By | November 4, 2010 132 Comments

When Bad People Do Good Things

Even bad people can sometimes behave well. That seems a strange twist on the idea of “good people behaving badly.” But it’s true. Even the skeeviest personality isn’t usually spending all day long exploiting everyone who enters his path.

Now this doesn’t mitigate his skeeviness one wit. But it’s also true that sociopaths aren’t always exploiting and mistreating others, all day long. They will be taking some time off, in different contexts, from their more unseemly behaviors.

And so sometimes, sociopaths can be nice, even very nice; sometimes they may extend themselves to others. Now we can question what motivates them when they are behaving well; probably, very often, their prosocial behaviors are driven by relatively shallow, if not manipulatively self-serving, motives.

Still, it’s fair to say that most sociopaths aren’t spending their lives 24/7 causing havoc to everyone around them; and it’s fair to suggest that, sometimes, if motivated to do so, they may even bring some cheer into others’ lives.

After all, we know these personalities can be charming and engaging; and that when they are, this isn’t necessarily, always an “act.” The sociopath can be genuinely charming and engaging, and he may enjoy, genuinely on some level, being charming and engaging.

In a sense I’m suggesting that not everything about even the sociopath is fraudulent; the sociopath, like anyone else, has genuine experiences, although we are right to question the depth of his experiences; and we are right to question his motives when he is behaving himself.

But to avoid confusion, my point is this: Beware! Do not rule-out sociopathy, or a similarly exploitative personality disturbance, simply because the individual is capable of behaving well sometimes, or even, alas, often. To do so risks our missing the significance of the dangerous, always lurking curve-balls that the even sometimes well-behaved sociopath may throw at any time (predictably or not).

One may be tempted to think, “If he can behave this well, can he really be that bad?” The answer is, yes. He can behave, sometimes, this well, and yet really be that bad!

So while I’m not necessarily saying “don’t be fooled” by his better behaviors, which may (or may not) have a genuine component to them, I am suggesting the exercising of great caution not to let the sociopath’s better behaviors distract you one bit from giving full weight to, and appreciation of, his destructive behaviors.

The latter should not be regarded as one bit less menacing and forbidding by virtue of his capacity to display the former.

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

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Great article again. This is definitely what confused me. He could seem so nice, so decent, so thoughtful and considerate. Fun, amusing, always willing to help. On the flip side, ruthless, cold, uncaring to the point of cruel and totally self absorbed. It was hard to relate the one side to the other. His good behaviour could last for long periods, his bad in short bursts. To start with. Until he no longer needed to reel me in as I was hooked. Then the bad behaviours became more frequent.

It’s the confusion as you say. How can this person seem to be so good and decent, and at the same time capable of such unpleasant behaviour? It’s these extremes I guess that we should be alert to. Most of us are pretty consistent. We react only when provoked, feel bad if we behave badly. Feel sorrow, express sorrow. Sociopaths just be whatever they want to be to gain whatever they need to gain. If they behave well, they almost seem to need to let you know. See how great I am ? See how kind I am being? When they behave badly, they seem to have no concern about their behaviour.

My experience, he could be almost like a little kid at times, very engaging. At other times, a bully. He could lie with such ease and never seemed to have any compunction about doing so. It was very hard to see with wood for the trees around him as he could flit in and out of good/bad so quickly at times you couldn’t always be sure what you were experiencing.

My biggest problem was being taken in by the good side. Every time. I just couldn’t believe someone capable of being so good, could be so very bad.

Thanks again for a great article.



I LOVE the title of this article! 🙂

and yes, their less than skeevie behavior is confusing. but people can be inadvertently good, and still overwhelmingly skeevie.


Thank you for turning the light on for me with this article. The man I am healing from often helped others using his carpentry skills to help people that could not afford repairs to their homes. Since joining LF last month, that has often confused me and blurred the lines for determining what I was really dealing with. However, as in the comment above, he made sure everyone knew of it. I often felt he undermined the value of his “good will” by bragging about it constantly to anyone that would listen.

And it just occurred to me that the majority of the recipients of his good will were often women that could possibly repay him in other ways, should he ever need a return favor…….but of course!


Bravo bravo bravo, Steve! This answers a lot of questions about the seemingly benign & benevolent actions of sociopaths—& about Jamie in particular!


So true. Even Hitler was kind and loving to his dogs, and apparently his little neice and nephew adored Uncle Dolf.
He WAS a total Psycopath, but he knew how to be nice too,obviously there was a pay off, but surely his dogs would have shyed away if hes been totally cruel and evil all the time?
Mama Gem.


gem – maybe he saw THEM as part of his pack. and the children, well they were too young and innocent to challenge him in any way.

I don’t know much about hitler – learning more these days, it seems. One of my fave comedians is Eddie Izzard, a humanist and atheist says he knows there isn’t a god (apologies to anyone this might offend), because he would have “flicked Hitler’s head off.”


How astute!!
Thank you!
BTW, anyone knows what a P looks like when he’s not up to something and thinks he’s not being watched?
I’ve seen it: blank stare, blank facial expression, absence of any sign of emotion. Wondered if he was feeling well. Felt great. The heart is beating. The soul is dead.
whatever they do, they do in a context. There is no context inside, no spark of any sort – at least in my opinion


like what you said gettingit. when i look at what i have done to reveal the spath and hide myself, i know that NO NORMAL person could do that for the number of years my spath has and not lose their centre completely. I know she has not integrated sense of self in the way an empathic person does. she’s just a big bag of con waiting for a context to suck on.


Do you know, one, that the prophet Nostrodamus predicted in one of his Quatraines that in a few hundred years time{around this century}, there would be a new arch demon in hell, called”Hister”.! He only got one letter wrong! He said that some humans were so evil that they never got to take birth again and stayed demons in hell for ever and ever. And I believe that every evil and torturous thing they did to others, gets done back to them, over and over for ever.Love, Gem.


so true, Jesus spoke of the Pharisees and those who would give to the poor only when they know people are watching.
The sociopath can live in many worlds all at the same time. when giving to the poor, he can simultaneously think and feel:
I’m a good person, I give to the needy
I’m evil, I’m tricking everyone into thinking that I’m a good human being, look at them admire me.
I’m going to con this person into thinking I’m good and soon I may need another pawn in my game and they will come in useful. What fun to make this sheep think I’m her shepard, when the day comes, I may decide to slaughter her.

All this occurs at the same time in their heads, because they are like children. Remember when you were a child and needed to lie to get out of trouble. You realized that the only way others would believe you is if you believed your own lies first. It’s normal for children but the sociopath gets better with time as he practices. They can pass lie detector tests for this reason. They can make themselves believe anything they want to.


Good article Steve!

I ponder this though……

I agree no one can be ‘bad’ 100% of the time…..but isn’t the rest of the time scheeming to get to the ‘good part’, the prize, the win.
‘Grooming time’ can appear kind, generous, nice……especially when someone is not aware that a spath is seeking a payoff.

Isn’t it all a facade, learned niceties?

Charming and engaging…..get’s a ‘reward’. There is a response that
he seeks, and receives by the behavior.
If he was a jerk, he wouldn’t be given the ‘candy’…..but a sweet smile and a hug to a stranger or a kiss on an old ladies cheek get the ‘candy’…..every time.

It may be a genuine behavior only due to knowing the rewards…..learned behavior, engrained. But I don’t buy genuine. (at least not in the spath I know). Motive I buy….genuine I don’t.

Now….I assume they can ‘feel’ something….like an orgasm. They flinch and flick in ‘pleasure’.
And an automatic reponse of pleasurable stimulation would be an erection.
I don’t think either are ‘forced’ responses. But, he get’s a ‘gain’ from an orgasm…..a pleasure.

I can’t compare spaths orgasm pleasure to any other seemingly pleasurable point in his life.
Having children, getting married, feeling the softness of a baby, holding his wife. He didn’t get anything from those things… instant gratification. No mind blowing explosion of an orgasm. Just a hug, just a child, just another day (his words exactly). Nothing was special……except an orgasm.
He used to say to me……I just want to make love to you.
No other hope or dream……but sex sucked and that’s all he wanted.
(supposedly). There was many times he’d rather masterbate then ‘make love’ to me. he’d wait for me (appear) to go to sleep THEN start the masterbation. go to great lengths to keep it quiet…..
Isn’t that all about the ‘end result’….the prize….the orgasm?
I would imagine if he didn’t derive pleasure from this…..he wouldn’t do it, OR his body wouldn’t respond to him pleasuring himself.
I would think this is Pleasure to him…….(still with manipulations though).

Or when his favorite team scores a touchdown, he will Yipp and yell. This wouldn’t strike me as a ‘fake’ response, especially when they are alone watching a game. (no one to impress and seemingly nothing to gain).

From what I’ve witnessed, the scheeming is majority, if not all hours spent. It’s the ‘appearance the strikes me as seeming nice’.
Not always ‘actively’ conning……(In appearance), but setting it up, staging the attack……working on gaining trust.
That’s still scheeming. passive behaviors…..because it is usually ‘silent’ and done with smiles.

I think in the end…’s all about the appearance. They APPEAR to be doing niceties….being kind, generous……waiting for their time to strike. They decide the timing.
I know when my spath is nice and giving to one person…..and ‘all’ he wants from them is to get access to their friend, he’s climbing the ladder to get what he wants….
This is where the friend thinks he’s fantastic, giving, kind, generous….etc….and will gladly introduce him to his ‘outside’ network.
After that, spath keeps them so separated and watered down…..neither know what hes up to. The first friend enjoys his ‘giving’, and the second friend enjoys whatever tactic he uses on them. (which is appearing nice and bearing gifts).
Then…..all are BLOWN away why such a nice guy could have screwed them so badly…..nice guys bring/bake cookies every week…..why would he go to the length of baking cookies THEN doing ‘this’ to us?
Can you believe it? He was so giving, why would he do such a thing…….
And the doubt begins……am I crazy, did I get that right? Then the benefit of doubt begins…..and the set up for screw #2, 3, 4,……….

It’s the facade…..and we can’t get sucked into ANYONE with too many ‘niceties’ ….real in appearance or not.
I’ve learned……If it seems too good to be true… DEFINATELY IS!
Nothing comes for free!!!
As adults, many of us NOW know……watch out for wolves in sheeps clothing…..the road isn’t always smooth…..and if it seems that way…….LOOK OUT….there are POT HOLES in every road and their coming right up on ya! BOOM-flat tire, when ya least expect it….right in the middle of the longest, darkest, lonliest part of the HWY, just as you took your spare tire and tools out of the car and left in your garage.
Expect the pot holes and leave your spare in the car, always inflated!!!! For the road of life.


Steve.. GREAT article! It is so true. Once out the front door Prince Charming…. in the house Prince of Darkness!
Erin…. You hit the nail right on the head!!! They feel nothing but self inflicted pleasure. My spath was an adreniline junkie! The only thing he felt was from risk of his life like skydiving and flying ultralight airplanes. I don’t mean in a safe manner either. Some have hobbies, he was obssesed with getting that euphoric high!! Porno addicted and had a past of getting obssesed on something. He is so sexualy disfuntional due to self manipulation, he had to get so rough… it felt like he ws raping me.! I rememeber screaming while fighting “what have I been , your latest experiment? you are like a mad scientist at work in your labratory?.
PS. This is my first post. I still have so much healing to do. I am free of my spath and 700 miles away from him.
Thanks to evrerybody for sharing. understanding is power and knowledge is healing!

Ox Drover

Dear Not crazy!!!!

Thank you for posting. Glad you are here and glad you are away from your psychopath! There is a “world” of wonderful information here on this blog from which to educate yourself and heal. I’m sorry you needed to find this place, but now that you are here, you will know you are NOT alone. There are others on this same road to healing.

Again, Welcome and God bless.

Ox Drover

Great Article Steve,

I’m not sure who said it here on LF but a year or so someone said (and I stole it) “he is such a nice guy when he is not robbing banks.” Your article expands on that thought so nicely. Even the BTK killer, and Ted Bundy were not raping and killing ALL the time, they at least APPEARED to be enjoying interacting with others in a prosocial way.

Was that prosocial behavior just a total fake? I don’t think so, I think my P-son enjoyed his friendships with various people, but not in the same way you or I might. It was “real” for him, but maybe not the same depth or quality of “relationship” that you or I might have had with the same person, but he enjoyed it. He also used these people for his own purposes as well, manipulated them in one way or another.

Another thing I think about my P-son and P-sperm donor is that they seem/ed to need an “audience” for their grandstanding and couldn’t take pleasure in what they did unless there was someone there to admire it (or fear it.) Both ENJOYED breaking the rules, putting one over on someone else, but it was so much more pleasurable if there was an audience to admire their rule breaking.

Thanks for this article. I think it is a sticking point for many people. I finally had it figured out, but took me a long time to do so, but many people post on here about “can he REALLY be a psychopath when he does X,Y or Z good things?” Your definite YES he can be I think is a much needed reminder to us all, and especially to those newly raw and trying to recover.


The mask of some sociopaths can be very convincing. IMHO, too much attention is focused on the classic extreme sociopath (violent, criminal) and not enough on your more common garden variety sociopath (emotional vampire).

I thought very, very highly of my x-spath despite some red flags. When he dumped me, I thought I was the issue because at that time:

1) I was open about my health problems, up to an very real HIV scare;
2) Talked about wanting to move away from a somewhat promiscuous past;
3) Openly concerned about my drinking;
4) Looked to his support when I stupidly snorted some cocaine at a party;
5) While questioning my lifestyle and looking for something real, was still overly materialistic.

His mask lend me to believe he was reserved, sorted, and “down to earth.”

In reality, I learned he was:

1) HIV positive and hid it from me;
2) Still very promiscuous, with profiles on many online dating and sex websites;
3) A very heavy and unrepentant binge drinker;
4) A confessed “recreational” drug user;
5) Very materialistic and envious.

Thus, all the things I was questioning or looking to move away from, HE WAS.


I can not speak of the insult in terms of possessing the man as “Mine”. Only the experience of the relationship/encounter was mine. Only what I experienced may I analyze because what he is or was doesn’t matter anymore to me.

Lucky I was there were no children because that does change it all.

And for the reason described in this article, it wasn’t all bad for me. On best behavior, the man was loveable. I did. And because of it made allowances for suspect behaviors that I didn’t then recognize as the bad things he did or was hiding.

Not knowing better, I allowed him to trespass on the traditions of good manners and social conduct. I let him get away with snowing me. Not because I was anxious to have a bad experience. No one is. But because I believed what was not true, And did not believe that more proof was required because he was good to me and his word was good. Because I looked at that small view of our daily interactions, I did not see all of what he was. I looked at him eyeball to eyeball with me. As though we were the only two people in the world.

But that was the small picture, not the big one. And it is a difference in a point of view that counts. When we see only the details, the broader view is hazy. And it is from both points that we must look not only at others but at ourselves.

He is who and what he is. He is relegated to a complicated life of his own making wherever that is. No doubt one that involves all the TV he wants to watch and three squares at no charge. I will never know the whole story. But, recent information suggests it may be a lot more complicated than I’d imagined earlier. Well, mox nix to me.

The most important thing he is to me is gone. Unlikely to return because the risks of doing so far outweigh the potential gain.

But, things will always look different since that experience.

I find great peace in this article Steve and thank you for that.


thanks Ox. I need all the blseeings I can get now!


No darlen…..your NOT the crazy one!

Welcome to LF, i’m glad you posted. Keep coming back for support and read for the knowledge……it’s a long tough road…..but it’s out there!

Keep your head held HIGH!



Thanks EB!!! I need to get my head HIGH once again. The damage this idiot did to me and my life is undescribeable. Talk about destroying another human’s life, self worth, joy and trust! This out of a friend of 15 yrs. It is sad that others have endured this and more BUT it is good to know that somebody out there understands… really understands the impact of these sicko’s on one’s life. i have gotten so sick and tired of friends saying “just get over him”. They don’t have a clue of the dark places these mentally manipulating people take a person. I have never been so violated and deceived in my life. Independent career woman has a head on crash with a train!!!! SPLAT!!! There went my life! My mother passed away during this train wreck and I have had to grieve her as well as my previous succesfull life, the dreams I was fooled into believing by him and the joy I had for life. Bubbly personality, hard working, confident Etc. Now as I have read on here…quote: ” depressed and shell shocked”. On top of regaining my career for a year and getting caught up in a lay off recently. MELTDOWN. Time to put it all back together! Somehow!!! Someway!!!
Thanks and blessing to you all!!!


Saw a great quote today.

“It is better to be hated for what you are than to be loved for something you are not”. Andre Gide

What a wonderful quote that describes sociopaths. If they only could live by these words.



That is a neat quote.


CZ… good quote!!!



“So while I’m not necessarily saying “don’t be fooled” by his better behaviors, which may (or may not) have a genuine component to them, I am suggesting the exercising of great caution not to let the sociopath’s better behaviors distract you one bit from giving full weight to, and appreciation of, his destructive behaviors.”

This is a quote I am giving full weight to. Mine is on his best behavior on his quest to suck me back in to the relationship. I know there are two sides to him and I can’t forget that for a single moment. They will try with patience and tenacity to get the ultimate goal and I marvel at their determination.

This is an article that is timely and much appreciated.


behindblueeyes, quote, “Thus, all the things I was questioning or looking to move away from, HE WAS.”

It took me years and years to fully absorb this fact in my life. He knew he was everything I did not want to be involved with, and some things that I shared with him, he was doing worse while making me feel like crap that ‘I did that’.

Thank you for posting that. Simply put from someone else can clarify so much sometimes.



darlin, this just blew me away. I couldn’t believe you said it so completely. I have to paste it here.

“I think in the end”’s all about the appearance. They APPEAR to be doing niceties”.being kind, generous—waiting for their time to strike. They decide the timing.
I know when my spath is nice and giving to one person”..and ’all’ he wants from them is to get access to their friend, he’s climbing the ladder to get what he wants”.
This is where the friend thinks he’s fantastic, giving, kind, generous”.etc”.and will gladly introduce him to his ’outside’ network.
After that, spath keeps them so separated and watered down”..neither know what hes up to. The first friend enjoys his ’giving’, and the second friend enjoys whatever tactic he uses on them. (which is appearing nice and bearing gifts).
Then”..all are BLOWN away why such a nice guy could have screwed them so badly”..nice guys bring/bake cookies every week”..why would he go to the length of baking cookies THEN doing ’this’ to us?
Can you believe it? He was so giving, why would he do such a thing—.
And the doubt begins—am I crazy, did I get that right? Then the benefit of doubt begins”..and the set up for screw #2, 3, 4,—”.”


Welcome, I’mNotCrazy. Even your name is right. We might be the damaged ones, & we might have our own little insanities, but we’re not so crazy that we can’t see what the really SICK ONES did to us…..& what they did so well that we questioned our own sanity….as BlueEyes said, we’re open about who we are, our woundedness, lack of complete wholeness, our pains, & where we fall short of what we want to be. And they exploit those. And use them against us after they rip our hearts out. It’s the most wicked cruelty….like Little Red Riding Hood & the Big Bad Wolf disguised as gentle gramma, so kind, so loving, so cannibalistic….we believe, & they so easily deceive.

Yeah. “Depressed & shell-shocked”. Now, even 6 months out, I find myself saying at least 10 times an hour: “How could you do this to me? Why did you do this to me, Jamie?” & then “God, why did he do this to me? Abba! Repay him in kind for what he did to me!!”

And then I try to remember to take the time to give thanks for all that I DO have & have left & for all the good things that I have faith that my Father has ahead for me.

I always counted Extreme Faith as one of my greatest gifts. And I count his damaging that as the worst of everything Jamie did to me. I just noticed today in a picture of *her* taken 2 yrs before he left me that she was wearing a wedding band. And all that time I was hoping, believing, & praying every day that all his work would succeed & all our dreams & plans would come true. And there was no “us’ in any of that time. It hurts. Really bad.



I was fortunate that my relationship was short-term. It just came at the worst possible moment in my life.

Thus, when the x-spath gave me the “just want to be friends stuff,” I naturally assumed it was all due to me, for the reasons I listed above. He “helped” matters with some blame shifting and gaslighting, such that I wondered I had remember things he said to me incorrectly…

On the surface I had met a very charming, quiet, almost shy guy. His email, texts and phone conversations where always polite. He asked about friends of mine he had met and showed real concern for a friend of his who was hospitalized.

Thus, in “controlled” situations, he came across as a very “good” person. However, on those occasions when I inadvertently came close to unmasking him (his HIV status), I experienced outright bizarre behavior. I think we can all look back on our experiences with sociopaths that only become explained when the mask falls and we know the truth.

Finally, I must admit that his “good guy” aspects and subtle “pity play” still leave me wondering. However, when this occurs, I remind myself that for all the kindness and generosity I showed him, I was never once thanked. When faced with the difficult situation of *perhaps* not being comfortable enough with me regarding his HIV status, he lied when other explanations would have worked. And when I was faced with the worst health crisis in my life to that point, he dumped me, by email, knowing I was bed ridden. To this day, it is incomprehensible to me that somebody HIV+ could do that somebody confronting the real possibility of that disease.


behind blue eyes, I’m so glad you didn’t have to suffer this long term. The devistation is no less real and incomprehensible, I think, but I’m thankful all the same that you weren’t in it for a long time.


This is an excellent article. Just another thing I needed to read, before I go to bed! Feeling a little more light-hearted, now 🙂



Thanks. Its a shame people only come here after the fact. I now look for subtle clues in people I meet, even if they are only friends.

Perhaps by posting our experiences, it will at least help those struggling with the denial of being in a relationship with a sociopath.

I was in denial for over a year, despite the checklist of traits and advice by several, including those here.

However, when an experience or observation “clicked,” my view changed overnight. It was jaw-dropping.


I fell for and cried over the freaking cookies. Along with everything else that “appeared” to be so nice including the daily breast show. I guess it brings much more pleasure to demolish hearts, dreams, innocence, reputation, careers or whatever real people have to this group of life form whatever you want to call them. Great article Steve, and genuine thoughts everyone else. Things they totally lack are empathy and remorse. I kept waiting for an apology for all the crap, lies, and cruelity I experienced, but none has come. I am still waiting, but I have resigned to the fact that it will never come because she did get pleasure from all of this- How can you be sorry for something you wanted to see happen in the first place? It takes a while for the revelation to set in that there are people with motivations entirely different from decent/normal- ok devilish if you want me to go there. And to answer the question about how can there be a God if Hitler was allowed to breathe so long- Well if there are devils then you have to believe in the opposite; a true and holy God. And yes geminigirl it may take a while for him to burn….


What have I learned from all of this? Well appreciate the true love that you receive in this world. Hold on to what is good, and do good yourself. Why be like the piece of sh*^? You will end up looking like a piece of sh*& and smelling like a piece of sh*& if you continue to play their games. Remove yourself from the foolishness- you will smell better.


EB’s words are true, it’s about appearances.
Maybe they look for people like us, who are true to their appearances. People, like us, who don’t need to pretend because we actually like who we are. hey, maybe that’s what attracts them to us, they envy our ability to like ourselves. this is an interesting thought… I’m going to give it alot more attention.
They perhaps envy our honesty/ innocence so much that they need to destroy it. LET THEM TRY. It isn’t going to work here. whatever they want to accomplish, it serves one purpose: it helps me distinguish right from wrong. If I ever have any doubts, I just ask myself, “what would the spath do?” then I do/feel/believe the opposite. After 25 years, I can see the pattern and I know what they want, but I’m not going to acquiesce.
I remember, several years ago, I was talking to my mom and said, “I just figured out how to make decisions that never fail to work out right. I just ask (my P) what to do and then I do the opposite” LOL.
I had noticed a pattern that worked, I just didn’t know WHY it worked. I thought that my P was just really really stupid. But now I know that he would expect me to follow his advice and then he would sabotage the results.

Ox Drover

They also prey on each other as victims, or on their dupes, and dopplegangers as well, they are like rabid wolves and will cooperate for a time even with each other, but I still love the line my egg donor shouted when they had turned on her at last.

They had of course been in league with the egg donor and I WAS THE GUY IN THE BARREL and they were all shoving it to me, each one seeming to enjoy the sport more than the other….but when they turned on HER she screamed in surprise and agony “BUT THEY WERE ALWAYS SO RESPECTFUL OF ME!”

Wait a minute let’s examine this.

You saw them PERSECUTE ME.

You saw them be DISRESPECTFUL OF ME.

You saw them be HATEFUL AND MEAN TO ME.

You saw them, even aided them in HURTING ME.

And now YOU ARE SURPRISED WHEN THEY HURT YOU? Did you HONESTLY THINK that if they would treat ANY living HUMAN BEING the way they treated me, that you were SPECIAL and that they would NEVER treat YOU that way if it suited their purpose to?

Did you think that MAYBE they treated you so “respectfully” because it is much easier to con money and cooperation out of an old woman that you show outward “respect” for than it is to say “Hey, you old bat, give me your money!” You FELL for it. SURPRISE!

But when people will cooperate with you to con someone else, or when people cooperate with you to hurt someone else, don’t act surprised when they start to HURT YOU and CON YOU.

You knew what they were, you knew they were mean, you knew they lied, and you knew they were hurting someone else, but you learned you weren’t so special to them after all.


good one Ox! I remember thinking about the spath… you have no respect for any type of authority, what made me think you would respect me in a relationship? He didn’t want anybody telling him what to do in the big city… that’s why he moved out to the country where there is no city/code enforcement regulations to tell him what to do. Now that I think about it the sicko one up’ed his own self!!!! Now that’s bad!!!! I think he tried to one up LIFE as a whole!!! HA HA!!! Life is not so great where he is! Now that’s funny!!! LOLOLOLOL!

Ox Drover

We just need to keep in mind that if someone will Fark someone else over TODAY they will FARK us over tomorrow.

They are forever joining forces with one person or group to persecute and abuse another one and it is just like in 4th grade how the cliques keep forming disbanding and reforming, they have no loyalty to anyone one, just to creating chaos.

Psychopaths show us who they are, we just need to BELIEVE THEM, and believe it applies to US, too, because it WILL.



My heart goes out to you – it is horrible to realize that your loved one is/was a fraud, not being sincere about the “future” that you both had planned out for yourselves. It is unfathomable that anyone would do this to another person, stringing them along with broken promises. You can bet that his past wife was treated similarly and the present wife probably is learning some things about him that aren’t to her liking. Sociopaths lack COMMON DECENCY. I hope that your thoughts take you to a better place today.


You are so right, they will treat us as poorly as we have seen them treat another. he had a friend of many years called “phyllis”, he did nothing but put her down, now take into consideration that she is a medicated bipolar, but he was up her arse and criticising her constantly.(mainly for her taking meds, I think he knows he needs meds but refuses to comply with what “he needs” ) What the FARK was that? He complained to me about her… I finally got tired of hearing it and asked him, “why do you keep expecting somethiing out of someone that doesn’t have the ability to give it?”
Where I am stuck in healing is….. I was so proud of where I had worked hard to be, my community was so nice, clean, pristine and secure (cookie cutter ?YES, that’s how you get a decent place to live). That’s what he could not tolerate, I guess being eccentric and needing to be able to drive across his front yard and park on his property wherever he wants… was the middle finger to being a “decent contribution to society.” 100 yr old house he lives in and NO heat/ NO AC barely an indoor bathroom and he thinks it’s GRANDIOSITY because it is paid for….. Needs more $$$ than he will ever make in a lifetime to be a decent comfortable place to live. I called it a tent! It’s old and falling down, no insullation, nothing sealed like windows and doors, musty(mold ridden), no climate control. Oh but we were going to work on it together…. that’s why he had an ultralight airplane in the yard and I had no heat in the house. Little house on the prarie!!! He needs some trashy single wide Honey that thinks that is the Taj Mahal!!!! Not someone like me that has worked hard and wants more out of life. I’m not materliastic… he cheated on me also, there was NO bond, no reason to stay, after I realized that I had been deceived.
I want my old life back… my cookie cutter, my clean, pristine and secure home/life. I just can’t muster it up. Some mornings I wake up and have to remind myself that he isn’t here to put me down anymore. That the sun is going to shine in my life today and he won’t take it away from me. OMG,,, Sorry for rambling… but I need to get this out!!!

Ox Drover

Dear Notcrazy,

Well, each of us wants different things in life! That’s what makes it so grand! We are not all alike. I live comfortably in the country in a “real” house with inside plumbing and heat and AC, but I can park in the yard if I want to or pee in the yard if I want to as it is far enough back in the woods that no one can see the house from any road! It’s mine and I love it! My little hole in the woods with my old cedar fence posts for ground timbers around the flower beds of wild ferns and wild flowers I brought in from the woods, and buried stones for a walk way, but a PLACE is not home to me any more. I realized that when I had to leave this place because of the stalker my P son sent to kill me. I love this farm, it was my grandparents’ farm, my emotional attachment to a spot on the earth, but….it is really only a building of sticks and stones, my “home” is where I hang my hat. I can be happy here or I can be happy living in a tent! Happiness is attached to ME not to a place.

After my rather crazy divorce back in 1980 where I was literally left homeless with two kids and no money and a cat and two changes of clothes, I managed in a rented house until I could complete my college degree and get back to work at something that would support us (my advanced practice nursing degree) we lived on a shoe string until I got out of college and went back to work at a professional job. It’s been tough at times since then, but I’ve always used my common sense about spending money, saving some no matter how poor I am, and working toward a goal for a house that was paid for. I got there, but I also realize that even if something happens and I lose this place for good (I was gone almost a year living in a recreational vehicle until the stalker’s arrest) I realize I am still gonna be OK no matter where I live or what I live in.

Having my happiness and security be INTERNALIZED rather than attached to a house or a place is a big change for me.

You can “get back” your secure home life no matter where you live, but it has to come from inside. Make the place you live, no matter where it is or what it is, be YOUR SANCTUARY. Make it as neat as you can, as clean as you can. One talent I’ve always had is to find furniture and decorative items and make a place, even a rented apartment “mine”—even now I have the most eclectic collection of furniture and items in my house, a mixture of my favorite items, some antiques, some new things, some “found” and “repurposed” things but it is ME. Individually ME and there is no other house like it in the world. Yet when people come in for the first time, I can hear their intake of breath and they always say “Wow! I LOVE YOUR HOUSE!” But each piece was chosen carefully and none of it is expensive, but it is all high quality and nice. (I love buying stuff at auctions too) I have a chair I bought in new condition for $100, leather covered, etc. and I found it on line for $3500 new! I didn’t realize it when I bought it that it was such an expensive chair but I knew I liked it, that it was quality and that it would “go with” my other living room furniture and so I bought it! Plus, it sits sooooo nice!

But if I had to leave here and leave everything I have behind, I’d still “fix up” a new place just the way I’d like it, and make it mine and indivdually ME! So look at this as an opportunity to make a NEW PLACE for yourself that is JUST YOU! (((Hugs))))


Thank you, bluejay,

your really heartfelt note brot me to tears. Yeah, I really do feel sorry for myself, dammit!! I am sad daily for what happened to *ME*—-the ME I was, & all that I thot I was, & all that I believed in & trusted in & had total faith in! I never thot I was like a perfect person, by any stretch of the imagination, but I sure’s hell never thot I was so “inferior” a person that someone would do what Jamie did to *ME*! I was so sure for 8 yrs that we were Perfect for Each Other! I knew we’d been going thru some down times for 6 mos before he walked out, but Ida never dreamed in a milyun yrs that it was becuz he was sweating about how he was gonna complete what’d been going on for 4 yrs by being able to ease right on out of my life one morning! I cried a river of tears, begging for his forgiveness for 2 months (before he finally copped to being married), trying to find a way to repent from all *my badness*!

I loved him in spite of all his flaws & thot he loved me the same way. I know now that, however short I was from being perfect, there wasn’t anything “inferior” about me–other than I wasn’t a much tastier, younger, wealthier catch! Still & all, like so many of us freshly wounded ones here say, it’s gonna take a long time til I can get past the damage that he did to *ME*, apart from the damage he did to my life!

I’m finding it hard to trust anyone these days….not even myself.


Hugs back at ya Oxy!
Living in the country is great, just not with an spath. Being from South Florida 4 seasons was a change for me and I liked it. seeing it snow for the first time in my life was breath takingly awesome!
You are a rock with all that you have endured. I just typed away and somehow lost the darn thing! Oh well.. i am in the house I inhereted from mom and it is the home i grew up in. There is so much yucky going on at once! i am blessed that I had this to come back to. as the mask was coming off of my spath mom died! I came back here and to my old job which i just recently got laid off. The housing market here is a bust! and undesireables moved in close to me ( street level illegal activities of all kinds) .
I have done some ‘me’ decorating and I love a good bargain as well. auctions, thrift stores and garage sales! Lot’s of loss all at once and being here I have regurgitated my whole childhood. Grieving mom, reliving the past and trying to heal from my spath… Whew!! I am worn out!Don’t forget about swatting at the bad guys too! but i don’t make any irrational decisions or blow money. i thought if i came back here with my job back that life would be grand again. wrong… much healing time needed. yes, I am better off than where i was with spath. I read on here about functioning in our dysfunction, that is all i have been doing. i want my joy,pride and happiness back. i hope reaching out to the people that really understand the damage an spath can do will help with all this. sometime i feel like i am ready for the nut house!
Thanks for sharing


The shock of finding out what you have really been dealing with is a horrible stage, I have found that acceptance is the first step in healing. Watching the mask fall off of the spath and realizing that you have been deceived is such a violated feeling. I am new to this healing and I so understand how you feel. I have come to the conclusion that time, understanding, knowledge and sharing with those that have already been down this path are the best tools to start healing with. Sorry you are in pain. Just post and get it out of you! I see there are surviviors and “we” will be ok in the end.

Ox Drover

Dear notthecrazy1,

I(t seems like the MULTIPLE TRAUMAS that go along with the chaos of the s-path makes it that much worse!!! I was dealing with a whole NEST OF SNAKES AT ONCE, and I didn’t know which one just bit me at any one time. I was dancing around so crazy that I just kept stepping on them and getting bitten, falling down and breaking my neck and legs!

Remember the old deal about “it’s hard to drain the swamp when you’re up to your arse in alligators?” Well I added one to that, AND SOMEONE SETS YOUR PANTS ON FIRE while you’re trying to do it. With your pants on fire it seems all you can do is fall back into the swamp into the mouths of the alligators. I felt like that.

I lost my husband in July, the next January my step father that I adored and cared for died after 18 months of cancer, but believe it or not, it was a “good” time for him and me, we got to be so close and he was such a good guy, but after he was gone, my egg donor morphed into a monster along with all the other alligators! I just lost my strength to deal with so many alligators at once.

Concentrate on one at a time, one problem, one grief, and try to peel that one back before you move on to the next one. I know that’s hard, but it keeps it from being quite so over whelming I think.

God bless you and just keep on battling them…and being GOOD to yourself. PUT yourself first! Put the most important thing first and like Maslov’s pyramid, just start at the tip and work your way down….get air first, then water, then food, and so on, the BASICS and the other things will fall into place. If you are fighting for AIR TO BREATHE nothing else matters, but once you have that you have to have water, then food, then shelter and so on….it really does make sense. (((Hugs))) and God bless.


Oxy hugs!!!
what an insightful person you are! I needed to learn about Maslov’s pyramid. never heard about it before. i did a search and now have bookmarked it. It starts at the bottom with basic necessities and goes up in levels.

what i am trying to express is that i thought i was at the top of the pyramid before spath and i worked hard to get there. spath brought me back to the bottom level and i can’t get to the next level. I keep stepping on the snakes and breaking my neck and legs!!!!! even though i have my blessings. my motto:” through my tears, I see my blessings”!
I never take anything for granted.OMGoodness what an eye opener you have been tonight. I have a little from each level but I do not feel at the top, there are missing pieces from some levels and it makes it all cave back to the bottom. Darn swamp and snakes! Well my pants aren’t on fire anymore and haven’t been for awhile,,,,, time to get those pants off and get a new pair that has not been burned. and go back to fighting the snakes. maslov basically expressed in that pyramid, all things in balance. I had that( or thought I had it) and have not been able to find it again yet. too many snakes.. I love your analogies……. I am on an average day a strong, intelligent and hard working career woman, who knew my life was going to cave in on me like this? Add perimenopause to that! And an ill brother that I have to deal with. Too many snakes!!!! Thanks again and God bless you! Hugsss
I’m not the crazy one after all!

Ox Drover

Dear Notthecrazy1,

No, you aren’t crazy in the sense that you are insane, but YES, THEY MAKE US “CRAZY!” Stress is another thing that you need to take into consideration. Google “HOlmes and rahe stress test.”

It gives points to different events in your life over a 3 year period and if you score over 300 you are more at risk for illness or serious accident. I had over 3,000 points in about 18 months.

Believe me, STRESS in high levels along with the anxiety it THINK.

I was “crazy” as a bessie bug for over a year. I could not tolerate even the least amount of stress and was like a cowed dog huddling in the corner wondering where the next kick was coming from—and every day it seemed another kick came.

It has been since August 2007 when the Trojan Horse Psychopath stalker and my DIL psychopath were arrested for trying to kill my oldest biological son—and we discovered evidence that my P-son who is in prison for murder had sent the Trojan horse to kill me–but fortunately I got warned (thank you God!) in advance and literally fled for my life with my adopted son. My oldest biological son and his wife were partly in on the scheme but my son didn’t know the thing entailed murder of me, then my mother, and ultimately him and his wife, along with my adopted son…so the story is so insane I had plenty of right to be INSANE and CRAZY. Since then, there have been other things and other learning experiences, but I have been on the road to healing since that arrest, but still had a long way to go from the previous 18 months…

So if you feel crazy sometimes, don’t let it worry you. Or if you ACT crazy sometimes or cranky, or irritable, those are all part of the stress behavior that is normal. If you weren’t acting abnormal in an abnormal situation it would be abnormal. LOL

I’m glad that you got some food for thought from my posts. Believe it or not, I GET more out of being here than I GIVE and that’s why I’m still here. I learn something new every day here. I see something in someone else’s story that applies to me, to a new step I need to look at.

This healing is a JOURNEY not a destination—there are always things to learn, to grow and to improve.

We have often talked about the healing being like peeling an onion. You work through one layer and there is another one, and another one and another one….before you finally get to the core of things.

There were so many layers to my healing and I peel each one away and then the next…all the way back to my childhood which I see now was not a nurturing one. I see what about my background and my genetic make up that made me tend to react the way I did many times, why I allowed the psychopaths to suck me back in, or if I got away from one, to allow another one to replace them.

I learned to “function in my dysfunction”–I can’t remember who said that the other day but it is SO GOOD—someone remind me who said it! I have no memory! CRS!

That one phrase sums up my entire LIFE until lately. Functioning in my dysfunction. WOW! PROFOUND!

Glad you are here! Keep on learning, keep on growing, and take care of YOU! (((hugs))) and God bless.


Thanks again for your sharing. I think I feel satisfied for tonight. With dinner and a few glasses of red wine I am tired and ready for sleep. Hopefully true rest. It’s hard to rest when you are killing snakes and breaking your neck. Where are you on “our” planet?
Yes, I read on this site about functioning in our dysfuntion and thinking we are OK, when we are not OK. I have absored so much between here and a local support wesite, I can’t recall exactly where it was. As I said before you are a rock and have delt with much more than I have ever been exposed to. you are correct about this being a journey and not a destination…. but I want to get to my destination. My secure abode! I am a results driven person and i want to be on top of the pyramid once again!
Yes anxiety has me and has had me loonier than a bed bug! I love your way of wording the following……

“was like a cowed dog huddling in the corner wondering where the next kick was coming from—and every day it seemed another kick came.”

God Bless You, Hugs and Sweet Dreams!
Not Crazee!!!!

Ox Drover

Where am I on our planet? I’m located in the US in the southernn/central state of Arkansas just about 60 miles NW of Little Rock our state Capitol lcity.

Born and raised in this state but lived in sxeveral cities here. Left home at 17 after 1 yr of college went with my sperm donor and did lwild life photography in south America, central america and African for a couple of years, mopved to California married, had two boys, and husband and I moved to Arkansas, divorced, then went back to college, finished up degree in advanced nursing—then 7 yrs later married a dear friend and we were happy until he died inJuly 04.

I missed him terribly and got involved for a short time with a p-BF, but it was just more drama but glad he’s gone. I’m content rigfht now to be single. It has its advantages. Focusing on myself!

Been here on LF since the summer of 07 and I’l probably hang around here til Donna runs me off!

Well, My eyes are closing so I think I will hit the hay Good nihhyt



What an exciting life you’ve led.
I would lov eot hear your stories from photographing wild life.
How cool! ; )

Ox Drover

There’s a lot of interesting thins to do in this world and I’ve managed to do some of them but I can tell you right now BORING has a great deal going for it. PEACE FOR ONE THING!



wow oxy!
you have led an interesting life. and fled from murder!
You aren’t that far from me. i don’t know why i thought you were not in the US. I guess being new here and absorbing so much at once.
I feel better after sharing and getting this out of me. Thank you so much for clarifying things for me and your support. I should have gone for counseling when i left him, but i was convinced (by spath) that i was crazy and i didn’t know what to do. So i just drug myself out of bed everyday and went to work came home and repeated for 5 days a week, ( fell apart and grieved mom/went through house on the weekends).thinking that as time would go by my wounds would heal themselves. Partially denial, not knowing which wound to heal first. I fled from him on nothing but pure adreniline, raw nerves and anger. in a survival mode. now that i have been laid off my meltdown came down on me. i fell apart. i discovered LF a few months ago and could not believe it wasn’t me and i’m not crazy. what i was feeling was real! I guess that is the acceptance part and a very painful part. That I was screwed so bad!!! i remeber the harder he got on me, the harder i got on myself for making that BIG mistake in my life , both of us were beating me. as i peeled the masks off he got worse on me. before i gave up i tried everything to make it work. just too much wrong and he gave me nothing to work with. after all the poetry, flowers and promises of commitment and love, after he got me up in South Carolina isolated the masks started showing their edges. I was there almost 2 years. OMGoodness…… what a deceived person i was! I did go to Safe House up there for a few counseling sessions, i knew my copeing skills were shot. they asked if he had ever been diagnosed bipolar, i know he didn’t take meds but there was defintely something wrong with him. then i got my old job back and moved back here. running all on raw nerves and went right back into work. and here i am now, trying to heal and make sense of all of this.
Thanks for listening!
I’m not the crazy one!!!!

Ox Drover

Dear Notcrazy,

No you are NOT crazy in the sense that we’ve always thought of it, but YES, he did DRIVE YOU CRAZY (where you saw things HIS way) and got you to accept UN-REALITY AS REALITY. That is called “Gaslighting” if you are not familiar with that term, GET familiar with it, there are books on it (amazon has great books for pennies and I order mine from there used, always get great service and cheap) It is essentially where they make us “see” black as white, white as black, up as down, and down as up. It is named after an old movie where a husband “gaslighted” his wife til she thought crazy.

There is a big difference between thinking crazy and BEING crazy. Got it? Trying to believe them and what they say, yet seeing the differences between what we SEE and what they SAY Throws reality out the window. It is called “crazymaking” by those of us who have gone through it. (most of us).

Maybe your losing your job is God’s way of giving you a break from having to get up and go to work and “pretend everything’s wonderful” (that takes strength believe me that would better be focused on getting YOU HEALED.)

I was able to retire from work during all this stressful situation, thank you Jesus, but of course retire at a MUCH LESS pension than I could have had if I could have worked another 6 years. I was 57 when I retired, BUT I also realize that Ii was NO longer safe to practice my profession. I might have hurt someone. I have limited short term memory now, where prior to this it was over the top outstanding. So though my “golden years” of retirement will be “copper penny” years of retirement financially, I am not in want at all and have everything I NEED and many things that are “gravy.” So I am BLESSED and I realize that those dollars were not nearly as important as me having the time and energy to focus on ME now instead of taking care of everyone else. So look at the lay off as an OPPORTUNITY to focus on YOU, and that YOU DESERVE this time to do that. I realize that TIME is much more important than money most of the time. So if you have a shelter, food, and enough clothes to cover your butt and TIME to focus on you, then you are RICH beyond measure.

Oh, BTW many psychopaths are ALSO bi-polar AND?OR ADHD so you may have had a TRIFECTA, who knows.

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