Chained

chained1

Are you or somebody you know chained to the narcissist? Are you a co-dependent? What does this mean? How did you become this way? How does the narcissist know what you are? How does the narcissist exploit this condition and how might you escape him? These questions and more are posed and answered in this fascinating book. Delivered direct from the dark-hearted master, the narcissist provides his unique observations on those who are co-dependent and find themselves chained to the narcissist.

US e-book here

UK e-book here

CAN e-book here

AUS e-book here

Also available in paperback

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49 thoughts on “Chained”

  1. Clarece lol!!! Having a convo w a turnip in his presence!! Haha! But since the turnip is a root vegetable, how abt a head of lettuce instead? I can draw eyes, nose, and a mouth on it? Lol i can’t stop laughing and i needed that! Thank you! I’m a bit of an old fashioned kind of gal in that i feel more comfortable having a man around the house than being alone. If he doesn’t talk to me, i’ll talk to my mom lol. But he will fix a leaky faucet, fill my gas tank 😂, change the car’s oil, bring me my medicine etc. It’s helpful having him around in that way. So i’m not too down abt mr. Gas tank. I don’t want to date again. I’m too afraid of starting all over with someone new.
    As far as JN is concerned, he seems so benign (forgive me if i’m wrong). His manipulations are rather comical to me, mistexting you instead of mark etc. ‘Oops that was embarrassing. Happy mother’s day’ lol!! I can’t imagine him as the poster boy for HG’s ‘EVIL’ written inside a heart at the top of this page. Again, if i have it wrong pls feel free to correct me. And that fb pic ‘a man and his cat.’ Omg lollllll!!!

    1. Hello Jenna!
      You deserved that belly laugh. If something is very difficult or challenging, have you heard the saying “it’s like trying to draw blood from a turnip”? That was why I referenced talking to a turnip in place of Mr. Gas Tank since he’s so difficult to interact with and in his own zone. lol
      Actually that is safe to say that now interactions with JN have become almost comical. No doubt we are unhealthy for each other but he is not evil per say and I do not have to worry about stalking or being physically harmed by him.
      He was hurtful before I knew what he was. In fact, I think one of the first stories I actually shared on here happened 3 years ago. He was graduating from the University in our town and we had been on and off for 2 years at that point but I had not seen him in about 4-5 months. I was still getting occasional flirty text exchanges but things had cooled down somewhat. I wanted to get him a nice gift for his graduation to remember me by. He plays guitar and I ordered him a piece of artwork called “All The Guitars in Tennessee”. Framed and everything for $200.00. Granted, single mom on a budget not long after my divorce then so it was definitely a sentimental gesture. I had it shipped to Chicago where he was headed to stay at that time post graduation.
      The note in the card said something to the affect “Something to hang up when you get your first office with a view. Remember me fondly”. The rep that took down the message for the gift card thought it was a touching gesture and said “he’ll love this!” Yeah!
      First, JN told me he’d stop by to say goodbye the last day he was in town. He texted me the whole day stringing me a long, then dropped the bomb he wasn’t coming finally at 8:30 p.m. at night 12 hours he texted that morning that I would see him. I had taken a day off of work to be available for him.
      Then 5 days later I get a text just saying “thanks”. One word Caveman text for the gift. So here’s where Clarece in typical form loses her sh*t at that point. I fumed for several hours. Then around 9:00 p.m., I sent a text, saying how hurtful it was to completely disregard I took a day off of work to see him and he never showed and it meant something to me to say good-bye. I also questioned if he even appreciated his gift because I put a lot of thought into it. All things HG says they wait for our reaction when being silent for us to finally go off.
      JN was either with a friend or pretended to be a girlfriend and I got this immediate response. “I am M____’s girlfriend. He has my heart, mind and body and I have his. Don’t text this number anymore.” I had the most vile physical out of body reaction. About two hours later JN texted and said “did you try to get a hold of me? I was busy getting a bj from my girlfriend”. I know there was a texting war after that, but it was three years ago and is a blur now. The week prior, he was sending texts that any real girlfriend would break up over. I’ll leave it at that.
      He unfortunately also knew something I strongly desired to have happen which was a major factor in ending my divorce when I did, so I’d have that chance while there was still time with another. And that was an ongoing manipulation with him for over two years and extremely harmful.
      I’ve been able to eliminate all the very hurtful portals for him to access now so all he’s left with are yes, quite comical or irritating benign hoovers.
      It took several times for HG to pretty much call out play-for-play JN”s next move and have it happen exactly as he would foresee to really grasp this different world view that they have. I think what throws JN off now is I never have those complete emotional, erupting, fuel fest breakdowns like I did that night 3 years ago. I pull back now.

    1. Hi Jenna,

      You are welcome. I feel your pain and I would like to add something.
      It takes time but one day you will be able to understand why you are stuck in this place, why you think you have to share your life with someone who cannot see you or hear you, who has no interest in you whatsoever and makes you feel unloving and undeserving and only interacts with you when necessary. I think that your family and how they raised you has to do with it. It is not my intention to upset you.

      My family used to value people for what they did or achieved and not for what they were. Human doers vs. human beings. Several years ago I was indirectly pushed by my father and a friend of his and his wife to have a relationship with their son. They could not understand why I was not interested in him because he was academically and professionally successful, good-looking and well-off. However, I saw his arrogance, pride and coldness. He was shallow and made subtle put-downs when he could not control me. Today I know he was a narcissist. I did not let him ensnare me.

      Narcissists like Mr. Gas Tank are not able to feel something like love or affection for you or for anyone else and not even for a brief period. There is no such a thing as “to feel love for a brief period” and then to realize it is not. He is using you to satisfy his owns needs: his benefits to be part of your family. It gives him status, prestige and it makes him look good. It has nothing to do with you. You deserve better than someone *to fill your gas tank* and do a few things for you.
      As for your ex’s new IP, she is just an object to him. He will never be able to feel love for her.

      You can be accepted and respected for who you are and you deserve better in your life than what you are experiencing now.

      1. Thx for your reply EB. But just to clarify, mr. Gas tank is not a narc. He is definitely not an empath though. I believe he is a normal. I had him take the NPI (narcissistic personality inventory) and he scored very low on it. Plus, he has the full spectrum of emotions without mirroring. He is just very cold. In fact, i had my ex mid-ranger take the NPI as well, and his score was sky high. Yikes!
        You mentioned that my ex’s new ip is just an object to him. That makes me feel better and i need to keep reminding myself that. It may keep my jealousy in control. Actually, i believe she is an NISS, but possibly up for promotion.

      2. Jenna,

        It made me laugh when you said you had your ex and Gas Tank take the NPI ! 🙂

        No, you do not need to be jealous at all. Let him promote her to be his Primary Victim if he wants to. You are not his victim anymore. Your ex does not have any feelings for her, except that he needs her as a fuel provider just like he needs any other appliance to meet his needs in daily life. We cannot feel real love for our home appliances. If a washing machine is broken beyond repair, we will replace it for a new one. When your ex gets tired of her because his Primary Victim’s fuel is not as potent as it used to be, he will have to find a new appliance. What he does has nothing to do with your self-worth, character or personality, Jenna.
        *Hugs*

  2. Twilight and narcaffair, thank you. I will try that. Rn, my ex is texting me daily though. Lord knows why. I did’t respond today. I am so furious. And yes NA, the fact that im in an unhappy relationship definity is a factor in why i am having a hard time letting go of my narc. But i cannot end my current relationship, for my family’s sake. But just hearing your supportive words is helping alot. Thank you. 💗

      1. Panic attacks. Painful, heavy, debilitating, heart racing, difficulty breathing, unbearable, crawl onto your bed in a fetal position panic attacks – that’s what i’m afraid of more than anything else.

      2. Jenna

        I am sorry! I do understand, if I am not grounded before heading into public I can be triggered. It doesnt happen often as when I was younger, but it still happens. Now it is usually cause by another’s pulling me into theirs. There is nothing fun about them.
        Do you know the root cause of these panic attacks?
        For me my original trigger was abandonment. I feared it, it is one of the worst things I believe a person can be put through. We were created to be social, Nothing causes a person to feel more worthless then being seen yet not seen. When I would be told children are to be seen but not heard, I actually want to smack the crap out of whoever is saying this.

        Reading your new man is treating you this way concerns me. Seen but not seeming you. You have some hard choices to make. You can do it, even if you have to take it second by second just keep putting one foot ahead of the other.

        Many hugs to you!

    1. Hi Jenna!
      I’m sorry you are having a hellish week. I have braced myself many times knowing I’ll hear about or one day see JN with someone finally in an official capacity due to the connection of how we met with him being friends with the family I work for. On the other hand, I’ve always prepared for that.
      Despite what he has said, you made a choice to go no contact for yourself and allow him to check in “as friends”. Why wouldn’t he at some point move out of his “depression” and look to seek companionship and a relationship with another?
      Some things with your comments are abundantly clear that I see and no amount of meds or music are going to eradicate this pain until you address the following head-on:
      1) You are still so madly in love with your Narc and you are completely stuck;
      2) You are hiding behind what is an excuse, that you cannot end your current relationship with your boyfriend because of your family and their expectations. That is not a viable reason. That is avoiding an extremely uncomfortable confrontation with both your boyfriend and then your family having to explain to them. It is the path of least resistance and that on top of the stress from your Narc are tearing you apart.
      As far as Mr. Gas Tank, I don’t know what kind of person he is. Maybe on the stiff, boring side somewhat from what you have written but I don’t gather that he is a d-bag. He has life goals, good job, productive member of society… Jenna, if he really loves you though and you clearly can’t reciprocate that and don’t feel that for him, it is MOST UNFAIR to him to carry on this charade because of “your family’s” expectations. Someday, there will be some life event, or catalyst that will cause the truth to come out and if you live a life living for other people and string him along that will destroy his heart and I don’t think that’s fair to him. Maybe it was easier to go along and placate with him because you knew deep down you were hearing from your Narc every couple of weeks when he would check-in and since he was still single, that was enough for you and gave you a small dose of thrill and you could carry on. But the thought that he is truly moving on with someone else and then worse using you for relationship advice now which is completely triangulating you, has your whole world turned upside down.
      Have you asked your Narc why he chose this person that you said goes against the type of person he would choose (i.e. argumentative, doesn’t take care of her body making healthy choices, etc)?
      You do have some truly hard issues to face here but you need to cut this chaos out of your life and purge out what is being forced on you and what you as an adult can choose for yourself and also being fair to those closest to you.
      Hang in there!

      1. Fair observations.
        You do not need to have any contact with the narcissist, but you choose to do so. Nor should you ask him why he chose the other person, you are not going to get an answer which satisfies you.
        There is more to the dynamic than meets the eye here.

      2. My dear clarece, thank you for your detailed response and caring abt me. Many of your statements are absolutely true. But a few i will clarify. I believe Mr. Gas tank loved me for a brief period, but within a month or so he realized that he does not. He was coming out of a relationship when my family pushed me towards him, was highly interested in me at the time and in my family, due to them all being high achieving, 6 figure earning professionals.
        I believe he loves my family rather than me. He didnt know abt my ex narc at the time so that would not have been the reason for not loving me. He doesn’t talk to me, he doesn’t go out with me, he just replies with ‘mm’ or ‘ok’ when i talk, all the while reading the news on his phone. When i ask him to pls at least look at me while i speak, he becomes irritated. He doesn’t kiss me on the cheek, he doesn’t hold my hand, he doesn’t cuddle, he never watches movies with me, never goes out with me, doesn’t sit at the dinner table with me etc. Basically, he barely interacts with me. This was all b4 knowing abt my narc so it wasn’t out of retaliation. And this was also when i was at a peaceful place with my ex narc, so i was happy, thus didn’t let out negative vibes or such. It makes me feel sad that mr. Gas tank turned out to be something other than what i thought he was, but there are more reasons why i cannot leave him, which i cannot discuss here. I wish i could. But he is definitely a productive member of society, like you stated, having a respectable career, and earning 6 figures as well. Since my recent panic attack, i realized and told mr. Gas tank that my ex narc is still v much in my system. I have stated that it is not fair for him to have to deal with this, and suggested that he leave me. He said he will not. (He loves my high achieving family too much and his name being associated with them).
        These days, my ex narc is texting me almost daily rather than the weekly or bi-weekly texts. Idk why. I told him i’m happy that he found someone, and i always say ‘i’ll let u go now so u can text her.’ Ya right, i lie to him because i cannot bear him being with someone else so i just don’t feel like texting. Thx clarece. How’s JN?

        P.S. For those wondering why we call my S.O. ‘Mr. Gas tank’, it is simply because i appreciate the things he does do for me, and one of those is filling my gas tank😂
        (I think this is the first time i’ve laughed all wk).

      3. Hello Jenna,
        Thank you for your thoughtful response. I hope you’re feeling better at least in the sense of feeling calmer and the anxiety has subsided.
        It doesn’t happen often, but I am at a complete loss with Mr. Gas Tank. I truly have no point of reference or can relate to his decision to stay solely for added prestige through your family when he is perfectly capable and has achieved it on his own.
        My God, if you went to the grocery store today and bought a turnip to talk to you’d get more out of it than him. Seriously! I worry his lack of interaction is going to condition you that you will never be someone worth sharing quality time doing things together, being affectionate with and basically interacting with. Then that makes you more vulnerable to the love crumbs your Narc sends your way. Bottom line, he’s got to go at some point. And he is sounding more like a Cerebral Narc himself with more intel on him.
        Me in this scenario…I’d probably check for his pulse sometimes just to be sure he has one and I’d get that turnip, set it on the table and have a whole conversation with it in his presence and tell him how much more engaging a f*ng turnip is than him. I would be climbing the walls with someone like that. lol
        Let’s see JN…there’s been some minimal contact. I can look at his texts through different lenses and see that he’s always testing now to gauge how much control he can have. Nothing harmful has happened, so that is good.

      4. Clarece, i replied to you. There was no reply button in that particular post, so i replied generally in the article. Pls see my reply at the v bottom of this page. Thank you.

  3. I hope it works Indy/Ms Brown, like it has done for me. If you let yourself go to the sounds, you tend to fund the music becomes one with you after a few listens and you barely hear it’s there, as you drift away. So calming. Sometimes you need to look down at yourself from a higher perspective, and realise the worries are actually minute in the grand scheme. Floating in space (in your mind) is a weightless experience indeed.

  4. Nobody has ever died from having an anxiety attack, remember that. And you’ll always be fine again afterwards. Touch objects and things whilst having one, or walls to ground yourself. Embrace it rather than fight it. Tell yourself you’re excited and ok about it while feeling breathless. I also heard that looking and naming objects surrounding you helps (take your mind off it)

    1. Sarah,
      Excellent tools! Yes, you are describing a technique called grounding of the 5 senses, really works!! I’m gonna give that soundtrack a listen too!! I love new stuff that works!

    2. “Nobody has ever died from having an anxiety attack…”
      Rn i’m so down, i wish the anxiety attack would kill me. The pain is unbearable. Yes, i’m so very weak. Sorry for being pessimistic. I think my ex has a new ipps and i CANNOT handle it. No contact, i realized, is not an option for me. My panic attack worsens and i need beta blockers (slows the heart) to manage it. But it is short acting relief. The bastard swore he would never have a woman until he is married because it’s a sin. I helped him so much to get out of his depression because i was naive and couldn’t see him in so much pain. He kept texting me asking how he can get out of his depression, that he’s suicidal etc. He was so appreciative for my help and 10 months later, he finds a new shiny toy. I hope he and she suffer. But he’s not exactly the devaluing type. He doesn’t exactly devalue. He gives lengthy golden periods and 3 day silences and some future faking that’s it. So im sure his new shiny toy is enjoying herself and they will live happily ever after. God i’m jealous.

      1. Jenna

        This to will pass, not today but in time it will. Focus on yourself, at this moment easier said then done. When these thoughts come, in regards with his new IPPS stop, sometimes actually verbally telling yourself helps and refocus on yourself, again easier said, yet the more you practice this the easier it becomes.
        For me I drink a lot of tea, specifically chamomile and lavender. I also use these scents, and White sage and lemon.
        Baths can be relaxing with music.
        Water is amazing, it can be used to recharge and wash negative energy.

        Please do not take this as I am telling you, I am only throwing some suggestions. You have a beautiful soul and holding on to the negitive energy is holding you back, I understand the reason for this. It is all you have left, let it go and let your love shine brightly once again.
        Your stronger then you believe.

        Sometimes to truly understand the light you hold within you must go through the darkness. In the darkness there is one that is showing the path out, we know who that is now.

      2. Jenna…if hes a true narc which he sounds like he is there have been other supply sources along the way. The depression/suicide phase may have been a way to hold onto you until he found a new primary source. I hate saying that bc i know the pain it must cause but first and foremost narcissists are out for themselves.
        I know the anxiety you must feel. I feel it on and off regularly. The best advice i can give is that itll pass in time. Some moments are really difficult but they are like waves. They eventually calm. Keep busy and vent to friends. Watch u tube vids that are uplifting. Just keep in mind if hes doing this to you do you think hes worth your getting sick over? I know easier said than done …💖 allow yourself grief. Be sad and upset but dont stew over whats going on in his life bc hes not really your partner anymore. Do you think the fact youre in an unhappy relationship is contributing to you having a hard time letting go of the narc? Maybe thats your answer. Maybe you need out and to find a partner who youre happy with. If that happened itd be easier to say goodbye to this toxic one with the narc. Just a thought.

      3. Jenna,
        It is understandable that the betrayal causes you unbearable pain. I am sorry you are going through this right now. You are not to blame.
        I do not trust people who say they have high morals and ethics. It is usually the opposite of who they say they are.

      4. I am morally bereft and ethically bankrupt. Except when I’m the opposite of course.

    3. When you are in the midst of a panic attack there isn’t anything that can pull you out of it. Nothing! You just have to wait until it’s over. I had them for many years!

    4. That’s so much easier said then done. Once I’m in the throes of my panic attack, there isn’t ANYTHING that can get me out of it. Just ave to ride it out.

  5. After two or three listens (before sleep mainly), you really get into it. Let your mind wander effortlessly and think of beautiful things. I imagine the galaxy with lots of floating planets.
    I can honestly say it’s helped me, plus, you feel refreshed the following day

  6. Jenna,
    Please have a listen to ‘Weightless – Marconi Union’ through headphones either via app or YouTube. It’s been scientifically proven to reduce anxiety, and it works (it really does). Close your eyes and open your mind to a wider perspective other than one person (your narc)… I am hoping it gives your worries a rest. I listened to it two or three times and made myself aware of how scrunched up my body was with tension. Breathe slowly a d deeply. Little things like this, amongst others, will have you feeling good again. This can be done without medication and you are worth it! Please try

    1. Thank you for sharing that, Sarah… I am trying to stay off mods and use guided meditations, morning and at hs. I will look this one up tonite and report back to you! 🕉

    2. Are you sarahjane1977 who i’ve interacted with b4? Thx. I will try it. I just listened to a little bit of it. It sounds a little creepy to me, but i’ll try anything.

      1. Yes, we have.

        Of course it’s nothing to be ashamed of. You feel deeply, and it’s a real shame it’s destroying you. Your health comes first though – easier said than done, I know.

        I was cynical about the tune, but kept with it. Hope you’re comfortable today.

  7. I’m co-dependent and i absolutely HATE it. I know pple will say just snap out of it, love yourself, but i get physical symptoms if i don’t hear frm him- panic attack, difficulty breathing, intense chest pain on the left side, a feeling of heaviness in the chest that makes walking difficult, hands shaking making it difficult to cook and carry out regular activities, depression, crying, basically becoming non- functional and not wanting to go out or do anything. Medications only help about 20-30% and their effect wanes after about an hour or two. And the max daily dose will not allow me to take them every two hrs. So the symptoms return to 100% shortly. I therefore have alot of suicidal ideation but would never do it because god forbids it. I wish i was never born.

    1. Jenna
      Im exactly like you in symptoms if the narcs even late calling or msging me. I get physically anxious and sick. It sucks! I hate it too. One day i hope i can be friends with him without relying on him this way. Its so dysfunctional. In the meantime im trying to learn why i am this way and fix myself. Its a scary place to be being a codependant. I am the very same way and it feels like a prison sentence.

      1. It feels like a prison sentence to me too. Ive tried self soothing, talking to family (they tell me to snap out of it too), but what abt the physical symptoms that are persisting and debilitating? I wish i never met my narc because i was such a happy person with a great sense of humour before narc. Now i am dependent on him, or the panic attack returns. Luckily, he texts me promptly every time i tell him i’m having anxiety but i just don’t want to rely on him in that way.

      2. Jenna…i feel the same way i wish i hadnt met him. I feel guilty as hell saying that bc we have shared some great times together and i do love him but its turned into something dusfunctional. Not all his doing its within myself. I need to find out how to fix me but it may mean the very thing that terrifies me the most and that is letting him go. Im not sure i can do that. Im not on meds but ive considered medicinal canabis. I would never use anything unless i went fully no contact then id maybe need something for anxiety. Its an awful addiction and reliance. I feel for you 💖

    2. Hi Jenna,
      I know it is so painful. I too had severe suicidal ideation, for years. It is like a relationship addiction for real. What helped for me, and it took years, was therapy, DBT skills and CODA 12 step meetings. I also took antidepressants to save my life. I have since age 22. No shame. Everyday is a victory when we get up and not harm ourselves and can start living and loving ourselves. Keep talking here 😊 It helps me too! At this point in my life for the first time really, I feel powerful, strong and a true survivor. I see this in you! Keep up the good fight Jenna. It’s hard and so worth it. There is a saying that I want to share/paraphrase:

      When your pain has a why, you will find a how .

      Pain + radical acceptance (letting go) = pain that does not turn into long term suffering. Suffering comes from grasping for what we want instead of what is. (DBT philosophy).

      Hugs 🤗

      1. Thx indy. I am on 4 medications already. I don’t feel shame for it. If i need it, i need it. But unfortunately, brain chemistry is not an exact science so the meds only help a certain percentage. The docs tried to change my meds several times but it only led to worsening of symptoms. I guess everyone responds differently to different meds. I’ve also been to four different therapists. They listen to me, offer no advice, take $165, then schedule the next appt. Or they tell me to take a walk. Thanks to them for nothing. All i am going to rely on now are prayers, and being here.

  8. Indy…codependant is associated with weakness and many dont like to hear that term. I can relate to that.

    1. You are do correct! Indeed it is. I don’t know why this label hurt more than depression or anxiety, but it really did. I think because it hits private pains not dealt with, like longing for love. I really fit the 12 step definition strongly, just didn’t want to hear it. My friend, the psychiatrist I mentioned above, is someone I trust will give me the real deal without fluff. Hes a 12 stepper. He’s hilarious and yes, partly Narc too. Very good at what he does tho you either love him or hate him. But very bright, doesn’t over medicate. Rare breed. I never crossed his bad side. However, if I ever did, ooooo ee. Temper! I had a clinical trainer tell me I had signs of it and to tighten these symptoms up. I keep my eyes peeled for it in me,

      Now, I don’t think I line up with the definition totally in HGs book. (I have always left abusive dudes first, except one) HG has more categories for his “prey” than the psych field and I fall into a type of empath here. His definition is like hard core severe codependency. I like his breakdown, maybe bc I don’t fit? Haha…or perhaps I’m just in denial….🤣😂

  9. And, as an interesting side note, I hated being labeled codependent. Hated it! I was labeled by a couple professionals given my desire to fix and heal others when it was not realistic. I went toe to toe with a friend that is also a psychiatrist, when he said, “girl, I can smell your codependency a mile away” with a sarcastic chuckle. He has Narc traits and is a former alcoholic, though we always remained friends and had s mutual respect. I rolled my eyes at him and stuck my tongue out! It took me another year before I went to s 12 step codependent meeting and thought, that fucker!! He was right🤣

  10. Is Samantha still in the mix? Is she the back up still, when you are done with Kim?

    Just bought this book, I really enjoyed reading it and your hypothesis for co-dependency. A bit more intense than classic garden variety definition of 12 step co-dep, almost like BPD traits mixed in. I agree with many of your theories you put forth in creation, I think we just label it differently(always an issue in science and psych). I like how you describe the beast within for the co-dep and its relationship to how it is created. I definitely do not fall cleanly into you definition of co-dep, though I did in 12 step definition (I had a lot of past alcoholics/addicts in my life) and narcissists. There is some overlap for sure. I think there is no name for what I am in traditional psych (empath levels) where you do keenly offer this distinction. I like.

    Would love to hear your take on 12 step codependency versus HG theory on codependency in an article. I know you are busy and I know I’d really like to read it! Lots of overlap and key differences. If you would like to collaborate on such, give a shout.

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