Shifting Sands




You feel like you are trying to deal with an opponent that always seems to be one step ahead. It is like trying to tie down a vapour or stop the tide from advancing and engulfing your sand castle. No matter what you do, we always seem to have a way of squirming free, walking away and carrying on as normal. It is like trying to fight a battle with a rusty and nicked sword and one hand tied behind your back. It is akin to those dreams where you try to run but find you cannot move. You try to scream but no sound come from your throat. Every move you make appears to have been anticipated. You play a full house in poker and I produce a royal flush but where did that extra king appear from? I always have something up my sleeve. You are chasing the end of the rainbow but it always keeps shifting, just a little bit further away. You are getting nearer, closing on your goal and then it moves again. You think you have mastered the rules and then we introduce a new one which suits our purposes.

          Last week we complimented the steak pie that you made. Our praise was effusive and it was a delightful hiatus in the otherwise unpleasant treatment you had been receiving. You decide to play this winning hand again and proudly place it in the centre of the table only to be met with a sigh and a roll of the eyes.

“What’s the matter? You loved the steak pie I made last week.”

“I don’t want to eat steak pie.”

“Why what’s wrong?”

“Why must there always be something wrong. I do not want steak pie.”

“But you did last week?”

“That was then and this is now.”

Cue scathing put downs and storming from the table leaving you bewildered and upset. You don’t make steak pie again only to be scolded the following week.

“What’s happened to the steak pie? Why have you stopped making it when you know that it is my favourite?”

You dress up to the nines and you are called slutty. You dress down and you are upbraided for not putting the effort in. You try to cuddle us in the night and an elbow is jabbed into your chest because you are making us too hot. Two hours later we wake you up and ask you why you stopped hugging us. We tell you that we will be in by seven and then appear at nine. You are forbidden from questioning us about this. You are not entitled to do so. We do as we please. You buy an expensive gift for our birthday and you are told that it is not as good as last year. The following year you really push the boat out to be told you have spent too much and we just wanted something simple. You re-decorate and select a rich chocolate brown. We declare it to be the wrong shade and point to a colour that looks no different. We will not let the matter rest until you have changed it. Once applied it appears the same. We declare we want to go out for dinner and you get ready only for us to decide we would rather stay in and watch sport.

          Whatever you do it is always wrong, never correct, not good enough and an erroneous choice. No matter how many times you ask what we want, you still make the wrong choice. You suggest that we do it ourselves and you are accused of not caring. You confirm you will deal with it and you are a control freak who will not allow us to breathe on our own. Whatever you decide to do or say we will find a way of twisting it around so it suits us. Our logic seems entirely warped to you but to us it makes perfect sense because the only logic we adhere is that which means whatever we say is right, even when we show rank hypocrisy or we contradict ourselves. We can reason away every contradiction you point out to us and if you somehow back us into a corner then we will just accuse you of badgering us, change the subject or walk away. In our minds we win every single time.

          We cast you aside telling you that you have let yourself go and we cannot be with you. You see us the next week and we are with someone less attractive than you, carrying more weight and who holds down a job less prestigious that yours. You cannot comprehend why we let you go and chose her instead, especially after what we said. You stare open-mouthed and scratch your head. To us we win again because we have acquired someone new whose fuel is better than anything you have ever provided and in addition we have got to you, so you pour out the negative fuel. If we had suddenly appeared with a supermodel instead you might talk a small degree of comfort in thinking that you could not compete with this person but do not let that think you have secured some kind of small victory. In our minds this just reaffirms that we were right to leave you and trade up.

          You catch us in bed with someone else. It is not our fault. If you loved us properly we would not have to stray. You show us complete love and devotion and nobody could ever accuse you of selling us short in the bedroom. We accuse you of having too high a sex drive because you must be getting it elsewhere. If you apply reason and logic, especially towards one of our lesser brethren, then they will ignore the force of your words and instead accuse you of trying to belittle and bamboozle them with long words plucked from the dictionary and why do you always have to patronise them with such words and sentences. Whatever you choose, whatever you decide, whatever you do it will always be wrong and whatever we do will always be right. Accuse us as much as you like for being twisted, illogical and difficult and we will be in your face pointing out how you always have to try and get one over us. Black becomes white and then becomes yellow. Nothing makes sense with us but that is because it makes complete sense to us. Our approach is to gather fuel and that means we can and must do so through any means even if that does not stack up when looked at from your point of view. This warped and stretched approach allows us to achieve our aims, we confuse and bewilder you, we upset and anger you, we control you and each and every time we know that we have succeeded. Like the most deluded Minister of Propaganda we claim to have defeated you even as your tanks roll past us in the background. We see only what we want to see and we are impervious to all of your reason. We will never accept what you tell us because that does not accord with what we set out to achieve and what we must achieve. Of course this will not stop you trying. You try to defeat us as we replace your arrows with celery sticks and your sword with a stale baguette. We never fight fair. Your frustration, annoyance and inability to comprehend why we do this is what keeps you bound to us and allows us to keep on doing what we must keep on doing. Extracting fuel.

          So, go ahead, build that tower, build it high with the stones that adhere to your beliefs and principles, from stone that is beautifully cut and polished, that anybody would admire and cherish, but let us see how you build that tower was the sands beneath constantly shift and alter. This is what it is to be entangled with us.

24 thoughts on “Shifting Sands

  1. entertainment says:

    I think your therapist would be proud of you if they read this post. I have witnessed growth in some of your followers. No refuted responses… yields little or no fuel. No gray area here.

  2. becoming ovservant says:

    How do you respond when a person resisting devaluation answers unemotionally with “I don’t know what you are talking about?”

    1. malignnarc says:

      That will amount to criticism and will ignite my fury.

      1. becoming observant says:

        Genuinely outraged, or feigned? You sound too intelligent to tolerate a relationship of any kind with an obtuse person. Yet, how can these primaries not know there are others?

        1. malignnarc says:

          Genuinely outraged. I do not couple with someone who is obtuse, I avoid that as part of my targeting, but if they later behaved in this manner (perhaps having gained some insight into what I am) I would respond furiously in order to strike back and provoke an emotional response from them as opposed to an unemotional delivery.

  3. nikitalondon says:

    Yes I remember this, specially with N2.. the food is too cold or too hot. The blouse is to tight, too early too late whatever possible that was contrary.
    With the others not so much, or I suppose not so much that I remember but my sand castle was anyway shifted with the other two.
    Excellent writing. True, real!!! 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻

  4. notquiteanarc says:

    I can’t imagine ever tolerating or entertaining this crazy making behavior. I wish a guy would have the gull to ever scoff at a meal I put in front of him. It would either go straight into the garbage or into his lap, and there would be no home cooked meals in his foreseeable future! I’m not a people pleaser…at all! I dress how I see fit and If I were ever called a slut for dressing a certain way I’d immediately change into something shorter and tighter. He’s tried and failed at devaluing me and then immediately goes back to the love bombing when I go no contact after one of his degrading tirades. I must find it amusing or I wouldn’t continue to entertain his crazy.

  5. becoming observant says:

    This is actually a perfect allegory for the health insurance industry in the US.

  6. T says:

    You ain’t never lied, HG…..
    Welcome to the devaluation funhouse….*smh*

  7. mlaclarece says:

    I guess this is where your book “Revenge” comes in handy for trying to get a few swings in that would register with your logic on things. Because trying to process apologies one week on to nasty insults the next week will drive one into sheer madness.

  8. Cody says:

    Very enlightening, HG, as usual. Gracias.

    1. malignnarc says:


  9. bethany7337 says:

    Which is why NC is our only choice and the only way out.

    True, so very true. Does anyone else feel surges of frustration just reading this?

    HG, if you know it’s hypocritical…how can you be right?

    1. malignnarc says:

      Because I say so Bethany. It is right by my logic, not yours. You call it hypocrisy,I call it pragmatism.

      1. bethany7337 says:

        But you called it !!!!

        1. malignnarc says:

          I was using your language to illustrate the point so it could be understood.

    2. Freedom says:

      Very much so Bethany and pangs of the hurt and distress my ex narc caused. It stirs all the inner emotions. 😓😓

  10. Cara says:

    God yes! I dress up, try to look nice & it’s “Where do you think you’re going?” I take a more casual approach & I get “You look like a washerwoman”.

  11. Freedom says:

    Again very well written and sums up the confusion and mind games oh so well

    1. malignnarc says:

      Thank you.

  12. Reblogged this on narcmagnet69x96.

    1. malignnarc says:

      Thank you.

      1. ☆HG☆

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