An unsettling theme
appears in some of the comments readers post here. I hear regularly from people who tell me there is no way they will ever be able to protect themselves from another psychopathic victimization. They feel powerless and hopeless, at the mercy of fate or luck or the benevolence of those who cross their paths. After all, they say, psychopaths are so powerful, so crafty, so… not really human. This belief is dangerous because when you imbue them with other-worldly power, you are left powerless against such a force.
In the acute aftermath of my involvement with a psychopath, it seemed to me I had been involved with a magician, or the devil himself. How else could he have done what he did? It was totally out of left field, something I could never have anticipated or prevented because I never even knew it was a possibility. I was blindsided, manipulated, disassembled, and left in pieces. I visited the victim forums online looking for support, validation, and an explanation — and many times I saw psychopaths referred to as Evil or as Aliens or The Devil or some other sort of Supernatural Being who was Armed with Superpowers that Mere Humans are Powerless Against. I was traumatized and bewildered, and in light of what I’d experienced, it seemed to me this could very well be true. Many of you who have experienced a psychopath understand what I’m saying. It was just that bad, just that breathtakingly unfathomable and incomprehensible.
But as time went on and I learned about psychopaths and how they work, I stripped them of their supernatural status. Is their behavior evil? Yes, but they are not evil beings unleashed from the depths of hell. Are they so different that they seem like aliens? Sure, but they are not actual aliens. Are they so skilled at manipulation that they seem like magicians? Certainly, but they are not Merlin, complete with a wizard’s hat and a magic wand. To give them such status makes them omnipotent…and leaves us powerless in comparison.
Mary Ellen O’Toole, PhD., a forensic psychologist and former FBI profiler, says “Using the term ‘monster’ throws us back to the 18th century when werewolves and vampires were blamed for violent crimes. We’ve come a long way since then and we know so much more about criminal behavior. Similarly, ‘Evil’ has no legal or behavioral meaning. It implies demonic possession… Understanding what they are will help you to understand their behavior. Thinking of Ariel Castro (who kidnapped three young women and held them prisoner for eleven years) as an evil monster may make us feel better, but it does nothing to further our understanding of what happened and maybe how to prevent it in the future. Words matter and labels make a difference.”
Consider this: Psychopaths look at us with disgust for falling for their tricks, games and manipulations. Doesn’t that say they don’t really think they’re so amazingly clever and powerful? So why should we think they are? We’re on to them now, and that’s worth a lot more than we might believe, if only we’d believe it.
So if psychopaths aren’t supernatural beings with amazing superpowers, why do some of us believe that they are? According to Sartre, magic is dominant when control over our experience is weak:
“Magical beliefs and the fearful reactions based on such beliefs are the result of the state of uncertainty we are in, created by this challenge and by the negation of our expectations. Our feelings come from the conviction of loss of control and the sense of helplessness we feel when our cognitive system can neither assimilate our experience into its own structure nor adapt itself to the structure of the experience.”
Remember the All-Powerful Wizard of Oz and how he turned out to be the mere mortal trickster hiding behind the curtain? It’s a bit like that. I’m not saying a psychopath is actually like the kind and bumbling old guy the wizard turned out to be. What I’m saying is that when you divest the psychopath of his or her above-human supernatural status by learning how he or she really operates, you’ll bring him down several notches to a more manageable level, one that will leave you feeling you’re not completely without power.
This doesn’t mean you won’t be at risk, and it’s not meant to make you over-confident, which could potentially put you at even more risk. It is simply to see them for what they really are, to de-mystify them, and to recognize that what you’ve experienced, and all you’ve learned about them since then, and what you’ve done to shore up your defenses (like developing boundaries and knowing your vulnerabilities), can help protect you from future victimization.
Current research says that psychopaths are born neurologically different. This may or may not combine with the environment they’re raised in to determine the final outcome. One prominent theory says that in a psychopath’s brain the amygdala is not connected to the pre-frontal cortex, meaning the emotions are not connected to the decision-making processes or other executive functions. This neurological difference is obviously very significant (especially to those of us who have experienced it). It leaves a person without a conscience, without most emotions, and without the ability to feel love or experience remorse. It creates a callous and coldly analytical person whose thoughts and actions are instrumental and self-serving (summed up as: predatory).
Bereft of the usual human drives to bond with others, experience love, or create close relationships — yet still in possession of an intelligent, curious mind and plenty of energy — they’re driven to do something. There are a lot of hours to fill in a day. So they will do what they’re capable of doing and what is within their nature to do, and some of that is to manipulate and use others for personal gain or stimulation. While their differences are significant, they’re not supernatural.
In your recovery, you’ll get to the point where the psychopathic bond is finally broken (yes, it will happen) and your future lies in front of you. Will you go forth in fear or with confidence? One way you can go on with confidence is to ditch the belief that psychopaths are some sort of inexplicable, inhuman beings that you are powerless against. Believing that will do nothing to help you, and it will definitely hinder you.
♥ Thank you for reading.
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74 thoughts on “Psychopaths are Not Supernatural Beings With Superpowers”
I absolutely LOVE you and your website. Thank you for all you do!
I’ve learned to create boundaries. And I’m teaching my children to create boundaries. And I’m helping others too, because of you.
So happy to hear it. Thank you so much. What you’re doing for your children is priceless and oh so important. One of the best gifts you can give them.
Scary to think more N/Ps are being born thru ‘genetics ‘ or brought up w early abuse or both. I thought they eventually destroyed everyone they ‘befriended’. Not actually stay w anyone even for narcissistic supply. I do want to know how they pick and choose. I guess cause I challenged him and maybe others do not I was dumped. But if the rest of humanity is nothing to a P, I imagine they get tossed and trashed like garbage eventually.
Thank you for your work you are dead on . I feel i will never be the same after an en counter with a female psychopath. God bless all.
You’re welcome. Thank you for letting me know. Blessings to you, too.
The devil is real with real supernatural power. If you’ve known a real psychopath then you come to know that. Thankfully God is stronger.
If you feel targeted by the devil you probably are being. Maybe you pose some kind of threat to him. Dr Hare is the authority on psycopaths and if you read betwen the lines he understands that it is the devil you’re dealing with. That’s why they’re all the same. It’s the same person.
While psychopaths seemingly operate from the same script, I believe it is stereotypical behavior rather than proof they’re all just like the devil, or are actually devils. The devil is very powerrrful and we need god to fight him…which means we are POWERLESS. That’s what this post is trying to debunk.
I’ve never gotten the feeling that Dr. Hare believes psychopaths are the devil, although he does say he feels powerless against them even with all he knows, so you may be reading correctly between the lines in some way. But still, I don’t buy that. I think Dr. Hare could protect himself quite well, or at least as well as possible. I was going to leave his viewpoint out of it, but here it is. Thank you for your comment!
I agree with Mike about the devil being real, and that all pshycopaths are from him. The bible is very clear throughout the entire Bible that these people exist. When the Bible talks abt Satan and his schemes they very much resemble the exact same model of deception the psychopath uses. The Bible also talks about those that will never chose God. There are SO many verses that cover these comparisons I can’t write them out, but I highly encourage anyone to do their own research.
I also agree with you in that we can not feel powerless toward the psychopath. By seeing the psychopath as the devil, or a defendant of the devil does not necessarily leave us powerless. Do we have the power to fight the devil without God? Absolutely not! But all we have to do is speak the name of God through Jesus, and the battle will begin for us, on our behalf, and we become anything but powerless. Recognizing a psychopath for what he is, and from where the source of his schemes come from only created in us a restless feeling that can lead us into a deeper faith, and more fervent prayers for God to fight the battle that we can not handle on our on. Only God can see the deception. I have questioned many times why God would have allowed me to even come in contact with one. I have prayed “Lord, I can not recognize evil when it is disguised. Please protect me from it. Please keep it away from me, my kids, my family, and off of my property!”. But it crept by unnoticed. I have questioned my faith continuously for the past three years since I left my psychopath, but those questions have lead me into a deeper search for answers, a greater faith, a stronger mind, and a wisdom I did not have before. It has in began to make me into the woman I always desired to be, and prayed about becoming. Hence, the Bible tells us God will use evil to form us into who we were created to be. It has been a very hard and long road for me emotionally, and it is still not over yet, but even though I see the devil at work through my psychopath, I in no way feel powerless! With the power of Christ working in me, and through me, I feel stronger and more powerful than I ever have. Evil DOES exist. And we MUST recognize it for what it is.
One last note. If I have a complete trust in God, and in His word, then I would have to believe that He loves all people. I have to believe He can cast out all evil. I have to believe He can transform anyone He choses. And I have to believe He can ‘move mountains!’. Therefore, I have to believe that God could transform any and all psychopaths for His glory, rather than allow them to be used for Satan’s glory. The anger inside me wants God to poor out His wrath most of the time, but in all honesty I want nothing but peace and restoration between us. The bitterness, and anger, and shame never seem to completely go away, as long as I know he is being allowed to prey on others, while making me out to be the bad person.
I don’t want you to question your faith, but I would like you to consider something:
When you ask god to help you, maybe he helps you by sending you to places like this where you can GAIN THE KNOWLEDGE YOU NEED TO GAIN THE SAFETY YOU ASK HIM FOR. There are many websites, books and people that can help. Not enough, but they are out there.
OK, here’s a story that will serve as an analogy:
There was a bad storm coming, and severe flooding was expected. People were told to evacuate. One man stayed put. He declared “God will protect me.” As the storm began, a firetruck drove by slowly blaring the order to evacuate and offering help. The man told the rescuers, “I don’t need your help — God will protect me.”
The flood waters began rising. A rescue boat floated past the man’s home, and the rescuers offered to bring him to safety. He said, “I don’t need your help — God will protect me.”
He was driven to his rooftop as the flood waters rose higher and higher. A helicopter circled overhead and the rescuers announced, “We will lower a basket and bring you to safety!” The man said, “I don’t need your help — God will protect me!”
The man drowned. When he got to the pearly gates, he asked God why he did not help him, and God said this:
“I sent you a firetruck, a boat and a helicopter. What else did you want me to do?”
You may discount what I have to say for not sharing your beliefs, but I will tell you that I’ve spent countless hours working on this blog with the sole purpose of helping others. Many other people have also put in countless hours to help you — researchers, writers, bloggers, etc. What else do you want god to do?
First, let me say that if you have a belief that helps you, that’s all that counts. If believing psychopaths are the devil helps you, and that doesn’t disempower you, it’s just as good and valid as anyone else’s belief.
But when you say “The bible is very clear throughout that these people exist,” you’ve lost me because I don’t believe in the bible. You say it like that should end the dilemma because it says so in this book you wholeheartedly believe in. So if I, or others like me, don’t believe in the bible or god, we’re not likely to believe a psychopath is satan…yet you say only god will help us, so then we are powerless. My goal here is to empower people.
Knowledge is power. Knowledge and experience. You have what you need, what you’ve asked for. Is it enough? I hope so.
Best wishes to you
I’m sorry I did not make myself clear enough. I completely believe in everything you just said. Yes, I believe God has sent me to websites such as yours to help me have a better understanding of psychopaths, and I am very greatful to you and everyone who has shared their knowledge and experience. I am in no way like the man in the story example you wrote about. I would have taken the first way out. I believe God created doctors , and medications to help us…. I believe God provided a job for me, so that we can hire others and provide jobs for them… My point really was that we do not have to feel powerless by recognizing that psychopaths are evil.
I am not very good at writing. Or getting my thoughts out clearly. If you chose not to believe in God, then you are right, knowledge is your power, and knowledge is a great thing. It is a blessing, and though you believe it or not, it just may be God (the holy spirit) who has lead you to create this website because, yes, God does send people like you (a fireman, a boat, etc) to rescue His people. If He is using you. He may be calling you? You will probably not know for sure unless you learn his word. The Bible says: “the word is like a foreign language to those without the holy spirit. They simply can not understand it.”. All you have to do is ask God to send you the Holy Spirit, and you will begin to desire, and understand His word. That is between you and God. I am not judging you for what you chose to believe. I am grateful to you for your blog, and I have actually read and re-read it again and again. Thank You.
Ah, so we misunderstood each other. My sincere apologies. When I was a nurse, I used that story when I was dealing with a patient who refused medical care because they believed god would help them. I was trying to show them that maybe he was. It usually worked.
“My point really was that we do not have to feel powerless by recognizing that psychopaths are evil.” I agree — they are evil. But I just don’t believe they’re the devil. To me, the actual devil would be an incredibly powerful force I could not deal with at all.
You’re right, perhaps god has led me to create this website; anything is possible. I hope more than you know that the things I say here will actually help people, but I believe they will and so I say them. I pause each time before I press the “publish” key and hope my words will help and not hurt. But because my intention is good, I press it and hope for the best.
Thank you for coming back and making clear what you were trying to say. All the best to you.
Well, if we would assume that we can only find God by discovering the power if our innerselves, which I believe is the true meaning of religion, then these two theories come together, don’t they?
If that’s what you believe, then it could be true.
Wow. I love you and your work. You have helped me so much. Thank you.
Thank you. That is heartwarming, thanks for letting me know.
You can learn to protect yourself from becoming romantically involved with a psychopath but what about psychopaths in the workplace.
I can easily spot a psychopath in the workplace but avoiding them and avoiding being victimized by them is another matter. Once he/she decides I’m in a prime position to satisfy whatever selfish need or desire there is to gain from my victimization there is not much I can do about it, because he/she manipulates those around me, gaslighting and spreading gossip. And I can try to defend myself by saying well, that person is a psychopath, but people just look at me like I’m crazy because he/she is the nicest person in the world – to the ones who aren’t the victims.
I once went as far as to prove the person was sabotaging my work but she just claimed I had done it wrong and even convinced everyone that the parts she had sabotaged were the parts I had done and the rest of it was the parts she “fixed”. Not long after that she had everyone sabotaging my work in order to get rid of me since I was so “disagreeable”. Undaunted, I went about redoing everything every day so once they caught onto that they started re-sabotaging me until they managed to get me fired.
I’m sorry for what you went through at that job. That was awful. Psychopaths at the workplace isn’t my forte’ but there is much information on the web, and in the book “Snakes in Suits: When Psychopaths Go To Work.” The prevailing wisdom seems to be to just get out if it’s at all possible. If it’s not possible, the suggestion is to gather evidence, keep records, and take it to human resources or your supervisor. I wish you all the best in your present and future jobs, ARC. I hope your workplaces will be free of them and their destructive games.
I read this post with rapt attention. I have been in bondage to a psychopath. He is an LMT who abused his position, who began speaking of our “relationship” in godly terms. This man can access something that does feel alien. When he is in the love bomb stage, he is capable of ‘sending’ energy great distances. He speaks of Oneness, of ‘magic’, of the intimacy and the ‘specialness’ of our connection. He holds extraordinary presence, and I quickly became vulnerable, open, trusting beyond reason, I would be altered by it, more than what I could ever feel for a mere human.
It wasn’t the psychological power so much as an energy he wielded, Once I was under the ‘spell, the shock of disdain began, replete with the whiplash of cruelty, and an unblinking coldness… This shifted back to ‘love’ when he began to feel fear that I may report him. Then he would send the ‘love-energy at a distance, so strongly that I felt ensnared. It would awaken me in my sleep. This may sound unbelievable, but it is true.
I absolved him of his fears by writing a note declaring that it was consensual.
(manipulated by him through a barrage of promises..”there is love under the fear of you reporting me, but I cannot access it with this threat over my head” what a lie!)
After I set him free of his fear, he dusted off his hands, said “It is not in my best interest to ever see you again”, slammed the door behind him and never looked back. The energy bombs stopped… I was the past and he had moved on.
This slam left me reeling, spinning in confusion, pain and bewilderment. How could such ‘godly love’, such a huge earth-altering energetic pull, just slam to a halt?
After several months, I have decided I can still report him. He got wind of it and the fear has come back, so he is now back to manipulating me with his Oneness talk. Then, last night, the full force of that energetic pull awoke me again. It may sound impossible for readers to believe but I awoke with a gasp and the body arching off the bed. What is he capable of doing? Does he send ‘kundalini’ at a distance? Is it my fault because I am too open still? Alll I know is that he seems to have a power that is beyond most humans. It is sexual, and also includes huge love.
I tried to put boundaries around this and literally cannot access my inner power in the midst of this force field. I hear what you are saying about the rational mind, AND also acknowledge that there are powers that exist that we most of us only hear about and discard as impossible. I also know that one’s ability to tap into that power, has NOTHING nothing to do with worthiness, with goodness, nor with God. Whether he is a shaman, or a demon, or enlightened or just a person who has received an unwarranted gift… this man DOES pull in power for his personal use.
Are we victims? Is there a way to stave off an energetic assault (especially when the effect is pleasant)? I am trying to find my SELF in this.. my own power to say “no” to this energy… and so far.. the energy is so strong that it comes on anyway. Until I either report him or decide not to do so, I believe he will be pulling out all his tools to affect my physical, emotional, and spiritual being. So is HE supernatural? no, very human
But can he access ‘Superpowers”? Most definitely… sorry but this is true.
“Whether he is a shaman, or a demon, or enlightened, or just a person who has received an unwarranted gift… this man DOES pull in power for his personal use…But can he access ‘Superpowers”? Most definitely… sorry but this is true.”
Thank you for your articulate words and sharp insights. I experienced some of the same things, and believed for a while that he had access to some unknown power. But even so, I’m not sure they have “superpowers” — I think they have access to abilities that become available when emotional baggage isn’t in the way. I agree that there’s more that we don’t know than we do know, so anything’s possible, but your believing he has enormous power over you puts you at a disadvantage. Since I experienced it, I certainly respect and understand your opinion. It is an “energetic assault,” but I’m not convinced it’s supernatural. I wish you the best of luck in becoming free of him in your own way. Mine was also worried about me reporting him, but like a master chess player he was 50 moves ahead and made sure from the start that could never happen. Whatever you decide to do, I hope it works out for your good and everyone else’s.
I just want to tell you I have the same experience of waking up in the middle of the night like feeling him close several times. At first I’ld rationalize it but the day after he contacted me and it couldn’t be coincidence.
There are many things in this world that we can’t explain. This could be one of them.
You’re welcome. Glad to here of your upcoming trip to Alaska — I hope it will help you! I will look into the footage you mention. Thank you for your comment.
Admin, First let me thank you for the effort you have put in creating this website. Genuine victims need a site like this. I wish it had been around when I was at my low point. I’m the poor soul who has two children with a high scoring female psychopath. The never ending nightmare.
My opinion, FWIW, is that the only explanation for the baffling behaviour of psychopaths is the devil. I never believed in God or the devil but I do now. It’s all true. (IMO) Good and evil, light and dark. Psychopaths are just one branch of the devil. They are evil. They enjoy cruelty. It’s their motivation. The more you look at it from this angle the more it makes sense. It explains of the problem and is gives the answer to the problem. I’d thoroughly recommend investigating christianity. It works.
A mortal person alone has no chance against a psychopath. They are using supernatural power in other words. I don’t want to get all religious on you but this one quote from the Bible might make get your interest. Talking about this very subject Paul says
“For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places”
Once you understand what’s occurring and have learned what to do about it you will have solved the biggest problem of your life. For the 95% of you who don’t have children ties……..just break all contact…..at any cost.
Mike, thanks for your comment. But perhaps their behavior is devilish…they act in evil ways…and they SEEM like the devil, rather than actually BEING those things? That’s the point I’m trying to make in my post. I was once at the place where I believed it, too, but with time and healing, I see it in a different way. Now, he just seems like a manipulative dumbass who needs to be dropkicked, instead of a Powerful Being From the Netherworld. Also, I’ve never heard a psychopath claim to be the devil. There aren’t too many out there who will come forward and speak, but those who do aren’t claiming to be satan. If they did, that would make them delusional, and then the diagnosis of psychopath would no longer apply.
Best wishes to you and your children. I agree that those of you who have children are in the worst possible situation, and I wish you all the best.
Admin: ” believed for a while that he had access to some unknown power. But even so, I’m not sure they have “superpowers” — I think they have access to abilities that become available when emotional baggage isn’t in the way”
Yes, yes. Thank you for making this distinction. I, too, am inkling that the ‘superpowers’ are available to each of us, perhaps in varying degrees, when our emotional baggage is out of the way. IF there is is gift in this (big “if), then it is that this psychopathic predator is a way-shower. If HE can access this formidable power, then is it not also available for each of us when we get out of our own way? It, perhaps, is even our birthright as humans. We can use it for good or ill, however, yes?
Yes, I think so…although I was referring to “emotional baggage” as our conscience and our ability to feel love and experience remorse. Sorry I didn’t make that clear. But of course there are other types of things that are actually emotional baggage, in the sense of the things we could do without such as worrying excessively about what others think of us or trying to please other people rather than fulfilling our own desires, and if we could be free of self-imposed unnecessary restrictions we would be capable of much more. Luckily we can’t do away with our conscience (nor would most of us want to), which is the gatekeeper that keeps us in check so we will use any new-found freedom for good and not ill. Psychopaths have no internal constraints so everything is an option for them to consider, including of course things that would never even cross our minds. They have no filter (the conscience) to block those ideas that bubble up into their conscious mind from the depths of the reptilian brain. Add to that that there’s nothing there to stop them from acting on those ideas — such as love, empathy or compassion — and therein lies the crux of psychopathy. That’s the way it seems to me, anyway.
BTW, a definition of evil:
“Most people are good and occasionally do something they know is bad.
Some people are bad and struggle every day to keep it under control.
Others are corrupt to the core and don’t give a damn, as long as they don’t get caught.
But evil is a completely different creature.
Evil is bad that believes it is good”
-Karen Marie Moning
This man I have described does believe he is ‘good’, or pretends to, which causes the body to shudder. Thanks for allowing these posts. It is HEALING! Blessings on you and your work for us all
Psychopaths definitely do think of themselves as superior and see nothing wrong with themselves.
No, psychopaths never claim to be devils – they claim to be ANGELS. Mine did at least. Devils are just fallen angels after all. He also claimed to have access to ‘The Source’. I felt the same energetic shifts and some very powerful conscious experiences such as images in the sky that he pointed out to me,. He claimed to use the sea to communicate with me when I fled thousands of miles away from him. It worked. Another female who was new supply to him said he was a shaman. I just ran into another psychopath on a date who definitely has other-worldly qualities. He managed to mirror my deepest thoughts in one date. I’m doing all the meditation, self-empowering things I can hoping he does NOT choose me as supply. One thing I noticed about them is how they shift their appearance. Both changed into different people as I observed them talking. The latest date was a youthful very masculine type who morphed into a wistful woman, then a small chastised child, a scary clown then finally a very old man. I was transfixed by this parade of personalities that played upon his face. A lot like my old psycho who went from handsome smiling GQ type looks to a round eyed four year old, a bear-clown, a human juke-box and finally an insect-like creature with a needle-nose and small empty black eyes. They are diaphanous and ethereal. No solidness. I want SO much to render these creatures powerless and plain old human. But I don’t think they are. My old psycho deliberately contracted a deadly sexual disease because, in his words, he wanted to become more human. THEY SENSE their lack of humanity. THEY KNOW. And they suffer for it in their way. I think you hit it on the nail that the lack of connectedness in the amygdala clears them to access powers with no hindrance. Powers we could all access if we had this lack of connectedness.
For a time I believed mine was Lucifer, the Light Bringer. Like yours, he also pointed out images in the sky. One time he pointed at one and said, “Look, it’s the devil! Do you think you should jump overboard?” and I laughed and said, “maybe you should!” I thought they were just highly unusual (and unlikely) cloud formations. He also shifted into different personifications right before my eyes, including the joker from batman and a corpse. He even wore a halo at times. Most definitely ethereal. I explained it to my therapist as his “lacking any substance,” but she thought I meant figuratively when I meant *literally.* He told me over and over that he was a vampire, and he’d put his mouth over mine and suck all my breath out like he wanted something from me that he needed desperately. He absolutely was aware of his own lack of humanity, but I don’t think he understood it, as in realizing he was a psychopath. He was as puzzled as he was puzzling. I can’t explain a lot of these things. Let’s leave it at that.
I am reading a very good and insightful book that describes this phenomenon very well. “The Sociopath next Door” describes to the “nth” degree what we are all dealing with. Psycho/Sociopaths are satisfied with themselves as they are of conscience or guilt. They see nothing wrong with their behaviour. To treat them is impossible because they will never admit a problem and can feign a pseudo emotion if and when required to fit in. Diagnosis and determination of the condition is extremely difficult.They see absolutely nothing wrong with their behaviour, 4% of people have this condition. More than Schizophrenia, Colon Cancer, and Bi-polar. They are out there, most often in positions of power which require no feeling regarding outcomes such as defending a serial killer in court with money as the reward and no concern for the victims.
That is a good book! It’s so true that they see nothing wrong with themselves, and even believe they’re superior no matter what havoc they’re wreaking upon an individual or society. No concern for their victims, none at all. If they had any, they wouldn’t do the things they do.
Edited to add: Admittedly I don’t know too much about ‘sociopaths,’ but I think the author of this book lumped sociopaths and psychopaths together. What I write in this blog is strictly about psychopaths, although the line does blur in some areas. In the sidebar there’s a section titled “psychopaths vs sociopaths” if anyone wants to know more. Similar yet very different in some important ways.
I was given your book In May. It saved my life. Thank you for all that you do. I dumped him when I read your book. He lead me on for the last 2 years of our relationship saying he could not leave mom. He lives with her. She has polio & the dementia. But he could leave her & 2 time me by taking another woman to the beach this may 2014 & on mother’s day weekend. I confronted him, he did not deny it. Said he finally got his brother to sit with mom. I dumped him on May 16th 2014.
My book saved your life? That is amazing and wonderful and I’m so glad to hear it! Thank you for letting me know!!! You were able to walk away when you realized the truth. Your strength and drive for self-preservation will help you in many areas of life. Best wishes to you!
Please everyone read Carl Sagan’s Demon Haunted World. I too was the victim of a sociopath, a clever, seductive, con man…..yes…but still just a human man. Devil, shaman, supernatural powers…ridiculous. I am amazed that in the year 2014 people still believe in such nonsense.
There is still so much we don’t know about the human brain, but we know a lot more than we used to., and we will know even more in the future. We may not have all the answers today, but to give it up to “the devil did it” keeps us in the middle ages when we thought mentally ill people were “possessed” and we burned “witches” at the stake. Before we knew what germs were we also thought physical illness was of the devil. If you already go thru life believing in the supernatural, then of course it is very easy, tempting and seductive to offer the magical, paranormal as an explanation instead of a real or natural cause at work.
Thanks for your comment. I agree that to believe “the devil did it” is an easy way out that makes it something we have no power to deal with. What they do may seem devilish and magical, but all the answers lie in the abilities of the human brain. I believe this even after all the seemingly ‘supernatural’ events that occurred with the psychopath I knew. It would be easy to chalk it up to the paranormal, but to me that doesn’t exist. What does exist are powers of the human brain that we aren’t knowledgeable about yet. I know they’re there because I witnessed and experienced them, even if I don’t understand them and can’t explain how they happened. I’ve never heard of Carl Sagan’s Demon Haunted World; I’ll look into it.
I do believe that as long as someone is ignorant and naive about these types they are powerless and I also believe that is the ONLY thing that makes someone a good target/ victim. I don’t think it has anything to do with boundaries, not that they are a bad thing to have of course, but a determined and skilled manipulator can blast through someones boundaries like a cannon or chip away at them like a sculptor. But ONLY if you don’t know they exist. I don’t know if I would go so far as to say that a potential victim is “powerless” but I would say that ANYone who does not know the manipulation dynamics they use is a potential target.
Sure, some people get targeted because they are vulnerable and have bad boundaries, unresolved issues, have blonde hair, walk funny, are lonely, wear a size 7 shoe or whatever. In my case, I was the one who picked HIM up initially and that was the only “choice” I made because in retrospect I see that the manipulation started the first night …………the rest was a blur.
I agree, being ignorant that these types of people exist is number one on the list of what makes a good target. We all started that way. But if that’s so, now that you do know they exist and that risk factor is removed, what is it that will prevent it from happening again? If that’s the biggest problem, does that mean that just being aware of it will keep you safe? I’m sure it plays a part, but I don’t think it’s everything. You say that’s the biggest risk, but you also say if a psychopath likes blonde hair or size 7 feet, you’re a goner. So then what good does knowing about them do?
Likewise, saying that a determined manipulator “will blast through someone’s boundaries like a cannon” is saying that we are all powerless and at the mercy of these predators. Having boundaries means knowing what you want from a relationship and what you won’t tolerate when you’re involved in one, and sticking to that. If someone *actually* does that, it will go a long way.
If a psychopath prefers blondes, he will pick a blonde with loose boundaries because s/he is an easier target. You say you picked him, which seems to infer that he didn’t target you for any reason. I sense anger in your words at the idea that you might need to do anything to make yourself less vulnerable, which to you seems to imply that you or another victim was at fault. That is not the case, and not at ALL what I’m saying here. I wonder if you’ve read and understood this post entirely along with the posts on boundaries, as opposed to having a knee-jerk reaction? If you read Hare, Babiak, Brown, etc., they all say the same thing — learn what makes you vulnerable and take care of it. None of them is victim blaming. Neither am I.
“You say that’s the biggest risk, but you also say if a psychopath likes blonde hair or size 7 feet, you’re a goner. So then what good does knowing about them do?”
That’s not what I’m saying.
Anything can make you a —target— is what I’m saying…..endless things….blonde, size 7 shoes, etc…. even having boundaries could set the bar high for them to climb right over…….what ever suits their pathetic, selfish fancy……. But not knowing about THEM is what makes you a —victim—.
I’ve shit canned men a plenty and actually did kick him to the curb 3 weeks into it which only set the stage for the rest of the debacle, that’s when the volume got turned up, or should I say down? That’s when it(he) really went underground.
There are endless things that can make a person vulnerable to endless things and a manipulator could target any of them but ONLY if the target is unaware of their existence and how they operate. Even with a Sociopath as a brother, I was unaware. Why? Because my experiences with my brother had nothing to do with romance and he is not a romantic predator, for lack of a better term.
What will keep this from happening again to me? It’s already happened and I have invested myself thoroughly in learning what happened so that it hopefully does not happen again. I feel pretty confident that it won’t in a romantic situation but in other situations? situations that I might be as ignorant as I was going into this, say legal or financial? I don’t know. Predators have a way of saying what they need to say to gain your confidence and trust and there is a lot of murky water when it comes to dealing with people who are supposedly knowledgable in an area that you are not. Madoff is a good example of that.
I’m not implying that I was at fault, at least not “fault” in the normal sense. Fault out of ignorance yes. so………..I’m no longer ignorant or naive. I’ve loaded my brain with enough information and knowledge to, god willing, protect myself in the future.
“I’ve loaded my brain with enough information and knowledge to, god willing, protect myself in the future.” That’s all any of us can do, and I hope it will keep you safe in the future. Best wishes, L.! xx
” If you read Hare, Babiak, Brown, etc., they all say the same thing — learn what makes you vulnerable and take care of it. ”
And the above mentioned are 9 out of 10 times speaking to people who have already been targeted and victimized. I’m sorry if my comments were a little unclear or poorly worded and thank you so much for your reply, understanding and the words of wisdom you provide here. You do the survivors a great service here Admin! :)
I agree, they’re speaking to people who have already been victims. I’m afraid there’s not much hope for the first-timers, as we all know so well. Thank you, L., for your kind words.
rather than describing ‘paths as the devil,perhaps better to link them to the mark of cain. could there be something in that story?
I wasn’t familiar with the story of the “mark of cain” and just looked it up. Apparently this mark turned cain into a restless, searching wanderer who was forever excluded from the family unit (relationships). That’s a good analogy, although I hate to relate it into anything of “biblical” proportions because of the power that gives it. Even so, there is a reason we’re drawn there when thinking of psychopaths…a good reason…
Hey, such a massive blog.
These abusers, psychopaths, narcissists, are tailor made for each individual victim, be it male or female. I speak as a victim for 20 years, I can now ‘see’ them and notice how my children and especially my sons are negotiating their way around the psychopaths they encounter. I think my daughters may sense them.
But back to the blog, when I was ‘listening’ to my psychopath, I had to, I had to predict all, because of the consequences if I didn’t. And now we are nearly a year away from him, just wonderful, exhausting, but healing and I can now ‘think’.
I now know, thanks to you what ‘he is’ and I am starting to remember what ‘he said’ and you are right, it is all to do with him, unless he was mirroring me. Remember what he said, in this way you will unravel him. What he says and what he does, there is an ocean of difference, highlight it. Mine used say all I cared about was money, ( all he cares about ) everything I did was. ‘wrong’ sitting, standing, dancing, what I said, what I did. And this is how I show him up in court, because this is the only way I can get him to do anything. He cannot come up with anything creative, they only destroy. No solutions. They have NO intellect, just that of a Neanderthal or a 2 year old. He will measure his worth in whatever he believes in, his ‘truth’ is in his head no matter the facts, or the truths of others.
I saw many of those personas, the sick, Jokers/ jack Nicholson smile/grimace, the hurt little boy. Yuk, I thought of him as a Greek monster, a little boy/evil demon in human form. These were the words to describe what I had experienced, as I was with him and as I was trying to get out, trying to make sense of the nonsensical. ( ref admin :) Now I am away, and dealing with the aftermath, learning about him, validating me, getting him to court and raising the children.
I can understand better, the only thing that goes on in his head is the ways to fulfill his needs, no intellect, just a black hole, we the survivors are the ones with the brain functioning as part of that infinite universal intelligence. We are the creators, we are the ones with all those positive characteristics of kindness, tolerance, generosity, and most importantly love. It is what makes us tick, and we share with all, ( am learning about boundarys) others return, the psychopath takes it all, and only gives an illusion of returning, he takes it solely for the purpose of destroying. When he hurts, humiliates, degrades, hinders it makes him ‘feel’, the sadder, angrier, more distraught, we are the the better he ‘feels’.He needs our humanness, and it is that, I think that is the ‘supernatural’ power, our humanness and that is in our hands, he only stole it from us without us knowing. We can interconnect that love, compassion, kindness, with our fellow humans and share our experiences, this website is amazing, you are doing massive work, and I know I am in a better position to pass on the knowledge and to help others. We do know how to disable and destroy them, the same way way he disarmed, disabled and destroyed ( nearly) me, he used my kindness, tolerance, understanding, generosity, I thought that these were ‘bad’ traits, left me ill equipped in his reality and that’s what nearly destroyed me, seeing things through his eyes, it’s a very dark place. And those traits, those characteristics are what I had to dig deep to connect back into and these are helping me on my journey, back to my fellow humans. I believe we all have a very positive energy/ power within us, it is ours to do with as we please, to use or not, for good or evil. Psychopaths don’t have it, they take it from us. All good wishes xx
What a great description of how it all works when we live in “their reality.” Everything is distorted, like in the hall of mirrors at the fun house. So happy you have emerged from that dark, twisted place and have reconnected with those wonderful traits within you. Sometimes people tell me that the good things about them are gone, and I always tell them that they are absolutely still there, but they have to dig deep to uncover them.
You are yet another person who experienced the (Heath Ledger) Joker’s grimace/smile and Jack Nicholson (I will assume you mean his character from The Shining…the “here’s johnny” scene in particular?), among others. Very interesting! I would love to explore this topic more. We don’t often (or ever?) hear these things in the dry, academic writings about psychopathy, because they’ve never seen it. It’s the victims writings that are truly interesting and that go beyond vagueness and generalities into the nitty-gritty, the bizarre details, the “how it all really works” kind of stuff. But of course we don’t have PhD amended to our names, so we’re ignored or dismissed. Too bad. The writings of psychopaths themselves (what little I can find) is also full of the dark but fascinating details of how they operate; it’s enlightening, but can be a hard and unnerving read.
Thanks for continuing to read and comment on this “massive” blog, lol. I hadn’t thought of it that way. The energy of readers is what gives me the motivation to keep going. It would not exist if it weren’t for that. I’ve thought of giving it up and even said goodbye once, but that never seems to work for too long.
All good wishes to you, too xx
i agree with your statement that psycopaths do not target everybody but they can read people well and know who they can get away with manipulating. I will say that I look on my experience being married to one for many years, as a gift. I would not have realized my own personality. I now look at every encounter that I come up against as a new opportunity to turn a negative (trait that doesn’t serve me well) in to an opportunity to look at how I appear to others and how I can handle these situations differently. I truly wouldn’t have discovered my own power or stepped out of my boundaries with out coming up against the psychopath. I still come up against them and even had a relationship with another one, as I said they still can recognize the victum in me, but i have handled myself differently and walked away from encounters without being stripped and robbed of myself.
“I truly wouldn’t have discovered my own power…with out coming up against the psychopath.” Same for me. I got a tremendous amount out of it, too, but of course that’s because of the work we did afterward (and continue to do). Not quite what they intended! When you can finally take this batch of rotten lemons and make lemonade, you’ve accomplished what’s known as post-traumatic growth. There’s a blog post here on that subject. At first we go through post-traumatic stress, but we don’t have to get stuck there forever, as you’ve discovered. And I’m encouraged that you were able to recognize and then walk away from another psychopath. That’s a big part of what this is all about, preventing another victimization!
Thank you for your comment!
Wow, when you said ‘he’d put his mouth over mine and suck all my breath out like he wanted something from me that he needed desperately’ that really rang a bell!! Mine did the same type of kissing – he would cover my whole mouth and suck my breath out – it was his preferred type of kiss. No one else ever did that to me. He would also put his hands over my eyes as he did so – his fingers covering each eye giving me a strange feeling during the kiss. Something like death as my eyes were covered. Weird..
Very strange indeed. Although at the time, I thought it was weird but romantic, like he just wanted every bit of me. Yeah, every bit including my life-force! Luckily all he got was a bunch of carbon dioxide :-)
In your article…Stages of Psychopathic Bond I notice that you talk about the idealization stage at the beginning of the relationship. However, I was married to someone for 21 years who always acted like he idealized me with doting. However, the whole time he was serial cheating behind my back and never felt guilty about it. It’s like he was two different people. He told me he was able to compartmentalize his behavior. He never called me names or anything (unless I calle him one first). I’m not sure what he called me behind my back, but who knows. Of courses he eventually discarded me by leaving me for another woman. He also had an affair 15 years ago and we split up at that time, but got back together about 9 months later. I have severely been affected by this and I feel damaged. Any advice?
Hi Maria. Sorry to hear what you’re going through — and I’m not surprised that you’re deeply affected by it. As far as the idealization phase goes, it never ends completely (until the discard happens); it becomes intermittent, which is what keeps the victim hooked. These people definitely have two sides and it is very hard to reconcile. The duplicitous behavior is what makes it so much harder to accept, and chances are you will never be able to reconcile the two very different people you were dealing with. *What it boils down to is not figuring it out, but accepting that you will most likely never figure it out, and being able to live with that.*
Be careful saying/believing that you’re damaged. Look at it as a temporary state that you can and will recover from. It’s amazing how resilient we truly are and how much we can overcome. This person damaged you by the way he treated you, but instead of being beaten down by it, feel your anger and use the energy from that anger to become determined to heal! Why should such a person go on ruining your life and taking happiness away from you? He’s done more than enough. Don’t let him take any more from you.
Here’s part of a comment posted right on this page yesterday:
“I speak as a victim for 20 years…And now we are nearly a year away from him, just wonderful, exhausting, but healing and I can now ‘think’..He disarmed, disabled and destroyed (nearly) me, he used my kindness, tolerance, understanding, generosity. I thought that these were ‘bad’ traits, left me ill equipped in his reality and that’s what nearly destroyed me, seeing things through his eyes, it’s a very dark place. And those traits, those characteristics are what I had to dig deep to connect back into and these are helping me on my journey, back to my fellow humans.”
Sometimes we do have to “dig deep” to find ourselves again, especially after 20 years. It takes a lot of effort but it’s well worth it to uncover those things you thought were destroyed but are really still there. If you don’t feel you’re progressing in your recovery, please find a good therapist you can talk to, OK? Best wishes, Maria. Let me know how you do. Please know that you’re not alone.
I’ve been with the same man for half my life. I just learned he is NOTwho I had believed he was. All the warning sings were there but I loved him so much.After being together for 6mts I caught him in a van where I worked. He was in the middle of the seats on his knees begging my roomate to show hlm her titties.She hated him cause she saw right thut him.She told me he kept asking her so we set him up.Caught red handed.I always knew there was something about him He was different.My friend said he was a robot.He was never emotional over anyyhing.Did not no what remorse meant. I had to call my 12yr old son in the living room so he could tell his dad how to spell it and what it meant.In the beginning I thought he was my soul mate Talk about love and affection!! He was the BEST.Then one day….every thing I had believed in for half my life was a commplete lie! EVERYTHINg!!! LIE, LIR, LIE!!!
I’ve been reading through this site for the past 2 hours and what I have read worries me. I’ve been with my boyfriend for 6 months and I find myself, on a daily basis, making excuses for his behavior. Every time I finally talk myself into breaking it off, he does or says something so sweet that I question why I wanted to break up in the first place. I’ve realized in the past week or so, that I know very little about him while he knows everything about me. He’s always on the go, always has something to do, he gets bored so easily, and he completely ignores my boundaries (to the point where a couple of the times we’ve had sex, it would be classified as rape if I were to pursue any charges). When I’m around him, everything is perfect… And then I leave and my world comes unglued. When I don’t feel good or I’m depressed, he just tells me to not be so whiny, whereas he used to listen to me and try to make me feel better. He’s the only person I’ve ever been head-over-heels for so I don’t really have anything to compare it to. I don’t know if he’s a psychopath, and I don’t want him to be, he’s my first love and I’d do anything for him to be the same person he was in the beginning. I’ve always had trust issues because of things certain people have put me through, but I felt like I could trust him right away.
-My family has always been very secretive (what happens at home, stays at home) so they’ve all told me to keep my mouth shut and deal with it on my own. But the thing is, I don’t know how.
“I don’t know if he’s a psychopath”
Either do I. But I do know that you need to end the relationship TODAY. You don’t need to figure out his ‘diagnosis’ before you act, but if that’s what’s stopping you, this one works: Asshole.
thank you so much for your excellent blog which i just discovered and am reading with all intentions of getting over my psycho ex .
our relationship was only online and we live in different countries. i have finally distanced myself very much from him after 2 years (using something similar to the grey rock method, without even knowing about it !! i just read about it !) i just kept feeling that the more i tried to indirectly fight him and make him jealous with my methods , the more interested he was in making me angry and jealous with his methods ; so it occurred to me to either disappear or seem uninteresting . he is kind of ‘lost ‘ and confused now , but still keeps on with his methods on his FB page, like triangulation, intermittent reinforcement, etc etc(even though i have DELETED my FB account ),,,, (and as you say most people think he is just wonderful )!! also other people around me don’t understand how difficult it is to forget him and what a dangerous situation i have been in , psychologically, which is so hard for me too , doing all this by myself .the psychiatrists in my country don’t spend too much time on patients, so i can’t really rely on them. so thanks for this opportunity to write to people who have had similar experiences .
but i have one question .you know that we women are vain, and i know he is still really hooked on me , whether to manipulate me or whatever. the point is i want to keep him hooked and angry and jealous . i want revenge and i am vain , i won’t lie. so if after a while i create another FB account just saying i’m engaged and live in a more modern country than the one i am in now, will this continue to make him jealous and hooked ? you see i don’t want him and others to think i ran away and hid because i was scared and soooo heart-broken . i do not intend to contact him at all ,i just want to put that info there on my new FB page to make him suffer and see that i have a new life . do you think it will work ,or will he step up his evil methods of making me jealous again?
thanks so much .
You’re welcome, and thank you so much for your kind words. It’s good to hear you used the gray rock method naturally — it shows your instincts are intact. It’s also good to hear you’ve removed yourself from Facebook. It’s too bad you had to do that, but it’s another very positive step you’ve taken on your own behalf.
I know it’s hard to do it by yourself, but you are doing it and proving your strength and resilience! Hooray for you.
Now there’s just that pesky little need to keep him hooked/angry/jealous that you must overcome. When you keep him hooked, you also keep yourself hooked.
I’ll be willing to bet, though, that by the time you could put up a new FB page claiming a new life, you won’t feel the need to anymore. You do not have to prove anything to him or to anybody else. If you do put up the FB page it will not be a positive thing for you, and it could invite him back into your life, at least in some way. Just take care of yourself and focus on this new life you want to have, and it will happen for real. Warm wishes to you.
thank you so much for your reply ! you don’t know how much this means to me !
you are completely right; i have this pesky urge for revenge that is very hard to set aside .
would you happen to know of any website where a professional could help me further on this issue , online ?
thank you again.
You’re welcome! I might just have some idea of how much it means to you, because I know what it’s like to feel alone with the whole thing.
I’m sorry, but I don’t know of a website like the one you’re seeking. If anyone reading this has any suggestions, please leave a comment.
Hopefully, as you heal you’ll find that your desire for revenge fades away. And as the old saying goes, “Living well is the best revenge.” It is, even if he doesn’t know about it.
another question :
is it helpful for me to write to women who are no longer friends with him because he unfriended them ,or they noticed a little something (not real gfs, just women whom he adds on FB ,without him or them really knowing each other from before ) , and talk about this , if they have a positive/neutral attitude toward me ?
Honestly, I don’t think it would be helpful at all. It will just keep you stuck and keep you hooked. Just try to keep moving forward.
i’m sorry , but i have another question too.
i don’t remember if it was in your blog or somewhere else yesterday ,where someone had asked the admin :do these psychos feel empty and unfulfilled at the end of the day? and the admin had answered no , because their ‘task’ is to do all these evil things to people , therefore they feel alright .
but i have noticed depression and feeling unfulfilled by this guy too many times; so does he fake it or does he really get unfulfilled and depressed ?
From what I understand, they do not feel empty and unfulfilled at the end of the day. They are simply not capable of it. As far as your ex goes, it could simply have been a pity play. But whatever it is, K.E., if this guy is bad for you, that’s what matters most. A lot of us have gotten stuck in the quicksand of “is he or isn’t he a psychopath?” but the basic question should be this: “Is he damaging to me, to my life, to my well-being, to my peace of mind?” If the answer is “yes,” then it needs to end. Granted, victims of psychopaths suffer from the extreme manipulation they’ve been subjected to and that needs to be addressed. But aside from that, we need to end any involvement with a person who is toxic to us, and not wait for a definitive diagnosis. :-)
i totally understand and agree with what you are saying . and thank you . it’s just that pesky thing ,we talked about earlier …. i mean i am totally aware that thinking about him like this is not to my benefit, and i have put several large papers with all this that you’re saying and much much more , written in red and other colors ,right beside my computer, since months ago and keep adding things to them , and reading them ! but it is really a “TRANCE” for me , as you say elsewhere on your blog . i am sure of the diagnosis ;) . i just want him to suffer . (anyway ,the main reason why i am “stuck” is that i am at home most of the time , and there are no interesting people to meet or activities where i live , and i have been very lonely in the past 3 years) .
thanks again :)
I know about the trance…but one day that trance, or the ‘spell’ you’re under, will be broken. It happens by becoming able to think clearly by ending all contact with him (that includes talking to people somehow related with him online). This gives you the mental space you need to see things in a more objective light. I realize you’re probably still in the stage where your thoughts are on him much of the time, but don’t let yourself act on them. In time, these intrusive thoughts will become less frequent and less emotionally evocative.
Also, importantly, if this man is a psychopath, you CANNOT make him suffer. He’s simply not capable of it. The most you can do is make him angry and want to retaliate, or give him the chance he needs to wedge his foot back in the door.
Even if you live somewhere you consider boring, find positive ways to keep yourself engaged. Read books, even those that have nothing to do with psychopaths. Start a blog. Begin an exercise routine. Cook healthy food. Take a free class or two online — many top universities offer free classes online in all kinds of subjects. You can learn to write fiction, study psychology or math, learn a new language, etc.: http://www.open.edu/openlearn/about-openlearn/try?LKCAMPAIGN=Google_grant_GenericOU&MEDIA=oltry&gclid=CjwKEAjwj4ugBRD1x4ST9YHplzMSJACTDms85kzg6JwjP6fxHVPlasNYBhq0FdU1pjf4w-21UH_kVxoC0Wjw_wcB
Take good care of yourself and continue to stay strong, K.E. :-)
thanks for your responses ; you are right .
thank you for writing back about all the things i mentioned. yes ,i am still in the phase where i think of him too much , and still have different feelings toward him at different times of the day . the good think is the ‘head’ is working, even if the ’emotions’ are there .
and i keep reminding myself of NO CONTACT.
i just want to say that: ( and this is NOT any excuse to defend , or contact him whatsoever ) i think there are different levels of psychopathy and they can be mixed with other disorders sometimes, and i genuinely see that he is feeling awful from the pics he posts of himself all the time on FB, (narcissist) .and i also found this video about an hour ago .
i know i wrote too much and sorry to take up your time , but i really appreciate everything .
(you can post the video if you like , or not if you don’t want to . it’s in the middle of the page . (( abovetopsecret.com/forum/thread956274/pg1 )) it really is an interesting video anyhow .)
as i said i do want him to suffer mostly , but i also want to understand . i think i can get better closure like this, than just simply ignoring everything about him.
however i repeat, these are not excuses for defending or contacting him , after all the wrong he has done to me .i must ,as you also say, get over him ,and think of what is good for me . but i just want to know the EXACT diagnosis ;) (btw i am a GP (physician) myself , but i don’t practice cause i never even liked the field of medicine !! another story …)
thank you also for the link :) .yes i’m trying to do something about this other situation as well …
take care too ,and thank you very much . :)
I understand. There’s no way I can know everything about someone or about the relationship, or what disorders they might have; I can only go by what readers tell me. All I’m saying is that what’s most important is how he affects you, independent from whatever his diagnosis (or diagnoses) might be. I agree, there can definitely be more than one. I fully realize it takes time to recover from a pathological relationship. The intrusive thoughts, the conflicting thoughts, all of it takes time. Gaining an understanding of someone’s character is an important part of the healing process, which you are doing. Also, the thoughts you have about exacting revenge are completely normal and understandable.
I clearly see your logical mind is engaged along with your emotions, and that you care about your own well-being.
I am also a health professional who left the field. But as you said, that’s another story…
I will take a look at the video.
Doctor, take good care of yourself :-) Nurse Admin xx
I just watched a bit of the video, but from what I saw, Vaknin was speaking about narcissists, not psychopaths. Narcissists can get depressed when they don’t get the attention and admiration they need so badly. They do have emotions, unlike psychopaths.
It is said that all psychopaths are narcissists, but this isn’t really accurate, because their narcissism is *not* the same as the narcissism of the narcissist.
What I mean to say is that although their attention-seeking behaviors can look the same on the surface, the reason for it is entirely different in each of them.
The best explanation I have found regarding this concept came from a psychopath. He said narcissists have a very strong emotional need for attention, acceptance and admiration, and that their self esteem depends on whether or not they receive these things. These needs make narcissists very vulnerable to rejection and humiliation.
But he said psychopaths do not need attention and they certainly do not need acceptance, at least not just for the sake getting it, but only as a means to an end. He said the psychopath’s emotional well being is unaffected by a lack of attention, acceptance, or admiration. Those things are simply techniques they use to get what they want without having to resort to coercion such as threats, blackmail, or physical violence. For the psychopath, getting attention is a type of control, a potential opener for gaining power, which is the only reason they seek it. But narcissists seek attention and acceptance for its own sake, and are miserable (sad, depressed) if they don’t get it.
I believe that sums it up pretty well. If your ex was genuinely “feeling awful,” he couldn’t be too high up on the psychopathic spectrum, because those who are simply can’t experience sadness. My ex psychopath told me several times that he never felt sad or depressed, and he couldn’t even imagine it or understand it at all. He was smug about it.
Getting attention and being admired are simply ways for psychopaths to attract victims. If a pity play gets them the attention they seek, it’s fine as long as it works. This is a possibility when considering your ex’s behavior.
oh, the similarity of our studies, and leaving our careers is interesting !
i understand and agree with what you have written . so , yes, from what i see in him ,and with your explanations, i think he is not very high on the psychopathic spectrum ! but surely enough to really hurt many many people , with many of the methods of psychopaths !!
but he certainly DIES for attention too ,and does get upset when he doesn’t get it …i know he has a big lack of self esteem which he always tries to cover up in harsh or sneaky ways …(it seems that he has both kinds of narcissism (??) )… but then bounces back to being an a**hole quite soon .
so it’s something there in between …
anyway, i suppose that knowing this much is good enough for me. so i’ll just leave it there ! ;)
thank you again . very much .
you take care too, Nurse Admin :) xo
Hmm, something in between…maybe you can call him a Narcopath, or a Psychonarc. Sounds like the worse of both worlds, rolled into one. xo
i agree ! xo
Perhaps you should not mention the Devil or God in these posts. This is a website for ‘modern day’ thinkers who are interested in knowledge of a very serious personality disorder. It is fine for you to believe in God/Satan, but some of us don’t. OR our particular idea of God is very different than yours.
You remind me of a ‘Born Again Christian’ who quoted the Bible to people at work: I never pointed out to her that it was actually illegal to do this. She expected everyone to see things the way she did…and yet she was hypocritical to an incredible degree.
Can we agree to leave Religion out of these discussions? You actually assume that ALL of us believe like you do. And this can be quite offensive.
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