The name Skylar is Dutch and means “guarded scholar” or “protection through knowledge”.

I blog under this name because I encountered a psychopath and I lived with him for over 2 decades. It was knowledge that saved my life and anonymity which keeps me guarded.

In the last con the psychopath was pulling on me, my house and cars had been willed to him, a couple of life insurance policies were purchased on my life, and the bank accounts had been emptied to cover his “emergencies”. The last goal was to take my business and put it in his name.  To accomplish this, he concocted some dramatic stories, provided evidence in the form of props and he had accomplices playing various roles.  This lasted for several months as I watched, perplexed at his antics. He came home whispering conspiratorially about finding GPS tracking devices under his truck.   I knew he was making things up but I didn’t understand why.  I didn’t know he was a psychopath.

So I assured him that these were part of a game being played by my brother-in-law, the cop who had just been promoted to Homeland Security.  B-I-L has a fascination with GPS tracking devices.  He even said he was starting a business selling the devices to law enforcement all over the country.  He had shown me one of his products.  It was marked with an “8”, B-I-L’s “lucky number”.  The GPS tracking device my ex-spath showed me, also had an “8”.  Coincidence much?   It wasn’t long before Black SUV’s were following me around.  The spath was buddies with the local cops and with my B-I-L’s Homeland goons .  He had impressed them with his confident psychopathic presence, groomed them with rides in his stolen helicopter, and convinced them that they should hate me for being a woman that needed to be taken down a peg.

Eventually, he needed more props and he provided them in the form of secret, grand jury approved warrants (falsified), a business card from a homeland security agent and a voice mail.  I didn’t believe it .  After 25 years I’ve seen him falsify documents for fun, many times.  He calls it “doing a gravel” because he would never use the word “con”

Psychopath made a mistake when I was allowed to take pictures of the tracking device on the truck.  According to the phony warrant, the “Grand Jury” had not approved a truck tracking device, only a helicopter tracking device.  The dates approved for the tracking on the warrant were not the same dates the device was on the truck.  I had dated photos to prove it.

At one point during this period, he called his elderly, infirm mother on the phone. He cussed her out using the most vulgar language imaginable and told her never to call him again.  This was completely out of character and unexpected.  It made no sense.

He began threatening me and I feared for my life.  One night I packed up and abandoned him while he was out, but I still didn’t understand what was happening.  He continued to call my cell phone and to stalk me.

Fortunately, a stranger in a sushi bar began a conversation with me.  I was so distraught and confused that I spilled the entire story to him.  His reply was, “Oh, that’s a malignant narcissist.”  He explained about psychopaths and advised me to “Be boring. Don’t give him any drama.  They feed on drama.”

The man I thought had loved me for 25 years, wanted me dead and I realized that he had never loved me.  Not even one day.  Everything I had believed in was shattered.

I remembered how he had verbally abused his mother and I also remembered that he had once told me, decades earlier, “You remind me of my mother.”  His mother and I are polar opposites in appearance as well as temperament and personality but I understood that his hatred of me had something to do with his hatred of his mother.  I called her on the phone and she confirmed that when he left home to live on his own at age 12, he had told her, “I will hate you until the day I die.”  I began to understand that I was a substitute victim for the person he really wanted to kill, which was his own mother.

I followed the stranger’s advice and spent the next few weeks at the library reading everything I could about narcissism.  It was very enlightening and empowering.

In my quest to understand more about substitute victims, I stumbled upon Rene Girard’s Violence and the Sacred.

As I read the book, the revelations kept coming fast and furious.  It seemed that everything I had experienced in my encounter with a psychopath had a parallel in the mythology and rituals of primitive cultures.  For me, nothing explained the psychopathic encounter as well as Rene Girard’s theories of mimesis and scapegoats.

Through the lens of Girardian theory, the Bible, long held as an inspiration for living a good life, became a guide for understanding the machinations of psychopaths.

Girardian Theory took my shattered reality and gave it new meaning.  I believe it can help others who have experienced a psychopath in their lives.


About Skylar — 21 Comments

  1. Skylar, how terrifying an experience. Be safe always.

    The recurring theme of a maternal hatred and projection of that hatred onto a scapegoat for the psychopath, likely in order to retain the original maternal object, is uncanny.

  2. Dramatized,
    His mask stayed on for a long time, then he was poisoning me so I was distracted from everything else, as I tried to figure out why I was so sick for decades.

    Ancient heart,
    Yes, in psychiatric terms, it’s called transference or projection but it seems like we can get a better understanding from literature and literary theory. Girard’s book, Violence and the Sacred was the only place I found information about substitute victims. It was those specific words that helped me to understand what was happening.

    Sometimes it requires the right choice of words to help us make that leap to the “AHA! moment”. Where we could go on and on discussing scapegoating and transference, projection and sacrifice, but never really “get it”, for me the words “substitute victim” crystalized the meanings behind all these words.

    • Dramatized2, when I’ve had trouble coping, I have called domestic violence centers or hotlines and talked with volunteers. Many domestic violence centers offer free counseling and support groups where you can be with others and share yourselves and your experiences. I personally have not felt comfortable with the idea of entering into support groups but that is me. My own take on that is because sometimes you get mired in other poisonous and toxic situations, even though many women don’t intentionally try to affect you. It’s just that they may harm more than help your efforts to get positive mirroring, understanding, and sound recommendations for a happier you. Talking with a counselor one on one may be more helpful for you, it’s a matter of what you feel is going to help you most.

      Having your experiences and feelings validated by others who have no ulterior motive and take nothing from you is so important. You deserve that.

  3. He was poisoning you too? Oh God.

    I’m looking forward to buying that book this Spring when there is extra money for such things.

    I had a super duper “A HA” moment and I think I found the missing culprit and the real symbolic scapegoat. I wrote my thoughts and intuitive response on your article about Girard’s mimetic theory. What I believe was and is in fact the scapegoating of the Mother and not Jesus, may have been seeded before the Bible was written, but the Bible may have crystallized this belief through our mirror neurons that prove the mimetic behavior Girard described, the development of language, as well as the dawning of “civilization” when humans began to control and dominate nature through agriculture and domestication of animals thousands of years ago. I believe that the Mother, in fact, and all she represented as God’s other half, was split from God and called Satan. And that that is who the true scapegoat has always been.

    Humans struggling to survive in a natural and unpredictable world, in their fear and attempts to control that world, must have felt shame and envy of that natural world they both feared and were in awe of. So with the brain matter they had at their disposal, they split the natural world of God, i.e., a balance of Mother and Father, and made one loving and one evil. Then hid the real scapegoat, Mother, and used Jesus in her place as the phony scapegoat to hide her power and love, which they both needed for their very survival but feared intensely.

    • Ancient heart,
      In the bible, I would say that Eve was the first scapegoat. It makes sense that women and children are the scapegoats because they can’t fight back. A scapegoat is a substitute for the person who actually committed the crime. According to Rene Girard, it provides a “safe” outlet for vengeance that won’t put the community in jeopardy of the spiral of reciprocal violence.

      You will love the book, Violence and the Sacred. It’s really long though. You can read some of it online, by looking inside the Amazon or Google Books links.

  4. My intuition about this I realize could be very upsetting to anyone who is of religious faith and I am not intending to offend them. What I am sensing with all of my being is that the Bible was a story that concealed more than revealed the truth, and was one of the biggest feats of social engineering and propaganda of all time that brainwashed us and programmed us to split God and make a devil so the patriarchy could dominate and control the masses.

    There were Goddess based cultures and civilizations, but that isn’t saying that they didn’t demonize the masculine and do the same damn thing. I wasn’t there LOL. But I will guess that our brains are hard-wired not to have an easy time figuring out this puzzle.

    • Ancient Heart,
      according to Rene Girard, your intuition is right, there are things hidden in the bible and it is about who the scapegoat really is.

      But Jesus was scapegoated. He did die on the cross and he was innocent. Rene wrote about that in “Things Hidden Since the Beginning of the World”.

      I haven’t read it yet though. I can’t afford all the books I’d like to read. So, if you do decide to buy books from amazon, please buy through the links, because I get a few cents for each book purchased.

      • Hi Skylar,

        I am too paranoid to buy anything online. I used to, but not after what has happened to me on the Internet. Since then I only order books through used bookstores.

        I had another “A HA” about the scapegoating of Jesus, that the patriarchy created a character to tell their story as well as conceal the story and its agenda which was to paint themselves (Jesus) as the scapegoat rather than the Holy Mother out of their shame and envy of her unbreakable bond with the Holy Father and/or they could have been crafting the story based on their having been victimized by faulty mothering. It could very well have been Mary who was crucified, who was the real saint, the real Jesus. Pretty convenient. Jesus gets all the attention, pity and glorification, gets a royal title of a “prince of peace.” Either way, I think the story is being told from the surreal genius of psychopaths and that the real scapegoat is the feminine. Another probability is that Jesus was very real and was scapegoated for trying to reveal the demonization of the feminine and the attempt to split her (mother) from God and make her Satan, but the story was bastardized in order to conceal that truth. ?

        • Ancient Heart,
          the lie was that God demanded a sacrificial victim at all. God never wanted a victim, that was the human construct, the way to get out of responsibility for their sins. The bible describes many many scapegoats starting with Eve, continuing with Able and Isaac. Jesus was meant to be the LAST scapegoat. His story reveals the truth about ALL scapegoats: THEY WERE INNOCENT.

          The story of Jesus is similar to what happened to any of us, who are victims of spaths. He went out to do good and they hated him for it. But he set the example of not fighting back, not giving them any drama. His encounter with pure evil, the spaths, is what gave him the ability to sit at the right hand of God and to judge evil.

          That describes how we also gained the knowledge to discern evil AFTER our encounter with the spaths. It isn’t knowledge that can be learned, without the experience of being slimed. Understanding spaths is about wisdom.

          • I have not read or studied the Bible, I only read some parts of it and found contradictions which I found uncomfortable, so I stopped investigating it. I am not speaking from a position of knowledge of the Bible, nor can I quote the parts of the Bible I remember reading that I found contradictory. I don’t have a Bible here to refer to to point them out. Something just tells me that, whether Jesus was a real scapegoat or was masking the real scapegoat, the scapegoat was the mother, the feminine.
            Something about the holy trinity seems to be a deliberate attempt to disempower the feminine by concealing her power-with-God, making her the real scapegoat, as well as making her into a Satan, as it served their agendas.

  5. If I can further ramble on this, we live in utero and our mirror neuron lessons begin there in our mother’s wombs. We receive our most critical mirroring after birth from her. And if things don’t go right, as is proven in the known relationship between psychopaths and faulty early mirroring and bonding, little living Satans are sometimes born. Mothers have enormous power as well as responsibility. I believe the feminine has always been not only the more powerful energy aspect of God, but also the true scapegoat for that reason as well. So the first murder and lie may have have been sourced in the Bible itself but cleverly concealed because it contained many truths. Cookie cutter psychopath style. Not a comfortable revelation for me, but I’d rather have the truth no matter how uncomfortable it is. This is my truth. I don’t expect agreement on this by any means. And I do not in any way negate anyone else’s beliefs or views whatsoever and my intent is in no way to offend them. Please know that. I have to speak my truth, that is who I am. And I am grateful that I feel safe and welcome to do that here. Thank you.

  6. You are a loving and beautiful woman, therefore you are by default amazing and powerful. And the reason why you were slimed too.

  7. Oh boy, it is really something that the sick mother relationship is such a recurring theme with psychopaths.

    If I’m correct that the Bible is a story with characters created to conceal and overlay the truth rather than make it transparent, I think the intent of the patriarchal writers was to tell their story of the Holy Mother that they split from God, making God purely masculine, and then further split the Holy Mother by introjecting the positive Holy Mother into the character of Jesus and relegating the dark aspect of the Holy Mother or feminine into Satan, or evil. Which make sense if one has had a mother from hell who makes little Satans.

    Symbolically, they couldn’t murder the Holy Mother in her wholeness because they feared annihilation. So instead they kept her alive but split her, then split her again.

    They made a one way mirror with a masculine God and a masculine protagonist playing the positive aspects of the Holy Mother. They told their own story of victimization but hid it from the world. That’s my two cents 🙂

    • Ancient heart,
      I think you would really like the book, “The Descent of Woman” by Elaine Morgan. I just finished it and might be writing an article on it.

      • I will make a note of it and hopefully this Spring I can get Violence of the Sacred, Things Hidden From the World, and The Descent of Woman too.

        When I refer to the feminine archetype, I include all of human women, all animals, plants, the mineral kingdom, and Earth herself. I believe God is both masculine and feminine but like our hemispheres, the right hemisphere is the more powerful, as well as the more responsible of the two because of that power. I still think the Bible told a big porker but did it to hide that the healthy feminine archetype of God always had the goods 🙂

        Something else that I know, especially after listening to Mr. Ramachandra talk about the “Ghandi neurons” is that not only humans have mirror neurons as well as all other capacities for consciousness: I believe all mammals possess all of that too. They are so much more dialed in to God. And I believe in our shame and envy of them, as well as all other life, we have pretty been scapegoating life itself into extinction.

  8. Dramatized2, I purchased a book by Richard Leakey called “The Sixth Extinction” which I have only begun reading. I believe his theory is not based on a Darwinian model where evolution is slow and gradual, but believes that there are spurts and anamolies in the evolutionary process where extinction seems to be more a matter of a roll of the dice, so to speak, and apparently there is evidence that smaller life forms have more chance of survival. I peeked into the back of the book LOL and Mr. Leakey isn’t too thrilled with homo sapiens and thinks we are dooming ourselves and the rest of life to extinction by our own choice. I agree with you absolutely that nature’s cycles have built-in wisdom but my own personal thoughts are that homo sapiens have so disconnected themselves from that wisdom of nature and cycles for so long that humans threaten the very fabric and foundation of all life.

    I haven’t read Girard’s book on mimetics and am only going on what my small understanding of it is based on Skylar’s articles, but he obviously is onto something, as is V.S. Ramachandran who has proven Girard’s theory scientifically that we are all connected energetically. That would seem to indicate that unless there is a hundredth monkey collective wave of accountability and responsibility by humankind to address the psychopathology in each of us and look in our own mirrors, we and life on Earth are pretty well screwed. Until and unless we sync with nature as I believe was intended, we will annihilate ourselves and nature. But nature and God having the upper hand, you may be well onto something here. We may as a species become fodder and compost for something positive in the future, whatever that may be. That will be our comeuppance LOL.

    Skylar, I had just read what you wrote about the psychopath having tried to poison you and assume that he told you all he had done after you got away from him. Were you able to have the police involved, or was it such – as I know how psychopaths can literally get away with murder and make everything appear 180 – that you had no way to get police assistance?

    • Ancient Heart,
      I realized he had been poisoning me after I left him. First, 2 days after I left him, I went to check on the house and all the food was gone from the fridge. I couldn’t understand why he would remove all the food. Then as the week went by I noticed that I was no longer in pain — pain I’d had for 20 plus years. I realized he had been poisoning my food.
      He never ate at home, except for canned peaches and boxes of mac and cheese he kept above the cupboards. He even threw a tantrum once demanding that ONE of the pans be designated JUST for him and that I couldn’t use it. Obviously, he was worried about cross contamination of the poison.

      He also taught himself how to vomit without even putting a finger in his throat.

      There were many many many more clues, but I just never would have imagined it. Finally, I contacted him and I asked him point blank, WHAT he had used to poisone me. He told me, “strychnine”.

      Later, I heard that LSD, when it goes bad, becomes strychnine. Also, he had told me that he “used to” sell acid on the street, before we met. Well, now I know that not only did he continue to sell acid and God knows what else, but now I know where he got the strychnine and how he knew how much to give me.

      As far as the police, they were in his pocket. All he had to do is call them and they would harass me.

  9. It seems the police and legal system are so easily duped or bribed. I recall something you had written elsewhere on your website about how the legal system itself enables and encourages psychopaths to “win.” I found it true for myself too in my own personal experience. It leaves one with no witnesses, no advocates, feeling so unprotected and even more vulnerable, with no other option but to pretty much hide like a hunted and stalked animal.

    When you have that first moment of clarity, and then all of the pieces begin to come together, and then more pieces….

    That he admitted it to you when you confronted him point blank must have must have served him to get a thrill for himself by admitting it, knowing he had gotten away with attempted murder must have been an enormous power thrill for him, as well as to stab you with the virtual ice pick of his “confession” because he knew you had discovered what he was.

  10. Ancient One,
    The poisoning with strychnine wasn’t to kill me, it was only to make me so miserable that I’d kill myself. He had not counted on my tenacity and my curiosity, my determination to heal myself. By using large quantities of magnesium and other supplements, I ended up with irritable bowel syndrome which sent me to the toilet several times a day. That cleansed the poison out fast enough that I was feeling much better, but still dependent on those supplements. When I left him, I stopped taking any supplements but remained pain free.

    It bothered him so much, that I had outwitted him even without knowing what was happening and he said, “You know, it’s not good for you to have diarrhea EVERY day.”

    Anyway, he realized that I was not going to commit suicide, so he was planning to do it for me with an over dose of sleeping pills. He had been stealing small amounts of my Lunesta every month. And he had been telling everyone who would listen that I was suicidal and depressed and drug dependent. That was the plan.

    When he admitted to poisoning me, he wasn’t admitting to attempted murder, he was just bragging at his cleverness in poisoning me for so long.

    A different time, when I accused him of attempting to kill me, he just stared and didn’t say a word.