Silent Treatment or Discard?


I am often asked how somebody is able to distinguish between being subjected to a silent treatment or whether they have been discarded?  There are clear similarities between the two and of course, they are both instances which are common in respect of the narcissistic dynamic between our kind and the intimate partner primary source.

Silent treatments come essentially in two forms. There is the Present Silent Treatment (“PST”) and the Absent Silent Treatment (“AST”). The PST manifests as us standing and glaring at you but not saying anything, or walking away from you every time you come near us so we go to a different room or we just sit in a chair and watch television acting as if you are not there, even though we may speak to other people. Whilst the PST is unpleasant to the recipient, it is often used because it is a manifestation of cold fury. The PST is used by all three schools of narcissist, but is heavily used by the Mid-Rangers as part of their passive-aggressive repertoire. The advantage to us of the PST is that we can deploy it with very little effort (thus conserving energy) and also because you are either in the same room as us or nearby we gain significant Proximate Fuel from your upset, anger or irritation. A PST’s duration is less than that of an AST. This is because the fuel drawn from its application is strong and therefore any wounding that has been caused will be addressed sooner. Accordingly, the PST may only last half an hour and at most until the next morning after you have endured a night in bed alone as we slept in the spare room or on the settee.

The short duration of the PST and the very fact that we are in the same room as you or same building means that it is clear that it is a silent treatment and there is no discard. Indeed, the PST will not even be the precursor to discard. The PST has one function and one function alone; to draw fuel from you and it is very effective in that respect.

Turning to the AST. This occurs when we disappear and you do not know where we have gone. We may head to a local bar for the night, book into a hotel, stay at a friend’s, leave town, return to our own property or head to the Intimate Partner Secondary Source that we are cultivating. The key components of an AST are as follows:-

  1. We are not proximate to you;
  2. You do not know where we have gone;
  3. You are desperate to find us (be that because you are worried, upset, concerned or angry); and
  4. You will try to contact us.

The AST allows us to draw two types of fuel initially.The first is Proximate Fuel. Although we are not next to you, if we receive anxious voicemail messages from you, we read angry text messages demanding to know where the hell we are,  mutual friends get in touch explaining how you have contacted them worried sick as to where we are and/or we see you stood on our doorstep banging on our front door as we watch with a grin from behind the curtains, then we draw Proximate Fuel at ‘witnessing’ your emotional reaction.

Secondly, knowing that we have left you in a state of anxiety or annoyance provides us with Thought Fuel. Even if we do not answer the ‘phone, pick up the text messages or voicemails, the fact we see you are calling us will provide us with this Thought Fuel as well. Accordingly, the AST is a low-energy/high potency method of gaining fuel from you.

We revel in knowing you will be pacing up and down concerned as to where we have gone to, you will be ringing around friends and relatives to try to track us down and alternating between anger and upset. We have caused this in you and this makes us feel powerful.

There is a third fuel line to the AST as well. The reason we opt for an AST and not a PST is also because we use the time away from you to either spend time with Non-Intimate Secondary Sources (our friends and family- quite probably smearing you at the same time) and thus we gain fuel from them but more often we use it to cultivate the Intimate Partner Secondary Source that we are considering for promotion to Primary Source.

The attention from this person or these people gives us additional fuel. We are therefore edified by this triple supply of fuel. No wonder the AST is so tempting. We gain fuel and we are also progressing the seduction of the prospective primary source, working on embedding them.

How long might an AST last? It could be an afternoon, it might be a month, it might be three months. However, as the time period lengthens this is when people begin to wonder if this is now a discard. The question arises, when is this behaviour no longer a silent treatment and when does it become a discard?

Would it be a discard after one day? One week? One month? Three months? Six months?

The answer is that you may have ASTs which last those periods of time and an absence of just one day may be the start of the discard.

If we are drawing fuel from you then it remains a silent treatment. Keep in mind that the potency of the Thought Fuel will only last so long, so we will need some Proximate Fuel which means we need you to keep knocking at our door and ringing our telephone. Of course, since we are not engaging with you, how do you know that we are still drawing fuel from you and it is not in fact a discard? You could be calling us and it is actually a discard, so how then could you tell the difference?

As you know, we will often not tell you that the Formal Relationship is over. We just discard without telling you. If you are trying to get in touch with us and you find that you have been blocked from our mobile number, we have blocked you on social media and none of our friends can shed any light on where we are, then you should realise that this is not a silent treatment but you have been discarded.

Since we need fuel during a silent treatment we keep the avenues of communication open but we do not respond. Thus we let you text, ring, drop notes round, send messages through friends and knock at our door. This gives us the fuel. If you have been discarded, we have no need for your fuel anymore (indeed you may not actually be providing it – see below) because we are drinking up delicious fresh positive fuel from the new primary source. Accordingly, we do not need to or want to hear from you.

if you turn up at our door, you may be ignored but more likely you will be confronted and be told in no uncertain terms to go away and leave us alone. You will be threatened with the police and restraining orders or our lieutenants will turn up to warn you off. We don’t need your fuel anymore and we do not want you hanging around like a bad smell and posing a risk to our harmonious new relationship with the new primary source.

Accordingly, a chief determinant between a silent treatment and a discard is whether you can contact us (albeit not actually get a response) if you can it is silent treatment. If not, it is a discard.

There will also be occasions where the absence starts as a silent treatment and then becomes a discard. This is where we have doled out a silent treatment to obtain fuel and bed in the person we are seducing and that seduction has been deemed to be successful, hence we install them as primary source, you are discarded and the blocking will begin. The silent treatment shifts to become a discard through the period of absence.

A further way of determining whether this period of absence is a silent treatment or a discard is to consider what has happened in the run up to the period of absence. As I wrote in 5 Reasons We Discard You there are five primary reasons  which bring about your discard. If you can ascertain that this has happened (admittedly it is not always obvious) prior to the period of discard, you will have a greater idea that you have been discarded rather than being subjected to a silent treatment.

Accordingly if you have

  1. Worked us out and reduced your fuel provision considerably;
  2. Realised that there is a new primary source;
  3. Become broken and numb so you are not functioning;
  4. Caused a major exposure of our behaviour; or
  5. Intentionally wounded us repeatedly through fuel free criticism

then these are reasons for you to be discarded.

Of course, the reality is that there is no such thing as a discard. It is instead a dis-engagement. If you are the primary source we are no longer interested in you and it is as if you have ceased to exist and we have (at the point of disengagement) no desire to interact with you ever again (of course this attitude changes at a later point when we commence our hoovering of you when we start our devaluation of your replacement). If you are an intimate partner secondary source, you will be placed on the shelf as we focus on the primary source or another intimate partner secondary source who we think will make a better prospect for promotion than you.

We eventually come knocking and therefore this dis-engagement ought to be treated as a long period of silence whereby you can recover and build you defences. Of course, it is more usually the case that you have no idea why we have departed and in your confused and emotional state you do not know the difference between a silent treatment and a discard.

Now you do.



113 thoughts on “Silent Treatment or Discard?”

  1. Thanks for the insight! I myself experience PST on a daily basis at the moment. Nice to give this shit a name.
    But what is fuel free criticism?

    Here it is my first contribution Mr. Tudor…

    1. Welcome Summeringa

      Fuel free criticism are words or more likely actions which cause wounding.

      Thus if you shouted angrily at me “HG you bastard I hate you, you no good piece of shit.” You might regard that as criticism but it will not wound me because it has negative fuel – your angry words, your angry tone and your angry expression wrapped around the words/actions. Thus I get fuel.

      If you stared at me in a blank fashion and said in a neutral tone “HG you mean nothing to me.” That would wound me. No fuel and the criticism bites.

      1. If I said thru text, “You Bastard!!!”, would it still be FUEL even though you cannot see my emotion, or is it non-fuel criticism, then? I am not going to call you that, but I was just curious for reference sake, of course.

      2. Thank you for explaining that Mr. Tudor. I have worried that I might have hurt their feelings in the past because of my words. Now I understand all my words were fuel. I’m incapable of being emotionless. My sentences begin and end with joy, sadness, exuberence, or anger. Do you think its possible some people may never be able to give fuel free criticism?

      3. You have put into words the insanity of dealing with these individuals. Often I am at a lack of words to describe the experience, but you get it. Your words are so comforting during this time of confusion, hurt and betrayal. I am so glad to have stumbled across your blog this evening. An enormous comfort. You’ve helped me more than you’ll ever know. Thank-you

  2. Brilliant! Your ability to take confusing issues and break them down into easily digestible and clearly articulated points is truly amazing! Bravo, HG! Just one point for clarification, is being placed on the shelf as an IPSS while you are focusing on the primary source considered a discard or its own thing?

    1. Not a discard IL (although the ipss may regard it as such) but rather parking you for future use. If the IPSS got in contact with us during the shelf period they would not be mailed but instead fobbed off with comfort crumbs. The narc won’t want to risk losing the ipss so no mauling, no discard.

  3. Thank you, HG! You are great! Of course, you would be. No surprise. After all, you are a Greater. 🙂

  4. Thank you for clarifying. I did have confusion between the two. I didnt usually contact so had no way to know if I was blocked. In my case they were married so it didnt make much difference to me. I had no stake long term but it was fascinating to watch the push and pull. One would repeatedly say: My job is good and now ive met you-im all good, or youre the one but I have this little problem here…(wife), and I cant fk up my life. Im still paying for the last one emotionallly and financially (he was married 20 yrs ago then left and moved in with the one hes with now and who he married just 2 yrs ago at age 52). Said he didnt want to “lose any dignity I have left retiring to live in a shoebox like a fkg a**hole. I responded: well a Condo is a shoebox and Im not sure theres any dignity living there with what amounts to be your Mother and acting like an a**hole but you do you. Yup-week long silent treatment. Then pops up like nothing happened: hey babe!
    Me: hows she working out?
    Him: who?
    Me: the new chick
    Him: Ill have you know Ive never had my dick in anyone else since Ive met you.
    Me: well thats a pretty sure bet cause its hard to stuff a limp piece of string into someone.

    And away he’d go again……lol.
    Everytime Id think well thats that. Nope.

  5. Brilliant HG.

    I dumped my covert Narc 3 weeks ago because he was acting like a 10 year old child…and I felt the ‘shift’ in the relationship but could not pin point exactly what it was. Now it is clear that I was in the devalue stage.

    After I called him out on his shit, I experienced the cold fury. By this I mean….his eyes turned black and his face looked contorted. It scared me and I left his home immediately. I sent him a text telling him to stay away from me, my children, my family and my community. He then blocked me.

    Fast coward three days I went to his home to gather my things and he was much calmer, but told me we were finished. He told me that he saw a side of me that scared him (projection) and he was pissed off. He said that he really liked me as a person, and although the formal relationship was over he wanted to remain friends. He then unblocked me from his phone. I left upset, confused and wondering what the hell happened. His rage and cold fury that he showed me days before was so dispportionate to the argument that we had. And just like that it was over.

    I sent him a text the next day saying In no way shape or form I could be friends with him. I called him out on his shit once again, told him he needed help, and also brought up his suicide attempt (he tried to commit suicide 3 months ago over a woman who he was in love with and dumped him) and that I was done. I also exposed him to my family, my friends and my community. I told him that I did. He was so emmeshed in my life-my friends became his, so did my family and my community. I feel a huge need to protect myself so I will not be hovered, nor do I want to see him again. He lives two blocks from my business and three blocks from my home.

    I have sent two follow up emails (very matter of fact/monotone) because I found out the web of lies he told. He then contacted my sister and told her if I emailed him again he would take extreme measures. (I laughed)

    I feel at this time that I have done everything I can to protect myself from any Hoover by not only exposing him, but by reading anything I can get my hands on at this point. I understand now I was discarded because I wounded him greatly through my criticism which then lead to the cold fury/silent treatment/discard.

    Thank god.

    Two questions:

    Why does a narc discard you and then want to remain friends? Is that a Hoover in itself? Or is an invite to the harem of friends that he has that consist of only woman? Is it so he can come back whenever he feels like it, or is it his way of seeing that I never move on from him?

    Also if a narc is exposed will they attempt a future Hoover?

    I was a excellent source of supply for him…he made a lot of connections through me as well as ‘friendships’. He is losing a massive pathological narcissistic space (my downtown hangouts that became his, my business is also downtown here and I am well established in the community) because I told everyone he tried to commit suicide a few months ago and he is also a sociopath. I have a massive tribe of people surrounding me here and they are horrified by what has happened to me.

    Thanks for al l you do HG. It’s been a rough few weeks but your blogs have been my saving grace. I also listened to the radio interviews yesterday and want to tell you that the brutal honesty of why you do what you do stung like hell….that voice of yours mesmerized me.

    Keep on keeping on. Your awesome.

  6. Would you maul me to death if it was your only possible way to get fuel because… just because that was the only way for you to get fuel. Would you do it in a slowly, torturous way, or more bloody and gory like?

      1. Oh Ya..sometimes I do not consider the practical solutions, first… or, the common sense to things…it’s one of my faulty traits 🙁 Thank you!

  7. dirty secret giving no fuel criticism and challenges. Me saying we should be friends. Me begging him to respond. No response until 2 months later when he sends silent hoovers ( calls, but no message). Did he put me on a shelf or was I discarded?

    1. Hello Lacy, you have criticised and challenged? As a dirty secret he is more likely to place you on the shelf and come sniffing around again (as per the silent hoovers).

      1. Sorry HG, that was poorly written on my part. Yes, I criticised and challenged him. He is in the middle of a divorce so I would assume the primary would be his wife and most likely where he goes when I am on the shelf….but one can’t be sure. He continues to hoover and they are no longer silent BUT they are ignored. I am happy to say and I have you to thank for that! It has been nice meeting you this year. You have made my life better.

  8. OK Jeffery Dahmer uh I mean Forgiven. Don’t start with your crazy or two nice men in white coats, with a nice jacket that has shiny buckles will be coming to pick you up and put you in a nice padded room with a lock on the door. You will be given a nice shot of thorazine and sleep it off until you can pull yourself together. Jus sayin.

  9. HG,

    To be clear, basically… you’re given the ST when they hardly respond yet leave a space open for you to communicate, and ‘dis – engaged’ when they leave no space for communication and tell you when you’re at their door step to “leave ’em alone”..

    BUT, HG what if they’ve told you that, blocks your number from directly cellular messaging yet doesn’t block the other forms you’ve used to communicate with one another (say WhatsApp) and they have their friend add you on facebook (but they don’t) , yet when you message the friend, you see that the friend has read your message (a message that doesn’t directly mention the narcissist), but does not reply at all.

    Like they say to not to message them, to “leave ’em alone”, yet does not block you entirelybut does not communicate ? What would you call that?

    I’ll wait for your response before I tell you what I believe.



  10. what would You do dear G. how would You act , if there was noone else left on Earth and You would be stuck with only me… no other sources would be available and You would now that if You break me there would be no fuel???

      1. You see?there is this One solution then
        I have to kidnap You and lock You in my cellar forever 😜 I’d keep You well satisfied on every level .

    1. Not during the golden period no. An IPSS would only receive a silent treatment if they had acted in a way which would require devaluation which is rare with the IPSS.

  11. hahahaha I LOVED it when he was silent. So nice and peaceful and quiet. No moaning and groaning. What an idiot he was when he stomped around! Swearing and acting crazy! When he disappeared and went God knows where…..I would sigh with relief and make a cup of coffee and sit and watch TV – only shame was when he came back.

    Course this was once I had worked out his game.

    It took a lot of time and tears to realise what he was up to.

    Like I told him…..I will take you down before you take me down.
    I got these Narcs sussed. They have big problems. Thanks HG for confirming what I already knew. Course HG may well ignore me. That’s OK. I get it. xx

  12. Dear HG, I trust your weekend is relaxing and enjoyable. I wanted to ask you, if I may, a follow-up question to the one I asked and you kindly answered earlier. Does the being put on the shelf/parked for future use while the narcissist is focusing on the new primary source apply to a DSIPSS? Thank you very much!

    1. Hello IL, it does but the DSIPSS tends to see more of the narc so the shelf period is lessened, this is because the DSIPSS is that dirty secret which next to nobody knows about. They are compartmentalised already which suits the way that we operate.

  13. Thank you, HG! I appreciate it. Still trying to get a good grip on the nuances between IPSS and DSIPSS apart from the most important one you talked about in your article. However, would you say this shelf/parked period is still at least as long as the golden period for the new primary source? I suspect I am a DSIPSS. My narc has been with the new primary source for several months now. We had started our relationship about 2 years ago when he had a now discarded old primary source (ex wife whom he recently divorced). When I reached out in the past since he got the new primary source, he would always respond in a friendly and complimentary way. So I presume it means I have not been discarded. He only initiated contact once during this time a few months ago. I have not reached out since we spoke about 2 months ago and neither has he. Just wondering if and when I may hear back from him and what is the likelihood of him resuming our relationship. Sorry this is long. And thank you again for your kind attention and time!

    1. Yes the shelf is likely to be commensurate with the golden period for the new primary source albeit since the DSIPSS is compartmentalised he or she will be fed comfort crumbs of a benign nature from time to time (but the infidelity etc will be parked during the golden period) and in effect the DSIPSS will be treated as NISS if there is interaction during the golden period. If you contact the narc during this golden period, the discarded individual will be treated to malign behaviour but a DSIPSS (not having been discarded) will be treated in a benign manner and future-faked as to keep them onside.
      Thus you may be shelved and hear nothing. Shelved and be treated benignly as a NISS (if say the narc bumps into you somewhere) or shelved and if you contact the narc be treated in a benign manner as a NISS. You are not discarded and therefore not regard in a malign manner.

  14. Wow! This is so insightful and sheds so much light on my observations I could not quite comprehend. Now it all makes sense. I cannot thank you enough, HG! You are the greatest!

  15. Dear HG, my ex narcissist told me he was getting back with his ex wife after things started going down hill between us and I went to his ex wife to find our some truth of some matters that had to do with my health and she would be the only one that would know if he was telling me the truth about his matter. The first thing out of her mouth was, ” so you are the secret “.
    I let her talk the asked my question but a few days later she started to self harm her self saying the pain hurt to much and she guessed she wasn’t cutting deep enough. But he tool her back after being divorced for prob 3 years or so. Him and I were together for a year and a half. But yep he ignored every phone call, text etc. But his mom told me that he told her that he gets them and reads them but will not respond back. Even though through a text he said he will never contact me again, which he didn’t until 10 months later. I debated on answering the phone when he did call and I did but I said ” I believe you dialed the wrong number “. There was silence on his end so I said hello twice and then was able to hear his co workers but wasn’t able to understand what they were saying. Then a couple days later I did text him and told him I was sorry about how I answered the phone and if he would like to talk that I would like that also. But I also let him know that I knew he didn’t butt dial me because my number wouldn’t be in his recent calls let a lone in his phone because i.was sure his ex wife wouldn’t like that to well. But never heard back from him.
    So my question is when he called me was he trying to weasel his way back in because his ex wife and him were having problems again? And do you think he took me off of his shelf forever being I told him I believed he dialed the wrong number? Or do you think he put me back on the shelf being I basically apologized on how I answered the phone and if he would like to talk I would like that?
    I’m learning a lot about who he is. I just don’t want to believe he could be this person. What hurts me the most is that I truly believed him to be my best friend and for him to just disappear like I was a piece of crap hurts the most. But I am getting stronger everyday and it is all from finding help on line by listening to people’s stories and of course just finding out about you. So thank you….

    1. If it is when you have been discarded, he has no interest as he is infatuated with the new primary source. If it is during a silent treatment it will be regarded as a criticism and this will ignite his fury.

    1. When we disengage you will be left alone for a period of time and then the hoovers will follow if there is a Hoover Trigger and the Hoover Execution Criteria is met.

  16. Ok but can the “relationship” after the discard be just hoovering to get a reaction and not necessarily resumption of the formal relationship ?

  17. If you text and don’t get a response, you can’t really know if its discard or ST because you can’t tell if you’re blocked or not.
    So what then?

  18. Thank you, HG. I’ve already asked for information what to expect after my Greater Narc has devalued me since I reduced fuel. I’d blocked him off all Social Media, because of his triangulation games.
    What He did then, is, he visited my Li Account with a fake profil, but I should realize, it was him. After that odd act he knew I would reach out for a test. He replied with a friedly question. But of course as soon as I would respond, he discarded me by blocking me as well and enjoyed the fuel.

    I was his IPSS and I think he either has secured a new IPSS or even returned to his ex wife who has been discarded one year ago.

    My question is: is there still hoovering to expect even there is no or just less fuel for him or is he now leaving or discarding me for good?

    1. There is always a risk of a hoover subject to the Hoover Trigger and the Hoover Execution Criteria being met. He will be encouraged by the recent (I assume) success he achieved with you.

  19. I am wondering if it’s discard or just a little bit of silent treatment ?hahaha
    I call him out on his all bullshit . Gaslighting and silent treatment is his favourite tools that he uses i have noticed , but i didn’t buy a word he said and i cut him off then and told him to never talk to me again .I told him i am blocking him , but didn’t because i want to see what is he up to lol I know i am mean to him, but he was more mean to me .And it starts so wonderful , omg , i can’t still really believe all of it was bullshit .
    Will he hoover or not?It’s been 2 weeks now.

  20. Thank you. I will guess now he knows i am really pissed off and may not hoover yet, even if a Hoover Trigger is there .It makes sense now if i can say so ,it’s the first time that he don’t hoover 🙂

  21. Hi HG, this is a fascinating website. I’ve learned so much. Thanks sincerely for your insights on this subject.

    I have, if you don’t mind, a scenario for your consideration (in line with the silent treatment or discard sub-topic): my suspected (considerably older) somatic narc was a coworker who subtly hit on me for about 3-4 months of our year-long working relationship. Though few things were explicitly said or done, it felt like a covert sort of love-bombing (though not so covert, I suppose, since a few other coworkers picked up on it as well). Towards the end, I was definitely warming up to him and convinced that he would make some sort of move — however, he detached himself quite skillfully through affectionate correspondences and moved to a different office. Then, after several months of silence, he randomly burst into my office in the middle of the day(!). I was shocked and annoyed–I felt like he’d strung me along, ended “it” (whatever “it” was!), and then returned for more. I did not stop what I was doing to speak to him. After standing there awkwardly for a few minutes, he ran out!

    I emailed him out of politeness about a week later and asked him why he didn’t stay. He sent me a very cold response saying that he was unhappy at his new office and would like to catch up with me and our coworkers. I responded, conveying that I was sorry if he felt bad upon returning to an old community and offered to tell him about future happy hours. He did not respond. I did not follow up, either.

    It was, truthfully, one of the strangest dynamics I’ve ever experienced in my life–mind-fuckery of the highest order. I have some theories as to what transpired–obviously I inflicted some sort of massive narcissistic injury by a) not acknowledging him and b) not telling him about future happy hours. Discard-worthy, surely? It’s been about three months, and I have not reached out/provided anything that could, from my perspective, be regarded as fuel. The only thing that causes concern is that he (as a somatic) did not technically ‘complete his mission’ — that’s the only thing gnawing at me at present. The question at hand is, I suppose, how a narcissist handles/regards a failed seduction.

    Once again, your thoughts on this scenario would be much appreciated! This is truly one of the most comprehensive resources I’ve encountered on this subject. I am grateful for the work you do.

    1. I’m not hug Tudor but I read about men like this in a book by Rhoda finding I think it was called the ambivalent man she described men like u just described they have some kind of issue not necessarily narcissism but are unable to follow through on a flirtation and bring it to the next level

  22. So if my ex narc told me to forget him but did not block me on anything then it means it’s silent treatment not discard I blocked him after he said it and I don’t think he has a new primary source because I see he has been busy as a beaver liking and commenting on other woman’s pictures in facebook which I have him blocked on but I have a second account I also noticed he keeps checking hangouts were I have blocked him almost to see if Ive unblocked him

  23. So, if during the AST if I put the necklace he bought me for christmas for sale on facebook did that destroy him😂😂😂 shortly after I did that he blocked me lol…thank God!!! As he’s the one who announced our relationship on facebook😂😂😂

  24. I went no contact after I figured him out. I messaged him after couple of weeks of no contact ready to continue, he replied almost immediately as if he was waiting for this to happen, but told me that he did not wish to continue our affair. Since then he is hoovering me by technology. I went no contact again. What can be expected from a Greater in this case, if he didn’t seem to replace me as his dirty little secret, but still has his IPPS in place?

    1. You will continue to be hoovered in accordance with the Hoover Trigger and Hoover Execution Criteria. If you will not comply, you are likely to be devalued and dis- engaged with and then replaced.

  25. Has there been a situation where the narc has given discard/silent treatment together as a type of ploy to in fact have the person later reach out to them? Do you have any info on this?

      1. In his previous silent treatments I usually but not always ignore him and he ends up reaching out to me but this time he has not

      2. H.G,
        What if I didn’t reach out during his too many to count 2-3 days of ST, but did ask (when we’d skype why the ST, hidding my frustration, walking on eggshells). So not too much fuel given yet he kept on using the ST (very long distance relationship). What was his point? Fuel knowing it pissed me off and watch me keep my cool?
        Thank you

      3. Hello Ballerina9, he gained some Thought Fuel from your perceived reaction to the ST and of course he gained some when you spoke about it later. If the STs were Absent STs he may well have been courting someone else.

      4. Can reaching outbtoo often or excessive praise become overbearing or suspicious to the narcissist? Is there ever a thing as too much fuel? Do they know when you are not sincere?

  26. So I was like a #*% petrol station providing fuel and received only the ST. When the idiot noticed the station was closing up a short response came just to once again fuel up and ensure a 24/7 availability again.
    So the station is now permanent closed, gone bankrupt and no where to be found. The online presence is gone and the only way to reach is to call the number once provided.
    The silence finally killed me and no more fuel left to give. Thank you for the explanation to this mad and childish behavior. Passive aggressive is his thing and to play hide and seek. Please hide for ever because I don’t seek anymore.

  27. Wow! I’ve been on this hamster wheel 4 years. Every time I’m bring given silent treatment I’ll be the one to beg for
    Validation then the discard happens about a week after silence . It’s seasonal around birthday, holiday, summer… And the. He returns within a month and I take him back only to find out some horrible details around infidelity, both physically and emotionally. Once I uncover truth he is back to love bombing and counseling all of which he loses interest again within a few months or if triggered by a holiday. I felt insane

  28. Hi HG,
    my husband showed me the silent treatment and wanted a separation. He said that he wanted to find himself and does not see any future, however does not want a divorce. I decided to divorce him and told him that. After all the trianglelation and betrayal. He contacted together with his narcissist parents a lawyer and he only emails me when he want to discuss divorce issues. He seems cold and distant. I wrote him that I know his parents and himself are narcissist. But he ignored the email. Am IcDiscarded now?

    1. Hello Lara, it is difficult to state precisely as I do not know the full facts. For instance, his comments about separation may have been purely for the purposes of manipulation and he did not actually want one, but you have called his bluff. Are you in separate properties? When did you separate? Do you know if he has a new romantic interest or not? Where is he living? This may be a dis-engagement and he has a new IPPS (because his statement about separating was true as he was ready to jettison you) and therefore his communications are malign hoovers because he has to engage with you still. Alternatively, you may have escaped him and he is seeking fuel from secondary sources whilst trying to find a new IPPS and in the meanwhile malign hoovers you out of a desire to punish you. I can certainly provide you with a definitive view through a consultation.

  29. Okay so I have a tricky one. I hooked up with my neighbor. No love bombs commenced as we both wanted casual. Then later I invited him to something and I think I got needy and he apologized and said he wasn’t in the same place. No narc behavior so far, he’s kinda arrogant but he is legit smart, cute and has a good job. He also has longstanding friends, is on good terms with his ex and he apparently doesn’t lie, or at least people who have known him for a decade don’t think that he’s pathological by any means, just kinda selfish. Well, I told him not big deal no hard feelings. I don’t know if he’s full blown or just a little but that’s when he seemed to be more interested in my reaction to him and I mostly ignored him when he came over and started being friendly with the roommates. I just had this…feeling…he was like an old boyfriend who was definitely a narcissist, he still writes me a decade later trying to hookup. The silent treatment started over the phone. He told me later he had blocked me. Well I was cool about it ending but when he’d come over I’d ignore him without being rude but I would message him leave me alone, I’m uncomfortable with you actively coming over and he never answered. Later said he blocked me. We were friends on Facebook but I never got on it. During this time he hung out a lot with this chick he has had sex with but she had a boyfriend and I know he liked me enough. So this dance goes on but I’m nice to him New Year’s and we hook up because hey, hookup holiday, I like sex. Well…that’s when the more obvious narc behavior happens, like he tells me he blocked me or ignores my calls when I know I’m not. I believe him that for a month or so he wasn’t getting my texts because I had the same problem with others, he readily offered his phone when I asked him and seemed genuinely surprised and I could call him. But the blowing hot and cold bothered me and now I kinda did like him. Well I ignored it for awhile, life is easier without relationships and he’s been friends with my roommates for years so we both usually ended up drunk at the house wanting sex at the same time. But it began bothering me he never wanted to hang out at all. I mean, he’d hang with this chick and her boyfriend but not me? So I realized I wanted more than he did and when I heard he showed up at 4 am and was really wondering where I’d gone I realized it was lame I was flattered by that. So since I knew he wasn’t getting my messages I thought out a nice letter about how it wasn’t a big deal but I needed more and I couldn’t date other guys if I kept up with him because I liked him too much. (I had written some bitchy stuff before so I wanted to be respectful as possible ). I even said give it a few months and we could have sex again! But see, the main issue I had that shows real narc tendencies at this time is disappearing after sex for days or weeks depending on how busy here was and then expecting me to be ready when he was. It was selfish and I was done. But the dude chased me for a week, he even came up to my room when I was avoiding him and I fucking cried. Fuck me. I didn’t even want feelings I don’t know why I got them except familiarity. So I tell him that I don’t even know what I want but the next day he comes over again and I tell him that if we are going to keep being casual wear have to have a grown up deal and work out rules. He agrees, we have sex, I don’t see him for a couple days. So I write a note like, c’mon, I was serious. Nothing. So like a week later my driveway is full and I have to park by his house. I see he’s home and I feel pissed so I walk into his house like he does mine whenever and yell at him while he’s in the shower. I don’t see it til later but he wrote I’m sorry on my sunroof in the mist. I freaked out a couple more times but he wasn’t home. I fucking hate the silent treatment it drives me fucking nuts. So I call him. He doesn’t block me but won’t answer. I leave it be until a few weeks later my friend gave me a smartphone so I’m on facebook for the first time in a million years. I forgot we were friends so I look at his page and…he told me we weren’t in the same place as I was bugging him to be my date for my work Xmas party, he was the year before, but instead he gets weirded out and I see he’s brought that chick with him. So I could have blocked him or defriended him but I wrote comments about how I’d rather make public comments because he’ll block me like he did my number, blah blah blah, mean stuff. He blocks me, I get in a fight with the chick because I never liked her much (not because she fucked him, I get along with his ex, she is just vapid) I call him over and over, he blocks me. I hate the silent treatment. Tell me to fuck off but say something. So I decided to be…ironic? Since I was blocked I write a comment on his work page (I thought it was a group, I didn’t realize his boss would see it) that he’s a coward and bad in bed. I forgot about it until a few days later because he tried to pay my roommates to kick me out. He then threatened a restraining order which pissed me off because he was always in my house. I left him a note later with a number for the county and instructions how to get one, saying I would gladly comply. I don’t know if he thought that they would or not, but I purposely wanted to be discarded because I can’t seem to resist him when he’s around but I know he’s not good for me. Problem is…he lives next door. Even if I am blocked, one I have 7 sisters and long learned 50 ways to contact someone who blocked me and two, he can come over whenever he wants (except for when I’m alone, my roommates agreed that’s fair). It worked fine…my roommate went to his house one day. Apparently he asked about me, calling me the angry chick, and said he didn’t get the restraining order so he could hang out over at my place. He is friends with my roommates, so that might not be about me. I sent him a bitchy text when my new number telling him to block it. He came over one time after to help my roommate but we didn’t stay in the same room. He seemed noiser than usual. He totally didn’t answer any of my texts but then when I stopped them he randomly showed up a few days ago at 4 am on a Friday night. He didn’t warn my roommates and I was the one who ran into him. He looked at me with a glare and my face dropped because I wasn’t expecting him. Well…I thought if he did show up it would be like that. So I just moved to the side, totally taken aback, and kept my eyes to the ground. He moved past me and left, he didn’t even talk to my may have been because I put a gift he gave me on his back porch because I don’t want to think of him anymore, part of me thinks he wanted to remind me im in trouble but I’ve never been good at the narcissist game. I’m too…self-respecting? to go with it. Anyway, was it one last glare, or should I expect some trouble? Any insight into what I can or can’t expect would be appreciated to prepare myself. You’re the best, but you knew that, right?

      1. I think you have my email, but if not I’ll send it to you. The whole thing is nuts and I probably made a big mistake knowing what he is, but I thought public humiliation would back him off longer than it has and some insight to steel myself would be splendid. I wish I had replied right away, this stuff is sickly interesting to me, not gonna lie, I’ve always been a bit of a masochist. Oh. And that’s a fake name I’ll give you my real one in e-mail

  30. I have been involved with this N for over 10 years. He is married and so am I. It would go on and off in the beginning (I didn’t now any better). Of course, I was confused and fell for it each time. Two years ago I really started to notice a pattern. Just prior to that we were meeting up on a very regular basis. I’ll admit I would practically drop everything to meet him. Find excuses to be away from my family, etc. There was a point where he became very clingy and oddly emotional – like he couldn’t spend enough time with me, and during that week and a half it did not involve sex. He had a horrible fight with his wife and daughters. He left the house and checked into a hotel. Had me meet him for a drink and then that night sent me a note about how “toxic” he was and that I should stay far away from him. He sounded very dark and depressed. I was actually worried. I didn’t really know what “toxic” meant at that time. I referred him to a therapist I was familiar with. He said he loved me for caring and would be okay. Then he seemed to change…then I Googled the phrase narcissist because once he turned 50 every email seemed to a need for reassurance on his performance. Did he still have it? It was odd. Then eventually I reached out the therapist myself. He happens to be an expert on narcissists. He helped me understand I’m an INFJ empath. I’m apparently a major target for Narcissists. I’ve tried to go non contact but it is hard because I work with him. We actually sat down one afternoon and had a very open conversation. He was honest to say that there is only one thing in this world that relaxes him and takes his mind off things. It’s sex. It’s was like he was admitting he needed The Girlfriend Experience without saying it. He missed what I was providing…I was that consistent girlfriend – I listened, I was a companion when needed and then we had amazing sex. I held back for quite a while. He lays it on thick. I fall for it at times and then I pull back. This time I really pulled back and called him out on somethings and ended it. He clearly didn’t like it and had a textbook response. He was silent for a week, invited me to a lunch after that week where he ignored me the entire time and spoke to our other coworker about his incredible new house he’s buying and other things in an attempt to make me jealous, I think. That night he sent a text to say it was nice to see me doing well today. Considering my last email lunch was good. We don’t talk. Fine by me. (He invited me to lunch and then ignored me then blames me?!) I replied in a neutral way and said it sounded like great things were on the horizon for him and to have a nice night. The he says “Good things happening for ALL of us. You too!” I thought he as referring to work so I clarified that I was talking about his house. He replies with “I never know what you are talking about….until you get pissed. Then and only then are you clear. I was saying you have good things going too with the boys. Glad to see you happy. Simple.”

    Now silent again. Right now I think he is in a frenzy because I’ve rejected him and he’s making me suffer in silence. I NEVER reach out to him. Never. In every waiting game he plays, he’s always the one who caves in. He can’t last more than two weeks normally before the “I miss you’s” come…He’s stalking my facebook page, I can see. I don’t think I’m ever going to be free of him. I’m one of the few people in the company that unfortunately understands him. He’s a little more pissed off this time but I don’t think I’m being discarded. For some reason, I really don’t think he has someone else. I think he would like to and is obsessed with women but is too high up in our company to risk it. Not to mention everyone thinks he’s an asshole – super smart – but an asshole.

    He’s been married to his wife for over 20 years. Travels more than anyone in the company. Current house is paid for, cars are paid for. Helps support his aging mother. He more than carries his weight that way. On the flip, he is text book when it comes to the rest of N descriptors.

    I’m writing all of this to say…no matter how much I’ve read and videos I’ve watched I am still a sap that holds out some kind of hope that it will eventually click. There is just something about him that I cannot let go. I am afraid it will haunt me for the rest of my life.

  31. I wish I hadn’t read this because I had assumed it’s finally a discard (or escape). But it’s extremely clear I’ve not been. I can cope with most things, partner cheating and all sorts of abuse, but not the silent treatment. I’m trying to think back through my life to see why I am this way.

    It’s the first (and I hope last) time he has doled out the silent treatment and I did the initially apologising, promising never to behave that way again. However, I said them simply because I sensed that’s what he wanted to hear. I didn’t actually go through any of the thought processes and it wasn’t done the normal “empath way”. But like all other empathy, I wanted the silent treatment to end. This is before I up on the silent treatment.

    It was barely 24 hours (he was probably thinking he would do it a few days as I sounded so desperate and text / calls became more frequent). For me, as it wasn’t done emotionally but rather methodically what I sensed and assumed he wanted in order to end the silence, something just snapped and suddenly I no longer craved him sexually as I had done, I blocked him and changed all contact (just to annoy him should he ever try to get in touch and to show all my friends and family that I had been involved with a psycho – amusing how many people ask as soon as you change your contact details as an empath because I have many genuine concerned friends and family).

    I suddenly realised this weekend that I hardly think about him now (where before I enjoyed him being in my head all the time) and it’s only been two weeks since the silent treatment. He’s out of my life and I feel – from passion and full on infatuation – to now, nothing at all for him. There are other reasons too why I snapped but the silent treatment was the main trigger. He’s lost out on a very loyal fuel source, he could’ve beaten me up, engaged me in the worse sexual acts, slept with another woman in front of me and I would’ve been ok, but silent treatment – I’m out! Lol.

    I actually started searching up on these again because I miss this, not him, I miss the whole psycho/narc thing (I don’t miss him at all) so this site is providing me with my addiction fix! I’m now reading the sex and narc book now as I was addicted to him sexually and trying to understand how he did it. It does make me want to go out and search out another elite narc just for the amazing initial sexual encounter we had. (Kidding!)

    1. Reading back, I sounded so calm and in control. I wasn’t. I was an emotional heap of mess. I was the perfect fuel source – I was always hurt, confused (still am), I loved, or rather was infatuated, I desired, I missed him all the time, I didn’t know what he is and didn’t bother to research it (despite him telling me explicitly, all the time what he actually is), I sympathised, gave genuine admiration and praise.

      But something about me, maybe the confusion within me (some sort of identity disorder), how complacent I’ve become to this sort of abuse and how much I craved it, always overrides these emotions I feel inside and makes me unpredictable and contradictory, thus not providing him regularly with the reaction he needed. I had really wanted him to keep going. Even if he comes back now I doubt it would be the same now as something had snapped within me. I won’t enjoy it the same now.

      One day I hope to figure out what I am. My journey has only just begun and currently I’m enjoying learning about narcs on this site from HG because I enjoyed my relationship so much with a man who is identical to Tudor himself.

  32. So what if you were told the former relationship is over but you do not block us? Is that still a discard? And why are we not blocked?

    1. If you escape and end the formal relationship and we do not block you that is because we will be looking to hoover you as a consequence of your treacherous escape.

  33. Do the same principles apply for a woman with (possibly) BPD?..
    im seeing some things that are similar like the lenghtening of the ST between episodes (first a few days, then a week, a month, and so on) and i see more intensity in this last (or maybe final?) ST. the previous ST were when she broke up with me for something i did, she answered a few mails over the time, but this time i told her off because of some nasty things being done to me (being “friends” (even when i gave her an engagement ring), insults, name calling, going with other guys in my face, no win situations, etc..) and the ST got worse now that im blocked from everywhere, hasnt answered any mail, literally no closure, just vanished. thanks.

    1. There could be an applicability when similar behaviour is deployed by someone with BPD as they have narcissistic traits also.

  34. Funny I’m narcissist and I dated another narcissist and there was a silent threatment between us both. She replied the last and didn’t wanted to make the first contact. But I did then, after 4 days. It was mistake probably. But she responded and told me why I was pissed off she didn’t contacted me, and she could be pissed off to me too.. A week later I broke up with her because of her bitchy behaviour, (something bad happened on the day that hurted her ego, ofc it was unrelated to me). I created drama, when we were hanging out later this day with her friends, it was my kind of revenge to her. The next day I deleted her and blocked her on facebook and even refused to do some kind of stuff i promised to do for her the next week. Then ST for almost month. Now we are talking to each other again, but really don’t know if it’s really good idea to get back together.

  35. HG, I need your opinion please. I had been certain I was discarded, but after reading this, I am beginning to wonder if perhaps I am in a lengthy AST instead. After sending the letter to my greater narc telling him I was tired of him treating me like shit and that I wasn’t going to let him hurt me anymore, he responded in what I feel was anger, saying he would keep his word to make time to talk with me. That was five weeks ago. I have not heard from him at all, but I also have not been blocked in any way. We are still friends on Facebook and he still follows me on Instagram. In fact, he is always sure to check my Instagram stories. What does that mean?

  36. Wow, I’m learning that this is my 53 year old ex boyfriend. I feel quite sickened that I allowed myself to be subjected to this for 18 months. Now I’m out of it, I’m grateful for all articles on this subject. In ‘brief’, my ex is a narcissictic, passive-aggressive, insecure, highly sensitive commitment-phobe! I’ve had a lucky escape. And, I thank you for your candid post; I can on imagine, that, as a narcissist, this was not easy for you to acknowledge and then to tell the ultimate on yourself.

  37. Hi HG, interesting, I posted a second question about where I am in the cycle, but you did not want to post it here. I wonder, why is that? Is it to have me question why? Did that provide fuel for you to ‘punish’ me with, and to ignore, because you didn’t like what I wrote….?

    1. There is no motivation to ‘punish’ you as a tertiary source Diana. I do not recall the question. Do repeat the question and I shall endeavour to address it. It might not have been answered because the detail required would be better suited for a consultation.

  38. Hi HG, I broke up with my ex narc, after calling him out on the lies, inconsistencies etc, after telling him what I wanted (didn’t know he was a narc at this point). He said he didn’t want ‘it’, ‘it’ isn’t for him. I said we’re breaking up. After ten days, I messaged him with a rethink (yes, I know, I didn’t yet know he was a narc!). No reply. He posted a famous suicide spot on Facebook and I messaged him saying I was concerned that he’s ok, and happy. (I KNOW!!!). No reply. My sister sent him a message about it and he replied. Clearly, it was emotional manipulation. Three days after my message, he texted me, offering to take me home from my college course!!! I said that was nice but I didn’t need a lift, as I had my car with me. A few hours later, I offered to meet for a coffee during this week if he fancied. As you’ve guessed… reply! So, please, tell me, where am I in this narc’s phase?

    1. If you were the IPPS and you escaped him, there was no IGH thereafter. Accordingly, that suggests that he was on the cusp of appointing someone else as IPPS therefore he was untroubled by your escape. The silence for 10 days supports that along with his failure to reply to your messages. His text offering to take you home may have been purely a way of keeping you ‘onside’ (he may have even worked out you would not accept the offer of a lift so it was empty) because he does not want you interfering in his new golden period. Accordingly, he may well respond in a polite fashion with you to keep you from pestering further.

      If you were the IPSS then he was unconcerned by your escape, he shifted attention to a different IPSS and he is focused on that person (hence he has not responded to you) but his message about the lift was a conversational crumb to keep you onside and interested in case he decides to shift attention back to you again, but it appears to me that his efforts are being focused elsewhere.

      1. Thanks for that, so no worries for me about being hoovered, then? And, please remind me what the IGH is?

      2. You are welcome.

        1. There is unlikely to be a hoover in the immediate future but there will be thereafter, therefore it is unwise to consider you are not at risk of being hoovered.
        2. Initial Grand Hoover – see the book ‘No Contact’.

      3. Aha, now that I recall it, my IGH was last year when we broke up. He came rushing back in a torrent of text messages and a lengthy phone call. Ah, yes, I was swept off my feet then, not for the first time. This break up we just had seems rather dull in comparison.

      4. And BOOM! It happened a few moments ago. I had a feeling that ‘something’ was coming today, as I made a new, male, Facebook friend and he ‘liked’ a comment I made to a mutual friend. He sent me a text message that a family member has died. I’m doing nothing at present, but he knows I care, even referred to his relative as ‘uncle’, tho no one ever did!


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