Black or White But Never Grey



We all like to attach labels to people. People do it instinctively in respect of someone who they have just met, someone they have read about, a person they have known for a long time or someone they have seen on television. It is rare for someone to say that they do not have a view or an opinion about someone. Examples might include: –

“He’s a dependable chap, always there when you need him.”

“He’s a funny looking fellow.”

“She is very catty.”

“She is stunning looking.”

“A complete attention seeker.”

“A genius musician.”

“Really annoys me, I don’t know what it is but he does.”

Those are just classifications based on looks and personality. One can classify somebody by race, religion, birthplace, occupation, gender and so much more. Labels are used all the time as people are placed into boxes and compartments. Our kind do the same, but we differ in a fundamental way. We have an instant classification of people which is very straight forward. We will place people into further categories after this initial categorisation often using labels you would not and then we may well attach additional labels similar to the ones you use. What is this initial categorisation? It is simple. A person is either good or bad. That person is either with us or against us. They either do what we want or they do not. There are no ifs and maybes about these classifications. There is no grey with us when it comes to deciding into which camp someone should be placed. You are either white or black. You cannot be light grey, mid-grey or dark grey. We do not do the middling; it is one or the other. Let me give you some examples of those around me at the current time.

Julia (my boss) – Good

My mother – Bad

Paul (a lieutenant of longstanding) – Good

Andrea (predecessor primary supply) – Bad

Rachael(sister) – Good

Eric (colleague) – Good

Tania (lieutenant) – Good

Lesley (It Girl) – Bad

Elizabeth (litigious former girlfriend) – Bad

Phillip (lieutenant) – Good

Colin (competitor at work) – Bad

Not one of them am I indifferent to. You should be aware that this categorisation is based on my view of them irrespective of their behaviour towards me. Lesley for instance responded to a hoover a little while back and still messages me with pleasant comments from time to time. I play along as I am a far from finished with her but she is a bad person because of what she has done and moreover I know she will be looking for an opportunity to unseat me and seek some form of revenge over me as a consequence of my repeated thwarting of her ambitions. I know her game.

These categorisations are fluid. In fact, they are extremely fluid with some people, usually our intimate partners who are our primary sources of fuel. You may begin as a good person when I wake-up but by breakfast you are a bad person. Sometimes you will be utterly unaware of why your status has altered and it may appear capricious and arbitrary but it is not; you will have done something or failed to do something which has shifted your classification. Most often it is linked to your failure to provide me with fuel and therefore you will be designated a bad person and subjected to treatment in accordance with such a status; devaluation and denigration. Conversely, one can also move from bad to good in the blink of an eye. You won’t necessarily realise why this is, but we do. It is entirely logical to us.

As I mentioned once we have classified you as good or bad, we will classify you further, usually linked to the fuel you provide and how under our control you are. After that we will use similar labels to you – an interesting, handsome person and so on. Thus, take Paul my longstanding side kick. He is naturally a good person but I also regard him as a very good source of fuel, a highly reliable source of fuel and completely under my control, loyal and dedicated. My mother is a bad person. Whilst she is a good source of fuel for her emotional outbursts and temper tantrums, she is only fairly reliable. I have little control over her, she is a traitor and scheming to dethrone me, she has no concept of loyalty and is actively plotting against me. Thus whilst she may provide fuel the other factors cause her to be placed in the bad classification. I do not consider her to be grey just because she provides fuel but cannot really be controlled.

Why do we regard people in this manner? Why is it that we cannot take a holistic view of them? For instance, one might suggest that with the ex-girlfriend Lesley that she at one point was loving, dedicated and did much for me. Yes, she became a broken appliance and let me down, she also caused affront to me for which she must be repeatedly punished. She continues to try to be pleasant to me. Do I not look at this myriad of attributes and factors (plus more besides) and place her on some kind of spectrum between good and bad? No I do not. Why? Because my need of fuel is such I cannot have wishy-washy, amorphous classifications of people. This person is good – I can rely on them to give me positive fuel and do as I say. This person is bad – I can get negative fuel from them but I must be careful as they are plotting against me and seeking to avoid my control. This then enables me to apply my manipulations appropriately. It is also necessary to enable me to maintain my superiority and my self-worth. I need to keep those two aspects alive at all times. If you do not do what I want, you are calling into question my superiority. You are suggesting that I am worthless. Thus you are a bad person and I am the person who is admirable and worthy, you are wicked and evil. If you do as I want, you are confirming my superiority by submitting to my will. I am full of self-worth because you are acknowledging this by acting in accordance with my wishes. Deviate from that and you become a bad person.

You should have learned by now that because we look at the world through a different lens to you, there are many things that you will do (which you will not be aware about) which cause us to oscillate from regarding you as good to bad and then back to good, often in the space of an hour or less. This is all based on how we perceive your compliance to be. During our seduction of you, you are only ever a good person because you represent that wonderful potent source of positive fuel which we desire. You represent the prospect of an undimmed source unlike the bad person we are devaluing and about to discard. You always respond positively to our overtures, our love-bombing and you give us what we want. Hence you remain a good person. Those who are in our coterie, our lieutenants and those who form our façade remain good people. Challenge us, defy us or even worse see through us and you are challenging our need for superiority and self-worth and you must automatically be designated as a bad person, irrespective of what may have come before, that would create a more complex view. You failed to do what we want; you are a bad person. You then change and do what we want, you become a good person. It is a simple and necessary classification that we utilise.

     Accordingly, everything is either good or bad with our kind. Admittedly, though it usually turns ugly as well….

30 thoughts on “Black or White But Never Grey

  1. Tappan Zee says:

    Helpful. Never read this before. And like dominoes. They continue to fall. Narcs are black and white.

  2. Hello HG, After discard, are you always identified as “black”, and does this suggest you are black-listed? Furthermore, is black-listed a permanent state, i.e. they will never speak to you again? It appears one of my exes, if not both, keep a keen eye on me always knowing my whereabouts, as well as my phone conversations. Would the evil one, my 1st employ the assistance of my 2nd, a police officer to gain access?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      When we dis-engage you are painted black. It is not a permanent state.

      Indeed he would.

      1. Angelinpink says:

        How can you tell if you’re painted black and how long can it last?

        1. HG Tudor says:

          In its more obvious manifestation it is when you are being badly treated, however there are instances where you are painted black and you may not realise. For instance, the narcissist is largely neutral with you (Stranger Zone) but is smearing you elsewhere and/or is engaging in infidelity. You may find your interests being compromised (finances for example) but not be aware of it.

          1. Angelinpink says:

            So. Would that mean ignoring … seething looks …not talking to you … coldness?

          2. HG Tudor says:

            See the article concerning the Stranger Zone.

  3. Siobhan G. says:

    Are we always painted black after discard? What would make us white again.

    Mr. Tudor, what do you prefer to be called on the blog, I have seen, HG Tudor, Sir, Master, HG…is H G for Head-most Greater? What would you like me to call you when I comment? And is it alright just to read and not always comment.

  4. Brian says:

    I agree Mona.
    H.G. I guess what do you think about what Mona says, because I read Sam Vaknim saying exactly the same: If you give a narcissist what he needs he becomes blind and very easy to manipulate, is it truth?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      I think that is too much of a broad brush statement. It may well work with a Lesser but not with a Mid-Ranger and certainly not a Greater. Of course this presupposes that you know what you are dealing with (which most victims do not). If you do know, you then need to understand the dynamic and not everyone is able to do that owing to the infection of emotional thinking. If however you operate on the basis of giving what the narcissist needs you have some ability to manipulate but we are capricious creatures whereby what we needed yesterday has changed today and thus you will always have to be adapting and adjusting to cater for this. A Greater will work out what you are doing as well.

      1. Mona says:

        My last sentence was an exaggeration. The greater can`t be fooled like that, because we identify him too late and we cannot imagine, how evil such a person is. And I agree to you, HG, it does not work all times because of your changing wishes and needs.. But what I read (I don`t know where) was , is that a narcissist is an easily victim for a psychopath. That sounds logic for me. A narcissist depends on the fuel of other people, he needs his facade and a psychopath does not need fuel/attention he only tries to get what he wants with all means. If a psychopath wants something he plays with the need for attention of the narcissist. The narcissist cannot resist to get some “fuel.” A psychopath knows how to play the piano of human emotions . He stays in the background…
        I have a line manager at work. I now know what kind of narcissist he is. I see through his lies. Sometimes I do as if I am guilty for his faults at work. He is always thankful. I let him the illusion that he controls everything. He trusts me because I admire him a lot and give him the feeling he is superior. Very often I manipulate him to do what I want. That`s the deal. I admire him, never criticize him and he gives me support. I “glance” at him. I do not want to get any closer. I do not want it that way, but there is no other way. If I would not behave like that, I am sure, he would attack me.

  5. Insatiable Learner says:

    Very enlightening, HG! Thank you for this! If an IPSS or DS wounded a narcissist but otherwise consistently remained complimentary, adoring, and loyal, does the narcissist still see her as white and therefore no devaluation?

  6. Victoria says:

    Hi H.G.
    You write above:”see through us and you are challenging our need for superiority and self-worth” Do you mean the self worth that is present during the seduction/golden period due to positive fuel? Also, do they sense when the IPPS is starting to see through them-their inconsistencies, the black/white going back and forth? Is this frightening and if so-why?
    Thank you Sir.

    1. HG Tudor says:

      No, the concept of self-worth throughout.
      It is of concern with regard to the loss of fuel and potential wounding.

  7. Mona says:

    Are you aware, that it is very easy to manipulate your kind with this knowledge (not on the whole, but in parts)?. I instinctively knew it. I went back to him, admired him a little bit in front of others and suddenly I was white. So I could get some money back. It worked. It was fascinating. He thought I was under his control again. I could try it again and he would fall for it again. Tell them what they want to hear (although it is rubbish) and you get what you want.

  8. Mona says:

    To control or not to control – that`s the question.

  9. Flickatina says:

    You have a boss? What an inconceivable notion!

  10. Mel says:

    Hello HG great article! Question: since no individual can please you perfectly,have their been times that loyal and good ones like Paul and Tania ever been labeled bad? If so, can you give an example of what they did to be labeled bad and what they did to be labeled good and loyal again?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Hello Mel, no not so far, they have remained effective and loyal appliances to me.

  11. Maria says:

    i consider myself a winner too..

  12. Maria says:

    Bring it on
    I have the same view..

  13. Hurt says:

    So would someone like lesley and your mom stay bad forever or can they also become good again? Also do some people stay bad forever irrespective of what they do?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      There is no hope for MatriNarc. Lesley deserved what happened to her. I would not regard her as ‘bad’ forever though.

  14. So what is it that keeps someone in your ‘good’ category when they’re a non intimate SS ?

    And do they still receive some devaluations ?

    I appear to be attracting more Ns than ever at the moment. I can only think this is because I’m happier with more self esteem than ever ?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Hi Alexis, by providing positive fuel on the occasions we interact, by being loyal and dedicated, doing things we want. They may be devalued but it is rarer.

      1. Nice surprise HG !! Your answer was definitely worth the wait. Thank you x

        1. HG Tudor says:

          You are welcome.

  15. IntelAvatar says:

    They will write a musical 🙄

    1. IA,
      I posted that this was HG singing it instead of King George months back. Great minds and all that. 😎 Love me some HG and Hamilton. Or maybe I just love things that start with H!

  16. I’m good. They tried to make me out as bad. Not going to work this time. I know who I am. That’s good, kind, loving, intelligent, humorous and beautiful. They are now cut off with no contact. Their loss. They can paint me black all they want, I keep coming out whitewashed. 🌣Hooray for Me!!

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