Observing a Psychopath
Years ago, I rented a car and drove over a mountain pass to pick up the psychopath and his minion from his job site. On the drive back home, I chose a different mountain pass because it was shorter. This 400-mile scenic highway climbs through some perilous stretches of hairpin turns and steep drop-offs. I knew it would be a white knuckle drive. At each twist and turn, with every oncoming car, I imagined us careening over the cliff.
Psychopath rode shotgun while Minion sat behind him in the backseat. In my rear view mirror I could see Minion’s eyes and he could see mine. Psychopath gave no indication that he was anxious but in my peripheral vision I could see his right hand on the door’s hand rest. As we approached each turn, he would grip the handle tighter and then he’d relax his grip when we’d made it past. I knew he disliked not being in control. Minion commented on the dangerous curves and I mentioned that I could see Psychopath tightening his grip at every turn. Minion replied, “Wow, you must have really good peripheral vision because I’ve been watching your eyes in the mirror and you haven’t taken them off the road once.”
I have no doubt that living with a psychopath for 25 years has trained my peripheral vision. Instinctively, I had developed a habit of not looking at his face but still watching for movement from the corner of my eye.
Psychopaths Need Attention — Please Don’t Feed the Psychopaths
Peripheral vision is an important tool for observing a psychopath, both in the literal sense and figuratively speaking. This is because the psychopath never stops lying. He never stops performing his scripts, as long as he thinks he has an audience.
Peripheral vision allows you to observe without giving him the attention that he desperately requires in order to prey on his victims. This pathological desire for constant attention serves his narcissistic need for supply. Without attention, he has no one to perform for, nobody to exert his will over, nobody to con and manipulate.
A psychopath tailors his performances to mirror his victims. He becomes whatever you need him to be.
Because he lacks a nervous response, he can put on the most convincing act you’ve ever seen. When you’re observing his performance, you don’t just watch, you FEEL what he wants you to feel.
Psychopath used to rage if I didn’t look at him while he was talking. “LOOK AT ME WHEN I TALK TO YOU!” he demanded. “If you look away, I’ll start over from the beginning!” Then he would start over, very slowly, dragging out some convoluted explanation, as my eyes glazed over with boredom.
Without your undivided attention he can’t pull his con. His lies are powerless if you aren’t listening. He has to be able to watch your every micro-expression so he can tailor his mask to your reactions. Psychopaths are obsessed with observing and understanding our facial expressions. Our facial expressions tell them whom to envy, so they can choose their next prey. Facial expressions validate that they have successfully accessed our emotions and hooked us in their games. Finally, our facial expressions tell them when they’ve won the game as we stare in shock and awe after they’ve pulled the rug out from under us. By not giving them our attention, we deprive them of the feedback they need to play us.
Why We Believe the Psychopaths’ Lies
I watched the Psychopath lie to everyone he ever met. It boggled my mind but he explained why he lied. He explained that most people are vicious and will eventually turn on you for no reason, so his lies were simply preemptive protective measures. I trusted that, with Psychopath’s vast experience and superior understand of people, he must be right. I also believed that he trusted me, knew that I loved him and therefore, he had no reason to lie to me. So I believed he didn’t lie to me. Of course I was in deep cognitive-dissonance and denial because I had heard him lie to me many times. Yet, I still believed.
There are several reasons why I believed his lies. First, I had never imagined that anyone could lie ALL THE TIME. So if I didn’t have absolute proof of a lie, I believed it must be the truth. But on the contrary, psychopaths never stop deceiving, it is their nature.
Secondly, there was no reason to lie to me. None that I could imagine. If he was lying to protect himself then he didn’t have to lie to me. I couldn’t imagine ever wanting to hurt him. But of course, he knows his intent to harm others will likely be met with a desire for vengeance. His lies were not preemptive defense tactics against enmity, they were his exit strategy.
The third reason that I believed his lies was because when he lies, he performs with his entire body. Every phony expression, every practiced movement, testifies to the veracity of his statements. He has no nervous response that would betray him.
I’ll never forget the day I realized he was trying to take possession of my business accounts. My mind immediately recalled the previous day when he had taken me into his arms and said, “Honey, I LOVE you!” It felt so real, the acting was superb. But a 180° change of heart doesn’t happen overnight, so I realized then, that his declaration of love had been a sinister lie.
Since that day, I have observed many psychopaths lying audaciously to me. I knew they were lying, but they seem so real, my emotions responded to them as if they were telling the truth, even though I knew they weren’t.
Our Empathy Makes Us Vulnerable to the Performance
When we pay attention to a psychopath, it triggers their performance: facial expressions and body language coupled with a stupendous lie. With each performance, his facade is fleshed out and solidified in your mind because human beings are not expecting to interact with two-dimensional cartoon characters. We expect to find three-dimensional human beings like ourselves.
Figuratively speaking, we can think of peripheral vision as a way to allow the psychopath to turn his focus on another victim while we observe the show from a different angle. As he is performing for the new victim, he must turn to face his new victim so he can mirror them. From this angle we can see that he has all the depth of a thin mirror or a paper cut-out of a human being.
Finally, we must keep at the forefront of our minds the thinness we’ve seen because when the psychopath mirror turns again to face us, he will magically appear three-dimensional once more. If you have the audacity to question the depth of his being, the psychopath will use charm, pity or rage to convince you that you didn’t see things correctly, you’re crazy or just dumb. Of course he’s a fully dimensional human being, he will tell you. Can’t you see that now? With his rational explanations and his Oscar winning performance, you just have to believe him.
If you find yourself faced with a dramatic performance, I recommend you turn away and only observe with your peripheral vision. Let the drama queen perform for someone else while you take notes.
That’s true. You can educate kids, and people who have experienced it. And of those, most of them won’t be aware of what they’ve experienced. They don’t understand that the automaton who hurts them, does so because the automaton lacks a soul or conscience.
Sometimes, I’m amazed how fast you can start to recognize a spath once you understand their manipulative tactics and the games they try to play. I just had a very recent online example this week.
Last week a Belgian minister has ratified a new law about homeopathy (not meaning natural herbal medicine, but dilluted potions) that sparked a huge debate all over newssites and facebook. Personally for me the positive about this law is that it only allows doctors, midwives and dentists to practice it – they are best equipped to decide whether the placebo effect (which I do accept as being very powerful and effective indeed) suffices or actual medication or surgery are in order. On the other hand this law seems to give a cloak of ‘accepted science’ which it isn’t. It included many people who argument anti-science and as born “teacher” I explained the scientific method as well as the recognized reality of the placebo effect (it does have a positive influence on the well being of patients).
Phase 1: Anyhow at some point a female profile asks me whether I could find proof of an “evolutionary equation for humans”, because a certain spokesman of SCEPP couldn’t. The term was really weird to me and I asked the profile what she meant by it. But I also had a nagging feeling about: what does it have to do with me that a certain somebody else from an organisation I’m not even a member of couldn’t answer the weird demand either? The female profile told me she didn’t understand herself that much, nor the math behind it, since she had not HS degree and “admittedly she felt “ashamed” over that. I went in search of the original demand at that SCEPP forum which very obviously came from a troll who was very high in narcissistic traits (the superiority feeling was glaring you in the face). In short he demanded them to write down a natural physics law of a human (evolution equation is a specific analytical differential equation… this is the math I’m studying for three exams the coming weeks). Of course that demand is completely absurd. I can write down such an equation to show why it takes 3 ms for the eye to adjust each time when I do a pirouette, but it’s pure nonsense in the context of a human in general. Anyhow, I posted a layman explanation regarding this math back to the female profile and also posted that as a teacher I knew “she” did not need to be ashamed of not having that degree: sometimes pupils have so much trouble on their plate that being a “scholarly pupil” just can’t be high on their priority list. But they could if they want and are motivated afterwards still get a degree in adult education. I also explained how the demand on that equation had come from a troll on that forum.
(Remark: this phase of the discussion was the “empathy trap”)
Phase 2: Another profile (called Pjetr) now started to answer. The female profile never replied to me anymore. Pjetr first gave the impression as if he was a layman who learned from my layman explanation post. But in the consequent question and answers revealed he knew the Schrodinger equation. So, not so layman after all. He also spent one whole post working himself up about me referring to the original demander a “troll”. He also tried to make it appear as if the original discussion on the fourm or all the posts of that “troll” must have been deleted, because he couldn’t find them. They were not deleted, since I had found them on my research on that referred site: this meant that Pjetr probably was banned from the scepp forum. But then apparently he “knew” the troll personally, because he explained the troll’s intent of the demand to me and at least admitted the equation demand was indeed a nonsense request outside of natural physics. I started to suspect more and more that Pjetr was the troll of that forum and probably also the first female profile (who had a weird last name… her last name was some kind of “tell”). Still for a while I replied to some of the arguments made: his arguments were that the only true science was the one that involved differential equations, and that testing, measuring and statistics were non-science. Let’s just say I gave him rope. The more he got cornered in his faulty reasoning (some phenomenons, even in natural physics, are stochastic or chaotic in nature and so demand not an analytical math approach, but a statistical one or other forms of math), the more vain his replies became. Eventually he literally said “the lower studies such as law, history and accountancy” and opined how some physics noble prize winners weren’t deserving of it. The narcissistic side glared through. For me that was the final flag I needed to be sure and show to anyone who might have been reading along that Pjetr was a deceptive creature and who looked down on other people. My final reply to him was that I would halt any further discussion with him because he looked down on other people, whereas I did not. I told him he could take that very personal, because I avoid to associate with certain people who show signs of manipulativeness, deception and vanity. That there was no point in replying to me, since I’d block the Pjetr account from my fb profile and so wouldn’t even read any reply of his.
Phase 3: “Peter De Pooijer” (which translates to Peter The Pimp” although the actual Dutch word for pimp is spelled Poojer without an “i”, it just looks more legitimate as a genuine last name that passed through the generations with the “ij” spelling) posted. He asked me how Pjetr could even read my reply if I had blocked him (he couldn’t, but I didn’t care, my reply wasn’t meant for Pjetr, but for the anonymous reader…kinda like we used to say “potted plant”). Then he asked me that since I had read the SCEPP forum, whether these SCEPP people were starting to discourage the use of painkillers, deflamation blockers and anti-depressants. He argues how SCEPP is portrayed as being objective, but that the spokesperson isn’t fully and then actually says: since the top world of scientists isn’t that big in Belgium and you’re studying sciences maybe you could interrogate the spokesperson about it. He tries to manipulate me by saying: “or maybe you feel confirmed with his short-sightedness and thereby feel an affinity for him and then you’ll end up being used by the spokesperson to carry his vision.” (talk about projection here). His post ends with “Note: it is possible that in a moment of frustration he could pretend to make it look as if I don’t know what an evolution equation is. Of course, indeed, nothing is less true than that. In the past though I have gauged his knowledge of theoretical natural physics, and he PROJECTS his failure on such fantasies. My dishonesty was just a GAME of MIRRORS” (capitalization of the tells done by me).
I instantly felt appalled by his reply (WTF moment): he was trying to use me as some errand boy. And I confronted him about this asking why these 3 (3 x Peter, or 3 different profiles) sought me out for this. I didn’t know the spokesperson nor even the scepp forum. I said: “Why don’t you ask scepp and the spokesperson themselves? I’m not your errand girl. My time is MINE, not yours (and I don’t need a PIMP). Who the spokesperson and scepp os I’ll discover on my own time and pace, but I am definitely sure I do not want to have anything to do with you 3, because you acted with deception, think manipulatively and don’t even question it. But here are some references for you to consider regarding your animosity towards psychiatry: they have labels for people who have little or no empathy (but pretend to be or desire it from others), who have a high degree of vanity and act and think manipulatively, and who ‘mirror’, ‘project’ and use ‘masks’ and love to play mental ‘games’. These labels are ordered amongst the personality disorders. I’m sure there exists no differential equation for them, though you can always try and ask Robert Hare whether he can pull one out of his hat. But I ain’t BLIND: when I see one, I know one. That APPLE had already long dropped.” (in the Pjetr discussion he tried to use the dropping of the apple combined with blindness as some argument example).
Sorry, for the detailed reciting of the discussion, but I think it’s a perfect example of the tells and red flags you get almost instantly, even in a very intelligent psychopath, especially if they are immensely high on the narcissistic traits. He couldn’t stand being banned from the SCEPP forum and so tried to lure and use me as a spokesperson for him: first he tried to get me there using the sympathy card. “I don’t have a HS degree, I don’t understand the math, but can you find out at SCEPP what this is all about”. It was a narcisstic injury to him that I referred to “him” as a troll (not yet knowing it was “him”) and therefore not worthy of further communication. Then he realized I knew what I was talking about and tried to persuade me that aside from natural physics nothing else is science really (just the lame leading the blind). In a way it was a veiled lovebomb and an association trap: since physics is what I study he would suppose my vanity would be stroked by calling it the only real science (but it is his own vanity projected into it). While the put down on other “lower” studies and professions might have been a clear tell to me, it was also an attempt to see whether I would follow and come down to his level of looking down on other people. After my final reply to Pjetr he knew I wouldn’t fall for that. So next he just blatantly tried to treat me as someone who would run his errands for him, meanwhile it rained red flag words all over his post. And to that I said no, meanwhile signalling him that I knew who and what is behind the mask (and yet without directly using the label) and throwing his tell words right back at him, but in its proper context.
This is the most contact or words I spent on a psychopath since at least a year, but I didn’t mind it so much, as it was a good reminder on how much they show themselves if you know what to pay attention to. Indeed, give them some rope, and they hang themselves.
That’s a great story! for so many reasons.
Nothing attracts the trolls like a debate over “beliefs”.
Even real science is perceived as “beliefs” by psychopaths because they tend to doubt the veracity of everything — even reality. And it really bothers them when people have faith in anything, unless that faith is in THEM. The ability to believe is considered a “weakness” to be exploited by them. In their eyes, belief is what makes us vulnerable and sheep.
It’s also fascinating how much time and effort they will put into undermining other peoples’ beliefs — as you showed by explaining the different phases of the con.
The first phase, or as you called it, the “empathy trap” was like a pity ploy, similar to Ted Bundy’s leg cast and crutches. The online spath used a helpless, female persona, requesting help because of her shameful lack of education. It’s interesting that he chose a female persona, indicating that he believes women are more pitiful.
That’s the hardest thing: discerning when our empathy is well-placed or misplaced. It’s only in phase 2 that the red flags of narcissism begin to show up and we can know, in hindsight, that the previous phase (whether it was pity, charm or rage) was a trap.
The rope trick always works though, you are absolutely right. They are like cats, they can’t resist a bit of string!! LOL.
I have to disagree with you on homeopathy. I think there is something to it.
Spath and I used to take them for the flu and we called them our “placebos” because, though they seemed to work, there is no way to prove that they work.
Then one day, I had to go for a long drive with the spath and I knew he was gearing himself up to create a drama and make me have an accident. I just happened to have some homeopathic mints, called Stress Less. Of course, the spath won’t take anything that would calm him, so I placed them on the console in the car, in a candy dish. As I drove, I would eat a couple of mints. When the spath noticed me eating them, he grabbed a few as well, as I knew that he would. He gobbled down quite a few.
He was quiet most of the ride. Then he asked, “what are those?”
“They’re mints.” I replied.
“Are they supposed to do anything?” he asked.
I hesitated to tell him but decided to be honest. “Yeah, they’re supposed to make you less stressed. Why? Do you feel different?” I asked.
“Yeah, I feel less stressed and I don’t like it.” he grumbled.
I bit my tongue and didn’t laugh out loud. It’s interesting that the mints didn’t affect me at all even though I knew what they were supposed to do, but they affected the spath and he had no idea.
Maybe homeopathy works better on spaths?
Not sure whether these were truly homeopathic mints. I know the original principle of the inventor of 200 years ago was that something that creates certain symptoms in a healthy person can be used as a compound to treat people with such symptoms.According to that principle if for example peeling an onion makes you cry and sniff (like a cold does), the onion or at least the chemical elements that cause the sniffing and crying can be used to treat a cold. It’s a similar principle as in: if you have a poisonous plant growing somewhere the antidote will be growing next to it. As a child I used to treat blisters from the nettles in the field next door with buttercups as both grew next to each other. Blisters were gone almost immediately. Not sure whether scientific research agrees with either of those principles, but it does not sound unreasonable.
But the second principle of homeopathy is that one has to dilute the chemical element: the smaller the dose, the more it is supposed to have an effect. And as long as the chemical element is still present it might even do something. But here’s the problem: when something is so diluted that the element isn’t chemically present anymore, the solution or compound simply becomes water/alcohol/pill/mint with a ‘memory’. Chemistry ain’t my preferred science, but I do remember the (for me hateful) calculation with the number of avogrado to count the number of atoms and molecules of a compound or element. And the number of dilutions with homeopathic stuff is in the numbers that it could be compared to you pouring 1 kilo of sugar in the Atlantic and me taking out a bottle at my side of the big pond and call it sugared water. There’s no atom or molecule left of it anymore.
Meanwhile, some natural medicine is sold as homeopathic (because it’s a popular label) but without being so diluted as the second principle requires and still present, just at levels that do not require any research or need to pass medical health commissions. The latter wouldn’t be actually homeopathic, but natural medicine in small dosage. Just an example: in the supermarket ginseng tea is labeled as homeopathic, even though it’s ‘herbal tea’. I think a lot of the homeopathic marketing is done because people associate ‘homeopathy’ with ‘medicine’ without the company needing to advertize it as ‘medicine’, even though it is strictly speaking not homeopathic at all. If you advertize something as ‘medicine’, even ‘herbal medicine’, you can only do so under strict rulings. So, they can’t advertize their herbal product as ‘herbal medicine’ and circumvent it by advertizing it as ‘homeopathic’.
LOL he just tried to engage me in it again with a 4th alter ego, this time a French version of his name, crying that he can’t ask the people from Scepp because he can’t go on the forum anymore (aka banned), and he basically said that by refusing to do this for him I’m just showing I can’t even reach the tips of his soles in intelligence and am short-sighted. And my allusion to personality disorders: perhaps in time they can be helped and it’s just an example of how not-scientific psychology and psychiatry is. Oh and he IS a MIRROR (he claims.) Whatever, I just blocked his 4th alter ego. I ain’t replying anymore, because it will be just a repeat of the best response I already gave him. Before long though I expect my ‘blocking’ him will turn into petty tirades of hi kicking around like a child. His last response was already showing his nature better to onlookers: frustrated blaming me without having any cause for it.
It partially a word-game. In Dutch we call science ‘wetenschap’ which translates to the ‘study of knowing’. And his word-game point is that since most sciences can’t formulate an exact analytical math equation (aka law) with that type of math, they don’t really don’t know much. Easy examples would be: I know that of a radioactive compound half of it will have turned into another compound within a certain time (called the half-time), but I can never precisely say which of the atoms will change. Similarly I can calculate how long it takes for a falling apple to drop on the ground, but I can never predict which apple will drop. And we will never be able to predict that, because those are stochastic processes. We can only predict within margins of chance what may or may not happen. And because we don’t ‘know’ precisely a bit of the puzzle, he claims we have no knowledge altogether. The discussion works semantically in Dutch, but not in English.
But Jill, you forgot the part where they shake the homeopathic remedy in order to impart the vibration energy into the water. Each time they dilute the remedy, they also shake it, so that the more diluted remedies have been shaken more times.
I really don’t care how it works, I only care if it works, even if it only works as a placebo. But in this case, it didn’t even work as a placebo on me because I felt no difference. That’s why I was shocked that the spath felt calm. The mints were actually nothing more than sugar pills with the “vibrational energy” of various minerals. I never told him that they were homeopathic.
There is a remedy made from scorpion venom that is supposed to cure opposition defiance disorder. It would be great to line up a series of spaths and see how well it works. We would have to do it double blind, of course. And we would have to give a different placebo to a control group of spaths. The problem is that spaths lie, so how do we know they aren’t just controlling themselves temporarily?
In fact, that is what might have occurred in this story:
I’d be curious to find out how this kid turned out.
It sounds like your online troll has moved his focus from creating drama in his natural science forum to manipulating empathetic people into doing it for him. Despite his intelligence and knowledge of science, it remains meaningless to him unless he can get other people to agree with him or to do his bidding. Even real science is just a MacGuffin to a spath.
lol, yeah the shaking is crucial. Actually the whole troll reply came to a post where I wondered aloud that if water has a memory it also could have amnesia or get altzheimer. 😉
The problem is that there have been numerous researches done with actual placebo control groups and groups with homeopathic medicine: while there is an effect it never exceeds the impact of the placebo effect, and thus no more than the control group. I don’t expect a double blind study with such kids and the scorpion venom have any different findings. There are other heavily debated and contested treatments that get better proven results than homeopathy (like chiropracticion and accupucture).
Yeah, he’s just trying to get and find others who find it important to be seen as objective to do his work. I ain’t playing. He might throw another tantrum tomorrow or so, but if I block that he’ll probably look for another target.
Have you considered a placebo effect by proxy on the spath? You may have unconsciously signaled that this was not an ordinary mint, which prompted him to be suspicuous. A true double blind test would have been that you had two jars of mints, one where at the time of taking one, neither you nor the spath knew whether it was a homeopathic mint or a normal one.
water alzheimer’s! that’s priceless.
Since both spath and I consider homeopathics to be mostly placebo, it would be a double placebo anyway!
Though I do take herbs and supplements, I never expect homeopathics to work because other than a couple of them (magnesium and oscillum), they’ve never worked. I’m sure that I didn’t let on about the mints because if I had, the spath wouldn’t have eaten them. He was extremely paranoid about being poisoned. After all, he WAS poisoning ME. In fact, he had taught himself how to vomit on the spot, without even needing to insert a finger in his throat.
I’m not saying that I’m always good at being deceptive, but when I drive, I focus on driving and don’t move my eyes from the road. (as I mentioned in the article) So it makes it easy to avoid acting nervous. From my peripheral vision, I could tell that the spath was clueless. lol.
Plus, if he was suspicious, he would have assumed that I would give him something to make him sick and puked it up, not something that made him calm. He actually experienced the correct result. From his lack of dramatics, on that trip, I could see that it was working.
It’s good that you are keeping your spath spotting skills sharp. Just watch for the slime. It can spray on you even when you think you’re being careful. I’ve recently had to deal with some of that and I’m still wondering how I’m going to get out of it without losing a friend. She is involved with a spath and clueless.
Yea, Jill, I also learned something about dogs afraid of storms….if you pet the dog and try to calm it when it “goes crazy” you are actually encouraging the dog to be afraid, so the treatment that works is to SCOLD the dog for its behavior. I had a collie that was TERRIFIED of storms and I would try to comfort him with soft words and pets, but when I found out about the scolding, I started doing that and he finally got to where he realized that he would be okay. I would never have thought of that treatment myself, I read or heard it somewhere but it sure works.
Dogs are SOOOO sensitive to the feelings of those around them and many times dogs can pick up danger when we humans filter it out… some men came to my farm not long ago and my guard dog was in the way so I put her in her kennel. these men were from another country and were very curious about everything here and asked what kind of dog she was etc. and we walked over to the kennel and she WENT CRAZY and would have attacked them instantly had she not been penned up.
There was one guy in the group that both my son and I did not care for. He didnt’ say much, and didn’t speak a lot of English but there was “something” about him, while the rest of the men were very nice, this man was somewhat sullen, very subtle but different….anyway, my dog sure picked it up. Normally she is very friendly to visitors once I introduce her and wants them to pet her or scratch her ears, but not these visitors. She was rabid. I’ve experienced the same thing with several dogs andheard many stories about that.
I think that we use “good manners” too many times to mask over our gut instincts about people and we discount our intuition and many times to our regrets I might add.
Jill, your description of the whole episode is very intuitive. Is it possible the “3-Ps” were all the same person?
I don’t know if you remember that sociopath website…I think it was called sociopath world or something like that where the congregated to tell each other about the “sheepeople” and laugh at the things they did to others or not, but this is a perfect example of a spath who is bored and looking for entertainment by showing their “superiority” to the rest of the world.
I think your observations and responses were completely appropriate and 110% right on! TOWANDA!!!
I ran into an MD who also practice homopathy and really,, I think, he believed in it. He talked to me about it, and gave me some books to read on it, “textbooks” and I read them and said to myself THIS IS NOT SCIENCE IT IS VOO DOO…and I put them aside.
If your country allows it to be legal, I am soooo glad that only a real medical professional can practice it at least the person receiving treatment will be assessed by a true medical professional and not just a voo doo practitioner.
It is not illegal here, there are all kinds of “alternative” medical practitioners here and are pretty well unregulated, and their aim, of course, is to sell their medications and “herbs and spices” as I call them.
I have been doing some reading about various of these “medicines” and I know many people believe in them wholly, but the RESEARCH on many of them show that many “accepted” things are actually counterproductive to health. An example is one study by a university medical center that showed that people who took a multi-vitamin every day actually had worse health than people who did not. Now a multi-vitamin pill would definitely be useful in a person with a very poor diet but since westerners usually have a fairly balanced diet (compared to our ancestors even 75 years ago) we pretty much GET the vitamins we need from food, and vitamins K, A, D and E are TOXIC in excessive doses and are not ones in which excess can be eliminated via the urine. So, I decided to stop my mult-vitamin pill, but it was on RESEARCH not just pseudoscience.
There ARE benefits to some products….for example. My son has gout and takes the medication to help lower his uric acid which causes the swelling, and joint damage, but I read a study about it and it only reduces the episodes of acute gout by 52%…another UNIVERSITY MEDICAL STUDY of a large cohort of people with gout tested the “old wives tales” about cherries helping gout, and found that a cherry extract in addition to the medication would reduce the outbreaks by another 28% so we started him on the cherry extract in addition to the regular medication, and instead of an outbreak every 3 months, he has only had one every 9 to 12 months.
Other university medical school studies of large cohorts studying various of the over the counter “herbs and spices” (as I call them) have shown that many are not only not helpful but quite the reverse.
Over 25 years ago back when vitamin e in mega doses was being touted as an “antioxident” to help people, a big universioty medical school recruited over 50,000 nurses in a study with double blind admiinistration of several things, including vitamin e…I signed up and took my capsules for about a year and then that part was done. I still get follow up questionaires every 6 months and there are 35,000 people still in the study. They ask very detailed questions about exercise, diet, drinking and smoking and even last year sent me a pedometer to show how much I walked in a week. As people in the study die, their families are questioned about what the cause of death was, and what diseases that person had or what problems, such as high blood pressure etc.
It is only with GOOD research that (with so many variables to health) medications and treatments can be assessed for validity.
Good job on picking up on this troll….
Oxy, I do think the three profiles were one and the same person. After I blocked Pjetr, the profile of the female profile who was so ‘ashamed of not having a HS degree’ was also not visible to me anymore (which is kindof odd). I pointed this particular event out in my one and only reply to Peter the Pimp.
Peter vaguely admitted to having deceived me “only to play the game of mirrors”. But it could also be construed as a deception game to the spokesperson of scepp by readers. Or only as Peter being Pjetr being the troll at scepp. On the other hand I know these Ps love to congregate on their own forum and go on the lookout for people to troll. So, it’s possible the female profile wasn’t Peter/Pjetr but just the first one to get me engaged in their game, which I didn’t mention at all, because that would have made readers think I’m paranoid.
I was careful not to accuse him directly of them being all three the same (I just mentioned it as a possibility though, but left that in the open) nor of labeling him directly. I never used the term narcissistic or psychopathic. I referred to there being personality disorders with labels for people with such and such traits in layman language (full of themselves, vain, …), and yet without directly accusing either one of them of being it. I just said: there are these labels of personality disorders, and I’m just mentioning it for you to ponder about. And in his own cryptic tell language I directly told him: I know what you are. A direct accusation only serves to make people sympathize with their pity-play that surely would follow after it.
Yes, it is voodoo. You have to believe in it, for it to have its placebo effect. Unfortunately many people believe in it, or perhaps fortunately (because that is why it’s powerful to help alleviate physical symptoms of psychosomatic causes). The typical arguments were a combination of “It worked wonders on the wart of my son, and it works better than antibiotics which big farma attempts to get rich on, and that is why they are so anti-homeopathy. And since you never used it or studied homeopathy, you don’t know anything about it and should shut up.”
Pointing out that a) a wart heals on its own b) antibiotics doesn’t work against viruses c) big farma making money on medicine with giant sums of investment into research and development would be silly to forego the opportunity to get rich over selling tap water with a flavour for which they do not have to fund r&d at all, nor pass quality control and ethical commissions d) I actually once had a homeopathic solution prescribed to me as a teen for frustration attacks (not an abnormal occurrence with teens and which go away as one grows older) and so does that give me the right to discuss it being voodoo e) if being experienced is required to be knowledgeable about a subject, then why don’t they apply their own advice upon themselves if they haven’t studied chemistry, medicine, or physics (note: I always said that I did not believe or even argued that they ought to shut up, just asked them that why this particular non-argument was only applied to those who rejected homeopathy as an actual potent medicine, and that HS science basics are taught exactly to see through the hocus pocus) just goes on deaf ears though. I do think that it is the last argument of mine what made the P (or 3 Ps) try a game of knowledge on me.
Of course big farma makes money and is in it for the profit and they too sell stuff over the apothecary counter that may or not work. Of course there are some gigantic narcissists who are CEOs of big farma and in the sciences. But there are even more in the con business (if not almost all). In a pragmatical way, it’s good that doctors will be prescribing the miracle potions, but I’m relieved that my house doctor isn’t into it. He just outright says that all that is needed is time and rest for my body to heal the sprain, or the wart or the common cold, but refers me to a list of specialists when I need actual medical or surgical help. I just wouldn’t trust a doctor who believes in deceiving me with a placebo.
The house doctor who prescribed me the homeopathic solution when I was a teen, also prescribed me anti-depressants several years later when I talked of listlessness and not being able to identify my emotions clearly anymore. When I started to see a psychiatrist on it, my psychiatrist weaned me off the anti-depressants from the get go, saying I didn’t need them, because I wasn’t depressed, but having a reactive identity crisis for which group therapy was the best aid. That house doctor was a kind lady. She was genuinely concerned. But I don’t think she was the best medical doctor in hindsight.
Jill, they did a medical study on warts, and DID determine that “voo doo” does make them go away if the person BELIEVES…I “witched” them off children easily and on adults, I would tell them to put “duck tape” on the wart and that would deprive it of oxygen and it would die…worked every time. Much easier than freezing them off or digging them out. On some plantar warts (sole of the foot) that are extremely painful, like walking on a nail with sometimes a root 1/2 an inch long, we did surgically remove them but very seldom. The “voo doo” worked well with 99% of them. LOL
I know the placebo effect is POWERFUL, so it should tell us that how we THINK effects our health very much, the mind and brain are powerful organs. That’s why stress is so hard on our bodies and our thinking as well.
I am fortunate to have a great medical physician as well as a trauma therapist when I need him who GETS IT! And so many people have neither. I don’t try to be my own therapist or physician…and that’s hard believe me. LOL
I am so glad to be off web sites where there are frequent trolls, borderlines looking for attention, etc. It is just such a waste of time…I’ve only had ONE troll come on my site and I figured him out and banned him.
Oh, but I completely recognize the power and the benefits of the placebo effect. It can help on rash, warts, the flue. When we start to focus on something positive and with hope, this releases hormones and feelings of well being that helps us heal. But my house doctor accomplishes the same thing by telling me that my body can heal itself. So, instead of a pill or a potion he helps me realize what my body can do. When I’m sick I usually do not have severe symptoms for longer than a day, or at least I don’t feel horrible for long.
About warts: have one now at the tip of my finger. I apply something to it, that helps me scratch it off in layers. I’ve had warts as a child on my feet, and they were surgically removed. I’ve had them frozen off too as a teen, but that hurt immensely. It kindof reminds me of the fever blisters: they appear especially on moments of stress, when I’m blocking the stress or not aware of it… like on the train on the way to the airport before a holiday and such things.
And it even works by proxy, Oxy: make a dog owner give something homeopathic against fear for thunder to the dog, and the dog will respond better… because the dog owner behaves subtly different to the dog because of their expectations. Also works on children.
This is the website I think you might be referring to, oxdrover: I remember when I was on LF, about a year or more, ago, and someone there had mentioned it. Have never viewed it, but now I’m inspired. Perhaps not a good thing, yet, I am curious…
Edited by Skylar:
I removed the link because I don’t want links to spath websites coming from 180Rule.
Actually there are other, more interesting, spath websites that I would link to IF I was going to do that.
For now, we’ll have to let Google and Bing be our guides!
Yea, that’s it…but please believe me, I have no NO desire to go there. LOL Interacting with them, even reading their drivel and grandstanding among themselves is high in the PUKE FACTOR..so I’ll pass.
I am so into peace and tranquility right now that any form of DRAMA RAMA is just a waste of time. It is amazing how great life can be when you eliminate them from your life and from INSIDE YOUR HEAD…I am afraid I kept mine inside my head with bitterness and anger and pain for way too long after they were physically gone from my life.
If that makes any sense….
Makes total sense, Oxy.
That website is so creepy, the people are so shallow. They sometimes try to have conversations but it usually devolves into cursing, insults and name calling. It brings to mind a bunch of monkeys hanging out in a tree throwing feces at each other. How Bizarre!
There is a better blog by a convicted murderer who actually has a link to 180. His bloggers stay civil to each other. But I won’t link to that one either.
I think it is important that we learn about them, but NOT by associating in any way with any more of them. There is plenty written about them clinically by Bob Hare and others, and trying to INTERACT with them is toxic I believe. Remember “curiosity killed the cat”!!!!
I used to give people chance after chance to show me that what I was seeing in them (RED flags!) was not the real them, but now I no longer give people chance after chance. At the first sign of immoral or amoral behavior I am done with them…irresponsibility, mischief of any kind, dishonesty, criminal behavior, hateful behavior, or whatever of that kind of thing I see that indicates to me that the person is “toxic” I stay away from it like I would a poisonous snake.
And just like a poison snake, it can’t hurt you if it is NOT NEAR YOU. I think we need to focus on ourselves and our own healing and growth.
We will come across toxic people both in real life and on line, and as soon as we see them we need, I think, to disengage any and all interaction with them. Sometimes if you work with them that isn’t easy, and in the past I have changed jobs because of a toxic boss or co-worker that created chaos in the workplace. To me it is important to decrease the stress in life….I wish I had applied that to my own FAMILY situation 25 years before I did. LOL
I find that not only do I think I should avoid these types, and I do- I also find that even when I watch something that has highly psychopathic themes, characters, behaviors I still get a stress reaction. I have to be pretty careful what imagery, films, books, etc…that I take in.
Early on I did visit a couple of websites sympathetic and catering too psychopaths. It was triggering then, but I was in the learning-about-them place and it didn’t take long for me to take what I needed, and then never visit again.
These days I am so careful with myself; nurturing, trying to be protective. After living through multiple psychopathic betrayals, and coming to terms with my early childhood, I cherish my life, my peace, my freedom, and stability. I am not willing to forfeit any of that for someone who only takes. Of course I will go out of my way for the folks I know I can trust, who are dearest to me. But I won’t waste my energy on anyone who doesn’t ‘deserve’ it.
Shane, I know you didn’t ask for advice, but do be careful with your own emotional reactions if you visit one of these pro-spath sites. They can really get your stress hormones pumping, before you even really know it. I found I got jazzed up and more fearful, making it hard to relax and sleep and feel safe. Our bodies often respond to ‘threats’ our minds do not even register (the gift of rapid processing, or ‘intuition’). And, you noticed something about Skylar that I believe is a true gift that she posesses. She is excellent at dissecting the behaviors and manipulations of spaths, and explaining them in a very concise and clear way. I have learned a lot from her dissections (thanks Skylar!).
I have also learned, over time, to be able to see these behaviors when watching movies, etc…it is more difficult when there is more social ‘noise’ and the spath is in the same room with you, and maybe a bunch of other people. Being quiet helps me. Just observing, not offering any information, and checking in with my more subtle body feelings.
Slim, well said!!! We must nurture and protect ourselves like we would a wounded animal or child…; we must keep ourselves SAFE and stress free. Interacting with this time….even in movies sometimes….gets that old stress pumping and we do NOT need that. Stress is counterproductive to our healing…I wish that I had practiced that from the early times, but I kept participating in the DRAMA and the stress until it nearly did me in, and wasted many years in pain and stress…but now I am determined to live a peaceful and low stress life over here in my “hole in the woods” and appreciate the things I have here.
A friend of mine came over…she is under TERRIBLE stress from her entire family (drama queens) shunning her and her mom just dying….and she kept on about how peaceful, “almost holy” that my yard is… private…surrounded by trees and no visual of a road or another house, no traffic noise….and everything is green and beautiful….and it gave me a NEW appreciation for what a peaceful play I do have…she lives in town on a busy street and hates it there. So you know we need to appreciate every flower, every moment of peace, and joy and by appreciating it, by being grateful to it, we can c ome not only to peace, but to JOY.
I love to garden so I have been planting veggies and flowers and just reveling in the joy of springtime after a cold and miserable winter.
I so relate! My friend told me my condo was like an ‘alter’. She said every time she comes into our home she feels calm and safe and comfortable. I realized after she said that that I had really put alot of effort into my personal space, especially after I reached a certain place in terms of my recovery. I am like you, with your garden…creating sanctuary for myself. It is a manifestation of my self care/love. Another choice we have: inviting peace rather than chaos into our lives.
I relate to the same phenomenon. Now admittedly my parents helped me in establishing a stable home. I rent my apartment from them. But I did get the right to give it an ok, and I fell in love with it as I stepped through the front door from the get go. And just every of my friends and family love to come over and lounge, eat (meal or cake) or have a drink and just relax. Even my parents enjoy to come and visit, while previously they would just hop in to deliver something and escape asap. The words usually mentioned are “relaxing”, “personality”, “a real home”, “light” and “space”.
Slim, 100% spot-on. OxD, you’ve typed it on countless occasions, as well: it begins with “What THEY did,” and evolves into, “All about ME and MYSELF.”
****NOTE: my use of CAPS is intended for emphasis, only, and should not be interpreted or construed to be “online yelling,” under any circumstance.****
Certainly, there is a driving desire to “understand” what psychopaths are, how they become what they are, and everything else that goes along with that. But, the bottom line is that “understanding” what they are will not alter the fact that they simply are – they exist. And, we cannot fathom their thinking, why they think the way that they do, OR EVEN HOW they live as a member of the human species without having a conscience, a sense of remorse, or empathy. We cannot fathom this because we do not live within their Universe, nor would we ever want to. It is a cold, empty vacuum, devoid of emotion, feeling, or human connection. WE DO NOT WANT TO GO THERE.
“But, Truthspeak, if we separate our emotions from our interactions, won’t that make us JUST LIKE THEM?!” No, it most certainly won’t “make us just like them.” The difference is that we – the empaths – DO feel and DO experience emotions and human connections. We have the ability/choice to tone down our empathy and compassion in any given situation so that we are not targeted, manipulated, and used by these people. They ONLY target those that are either easily used and discarded, or those that present a tentative challenge. They do not experience even the most peripheral or superficial human connection imaginable. They don’t. They really, literally do not connect. They cannot connect, and they never will.
So, “understanding” what these people truly are is NOT going to alter them. What can be altered is our own set of individual beliefs, responses, and interactions with people. Learning to keep our mouths shut, observe behaviors of others, and to REWIRE our reactions/responses to swing in a “normal” range is a challenge, but that’s where the process eventually takes us.
I will not visit ANY websites that are hosted by the disordered, especially under the misguided belief that I might gain “insight” into their worlds. I don’t want to gain insight into their worlds – I already know that they are toxic, and that’s ALL I need to know. Now, I’m interested in gaining insight into myself – my Self – so that I can be a difficult target to the next predator that crosses my path. 😉
Truthy, we can not comprehend what a poison snake thinks either, but trying to hold one and pet it isn’t going to make us any wiser…same with even conversaing with a psychopath.
I’ve said this before about this instance, but I think it bears repeating here in this discussion, the psychopathic woman that I let come here and live on my farm in her RV because she was a “victim” (and OH BOY did she wear that victim mask) when I perceived she was a P, I asked her to leave, very nicely, calm voice. She immediately went into spin mode of pity ploy, blaming me for her problems, and on and on, it was like she was whirling around and around at warp spead with a new face each time she came around. I stoood there looking at her and realized that I HAD NO EMPATHY OR SYMPATHY for her. I had 100% turned it off. I wasn’t mad or sad or pitying her plight, I just wanted her GONE. I gave her $150 to make sure she had enough cash for gas to get far away and walked back to my house.
That was the time I realized that the way I felt (NO empathy) while she was crying, begging pleading, and raging, must be the way the psychopath feels when we beg them to stop hurting us. Later I read Dr. Simon Baron-Cohen’s book about empathy and he noted the fact that we can CONTROL it. I never thoguht about that until I experienced it AND then read about it. Made a lot of sense then.
The psychopath will have little or no empathy (as we understand it) so is not able to turn it up at will the way we can turn it down.
Baron-Cohen’s book showed me that the amount of empathy in people can be measured on a bell curve just like IQ or height and the majority of the human race falls in the middle3, with some on the low end and some of the high end. While autistics fall on the low end of the curve, they do not ENJOY hurting others, they may hurt others but they don’t SEEK to hurt others, where as the psychopaths SEEKS to hurt others and takes duping delight in doing so.
You said: “And, we cannot fathom their thinking, why they think the way that they do, OR EVEN HOW they live as a member of the human species without having a conscience, a sense of remorse, or empathy.”
I think this is the reason people who have not been awakened by a psychopathic predation are in denial of the existence of the predators themselves. They don’t know the signs, and the predator doesn’t fit their definition of a human being.
I was certainly in this place, at first. Luckily for me I stumbled upon some internet sites that kept hammering the truth, and eventually I had to submit that things exist that I can never truly have a deep sense of (as in ‘oh, I know how that feels’).
Cause you are right, we can never understand these types, and HOW it is to be them in the world. Since we are informed by not only our intellect, but also by our feeling body and emotions, it is impossible to understand a being who lives a life without a full range of human experience.
But we can still spot them as what they are.
Sparrow wrote in The Sun magazine:
Five Blind Men and a Camel
Five blind men met a camel. Each one touched a different part of the animal. Afterward all of them recognized it as a camel.
“How did you know?” some asked.
“It smelled like a camel”, said the five blind men.
Yea, Slim, if it “quacks like a duck, swims like a duck, waddles like a duck, it’s probably a DUCK!” Same with camels…if it smells like a camel, it’s most likely a camel.. LOL and there are some things we don’t have to see to identify, we can SMELL it. That’s why we FLUSH when we smell it.
Slim, absolutely, it’s a real imperative to know what these people are and how to recognize their behaviors – they all do the same things, invariably, though they tailor their behaviors as per their various prey.
And, it’s factual that nobody “gets it” unless they’ve experienced the behaviors of a disordered person, themselves. When I began the process of divorcing the second exspath, people actually suggested that I “….need to just get over it and move on….” without even batting an eye. There is no “just getting over it and moving on” when we’re recovering and healing from the ravages of a disordered person. The damages that we incur are not only emotional, but typically physical, financial, spiritual, sexual, and psychological. It’s not the same thing as recovering from a flood or an unexpected passing – we can point at the river or the mangled wreckage and say, “See that? That’s what took my ______ from me, and altered my life.”
When our eyes finally open to what we’ve been involved with and we acknowledge that we’ve been betrayed on every level, there typically isn’t anything that we can point to so that others will understand how our lives were altered to such a degree.
After a while, I learned to just keep my mouth shut about what was going on and what the exspath had done. Each person that learned about the exspath’s forgeries and frauds would ask me, “Why didn’t you KNOW what he was doing?!” I cannot recollect any more people than I could count on one hand that would respond with, “What a dreadful betrayal to have your trust shattered like that.” There was no compassion or pity, generally speaking.
Today, I recognize what “glib” means, and other behaviors that are such powerful indicators of toxic/disordered people, and I act accordingly: I get the hayell away from them! LOL!!!!!!!!!
And, without genuinely recognizing those personal issues that made me such an attractive target for the toxic and disordered and REALLY doing the hard work to rewire thinking and decision-making, I’d still be surrounded by “bad people,” I think! 😀
OxD………..”…FLUSH it when we smell it…” ROTFLMAO!!!!!! Indeed….
Truthy, here’s the article on “flush it” just in case you missed it…a friend gave me that analogy and I think it is a perfect fit. http://familyarrested.com/flush-it-away/
You are right, we must acknowledge what Tsunami hit us, but we can with processing etc. MOVE ON. It is not easy to do, I admit, but we must acknowledge the enormity of the situation and that not only was it a Tsunami, but a SPECIFIC Tsunami that we loved and thought loved us.
Betrayal by a stranger or a flood is painful, but it isn’t the same EMOTIONAL toll that we are inflicted with by the betrayal of a loved one.
As far as telliing others ab out how you have been abused and how you hurt…I remember when I came back to the States after being gone a couple of years and my biological father beat and raped me….I escaped from his clutches and my friends hid me for a while until he was back out of the country….and I wanted so badly to have someone VALIDATE my pain, but you know…the thing is that they DIDN’T WANT TO HEAR ABOUT IT. Even people who cared for me didn’t want to hear, didn’t believe actually I think…only a very few people knew what I said was actually true. I finally realized that no one wanted to hear and I quit talking about it. Looking back I think I had PTSD pretty bad then, but at 19 I didn’t know what I was dealing with and didn’t know where to go for help. But you know, I made it anyway. I can only thank God that I finally got my feet under me mentally, spiritually and emotionally and can see how that I allowed these individuals into my life, I didn’t have boundaries with them, and now I realize that some people ARE evil, and that I must at all costs, AVOID these people, put them out of my life and keep them out. NO CONTACT allows me to focus on what I need to do in my own life, not keep putting out fires that they start.
I like to think of these P-people as being in a prison of their very own, ( whether it be from consequences of their own choices or actions, or genetic, or a little of both.) Try as they will, they cant “get out” of their little prison that causes them to see life as they do. They want to at least pretend to relate to us, and our world, and are willing to go to extreme measures convince us that they can, I realized that they are doomed to this interior prison, and that there is nothing I can do to change that. This gave me the wisdom to separate how I interact with them, and how I relate to the rest of the world. They are indeed a different breed.
Frontlinegirl, I”ve sort of taken a similar approach to the world in which ppaths live. It’s a Universe utterly alien to those with compassion and empathy. It’s alien because it is beyond even our most wildest imaginations – there is only ONE resident within the Universe of a ppath or spath, and that is them, alone. Other people may pass through their realm, but those other people are either prey or flotsam and have no more importance than a disposable lighter. Use it until it gives out, then discard it.
The ppath Universe must be a cold, empty, and eerie place, indeed.
There is a lot of them out there in this world…. More than most would like to admit. Ive gotten to the place to when I’m dealing with mine, I’ll ask myself frequently ” What could be his motive here?” before I reply, and sometimes wont respond until I see where he might be going and why. Its really like defensive driving, only with people. Better to out guess your adversary and his course of action, then to end up with your agenda on his dinner plate! Do I sound like Ive been dealing with a Spath too long? Lol.. But seriously I think I might make a good investigator for crime once this is all over.
Wanted to share this song from u-tube love the lyrics-called “Warrior” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KcIEQ7yVTXM originally sung by Demi Lovato, but Brie seems to capture the “heart” of it better, so it is a good identification for us who have been through so much.
Frontlinegirl, I’ve spent an entire lifetime surrounded by very toxic people and a number of spaths. I was married to 2 very different sociopaths. The first one was a abuser, on every level. The second was a financial sociopath that set me up to relieve me of my personal finances – which he did over a series of years (VERY patient sociopath).
What I’ve come to accept about dealing with a sociopath, on any level, is that their motive or intent is quite simple: harm. Whether it’s manipulations to take a better employment position, or to coerce a fragile soul into committing suicide, or to take someone’s personal finances, HARM is the motive.
When we spend our precious energies on attempting to sort them out – what their motivations are, for instance – that energy is taken FROM our recovery and healing and given to them for their own purposes. It took me over 50 years to “get this” simple fact. I don’t LIKE the fact, and I “wish” that I could understand why they are what they are, but *The Knowing* will not alter what they are and what they do. My energies are now serving my personal recovery, boundary construction(s), and building healthy “Self-isms” that never existed until the second exspath was revealed for what he was.
Observe, absolutely. Recognize and accept, diligently. Figure them out? Waste of time and energy because we cannot live where they do, nor would we want to. 😉
I get that I will never fully understand why they reason the way they do.. And you are right the result is harm to the victim which in turn makes the pspath feel more alive, What ever causes pain, creates delight however slight or great it may be.. I would go so far as to say it is an addiction to creating pain in other peoples lives. And since it might be defined as an addiction, the probability might be there for them to have a need to create greater pain as time goes on to get the same fix. I understand all of this as well. My fearlessness of the spath that I am with has evolved from years of his getting away with abusing me. ” because I trusted him” But I do want out, and am working toward that end..But for now I know that my 2 dimensional enemy is working hard on throwing his alter world spin trade off on every thing he can to distort the true reality.
Frontlinegirl, for whatever it’s worth, I escaped a very abusive marriage from the first exspath, and I didn’t have any help to do it – no blogs, no hotlines, no other person that would listen, hear, and just accept that 50% of what I was recounting was actually true. One “close” friend was shocked when I told her that I was going to leave. “I always thought you guys had the perfect marriage! You were always laughing….” I never called the police when he shoved the barrel of a .357 in my face and threatened to shoot our children, then me, then himself. I never reported spousal rape. I never reported the punches, pinches, slaps, or shoves. I told NOBODY that I had to alter my religious/spiritual beliefs in order to be “allowed” to attend church. I never told anyone of these things, so nobody had any idea of what I had experienced and……oh-by-the-way…..passed on to my children.
SO………I clearly and totally understand where you are, what you’re experiencing, and the utter fear that you’re grappling with in terms of getting out. I don’t know what is hindering your exit, and it’s none of my business – I’m not asking you to discuss that matter, on any level. The point of that statement is that there is only one thing to know: that there is NEVER the “right time” to exit. There will never be the perfect opportunity, set of circumstances, or stars in alignment that will allow for a safe and simple exit from an abuser. The only “right” thing with regard to exiting is HOW.
I was told that I would be hunted down like the dog that I was, and shot dead if I ever left the first exspath. I believed him. But, I also knew that I would die if I remained with him, at some point. Either from the stress of the abuse, the abuse itself, or by my taking my own life as the only means to get out. What I did was accomplished in a haphazard, frenzied, and unplanned/unschooled way, and it cost me a great deal. I’ve been writing and counseling (LAY counseling, not professional) on exit strategies for the past 20 years, and that’s the only thing that I can offer you, at this time: there will never be the “right” time.
I won’t go into steps or strategies, at this point. If there is a local domestic violence hotline in your area, call that number and learn about exit strategies and all of the resourced that are available to victims of domestic violence and abuse. I didn’t know about this, and I did it on my own without any support, guidance, or expertise, and it’s never, ever, EVER like movies and television programs would portray – the victim struggles, gets on his/her feet, and lives a life in triumph. It’s a very dicey situation, at best, and this is where “Gray Rock” comes into play on a life-saving level. Giving them NOTHING of ourselves, even a hint that we (their playthings) are planning to leave, makes survival and recovery a strong and likely event.
Brightest and most sincere blessings to you, Frontlinegirl. Protective prayers and energies of strength, courage, and resolve are extended to you.
That is so true, Slim, that our bodies react to triggers that our minds don’t register, even when we are just watching a movie.
Most of my life, I could not watch a scary movie without feeling jumpy. My ex-spath was so acutely aware of this that he would offer to “keep me warm” by holding me very close during the movie. Now I know, that he was getting off on my fear emotions. Interestingly, once I learned about spaths, I don’t react physically to the same scary movies. For example, Silence of the Lambs was really scary the first time I watched it with the spath. More recently, I watched it again and it was more interesting and less scary.
The flight or fight response doesn’t require that we understand evil, only that we recognize it.
Observing spaths has helped me learn about them, but it never comes without a price. We inevitably get some slime on us. Sometimes it feels more like sadness, loss or grieving. Other times we just feel dirty. It always saps our energy, if only a little bit.
Thank you for the compliment. I do find it gratifying when I’m able to articulate the spath experience and my writing helps someone else, as much as it helps me to do it. Basically, once I’m able to find the words that unveil the truth about spaths, it seems to take away their power to trigger me anymore. I guess that’s why I work so hard to dissect and express the experience, it helps to clean some of the slime off. Unveiling the truth is the only way we will ever be able to overcome evil, since evil depends on lies to perpetuate itself.
mainly, I don’t like to link to spath sites because different people are at different places in their recovery and I don’t want anyone to feel unsafe. Sometimes, spaths who own the spath sites will follow visitors’ tracks back to the original link and create drama.
Welcome Skylar…it helps me in the same way. Plus, just like tutoring a student, we learn what we teach. Truth informs ignorance, which leads to more truth.
I read an article, referenced on another web site, written by a young woman expressing the idea that women having more psychopathic characteristics would level the playing field, in terms of women’s empowerment. Unfortunately she didn’t understand her subjects (either psychopathy or women’s inequality and oppression), and thereby made herself look sympathetic to pathological narcissism and critical of ‘feelings/emotions’.
I really thought that one of the things she failed to understand, perhaps because of her age and lack of experience, is that feelings are not a handicap. And, that it is the oldest criticism of women, in general, in the book– that we are over emotional and unable to control ourselves, thereby making us unfit for certain advancements.
If I have learned anything from my trials and hardships it is exactly what you are all speaking to. And it’s that emotions are tools, and we have a choice about how we use those tools.
This makes me much more versatile and genuinely capable than a person who has nearly no emotional range, and impulsive/automated responses; and therefore very few tools for social interaction, business, self-talk, or any other situation that requires discernment and finesse.
One of us is ‘whole’, the other is only a fully formed ‘half’.
I read that article, if this is the one you are referring to:
I had to read it 4 times to really “get” it. I also read the article on LF which disparaged the author’s understanding of sociopaths. I agree that the author probably has never met a spath but I disagree with the comments that she is promoting sociopathy in women as the answer to equality. I think that she is saying the opposite.
Perhaps it’s her writing style that confuses the reader. She begins with the popular perspective that these fictional female sociopaths are admirable heroines. Then she juxtaposes the possibility that they may be playing a losing game:
After this sentence, she takes the opposing perspective and gives as an example, the only “real-life” spath’s experiences when she outed herself: M.E. Thomas. It hasn’t worked out as well for her as it has for the fictional female spaths.
What the author doesn’t get, is that a true sociopath doesn’t ever feel like a loser. They can’t get past their narcissism to ever feel a range of emotion that would include remorse. So, IMO, she is comparing apples to oranges. She is comparing feminist women who dare to compete (and end up losing it all) to female sociopaths who dare to compete without remorse because they have nothing to lose.
But then, I don’t think her article is about sociopaths at all. It really is about feminism and about women versus men in competition.
The only thing that connects these two subjects (sociopathy and feminism) is that the male dominated hierarchy is sociopathic. Men tend to compete against each other and subjugate women. It’s part of our culture and how men are raised and not necessarily genetic, IMO.
It’s because people don’t understand psychopaths/sociopaths, that women think they should become like men in order to compete against them. It’s just the opposite. A psychopath WANTS us to compete with them. They WANT us to mirror them and become like them. They want rivals. They want someone who envies their sickness and admires them for being so shallow and lacking emotions.
Nothing makes them happier than when a woman comes down to their level and succumbs to their games. And BTW, they are acutely aware of what they are doing. They KNOW what they are reducing women to. It’s always the 180 rule, especially when they speak about levels.
Well, now I’m starting to ramble… but this subject really got to me because it takes on the 180 rule, that hidden mechanism of mirroring and victim blaming that seems to slip out of our cognitive grasp just when we think we’ve GOT IT!
I was actually impressed by the author’s understanding of the insidious nature of victim blaming.
Considering that she doesn’t seem to really understand spaths, she does seem to get the hidden mechanism of scapegoating and how it slides under the radar disguised as “helpfulness”.
You amaze me Skylar…I read through it twice and totally missed these details, or at least did not interpret them in the way you have. I think you are right. It is writing style. It confused. Even the statement ‘their trembling ittle shoulders’ made question her meaning. Why not just say ‘their shoulders’? It was her use of sarcasm that put me off.
You know I’m old enough to remember when the NOW (national organization for women) was founded and many of the early members were definitely at least verbally violent…and frankly, while I realize there is STILL an earnings difference between women and men, and a “glass ceiling” for women I don’t think that “becoming like a psychopath” is the answer…though I DO admit that many females high in P traits do “better” financially in the business world because they are willing to step on people.
You know, in my mind at least, that in order to “rise” in the business or military world you have to be somewhat psychopathic otherwise how on earth could you send men to their certain death in combat? I couldn’t do it. I don’t know many people who would be willing to do that, even military veterans. They might GO into combat but they would hesitate to send someone else to certain death.
I wish that the world wasn’t what it is, that psychopaths were not at the helm of our political situations, and military etc. but unfortunately too many psychopaths get there by climbing over the “dead bodies” (sometimes literally) of others.
Look at the current news in Syria, Sudan, Iran, Afganastan and all the other places in the world where religion and power is used to subdue the population. Where people do horrible things out of revenge or out of this perverted belief that if you don’t believe like I do you DESERVE to die.
But that said, I still wouldn’t want to be a psychopath even if it allowed me to become the ruler of the earth. Look at Hitler, Mao, Stalin, Putin, and that creep-o that is over North Korea OMG and there are hundreds of psychopaths in positions of power world wide, and many in business and politics—look at the VA scandal where people were allowed to die so the top brass could get a bonus. Our world is corrupt on so many levels, and you know, it is NOT different from what i t has been since we crawled out of caves…the ones without conscience murder and maim the weaker to get the lollypop and they have no shame or remorse. But, that being said, I’d really rather not think that way because even with the lollypop in their hands they are still not happy. They are still empty shells. My biological father who was a psychopath and a self proclaimed murderer and I know personally of two people he killed, he claimed 70 which I think is an exaggeration, but he became very very wealthy but it gave him NO satisfaction, he was still EMPTY. He despised all other people, yet he craved their ADORATION…He would have been another Hitler if he’d had the chance. He was an evil man and my son Patrick is his clone except Patrick is not as “successful” and is a convicted criminal instead of wealthy.
Yet, with all the evil in the world, there is also love, compassion, goodness and rather than focus or stress out over the things we cannot change, we should focus I think on our own inner peace, our own life. We only have onoe here on earth so I think we should make the best of it by avoiding those who are toxic, and focus on the positive in healing. If that all makes any sense.