Remember Remember

You may be familiar with our selective amnesia as we demonstrate that staggering ability to forget something that you said only that morning, or a contradictory comment we made just five minutes ago. The number of times, when we are exerting our manipulative hold over you, we will announce:-

“I cannot remember that.”

“I had forgotten to do it.”

“I don’t recall that being the case.”

“I do not remember ever agreeing to do that.”

“It slipped my mind as it was not important.”

“I have no memory of what you are talking about.”

In our customary manner it is designed to bewilder you and confuse you and of course to draw a response from you that provides us with fuel. Of course, when it comes to advancing our own agenda then our memory suddenly becomes elephantine. We cannot recall the conversation we had two days ago about you going out with friends this evening but we do remember telling you six months ago that we do not like kidney beans and you have used them in the meal on purpose, despite our clear assertion that we do not enjoy eating them. Our powers of recall become especially impressive when it comes to recounting everything that we have done for you. You will be familiar with refrains such as:-

“After everything I have done for you and then you do this.”

“All the support I have shown you in the past and you say that to me.”

“Let me tell you how many times I have taken you out.”

“If I can just remind you of how much I have actually contributed.”

We will then with stunning accuracy, or at least it appears that way, reel off all of the gifts we have given you, the various places we have taken you and all those delightful acts we carried out in order to seduce you. One after another we will recount times, dates and places as if we were reading them straight from our diaries. Of course because it is all about what we have done it is etched into our memories, ready to be called up at a moment’s notice and detailed to you.

It is not just our occasions of largesse and benevolence that are carved into our memories, our ability to call upon vast depositories of knowledge about your transgressions is similarly astonishing. We will remind you that you ate one extra biscuit from the tin that we did two weeks ago in order to reinforce our point that you are greedy. We are able to tell you how many times you have turned up late and spoilt the evening. We recall your failures, breaches, shortcomings and misdemeanours with remarkable accuracy just as if we were reading a charge sheet to you. Whilst it is true we do have considerable powers of memory, it is another illusory act on our behalf. When you are subjected to these tirades about how many times you have failed to do the right thing, you will be caught in our crossfire of manipulative wiles. Your own recall and critical thinking will be significantly impaired. The way we rattle off these instances without giving you time to think let alone respond leaves you disorientated and naturally we say all of these things in our imperious and authoritative manner. You accept we must be right because we say it with such certainty, with considerable conviction and you are now struggling to remember what you ate for dinner the previous evening, so with increasing resignation you accept what we are saying. The reality is that much of what we are accusing you of from our list of wrongs committed by you is fabricated. We pluck them out of thin air but they sound plausible because you vaguely remember us harping on a little while ago about the fact you did not have dinner on time. In fact on that last occasion that was a fabrication as well, but we do it so often you can no longer distinguish between reality and fallacy. Just as we plan.

Our tremendous memory banks are also put into use when we remember your various weaknesses and vulnerabilities. We probed you for them using our subtle techniques of questioning and the false exhibition of supposed interest and caring when we seduced you. Each instance whereby you admitted to or gave a hint of some weakness was always noted and carefully filed away ready to be drawn upon at a later stage and used against you. Often this is so subtle, both in collection and use, that you do not even notice, but where we might use the weakness with a lack of finesse you will find yourself amazed that we even knew this about you, let alone remembered it. We ensure we extract these vulnerabilities and carefully store them as they are each golden nuggets of oppression that we need to rely on when your downfall begins.

Although we may demonstrate a vagueness about certain events in our past and refer to those happenings in an amorphous manner should you press us about the distant times and our formative years, the reality is what happened then is never forgotten either. We wish they could be but those memories occasionally rise up at us from the rolling mists of the past and try to drag us back to that period which we would rather consign into the archives of our mind with the archive door closed and bolted shut and no index card filed for those instances. No, nothing is ever forgotten.

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14 thoughts on “Remember Remember”

  1. Spot on, HG. There needs to be an HG course in advanced psych. They do not teach this stuff in college to those going into the health and mental health fields…sure, there are textbook lists of symptoms but it doesn’t help those see it in action. It is needed.

    This was devastating for me, this technique made me question my sanity so many times (still do)…it took someone with NPD to teach me what psychological abuse was and how devastating it can be. Everyone has a purpose and his purpose in my life is to teach me, make me stronger and informed.

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  2. Ironically I have an uncanny ability on remembering dates, events and things said (good or bad). My closest girlfriends call me the female “Rain man”. JN was no match for trying to deny things especially when I pulled out my arsenal of all his saved texts prooving things he was denying he ever said. Now with recent developments, since he thinks I’ve deleted all past texts and correspondence, he now denies things he said if he thinks it benefits him because he thinks I can no longer proove otherwise.
    No nothing is ever forgotten. It’s like a record playing on repeat in your subconscious dictating all your decisions in how you engage with people in your present.

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    1. Hi MLA, I wish I had that memory. I feel my memory got worse after this past relationship. I had to literally journal everything and track to not go into this abuse cycle fog/amnesia. His memory, particularly verbal memory, was exceptional and twisted. I’m more visual. Thank god I’m not tied to my ex legally and I don’t think I will hear from him anymore….I hope. I’m sorry you’ve had so many returns for hoovers.

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  3. The one thing I do remember and it caused me the most trauma was when she came back to him and I left the apt. He threw her on a plane and told her that he was still in love with me. He blew up my phone begging to come back and like a fool I did. He even went to my family house and begged forgiveness. The next thing I know he is texting her having her come back out. 2 wks later. I saved all of his texts to me telling me how much he loved me and he then asked why I still had them in my phone. What a slap in the face.. This was all last year. I now am a lot wiser.

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  4. Dear Douglas Quaid,
    Powers of recall are honed when you are consistently put in position to make a defense. This is why people who are raised in an environment that has a narc parent are able to think quicker than most. If situation is one that calls for defense, you have to remember what you have on the other person, or what are they going to pull out, if they say this, I do that, if they turn it this way, I’ll turn it that, thus causing quick thinking and ability for recall. Also applies to other post as racing mind. Our brains fire faster because we had to think fast our whole lives. Especially when you have a narc parent. They are so mecurial that you don’t know who is going to walk in the door, how will they respond, etc… So we are trained from infancy to read people faster, pick up their “tells” quicker and think fast. Thinking fast and slow was an interesting book by Daniel Kahneman. Also an older book called emotional intelligence by Daniel Goleman. Both books talk about thought processes. How we draw conclusion, think intelligently or emotionally to problem solve. I think HG your idea of narc/empath sharing same path and then breaking off is rooted in emotional intelligence. Both the Narcissist and the Empathic persons are quick to read emotions. Narc exploits it, empath fixes it. But they both read it very fast. I think this may be one of the attractions. Similar damages done, coping by intellectual intelligence or emotional intelligence or in some cases both. The skill is developed out of necessity. Narc is not satisfied, so you have to continually think of ways to respond. Sociopath will bring the fight. Verbally or physically. So will narc, but the thought here is that you fight back mentally. You learn how to cut and how to heal with words. You master it. It only takes 10,000 hours to master something. That’s why you are a master at it HG. You put your time in. It is a wonderful skill to have, total recall, but double edged sword. Sames goes for reading people. Guess that’s why I worked with the FBI…yes HG, That’s for the file. Oh wait, you got a mind palace with total recall.

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  5. I do not believe they forget anything but place it in a file (So to say) file it away to be used another time. I may not agree with they way they chose to use information gathered, but I do admire the way they think. Everything is put in place organized, ready to use at a moment’s notice.

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  6. I have also developed the ability to remember exactly what was said to me, facial expressions, voice intonation, exactly the lay out of the room, where we were all standing, clothes worn, what the cat was doing.

    Of course, that will be denied (invalidated), however, broken record back to them often works well. Yes you did say that, repeat as often as required. This always resulted in a N Rage, which means they have no real answer.

    Of course they will come back with a new determination to destroy you even more. However, broken record does have an impact. Just protect yourself afterwards.

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  7. I have an excellent memory as well. In fact, it actually startles most people when I am able to rattle off, with exacting accuracy, what was said, done, worn, etc. on a particular date or at a particular time.

    I`m not sure if this is the same for you, HG (I say that because I would not want to put words in your mouth or apply a blanket statement to you) but I take mental note of everything because it is part of my surroundings. I am always acutely aware of my surroundings because I will not be caught off guard or surprised by anything or anyone.

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  8. I have really good verbal recall, memory for events, dates, places, conversations. So fortunately, when the narc tried to change the story or deny events, or agreements, or what was said, I knew without a shadow of a doubt what had been said or done.
    Therefore, it seems stupid to me that he would so blatently lie and rewrite history. When I knew and still know the truth.

    It’s this strange situation where: I know, he knows, he knows he’s lying and I know he’s lying. So zero chance of any authentic connection. I don’t do well with a lack of transparency.

    At times, the narc did seem genuinely forgetful and, at others, very sharp. But as this post details; somehow able to recall and ’embroider’, (read ‘fabricate’), the past or alleged things I had done to him of course. Able to go a couple of years back and list every transgression.

    But totally unable to recall his actions.
    I wonder whether this was some kind of neural misfiring in the brain. Who knows, maybe it is?
    I stay with my reality and I know the truth.

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  9. It is highly manipulative and cruel to hide things and forget on purpose and remember just when its convenient 🙁
    I am very forgetful.. 🙁 so even easier to get me confused with such manipulation games 🙁 .

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  10. Convenient memory when it suits them, inconvenient when it suits us. Ie, he could recall I called him an asshole once back in 2014, as he stockpiled preceived criticisms…I profusely apologized for calling him that but he was baiting me at the time and being very condescending, he brought it up far too many times during any disagreement. Plus, I called him it once in four years. Even though he was one far more often then expressed. Yet, he couldn’t recall my exact birthday or our Anniversary.

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