The Stare


The eyes feature prominently in an engagement with another person. You look into someone’s eyes to read them, to allow them to read you, you look away from someone in order to convey certain emotions, you fail to meet somebody’s gaze to convey others. I have written about the eyes of our kind previously but let us turn to a specific element of the use of eyes in the narcissistic dynamic and that is the stare.

Ordinarily, staring at another person is considered to be rude and ill-mannered, although it may denote fascination and even infatuation, but even that stare from a besotted admirer can be regarded as rude, never mind the unending gaze of a passer-by who cannot believe what he or she is witnessing. The stare when deployed by our kind takes on a different application altogether and it manifests at different times during your engagement with us.

  1. The Stare in Seduction

It is not used by all of our kind, but if you have been subjected to it, you will know it and you will remember it well. It was the time when those brilliant blue eyes locked with your own eyes and stared deep inside of you. Those flashing emerald eyes appeared transfixed as they stared at you. The rich brown eyes which seemed to melt as they gazed at you wavering. Whatever colour our eyes are, when you first received that seductive stare, the colour seemed to become brighter, the light shone in them and the intensity of our gaze was immense. It was not so much as being looked at, but rather an event in itself. Our steady stare was unusual as you probably had not experienced it from anyone else previously. You wanted to look away, torn between a sense of discomfort but the mesmerising quality of our eyes kept you looking back into them.

At that moment, our relentless gaze told you that you and only you mattered. There was nothing else of consequence in the universe. The background drained away, the surrounding sounds became muted and all distractions were removed. We wanted to show you that our devotion to you was beyond anything else. Only by allowing us to stare at you for such a long time were we able to convey the depths of our love, the vastness of our desire for you, the sheer scale of our need to be with you. Time slowed and then stood still, your skin tingled from the experience of this tantalising stare. Your breath caught in your lungs, your face seemed to flush and the wave of addiction washed across you, sending a shiver up and down your spine, around your neck and twisting your stomach. In that instant we became your universe as we showed you the world in our eyes.

Yet, what you really looked on as those two eyes continued to bore deep into you, was yourself. We commenced this engagement by knowing that to stare at you for an unconventional length of time would make you feel both uncomfortable and captivated so that you would then show us what was in your eyes. You would reveal to us your desire, your love, your hopes, your wants and your dedication. All we did was mirror back at you what you showed to us, amplified through the auspices of the mimicry for which we have become known. In that moment as we held your gaze from across the table, or after that kiss, or as we lay on top of you, we showed you yourself and thus sowed the seeds that caused you to fall in love with us, but really it was with yourself. That is why your love became something beyond anything that you had ever experienced before. That is why it was deep, powerful and absolute, because your subconscious saw what it wanted to see and this fired-up powerful and immense responses in you.

The world whirled in our eyes, your world. We offered limitless possibilities through the promise we mirrored back at you and by keeping you in this gaze we told you that we wanted you above anything and everything else. We wanted you. We wanted you. We wanted YOU.

  1. The Stare in Devaluation: Neutrality

In ‘Why Does He Seem Like A Different Person’, I explained about the stranger setting where the person who once lit up your life, becomes like a stranger, almost robotic. This is a change which occurs as the devaluation begins. It is not always present as some of our kind move straight into the dark abuses of the devaluation from the off, but there is a precursor to this when the person who once walked in with a cheery smile and a kiss, just enters and sits down, devoid of any prevailing emotion.

If you experience this, then you may also experience the stare at this juncture. This will be a hollow gaze which is accentuated by the blank expression that accompanies it. It is not a look of confusion or misapprehension; it is not a look of dimwittedness but is instead the empty stare of an empty person. You are looking at the void that exists within all of our kind. This represents the crossroads. The seductive stare glowed, fizzed and shone with the fabricated positive emotions which would cause you to respond with positive fuel. That has gone. The darkness of the devaluation has not yet commenced and its drawing of the negative fuel. Instead, you are looking at the in-between. The eyes which are devoid of warmth or hatred, empty of passion or malice, just a blank stare which conveys the void within.

This will cause you to become confused. It will have you ask whether everything is alright and have you wondering what has happened. You will be mystified as to where those mesmeric and scintillating gazes have gone. Why are you no longer looked at with that piercing and uplifting look? Where have we gone? If we had a soul, it is as if it has been sucked from within us, leaving only this husk behind. You cannot complain that you are being badly treated, since no abuses have yet been deployed against you. This empty and robotic stare is a warning of what is to come and should you see it in those you engage with, heed it and make good your departure because it is signaling to you that a far worse stare awaits you.

  1. The Stare in Devaluation: Malice

This, perhaps, is the stare that most associate with our kind. When you are subjected to our malicious stare, our eyes darken, emphasised by the contortion of our features which makes us appear like something else. The glowing greens, brilliant blues and blissful browns have vanished. The glinting grey eyes are no more, the halcyon hazel has been banished and instead a dark and glowering black has taken their place.

This gaze will cause you to shrink back under its impact. The hatred that is embodied in the ink darkness will turn you cold, send ice through your heart and is enough to even cause you to burst into tears. Terror will grip you because when this stare is deployed against you, you are seeing the evil in our core. The pure, unadulterated hatred which we have for you. It is seething, dense and vicious. It bears down on you, reminding you of your weaknesses and vulnerabilities, a blackened glare which keeps on driving at you, pressing down on you, forcing you to feel small and wretched.

You may have caught the occasional malicious glance from us, just a flash of hatred, but that is something else. Those glimpses were warnings which could only be used for an instant to avoid detection by third parties and the fracturing of the façade. This is a stare. Sometimes it may be accompanied by hissed words of threat and insult. Sometimes it is cloaked in silence, the balefulness a clear warning that a period of silence will now be visiting you.

The person that you thought we were will be utterly absent. Your world has been annihilated in an instant and replaced by two orbs of glinting black, which tell you that you are hated. Totally hated and that much worse will be visited on you in conjunction with this stare of concentrated evil.

  1. The Stare in the Discard

This is perhaps witnessed if you are actually told of your discard. More often, it appears post discard when you try to see us, to plead with us for answers, to beg us to take you back and so forth. This stare is one of pure contempt. Disdain and distaste for you. How on earth did we come to couple with one so weak, so pathetic and so disgusting as you. You make us shudder to think that we once even looked at you with favour, love and longing. The shame we feel at choosing someone like you is thrust to one side to be overridden by a contemptuous stare, that is designed to weaken you in your tracks and tell you that in no uncertain terms we want nothing to do with you. We have someone far better. This stare is to urge you to keep away and to forbid you from reminding us that we once promised you the world. We do not want to remember such matters. Somebody else receives those promises now. You are an unfortunate reminder of a part of us which we prefer to keep locked away and this stare conveys this through contempt and loathing.

  1. The Stare in the Hoover

The Malign Follow-Up Hoover as you would expect applies the same approach as the malicious stare detailed above. Should we make contact with you for the purposes of trying to convince you to return to us, whether it is post-discard or post-escape, we will look to hold your gaze once again. This time those eyes of ours will shine again but with hope, longing and contrition. Vulnerability, sorrow and remorse may appear to loom large in the rounded and pleading gaze which we now hold you in.

Once more this is pure artifice. All we are doing is mirroring what you show to us. The hope that we might have seen the error of our ways. The longing for us to come to the realisation that we have done wrong. The sorrow for a person who must behave in this manner. The remorse that you engaged with someone so vile. The longing that you have for the golden period to shine once again. It is all manufactured as we mirror back to you what we see but for the purposes of hoodwinking you once again and with mealy-mouthed assurances and never to be delivered promises, we hook you back into our grasp.

The stare is a prominent weapon when we engage with you. It is a device that fabricates those emotions we do not possess and allows you to see the reality of who you have entangled with when you look up on the emptiness and shrink from the malice.

43 thoughts on “The Stare

  1. SuperXena says:

    I tested myself and went back to read this article to see my reaction. This time it did not make me shiver like the first emotional reaction.It helped me instead to answer a question I had unanswered: what was I did not like of him the very first time I met my ex narcissist? What was it that make me feel something was awkward : now I know it was HIS EYES,
    Charming,smiling all the right faked mimics but when he smiled his eyes were not smiling .The eyes can’t fake. The mimics of the body did not equate the emptiness/void of his eyes.
    His eyes turned smaller, almost like a line when denoting malice.
    His eyes turned round denoting fury
    But his eyes were always empty like a deep dark hole/ void.

    Now I understand the meaning of the phrase” the eye is the window into the soul”.

  2. Dr. Harleen Quinzel PsyD. says:

    I’m the weirdo that likes the stare lol.

    Well…let me elaborate…I like the more reptilian stare not the dead stare.

    Staring contest anyone?

    1. Mary says:

      How does the reptilian stare look? I have seen the dead stare in pics of psychopaths like Bundy. Is the reptilian early on when they are hyper focused on you and in person you practically see them licking their lips, but through their eyes?

      1. Narc affair says:

        Ive seen a scary stare from my brother in law a few times. Hes scares me and im pretty certain hes a psychopath yet i always thought him a midranger bc he does act like one. Its ironic ted bundy was mentioned bc he looks and acts oddball like him. I think hes capable of almost anything if pushed. His stare is one of somebody whose lost everything and is dead inside and very troubled. Hes got deep seeded issues.

      2. Dr. Harleen Quinzel PsyD. says:


        Yes, pretty much lol. It can be perceived as like sexual intensity and can be pretty damn exciting.

        The reality is … that it’s a predator staring at his/her prey.

        Then there is that same kinda stare in a different context like fighting and then it’s like evil looking.

  3. Sillyolperson says:

    Narcissists have the most eagle eyes, don’t they and never miss a trick? I thought it would make some small impact in “my” favour as his last stare was across a crowded room, then gone ….. brrrr !!! Nevertheless, I shall forge on with my new “stoic” look or as they now say “resting bitch face” and my new “oversized” sunglasses for when the little weasel attempts his next Hoover / ghosting, which is about due, my birthday, (from my diary notes it’s about every 4 months) I guess I really need to work on my “caged lion” body language when he’s near …. haha. Of course I have no contact and no sphere zones in place, trying my damndest! They’re like pesky mosquitoes, just won’t go away! I think I gave him more fuel than all of Saudi Arabia … haha
    Thankyou for kindly responding and your advice Mr Tudor ….it seems, we’re damned if we do and damned if we don’t … damn !!!!

  4. Sillyolperson says:

    Dear Mr Tudor,
    How effective is “the stare”, if I’m wearing my sunglasses ? … 😎😂

    1. HG Tudor says:

      It remains effective, after all, you can see the stare still can’t you?

      1. Sillyolperson says:

        Surely, if I’m wearing my sunglasses, means there is no direct eye to eye contact, so I would not react and therefore he would not get the anticipated fuel he looking for ….. yes ?

        1. HG Tudor says:

          Your facial expression and body language will still react.

      2. Dr. Harleen Quinzel PsyD. says:


        Staring contest? I think I might have the edge on you this time since I’m on ADHD medication lmao!!

      3. Narc affair says:

        Dr H…if you dont mind which med are you on for adhd? We have our daughter on vyvanse only 10 mg daily. I found any higher she had no appetite and got weepy once it wore off in the afternoon. I cringe at using meds of any kind but we thought it might help. It did help a bit with focus and boosted her confidence.

      4. Dr. Harleen Quinzel PsyD. says:

        Narc affair,

        I’m on 60 mg of regular (not time release) 2x daily.

        Yes, stimulant medication will do those things. There are ways around it. Like I eat things that go down easy (yogurt) when I’m on it – well used to – because I don’t have those issues anymore because I’ve been on it since I was a teen.

        You definitely don’t wanna eat when you are on it. That is why I used to and still do eat before you take it and like I said you could always try yogurt, cereal- things that just go down….

        Now I literally eat whatever lmao!

        Time release lasts longer so your kid probably doesn’t wanna eat most of the day until like late at night.

      5. Dr. Harleen Quinzel PsyD. says:

        Narc affair,

        Sorry i didn’t write it correctly …

        30 mg morning
        30 mg afternoon

        So 60 mg regular a day

        I didn’t like time release you get little spurts up and down all day…

      6. Dr. Harleen Quinzel PsyD. says:

        Narc affair,

        I had a total ADHD moment lmao!!!

        I’m on adderall …holy hell thats what I get for multitaskign while writing blog comments !!


      7. Dr. Harleen Quinzel PsyD. says:

        Narc affair,

        Vyvance and adderall are in the same little family of medication – amphetamines

  5. 12345 says:

    In the golden period my ex greater referred to it as eye fucking. That was the only time he was good at fucking.

    1. NarcAngel says:

      I have referred to an ugly girl as a skull fuck but eye fuck made me laugh. So if it wasnt the great sex, what was your attraction to hiim or caused you to continue with the relationship? Not judgement-just curiosity if youre open.

      1. 12345 says:

        I was 16 when I went to work for him. He was 34. I was really easy prey. This sounds stupid but none of my parents (mom, dad, first stepdad) had ever said anything good to me. He told me I was smart, physically beautiful but even more beautiful on the inside, funny, that he loved talking to me…you know the drill. I’d never heard any of it. Quite the opposite actually. He didn’t even need a penis at that point. I was desperate to be affirmed and he knew it.

        Our second go around when I was 45 and he was 63 was pretty much for the same reason plus a hefty dose of my own stupidity but by then I was very resentful about the sex or lack thereof. I stayed because I looked for my worth in him again. Not so smart when the golden period ends. I’m my own worst enemy.

    2. Dr. Harleen Quinzel PsyD. says:


      I just died lol 🤣

      Was thatvreally the only time he was good at fuxking?

      What a waste lmao!

      1. 12345 says:

        He was never good at sex. I am so envious of those that say “the sex was so amazing I just couldn’t leave the narc”. Not me! The only fucking he mastered was mind fucking. I mean he tried but “it” just didn’t work. I mean ever. I’m literally talking about 9 seconds tops. Kinda makes me feel sorry for him but he deserves it. What hooked me was all the words. He got in my head.

  6. Khaleesi says:

    I grew up with the stare so it shouldn’t have been entirely unexpected when it happened with my exnarc. Of course, this was bHG, so it was. I didn’t know the signs. I didn’t understand that his loving stare was a red flag and a prelude to the contrasting stares that would follow.

  7. P says:

    reptiles, mammals and moderns

  8. Sunniva says:

    The stare was my first “psychopathic tell” ineteracting with the N. I did not know that back then, but I do remember how it made me feel.
    My gut feeling told me to be aware around that man, so the lesson to always trust your instinct is now learned.

    We were a group of friends on a mountain trip, and had been downhill skiing together all day.
    After dinner and drinks I dozed off infront of the fire place. When I woke up I caught him starring at me from across the room. Wow…those eyes…the glare reminded me of doll eyes. It took him a few seconds to see that I was awake, and in the blink of an eye his mask was back on and the mirror specialized for me was intact again.
    I remember I was glad he would only stay for one night.

  9. Star says:

    I have noticed a few people mention on various blogs of seeing the narcs eyes turn black. I have also seen this with my ex. HG has anyone ever said that they noticed the same with you?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      They have Star.

      1. Hope says:

        Any chance of a future post, HG – describing the specific event that led up to her telling you that your eyes appear black? And, what your immediate response to her was. Thank you

        1. HG Tudor says:

          I have made a note with regard to an article about this.

      2. Star says:

        Eeeks…😲you are so helpful to so many, I sometimes forget you really are who you say you are.Damn it, I still have so much to learn lol

      3. Brian says:

        Do the eyes appear black because of dilated pupils?

        1. HG Tudor says:

          In part.

    2. Anna C says:

      My narc’s eyes were naturally obsidian. It was one of the strangest things I’d ever seen.

      1. HG Tudor says:

        ‘obsidian’ is a good word like ‘plinth’

  10. Narc affair says:

    A bit off topic but i got thinking today about the fact since being in this narcissistic relationship i now have a hard time looking people in the eye. I feel very intimidated. People i know im ok with but people ive just met or walk by i find it unnerving to look them in the eye. Its uncomfortable. I reflected on why this is and its from the years of devaluing. Its really chipped away my confidance and how i feel about myself thru other’s eyes. Its almost a feeling of shame which has been projected upon by the narc. Its something i want to work on changing within myself. The eyes portray so much and when you have experienced emotional or any other type of abuse you want to protect your innermost feelings and automatically want to avoid eye contact. Its really sad when you realise why you feel you cant look a person in the eye and be on the same level as them.

    1. NarcAngel says:

      Narc Affair

      Look up. Not with the intention of giving any of your innermost feelings away, but with the understanding that most of those people you avoid looking at carry some form of shame also. When you do, you will see a lot of people looking down as you were. There really is no other level, but when you look down you create one for yourself. So look up.

      1. Violet says:

        I agree NarcAffair. Once we have been wounded it’s natural to look for a remedy in others. But they are thinking all sorts of other things busy with this and that, and who has spent the most time with you to know you best? That’s you!
        The narc pounds is with doubt and mistrust to keep us close, just to become a sacrifice for their problem. I’m struggling now with the hatred. The pure, personal, intentional hatred. I was reminded of what an inferior, weak, boring person I was every day and tried so hard to stop the abuse, overstimulating myself and over-acting when it is driving a wedge between me and myself.
        Then, the next minute, adoration and being used as a prop.
        I don’t want to look at people either. But when we have made ourselves feel good maybe our filter will protect us.

      2. Narc affair says:

        Narcangel and violet…ty for your replies. I agree its important to break that mindset and grab my dignity back by looking people in the eye. It really hit me yesterday that this had changed and i know why. Its all i feel that ive hidden beneath the surface. Ive stuffed it away and its the subconscious knowing its ready to burst. The same goes for thinking too much about any of it in public i refrain from certain thoughts bc i know ill break down in tears.
        I was watching a clip on facebook the other day of princess diana being asked about her marriage and her eyes spoke volumes…shame, sadness, pain, brokedness. Thats what i feel my eyes would portray if i were to look people in the eyes. For empaths and genuine people we find it hard to hide who we are but narcs can hide it well and their eyes can too thats why they can change so drastically.

  11. Klm says:

    I hated that stare. He would get on top of me, pin my arms down and just stare at me and his blue eyes would turn black. It was like he was trying to stare me into submission….scared the hell out of me.

  12. gabbanzobean says:

    It is reflected in the voice as well. So I have learned.

  13. Violet says:

    I suppose I sounded earlier like she deserved empathy but it wasn’t worth it. The Stare was used to gather fuel after I had spent a long period helping her out of difficulty and then she’d launch a character assassination with downright evil acid spitting at my face. I should have then realised she wasn’t worth it. But for some reason I kept fighting to have love. I just didn’t know what a personality disorder was.

  14. NarcAngel says:

    Indeed a formidable weapon. The stare of hatred and of the void in Stepnarc-indicators of his mood and what was to follow. Later I experienced the others: The stare of seduction was so intoxicating when first experienced, the reptilian stare one of curiosity and interest to me, and the glazed over eyes feigning contrition or sadness made me question briefly if I was wrong about their ability to feel (until reviewed with their actions and words). Twice I saw glazed eyes though that held not sadness, but anger and contempt and gave me pause for my safety. Funny thing is that in most people I know (as in normals), I could not even tell you their eye colour-it fails to register with me.

    Two of them I recall specifically, broke the stare and said: I’m sorry, I was staring.
    Is that something you say to emphasis to us how captivated you are with us and just an act? Or are you really caught up in thinking we are the one?
    I ask because in the beginning you say you actually are infatuated and think we could be.

  15. Violet says:

    I am glad you reposted this HG, as on reflection, the eyes direct so much of the play.
    I would like to share as well my first memories and realising my parents had a problem. I noticed their eyes were brighter and more fixed on me than others. I observed them a lot of course and after a time realised my mother was surprised to see someone who kept looking at her with love. She was taken aback always when I smiled at her like that unconditionally and it was then I put two and two together to watch her parents and realised she had missed out. This resulted in her lack of insight.
    She had no mirror and so she couldn’t see herself.
    It was all in the eyes. Her parents didn’t give her that crucial eye contact and so she did not trust it from me.

  16. Patricia J says:

    Wow! Spot on what I experienced in a 12 year ordeal with my greater Narc.

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