Silent So Silent

silent

The use of and imposition of silence are two of the most powerful weapons in our abusive arsenal. Silence is easy to deploy and horrendously effective in securing our aims of compliance, control and fuel.

1. My silence is always meaningful

You may sit quietly because you have no need to say anything. You may remain silent because you are listening to somebody else or just enjoying the silence.  We do not allow silence to be used in such a passive and redundant fashion. Our silence is used to convey contempt. It is used to draw concern and cause anguish in you. When we fall silence that pregnant pause is an indicator of the fury which will be unleashed against you. The longer silence is the imposition of our cold fury as you are banished to a sustained silent treatment. When we sit in silence we are not savouring the lack of noise, we are thinking, planning and plotting, calculating our next step. Our silences are weapons, they are our operations headquarters, our defence against your critical wounding of us. We use silence to hurt you, warn you, scold you and indicate you have overstepped the mark. Every silence has a meaning, it would be remiss of us to use it any other way.

2. Absence makes the silence longer

The deployment of an absent silent treatment where we remove ourselves from you, invariably with no warning or indication is a confirmation to you that this silence treatment will not be short-lived. The need to absent ourselves sends you a clear signal that we will be gone for some time. It is designed to have you come after us, try to contact us and beg and plead so that you fuel us. When we impose a period of absence by vanishing we are reinforcing how easily we are able to consider you gone from our lives. You may not even be able to contact us but we gather fuel from our knowledge that this sudden disappearance will cause you considerable consternation and worry. The absent silent treatment is also a key indicator that we are engaged in the seduction of a new prospect and providing this person with our false love and attention, which we have removed from you.

3. The silent gesture

Our silences are not just occasioned by us not talking to you or absenting ourselves for a period of time. We deploy silence through gestures. We may not turn up when we have agreed to a date with you, in order to reinforce how your mean so little to us and that we have any number of more pressing engagements to attend to than dine with you in a restaurant. Leaving you alone in bed, our side of the bed now empty and cold is also a hammer blow to your confidence and self esteem as we choose the spare room, the sofa or the bed of another in preference to being with you during the night. The silent telephone call from a withheld number, used when we are hovering you, is designed to put you on edge. Is it us calling you this late? It must be mustn’t it, but you cannot be sure? The failure to buy you a gift on your birthday,  creating a gap which ought to have been filled stand out considerably and allows us to apply maximum hurt through such a silent gesture.

4. The silent presence

By giving you the cold shoulder when everyone else is met warmly and enthusiastically, we cause you to feel completely alone even when you are surrounded by others. You try to carry on as if nothing has happened but you know that people will be wondering why we are not speaking to you. You feel the flush of embarrassment as once again you try to speak to us and you receive only a glare and then we sweep away. You want to challenge us but as ever it is you that will be criticised for creating a scene. You want to upbraid us for our childish sulking but you have learned that the consequences of doing so are not worth suffering. We of course know all this and we know how powerful our freezing you out in the company of others really is.

5. Suffer in silence

You are never to speak of what goes on between you and I to anyone else. Should you ever do so you are committing an act of heinous betrayal and your punishment for such a transgression will be malicious and fierce. You are not to betray me and speak of what you are subjected to. You are to endure it so that you become a better person, one who is compliant and obedient. Do you understand? I also know that you fear the repercussions of speaking out and this enforces my curfew. I also know that you feel compelled to remain loyal because of the golden period and how you feel duty bound to remain and try to resolve matters, work this difficult period through and fix what has become somehow broken. Your indefatigable spirit teeters on the brink of misplaced pride at not telling tales and instead knuckling down, irrespective of what is thrown at you, in order to bring about a resolution to our problems. You cannot succeed but you do not know that yet. For now you must suffer in silence.

6. I speak, you stay silent

Never interrupt me, never talk over me, never steal my thunder. When I speak everybody listens because what I have to say is brilliant, great and of tremendous import. You would do well to listen to improve yourself, please me and avoid angering me. You are my sounding board, Horatio to my Hamlet, a listener and in my presence you only speak when it is required to honour my achievements and laud my greatness. You are to be seen but only heard when I deem in necessary. Who wants to listen to what you have to say anyway? You only get invited to events because of me. They are only friends with you because they are friends of mine. Nobody is interested in you. Nobody. So stay quiet and listen.

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37 thoughts on “Silent So Silent”

  1. Im getting silent treatment now for 2 weeks. I am able to contact him. However he replies selectively saying he is busy because kids are with him on holiday. He also says when he returns we can discuss us. Do you think that he is just blowing me off because he is with someone else? Do you think he is done with me?

    1. Absent silent treatments are usually used to cultivate other prospects, not always, but often. Is he done with you? No, we are never done with you.

      1. Can’t it become so bad that even the negative fuel ceases to be worth it? So you do reach a loint of being done?

      2. No Sarabella, if you keep providing negative fuel it is still fuel, what may happen of course is that the new primary source is embedded so we discard you and focus on them.

  2. HG what is the longest time that you have given someone silent treatment and what is the longest time that you have disengaged with someone?

    1. Present silent treatment – 2 days
      Absent silent treatment – 5 weeks

      By disengaged I assume you mean from last contact to hoovering? If so, 12 years.

      1. After 12 years? By tbat point, doesn’t pride kick in to show them you will never succumb again? If you don’t forgive and forget, why ever hoover after a long successful 12 year silent treatmen? What made you hoover? Any particular trigger?

      2. Whose pride? Theirs or mine?
        Why hoover? Fuel of course.
        What made me hoover? I learned that person had moved back to the city I live in through a friend, thus there was a hoover trigger and i was able to obtain contact details and thus (because of other factors too) the hoover execution criteria was met, so a hoover ensued.

      3. wow my present silent treatment record from him was… 6 weeks! but then oh beautiful 7weeks of golden period … nut because You tought me already everything I knew what I was dealing with… that was fascinating because having had a golden period reinstated after years of devaluation it’s amazing. .. and no it was not a respite period because I wasn’t low or depressed during silent treatment. .. I was the way You told me to be: happy living my life minding my own buissness…

      4. Your pride. To hoover after 12 years makes you… look weak. It shows your inherent need. Even after 12 years. That you gave in to your need from fuel from someone from so long ago. It seems counter intuitive to your superior status to go back to stale watering holes? If you want to make a statement that someone is no one to you, hoovering may mean fuel but it also seems to show your dependency. Or is the momentary appearance of weakness overshadowed by the thrill of being able to run another game on someone who never learned and tolerated scraps? How was the quality of fuel after so long? Did it ignite and burn out fast?

      5. I understand your point but from my perspective being able to hoover someone after a 12 year hiatus underlines my power. I was not weak to need fuel from someone form the past but rather powerful to be able to draw it forth again, form a source which might resist. It is not stale because hoover fuel is fresh and invigorating for reasons I have explained many times. Her fuel was excellent in the dose that I obtained from the hoover and was worth the effort.

        I know that it exhibits my dependency on fuel. That is inescapable.

    2. Then this explains his hoover after 30 years. And why no matter how ridiculous he sounded and acted again, his many grand statements of BYE you a crazy bipolar person (after provoking me), there always, always followed a door that was reopened by him. He always planted his, ‘just in cases’. They never meant a thing. Nor did he. Sad.

      Well, all the doors are now shut. I can only assume he thinks he won and a cracked door is still available to him. He won’t get near me again based on what you are saying about time. It has no relevancy at all… That is the part I was stuck on. How he even hurt me so badly again. Why would anyone ‘come back’ only to do all that hurt and rejection again. Because time had no meaning to him It wasn’t about time and change amd personal growth.

      Is there any negative supply so ‘bad’, too negative, even you would never rehoover?

      1. Wow, thank you, that was direct. He led me to believe once that I finally had crossed a line when I brought up a few issues. According to that moment, I had finally reached his limit, crossed a line where words cut so hard and there is no return. Unfortunately, I reached out to him after a personal tragedy, but suddenly, the line was gone. Suddenly, we are good, on good terms, let’s not revisit the past, and of course, he did nothing wrong. That was the trigger for me and another round of fighting slowly started.

        Once again, I crossed yet another line. It was at first really confusing, then it seemed to get ridiculous at how illogical it was. Now I guess it makes sense….

        And is the addictive part for you provoking more and more so that the fuel does get more and more negative? Like getting bored by lower negative fuel and needing more and more intense fuel? It seemed that way. His absurd factor seemed to just keep going up. The devaluations becoming more rapid and the level of energy they generated getting more intense. There was no respite or even pretend of going back to any golden period. It was like we were burning all bridges between us. He was saying I was harassing him and it sure seemed to look that way. That is how twisted it got. Maybe there was some truth in that but it was also his way of denying never causing me that much harm or hurt. I was harrassing him for answers and the truth. Never getting none was there because nothing was ever true or real. The seduction had always been based on lies.

  3. You are to be seen and not heard. Hammered into us constantly as children. Silence was double edged- calm was a relief, but yes, it was always before a storm.

  4. Mr HG Tudor,

    First of all I would really like to thank you for the content on this site and applaud for your courage to present the facts and truths which we cannot see. Happy New Year!

  5. I dated my Narc 3 months. The devaluation had already begun and I was draining out. I have a habit of pursuing long vacations whenever I experience intense stress. After 3 episodes of silent treatment, I suggested him to plan a vacation exclusively for us. He denied it and denied any possibility of stress between us. Said he needed time for himself and nothing is wrong. I believed him and booked a 10 day trip with my girlfriends maintaining honest and clear communication with him.
    I was eager to share my experiences on my return from vacation. Guess what. The whole scene changed. He friendzone me and had already smeared that I deserted him. Initially I was angry. Now I have accepted the fact and ready to let go. But he still wants to be in touch and yet friendzoned! Why would he not let me go if I don’t serve him?

  6. Thinking about the silent treatment a bit more leads me to a memory and question for HG. My father employed this tactic often on my mother but mainly in places he felt like no one would call him out. At home around us kids, fair game. At restaurants, fair game. At his parents’ home, fair game. However, he “thought” he could do this one day at my maternal grandmother’s home and she very quickly caught on and in her polite yet no BS way of speaking, she called him out on it. I was about 23 at the time and listened from the other room and tried not to fall out of my chair laughing. Well, after she ever so sweetly told him off, he walked out of her home leaving us all then laughing hysterically. He NEVER was anything less than perfectly polite after this incident when in her presence. He was never snippy with her, never tried any of his BS on her, nothing, ever. So what gives? Was this an act of “respect?” And even more interesting is that when this grandmother’s health started failing, it was my father who doted over her like she was his own mother. No one who saw it ever had an unkind word to say about his excellent care for her. My mother, her N daughter, wanted nothing to do with her during her final days on earth. Again, what gives?

  7. Classic line of narcs,”everyone has always left me.”
    Perfect to use on us empaths. We will endure all and stay to prove that we will never leave them.
    I asked a friend of mine the other day, “why didn’t you stop me and make me see?” He said,”you were not yourself. He had you totally brainwashed.”
    Not anymore. So glad I found H.G Tudor. I thought I was insane for awhile.

  8. My ex told me many times that she didn’t need me and that she could easily walk away from me at any time. I thought that was so silly and asked over and over “why”. I couldn’t understand why anyone would say that to their friend.
    I remember searching “how can people just walk out of someone’s life” on the Internet. This was a repeated threat and I really believed she would disappear one day. I always thought it was because she had been hurt before and couldn’t trust.
    This was my biggest fear that she planted from the beginning. But she also planted that “everyone in my life ends up leaving me” to make me feel guilty in the end.
    And I also got everything else on your list.
    Your explanations on silent treatments made me realize what she was and brought me the understanding I needed on this topic.
    No one else could have explained it to me.

  9. http://youtu.be/bG5N3GC-m20

    “‘Cause teacher (dear G)
    There are things that I don’t want to learn
    And the last one I had
    Made me cry
    So I don’t want to learn to
    Hold you, touch you
    Think that you’re mine
    Because it ain’t no joy
    For an uptown boy (girl)
    Whose teacher has told him goodbye, goodbye, goodbye”

    George Michael – One More Try Lyrics | MetroLyrics

  10. My narc used the absent silent treatment often. And i must suffer in silence. He said if i tell anybody, i would lose him😔
    After 2.5 yrs, i ended up telling pple. Then i escaped. But he hoovered and wanted me back.

    “I’ve had enough of danger
    And people on the streets
    I’m looking out for angels
    Just trying to find some peace
    Now I think it’s time
    That you let me know
    So if you love me
    Say you love me
    But if you don’t just let me go”

    George Michael – One More Try Lyrics | MetroLyrics

    RIP George Michael 😢

  11. HG,
    My biggest confusion here is we were best friends for 15 years. He has discarded in all the ways you described over the years but always returned.
    I moved far away 2 years ago…he discarded me once after the move but returned to speaking to me everyday, calling, writing….but now, since this last discard it’s been 9 months of solid NC. He could hoover, he doesn’t.
    He said it’s time to close this chapter.
    He’s never used that indefinate final type of language before.

    But I feel he knows he’s losing me, I’m drifting away and we’re becoming strangers so he must truly be done this time as its never gone as long as 9 months. I’m so confused as to why he could ditch a 15 year friendship and let it go forever.
    Why?

  12. My father used the silent treatment often on my mother at the dinner table. I could always feel the fury thick in the air. As she was a fellow narc, he the greater, she the lesser, I cannot say she didn’t deserve it nor benefit from it. She did, on both counts.

  13. My mum was the queen of the silent treatment. When she was angry or displeased she would ignore and slam kitchen cupboards and stomp around. She had my stepdad cowering down to her and my brother asking what was wrong and kissing her butt.
    Shes also very good at ignoring and pretending she didnt hear you. My point of view was never important to her she would constantly minimize anything id bring up.
    My narcs inplemented it in standing me up which he knows causes me huge anxiety.

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