Surely That’s The End, Yes?


“I have not heard from him in a month, he has moved on hasn’t he?”

“I exposed what she is like to all of her family, she won’t be contacting me again that’s for sure.”

“I told him I know what he is and he disappeared so I doubt I will hear from him again.”

“He is with somebody else already so I guess he won’t want me again will he?”

“I told him what I thought of him and he just backed off. He won’t hoover me will he?”

“He came crying back to me and I gave him short shrift. I doubt he will bother again.”


There are many different scenarios and outcomes involving our kind where the victim considers that our kind will not bother with them again post discard or post escape. The victim thinks that a period of total silence, the involvement of the narcissist with a new victim, the manner in which the relationship ended will all mean that the narcissist will not come sniffing around the victim ever again.

We will.

Why is this the case?

Firstly, you must understand our perspective. You belong to us. You are our appliance. You are our property. The Formal Relationship between us may have ended but the Narcissistic Relationship is forever. It only ends when either you or I cease to draw breath. It does not matter that we enter into a new Formal Relationship with somebody else. It does not matter if you do. It does not matter that world war three erupted when we parted company. It does not matter if there has been complete silence for two years. None of these factors alter the fact that in our minds the connection between you and I because of the Narcissistic Relationship lasts until one of us dies.

Secondly, the attraction of gathering fuel from you is substantial and this is the prime driver for never letting go. Fuel is so important to us that it drives everything about behaviour and the link between you and I is no exception to the all-pervasive power of fuel.

Thirdly, factors such as new partners, the effluxion of time and the manner in which the Formal Relationship has ended are immaterial.

I am repeatedly asked by people whether a hoover will happen. I always answer the same; the risk always remains, but you can manage that risk. People set out the circumstances of the end of the Formal Relationship to me and what has happened since (if anything) and ask whether a hoover will happen, or express their view that they do not think it will happen because of a, b or c. My answer again is the same; the risk of us returning always remains, but you can manage that risk.

It is never the end. There is always a risk, a chance, a probability (or a possibility) that we will return to you and apply a hoover. You cannot assume that it is over. No matter how much it may seem that it is over, no matter how much it may appear to you that we will not come back, that we apparently have no reason to do so, such assumptions are dangerous. There are only two factors which are material to the issue of whether you will be hoovered again.

The first factor is the Hoover Trigger. For a hoover to happen potentially, it must first be triggered. This means that you must come into our sights, that we sniff the prospective fuel that leaks from you, that something happens to cause you to come up on our radar. Whether this happens depends on whether you enter one of the six spheres of influence. I have written separately about them in The Spheres of Influence (And What You Can Do About Them) in another article. I will not repeat its content other than to state that

  1. You have control over whether you enter any of the first five spheres of influence; and
  2. You have no control over whether you enter the sixth sphere of influence.

By staying away from us through no contact you will not enter the first five spheres. The sixth sphere is when we happen to think of you. Thus, if you have successfully implemented no contact the only risk of a trigger being activated is if we happen to think of you. You cannot influence that. Our preoccupation with your replacement means we are far less likely to think of you and hoovers are triggered by you doing something to enter the first five spheres, such as messaging us or passing where we live.

If you maintain no contact the first five spheres will not be entered. It then just depends on whether we happen to think of you. This may not happen for weeks or months. You can therefore see that by staying out of the first five spheres you will vastly reduce the risk of a Hoover Trigger being activated but you cannot state that it will never happen as it is reliant on if we happen to think of you. That may just be a random occurrence or it might be because we see something that reminds us of you.

The second factor is only applicable if the Hoover Trigger has been activated. The second factor is concerns the Hoover Criteria. These criteria include such matters as: –

–         Whether you are a potent source of fuel;

–         Whether you can easily be located;

–         Whether you can easily be contacted;

–         Whether you have your defences maintained concerning us;

–         Whether you remain mired in the emotional sea;

–         What support networks you have in place;

–         How well fuelled we are;

–         The nature of the narcissist who you entangled with (Lesser, Mid-Range or Greater); and

–         Potential obstacles

All of these matters combine to determine whether it is worthwhile us expending our energy to act on the Hoover Trigger. If we are presented with a sitting target, flowing with fuel, caught in the emotional sea, isolated and exposed then the criteria point heavily to the fact that a hoover will now take place. If on the other hand it is very hard to contact you, we know you have stopped flowing with fuel when dealing with us, you have people who will stop us trying to reach you and so forth, you become a Flawed Reason to Extract Emotion (F.R.E.E.).

For a worked example of how this can happen if someone enters the first sphere of influence I recommend that you read the article Hoover Time! Sphere One.

Accordingly, if you can do everything possible to become a F.R.E.E. then even if Hoover Trigger is activated then the chances of us executing that hoover will be considerably reduced. By contrast, if you fail to attain becoming a F.R.E.E. then you run the risk of a hoover being executed.

You will note that in the hoover criteria above there is no mention of the gap between when we last contacted you and the current time. There is no mention of the circumstances in which we parted company as the Formal Relationship. There is no mention of you knowing what we are, whether you told us, whether you exposed our abuses to others. Those are not factors which concern us. The existence of a new partner is not relevant either in isolation, but is only a partial consideration in terms of whether that person might stop us. Of course even if they might do so and all the other factors point to the execution of a hoover, this one criterion has diminished relevance.

Accordingly, when you are asking yourself whether a hoover may happen. Remember this.

  1. You can never say never.
  2. There needs to be a Hoover Trigger. You can significantly influence whether there is one and reduce the risk but you cannot remove it.
  3. The Hoover Criteria need to be met. Again, you can significantly influence whether the criteria are met by becoming a F.R.E.E. and reduce the risk, but you cannot remove it.

The issue of whether you will experience a hoover is not completely in your hands, but is far more within your control than you might at first have thought.

It is never the end but you are not helpless.

15 thoughts on “Surely That’s The End, Yes?

  1. Gracie Mac says:

    Very helpful article. I must admit that in my present state of mind, it gives me hope; both good AND bad! I just want to know how to stop “feening” for him. I don’t want him to contact me; but God have mercy on my miserable soul, I DO!!! A sane person would ask ” WHY???” I know it! (I won’t contact him; however.) I find myself on the verge more often than not, though. Sometimes I try to breathe through the frequent agonizing emotional occurrences . Most times I try to remember the negative interactions, verbal assaults and suffering I endured. This things have worked to stifle my urges fairly well to keep me from contacting him, so far. My BIGGEST problem is how to stop the constant thoughts and longings; the incessant pain, agony and tearful episodes.
    I keep hearing that time will be my only reprieve. Unfortunately; I keep time by counting the days (sometimes the seconds!) of sadness. I work, I associate with friends, and try most of the other he!pful, well meant suggestions. So far they offer very little comfort when I’m so inconsolably depressed…I’m just an emotional wreck right now; just trying to keep from throwing my self on the proverbial knife! I know I’m whining (often in conjunction with moaning, butching, and complaining!); but there are times, like tonight, when i!I’m having trouble “keeping it together!”
    I don’t have friends, relatives or acquaintances to talk to about any of this; as it is an illicit online affair. (God knows I wouldn’t be alive to talk about any of this if it was an actual physical affair! I would have committed suicide by now! But, I can’t imagine how it could hurt any more than it does!) This may sound like a silly situation; but it’s very real to me. I never would have believed it could have been possible; to fall head over heels in love with someone online, without ever having touched one another!
    Thanks to one and all who take the time to read my rambling rants.
    This venting actually prevented me from sending an email to him tonight!

    1. Mary says:

      Gracie Mac,

      I know you posted a while ago, and am not sure if you will see this, but I’m wondering how you are feeling now and if you’ve managed to avoid reaching out to him? Your situation does not sound silly at all. I too had an “illicit online affair” and found myself feeling everything you described. Especially when you said you don’t want him to contact you “but God have mercy on my miserable soul, I DO!!!” This was me a year ago. Anytime I would try to not check the app we used to communicate, it would send me into painful withdrawals. My stomach was inside out for hours, days, weeks at a time. If I got pulled back into chatting again, it quelled that aching for him temporarily, but then the mind fuckery all started up even worse every time. He took great pride and got off sexually on the manipulation itself. Messing with my head, I think, was more of a turn-on than even the sexual stuff we talked about. It took many months to stop pining for him after I ghosted him. However, after reading HG’s writings and the comments of other readers here, I finally accepted he was a creep and stopped second-guessing my own feelings. I hope you are out of the “emotional sea” as HG refers to it. Once you are out of it, you can see things more clearly, and it takes away that pining for him to contact you in your gut every second of every day.


  2. Scout says:

    Hi, Snow White, thanks for the compliment. Tbh It feels feels much longer than 4.5 months. Memories of the so-called good times are receding very slowly to be replaced with the full scale horror of what he got away with. I’ve been helped immensely by reading HG’S informative blogs and other NPD material to steer a steady retreat and not go under, but I have moments of genuine weakness; longing to discuss politics and poetry but he’s way too toxic for a normal con-flab, so I sit on my hands and I never get drunk so I don’t fall for the drink and dial routine!
    I wish you well Snow White.

    1. Snow White says:

      Wishing you well also Scout!
      Sitting on your hands is a great thing. Lol
      It reminded me of how my first few months played out. It was hard for me to not text me ex after getting and sending texts from morning til night.
      I found that this blog helped me with that hand problem. Lol… I’m glad you have found this blog helpful also.

  3. Maia says:

    He hoovered me a year ago when he found out I was seeing someone else, but I doubt very much he would try to hoover me again since I caused him a narcissistic injury and then outed him.

    I deactivated my facebook so he can’t use a flying monkey to spy on me. He doesn’t use Facebook himself as he’s paranoid about anyone knowing anything about him… ha ha, he’s made me as paranoid as him! He has used a fake account in the past just to check up on an ex, but my account was tightly locked down and I stopped accepting friend requests.

    I did wonder if he might make contact during a recent event when I know he would have been feeling very anxious and in need of fuel, but he didn’t, so either he has a new supply or he’s manned up a bit. He really is a pathetic excuse for a human being.

    I’m pretty sure that is the end of it.

  4. abrokenwing says:

    I was actually holding onto hope that he will come back for very long. It only prolong my suffering and my recovery.He moved on without looking back once , as I never existed …and I shall do the same.

  5. Thanks for this HG!

  6. sarabella says:

    I left an old FB account and most people we knew in common. I am ok with that as he didn’t entirely drive me away. I have turned FB into my own tool and most of those people on it do not serve that purpose for me. Which is only to remain in touch with my direct community and events. I do have an IG account and it’s open. But I really am not worried at all about him hoovering.

    Here is what I think about hoovering now…

    One of the things he used to say though when I was in Super Nova mode was, “WTF is wrong with you?” Well, he posted today something about how he has a FB friend for 9 years (sorta bizarre as she is his ex’s sister) and he tagged her and said, “how they love each other, fight, make up, make faces at each other, but in the end, are always friends as that is real friendship and respect.” And he posted it next to a FB meme from the woman’s page next to it about “How don’t you just want to grab someone some times and shake them and say WTF is wrong with you?”

    When I see these things (as I have not let go this one last thing looking at his page), I always think they are hidden hoovers for me. But they are not. Though it is very easy to think they are for me. Last time I talked to him, we started to fight. And he said, “Do you want to start that again, fight and all? Go back into that old stuff?” We found like crazy at one point. Mad crazy neck to neck. As the fighting started to pick up (again) I asked him how many people he has gone through driving home he is really messed up and drives people away and he is responsible for all the fighting, too. Well, a month later, he makes his Friends list public as it had been private for the past 4 years! Why? why such a move? I am glad, I was able to search it and see people that are no longer there confirming my thoughts. Easy to think I had somethign to do with it, as if to say, “See, I have all these friends, go look through it.”

    But when I see these things, and it doesn’t bother me anymore that he knows I look, I think they are hoovers. But then I remember the things he used to post when we were ‘active’ and I used to think they were for me, too. Then I found about all the ‘others’. They are bait for everyone. Anyone willing to bite.

    Point is, let them hoover that way if it works. Cause the bottom line is he will have to do soooo, sooo much for me to ever speak to him again and he just isn’t going to. And that is the part that needs all the healing, to know my worth and that it’s greater than his the little piddly hoovers which may or may not be for me. And if it sounds like it’s ‘for me’, that is only because whatever he does is marked with his ‘scent’ and he created that bond so of course it will feel like for me. Tailored to me. But its not. They are for anyone whose mind he is fucking and had fucked and that list is long I think.

    And I don’t think he knows that I have learned as much as I have for me to see these things for what they are, even if they are for me and god knows how many other people. But it also confirms one thing, I was always his and have been his since I was what, fucking 15 years old?!?! No wonder it got so sick and twisted so freaking fast. He never ever even had to get to know me this much later. Owning me was enough?! No need to see the nuances of who I am or what my life really is about or get to know me? So secure in his ownership?

    The only way he is ever going to hoover is if he thinks about it and me and he makes the effort. And he won’t as he will never concede this kind of power to me. He is more Mid than Greater in many ways. And he has no more cards to play to hoover me with. He used up his one and only entry to my life and showed he was lying all along and made a huge point last of saying that there is nothing between us, too, after all his made up lies that there was something. So he has no hoover material to throw my way. The only way any hoovers would work is if I react to anything by mistake (as I did a few times) thinking passive messages are for me as I had no idea the depth of his lying at the time to know they were for many other people, not me.

    Nothing is ever for me unless he sends me a very direct message and that is not going to happen. We will be in a power battle until one of us dies, but no one is going to reach out ever again becuase I get it all now more and more with my head and not my heart. I was told power battles get in the way of real relationships, communication, and friendship. They do. But what someone forgot to mention is that it takes both people to take an alternate path. And they can only stop if there is both or either one has something else more valuable than a power battle to bring. And that is all he has so in this case, no communication efforts will alter a darn thing. This IS who he is. I used to think if he just stopped, there would be right there, the real friendship. But it can’t happen. It’s impossible to happen with him. So no end to the power battle, no direct hoover. The power games is his friendship. And well, ugh. He played his one and only card and he has nothing else to play and he has enough other fuel sources that he won’t ever risk lighting me up again. And as he said once, when I tricked him, “even predators know when to cut their loses.” Can’t be any more instructive than that.

    1. M. says:

      Sarabella, what you wrote touched me a lot. I have been through this facebook game-fb was his hunting territory. I played for a long time, at first because I found it intriguing, later on because I was desperate for clues. This game is addictive and it kept me stuck in the twilight zone (as I call it).In fact, it kept me in the relationship. Yes, some of his posts are for you, others are for someone else and others are for the general victim audience. But do you deserve someone who is not focused on you? I do not think so.
      As far as the cards are concerned, well, there is always one more card for them to play. And one more. It is exactly what HG says: although it sounds incredible, they really feel we belong to them. There have been many times that I was sure there was absolutely no way for him to try to come back, I thought he would have nothing to say, or he would not even want to try. I was certain that I had destroyed all the roads. But, as you know, they are incredibly inventive. When there’s a will, there’s a way. The real change comes when we say we do not want them to come back and we mean it.

  7. Lydia says:

    Now that I have successfully escaped my ex (midrange) and thanks to this site and many others, I now understand why I longed for the hoover. I needed validation that I meant something, that I was someone who was “worth” coming back to. I was so ashamed for needing this toxicity, but my new found knowledge of NPD along with the understanding that it all started with my mother has helped me to realize that I don’t need anyone’s approval or validation. I no longer look for a hoover, in fact, I hope the 3 times that I’ve wounded him by ignoring him has caused him to think twice about coming around.
    Today and from now on I AM F.R.E.E.

  8. Scout says:

    Very helpful suggestions HG, thanks for sharing these tips.
    Despite sometimes wanting to see him I pat myself on the back for remaining NC these past 4.5 months. Last weekend he broke NC to tell me his mother had died suddenly. I didn’t know what to do. I didn’t want to break my NC rule but it felt too awkward a subject to ignore so I offered my condolences by email. He asked me to phone him. I didn’t.
    May I ask HG, would you have advised me to ignore him?
    It’s all gone quiet again. I don’t want him back. He will be furious his mother has died. I believe he will try harder to Hoover now. Do I maintain NC even in the likelihood of him having a “breakdown…’? If you would be willing to answer this question I’d be very grateful. Thank you. (I’m waving to you from Wuthering Heights and I’ll throw in a cartwheel too if you fancy). 😛

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Ignoring would have been best, however as an honest and decent person you did not want to seem uncaring about his mother and therefore sending a response by e-mail, thus demonstrating your decent nature whilst giving minimal fuel was certainly acceptable. The fact you did not ‘phone him, denied fuel and will have wounded him slightly, thus overriding any avenue created by the e-mail.

      Yes, maintain NC. He is not your responsibility. If he has a break down, let others assist him, not you.

      1. Scout says:

        Thank you kindly HG, your response is appreciated and has been most helpful.

    2. Snow White says:

      Hi Scout!

      I thought you did an excellent job at not contacting him. I would have felt the same way. That just reminds me of all the different things that can happen and give the narcs a reason to contact.
      Congrats on the 4.5 months.

      HG, I loved the “he is not your responsibility” line. It’s true and hard to remember. I will have to repeat that to myself.

  9. Anonymous says:

    I REALLY don’t think he will hoover me. What do I get if I’m right?

    I actually literally JUST reactivated my Instagram because I got sick of him running me off Instagram. Now I don’t even have an intention to use it, but it’s the principle. I realise this might be a hoover trigger, although I doubt he looks at my Instagram because I deactivated it over six weeks ago so he probably thinks it’s gone, or that I changed my name. It’s private anyway so not like he’ll see anything.

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