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The Meaning of MacGuffin — 145 Comments

  1. MyOwnSaviour, I’m so sorry that you’re experiencing this. Healing from a sociopathic entanglement is unlike ANYTHING that human beings are prepared for.

    ***Please, note: my use of CAPS is for emphasis, ONLY, and not to be interpreted as virtual “yelling,” under any circumstance.***

    When our homes are flattened by an F-4 tornado, we can point to the rubble and say, “See that? That’s all that’s left of my home and the reason that even a breeze sends me off into a state of anxiety.” Communities will rally around survivors of a natural disaster with compassion, understanding, and helping hands.

    When we lose a child to SIDS, we can point at a headstone and say, “See that? That is where my infant is buried and why I don’t even want to wake up, again.” Friends, relatives, and associates will provide comfort, sustenance, and encouragement to the grieving parent(s) who have lost a child to SIDS, a traffic accident, or even the unthinkable – a murderer.

    When we lose our homes, our finances, our sexual identity, and our spiritual beliefs to a human predator, there is nothing that we can point to and say, “See that? That, right there, is a sociopath that targeted, exploited, and left me for dead.” People DO NOT rally around the victim of a sociopath because even the “professionals” refuse to acknowledge the epidemic level of sociopathy within the Human Condition. People will callously respond, “Well, you should have KNOWN what he/she was doing with YOUR finances,” or, “That’s a shame that you’re homeless. You should have KNOWN better than to trust him/her,” or, “Well, he/she is your CHILD and you can’t turn your back on your own blood.”

    Nothing prepares an empathetic human being to recover from being dismantled and ravaged by a human predator.

    Envy. Envy is a pathological desire for something that one does not, has not, and will likely NEVER possess. Spaths experience “envy” because “normal” human beings experience the ethereal emotions and connections that a spath cannot ever comprehend. They are devoid of conscience, remorse, or empathy – they simply move through Life as empty, vacuums that cannot, have not, and will never FEEL even the simplest joy of watching a glorious sunrise or sunset – they see the colors, shapes, forms, and contrast, but it does not and CAN NOT “touch” them. “That would be a good photo image,” might be as far as their “feelings” will take them, but it lacks content and meaning on a visceral level.

    Switching places – changelings – they put us in their camps to develop cohorts, minions, and accomplices. ONLY. They don’t do this in an attempt to become empathetic – they do it for “A Purpose.” And, the purpose is to destroy. The greater the moral and ethical values a target has, the greater the challenge to target, ensnare, dismantle, and discard, successfully.

    Lurking is helpful in gleaning information, MyOwnSaviour, but engaging with and purging of experiences is primary in recovery and healing. Even if you are purging in a journal, getting that venom, that anger, that grief, that disbelief OUT and down onto paper is a purge. Using a writing utensil and actual paper is important because it physically connects us with our emotional feelings.

    OxD put it succinctly: “…Healing is an ongoing process, not a destination.” There’s no schedule, no time frame, and no mandates for milestones in our healing processes.

    Best and brightest blessings to you, today.

    • Truthy, You have such a way with words. I don’t know how to say it…….when I read your words I FEEL them. I feel the anger and betrayal and………..I just feel it.

      I was thinking on a drive home yesterday, what I am the most angry or sad or hurt about regarding this whole thing with Spatntardx. It finally came to me and tears followed. The thing that hurts me the most is that he destroyed the person I loved. He took that person from me and I loved loving “him”. I really did. I can’t even describe how much I miss being in love with “him” and to know that that person was a complete impostor, someone who possibly strung me along on false promises and an act? It’s the saddest thing I’ve never wanted to feel.
      I remember him saying to me……..”you think you love me but you don’t”. I think it was another “tell”.

    • Hi Truth,

      Thank you for your response I appreciate it. I am journaling and doing therapy etc and I’m feeling really good about connecting with my spirituality/soul etc That is a very positive part of this process for me. I do tend towards being analytical and don’t apologise for being that way. I’m just feeling that I duped myself big time and must have a mega blind spot that needs fixing or at least working on.

      I’m feeling very violated on a psychic and psychological level just now. I feel that even though I must have colluded on some level with the ‘performance’, I can’t even think of it in terms of a relationship. I’m not blaming myself but accepting that it takes two to tango, albeit not knowing the rules of the dance or that the dancer is in fancy dress.

      I’m only lurking and not participating when I’m thinking and am lost for words.

      • Myownsavior, I can’t even describe to anyone what it was like with Spathxtard.
        (Caps are not to be taken as yelling, btw)
        It was NOT like a lot of the stories I read. There was a lot of good times together. He NEVER asked me for one red cent. He may have “sponged” somewhat but I had more assets then he did by far because he basically has no assets. It was my home, my bills and I definitely absorbed the majority of the financial side of the relationshit but he did contribute and he did kind of help around here (theres more to that aspect…..it wasn’t “all that”). Even just trying to describe, what I am at this point almost sure he was doing, is SO covert and subject to self doubt and still debatable?? It is maddening. Absolutely maddening.
        I LOVED him SO much and I am still so afraid I have made a mistake and was wrong about him from a long time ago and maybe what happened is that he just gave up and quit trying because he saw that I loved him but didn’t believe in him?? It’s terrible. If only I had irrefutable proof.
        I swear I fear for my sanity and I’m shocked that I didn’t completely loose it earlier this year. It was close and I did some things and said some things I wish I wouldn’t have.
        Saying it takes two to tango? I don’t know if I believe that in these situations. That’s like saying it takes two to tango when someone has been mugged, raped, robbed, in a car accident, etc. Sometimes people ARE victims and from what I’ve read, these predators LOVE to take someone strong down as much as they love to prey on vulnerabilities. EVERY one has vulnerabilities and to blame your vulnerabilities for what happened is like blaming the other woman for your husband’s affair.
        THEY are the evil ones. THEY are the perpetrators. THEY are the ones who knew what was going on, not us. AM I to blame because I was naive and didn’t KNOW about these creatures? I DID voice my concerns. I did try to advocate for myself. If I would have known how bad the possible out come could be, I would have dumped his sorry a**, FOR GOOD, a long time ago. It just was not black and white. Yes, he was emotionally abusive but I didn’t know thats what it was. Yes, he ignored my needs and desires but not all the time and not in an obvious, cut and dry way.

        A friend from LF told me SO much from her spathcapade that was IN YOUR FACE abusive. I wish spathtardx would have done just one of the things her ex did because I would have ended it pronto. He didn’t cheat on me that I know of. Didn’t steal from me. Now, I may have been being groomed for the big set up down the road or used as a temporary “fix” to keep him company, entertained, etc…..I don’t KNOW!!!!!

        • Dorothy, the reason why different spaths seem different to different people, is because they will only go so far as we let them. They test our boundaries and then they tailor the abuse specifically toward those boundaries.

          It’s like Jerry Sandusky probably seemed very different to his child victims, compared to his fellow coaches, the players or his wife. Each person gets a mirror to view themselves and their values. Sandusky even wrote that in his book, “… I thrived on testing the limits of others and I enjoyed taking chances in danger.” He tested boundaries and pushed right up to that limit. Obviously, he ended up exceeding those limits too.

          My exspath never showed his pedophile nature to me but there were tells. He did show some perverted behavior but then his “good” side made me overlook it. He also would work and contribute, but he made sure that the expenses always exceeded what he contributed. In the end, what he contributed was meant to go into my house and then he intended to inherit it. It was a rude awakening for him when his investment and the exit strategy didn’t go as planned. Though he skated with a free helicopter.

          As far as boundaries, it’s interesting that I told him from the very beginning that I would NEVER live in a house without a dishwasher. And that dishwasher was top priority when it broke down. He even had an extra motor sitting in storage.

          I was talking to my sis (the good one) and she told me that her boundary was her faith. She told her husband that she would NEVER allow him to separate her from God. So her husband (who is emotionally abusive) never interferes with her church attendance or raising the kids Catholic. But he makes her live on emotional breadcrumbs.

          I laughed when I told her, “Your religion was like my dishwasher!”

          She didn’t laugh. I think she doesn’t get it. It’s all about where you draw that line in the sand. Our line needs to be drawn firmly around being respected and loved at all times. No abuse is tolerable. Because any little crack in your boundaries will be used against you by an abuser.

          • Skylar, I just kept giving him and us another chance. I figured, I’m not perfect, he’s not perfect……..AND, he always forgave me, making a point of saying that he forgives because it could be him someday who messes up. Like when I was still drinking, I got s-faced a couple times and did stupid annoying things like staying up late listening to music when he had to work the next day or drunk dialing and talking till all hours on the phone. He just didn’t seem to care for the most part. NOW I wonder if the reason he didn’t care was because he really didn’t CARE…………like about me, the relationshit, etc.
            But, there were times he really DID seem very genuine….like even now it STILL seems genuine when I think back on it. We were in a fight and I left in a blizzard and my car went off the road a little……back, back, country roads. He called me on my cell phone and was in tears because he didn’t know where I was and it was pouring down snow. IDK………I just really don’t know.

            The dishwasher is hysterical! I should have told Spathx that I just couldn’t be in a relationship with a man who didn’t want to please me sexually. BUT, I KNOW he knew I wanted more from him that way and he sure wasn’t going to be bothered. It seemed with him that the more I expressed what I absolutely wanted the more determined he was not to give it to me. SERIOUSLY!

          • Hi Sky,

            I so love your writing – you have a beautiful calm detachment, which I aspire too. I hope when you are not busy doing life and being here you are in the process of writing a book?

            You write – ‘Each person gets a mirror to view themselves and their values’.

            I think I know what you mean here but am trying to be completely certain as I can be. Does this mean our brand of abuse/attack was specific to our presonalities/weakness. Did we in fact witness our own dark side?

            I can accept this to a certain extent but they are way too many commonalities of peoples experience with the p’s.

            If what we saw/participated in was a reflection of our selves then that it even more alarming and needs to be purged and erased. I had thought the ‘mirror’ in this case was truly distorted by their pathology?

          • MyOwnSavior,
            thank you for the complement.

            Yes, the mirror is central to how the spath cons us. They pretend to be like us and have the same values. After we broke up, I went to talk to some of his minions. They told me things about him that revealed who THEY are. Because if the spath was open about his extracurricular activities with them, it meant that they are the same way. They approved of raping children or else the spath wouldn’t have told them and kept being friends with them afterwards. But the spath didn’t tell them about his murders because that would have driven them away, probably. He did tell some people — the really dumb minions — who couldn’t imagine that he might turn on them and kill them too.

            The mirroring doesn’t end there. Spaths will try to make us take more responsibility than is in our power. When we’re left holding the bag, the spath makes us look in the mirror again and we see ourselves powerless. That was the intent of the roller coaster ride.

  2. My spath said the same thing – he said something like, “you think I am one thing, and I am something else”. It was so early on in the relationshit, I had no idea what he was talking about.

    Anyway, we learn a bit about the world, and we learn a lot about ourselves through this experience.

    I have met a number of men since my spath experience, and I am on hyper alert. I search out red flags and run when I see one. I have no tolerance any more my own denial of unhealthy behaviors.

    Forever changed, for the better I think.

    • CallmeAthena, Spathxtard also used to say……”you are wrong about me Dorothy”. I thought he meant that my doubts and endless questioning implied that I thought he was bad but he was really true blue. Now I wonder if it was another “tell”, as in……….he was really meaning that You are wrong about me Dorothy because you have NO CLUE who or what i really am.???

      • Hi Jaap,
        they reveal things early on because they are testing your boundaries — or lack of. They must do this before they can mirror you and mirror your values. Unless we are familiar with the tactic, we have no idea that this is happening. Normal people want to be known, we don’t hide. We don’t imagine that others are just the opposite.

  3. And truthy, to add on to your analogy about how people support losses….losses of a child, losses of whatever kind, they do not include the “loss” of your son the killer. The pain and the shame of such a loss is overwhelming. Even after that I tried to hang on to my son, by staying in denial about what he was. It was only him trying to have me killed that set my NC in concrete, but that too was shocking to me, and painful.

    But we must realize that if someone will hurt someone else (and be proud of it no less) they are capable of hurting you as well. so if someone hurts others, they WILL hurt you. Acceptance of that truth is what keeps me going with NC.

  4. Sky, thank you for the answering MyOwnSaviour’s questions – grasping the concepts is one HECK of a challenge for me, especially since I don’t have a clear understanding of my experiences.

    With regard to boundaries, I always believed that boundaries were for “mean” people as a form of control and dismissal. I did not have any understanding of personal boundaries, at all, and that includes boundaries for myself.

    A friend who is currently in a terrible Life Crisis had a recent experience with someone that showed up to her door asking to “borrow” a small amount of money. The friend that I will call, “Ingrid,” gave her neighbor a small amount of cash – the neighbor had given a sad, sad story of how her phone had been shut off and that her house was in foreclosure and she needed to use Ingrid’s phone to call her boss. Okay……Ingrid has been jobless for about 7 weeks and has had no means to pay her own bills, but she “had” to “help” her neighbor. As she continued her story, I began to feel my hackles rise because the neighbor took the money EVEN though Ingrid was unemployed while she (the neighbor) had a full-time job, no mortgage/rent payment, and was somehow unable to pay her phone bill. The neighbor returned, in tears, having “run out of gas.” Of course, Ingrid was compelled to give this distressed neighbor gasoline, as well. The neighbor gave Ingrid certain details, and actually stopped talking to allow Ingrid to build a story around the few details so that she (Ingrid) would respond with her EMOTIONS, and respond QUICKLY.

    After listening to this incredible tale of drama/trauma and a compulsion to help someone “in need,” it became glaringly clear that the neighbor had played Ingrid like a banjo. I reviewed all of the details of this encounter and not one word of it made any sense to me, at all. How someone without a rent or mortgage payment with a full-time position could NOT pay a phone bill was the first, and most vivid “red flag.” Then, it was the pity ploy – the neighbor was already aware of Ingrid’s emotional state from Ingrid’s own mouth – PITY for the neighbor’s plight played upon Ingrid’s emotions, immediately. The crying stopped as if it had never even begun as soon as Ingrid offered to provide gasoline for the neighbor’s car.

    To put this whole thing into perspective with regard to boundaries and predators, Ingrid was raised in a horribly abusive environment and has a deep and dark shame-core, just like I do. It is THIS core-issue that causes both of us to “feel” hyper-empathetic for other human beings: if I can just (JUST) help someone or SAVE someone, that effort will be validated and I will finally be a “good” person.

    For whatever reason, Ingrid’s neighbor was able to detect Ingrid’s desire to make things right for others, and exploited it without missing a beat. Boundaries were NEVER taught or learned, because shame-core adults were, as children, INvalidated, UNworthy, UNdeserving, and utterly dismissed as worthless and loathesome. So, boundaries for ourselves are an added benefit of recovery along with setting boundaries for others. I work very hard to maintain boundaries for myself – to NOT succumb to the emotional responses and pity-ploys. By doing this, I’m also setting boundaries for others that even the most pitiful stories will not cause me to respond with an immediate, impulsive, and thoroughly emotional response. This is NEW territory for me, and very much out of my “comfort zone.”

    Hopefully, the correlation between personal boundaries and predatory exploitation can be accepted. I’m working on this, every day, and it’s a challenge. Ingrid asked the always-pointed question, “Doesn’t separating the emotions from the facts make US like THEM?” The answer is a screaming, “NO!” We do not have an intent to exploit, while they do. Removing the emotions from the equation allows for an objective review of the facts, only. When emotions run hot, the facts are typically ignored, especially for those of us with a deep shame-core to manage.

    • Truth,

      There is a good article about being an overactive empath here – http://www.psychicbutsane.com/empathy/is-overactive-empathy-ruining-your-life

      Take what you will of it but it makes interesting reading IMO

      I quited liked the diagrams and the analogy about being a colander -absorbing other people’s emotions. I could really relate to this and have become very aware of other peoples affect on me as a result. There are some interesting articles on the site which may be of interest.

      • I just went to the website linked by Myownsaviour. Sometimes, you read something just when you need it and it seems that I needed this right now.
        At the bottom of the article, was a link to another article about closing down your empathy leaks. That was very helpful to me too.
        http://annasayce.com/how-to-turn-off-overactive-empathy/

        If you’re out there reading this, thank you, Myownsavior,. And thanks to the empathetic blogger Anna Sayce.

  5. CallMeAthena, predators will “tip their hand,” at some point. I keep my eyes and ears open, these days, for all manners of predator: man, woman, child……anyone can be a human predator, and the onus is upon MY shoulders to watch and observe, now that I am aware that human predators actually exist.

    No, I don’t “like” this business of being hypervigilant, one iota. It is way, way out of my “comfort zone,” but my experiences with the exspath were a Life Lesson that has its roots in my own dysfunction. I’m not suggesting that the exspath is NOT a predator and that he deserves anything better than a lengthy prison sentence – oh,no. He is a very “bad” man and very dangerous predator that has been able to avoid all consequences. But, my vulnerabilities, core-issues, strengths, and values were all an open book for him and for others to either appreciate OR exploit. “The Lesson” has been that I need to sort out my core-issues so that I will never, ever, EVER be perceived as an easy target, again.

    • To clarify about the “Life Lesson:” I hate it. I really do. I am not mandated to “like” the lesson. I have a choice to either accept the facts and do the work, or not. But, once I made the decision that I was going to focus upon recovery instead of what the exspath did to me, “acceptance” became an ongoing challenge. 😉

  6. I am watching a “thriller” movie that I taped on digital tv, called “Killing me Softly”. Honestly it’s a bad movie (lol) for several reasons. But I suspect the script was written by a psychopathic mind (book by Nicci French, a couple who write “psychological thrillers” as a team).

    It’s about a woman who’s in a safe relationship, but then meets Adam, a mountain climber who’s regarded a hero for saving people during a fatal mountain climbing accident in which his fiance died. There’s an instant animal like sexual attraction and she starts a rough, passionate affair with him, where he challenges her sexually (like asking her to go go home without her panties). She leaves her boyfriend with whom she lived and moves in with Adam. She gets robbed one day on broad daylight on the street while meeting up with a friend, and Adam happens to pass by “by accident” and witness it. He instantly races after the mugger and almost kills the thief by violently shoving his head against the glass door of a cellphone booth and once the thief is unconscious he smashes the door several times against the head (stuck between the door and the step of the phone booth). He claims to have gone overboard because of his love for her and how something like that should “never” happen to that anymore. Then he promptly asks her to marry him (couple of weeks in the relation) and she agrees. They marry in what he claims to be his native church far away in the countryside. As for their honeymoon: she has to change clothes behind the church in hiker gear and off he goes taking her on a trek (without giving her any good and proper hiking lesson). All day she ends up hiking a mountain, without him being anywhere in sight (faster pace), and by nightfall she reaches a cabin where he’s got candles burning and welcomes her with glasses of champagne. Oh, and of course there’s the talk of everyone having a missing half, and she’s his missing half. The wedding night he binds a silk scarf around her neck to control her breathing during the sex. (I guess you’re starting to get the picture: drama, supposed emotional and violent responses because he “loves her so much”, etc)

    But then she starts to receive letters and mysterious information. A woman claims she was raped by Adam, but wants to make money out of the story (protagonist is some sort of reporter). He calls the other woman nuts of course and “why doesn’t she simply trust him”, though he never volunteers his schedule or plans with her and she knows nothing of his past except what is written in the book about his heroism during the mountain accident. She finds letters about a woman who’s gone missing 8 months before that. The woman was married, but loved mountain climbing with Adam. But the woman’s husband demanded her to choose between her marriage our mountaineering, and she chose her marriage. On the day she was to return to her husband she disappeared though. When she listens to this story told by the mother she goes through the woman’s picture book and finds a picture of the woman standing naked besides a statue, exactly the same spot where she had to change her clothes on her wedding day behind the wayward church and Adam took a similar picture of her naked in front of the statue. She confronts Adam about the missing woman, and he binds her on the kitchen island with ropes, going on about trust and asking her why she’s doing this: “Does she want to be punished?” (ah poor Adam)

    She manages escape and goes to the police station to whom she related the whole story, but she does not have the letters and faxes anymore about the other women (so no evidence). And then she’s shown that Adam sits in the other room (through a one way mirror), who voluntarily came to the police station in distress about his missing wife (ah poor Adam). The detective agrees that Adam shows behaviour that indicates he might have issues with violence and is impulsive, but a murderer?

    She teams up with Adam’s sister to look for proof, suspecting that the missing woman lies buried behind the church. She does find the corpse of the woman, but then it turns out that it’s all been the sister’s doing who’s madly in love with her brother (with whom she once had sex with… ok incest on top of it) and didn’t want any other woman to have him and tries to kill the protagonist too of course.

    Poor Misunderstood and Mistrusted Adam comes right on time to save the day, who dismissed the past with his sister as adolescence foolishness. When his sister then tries to kill him, the protagonist shoots the sister with a flare gun. Adam is taken away by the police but found innocent. At least the protagonist wises up SOMEWHAT by leaving him. They meet by chance again 2 years later, staring at each other, wondering what might have been if she would have just trusted him.

    So, there we get to see the typical script of a psychopathic with all his drama, control, abusive behaviour, trauma bonding and even hooking up with women following the same script all the time, but it wasn’t him who’s the bad guy… he was just so very much in love with her and she failed him by not trusting him. It was his mad sister who was the psychopath (sarcastic tone). Gag!

    • Jill,
      that is so funny because the story is an obvious version of the Greek myth of Cupid and Psyche.
      http://www.greeka.com/greece-myths/eros-psyche.htm

      In Cupid and Psyche, it’s Cupid’s mother, Venus, who sets him up to trick the girl. I think there are stories indicating that the god and goddess had – at one time – an incestuous relationship. But then, what gods don’t? In that story, Cupid really does fall in love with Psyche so the movie had to follow that line as well.

      Hiking up the mountain while her husband is nowhere in sight, is like the when Psyche is taken aloft by the Zephyr wind to a mountain castle and her husband is never there except at night, when it’s too dark to see him.

      The mysterious information is like the rumors that Psyche’s sisters spread in order to make her doubt her husband. When she goes to the police and Adam is already there, watching her, corresponds to Psyche’s attempt to find out more but gets caught by Cupid when she spills the hot oil on him.

      The movie, more than the myth, clarifies that the story is about narcissists, shame, envy and poor boundaries. I wonder what other patterns we could find in the story of Cupid and Psyche.

  7. Jill I just read a history book about Samuel Peyps whose famous diaries were published and who was a government official in King Charles and King James (charles brother) in England…a man named John Scott who was a hhighwayman and obvioulsy a psychopath targets Samuel and makes up, along with several others a case of treason against Samuel and almost gets him executed…over many years and trials, Samuel traces the history of this John Scott who is a total fake and fraud…and the authors of the story state that Scott was without conscience….he kept on with his “grand plans” and everytime they failed he blamed someone else of course…the book is a perfect example of a psychopath

    The book is named “Traitor to the Crown, The untold story of the Popish Plot and the conspiracy against Samuel Pepys” by James and Ben Long.

    I have never read ANY thing that showed how a psychopath works as good as this book, though of course the authors didn’t apparently know the term for such a man, but their biography of Scott is excellent.

    Literature and history are full of examples of psychopaths and their behaviors which cost millions and millions of lives in some cases.

    • In every tale of mythology and history, there are examples of psychopathology. There are. The Bible is full of them, and mythology goes into greater discussion of them, I think, particularly ancient Greek and Roman mythologies.

      Psychopathology, in my most humble opinion, is part of the “Human Condition.” It has always existed, and it will forever exist, for whatever reason. I’ve come to the point in my healing and recovery that I don’t need to know WHY, anymore – I know that they exist, what their behaviors are, and how my own personal issues need to be protected to avoid them.

      Knowing that psychopaths are, have been, and always will be, and that their existence is documented in spoken history, as well as written history, offers me a degree of comfort – I cannot do a single thing about their existence. I can’t prevent them from “being,” nor can I wish them away. They are what they are, and that’s all there is to it. But, the most amazing (and, liberating) aspect has been acceptance of this fact. I may not “like” this fact, but the acceptance of it has made my “job” a bit simpler.

      We don’t live in “Their Universe,” nor would we want to. For each one of these creatures, an individual universe exists where they, alone and by themselves, are the ONLY resident. Every other human being that they come into contact with has only one value – how they can be used and/or abused. Period. Exploitation of other human beings is their only interest. Their only goal. Whether it’s attention, money, s-e-x, social status, fame, cars, or anything else, these are the only “things” that they want from us. They cannot – can not – make human connections, on any level. They do not have the ability to “love,” in the sense that we do – “love” is just a word to them, even if they “love” asparagus with hollandaise sauce! They do not have the ability to feel compassion, empathy, conscience, or remorse, and this is evident in their behaviors towards others.

      Indeed, history, legends, and mythologies are full of examples of psychopathology. And, these stories, however we wish to envision them, are meant to teach us lessons about these predators. We used to read stories to our children to teach them to watch out for strangers, to question the agendas of others, and to trust in our own intuition to make decisions. But, even with those stories and “lessons,” we still endure these creatures until we suffer at their hands.

      REALLY good discussion, here.

      • Strict aside, here – OxD has taught me the value of observation, and this is something that I would like to pass along about spaths and ppaths that we are NOT romantically involved with. These people come into our lives in the forms of supervisors, teachers, clergy, “best” friends, etc., and it is an imperative to accept this: what we observe them doing to other people, we can guarantee that they’re doing the same things to us.

        If someone routinely talks about other people behind their backs, we can bet our farms that they’re doing the same things to us, no matter HOW “special” they have made us feel. SO…….OxD’s Rule Of Observation has become priceless to me in these years past. 🙂

        • Thanks, Truthy….it wasn’t original by any means, but I too WATCH others to see what they are.

          People will SHOW us what they are and we need to BELIEVE THEM when they do. Not every toxic person is a total psychopath, and it isn’t a matter of “if they’re not a TOTAL psychopath then maybe the relationship can be saved”—any person who does not have a GOOD moral compass, a reliable compass, those people are not productive to our lives. We may have to because of circumstances, like our job, “put up” with a toxic person to one extent or another, and I’ve worked with some real doozies. LOL But I have also left jobs because of them and found other employment, but with my degree in nursing I never went a day without a job when I wanted one, so I had that choice, but sometimes people don’t have that choice and can’t quit.

          In our PERSONAL life and our EMOTIONAL life we need to not get attached to these people before we know what and who they really are. I am a sucker for the love bomb, but you know, much less so now because I no longer GIVE my trust to anyone, they must earn it.

  8. This whole article is very good. It shows that the psychopath capitalizes on our own desires, once he or she establishes what those desires are.. We can allow him or her to sell us a bill of goods or a MacGuffin, or better yet they will wait until we slip and reveal what is meaningful, or important to us, and use that against us. It is obvious that the best course of action is just don’t offer and don’t tell. Keeping things close to your vest as far as what matters to you is the same as “not feeding the psychopath with information that can and will be used against you, as leverage to bring you down.” Which oddly enough empowers them.. This whole thing reminds me of corrupt politics on a human level.. where their means justifies the extorted end. What they don’t like is questioning their position or revealing information about themselves, ( it makes them uncomfortable) as their strategy is to remain anonymous until they are ready to strike,
    They prefer to lurk like an unseen enemy with every option open waiting for their moment to strike the unwary prey. .

  9. Yes Truth speak, its good to see the weaknesses of these perpetrators exposed, that they try so desperately to hide. Its kind of like seeing Toto, the little dog that pulled back the curtain exposing the controlling man that was putting on the facade as the “Great and Powerful Oz,” when he was merely a man.
    ” Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain!” was his command as he knew his cover was being exposed. See how quickly he was reduced to be seen as who he really was.

    There is a book Ive read called a Cry for Justice http://www.amazon.com/Cry-Justice-Domestic-Abuse-Church/dp/1879737914/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1408206883&sr=8-1&keywords=a+cry+for+justice#customerReviews written by Jeff Crippen.. The book is great, and reviews are good to read to see how hard hitting the book is against mainstream Christianity on the subject of covert and overt spousal abuse. . He has made many audio sermons against all forms of abuse in marriages, here’s one about weapons in the abusers arsenal http://www.sermonaudio.com/sermoninfo.asp?SID=810101029387 He is a strong advocate for the abused partner in these situations to get free, and away from their abusers. He knows that these types practice deceit, and do not change. ( male or female) He also has a very helpful website to support the victim in these situations so they know that they are not alone. called Crying out for Justice. http://cryingoutforjustice.com This is significant in light of the fact that he is a Christian pastor going against the tide of “Blind Guides” in the evangelical churches that want to see the victim continue in the abuse to “Save the institution of Marriage, to the demise of the oppressed flock.
    And the word institution was intentional there.
    He is also good at exposing all types of proxy people in society that try to shuttle the victim back to the spath abuser. He is hard hitting on the abuser, and the proxies that serve the abuser.
    His site has lots of empowering blogs that help clear the fog that is left in the minds of the victim using the bible as his source! Certainly worth some ones look if they are disappointed with the churches response to their plight with their abuser. ( and who isn’t these days? )

    • Very helpful information, Frontlinegirl. Any source of genuine validation for victims is a boon, especially if the religious / spiritual community is actively involved. Sadly, and most typically, religious / spiritual communities often dismiss the abuse, outright, blame the victims, and espouse forgiveness and redemption with the absolute and firm belief that an abuser “can change” if they simply accept the doctrines and rebuke evil. In th 20 years that I have been involved with domestic violence and abuse and the hundreds of abusers that have come and gone, two (literally two) actually involved themselves in therapy and altered their behaviors. The rest? Well, the rest were addicted to the sense of power that they got when they terrorized their victims. Those people are beyond redemption and I was once declared an emissary of Satan because I supported the victim and said that the abuser was NEVER going to stop.

      It’s problematic, at the very least. UGH

      • Yes, they do blame the victim, due to their ignorance or judgmental thinking, or even perhaps a form of denial to ultimately support their own agenda to dominate someone in their own life. they just don’t want to come to terms that a marriage could be plagued with something as covertly sinister as the victim describes. So we must trust the spirit that God puts within us- to validate our pain, until we can connect with other supporting sources.
        Jeff Crippen has been instrumental in my case, as my spath would ally with the ” Blind Guides” in my church,( the proxied religious group) to try to derail my inner knowledge of the truth with their twisted, or inapplicable scriptures to my situation. I cant help but to think that some of these people might also have a problem thinking that a relationship could actually be based on mutual respect and love as well as support for the other spouse in every area of their lives.
        They must instead think they need to bring in manipulative and deceptive lies to keep that other spouse hoodwinked to them, come what may, so that they never think to escape the torture. How blind can they be.

        • Frontlinegirl, people can be very, very blind – even people who have strong understanding of writings, doctrines, scriptural meaning, etc. The institutions that systematically perpetuate abuse in the name of whatever deity it is that they espouse target the most vulnerable people. The needy. The traumatized. The abandoned. The dismissed and invalidated. These people (of which I’m one) NEED and they need from other human beings. No matter how strong or genuine their faith in their God might be, they do not have the ability or training to tap into themselves for validation, acceptance, etc. Even though they might “know” that God accepts them and loves them, they NEED to be validated and to have that belief validated by other human beings. This is the history of mankind, as a species, not as a demograph.

          Look at Jonestown, Sung Yeung Moon, David Koresh, and others who used spiritual abuse as a means to their own ends. Even before morals and ethics, spiritual beliefs are more important than anything else. What’s the first thing that an invading nation does to the vanquished? They take away, abolish, or criminalize the former religion, religious practices, and spiritual rituals.

          So…….the blindness is kind of something that I identify with. I lost everything because I believed that someone else shared similar beliefs and genuine faith just as I did. That was the first in-road, alongside the love-bombing. Hit me with the love-bomb and spiritual commonality, and I was a pushover as a target.

          • To clarify the targeting of the needy – the predators tell these people what the people in need have clearly demonstrated that they were in need of. Acceptance. Approval. Unconditional love. Validation. Self-worth. All of these things can be seemingly unattainable within our own selves if we have experienced prolonged trauma, of any sort. Childhood abuse, neglect, abandonment, or adult abuse, neglect, and abandonment – it doesn’t matter when the trauma was inflicted, but how the needy clearly indicate their needs (either by word or behaviors), and look for someone else to provide them.

            The ones who are not the actual mastermind predators BUT acquiesce to the demands and requirements of the mastermind/leader do so because they, too, are needy and the threat of being shunned, expelled, or worse appears to be an unsurvivable consequence if they dare – literally dare – to stand in defiance of the mastermind/leader.

            It’s a very interesting sociological study, and it is absolutely NOTHING new to mankind as a group behavior.

          • Quoting Truthspeak: “The ones who are not the actual mastermind predators BUT acquiesce to the demands and requirements of the mastermind/leader do so because they, too, are needy and the threat of being shunned, expelled, or worse appears to be an unsurvivable consequence if they dare – literally dare – to stand in defiance of the mastermind/leader.” ) This is very true. The “mastermind” knows how to inflict pain for the slightest infraction for non-compliance.
            So tell me Truthy, and you will have to forgive me for my curiosity, but this is the way God wired me.( I dig for truth).- The ones the mastermind manages to manipulate, he sees their need to be accepted, as a weakness to be exploited right? that is how he gets them to go along with his plan. So what if anything is the weaknesses of the mastermind? Probably a loaded question, but I appreciate any added insight.

        • Frontline girl, There are both “wolves in sheep’s clothing” in all organizations and churches and there are also people who are just BLIND and follow the lead of these wolves, though their intentions are not bad, they are just blind.

          None the less, it is up to us to get out of these situations and not become blind ourselves.

          Whether it is religion or politics it doesn’t matter if the leader is a wolf there will be sheep that will follow him or her into awful things. Look at the Middle East right now…ruled by HATE in the name of “god” doing things that make Nazi Germany look like Disneyland.

          Sometimes the trials we suffer by being duped by these people can lead us to OPEN OUR OWN EYES and see that God does not intend for us to suffer. He may allow suffering in the world, but he intends for us to live a joyful life and be good to others, but I don’t find a scripture that says BE A DOOR MAT. In fact, Jesus and Paul both said if your brother offend thee, speak to him, if he won’t listen, take witnesses, if he still won’t listen, take it to the church (community) and if he still won’t listen TREAT HIM AS A HEATHEN, not even to eat with him. Tjhat right there is a good description of NO CONTACT.

          The “turn the other cheek” verse has been used to make people stand and get beaten up, and that’s not in my opinion what it means. If someone slaps us, don’t hit back and make a big deal out of it and make a BIG fight, but on the other hand, you can THEN turn and walk away, not standing there for another slap. just MHO

  10. Frontline girl, many “religious” people who are WOLVES IN SHEEP’S CLOTHING practice all kinds of abuse. It was so in the time of Jesus and it is so NOW. Just as the ISIS is beheading people who don’t believe like they do, and calling it “God’s will” James Town, and all the other religious zealots who have persecuted others for “religious” reasons are themselves ABUSERS and you know I have a feeling that someday they will meet the God they choose to “obey” and find out that HE DID NOT APPROVE OF WHAT THEY DID, and He is a JUST GOD and they will not appreciate the consequences of what they did to hurt others.

    I too was fed abuse in the name of Godliness but fortunately I got out of that rut and no longer subscribe to that. But I do have a firmer and better relationship with God than ever before…I just don’t swallow abuse in His name any longer.

    • Thanks for the clarity Oxdrover and Truthspeak. Its all wrapped up in the motive or intention of the heart with people. Are they behaving without guile and duplicity, or are they out to manipulate and control others? As Jesus said the heart is deceitfully wicked, who can know it?
      He also added you will know them by their fruits. A bad tree cannot produce good fruit, and a good tree wont produce bad fruit.
      I have always believed in God,- and my spath knew that, and used that knowledge( of course) in his weapons arsenal.
      You guys have been very helpful and I wish we could have all taken courses on “how to avoid being prey to a spath,” before we fell into the traps that they set for us. But maybe by having this site here, and getting the word out to the people that come to visit, they will learn how to avoid becoming their next victim.

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