How Green is Your Grass?

I attended a consultation with Dr E. The view from his consulting room looks over the gardens to the rear of the building in which his room is situated. It is a well-tended garden and is immaculate all year around. I have yet to see anyone working in it or any sign of someone working there. There are never any tools left lying around or piles of leaves gathered together waiting to be burned. The lawn is especially verdant. A lush,green carpet which is devoid of daisies and dandelions. It has been cut and rolled so it appears pristine.

“Now,” began Dr E from his seat across the room from me. I moved my eyes from the garden to the doctor.

“We had been discussing your thirst for fuel.”

I nodded.

“You explained to me about how you draw that from those nearest to you and at first this comes in a positive fashion through admiration and adoration.”

I nodded again.

“Unfortunately however this never seems to last and you need to then collect what we have established is negative fuel based on negative emotional responses from those around us.”

I gave another nod.

“From our discussions I understand you have an unquenchable thirst for this fuel. I understand that. Accordingly, since you must always gather this fuel you are going to obtain it in both positive and negative forms. I wondered whether today we might look at why it should not always come from a positive form. How does that sound to you?”

“By all means.”

“Good. Now, you have told me previously about the different way that people provide you with this positive fuel. It is based on praise, attention, love, adoration and admiration. The nature of the provider influences the quality of the effect it has for you and also the nature of the praise etc has an influence on the quality. Now I understand how you draw this positive fuel from numerous sources but let us focus on it all coming from just one source, the most obvious being that person you are in an intimate relationship with.”

I gave another nod.

“We all like praise. We all enjoy being liked. It matters more to some than others. People offer attention and praise when they choose but as we have discussed you find it necessary to behave in certain ways that causes this to be given as a matter of course and in some instances you actively manipulate a scenario in order to produce this adoration. You have told me how you do this repeatedly during a typical day. “

I nodded once more and wondered when he was actually going to ask me something.

“So, my question is this, how might you ensure you get this positive fuel from just one person? How might you go about drawing it from one person and not needing to draw it from other sources. They may provide it voluntarily, that is fair enough, but I want you to focus on applying your manipulations to just one person to gather this positive fuel and leave the rest alone. How might you do that?”

“I don’t think that it can be done.”

Dr E remained silent as he used the void to encourage me to expand.

“I live in hope that someone might be able to satisfy me and give me this positive fuel all of the time.”

This time it was Dr E’s opportunity to nod.

“If they did it would make my life a lot easier. I would not have to seek the additional fuel from these other sources. You know, the lady in the coffee shop, people in the street, my colleagues and so on. The fact is I am not with the primary provider of my fuel all of the time.”

“I see. So you feel a need to be with them all of the time?”

“Well no I don’t and that is precisely because I am able to draw my fuel from other sources. If you denied me those secondary sources then I would be in trouble.”

“What would you do?” asked Dr E.

“Well, if the stipulation is that I am only allowed, for the purposes of this discussion, to draw my fuel from one source I would have to be with that source all of the time.”

“Because you need to draw on it frequently?”

“Precisely. No matter how much fuel say a girlfriend provides me in the morning I will need more and soon.”

“How soon?”

“A few hours, sometimes less.”

“Why?”

“Because if I don’t get it I feel weakened and then well you know, it starts to make itself known.”

“It being the creature?”

I nodded quickly.

“Very well. But if your primary source remains with you all of the time pumping out positive fuel you would not feel weak?”

“Yes but that isn’t practical is it? I have a job to do, she usually has one too. I have to go places where she won’t be there and I cannot be in constant contact on the telephone even when we are apart, however much I might try.”

“Sure, sure but I want to leave the practical to one side for now. I want to understand your mind set and attitude to this. I can then look at the practicalities later.”

“If you say so.”

“So if you could be with this one person, this intimate partner, this primary source of your positive fuel all of the time you would not feel weak because they are giving you the fuel you need. This would sustain you?” suggested Dr E.

“For a period of time.”

“I see. How long that would be?”

” I don’t know because it has never happened.”

“But you don’t feel it will last because you referred to it sustaining you for a period of time?”

“Yes.”

“Why do you say that? Could it not sustain your permanently, leaving aside the practicalities for now, but if that primary source is there all the time giving you praise, admiration, love and attention, won’t that be sufficient?”

“No.”

“You said that straight away. Why are you so sure?”

“Because in the past they have let me down.”

“Okay but this time the source is not going to go away, it is going to keep producing positive fuel just as you need.”

“It still won’t work.”

“Tell me why.”

I leant back in my chair and stretched.

“Where do I start? They stop trying. They do not give me the level of admiration I need. I don’t know why this is. It is not as if I stop being good to them. They always do this first. They don’t look at me the same way that they used to. That shining in their eyes has dulled. I have seen it happen and I don’t understand why. I am still the same, I still shower them with affection and make them feel wanted but they change. They don’t praise me as often as they once did,notwithstanding how often I tell them of my achievements. It’s them doctor, it as if they become bored of me but still want to be around me. I don’t get it. I don’t get it all. How can they be bored by someone like me. I hope they won’t do this but they do. That’s why I have to prepare my contingencies and have others waiting in the wings in anticipation of this happening. They make it happen. Not me. Experience has taught me that I have to have these reserves. Plus as well doctor there is so much fuel out there to be gathered and I know it wants to be supplied to me. A monk would be hard pressed to resist the lure of all this fuel. I am always wondering whether it will be sweeter and stronger than what I am getting already and guess what? When I go and get it I find out that it is. It is fresh and invigorating and it is all because the current supply is not doing what it should.”

Dr E was scribbling energetically as I turned back to the window and looked out into the garden again.

“You see the grass is always greener doctor and I have to go and lie on it.”

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25 thoughts on “How Green is Your Grass?”

  1. That completely exhausted me HG !!

    It gave me a good insight as to what it is like for you though.

    It must be awful to constantly need to feed the beast.

    I’m so pleased I can see the beautiful green colour of my own grass.

    could you water and feed your grass a little more HG? Even grass needs love and attention.

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      1. I don’t mow my own. Always someone else on hand who is keen to help ;). And that is not a euphemism ! Though after I wrote it I realise it sounded like one

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  2. Exhausted me too, reading this. Or maybe I’m just exhausted because i’m in the midst of a devaluation jag with my child-N…
    Still picking up shattered glass after her tirade last night before I left for work.
    Your Dr.E is definitely trying his best to understand what it is like for you. I can see how the pattern of your life is on auto-repeat. It would be nice to have one person in your life that would never let you down and always be enough fuel.

    p.s. The grass only looks greener because it gets watered and cared for.

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    1. Hi Sheila,
      I left you a somewhat lengthy response to your post, but as with others they seem to magically disappear (nevermind)
      I wrote about my thoughts on HG at the time also, but I’ll just say that I’m sorry to hear of your personal experiences. I too can relate to such drama with step children whilst they were living with me. I had to look at putting boundaries into place (which I couldn’t bring myself to do fully,despite my internal conflict as it disrupted the other children terribly, until the child in particular became an adult…shortly after which granbabies were added to the occasion) Babies having babies!
      It is hard, but eventually we learn to set boundaries for our own sanity and ultimate inner peace.
      I wish you well on your own journey and hope peace is not too far away for you . Blessed be ❤

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      1. HI crystalempath, my child-N is my biological child. The youngest of 3 (9 years between her and my second oldest) and has been a challenge from an early age. Her behaviours began shortly after I began seeing the man (an N of course) I was in a relationship with for the past 6 years. The relationship ended a year ago in a very explosive way after finding out things were happening to my daughter when I wasn’t at home. Even before that event my daughter was in counselling trying to determine the reason for her behaviours and actions. In truth it would have been a lot easier had I had the strength then to tell the boyfriend to hit the road. I felt like a referee between the two of them for the last 3 years. A lot of it has been explained now with uncovering what was going on, but it will obviously take a lot more to hopefully help her deal with things in a better way. Setting boundaries is one area that I needed help with in correcting her behaviour – hard to do with the double whammy of being an empath and her only parent (her father, not the same father as her siblings, left before she was born) that’s supposed to protect her. I’ve been working on it with the help of my own counselor and things have been slowly getting better, but there’s a lot of room for improvement. We will get there, her and I, one day at a time.

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      2. Hi Sheila,
        Sorry for the delayed response. The dynamics of any such relationships can make a huge impact on all concerned. I understand your inner conflict entirely and am so pleased you have a counselor to guide you. Indeed, it will happen, not overnight, but it will all become less of an overwhelming chore once you understand each other and remember we are all a “work in progress”. Single parenting has its difficulties, but being free of the N men in your direct daily life will help tremendously. Plz remember to be patient and kind to yourself too. It is rarely something we are used to being in such situations. As we grow, we learn and so can do better. One boundary at a time. ❤💪

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  3. A very interesting article HG. i guess the good doctors are trying to find a way to match your wiring with a sustainable way of having relationships ( only wanting positive fuel and that it is enough 😃).
    Because yes the grass is always greener but going from meadow to meadow… Its pretty risky.. Using up all the meadows one day… Better mantain your own meadow no??
    Didnt they try to find out why you need this much fuel and so frequent? I dont think all of your kind need the same high amount of fuel..?
    I go again to the similarity inbetween codependants and narcissists.
    The first ones need to be in a relationship and namely abusive relationships and the seconds ones need fuel.
    The codependants when not in the abusive relationship will get this pathological loneliness and eventually withdrawl symptoms when leaving one. The N gets the crawls of the beast trying to break free.
    I think like the codependant is addicted to the relationships the N is addicted to fuel.
    Maybe like us, you have to overcome childhood trauma to beat the addiction…
    I tell you all this because receiving fuel exclusively from one person is impossible 😖.
    For sure the X variable to find in all this complex social behaviour of the N is how can you need less fuel and keep the construct and not how can you get more fuel and keep the construct. 😃

    Could be that overcoming childhood trauma for the narcissist can mean becoming more real … Again I come up to the idea that you must have a lovely real HG. i do believe that the real you is just a mirror but somewhere the real HG Must be hidden…. 😋

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  4. When grass is trampled on and S#%t on it will die. It needs regular attention all year round not as and when you have time. Ask any successful gardener 😊

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  5. Sheila.
    Sorry to hear your difficulties. I am not unaware of your plight from past experience. Sometimes, choices need to be made for your sanity and ultimate inner peace ❤

    I dare say, if a single source was able to actually maintain/sustain H G’s “hunger” he would not allow it. That would leave him open and vulnerable to another. This would/could never do within his eyes, as he would not ever want to encounter an ounce of anything like what he had endured in his upbringing as a child. One quickly learns to obtain what one needs in order to survive and if one is hungry enough, and taught to be proud and in control, as anything less is a weakness..then so shall it be. “Control” over ones individual absolute needs (to trust in another and in so relinquish this control is unfathomable) ensures a kind of security that guarantees to maintain the hunger within. Despite its downfalls and exhausted fuel at times, it simply works.

    I have hope for each of us, but such is my nature. ❤

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  6. Needing and craving that constant flow of positive fuel… You said to Dr. E that you don’t see yourself being able to go more than a few hours without having more fuel and that is why even you realize it is unrealistic to have that solely from one source, being your intimate partner.
    Reading this, the only other human that is in need of such constant care with loving, positive reinforcement would be a newborn baby. When my daughter was born, I had read an article in a parent’s magazine citing that psychologists studied that the most important age to implement how a person will be able to trust and bond with people throughout their life actually happens between 0 months to 5 years. It is instant, out-of-the-gate from the hospital following birth for mothers / parents creating that initial blue print that the little individual they just created will march to that design.
    Who knows what Baby H.G. was up against with the Matri-Narc?

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  7. I truly loved my ex-narcissist. I saw past the masks. I knew his dark side. I granted him grace. Tried to understand him. I know I gave him more of a friendship than he ever had. I tried friends with benefits after knowing that we would never work as a couple. All I asked is that he be honest about what he was doing. He couldn’t even do that. He has begged for my friendship. I cut him off. I am so hurt. I am only on Day 4 of No Contact. I know deep down he doesn’t want to be my friend. It is so hard to accept the fact that I meant nothing. All I want to do is cry. Is anyone EVER special to a narcissist? I really thought I was. Truly. I grew up with a sociopath stepdad and I believe my mom had narcissistic traits. I thought I could spot a fake. I have such a hard time believing he felt nothing.

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