!!!!!!!

changedforever

I am really very thankful for this website it just explains so clearly things that we’re wonder for years. We learn a lot here.
This article is so true. When my ex sociopath was facing the debts that took him to bankruptcy I was more worried than him. While collection agencies were calling every single day to my place, (he gave my address to them) he kept himself so “imperturbable”. Sleeping like an angel while I was stressed out about the all situation. Always showing an incredible “poise” and calling me “stressed chicken”. He even went his way out and bought more staff for him with the credit cards and told me in a very calm and quiet manner “If I am going to be bankruptcy I might as well spent and enjoy all the available credit” I was “SPEETCHLESS”. He went ahead and bought lots of perfumes a small (bedroom) TV and a cell phone, always with that “imperturbability”. Sometimes I used to find myself jealous of that “poise” and wanted to be just like him”NO WORRIES. Now I got it! Oh God after so many years I found the explanation for such weird behavior.

LouiseGolem

Wow. You nailed it. And actually gave me some comfort, this fine morning.

What you describe here: “After all, at the motivational heart of the “practical joker” is the driving question, Can I pull this off? This is a question, among others—a kind of perpetual carrot, if you will—that compels sociopathically-oriented personalities,” and in the following paragraphs explains EXACTLY what happened over the summer with me and my S/P, at what turned out to be the end of our relationship. He tried to take both me and his other lover on the same vacation! His other lover was his daughter’s girlfriend, and she went under cover of being his daughter’s girlfriend.

I figured it out within a day, and asked him what the heck was going on! And boy did he go into denial/compensation overdrive, and it got very uncomfortable and ugly. And then the abuse started, that lasted until I wiggled out of his grasp in early Fall.

What’s sad is that I do think he’s not psychotic, as you say, and understands the essential “wrongness” of what he did. And in losing me, he lost the person who (I’ve been told) his ex-wife, best friend, and kids told him was the most honorable and intelligent person he knew. (I’m not patting my own back, just reporting what I was told.)

So his imperterbability had no grounding in reality (whatever that is), and I’m really afraid that he cracked over the summer. Seriously cracked up, because the curtain was called. And I called it.

Which is why I”m scared of him

Sorry for my analysing my situation through the lens of this article here. But your article is very, very inciteful, and truly helps me put together the pieces of what happened to me over the summer.

Ox Drover

Great Article, as always, Steve!

My sperm donor described himself in a newspaper interview as his relationship to everyone else in the world as a “human living on an island with nothing but maliginant chimpanzees” (the rest of the human race being of course as much below him as a chimp would be “below” us.) He also described himself as the “world’s smartest man” etc. By the time all these articles were coming out because he had become quite famous (and RICH) he went on and on and ON tellingn in print just how smart and accomplished he was and how stupid the rest of the world is. The funny thing is, he NEVER “got it” how he sounded to others or that other people thought he was a pompous ASS. He loved to brag about things he had never done, even though his REAL life was quite exciting and would have been believed and he would have been admired.

As it was, anyone with any class at all was TOTALLY DISGUSTED BY HIM, and those that did “worship” him were usually the ones that HE DESPISED THE MOST, ignorant and uneducated. So his bragging was a “catch 22” for him, because since he never respected anyone at all, yet, he CRAVED their adoration, but because they were dispicable in his eyes, even if they DID adore him, their adoration was EMPTY.

I have noticed too, that with my P son as well as My P-sperm donor, that they MUST HAVE an AUDIENCE to appreciate their feats. It is almost as if they don’t have someone to ADMIRE what they have done, it didn’t happen. My P son and my P-sperm donor have told just about everyone that will listen about their feats of horror, and my P-sperm donor is great at not only telling the horrible things he has done, but making up more horrible things he has NOT done.

Neither one of them “get it” that no matter how much fame and or money they were to acquire, that “normal” people do NOT “admire” or even envy them. As far as I know the only people who “admire” my P-son are other convicts, and my P-sperm donor’s admirers are losers who think being “rich” makes you great—even the many people that he donated money to their medical research in an effort to “make a name for himself” didn’t attend his memorial service. His only TRUE admirer was his youngest son, who I also think was/is JUST LIKE HIM. Or maybe my half brother is just a dupe and not a P, I haven’t seen him in years, but the things he publishes on the internet are “chapter and verse” things my P-sperm donor would have said. My other two half sibs were also NC with my sperm donor at the time of his death (and also left out of the will) LOL

Rosa

A high school principal in this area was recently arrested for supplying drugs/alchohol and having sexual relations with a 17-year old student at the school.

Details of the case stated that he would call this 17-year old girl into the principals’ office, give her pain killers and alchohol, and then send her back to class.

Reports also state that on one occasion, she came over to his house last summer, and he snuck her in through the basement window.
They proceeded to have sex in the basement while his family slept upstairs.

Apparently, these types of incidents between the principal and the 17-year old girl have been going on for the last 2.5 years.
So, he was able to get away with this for quite a while.

He was arrested in the Miami International Airport a few weeks ago.
He had a one-way ticket to the Bahamas.
He told his wife he needed some “time alone to think”.

He’s now sitting in the county jail on $75,000 bond (at least 2 felonies).

This is how brazen they are, and how they can carry out the most unspeakable crimes right under everyone’s noses.

~Update: I just heard on the news that his family posted bail and got him released from jail.

tami

I have a question that I’m wondering if some of you can answer. The article prompted the question when I read the part about the sociopath lying when they are busted. My ex S always tried to lie at first when he was busted but since he was not physically abusive, I was not afraid to stand up to him and tell him that I KNEW he was lying and demanded an answer for his actions. He’d then tell the truth…even admitting that he’d cheated or acted inappropriately with other women. Of course, he’d always try to blame me and I’d cut him off and remind him that “this” was not about ME but about him. So, he’d tell the truth but give some of the strangest excuses for his actions that I’ve ever heard! “I don’t know why I did what I did” was a classic. I STILL refused to accept that. Once I even got “see, I’m NOT perfect like YOU thought”. LOL! Once again, trying to blame me. Is it normal for some sociopaths to actually take their chances by telling the truth and admitting their wrongdoings? It was weird, he’d actually admit to the worst part of the situation…like that YES he had sex with another woman but then he would try to down play it by saying that it was just for sex or that she was “just a whore” when in reality he was telling some of these women that he loved them. Then, he’d try to lie about that and say that the woman was lying. After a great deal of persistence, he’d finally admit that he did tell them that he loved them but that it was his way of keeping them on the hook for sex. For me, none of his answers were acceptable or really made any sense. Of course, he was always sorry, swore it would never happen again and that I was the only woman he ever loved. Is this typical of a sociopath…to admit the truth in a rather twisted way at times?

one/joy_step_at_a_time

tami: yes, I think it is quite an ordinary MO. The spath that i tangled with, made up new lies, to ‘reveal’ as the truth.

I listened one night as she went through hours of trying to figure out what i would accept as the ‘new truth’. And, I did find out that that everything she said, absolutely fucking EVERYTHING was a lie.

Once I even got “see, I’m NOT perfect like YOU thought”. – I got something VERY similar to this once. i called her out on a lie – and she said, ‘I didn’t say that, you assumed that, cause that’s what you wanted to believe.’ yah, right, uh huh.

they are a bit ‘fun house’ if we can really develop an understanding of all the tricks they pull; like watching a very very bad evil clown. hmm, now i know why all those clown thrillers so effectively scare people.

Aeylah

tami,

They are incredibly arrogant creatures. In a twisted cruel way they will even tell you “the truth” as a way to exonorate themselfves from any wrong doing, knowing that they are hurting you and give themselves the license to keep on doing it.

My ex-NS did this!!!! just recently (before I gave him the boot for the last time)……he told me that his new “healthy approach to our relationship was to be transparent in everything”…..so when he told me the “truth” that yes, he had cheated on me, and yes he had just entertained another woman at his house and finally when he said…”I’m having dinner with an “old friend” this Friday night, so I’m not available for you”, he thought it was perfectly okay to do just that becaue he “told the truth”….regardless of the consequence to me.

Fact is when I blew up at this and let him know how hurt I was that he was with other women….he told me I was “over reacting” and that from “now on I”m not going to be honest with you about who I see because you cant handel the truth”!!!!!!!!!

a complete mind [email protected]%&k!!!!

Spirit40

I am just starting to figure out ..he may have sabotaged a couple of my jobs in the past, and any information they have will be used against us huh ..one I was laid off/fired from the other I transfered on my own after he called to snitch me out to my boss after he devalued and discarded me for OW and I got her # and called from work on my lunch break….found out where they lived, Oh she had a pool…..yeah because he smeared me…what a piece of s—t…..I am analyzing every detail of my on and off time with him and it just gets nastier….why would someone want to totally f—k up someone’s life on purpose? because they have no life of their own?

Aeylah

Excellent article Steve….

Imperturbability…as it was in my case, REVOLVED ON HOW MUCH HE COULD HE GET AWAY WITH ….WHILE TELLING ME THE “TRUTH” ….and then watching me squirm with horror and pain…..Twisting it all around that the I couldn’t handle the “truth” ….THEY SIMPLY DONT CARE!

Ox Drover

Sometimes, it has been my experience that they will tell the “truth” IF they think it will “benefit” them, because then they can go into a PITY PLAY which sometimes works to get the victim to “forgive” them and put it into the “past” and never bring it up again, EVEN WHEN THEY CONTINUE that same kind of behavior.

There is some “unwritten” rule that we can’t “fight about the past” even when there is an OBVIOUS PATTERN FROM PAST BEHAVIOR TO CURRENT BEHAVIOR. It is like we are supposed to have AMNESIA for whatever they did in the past, and they get a CLEAN SLATE to start over with New abusive behavior.

Well, it shoulldn’t work that way I think. The BEST indicator of future behavior is past behavior. A few people change, but if you see a PATTERN, that is what is going to go on in the future.

If a person is a habitual lliar, or lies when they get caught to try to “cover up,” you can expect lies in the FUTURE even if you “forgive and forget” this one and give them back your trust. People who “man up” to what they have done and actively show REGRET and shame, they might have a chance, but the psychopath fakes shame and wants PITY….for their bad acts. NOPE–I have NO MORE PITY FOR ANYONE. I have compassion for those who deserve it, but no pity and no compassion for those who don’t deserve it. It has taken me a long time to get here, but when I see the PATTERNS, and look at the big picture—I’lll save my compassion and my pity for the people in Hati and other places who deserve it, but not for those who use and abuse.

one/joy_step_at_a_time

…..and this behavior is what passes as love.

Aeylah

Right on Oxy,

and I unfortunatly played into the PITY PLAY again! I forgave when he underwent prostate surgery and said he had the epiphany realizing he had to change his bad behaviour because life was too precous to keep doing things the way he was.

He was being HONEST at that point. Ironic……because his new realized self lasted only 3 months, and then he used the HONESTY of his medical circumstance to exploit me and betray all over again.

I deserve the proverbial iron skillet on my head for going back….again…..but now I’m NS free with NC for the past 2 weeks, and intend to make this the last time.

Quantum Solace

“The truth” for the monster in my life simply meant saying the nastiest and most hurtful things to one’s face. For example, a good friend of ours was overweight. The monster would carry on and on and on about “fat people,” “fat slobs” “fat pigs” and the like in the guy’s presence. When I would call him on it, he would say “well, I’m being honest and he shouldn’t be offended because he’s fat.” He would do the same thing to me and tell me that I “looked like shit” and then laugh and say, “well, you do. That [dress/shirt/skirt/pants] don’t look good on you and you look like shit, I’m just being honest.” For everything else, however, he couldn’t tell the truth if it killed him. When I faced him with facts, he had one of two reactions: (1) he would look me straight in the eye, deny it and call me crazy or (2) tell me that it was my fault and I made him do it (i.e. pornography). That man is such a liar that he can pass a lie detector test with flying colors.

one/joy_step_at_a_time

Spirit: this article by Steve really explains it to me. This part of my response to being spathed is probably one of the most difficult for me: humiliation. I feel humiliated because I now know that all that laughter was AT me. I am holding the feeling of humiliation at bay, until I can safely feel it deeply, and release it.

I once hit somehow for pushing a humiliation button in me. I have hit three people in my life (although i am sure there were some sandbox tussles):
– the bully in grade 5, who had bullied me for a year st8t, I smacked her twice and ran;
– my mom, i hit her back once when I was a teenager, and it stopped her escalating controlling behavior that was becoming physically abusive;
– and this x who was incredibly dysfunctional.

She had laughed in my face about something from our relationship. I didn’t even think, I just punched her. That was 20 years ago. Point is, even having my N x’s fist in front of my face this time last year, didn’t cause me to get physical (i just promised to lay charges. if she would have touched me i would have defended myself – i was about 1 foot away from my favorite cast iron pot and i suspect I would have beaned her with it. she was extremely strong and should might have hurt me badly if she had let that first punch fly). but i digress.

humiliation – is the one thing I realized could trigger me instantaneously. and here it is – spathed. lied to. deceived. laughed at. humiliated. I actually FELT BETTER when i figured out that she was a spath, had conned me completely and intentionally AND is a PRO with 30 some years of this exact sort of con behind her. Guess she’s not quite as smart as SHE would like to believe – she keeps rehashing the same story with variations.

And there is ALWAYS a consensus amongst the sock puppets (there are always many) that her main character IS THE SMARTEST. Yup, she’s smarter than her own sock puppets! Stupid, stupid woman.

humiliated. and IT DIDN’T KILL ME. HAH!!!
Worst fear experienced. Didn’t kill me. Another one of those ‘presents’ from he spath. (presents like, cat ‘hairball’ kinda presents).

I love this article. I really love this article!!

libelle

Dear Steve, I can so relate! My father was always “the rock in the perturbation” but in the same time the cause of the whole turmoil! He was commiting crimes, putting us in very dire situations, and he was expecting from us to help him,. bail him out and rescue him without him being any help with it.

First I thought he was a really RELIABLE rock, and protecting and helping to get over the worst as he always was standing quietly in the middle of the room, arms crossed, while we were seeking passports, his army documents, the purse, keys etc, and he constantly said “All will pass/ come forward/ get o. K.”; but he was the cause of it all!!! (he was so unorderly!)

It was him sitting patiently, quietly in the eye of the hurricane, and we as a family swirling around him trying to placate the winds he created with his remarks, acts, deeds. Of course we succeeded almost always and his words were the bare truth, TRUST ME!!! ALL WILL BE O.K. We became really good as his rescue squad! (I was the designated finder of the keys, passports, documents, food, cigarettes, clothes, shoes, you name it. I was always on hyperalert mode.) Now I feel ridiculed for having been his most obedient servant and him being the king getting what he was entiteld anyway!

My mom and my sister had to bail him out with hefty sums of money several times, and he still continues his dangerous play! But they play no more, or try to. He is still doing dangerous things I do not want to know about!

He got rid of most of our money by now.

He is so clever and above all us basic human lives! We are so boring! (oh yea, and he kept telling us that “He was not as perfect as we thought he was!” That meant we had to help him getting out of some difficult situation- but he is still WAY more perfect than we ever may try to acchieve!!)

I was always like a hornet, very nervous. I wanted to learn to be “cold blooded” as I think it is a great thing to be “above the things”, and to be kind of like him (a mere faded copy!) took me almost thirty months of hard anesthesia internship including many many successful reanimation situations to get a kind of near to the cold blooded state my father had as an inborn quality!

Therefore I also can relate to this article, as I feel validated for my efforts to get to this state of “being a rock” myself. I just have to find the button to make this quality available for myself!

Thanks Steve for yet another great article!

PS I decided to go for partnership without my mother’s money. Be rock enough for myself!

onelukygurl

I can relate to this post with SUCH depth as my ex asshole showed his colors in this arena when he asked me to cosign a motorcycle for him. Yup…and I told him no. This wasnt such a problem for him though cause, well, he thought if I didnt want to then maybe I would be willing to BUY him a slightly cheaper one, have him make payments to me over a 6 month period, and hey! ‘if we broke up you (me) would make out on the deal cause you (I) could sell it for MUCH more than Id have bought it for.”

You see, I can relate to how insulting these disgusting people are, as clearly in the example, he BELIEVED I was really dumb! He thought he was so slick to try and convince me that it would be an INVESTMENT for me to have him make payments to me…and if we broke up in the meantime, well, I would be making out on the deal!

The rational sounds very clever…if he were trying to convince someone without a Masters Degree plus 26 hours…but he didnt see that. He saw me as a means to an end…I have the money and he has none-I loved him dearly and he liked what I had to offer-I was generous and he was a taker. This scenario played out very systematically in HIS own distorted mind, however, when I said NO I threw him for a loop.

Looking back on things, I will remember that day as being pivotal in my understanding just how dumb he really thought I was…and just how smooth he BELIEVES he is! He prided himself on being a ‘good used car salesman’…which is not his occupation, but in comparing himself to someone sneaky and known to stretch the truth this is who he compared himself to.

I on the other hand looked at him like a juvenile or a child most of the time, particularly when he tried pulling his shit on me. It would piss me off so bad and I never quite understood WHY I would be so mad at his ignorance. Well, that’s just it–he THOUGHT he was smooth as silk in ALL areas of life…and I literally mean ALL areas.

I am, at time, just plain ol disgusted by him. Other times I feel sorry for him because he doenst get how the world sees him. He really believes the world views him as a stellar guy…until you sit with him for any amount of time.

He’s pathetic.

nightmare

GREAT ARTICLE STEVE.
I HAD TO LOOK UP THE WORD

Noun 1. imperturbability – calm and unruffled self-assurance; “he performed with all the coolness of a veteran”
AND THE ARTICLE MADE SENSE.
ITS SO TRUE… WHEN CONFRONTED WITH THE TRUTH IN HAND . HE WAS CALM AND LOOKED AT ME LIKE I WAS THE CRAZY ONE.

THANK YOU

witsend

Tami,
In a way you answered your own question. You said that after you confronted and really pushed him for the truth, none of his answers made any sense to you. In other words even after he had supposidly”come clean” and told the truth (he really didn’t) you still walked away without any clarification.

Like everything else that an s/p/n does even when they are backed into a corner and tell the “truth” they put a “spin” on it.

If someone really COMES clean with you and tells you the truth after a lie they accept full responsibility for that lie. And you “feel” that somehow the wrong (the lie) was made right by both the addmission of the lie and the fact that the person who told you the lie has accepted the responsibility of it. And is sorry.
You never get that from a pathalogical lier. They put more effort into the “spin” of their story. The passing of the blame, or “if that person didn’t do this, I wouldn’t have had to do what I did”…ect. Even if you keep pressuring them for the truth, and FINALLY get it…Your head is spinning.
And you walk away still feeling like they NEVER DID really tell you the truth.

onelukygurl

Oh, and by the way…

Yesterday was 12 weeks NC with the ass. Im not gonna say it has been easy…well, its been easy to NOT call, but it hasnt been easy uncovering all the shit…

Im taking it one day at at time and trying my hardest to remember all the crap that I went through…keeping out all the ‘good’-as that was just the rope that was pulling me back

sistersister

Through this article I also see that a lot of lesser, not-quite-sociopath behaviors are habitual among some of my friends and ex-boyfriends. I wish we could choose to make everyone different and healthy, and never have to work among them, or love them, but unfortunately, we often do. I’m talking not about criminals just slightly broken humans.

The behavior described here is the victimhood script: “I don’t really care what you think of my behavior because I don’t really think much of you. In other words, YOUR opinion doesn’t really matter to me because I am the victim here, and YOU are the perpetrator — because I said so.”

I usually laugh off that routine, don’t apologize at all to this diva, because I see through it as the little manipulative game it is. (Unless, LOL, I am actually the sociopath and don’t think very much of this person. Which I don’t.)

The question for me is: If I’m so smart, why do I keep attracting such “victims” into my life? Why should I be congratulating myself on how little disruption I let them cause — I’m not calling from a motel where I’m hiding out from an ex — when the real question is, Why do I know them in the first place?

It’s really hard to discern our own unconscious patterns, but I’d say this is a pretty strong one for me. Instead of being that sweet, strong, sociopath-bait woman, I’m the hard, strong, opinionated, “thanks-for-sharing” type. (Notice that both are “strong”! Notice how my strength and superior intelligence didn’t help me leave my abusive sister behind years before I did.)

Like one_step-at_a_time, “It didn’t kill me” is kind of my motto. Along with, “I kicked his ass right back.” Perhaps healthy responses — certainly admired around here — but I want to know how to just STOP THE CYCLE before it starts. Or do I have to keep watching the sequels to this movie? Can I just develop a smell-test? Or maybe get over the fantasy that I’m so strong and smart and able to walk away from these idiots — so I don’t have to keep acting it out, proving it.

It may come down to just an “energy” thing. What kind of energy do we attract with our energy?

Victimhood energy attracts victims who are really just perpetrators. Sociopaths.

Basically, what would a preemptive attitude look like? What kinds of amazing people never fall for this crap, even a little, even to win against it or brag about how great they were at “handling” these jerks?

Not an accident that my favorite past career was as legal secretary to some really abusive lawyers. I was proud of my ability to fight them off and make them behave and actually like it. Finally, in looking for my next job, the interviewers kept asking me how much abuse I could take because this guy was a “screamer.” I said, screamers are a specialty! I just fix it. I make it better, make it work, inside of a week. That wasn’t the right answer. They wanted an “enabler” — I was so proud I wasn’t that! — but maybe I’m an enabler of a different kind. The kind who gets off on the fight, the drama. Talking tigers down from trees.

I’m also really proud of an incident where one guy thought that, because he got me drunk, I had no more brain cells left and he could take me to a hotel. I told him no, meant it, and was very emphatic about it (and, duh, remember it all very clearly). And he still paid for a cab to “another bar across town,” ushered me into a hotel lobby, and actually thought I would keep going right into the elevator. I kept going all right . . . right through to the other street entrance and all the way to the train home. It speaks to just how stupid a sociopath thinks everyone else is.

It’s been fun playing these little head-games, but . . . I’d like to stop being so proud of them and learn how to avoid going there in the first place.

Rosa

Mine became increasingly controlling and aggressive towards me as the relationship progressed, especially when I would try to leave.
I became afraid of him.
He was NOTHING like the person I met in the beginning.
During the course of my ordeal, I realized that I was involved with a man who hated women.
By the end, I finally understood that it was ME that he hated.

Some of these disordered personalities can be very IMPULSIVE, and that really scares me.

I think we should always be careful when confronting these individuals. You just never know if they are going to give you a line of crap, or try to kill you. I’m not even kidding right now.

I’ll never forget back in 1997, when Andrew Cunanan went on a nation-wide killing spree. He’s the one who killed Gianni Versace in Miami, before killing himself.

I think it’s important to remember that Cunanan’s first murder victim in that killing spree was his FRIEND, Jeffrey Trail, in Minneapolis, MN on April 25, 1997.

Ox Drover

Dear Aeylah, NOPE, you do NOT deserve the skillet, you deserve a pat on the back for l2 weeks of NC, that’s the hardest part…but now you are over it, that first two weeks, and each day you are STRONGER and molre POWERFUL, yah! you are getting there!!!!!! TOWANDA!!!

Roby, you deserve a TOWANDA too for 12 weeks of NC!!! Way to go girlfriend!!!! That’s the spirit, it actually kills them inside when they can no longer control us and NC is the ULTIMATE CONTROL FOR US!!!!

Sometimes they discard us and go NC with us to make us suffer, my egg donor did that before she decided since her P-buddies duped and robbed her that she wanted me back….NOPE! TOOOOOO late! I am in control NOW! I am the one doing NC. I won’t let her get to me any more. I’m sure she thinks that I will “come round” if she waits long enough, because that is what always happened in the past, but you know, she will be 81 in April, I wonder how LONG SHE CAN WAIT! I have no intention of even attending her memorial service which will be pretty sketchy I imagine, only distant cousins if any are still alive and a neighbor or two.

pollyannanomore

Yes that calm rational logical attitude in the midst of a self created crisis – I can so relate to that. He shrugged everything off – the electricity is about to be cut off for non payment? “Relax – I’ll call them.” Of course he never would. Same with the bank if the mortgage wasn’t paid due to his spending … “I’ll pay them next week” – NO you don’t negotiate with banks about when you feel like paying them – they TELL YOU when to pay them. He never took the consequences of his actions seriously – not once.

And there he would be accusing me of being dramatic or a worrier or neurotic while he cruised by in oblivion about the chaos he was causing. What utter arrogance. I actually tried repeatedly to explain the gravity and serious repercussions of what he was doing, but he wouldn’t listen. He would roll his eyes and walk off as though I was making things worse than they actually were. I was the only one with a handle on reality and he discredited that making out I was crazy for imagining there would be consequences and serious ones for unpaid debts.

As I look back now I see why it was so hard to get out. It was one financial crisis after another and all created by him and his selfish spending. There was never any money and I think that is part of their modus operandi – keep us poor so there is never any possibility of leaving. What bastards.

onelukygurl

Oxy:
I have begun to feel the ‘discarding’, I think. It didnt dawn on me that that was being done until today. I have asked a few times what people ‘thought’ about him not trying to contact me AT ALL these past twelve weeks. The reason I ask is this…I have a bag of his belongings, which may not sound like much. There is a pair of shoes in there that he paid alot of money for…it surprises me that he wouldnt want these belongings back, particularly the shoes.

After some thought and help from ErinBrock it is clear to me that he IS leaving his belongings here so he has a REASON to contact me…in the future. Its one foot in still.

On the other hand, as you wrote, he could be ‘disciplining’ me by discarding me as punishment…not realizing I ALREADY STOPPED TALKING TO HIM FOR GOOD! (that’s my power and control I have). What you said makes sense though…it very easily could be a punishment for not ‘apologizing’ and at the same time an ‘in’ to my life when he’s done doing whatever he’s doing.

one/joy_step_at_a_time

wow, this thread really touched a nerve; 30 posts in one day!

steve has a very good article on ‘stonewalling’ on his site.

ErinBrock

Areobicsgirl….I think your on to ROBS game!!
BINGO!!!

🙂

Couldn’t resist btw….. 🙂

Quantum Solace

midlifecrisis:

You sound just like me. I went thru exactly the same thing as you describe. Back in the 80s and 90s, the man made $100,000 a year and still, I had to take up sewing jobs and babysitting at home to pay the bills. To this day, I don’t know where all the money he made went (computer pornography is one theory). Of course, while I was the one caring full time for two young children, paying the bills, putting food on the table and keeping the water and electric on, he laughed at me with all his heart for being a sucker and working until 2 and 3 in the morning to make $75/week from piece work.

I think back and so many bad memories come to mind such as the time I walked into the post office and was detained at the manager’s office because I had given them a check which bounced. Not only did they interrogate and humiliate me but they also threatened to press criminal charges against me. When I told him about it, he couldn’t stop laughing for a good half an hour.

There’s also the one time when he went to the ATM machine before a day trip, got back in the car cursing, kicking and screaming because “the machine wouldn’t give him any money.” I asked him why and he replied “the machine says I have no money.” To which I said, “well, do you?” And with the most self-righteous, aggrieved and angered of attitudes, he replied ‘Well, no!”

You just can’t make this stuff up!

learnthelesson

I remember the moment.

Early on in our “courtship” we were walking in the park. Conversing about everything from A to Z. Back then we would walk and talk for hours. As we were rounding the bend discussing HIS past relationships- I said wouldnt it be just amazing and wonderful to have 100% honesty with someone – just never ever doubting or having to wonder about dishonesty.

His response was ” thats just unrealistic. And plus that would probably be so boring” – I remember IN THAT MOMENT feeling an uneasiness about his response (if only I was paying attention and noting every quirky feeling I had and made the choice to not pursue with him). Instead I just said my point of view – how I aspire to have that kind of relationship in my life – and ever so slightly uncomfortably laughed with him about his response. I did that alot 🙁 Oh and his phone rang on that walk – his response was “damn I thought I turned this thing off” – another red flag – HUGE RED FLAG…

Lastly, he was notorious for saying “I was teasing” or “I made that up” or “OMG you believed that” — MONTHS AFTER THE FACT. You know how sometimes we do tease and joke with others and we say Im teasing RIGHT AWAY. Well he felt he could lie about something and then when it came to the surface he would just say “I was teasing” or “you believe anything and everything”

And many times we would have these (what I perceived as) intense talks (because of the energy and listening I put into it) about different things ex. a dream he had…. and several months later somehow the subject came up and he would say – OMG I totally made that dream up – I never had it. You believed me??? I would say are you freaken for real? Who does that???? Who puts time and energy in making up things just to make them up??? His response was huge amounts of laughter. I would be stunned – so shocked that I couldnt even deal with the reality of ALL OF IT – ALL OF HIM – ALL OF HIS WAYS. I chose not to deal with it/face it and I stayed way toooooo long.

I remember saying because I want to believe you and be able to believe you 100% of the time. I want to trust you. So I did. Each and every time without fail. And each and every time I got burned. From the beginning I NEVER set out to have him earn my trust. I just gave it to him. MY BAD. If I had firm boundaries and beliefs in place about earning my trust – he would have failed in the first 4 months and I would have moved on without guilt or fear because I would have rationalized that he was not a good decent soul – took me 4 PLUS years. Until i realized what was unhealthy about me was not having a good sense of what a healthy relationship entails. A willingness to grow and learn together – honestly respectfully openly with the right amount of selfishness and selflessness as well as give and take…

“the sociopath’s imperturbability is that of an emotionally, interpersonally sick individual who, at bottom, has no true emotional stake in others.”

No truer words have been spoken about the ways of a S.

Quantum Solace

learnthelesson:

The monster in my life used to do something similar, however, his gig was whenever he said very cruel, mean things and I called him on it, he would say “oh, I was just kidding” but if I didn’t call him on it, it would remain said and, with time, I found out, would become his “truth”

Funny, how they’re all the same, huh?

blueskies

…. and the question is WHY would anyone want to wrong foot another… in the way LTL describes? Who on earth would want to do that…and for what gain?? What kind of person would even be coming from this angle…oh…:(

I need to see this kind of behaviour for what it really is in it’s ‘infancy’, nip it in the bud before it hurts me.x

myboysmattermost

When caught in a lie, my N/S would always say, “well you know I lie, so why did you believe me when I said/promised I would/wouldn’t”, ect. it would make me so crazy…

He is calling and emailing again today, now it is “please”…I am waiting on word from my attorney that the TRO, TPO and divorce has been filed. I have been waiting for this day for 2 months now, since they took him away and then he fled.

I have been rather depressed the past couple of days, lots of tears, why me’s and poor me’s…seems like everything is going wrong and I have to handle it all myself…but then again, as I recall, I always had to, he was never really any help.

He would take a week off for the birth of our son, or when I had surgery and tell everyone he was helping me out but at home, he would sleep all day or do his own thing telling me, “it’s my vacation”…

And when he got perturbed or if I was asking to much, I would get the “now you get nothing from me for the rest of the day” and put that stupid pillow over his eyes and just sleep and sleep.

I know depression is part of the grieving process so I hope that is all it is…

Do you recommend the divorce support groups? There is one at the local church and it is free, what I can afford:) Any thoughts?

Thanks!!

one/joy_step_at_a_time

myboysmattermost – hang in there girl!

You are dealing with a tough set of circumstances right now, but are doing the necessary things, and standing up for yourself. and this is golden!

best,
one step

Excellent article, insights and posts. Thanks once again Dr. Steve.

Glad I still read here because I always learn. Reading others posts and expereinces is still amazing. Expecially how fundamentally the same they (P’s) are. That still is shocking somehow to me. That there are people who are just like THAT, period.

The imperturbable aspect of the P/S/N/’s can, when done well, really resemble stoicism, strength, cool, unflappable…and I think that they get a huge amount of mileage from that, especially if they are in a business setting where these qualities are valued.

Flavor that with a wiff of , I’m just a tad “more” than any body else, and I deserve to be treated with adoration, but done in the subtlest of ways, with lots of shy boy interludes and “I don’t like to brag..”

I can so relate to Oxy’s post about the he that made the mess being all calm about it, and another poster I belive as well.

Ditto for mine. Sooooo Cool. And for the longest time I respected that, and when bad shite kept happening, I would try to match his stoicism. He expected that too…and had not much use for any handwringing on my part. But all that turned me into more and more of a mess.

I saw the pattern and talked about the pattern, and here too it was, “that’s over” “don’t talk about the past” etc.. bang on.

Presently I am dealing with his imperturbability in court. And he is classic. Deny, bully,deny. Stall,push, threaten. Refuse, deny, bully some more, and so on. But I have seen his hands shake.

Lately I have been deeply questioning if I should go on. And his classic “best defense is an offense” tactics really do have an impact.

Reading this article re-inforces why I need to carry on. Because I have the truth on my side. And he has humiliated me far more than enough.

It is all an act in any event. The I am strong and if you worry about my actions you are weak.

The stuff I couldn’t fathom he was being so calm about? It was all manufactured as a fear base for my benefit. And he was calmly knowingly torturing me mentally with these things. Now that I have unravelled the last 6 years of books, I KNOW that all of it was fabricated. How sick is that?

Thanks all for your posts and stay strong! Life is infinitely better without them. N’est pas?

one/joy_step_at_a_time

anitasee: i have read many comments and articles here, and i see my spath in so much of it. But your post is the first time i have actually ‘FELT’ her.

“The imperturbable aspect of the P/S/N/’s can, when done well, really resemble stoicism, strength, cool, unflappable”and I think that they get a huge amount of mileage from that…”

and she did, with me and others, a HUGE amount of mileage. stoic, honorable, suffering, but laughing. i just didn’t realize that it wasn’t with me, it was AT me.

“Flavor that with a wiff of , I’m just a tad “more” than any body else, and I deserve to be treated with adoration, but done in the subtlest of ways, with lots of shy boy interludes and “I don’t like to brag..”

shy interludes, a tad more – intelligent, special, sweet, knowing, self deprecating 😉 all of it…

“…And for the longest time I respected that, and when bad shite kept happening, I would try to match his stoicism. He expected that too”and had not much use for any handwringing on my part. But all that turned me into more and more of a mess. ”

I was started to get that. That sense of being devalued if i had any needs or feelings that didn’t match hers. it had just started – ’cause i tried SO HARD to match her, but i started to need to have more needs met – and then the cracks started to show.

This is truly, the first post i have read where i can feel her, and the truth of how she was, ans what satrted to happen to me.

“It was all manufactured as a fear base for my benefit. And he was calmly knowingly torturing me mentally with these things.”
yup. every word was manufactured – all the ‘characters’ – the family and friends, the illnesses, the surgeries, the mental breakdowns, the suicide attempts, the incest with the father, the sister, the old girlfriend, finding out about having a son on the eve of life threatening surgery, the going blind. the dying. everything that keep me on 24/7 alert and constantly hyper vigilant………done to create bonds and fear, to torture me and others, mentally and emotionally.

on purpose.

anitasee – FIGHT!

ty and bless you.
one step

Renewedhope

One Step you make perfect sense all the time!
“The imperturbable aspect of the P/S/N/’s can, when done well, really resemble stoicism, strength, cool, unflappable”and I think that they get a huge amount of mileage from that—
True again!
My ex S woman can sleep like a baby all of the time. Although she needs Ambien and she sleep walks and night binges on food! The big cow is probably big as a house right now. But she is so comfortable living her existence while almost ruining mine 3 different times in my life. It’s business as usual with these clowns. Nothing bothers them. But I look at this imperturbable aspect as part of the cycle they go through. it’s what makes them go into the Bored part of their cycle I think. When said S woman gets this way I can almost see her hovering over a bug and playing with it until she loses interests, then flicks the thing across the room and goes about her merry way. That Bug is me of course. And every other single person who was in my role in her life.

one/joy_step_at_a_time

renewedhope –

it’s really painful, isn’t it.

it’s like a time of inoculation – wherein we badmouth the hot burner, so that we get-it-through-our-thick-skulls-not-to-touch-it-again.

Right on one step et all, And perhaps one of the most frustrating displays of imperturbability, is when they are completely flat, emotionless, and impenetrable, when confronted with an absolute bold faced lie, or a huge and obvious failure on their part.

When they refuse even a glimmer of remorse or contrition. Makes you crazy. And in time, if you keep harping on it, you do look like the crazy one. They have :let it go” they like to “think positive” they like to “move forward” etc etc.

My first big crack in the fairy tail (after having ignored countless little fissures) was a major betrayal that I won;t go into- suffice it to say it involved moving the family from our entire support base when my kids were young. Took me years to finally find out the move was not because of whatever reason he had pushed, but to flee a huge debt.

Well the betrayal and rage I felt at having been manipulated like that, of him usurping my rights to be part of the decision based on an honest account of the situation etc. was almost unbearable. I desperately wanted to leave, but of course he had me convinced we were “broke”, my kids were still in high school etc etc. So I dragged him to therapy. Where he was also unflappable.

And sure enough , two different therapists suggested I “move on” forgive and forget etc etc. Stop dwelling in the past, that is over now.? OVER? You totally disrespect me and lie to me for TEN YEARS on thousands of occasions to keep up the lie??? and I should move on?

In the hands of a good spath, therapists too can be dangerous. The one that I really liked saw me first, then agreed to see us both ( at my stupid request) then HE decided he needed to see her. Clever way to steal my shrink, and I believe TOTALLY unethical on her part. He dropped her within weeks, but of course she was no longer available for me. It boggles the mind that they actually think this stuff strough just to weaken us. Blech….

Anyhow, it took me eight more years to get out, and still I had to walk away with nothing.

Another great article in in the LF archives is about the Spath and their game of cat and mouse. Toying with their victim. Sounds like we have all been there.

Peace to all,

Cat

Dear Ox,
You hit on something that really resonated with me when you brought up the fact that yes, they DO tell the truth only to get PITY. It’s an interesting phenomenon to watch. My ex would do that and act as though the world should feel SOOOO sorry for him because after all, he has a drub problem and his youth was lousy and so and so on…. It had me grinding my teeth at times because I could see so clearly through this and KNOW he was just doing this to manipulate family members and friends. Underneath it all, he was still just as evil as evil can be. I’m glad you pointed this out because for me, it was such a trigger. I wanted to bring out the bat and doing some serious damage. Today, of course, he’s not around, but seeing and knowing these things ahead of time is a good way of heading off the garbage before it gets to me, recognizing another red flag. Thanks!

lostingrief

anitasee…
i hear you loud and clear. i couldn’t just walk away either. after 20+ years, i wanted REVENGE! and when i finally had the choice of throwing him out or … literally … dying, i chose my life. you can never ‘win’ with a spath.
and 18 months NC later, i am sometimes still so incredibly sad that i was used and spit out, that none of the glorious feelings of connectedness were real, that he lived and total lie (and by association) i too lived a lie, that i was left broken, worn to a thread, and penniless when i thought my hard work, love and generosity would pull us through.
i was just a ‘practical joke’ that he ‘pulled off.’
how touching.
i will never forgive nor forget. i hope he burns alive … slowly. fitting for a demonic creature.

Ox Drover

Dear Cat and Robxy,

Glad my little comment resonated with you. Yes, they will give us the “cold shoulder” to punish us and it can go so far as being NC with us, but they are NOT done with us, just “punishing” us. It is part of the game with many of them although there are the con-people who WILL “move on” and not turn up for months or years or ever, but it is just another part of their game.

My egg donor used to do this “not speaking to you” deal for months, to punish me, and eventually we would “pretend none of this happened” and go back to being “best friends” but now, the shoe is on the other foot and it is not part of a “game” on my part, I do NOT “miss” the games, and I realize what is going on, what has always gone on, and it is all about CONTROL—her controlling me or punishing me if I don’t do what and how she wants. Of course, her POWER over me is gone and that is frustrating to her so now she has a “cause” and that is protecting my P-son from his “mean mommie” who will fight to keep him in prison. Make sure that he has money now and after she dies, so he won’t be broke when (if) he gets out of prison. She has a CAUSE and I am the “bad guy.”

The bottom line with all dysfunctional and psychopathic relationships is all about CONTROL and playing their games. Pity is one “card” that they use to trump good sense, and my egg donor is soooo good at this one, but we have to keep our focus and realize what is going on. It is difficult for me to NOT see those I love through rose colored glasses, I have played the games so long and trivalized their bad behavior and enabled them for so long that it seems “natural” and “normal” and so keeping on a HEALTHY footing is difficult and is a CONTINUING TASK. I’ve about come to the conclusion that it will be a FIGHT for the rest of my life to maintain healthy relationships. A fight to distinguish being a friend from being a patsy, to distinguish between giving legitimate help or sharing and being an enabler.

Over the past six weeks, I have had to do some serious thinking about not only my son C, but about myself—and the thinking about myself and MY attitudes and actions, my OWN poor choices, my own fantasies, etc. and I realize I can’t change anyone else, no matter how much I love them, or trivalize what choices they have made, ALL OVER AGAIN. It is like I can do it with Person A, but have to start from scratch on Person B, C, D, E etc. I feel like an ox walking in circles around a mill; grinding, grinding, with never an end in sight, just more round and round until I drop from exhaustion or old age. When will I finally stop having to relearn the same lesson?

slimone

I feel this article, and many of the comments posted, will aid me in my conviction to protect myself. Because it clarifies that these kinds of people are void of any ability to NOT reject, and will always hold ALL others’ in contempt.

It is, in the truest sense, NOT personal. There actually is no rejection, because there is no ability on their part to SEE who and what we are. No connection whatsoever. The stupidity they subscribe to us is all a mental and emotional malfunction that has nothing at all to do with anything other than what is stewing inside them.

They do not reject ‘us’. They reject. Period.

Their inperturbability is NOT a direct reflection of how insignificant each of us are. It has nothing to do with us.

Our personal strengths and weaknesses had no bearing on their pattern of relating. And no one else’s will either. That is freeing for me to really let sink in.

slimone

Oxy,

I hear your exhaustion in that last paragraph, and I send you love and support as you continue to learn your way. You have had SO much to handle in this lifetime, and you do it, at least from where I sit in cyberspace, with so much determination and authenticity. I hope my love and respect will buoy you just a bit.

Slim

Ox Drover

Dear Slim,

THANK YOU so very much. You can’t know just how much your best wishes mean to me. Yes, it is fatigue and exhaustion, and sometimes it feels overpowering, like it will never end, and yet,, I AM so blessed and I KNOW that, but when I do feel down or “inadequate” or “ashamed,” I feel bad about feeling that way! LOL Catch 22! I DO have friends, GOOD friends, and my son D, and I AM LEARNING and though it is all slower than I wish it was, I AM making progress on the parole hearing documents and presentation, so it will come together. My son D and I are also coming up with a “fall back” plan in case my P son does get out (we should have 6 months or more warning) so “win, lose or draw” D and I WILL be OK no matter what happens. I am just tired of waiting for the other shoe to fall so we can make concrete plans–but heck, who knows what “tomorrow brings” in reality…I just have to trust that God will take care of what I can’t. Work like it all depends on me, and pray like it all depends on God. (((hugs))))

quest

one of the missions of a psychopath , I believe, is to shut their victim down mentally and emotionally as in so that the person can no longer think for themselves . They have many methods of doing this and one of them is to attack the victims logical thinking processes . This explains all the non stop chatter that tends not to make sense especially if you are having an argument with them . By saying things that do not really make sense causes the logical mind to shut down . These conversations have a way of making a kind of sense at the moment but when looking at the big picture one soon realises that it was all nonsense . The big thing is to realise that everything that the psychopath does or says is done for a reason and on purpose . Just as there are smart and stupid normal people there are also smart and stupid psychopaths . If you are unfortunate enough to run into a smart one any normal person is going to be in big trouble . The female psychopath that I was with had what seemed like a photographic memory for past conversations . She could repeat word for word things that I had said 3 or 4 weeks ago .What had me totally confused was that she would say I had said other things that I had not said . Kind of like she would acuse me of saying something that I was sure I did not say , then she would appear to back it up by repeating something that I did say . ” yeh you remember when we were discussing such and such ” which was true then she would tell me that at the same time I had said something that I was sure I did not say . At the time she also accused me of going senile and for a while I thought I was . Her ability to twist any argument arround so that it appeared to be my fault was absolutely uncanny . I now have a saying that I tell people when I suspect they may be dealing with a psychopath . If it does not make sense it is probably nonsense and if its nonsense then you are probably dealing with a psychopath . It is amazing how they can make totall nonsense sound almost logical . Ones best defense is to at least be aware that most of what is being said is rubbish . If one fails to realise this then you are in trouble . When talking to a suspected psychopath one must listen very carefully to make sure that the conversation is at least logical . If it is not be on guard or run .

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