Love is a Taught Construct



How do you know how to love? Did you sit wide-eyed in front a large screen as colourful costumed characters hugged one another to a saccharine sound-track so this imbued you with the concept of what love was? Did those cartoon characters explain to you what it is to love? Did their exaggerated voices and crazy antics, followed by the moral of the story teach you what love is? Perhaps you read about it in love, heard it in songs and studied the many ways in which this ultimate emotion appears and affects people. Chances are that you have been affected by those hugely affecting passages from the great works dedicated to love. Chances are you have been captured by haunting lyrics and catchy jingles which also profess to tell you what love is. They have all played a part. You may have learned about love from the version churned out by the media, of Hollywood romance, dashing heroes, fair maidens, tarts with golden hearts, the good man who rides to the rescue, the wayward soul saved by love. Love may have been explained to you from the pulpit as a higher love, something which transcends all earthly manifestations, a love so powerful and complete that it sacrificed its only son in order to demonstrate its love for humankind. This godly love is all around you, it touches each and all and is mighty in its effects. Love may have been learned from furtive fumbles down alleyways, sneaking into bedrooms when so young, the exploration of warm and urgent body parts accompanied by those every so sincere protestations of love. A haphazard journey through galloping teen years as nothing and everything makes sense all at once. Then again, love might have appeared to you in the form of something small and furry, an unconditional (so long as it was fed) love which was loyal, giving and ever so cute. So many erudite tutors, learned lecturers and wise proponents of what love is. Love thy neighbour, love yourself, love is all you need, woman in love, it must have been love, crazy little thing called love, to know him is to love him, we found love, how deep is your love? Love is all around us, in us, between us, lifting us up and letting us down. It is everywhere and you may well have been taught by many of the above and more besides as to what love is.

However, love most likely will have been taught to you by those who created you, those two people who came together and through their own pleasure created you. Two people who decided that they would shoulder the responsibility of creating life, nurturing it and bringing a new person into the world. Those two people accepted many, many responsibilities from such a decision and act. Chief among them was the responsibility of teaching that person what love is. Through their offices they have furnished each and every one of us with the notion of what love is. A deep-seated and visceral understanding of this is how love feels, this is what it looks like, this is what it sounds like. This is love. From those two people more than anything else we are first grounded in the concept of what love is. This grounding lasts a considerable time and whilst there are other factors to be considered, as I have mentioned above, it is this lesson which is learnt invariably first and the one lesson which resonates beyond all others. So often we are in their hands when it comes to being taught about love. So, what is this taught love? It has so many, many facets.

Love is being told to never trust anybody.

Love is being made to re-write the entire essay because of one spelling mistake.

Love is being sent to stand outside on a cold winter’s day until all three verses of Ode to Autumn are recited correctly.

Love is knowing nothing is ever good enough.

Love is understanding that someone else knows better than you what is best for you.

Love is turning away from the reality.

Love is standing straight against a wall for several hours for speaking out of turn.

Love is for the weak.

Love is being told that when I am gone nobody else will look out for you.

Love is succeeding.

Love is building a wall as high as possible.

Love is trying until it hurts and gaining that final curt nod of approval.

Love is being seen and not heard.

Love is fulfilling your potential and securing that legacy.

Love is hurting you even though it hurts me, but someone in this household has to do it and it won’t be him will it?

Love is reading to yourself than being read to.

Love is living in the shadows and hoping not to be noticed.

Love is being the best.

Love is the preserve of the powerful.

Love is being denied a birthday party because the other children are too stupid.

Love is being undermined in order to prevent conceit.

Love is a begrudged recognition and the injunction to try harder, go further, climb higher, run faster, study longer.

Love is burning your hand but not crying.

Love is don’t tell anybody about our secret.

Love is a righteous beating.

Love is being distant and pretending things never happened.

Love is being sent away.

Love is not being told.

Love is splendid isolation.

Love was taught this way.

117 thoughts on “Love is a Taught Construct

  1. Mona says:

    HG, I would go further. I believe, that not only love is a taught construct, it is empathy too. It is not a natural, inherent trait in everyone. Many “normals” are only “educated” in empathy. Many of them would not feel it, if they were not taught it. It would be interesting to take look at science. There is much more so called cognitive empathy in the world than people believe. So, if it was not taught, the world would be a crueler place to live in. Many show empathy, because it is expected, but it is not their real feeling or they believe it is their real feeling.

  2. Star says:

    A very brave and a very vulnerable written piece HG. Reading this, my heart hurts for multiple of reasons…I do wish you true happiness and peace, whatever that looks like for you.

  3. I loved more than anything that sad little abused boy inside my narc. It was the darkside of him that attracted me the most, I craved his shadow side more than anything. In fact I was amused and flummoxed by the lovebombing phase…. total turn off for me and indeed I was actually dating several other men during that time because I thought he was a douche because of it… I hate facade, and he was a sad caricature of himself…. a “Trump” like being. It wasn’t until I started to see the narcissitic rage in him, and he showed me his sadistic side and his perverse proclivities that I became far more interested and then fell in love. Now here was something dark and messy to muck about with I thought. And why would I prefer evil over light? Well mainly as I embrace and wrestle my own shadow that I couldn’t see myself mirrored in him until I saw the darkness come out…. I liked his void of nothingness because I knew that he was then capable of handling my overflowing and profuse torrential flow of rage, emotions, passion and drama. Most normal men run like hell at the first sign, but he stayed and came back for more and more and more …. and so we danced with each other like sadomasochistic partners in a demon waltz. It was exhilarating. That is also why I wanted to destroy his marriage in an attempt to tear down his carefully constructed facade…. It seemed absurd to me that he could want that ridiculous conventional construct when the dark, torrid demon within him was so much more interesting and exciting and in my opinion presented a life far more interesting life to live in.

  4. dhawkes67 says:

    This is one of my favorite writings of yours so far. It is so dark and profound. I have read it several times. I can ‘feel’ your words.
    BTW, your books have helped me tremendously when I was climbing out of the web and licking my wounded heart.
    I continue to read your posts because I am so fascinated and I love your writing style.
    Thank you

    1. HG Tudor says:

      That you DH67.

      1. dhawkes67 says:

        I hate to ask but, I noticed you are very articulate in your responses. At first I thought it was a typo, but a perfectionist wouldn’t let that happen. Am I overthinking?

  5. J.R. says:

    Love, in action & as intended, has been distorted like most other things as we live in a corrupt world.
    Real Love & freedom is revealed in the Original Source & His construct.
    This is the battle my exN is in & I believe it will restore him. 🙏🏻

  6. Bette says:

    Dear Tudor,
    Your family sounds like it was similar to my former husband’s.
    For years I thought my situation was worse than his because
    my parents were very overt in their abuse. But in his case,
    his abuse was quite as bad (he only shared this many years
    later during a crisis) but in a different sort of way. It was ugly
    but controlled abuse unlike the crazy out of control abuse I
    experienced. His family maintained a perfect facade to the world
    my own did not and it was much easier to reject their reality as a
    result. My ex was unable to reject his families warped values as everyone was constantly reinforcing their “goodness’ throughout his childhood.

    I really do get why that kind of unresolved trauma results in narcissism
    or psychopathy. Dealing with CPTSD and becoming an inveterate people pleaser is no way to live. I don’t think there is anything noble about helping/staying with people who trash you continually. That’s just
    being a fool and abusive to yourself. Fight, flight, freeze or fawn. Narcissists choose fight, co-dependents chose fawn. IMHO both are shitty choices made as a child and carried into adulthood with
    disastrous results.

  7. Not So Sad says:

    Should’ve asked in my last post HG .

    You call your psychologists ” The good doctors ” but they never the less the same .
    So in effect you’re going through the same ” emotional pain & turmoil as victims of narcassism do ?”

    It’s been a long day, forgive me if I’m rambling again .

    1. HG Tudor says:

      I don’t understand what you mean by reference to the doctors, NSS.

  8. BraveHeart says:

    Also, I too, am sincerely sorry for the hell you’ve had to endure throughout your life!

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Thank you BH, it’s not hellish all of the time.

      1. BraveHeart says:

        I’m sure not, now that you’re older, wiser and more powerful. I should have said, throughout your childhood. 🙂

  9. BraveHeart says:

    The truth is, no one ever taught me what love was; and I never really understood that until now. I had to go through the worst experience of my life to find your site, HG, before finally realizing it’s time to start teaching myself (with your help, of course), for myself.

    1. Victory says:

      Braveheart, I feel the same way. Now knowing I was raised by a Narc, I learned love was being controlled & painful. This blog has allowed me to learn my own truth & my own ways to love & be loved. Thank you for sharing.

      1. BraveHeart says:

        Thank “you”, for sharing, as well, Victory! It’s an empowering feeling once we finally learn our own truth and the way we love and are loved, isn’t it? It’s an achievement like no other. 🙂

        1. BH and V,
          How have you learned love and to understand it BH and V how has this blog taught you how to love? The only love I have ever known is for my son and it is familial. I’d really like to know because I don’t understand the concept of love and I don’t recall HG teaching it. I understand infatuation. I’m seriously asking so if you could please expand on your thoughts I’d like to hear them please.

          1. Victory says:

            ABB, like BH, By learning about narcissim through this blog I’ve learned to identify them, how they operate & affect me. HG has taught me about empaths & why they seek us & what to look for to keep my boundaries in tact no matter what! This new strength & confidence in myself has allowed me to do the work to grow. My mother started telling me @ 4yrs old I was “too sensitive” which made my empathy a flaw. I’ve also learned the narcissist manipulations against my intuition which screamed at me the entire time and I now know those are my gifts and they need to be harnessed and protected. I’ve also learned the difference between real self esteem & self confidence versus false arrogance & conceit like the narcissist have. Have patience, keep learning, this takes time. I’m over a year out of the relationship, just under a year of no contact & finding this blog. I still struggle with ever presence. But I know what I’m fighting thanks to HG’s writings. That is 1/2 the battle. I’m am & will win head versus heart & with only minor actions knowing the pillars have taken over the battlefield & he has retreated. Hang in there!

      2. BraveHeart says:

        ABB, I, personally, am speaking of love for myself. Learning who I am as a Super Empath Supernova (from HG) has taught me that I am perfectly fine just as I am and I don’t need to change for anyone. I will always be empathic; however, as I’ve also learned from HG, I know now what boundaries I need to set for myself and why it’s so important that I don’t allow anyone to change, move or break those boundaries. As far as love for others, I too, have familial love for my kids and grand kids, however, I know right now that I am nowhere near ready to try loving anyone other than myself. I know what I expect, and will not put up with ever again (thanks to HG), in a relationship, but for now I’m just enjoying finally getting to know myself for the first time in my life and that, above all, I can thank HG for. Not sure if that answered your question, but hopefully, it did.

  10. Empath23 says:

    Hi HG,
    I pray you’re able to change your mind one day.
    Forgiving her doesn’t mean that you accept her behavior, nor does it mean you have to have a relationship with her.
    I understand it’s harder for others, but letting go of all the negatives feelings you have towards her would help you immensely.

    “Not forgiving someone is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die.“ ~ Unknown

    1. HG Tudor says:

      I appreciate your sentiments Empath23.

      1. Empath23 says:

        From the bottom of my heart, I wish you the best HG. 💜
        You are worthy of true and lasting love.
        I hope you find fulfilling happiness that never ends and one day leave the haunting memories and the damage done by the MatriNarc far behind.

  11. Not So Sad says:

    HG the recent story line on the ” Archers ” ( Radio4) features an abusive narcissist. It’s been running for quite some time it’s really well portrayed & well researched.

    A few months ago the narcs father was featured & he himself was an emotional abuser to both to his wife & the narc featured, one thing that struck me though is that as abusive as the narcs been throughout to everyone around him. once his father made an appearance in the drama the narc couldn’t stand up to him & in effect was victim to his father ..
    My questions are : Is this how you act when your in your mothers company? as in compliant ,walking on eggshells so as not to upset her? unable to say what you really think ? trying to keep the peace & agreeing with everything she says even if you disagree ?

    My thoughts are at the moment anyway, that narcs are made as you were by circumstance beyond their control . You didn’t receive the love & nurturing that you craved & continuously strived for .

    Could it be that when someone starts to love you , you fear rejection so you push them away or maybe you punish them for your mothers failings ? I’m no psychologist as you know & these are just my thoughts which you’ve probably answered a million times before but thought Id ask anyway .

    P.S I had a similar relationship with my mother & walked away from it . I stopped trying to make her love me when it should’ve come naturally . I haven’t seen or spoken to her in nearly 20 years even though she lives locally . As a result my siblings & my dad took her side .

    Maybe that’s why I’m an emapth .. Rambling now sorry !

    PPS . Your mothers a feking cow btw ! x

    Not So Sad .

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Hello NSS, yes i actually heard the episode where, is it Rob (?) was injured as everything came to a head when he would not let his partner leave the house. I thought they wrote it rather well. Has he been labelled as a narcissist or not?

      I used to behave in that way, it was akin to her appearing like some kind of Kryptonite as I was taken back to be being a boy. It was a terrible experience. I felt myself draining away. I do not do so any longer as a consequence of understanding more about what she is and what I am.

      Perhaps I do fear rejection on some level, I know I fear the loss of fuel.

      1. Not So Sad says:

        Hi HG,

        Ty for your reply .

        Yes it is Rob & yes narcissistic traits have been mentioned.

        It’s been quite fascinating listening to the drama unfold because I can relate to everything I’ve read and learned here & when I listened to his father I thought about you and you’re relationship with your mother.

        I mean not straight away obviously but it made me reflect . … 🙂

        Hope you don’t mind me posting a link to the story so far but every red flag & narcissistic trait is there.

        You’re analogy of ” Kryptonite” is sad to read because in a way that’s how abuse effects all victims . We darn’t anything to upset our abuser & do everything to please them ..

        HG v Matrinarc ?

        Nor So Sad x

        1. HG Tudor says:

          Not at all. I was driving to a meeting. I tend to like to listen to the afternoon play and the Archers precedes it. I don’t follow the Archers but I catch the occasional episode from time to time. I do remember thinking when Rob was telling Helen she would be nothing without him, that the writer had articulated that mindset well in what Rob said to her.

      2. foolme1time says:

        I was like that with my sister! Still am from time to time! So many in my life I did not realize! Until you HG! I think no I believe someday you will overcome all of this! Thank you! I have a long way to go, but I am getting there! Xxx

  12. jarwithaheavylid says:

    Thank you for your answer.

    But now, like any addiction, you don’t need it anymore to protect yourself. So…, time to commit yourself somewhere and see how that turns out? What’s the worst thing that could happen, with no supply, eh? What’s your biggest fear? A bad trip? Insanity?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Why do you say I do not need it anymore Jar. I do.
      What is the worst thing that could happen? I cease to exist as I wish to exist, I become depressed, I lose my mind, there are many downsides.

      1. daydreamer says:

        Are you sure you’re not my narc in hiding?

        Depression. That’s his reason/excuse for everything.

        The disappearing. The moods, the sex talk on Twitter with other women.

        He’s trying to fight his depression so I need to support him and understand

        1. HG Tudor says:

          Hello DD, I am sure enough.

          I take it that last sentence is what he said to you, rather than a statement of intent on your part?

          1. daydreamer says:

            Yes all his words..

      2. jarwithaheavylid says:

        Because you’ve said you’re addicted to power. So what you’re saying is that you don’t want to give up that power, give up that lifestyle, give up not knowing anybody and nobody knowing you? Not even yourself?

        Do you need it? How can you really know that? You don’t know what will happen. That’s exciting. Think of the worst thing to happen as penance.

        Have you done Byron Katie’s Maybe you should try some turnarounds and challenge your beliefs. We can all challenge our beliefs from time to time.

      3. bananasareberries1 says:

        Have you had suffer from depression as an adult HG? Have you been on treatment? Please just ignore that question is it is to personal. My former narc friend was depressed and most likely abusing sleeping pills and alcohol. Did you ?

        1. HG Tudor says:

          No I haven’t BAB1. You are quite at liberty to ask.
          There are those of our kind who suffer from depression because they are either Victim Narcissists and/or it is a consequence of low fuel levels.
          I don’t abuse or use sleeping pills.
          I enjoy drinking. I do not drink every day and I enjoy a session but I never go overboard as I like to remain in control.

      4. Laura says:

        Hi HG,

        Your soul did the only thing available to it at the time. I suspect that had there been much of anyone else around in your life , even one person, authentically and meaningfully giving you the love, warmth, respect, kindness, dignity, and validation every child must have, it would not have been necessary for your soul to respond like it did. You had no choice then and I believe you still do not have a choice. I think you are getting closer to this point though in your own way and the way you know it must happen. I am in awe of your courage and strength. You know what you need in order to be able to let go of the demons your family created, to create yourself from scratch and give to yourself what you never got, and who your friends in this process are and aren’t. You can and will do this because the truth of your childhood/present life is alive in you and you also know it profoundly to be true that you deserve so much more for your life. With my greatest respect, Laura

        1. MLA - Clarece says:

          Hi Laura,
          Your post was very interesting to me bringing up HG’s soul reacting, in a way, to his childhood situation as you refer to it doing the only thing available at the time.
          I was recently reading about a form of transpersonal therapy which incorporates a psycho-spiritual component to healing. On a spiritual level, if cognitive dissonance takes place because of severe abuse, it can also be deemed as soul loss or soul defilement. In essence the core of one’s being is fragmented. This therapy uses indivduation to integrate the conscious with the unconscious for self-actualization to take place. Basically the wounds kept buried in the subconscious that play round and round causing one to repeat destructive patterns, are brought to the surface in the conscious moment to be dealt with and then moving forward to heal from. Then creating “soul retrieval”. Some believe that this step incorporating a spiritual side to the healing (not religious) is the final step in making victims finally feel whole again.
          That’s a pretty basic synopsis, but pretty interesting.
          HG, maybe your soul can be retrieved after all with the good doctors?

          1. foolme1time says:

            I’ve heard of this and also thought of HG! I don’t know if his Doctors do this type of healing ( spiritual) or not? In the Native world spiritual healing comes in many ways and many forms! He may believe his soul has left him, but you and I plus many others know it is still in there hiding perhaps, scared maybe? But it is still in there waiting to be healed and released! I believe this and I believe in HG! Have a good night Clarece. 😘

          2. MLA - Clarece says:

            It’s hard to say what may still truly be buried deep inside. Whenever it exactly was the HG dissociated, he altered the way he functions and behaves in order to survive and created the machine of a man that he is. But I do believe that the “nurture” aspect also molded him. I think there is little HG buried in his subconscious needing his voice heard and validated. If that could someone be integrated, then maybe some of the fragmentation can get sealed over. Can never be shiny new. But maybe someday it could allow HG to not need the negative fuel or have the malice and contempt subside?

          3. Jenna says:

            Soul retrieval – this sounds hopeful. My heart bleeds for HG sometimes.

  13. daydreamer says:

    My Narc was mentally abused and beaten by his farther. He never felt love. That’s why I fight so hard to show him that I’m not leaving him and I love him. But then he hurts me with his manipulation. That’s why I keep forgiving him. He was conditioned to not show love or weakness when love is all he desires.

    This is where I wonder is I am co-dependant.

    1. bananasareberries1 says:

      Looks you are daydreamer. What is missing here is a healthy selfishness. I am happy I do have that in me. I will not make attempt to fix any of those people. Love does not fix people. Therapy does.

  14. daydreamer says:

    Can Narcissits get their heartbroken?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      No, just the collapse of our construct.

      1. Debbie says:

        I disagree. Surely your heart was broken as you endured abuse. A broken heart is to feel anguish and loss. You fear loss of fuel now..this is to be heartbroken. Empty and depressed. That is a broken heart. To fear loss of a construct…ok… then so as to be thrown into the maelstrom ..unsettled and unstable…feels like a broken heart to me! You dont have to be all loved up to have your heart broken. There are many reasons why and how it happens. How shall we count the ways…Its too black and white to say no.
        However if you are referring purely to romance etc.. maybe it is more relevant to acknowledge that you will not fall in love and therefore wont get hurt. Im an empath. I too can say that. I dont fall in love all over the place far from it..
        These things are not set in stone. No one knows what you, or any of us, walk toward. Love isnt the enemy… abuse was and is.
        Keep working…

        1. HG Tudor says:

          I wasn’t a narcissist then Debbie. I was answering as to whether narcissists can have their hearts broken.

          I do not regard the loss of fuel as equating to being heart broken. But I can see how it is a matter of perspective.

  15. Victory says:

    I never thought through the process I would discover I was raised by a Matri-Narc. I was identified as a gifted intelligent child ( I skipped several grades in school) & from the moment I told my mother at 8 years old she has been destroying my self esteem. This is the wound the Narcs were getting in through. The sentence “love is being undermined in order to prevent conceit” is my story. As recently as 3 months ago I was told “you’re not as smart as you think you are.” (I’m working on an advanced degree) As I countered “no I’m even smarter” she of course went for “now your arrogant.” I have cut off all communication except for family holidays with her and never felt better about and believed in myself more. I came here seeking healing from a shattered heart & discovered the key to my own greatness & destiny. While my success is & will be of my creation, thank you for pointing me in the right direction. Amusingly, I am reading Emotional Intelligence for my studies. I keep thinking “except for the narcissist” as I read. A thank you to other answer seekers on this blog for letting me know I’m not crazy & I’m not alone.

    1. NarcAngel says:

      I see forgiving as weakness and only hear the last part. Whenever someone says they forgive, what I hear is: I GIVE.

  16. Empath23 says:

    I was taught that love was physical/mental abuse and neglect.
    I won’t go into detail, but my life was a living hell until I moved out at 18.
    Because I knew first hand what it felt like to feel worthless and unloved, I decided I would try my best to never intentionally cause pain to anyone and to be the parent to my children that I always wanted and needed.
    It literally hurts my heart to know someone is suffering. This is exactly how Mr. Coral snake slithered into my life. He played the victim and I feel for that shit, hook line and sinker.

    1. Empath23 says:

      H.G, do you think you will ever be able to forgive MatriNarc?
      For me, forgiveness played a huge role in healing. Once I learned to view my parents as flawed humans and realised their behaviour had nothing to do with who I was a person, things became much easier.
      I wasn’t always this empathetic, I was actually quite a selfish little bitch but somehow I grew out of it. Forgiving them (especially my father) was a major turning point in my life.

      Sometimes we have to forgive those whom we will never received an apology from, but we do it for ourselves, not for them.
      I hope one day you can forgive her, for your own sake.

      1. HG Tudor says:

        Hello Empath 23,

        Not a chance of that happening.

        1. bananasareberries1 says:

          You don’t have to forgive. Forgiveness is overrated indeed. You will be fine without it HG. Just keep doing what you are doing. You are smart you will find your way to healing. I laughed when you said you don’t trust your doctors. I would not either. Especially that you did not valunteer for that therapy (by the way I am intrigued by how that happened but I understand that how that therapy was forced on you must remain a secret). You, with a help of docs will figure your best way out. No guarantees exist in life but hope is enough at this stage.

  17. nikitalondon says:

    😓 soo sad .. agree with comment above. Whomever can love a child with gentleness and kindness should be infertile…

  18. This is heart-wrenching. Pple who cannot nurture a child should be made infertile. The child did not ask to be born, nor to be subjected to abuse. Child abuse makes me sick, nauseous, horrified, distressed, devastated, overwhelmed, saddened, angered, distraught, disgusted. HG, you are not at fault for abandoning your soul at a young age. It was your body’s defense mechanism. Yet pple are so down on narcs. Yes narcs are abusive to adults, which is unacceptable, but child abuse is worse. If a narc is a perpetrator of child abuse or has abandoned a child however, then i cannot tolerate it.

    1. Susan says:

      I totally agree with everything you said. Another sad part to this is that the adult Narc was once the abused child and down the line it goes…I’m so grateful for this blog and the wealth of information that HG has provided , no matter how it was initially started, because maybe it will trigger some spark of self awareness in people who don’t fully realize why they are the way they are. More importantly to awaken and educate parents who are in a relationship with this kind of person to protect their children from the behavior.

      1. Susan, i wish the same. I hope the children will be protected with more awareness. Prayers to all the suffering children. May they find happiness.

  19. ava101 says:

    A very good post, HG, and so true. Absolutely.

    Was very isolated myself and my parents certainly did not teach me what a loving relationship looks like. And unfortunately, I kind of copied the behavior of my mother. Fatal. We’re all conditioned that way. BUT: We have the freedom to grow beyond that. We can make a decision.

    My personal guess is that 90 % of common relationships got nothing to do with love. And I certainly wouldn’t like the type of relationship where couples argue in the supermarket or where I’m expected to be available to hang out in front of the TV in the evening.

  20. Stringbean Jean says:

    You were taught love by a failed unit. It is no surprise to hear you label women ‘appliances’. At least they function with purpose, I suppose.
    For what it’s worth, sorry for your suffering, burden and betrayal.
    Surely with awareness comes choice. You can either light the blue touch paper and let the fury burn or carry on adding fuel.
    Unchartered territory to explore here. You could be the pioneering explorer who rewrites literature.
    Explosive stuff I’m guessing.

  21. Watermelon says:

    That’s not love, it’s abuse.

  22. Ollie says:

    That’s not love, that’s abuse.
    A victim of your upbringing.

  23. Matilda says:

    This post moved me deeply, HG… my heart aches for you, that you had to endure this… it must have been hell… you were never given unconditional love, you could not know what it looks and feels like… but I believe that you can heal… we all can… I did.

    When I was little, I thought I knew what love was… but you lose your faith when parents divorce… everything you have known love to be seems no longer valid. So, I ran from love when I had the chance to find out what it feels like… he is a father now, and I know in my heart that he is a very good one… I am happy for him, from afar.

    As always, I turned to the great writers and poets of times gone by for solace… some of them were just as lost as me, some were on their way to recovery, and some spoke with the beauty of hindsight… slowly but surely the numbness faded, and hope returned… when the narc crossed my path, he wreaked havoc, but he could not take away what I had learned to be true: loving and being loved is the essence of life.

    You can heal from this.

  24. Snow White says:

    It always leaves my stomach feeling nauseous when I read about the abuse that you suffered from.
    I was never exposed to any of those and can’t imagine how someone treats their child like that.
    I write here often about how thankful I am that you created this blog but I’m also thankful that you have a place to get all your pain out. You have made a safe place for yourself to admit things to us that you would no where else. That shows courage HG and I think that each time you discuss your let downs in life and manipulations by the hand of your mother with us you learn more and grow.
    Everyone needs a safe place to admit things and to get things off their chest. You do an excellent job conveying your feelings with us.

  25. jarwithaheavylid says:

    Was there a point in the road where you consciously chose to become a narcissist? Could you have chosen a different path?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      I didn’t choose to become a narcissist because I did not know what one was Jar. I appreciate you probably meant did I choose to behaviour in a way which I later came to understand was the way of the narcissist? This is a matter of perspective. I could argue that I had no choice and I did what I had to in order to protect myself. I would have maintained that stance at the outset of my treatment. I did have a choice. I could have done nothing and continued to absorb the way I was treated, I could have looked to counter it by over-compensating, giving and pleasing in the way my sister did or I could have chosen to take. At the time I saw only the choice between continuing to be weak, helpless and the recipient or I could replicate and grab that power for myself. I chose the latter and thus my fate was sealed. Could I have chosen a different path? With hindsight, yes, but at the time there really was no choice. I did not think I am going to make this choice so I hurt people, I decided I saw power and I wanted it because that was how I could protect myself.

      1. BraveHeart says:

        HG, you told me once that you did not believe in “fate”; therefore, according to your own words, your fate is not sealed. This means, to me, you must have some sort of belief that you can make new choices. Personally, I think you’re already doing so, gradually, while helping each of us do the same for ourselves.

      2. Matilda says:

        Given the *severity* of the abuse, seizing the power was the best option available to you at that point in time. I probably would have done the same under such circumstances, as continuing being a victim is not a feasible option. Having said that, coping mechanisms can run their course.

        When I saw my parents’ marriage fall apart, the sufferings of two good-hearted people who tried their best, I swore to myself that this would never happen to me. A fortress for my heart, I built. Yes, I *was* safe, but at the cost of everything that makes life worth living.

        I believe that people come into our lives to teach us what we need to learn… ‘the one who got away’ taught me that sometimes you have to do what you fear most, and take a leap of faith, or lose what you might never find again… and the narc taught me that there are no guarantees in life and suffering is inevitable… when your heart finally gets broken, you can take comfort in knowing that you were brave enough to risk it all, you got a glimpse of what it might feel like with the right person, and you *will know better* than to walk away from someone you know in your heart is good for you.

        Some day, you might find yourself at the crossroads, where you might feel that familiar strategies no longer serve you to the extent they once did… and you might want to explore what else is out there for you… if that happens, you will need to muster all the courage you have, and pull through… it will be worth it.

      3. HG Thank you for saying that. It is not a conscious choice when you are a child trying to save yourself. It is a conscious choice now though as an adult.

      4. Empath23 says:

        Do you feel that empaths and narcissists are similar, in the sense that neither can help or change who and what they are?

        1. Empath23 says:

          My last question was for you HG.

        2. HG Tudor says:


      5. NarcAngel says:

        It seems you believed your choices at the time only allowed for black or white and most people (as adults) would suggest that there was some middle ground. But given that you WERE a child, and if we, (even as adults) were offered those same options and could only make one choice or the other, who among us would not choose strength over victimization and weakness? You did what you believed you needed to do to survive, but was there not a time when you knew you were secure in having survived and made the choice to become more efficient?

      6. NNH says:

        That makes sense. I cannot imagine having to cognitively make that choice as a little boy, but it makes sense. You mentioned your sister In your response, but not your brother. I read in another comment on another thread that he became an empath, and you didn’t give any further detail.
        1. I understand that is your brother’s story. If you don’t want to say what type of empath he is, I respect that.
        2. I am asking….

        This is actually a non invasive question. (Occasionally, I have one or two of them. Lol) Is he much older/younger than y’all? Is that why you didn’t mention him in your answer?

        Or, ( back to invasive), is it because you actually “like” your brother?
        Yes, I used quotation marks.

  26. Love says:

    I like the title “tart with a golden heart”.

    1. Love says:

      Do you think empaths can be escorts?

  27. Jen says:

    Love is not learned. It’s instinctual. It’s survival. It’s life. You were born with it. At your most innocent and vulnerable time in your life, a time when you needed love the most, you were denied by no fault of your own.
    Most end up afraid of putting themselves in that vulnerable state of love and need of another human. You torture and push those away that stand a chance of getting too close. You are just too afraid of it. Fear is the only thing causing all of it.
    Some of us denied, instead of becoming narcissistic, become your super empaths. Instead of shutting down and running from the fear, we face it. Why? We can’t stand others suffering the way we did. We remember what it feels like.
    You are torturing people, who at sometime in their lives, have suffered like you, or maybe worse. Now, that seems sad. Why would anyone fear you? Pity maybe but not fear.

    1. HG Tudor says:

      I know the difference between pity and fear Jen and I have seen fear many times. Not just those who show fear because of what I have done, but in the eyes of those around me because of the situation, as they cry out to God and their mothers and not necessarily in that order.

    2. Victory says:

      Sorry Jen but The desire for love is instinctual, who & when to love are choices. We may not realize we’re making them but a choice non the less. How to love & be loved need learning and guidance& healthy boundaries are at the core. My info comes many psychology magazines, books & nueroscince sites, including books I’ve gotten from a criminal profiler in training.

  28. MLA - Clarece says:

    Of all your blogs, H.G., this by far is your bravest piece. Knowing through your books and other blogs some of the stories behind these “lessons” leaves me moved beyond any words.
    Let that little boy keep writing his way out of that inner tomb.
    Proud of you to share this glimpse of yourself with all of us.

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Thank you Clarece.

      1. bananasareberries1 says:

        I agree with Clarece. Is that something your therpist recommended? You seemed to be very hesitant thus fat to share details of the abuse you suffered as a kid. I assume you needed time and this may be another sign of the progress in your therapy. I hope.

        1. HG Tudor says:

          I only address it BAB1 when I feel able to do so which is writing about it at a time I choose, rather than detailing it answers on the blog. It will see the light of day in time.

  29. And that my darling is why we became what we are/were.
    You and I share alot of those experiences and much more I suppose. Here is a secret for you. It can be undone. The memories stay, but you beat the ones that inflicted it by not being like them. By changing you win. They can’t stand it when they have lost you. When you grow past them emotionally and stop the pattern. You look at their games and laugh. Not because you play them as well or better than they do. But because you don’t need to play them anymore. You get your esteem from the inside now and truly are complete. No creature, no construct, the real and wonderful you. Reexamination of the abuse from an adult perspective changes the abuse from always seeing it in a child’s perspective to reasoning it as an adult and understanding how the immature mind used unhealthy coping skills as a way out. We were left to figure out how to deal with adult matters and abusive treatment alone with no help. We had to rely on ourselves. Feeling isolated and alone is terrifying. You’ve got no rescue. Your child mind couldn’t handle that so you fought back with not feeling anything. It wasn’t safe to feel. And what little feelings you did express were crushed down by saying that you aren’t allowed to feel that. Stop being weak. Do not cry. So you see you had to feel something if those feelings were being told to stop. Feelings move us to tears. Feelings are shown. The display of feeling was taught to be a weakness. So were you born this way? No. The expression of feelings were there but you were not only told they were bad but got a full demonstration for years on how to go through life without expressing them. She basically swallowed your identity by stripping you of your right as a human to decide what you feel and the right to display any emotion any time you want to without feeling bad or wrong or weak. It takes great courage to trust someone enough to tell them how you feel. Especially when you suffered the beat down of emotion by the ones that were supposed to nurture and keep you safe. They failed. You don’t have to. Start by trusting the doctors and yourself. Oh and me of course 💙

    1. HG Tudor says:

      I do not trust the doctors and I have valid reasons not to.

      1. Glad to see your sticking to your guns and not changing. Disregard everything I wrote. Oh wait, you already did. *smiles*

      2. ava101 says:

        Like what?

      3. NarcAngel says:

        I have issues with trust also. My first question would be: who is paying the Doctors? Followed by: who stands to gain the most from this?

        1. HG Tudor says:

          My family.
          Therein lies the battle.

      4. NNH says:

        No kidding. They went to your asshole mother and told on you, hence you getting that letter. I don’t know the rules in the United Kingdom, but in the United States that is illegal. That makes me think the Grand Design was amended with additional names, as well as additional punishment for your sainted mother. Sorry, that is what I call mine, as my voice drips with sarcasm. Obviously I am not succeeding in “Buddhaing” it out today. Lol But, I have learned that sometimes that is okay. And it is not my job to educate people on their shit. It belongs to them. Own it or don’t. I am just not going to deal with it. I did actually thank my ex today. ( in my head of course)
        Still have trust issues. My sainted mother and I have always had “issues”. When we are going to have a serious conversation I put my iPhone on voice record. Never tell her. Always save everything. She tried to throw me under the bus today. I very calmly got out my phone and played the recording. I then said ,” Anything else, because I have others. I have learned to protect myself over the past few years. I tell the entire truth, even the parts that make me look bad. That’s life. I muck stuff up too, and i am never going to omit that part of it so I look like the hero and you are the villain. So, go fuck yourself.” In front of her significant other, and her best friend. Then I left.

        That is NOT something you would do. Well, part of it was. The recording part. I can totally see you shaking your head at my ET at the end. Me being human. Lol. But, it was an easier decision for me. My parents are divorced. Just got home a bit ago. I will probably have to drink a couple of bourbons in a minute. I like commenting on the older threads.

  30. Overthinker says:

    I have no words … I’m so sorry for your upbringing and the bewilderment and pain that must of caused you as a child … x x

  31. Cara says:


    Love is being told that nobody else will take care of me but her;

    Love is being told (as a child) I couldn’t have anyone over to the house because they’d make a mess;

    Love is never telling anyone how Mommy slapped, kicked, and punched Daddy regularly;

    Love is me agreeing to stop seeing the boy she doesn’t like

  32. Love is for your sister because you’re bad!

  33. Supernovamagnet says:

    Indeed. The words “I LOVE YOU” compose the very first lie I was told to believe and insodoing, I turned my back on reality. I was inducted into the illusion that was to almost destroy me. Now I see that unbiased, unemotional reason is far more precious than the biggest lie of them all…………..LOVE 💘 and I pursue logic, reason, truth with the heart of a zealot. That’s why my ideal partner would be a narcissist who told truth. Haha. The cold monster inside is ok with me. Its what I see in the narcissist anyway. That is what is so absurd, I’ve already seen. All the bullshit is unnecessary and insulting. What a waste that you bastards cant open your eyes. But then again, I’m pretty exceptional. Its going to take a VERY ADVANCED WIZARD NARCISSIST TO REALIZE WHATS IN FRONT OF HIM.

    1. HG Tudor says:

      A Wizard Narcissist SNM? Do you or did you play Dungeons and Dragons?

      1. Supernovamagnet says:

        Hardly. Science fiction is rather tedious. Especially when one can contemplate unified string theory instead. The wizard of which I speak is a person of such intellectual brilliance that those of us with sluggish spoiled lazy minds would perceive them as supernatural. It was just a sort of sarcastic metaphor HG!!
        Dungeons and dragons indeed!! 😂😆🐤

      2. ava101 says:

        We can all imagine ourselves in a dungeon and meeting the narc as a dragon. 🙂
        Love you post, Supernovamagnet!

  34. Bruised says:

    my dear G…. Your way of learning love sounds excruciating and so painful. .. I’m not saying anyone is taught love fully correctly but the way You’ve been taught is completely abusive and opposite to love… my heart literally aches for You. I’m truly sorry that You went through that and more….❤❤❤

  35. Susan says:

    Is that what you were taught? 🙁

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Yes and more besides.

      1. Susan says:

        I’m so sorry .. I believe God is turning your darkness into light. Your sorrow into hope for not only yourself but others like me. I’ve been so lost trying to explain to myself and understand what was going on all my life. You have opened my eyes to more self worth than I’ve had my whole life and I am forever grateful to you. I don’t know what Gods plan is , and I know we live in a fallible world .. but I do know that he is there for us, just like he was for Joseph from Genisus in the Bible.
        Thank you for sharing your gifts of self awareness , intelligence and excellent writing skills. It is greatly appreciated .

  36. Fool me 1 time says:

    HG, this is what confuses me the most! I have been through almost all of what appears on your list! But I did not turn out like you! I turned out as one that you pursue! I don’t understand why? I’m also sorry for what you have gone through I know it all to well and would not wish it on another living soul!! Xxx

    1. MsSevyn says:

      FM1T, I grew up in a similar household with a MatriNarc. She chooses a child to be her golden child. This one becomes the N. Another child is chosen to carry the family’s emotional baggage and is made to be the scapegoat/empath. The empath is taught to serve the MatriNarc and golden child. In my experience, the empath suffers a great deal of abuse. From what HG wrote, it looks like the golden child also suffers abuse. It didn’t look that way in my house. The golden child and MatriNarc were a dynamic duo.
      As it says above, a dog taught me to love unconditionally. She carried me through the worst of it.

    2. Becky says:

      This is why I am convinced that it is a combination of genetics and environment.

  37. Love says:

    Were you sent away as a child? Boarding school? How did you experience isolation?
    Btw, what do you think about Eckhart Tolle?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Yes. Not to boarding school. Isolation came in many forms.
      I do not know him, Love.

      1. Love says:

        Thank you

  38. Brian says:

    When it comes to empaths, I think they were denied it growing up so they are like that song “I wanna know what love is…..I want you to show me”

    1. sarabella says:

      Something in this rings so true to me.

    2. BraveHeart says:

      Brian, “I Wanna Know What Love Is” was on the playlist the ex-MN gave to me. Listening to it now, has an entirely different meaning.

  39. Melanie Howes says:

    Love is loving someone who can’t love you back and knowing this but still have love for them because you have so much for yourself, It feels even though your giving you getting more back by giving because the universe loves you more for it! Love is also honestly in the former of tough love!

  40. bananasareberries1 says:

    HG on the second thought, I hope you do not manipulate us here trying to get various reactions from the audience. Disgust or sympathy interchangeably, depending on what topic you choose. I am just saying I know some of the narcs tricks. And I like experiments in my own too 😉. You donnot have to publish this comment. Up to you.

    1. HG Tudor says:

      I will publish it BAB1 as it is a valid observation.

      1. The fuel gained if I was manipulating for the sake of anger/disgust/praise/sympathy etc is low. I have always confirmed that to be the case. I find the interactions here interesting but it is not done for fuel; and
      2. The five rules prohibit such behaviour.

      I have no need of manipulation here.

      1. Not always though, eh HG 😉

  41. bananasareberries1 says:

    What happened to you HG. This is aweful. Now I feel like a jerk teasing you all the time. I hate people hurting children and I would hang them upside down and torture a bit as this is what this bustards deserve. Ugh. Those creators of demaged people like you. I know it is not your fault you are made that way but same time you should be hold accountable for what you control as an adult. I am very sorry. Really I am. And love is all different things. Falling in love and all the happy hormones are fun but what is the backbone of love is partnership and loyalty. This is what love is to me. I do not need the butterflies in my stomach. In that way – if you decide to change your ways of living and treating others, you could find love. I want you to find it. I know you deserve to find your peace with yourself and in your life.

    1. HG Tudor says:

      It is not an issue BAB1 since you can tease and challenge. I found my way of dealing with what happened, your teasing just bounces off and is part of our interaction here.

      1. bananasareberries1 says:

        Thank you. It is not intended to hurt you. I deal with many people around me in similar way. But you do not see my big smile when I do that and I may come up as a very harsh and annoying one (which I am to some extend). Thanks for being forgiving.

  42. Brian says:

    I think people who get involved with your kind have a similar problem , but thirst after it instead of denying it altogether.

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