Ah, you recall those heady days during the golden period when nothing was too much trouble for me? Breakfast would be brought to you in bed. I would take your dog for a walk without being asked. I would leave those little love notes hidden around the house for you to find after your trip away. I would walk into the countryside and pick flowers for you to hand over to you with my dimpled smile. Something upset you? I would listen on the telephone or drive across to listen as you cried and emptied your heart. I was on hand, on time and on your side.
After a few months, longer if you are really lucky, my helpfulness and ever present assistance has eroded. If you ask me to do something you will be met with a sigh and a roll of the eyes and I may just do it. More likely I vanish when chores are required. I never answer the phone when you desperately need to speak to me to discuss your bad day at work. I flat refuse to do the things that I always did for you and indeed I will even deny that I ever did them. To reinforce this stark withdrawal of my services I will then always query what have you done for me? I will trot out the list of things that I have done for you (adding some fabricated ones in for good measure – go on, try and suggest I am making them up and see what happens next). Isn’t it curious how I have a foggy memory about agreeing to pain the fence yet I can recall with amazing recall the date, manner and duration of each and everything that I have done for you. I only ever did it so I could hook you and then throw it back in your face. Of course, as with everything I do, you frantically try to fathom out what has happened and to steer us back to my useful and helpful period. Thus the dance goes on.
Social media is a substantial weapon in our arsenal of manipulation. Invariably, our selection of targets and the courting of the same will begin either through social media or if that is not the starting place, we will use social media as a device to aid and progress our seduction of you. From mining your online profiles for the purposes of gathering information about you which we can then use to maximise the prospects of successfully seducing you through to utilising the pervasiveness and flexibility social media affords to maintain our love bombing campaign. At the outset we probably sourced a half a dozen prospects including you, our tendrils reaching out through the electronic highways until we settled on you as our primary source. Once secured, we then allowed the width and depth of social media to expand the blazing glory of the golden period. How exciting was it to wake up and wonder what we had posted to your wall? How exhilarating was it to see our liking of your tweet and the subsequent re-tweet to our own followers? It became addictive, the frequent checking of your various social media profiles to see what delightful comments had been strewn across them by us. Of course, we would never shirk the opportunity to use the power of social media to devalue you and harness it for the purposes of smearing you to all and sundry. There is however a period of time that lies between the seduction and the out and out devaluation. It is a period of uncertainty, confusion and worry. It is hinterland beyond the wonderful golden period and outside of the scathing and savage devaluation. We revel in this ambiguous period since the plausible deniability that accompanies it allows us to plant those seeds of doubt in your mind so that you begin to think that it is you and not us that is the problem. You are forced to over-analyse, speculate and waste countless hours wondering what our intentions are. We have been so loving to you, so surely this behaviour cannot be what you fear it is, a dimming of that desire, a passing of the passion and a limiting of our love for you? No, after all the wonderful things that we have said, especially plastered over social media so many times, these recently odd activities cannot mean we have grown tired of you can they? You do not want to worry but you cannot help but do so because something is not right. You are fearful of mentioning your concerns to us as you do not wish to be seen as insecure but these actions are troubling you. Are you reading something into them that is not there? Are you over-reacting to them? After all, it is not as if we are directly writing something that is hurtful are we? Or are we? It is this uncertainty that serves us well in the provision of fuel. Furthermore, should you challenge us we can brush your concerns to one side with ease which will only serve to increase your apprehension. This tactic then paves the way for us to press forward without our devaluation of you, secure in our knowledge that you are now feeling vulnerable, that you are unsure of what to think at best and at worst you believe you are seeing things which are not there. This period of uncertainty which we cultivate and engender through social media is a purposeful step towards your devaluation. It is calculated to serve us.
Be warned; should you see these signs then understand that your devaluation is on its way and we are merely preparing the ground for the next stage in your ongoing and painful dance with us. Do not seek to find an innocent explanation should you witness these in action. Expect the brush-off from us and to be mocked for being worried, but worry you should. These are clear indicators of our calculated attempt to mess with your mind, using social media, before your devaluation begins. Here are ten ways in which we will do this.
Frequent likes on somebody else’s profile
Invariably this will be somebody of the opposite sex who you do not know and have not met. There will not be any comments from us – not yet – but a plethora of likes will appear on that person’s posts from us. Each picture they post will receive a thumbs up, a star or a heart from us, their comments or tweets, no matter how mindless, trivial or banal will have our indicator of approval. Indeed, as you scroll through this person’s output (and we know you will be looking) you will be hard pressed to find any post which does not bear our mark. This person may indeed be in the early stages of our cultivation as your replacement or it just may be a simple triangulation, but either way you ought not to underestimate the impact of those likes.
Removing your tagging of us
This is not a wholesale removal of ourselves from being identified on your Facebook page. We will not request the removal of those photographs including us or of us alone. That is saved until later. Instead there will be one or two removals of the tags so you are left wondering whether it was done by mistake (which of course we will reassure you that it was the case should you actually dare to ask us) or if there is something else behind it. It will one or two removed today, then another couple in a few days’ time and then some more as the trickle becomes a flow. This will engender a sense of apprehension in you which will have you checking your profile to ensure that there have not been any more tag removals. You will be relieved when there have not been and dismayed when more happen but each time the removal is small in number as we deploy our well-honed salami-slicing technique once again. This will keep you in the zone of it being too small to make a fuss about but not insignificant so it preys on your mind.
Block then unblock
It maybe for an hour, possibly half a day but never any longer. This is done to create alarm and consternation as you wonder why this has happened. If you happen to raise it with us we will express surprise and suggest a glitch in the system or it must have happened by accident and re-instate you with a smile and a patronising look. Usually you will sit fretting over it, wondering what it signals. Is it a mistake or is this a sign of something bad? You don’t want to necessarily raise it with us as this may make it seem you are always checking our relevant social media platform and so you endure an hour or so of repeated checking and nervousness until a huge flood of relief when you find you have been unblocked. That sense of relief is overwhelming and is part of tightening our grip on you by giving you a first taste of the roller coaster to come.
Look who’s back
You have noticed that we have recently followed or friended an ex. An alarm bell starts to ring. Why have we done this? This was the ex who was labelled as a stalker and a lunatic, who we warned you about and now we are friends with them on the relevant form of social media. What is that all about? You want to ask but you do not want to appear insecure or suggest you feel threatened, but you are and you are caught between (and this is what all of these machinations seek to do) needing to know and not wanting to show you are actual bothered by this development (because it might be something minor) even when you are. There are no messages between us and the ex, no interaction whatsoever, but who came after who? Did they send a friend request to us or was it the other way round? We both follow one another on Twitter – who initiated it? The questions form and race around your mind.
Message in the night
You awaken and check through the overnight postings on Facebook et al and notice that we were last on-line, according to messenger, 4 hours ago, but that was at 3am. What were we doing up at that time and more to the point, who were we talking to? The reality is we may well have not been talking to anybody but we decided to set the alarm, wake and create the appearance of having been doing something in the expectation that you will notice and subsequently become unnerved and suspicious at this development which then happens for the next few nights running before halting. Do you mention it? What was going on? Can you raise it with us or do you risk being accused of stalking our movements? What’s the matter with you? Do you not trust us or something?
You notice that we occasionally send messages, post or comment to a particular person along these lines.
“Hi, remember this one (insert YouTube link to song)”
“This was great back in the day wasn’t it (cue picture of an album cover)”
“We should go and see them again like old times (insert picture of link for ticket sales for upcoming concert)”
Who is this person? We have never mentioned them before and you thought you knew about our past. Why are we suggesting doing things with them and evoking old memories? Are we just friends or is there something else going on?
There is a sudden upsurge in postings which contain supposedly deep messages or retweeting the pseudo-philosophical output of a Twitter user about love and relationships. The memes and announcements appear to have our endorsement by reason of our posting them or retweeting them. Such examples would include: –
“I am not alone but I feel so lonely.”
“Don’t worry if you are single, God is looking at you right now saying I am saving you for someone special.”
“Trust is like a paper, once it is crumpled it cannot be perfect again.”
You’ve seen many of these cluttering up timelines before but why have we started sharing them? Are we directing them at you or someone else? Have you done something wrong? What has brought this on?
Missing in Action
There was a time when you would always enjoy the fact that after each time we did something together there would be reference to it on social media. We would check in at a particular restaurant and tag you as being there with us. We would make reference to the weather being particularly delightful at some picturesque location and make mention of you. Later on you would look back at this pleasant reminders of a special time together and also, admit it, you wanted the world to know about it too. All of a sudden we go out together but there is nothing posted. It happens again. Even worse when you make mention of it, you notice it does not appear on our timeline as we have changed our settings so that it has to be approved by us first before being seen by other people. Why have we done this? Do we not want people to know about you? Are we ashamed of you all of a sudden? Are we hiding you from someone else?
We didn’t mention it
You spoke to us earlier and we explained we were having a quiet night in watching a film. Browsing through social media you see Instagram pictures of us enjoying a night on the tiles. We never mentioned that earlier. Perhaps we changed our minds? Maybe we got a last minute invitation? What if it was planned and we chose not to mention it? Surely we didn’t forget about it? Perhaps we didn’t want you to know, but if that was the case why are we plastering the night out all over social media? By the time this happens a third and fourth time your suspicions are causing you considerable concern.
We post a comment or reply to a tweet you have directed to us with something that does not make sense. It does not follow in respect of what you have written. This non-sequitur has you puzzled. Why did we do that? Then it dawns on you. It must have been meant for someone else. The content of the message will hint at something which could be of concern – “ha ha yes it was brilliant” – what was brilliant? Did we spend the night with someone else? Did we go somewhere with somebody? Who was it? Then again, it might be innocent. Perhaps it refers to the recent football match we went to with our friends or perhaps something we watched on television, but it has unsettled you. Of course there was no message meant for anyone else, we just posted this comment or reply to make you think that it was meant for someone else in order to increase your paranoia.
We select our targets. It is not a matter left to chance when it comes to identifying those people we choose to ensnare and entangle with. You were picked. There was nothing random about. Thus you can be assured that as a consequence of this most deliberate act you were never at fault. The process of training our sights on certain individuals and in particular that person we choose as our intimate partner who almost always forms our primary source of fuel, is one which has a number of key considerations.
The methodology of our selection of our target is governed, initially, by two considerations.
What we are; and
The role we wish to fill.
These two considerations will then cause us to target certain people on the basis that they will be the optimum person for our needs. In terms of what we are, of course we are narcissists and you will be familiar with the various traits by which we are defined as being that personality type. Not all of those traits are present with every narcissist and whilst it is worthwhile you being aware of those traits it is far more important for you to recognise the type of narcissist that you may have been involved with and perhaps even more importantly the type or possibly types that may target you in the future. Some of our victims satisfy us whatever type of narcissist we are whereas others are more suited to a particular type thus certain of our kind will not bother targeting that victim.
Narcissists are drawn from two schools and what I refer to as four cadres. The schools are those of being of a Lesser variety, Mid-Range Variety or a Greater variety. The cadres are the Victim, the Somatic, the Cerebral and the Elite Narcissist. Narcissists belong to both a school and a cadre although there is not a category of narcissist for every combination of school and cadre as some are mutually exclusive. It is necessary for you to understand not only the schools and cadres but also the relevant combinations. This is for the following reasons: –
You will understand what to expect from the behaviour of the relevant class of narcissist;
This will shape the way he or she targets their victims, since different classes look for different traits in their victims;
You will learn to recognise those different types since you understand the classes of narcissist that exist; and
You will have a greater understanding of why the narcissist is drawn to you so you can take the appropriate action.
Accordingly, by knowing what we are this will in turn allow you to understand much about how our targeting of victims operates.
The second fundamental part of our methodology concerns your role in your entanglement with us.In terms of that role, the overriding objective of course is the provision of fuel and this means that the role is divide into two distinct categories: –
The Primary Source of Fuel; and
The Primary Source of Fuel
This is the category that you are most likely to belong to. Those who are in the supplementary sources are less likely to realise that they have been ensnared by our kind because those in the category of supplementary sources are usually (although not always) kept in the golden period for the purposes of positive fuel and the maintenance of that all important façade. Those who are in this category of primary source of fuel have the greatest exposure to us, experience the elation of the sustained seduction which goes beyond anything anyone in the supplementary source category would ever experience and you also then face the horror of the devaluation, the bewilderment of discard and the lure of the Hoover. You were chosen because we determined that you would fulfil the role of the primary source especially well because we ascertained when we targeted you that you would provide fuel on a frequent basis, of a high-grade and in copious amounts. This determination is linked to what type of narcissist we are and there are many of your traits which make you most suitable for the position of primary source with your particular narcissist. The fundamental point to understand is that those chosen for this role must almost always be an intimate partner. There may be occasions when, owing to urgency and a lack of available options, this role might be filled with a family member or a friend but that is rare. The intimate partner is always preferred in the role of primary source. There are several reasons for this: –
You spend the most time with us out of all the people we interact with and therefore you are best placed to provide us with fuel more frequently than anyone else;
You have been chosen because you believe in love and the attraction of being in a relationship. You place great value in these things and therefore you will give a heightened emotional response. You want to be in a relationship so you will give more to it, you will work harder to make it work and preserve it. You will be more loving, more appreciative and more admiring. Similarly, when devaluation occurs you will experience hurt on a greater level, frustration, upset and anger and accordingly your emotional response and thus fuel will be far greater;
We will invariably reside with you, either by spending time at your house or my house together a lot of the time or by moving in together. This will enable us to maintain the façade whilst we mete out our less desirable behaviour towards you behind closed doors. This would be much harder if the primary source was a friend or colleague.
It is from you that we will look to receive some of the shards and segments of attributes and characteristics that are applied to our construct;
We will also require a whole range of ancillary benefits which arise from what you are when you are placed in the role of primary source, for example somebody who might lend us money, provide a roof over our heads, be our nursemaid and so on.
Accordingly, the person who becomes our primary source is the most important selection of all those that we interact with. You are our chief provider of fuel and you must give us a whole host of other benefits. We must ensure we make an excellent choice when we choose the person who is to fulfil the role of primary source.
The Supplementary Sources
The supplementary sources of fuel are all those who provide us with fuel who fall outside of the primary source. Since the primary source is almost without exception an intimate partner this means that supplementary sources are anybody else we interact with, other than this intimate partner. This includes family, friends, colleagues, strangers and others beside all of whom are ranked according to the potency of the fuel that they provide to us.
We extract fuel from all these different types of relationship. We also acquire shards and segments from them for the purposes of our construct. We apply consideration (although not as much as we do when we target out primary source) to those people who we want to be in these various positions to ensure that they fulfil their role. This selection applies to nearly all of the people in the relevant categories contained within supplementary sources in the following ways: –
Their ability to provide us with positive fuel (occasionally negative – but almost exclusively positive);
Their capacity to provide something else of use to use e.g. their willingness to give us money, carry out work on our behalf, the provision of a place to live where we need a bolthole during a silent treatment and so on;
Their ability to provide us with some trait or attribute which is required for our construct.
These are the three things we look for most of all when we are targeting individuals to be admitted (or remain) within the group of supplementary source. Those are the initial considerations. With those in higher- ranking groups the process is also finessed in order to determine those who will best provide positive fuel, those who will best provide some other benefit and those who will provides us with the best traits for the construct. The forerunners in those categories, which we identify through a number of methods, become those who we admit into those groupings and form one of our supplementary sources of fuel.
These are the overriding considerations when we consider who we will target and you ought to have regard to them in order to understanding how to protect yourself. We build on these central principles through further refined and focussed methods of targeting you in order to choose the perfect victim who will suit or purposes as far as possible.
To gain additional and unrivalled understanding and insight into how we target you and the reasons for this, read Sitting Target.
The concept of something being off limits means nothing to me. I am entitled to take what I want. That promotion at the office ? My name is already on the door. I won’t secure it by working hard. Oh no. I will take the credit for the endeavour of others. I will embark on a rigorous campaign to derail your own attempts to secure the advancement. Bought a new car which I regard as superior to mine. Not much good with the tyres slashed is it? Or strange how the police keep pulling you over on suspicion of drink driving isn’t it? Everything is a legitimate target to me. Everything is in play.
I will engage in repeatedly reckless behaviours to get what I want. I do not care whose lawn I park my tanks on, I go where I want. I will not respect your boundaries because I just do not see them. What I love to do most of all however is take something precious belonging to you. On the lesser end of the scale I will hide possessions which you value or I will break them. Naturally, I will blame someone else, usually you. The scale of hurt increases. I will worm my way into your friendship group and cause them to like me more than you by a combination of a charm offensive (call in the love bombers) and a carefully orchestrated smear campaign of nasty whispers (you’ll never guess what she said about you) with the ultimate aim of you being edged out of the group. I will then walk away from the group because I am really not interested in them, I just wanted to get at you. At the top of the tree is the forbidden fruit of stealing someone else’s partner. Often these people will be in a solid and decent relationship but such is the level of my charm, such is the attention to detail I apply in tracking my prey, it is just a question of time before I pull them away from you. I will wreck relationships. I will shatter marriages. All to feed my hunger. As ever, once I have drained the flesh and juices from the forbidden fruit, I shall discard it and leave a battered, empty husk as I move on to the next piece of low hanging fruit. Now you know what the serpent in the garden of Eden was. Me.
The technique of future faking is a splendid device that we utilise by promising you jam tomorrow so we can have all the jam today (and oddly enough leaving you with no jam tomorrow). The ability to future fake is integral to us since it sits with our frequent and repeated lying so readily. Just like Enron did, we want the pay-out today based on the future profits and what if those future profits don’t manifest? Who the hell cares? We will just walk away and secure the pay out with someone else instead leaving you to rue all those promises of something down the line which never ever came to pass. We are persuasive, convincing and seem so genuine, such is our astonishing ability to act, that you readily believe that we will deliver on the promise, no matter how outlandish it may sound to you. We really, really mean it. Can’t you tell?
Such is our brilliance at convincing not only you as our intimate partner but also everyone else who gets caught up in our extensive fabrications. It never matters to us that we have no intention of delivering on that promise of something happening in the future because all we care about is the here and now. We are easily able to shirk accountability for our promises, avoiding liability and culpability is what we do best and if you think you can hold to us something that we have promised give it a go. All you will find is that you will be subjected to denial, deflection or another charm offensive whereby you have backed down on the strength of, yes you’ve guessed, more future faking.
Here are fifty examples of our future faking.
I know we’ve not been together long but we really should get married.
Of course I will go and see somebody for some help, I want to do the right thing for us.
I will pay you back.
I will never hurt you.
I will never hurt you again.
I will get tickets for that concert for us, no problem at all.
I can’t wait to take you away somewhere exotic.
I will bring it back for you next week.
I promise I will call you tomorrow.
I won’t tell a soul about this.
We have such a bright future together.
I can see us growing old together.
I cannot wait until we start a family.
Why don’t we go into business with one another, it makes perfect sense?
Of course I will help you out when you start your new job.
We should make plans to travel the world, just you and me.
Let’s look at houses so we can move in and live together.
I will always be on hand, whenever you need me.
I cannot conceive of a day where we are not with one another.
Come on, let’s go and look at engagement rings.
I won’t let anything come between you and I.
Imagine if you moved over here how brilliant that would be.
Imagine if I moved to where you are, I think I should do that.
If you can help me with this project, I will give you a great report for the pay review next year.
That’s right, give the money to me now and you can look forward to a 25% return in a year’s time.
No matter how ill you become, I will look after you.
I swear we will move just as soon as we can afford it.
We can’t move just yet, but we will when I have repaid this loan.
I know the loan has been repaid but I want to secure this promotion and then we will move.
The promotion has helped but I need to think about retirement at present and then we can move.
I want a large family with you.
Of course we will go there next time.
Whatever you want, just say it next time we are here.
We will definitely book there for dinner next time.
My home is your home, it is just a question of when, not if, you move in.
I want to be able to come home every night and find you there waiting for me.
Just do it this once and I won’t ask you to do it again.
I go to sleep safe in the knowledge that we have a future together.
We should make plans for where we will get married.
I want a huge wedding, all our friends and family need to be there, I want the world to know how happy I am.
Why don’t we select a retirement home now, after all, we are going to be together then you know.
If you do the groundwork for this project now, I will next time.
Of course I will change, I am determined to do it.
This is the last time, I promise, then I will stop.
I will seek some help, now isn’t the right time, but I will do it.