I read article below the other day and boy is it my Gaslighter to a "T". It can be a wake up call to Victims of abuse to read articles about Domestic Violence. You question your sanity. I have heard if you question your sanity then you have nothing to worry about. It is those that don't question they're insanity that are the troublemakers!
I was posed a question today by Terry, he asked, "If you had to choose between R knowing where we live or random annoying text/voice mails, which would you choose?"
That is a no brainer! As annoying, pitiful, and numerous as they are, I can deal with the texts. I can not cope with the thought of him knowing where we live. So, my Friends once again since the topic looks like it will be a hot bed of discussion next Tuesday (Status hearing~ just to see if we are complying or done with tasks asked by the court to do). My attorney differently stands behind my privacy on the subject. I am praying and asking for anyone out here in blog land to please pray for us. Apparently the girls have shared with a court official they are equally concerned that R will find out where we are.
I want this to be finalized so badly. I have the patience of a 18 month old. And I want what I want now! STOMP! STOMPING MY FEET! WAH! Now I would like it finalized for my own reason of not wanting R to keep calling me his wife. I know he swore "Till death do we part" Even that sends shivers down my neck. June would have been our 20 year anniversary, technically, I reckon it still counts since we are still married. SAD FACE!
I have learned that sadly the relationship between myself and my Mother in law is gone. Blood is thicker, but in this case she is worried he will find out and since he knows where she lives she will not speak poorly of her son. At the same time I can't help but wonder why she can not stand up for her Grandkids. It makes me sad.
Of course even though my brain is trying to stay level headed my stomach is tied up in knots for more then just court jitters. It is always something! But, it's not boring that's for sure!
Again, I hate to be a broken record, but if you are in a violent, mental or verbal abuse situation PLEASE GET OUT! If you can not do it alone, then please share with someone you trust and ask for help to leave or to get him/her out! Don't wait before it's too late. Don't wait until you have enough money. Or a job. There are places that WILL help you! Don't be afraid to call the police if need be, leave a paper trail. Do not allow your abuser to keep getting away with his/her antics or control!
Be safe my Friend,
**I don't agree with all of his off hand comments or some of the language but he has great sources and seems to be knowledgeable on the subject of NARC's and Psychopaths. And my abuser does not take drugs or alcohol (in my opinion he is just nuts)**
Obsession ... the
Let me begin by saying that this is a very difficult topic to handle in a worldwide forum. No matter what I write, my words will anger someone, frighten someone else and inspire yet others. Hopefully, I will at least get my readers to think seriously about their own values. For instance, what do you think about this as a solution to the psychopathy problem? Only a fool tries to please everyone...and I am no fool!Psychopathy is usually associated with criminal and/or amoral behavior, especially with "career criminals", those who typically engage in more than one type of crime and have been doing so for a long time. It seems to be the foundation of a career criminal's personality upon which all the the destructive, antisocial behavior is built. Immediately, someone will jump up and yell out that criminality is culturally defined. That is true. The continuum of acceptable-unacceptable behavior varies widely across cultures. However, there are some behaviors -- murder for example, which are widely held to be unacceptable (I know Margaret Mead deserves a citation here, but I forget out of which book I learned the fact! Sorry, Margaret.). Telling lies may be considered impolite but excusable one place, while seen as a major crime elsewhere. For our purposes here, I will focus my attention on the perceptions of western cultures, particularly those of the USA and Germany, as I am most familiar with them.
Criminals are typically very "street smart". So one clue of psychopathy is if the person boasts about being able to outwit others. It shows something of the way he or she operates on a daily basis. Another clue is what is called the "duping delight" (Hare, 1993). The person will try to trick people somehow, or maneuver people into believing strange or outrageous things, making up stories just for the fun of putting something over on someone. There will be no necessity to lie, but the lie is told nonetheless, just to see if he or she can get away with it. If they do get away with it, it feeds their narcissistic belief that others are stupid and that they are superior.
In my opinion, the psychopath represents humanity gone haywire. For this reason, I do not wish to handle the topic of the psychopath's presence in society like other behavioral writers do. I don't intend wasting any time on efforts to rehabilitate them (for instance, Wong & Hare, 1998-2005). My intent here is not as academic as it is political; I wish to educate and warn you the reader of some of the more common signs that the person in question -- usually a male -- is someone you should detach from...and quickly!
The sooner you can detect a troublesome person, the better off you will be. One quick check is your placement of him or her on the "asshole scale". Now remember, not every jerk or idiot is necessarily psychotic! However, psychopaths do represent an extreme form of the "asshole" personality type, they've just learned to conceal it most of the time and appear to be "nice, normal, charming" people. Many are developmentally stuck in their early years, still fighting the battles of authority and parental control over them! They must get their way or they'll make trouble of some sort.
As for occupations, these can hold some predictive information about the person. For one, if they're unemployed -- run like hell!!! Otherwise, considering the difficulty psychopaths show in normal social relationships, they tend to gravitate toward jobs that let them work with things, requiring a limited amount of human contact. Such occupations include auto mechanic, carpenter, truck driver and construction work, etc. Now I'm not saying that your plumber is necessarily a psychopath; psychos are found in all occupations. I'm just saying that the probability of finding one increases in jobs that revolve around things rather than people. They also gravitate toward positions of power, ie politics, school principal, psychotherapist, peace officer, etc.
As for drug usage, psychopaths love alcohol and methamphetamine (check out this DEA web page!). I suspect the "meth" helps give them the excitement they crave; gaining little or no security or comfort from the past, they must constantly seek excitement in the now. They get bored easily. I am told that the meth also enhances sexual behavior -- which is a strong reinforcer for continued drug usage. It can really make them think some bizarre thoughts, though. Habitual users of meth will likely have dental problems at an early age. So, if someone is only, say 50, and has no teeth left it's a good possibility that the person is a methamphetamine abuser. Now whether he or she is also a psychopath remains to be determined.
Another red flag is whether the person finished High School or not. This is significant, since only a small percentage of "dropouts" really do well in life. If the person you're dating claims to have graduated, ask from which school -- and quietly verify it. If you find out he or she did not finish school, find out why. Did she get pregnant? Was he expelled for carrying a semiautomatic weapon in the hallway? The reason someone leaves school before finishing will tell you something of his or her character.
Once a woman marries a psycho, it is far too late. By then, he'll know way too much about her life. So, when she eventually does him this huge injustice (like saying "no" to any of his selfish desires or confronting him about his flagrant immaturity), the big brat inside him gets all bent out of shape and he proceeds to "get her back for that", "teach her a lesson", and "let her know who's really the boss". It's as if the toddler can finally go one on one with Mom!
For this reason, I must inform you of "the one year rule". Don't go to a high level of commitment for at least a year, if you wish to be absolutely sure about him or her. Certainly don't get married too quickly! Even the best psychos will lose their masks within a year; it takes a lot of effort to keep up false appearances. This reminds me of what I once heard a woman scream at her psychopathic boyfriend: "I knew it wouldn't last two years!" Apparently, she has a personal rule not to marry someone before two years of relationship have gone by. Good girl! Another observation I can share with you is that several people I've talked to said that their boyfriends/husbands have a three month cycle. Once they forgive them and take them back, these men only maintain good behavior for three months at most. After that, they go back into their out-of-control/forgive-and-forget drama.
During that first year of relationship, many clues often go unnoticed. Conversely, it is necessary to evidence the presence of several signs, before coming to a "diagnosis" of him or her being a psychopath! It's reasonable to assume that as more and more signs and signals are observed, the more likely the diagnosis will be a fitting one. (There are, of course, official psychological tests already developed to diagnose psychopathy. More about them can be found here on Dr. Hare's website. I don't think any of them have an "asshole scale".) One dead give away is their parasitic lifestyle. If you're dealing with a psychopath, he or she may well ask you for money in some form soon in the friendship. Even if it's just a couple of bucks for gas, during those first few days you will probably be asked for something monetary. Of course, they sometimes have their own money.
Parenthetically, many consider themselves to be excellent musicians. These guys usually play the guitar but run out of material in about 15 minutes. They then start repeating what they've already played. They're all technique and no soul.
One simple clue is that the person may not adhere to common social customs. Manners may be lacking, the person gives the impression of being somewhat of a slob, he or she may seem unconcerned if ever late meeting you for something, and will rarely if ever apologize unless prompted. And if prompted, you can imagine the sincerity that will come with the apology! Sometimes, their personal deception style may have them over-apologizing. This shows insincerity, too.Time and time again, I've heard of -- and observed first hand -- family, religion, etiquette and morality being used to stick the mask of normalcy on the psychopathic face. You may be told you're just like family -- early on in the friendship! (Some people call this being "fast friends".) The person may even have a wife and kids! Or, more likely, an ex-wife and one kid, because by then it had become obvious that the relationship was going nowhere. He may boast about reading "the Bible" or actually be able to quote scripture. Yet, if someone has to tell you that he's moral, chances are he isn't! They tend to tell you positive things about themselves, rather than show you things through their behavior.Psychos typically rely on the frequency of words (they talk a lot), since they have difficulty empathizing with and using the intensity of emotion (see my frequency-intensity effect glossary item for more). These two observations together give the impression of them "knowing the notes but not the music" (ie Cleckley, 1988 and Hare, 1993). That of course means, that they know what to say so that normal people will develop a particular understanding, but they have no grasp of the emotional depth the others experience upon processing the words. It's also where you get the slick talkers from, the smooth-talking con men. The better grasp of the language the more successful a con can be. This alone can be a hint: if early on you feel confident in the other person, you might be being conned! This is significant since they always attempt to set up your perceptions of them right from the start, or at least early on. They can't play the relationship game very well, so they will try to quickly construct a favorable picture of themselves in your mind, using words. Now you may be justified in saying that everyone tries to give a good impression from the start, but I counter with the observation that you will be able to tell the difference when you see it...hopefully.
Still another red flag is that many of them will seem..."smirky". They have a smirky kind of grin in common and some seem to exhibit an ancy or jittery kind of "baseline energy output" in their movements. I think the smirk comes from the infantile quality of gratification their behavior gets reinforced with, while the apprehensive baseline energy output may be indicative of their perceived need to "deceive on their feet". They're always sensing that they have to size up and continuously monitor their current target. So, if you feel like he's keeping tabs on you, you might want to start worrying about how to get away from him. (See "The Loser" link, 3 paragraphs below.)
The psychopath may be jealous or seem paranoid. A classic clue is that the person will argue ad hominem to defend or rationalize his or her actions! Simply put, he or she will heatedly combat "the attacker" (be it a parent, friend, judge, society, etc) with name calling and finger-pointing of some kind, in order to get attention off his or her own behavior, or perhaps to gain sympathy for his or her perceived plight. It is also in this vein that the psychopath usually works on his or her intimates, constantly implying a lack of skills, looks, knowledge, etc, on the part of the other. The danger here (particularly for women since they tend to blame internally, while men tend to blame externally), is buying into his or her attempts to bring you down -- to "level the self esteem playing field" so that he or she can actually have a chance at ego enhancement! Other signs are either hypersensitivity to criticism or being totally oblivious to it. Usually the psychopath will be hypersensitive to criticism. They can dish it out but can't take it themselves. They get angry when confronted with their shortcomings. Otherwise, they may seem totally unaffected by criticism. This points to their utter lack of caring about the opinions of others. At any rate, the psychopath will likely be extreme in reaction; there's rarely a middle ground for them.
Psychopaths just love prowling the Internet! They are able to remain hidden behind the technology as they indulge in their hacking and cracking. They shrink from a fair fight; they will not engage unless they are 99.9% sure they will be victorious. Hence, we see the typical psychopath victimizing women and men of smaller stature. In other words, the common psychopath is just an immature little coward who feels a need to bully others in order to boost both his ego and, I believe, his pride in himself! ...I just don't understand why the movie industry makes such a big deal out of the "bad boy" character. Tarantino? Boooooo!
They can be quite clever and deceptive, yet you will get the clues if you're tuned into them. However, once you do sense trouble it is a whole different story how to get out of it, while maintaining your financial and emotional freedom. (I strongly suggest you also read this page on "The Loser". About two thirds of the way down the page there is a section on how to disengage from them.)If you do slip, miss the signals, etc, and end up totally screwed by one of these "Untermenschen", be sure to find a "psychopath recovery" discussion group for support. You will need to hear the stories of others, or you may just start sounding like a rambling paranoid idiot yourself! There are lots of such groups on the Internet, and two good ones are located at http://www.aftermath-surviving-psychopathy.org/, and http://www.psychopath-research.com. I personally am trying to start up a group on Facebook, called "Psychopath Recovery". You may also wish to look into an in-person support group in your local area. Womens' shelters are a good place to ask -- and not just for female victims, either. If your situation involves a stalking, see Proctor (2003).
What can be kept in mind is that the majority of the psychopath's interactions with you will, on some level, be geared to get -- not to give. Early in this one way "relationship" the target is simply information...you find yourself talking a lot while what you hear back from him or her sounds great, culturally speaking. Even when apparently giving, their motivation is to receive. With information, the result is that if you look you will see a lot of lies being told. Because of this, my best advice is to verify what you hear. At least the big stuff. For instance, a newly encountered psycho may wish to impress you by saying something like, "...then when I got out of the army, I got my MBA from Harvard...." These "facts" are easy to verify; if they don't check out, you'll know you have trouble. With material goods, this motive is exposed when they threaten to take back a gift or to even destroy something he or she made for you. The gift was not a gift at all. It was more like an unspoken bribe for you. Their expectation upon giving it, was that you selflessly continue to fulfill all of his or her emotional and material needs -- or else! Quite infantile, wouldn't you say? [By the way, that army/Harvard quote was taken from a reenactment on the FOX television series "America's Most Wanted" (amw.com), now on the Lifetime cable channel. Hi John!]That's another thing common in many psychopaths: their sense of entitlement is all out of whack. They feel inappropriately entitled to stuff -- typically your stuff! I find it's here that one gets a clear glimpse of their child-level perspective on life. A small child expects to get and get and get, while not being expected to give all that much toward the household maintenance. In adult relationships, this can lead to a man not having a job, expecting the woman to work and do whatever he wishes, whenever he wishes it. Such selfishness can -- and too often does -- lead to sexual assault and battery. In addition to that, this inflated sense of entitlement of theirs extends to punishing you any way they see fit, for however long they see fit, for any reason they find suitable. They enjoy exercising power over others. I believe they enjoy this as it is a direct opposite of what they probably experienced during their miserable childhoods.
I get the sense that the psychopath's ideal situation would be if he could imprison a wealthy person in a typical web of deceit and coercion. He could then slowly isolate her from her friends and family. Finally, he would settle down to suckle on the financial teat of his prize victim, undisturbed! Since psychopaths are so shockingly immature and selfish, they really have to hide this for as long as they can. For psychopaths, personality deception is long-practiced and their narcissistic resentment of the past runs deep. (In the coming years, I believe it will become painfully obvious that their sheer numbers are on the rise, possibly even gaining in their percentage of the general population.)
Curiously, it is indeed that larger-than-life picture of themselves that can give them away. As "the Quantum Future Group" states in their work What is a Psychopath?: "The psychopath is primarily distracted and impressed by his own grandiose self-representation, which often leads to him unwittingly telling people things that lead to his detection." (This quote is found almost a quarter of the way down the page.)
Another sign is a tendency toward passive aggression. This is how they can be aggressive and hateful, yet quietly get away with it. For example, he will see that your tire is almost flat, but will say nothing to you about it. You will then have trouble with it later and it would have been easy for him to help you out by saying something. Instead, it gives him the opportunity to be the hero as he leaps to your aid, thoroughly enjoying all of the excitement the occurance precipitates! I wouldn't be surprized to hear that he's the one who stuck that nail in your tire to begin with. I personally know of a psychopath committing arson - at one in the morning - in such a way that he was also the person to put the fire out and hence save everybody. Wow.
There are as many paths to deviancy as there are deviants. Along those paths, though, are similar events. For instance, while growing up, a person may experience continuous disappointments while never developing much of a sense of being able to control anything that happens to or around him or her. (Some such common events these days include the divorce of one's parents, being raised by grandparents or other relatives, domestic violence and the substance abuse of one's caretakers.) A victim mentality eventually emerges as a gestalt from the memory constructures (memcons), and this then shapes thought patterns to blame others for the bad things that happen to them in the future. Especially likely targets of blame are the person's intimates. Other popular targets include "the government" and other power-wielding groups and individuals.One major form of inoculation against psychopathy is effective parenting. A parent can be available to promote self discipline and to help the child cope with loss and other negative events outside his or her sphere of influence or control. It is unfortunate for us, that they never seem to realize the actual sources of their anger at the world -- ie, their former caretakers and the events which occurred during their formative years! Instead what happens, is that they come to see the world with a generalized, free-floating anger, just waiting to be elicited by anyone who steps into their line of sight, or displays aspects of their many prejudices. Those of you who can read German may wish to look at Barth (1996) in order to get a better idea of this phenomenon. Pay particular attention to the interview segment. If you would like to read the article now, follow this link.
This brings me to yet another clue on how to spot a psychopath: talking about the childhood years! Granted, some people may feel clumsy or on the spot when asked about their childhoods, but will usually talk about it anyway. However, if caught off guard, psychopaths will likely look down, hesitate, try to change the topic, or simply make something up. Furthermore, if they've read a web page like this one, they may actually have a fabricated childhood all ready to go -- and launch into telling you about it firmly and without hesitation! The point is, that they commonly try to avoid the reality of the matter entirely, since the truth activates traumatic memcons, and they are typically not emotionally mature enough to face such painful memories head on. (From this, many turn to "self-medication" to avoid the encroachment of reality altogether.) All I can say about this is use your ability to decipher their non-verbal behavior (posture, tone of voice, etc), and again, use the one year rule. If you suspect you're hearing lies...verify, verify, verify!Now, no responsible discussion of western psychopathy would be complete without at least a mention of sex and violence. I theorize, that while having sex, the male psychopath simply treats the female vagina as a masturbation vessel! (Creepy, huh ladies?!) They have no real capacity to share intimate, adult feelings; they just use other people to get their rocks off! As for violence, the psychopath employs what has been called "instrumental violence". This means that they simply use force, coercion and violence as tools to get a particular job done. There's rarely any emotion present; he just forces others to comply to his sick little world. Again...infantile. [This being considered infantile is significant. It suggests that the moderate to severe psychopaths may be experiencing "early pathology", which is generally more difficult to change than later occuring disorders.]Psychopaths use deceptive behavior in many social situations. This is one reason why they are so difficult to treat -- if they ever even come in for therapy! In the psychopath's mind, he or she is not doing anything wrong; if there's a problem, it's your problem, not theirs. Furthermore, as Dr. Hare points out (Hare, 1993, p. 198-200), all they do in traditional therapy is learn even more about human nature, and then use this knowledge to continue to pillage and plunder humanity! Short of constant institutionalization or invasive neurosurgery, I see no effective (and currently legal) way to protect society from their behavior. Unfortunately for all involved, they typically do not stop their destructive behavior until they are either dead or in jail.