The Errors of the Ignorant – No. 5

PERHAPSIF YOUTRIED TO BEMOREUNDERSTANDING

A series based on the comments made by people who fail to understand the true nature of narcissists and the narcissistic dynamic. Whilst these comments may be well-intentioned, they are incorrect, perpetuate misunderstandings and in many cases create false hope, dashed expectations and perilous outcomes.

“Perhaps if you tried to be more understanding.”

You are at your wit’s end. You are in devaluation at the hands and tongue of one of our kind. Nothing makes sense. You are told that we love you on Saturday and then on Sunday you are berated as a whore and you have no comprehension as to why. You are lambasted repeatedly through the imposition of name-calling, physical violence, triangulation, unfavourable comparisons, silent treatments and more. You may hear sentences such as:-

“I am sick of you trying to make me look bad.”

“Why will you never just do what I want to do? Why does it always have to be about you?”

“Stop talking over me. I can never make myself heard around you.”

“If you loved me, you would do it.”

“Why can’t you just leave me alone?”

“Why won’t you be more supportive?”

“You never help me anymore.”

There are thousands of similar comments and the worst of it makes no sense. Let’s return to each of these comments and accusations and beneath them detail what you have been actually doing and therefore this is why your confusion has arisen.

“I am sick of you trying to make me look bad.”

You do not recall ever having said anything bad about us, on the contrary you are also telling us how brilliant we are and you say this about us to other people. You never speak beyond the home about our horrible behaviours.

“Why will you never just do what I want to do? Why does it always have to be about you?”

You always do what we want. You cannot recall the last time you chose what we did or even did something on your own which you wanted to do. In fact, you find yourself always pandering to what we want.

“Stop talking over me. I can never make myself heard around you.”

You do not do this or if you have once in a while it is only because you are trying to make yourself heard as we keep ignoring you.

“If you loved me, you would do it.”

You do love us. You tell us this every day.

“Why can’t you just leave me alone?”

You give us time and space to do our own things but then we complain that you do not spend enough time with us.

“Why won’t you be more supportive?”

You are always looking out for us, looking after us and caring for us.

“You never help me anymore.”

You feel like an indentured servant.

The reality of what you experience does not accord at all with what we are describing but you just cannot understand why we are saying these things. Your head is spinning, you know we are not stupid but each time you try to show us that you do help us out, that you are supportive and so forth, you are accused of provoking an argument, of trying to control us or making us look bad. You try to explain, appease and apologise but it just seems to lead to more arguments or us storming off and disappearing. You are at your wit’s end.

You finally discuss this perplexing situation to someone else and they offer the advice that perhaps you just need to be more understanding. You feel like already are very understanding, but as an empathic person you are not only committed to making this relationship work, you are also willing to try more, try harder and try, try and try. Your advisor has explained that it might be that we struggle to convey how we really feel, that our words are not exactly what we are feeling and that it is a case of giving us time to express ourselves and by being more understanding we will finally understand what it is that is causing the problem. This makes sense to you because you are an understanding person and because you have not been able to understand so far, then why not try some more and perhaps you will make the breakthrough. It finally adds up and of course, desperate to make sense of this bewildering situation you are willing to try.

It will not work.

You are attempting to understand something which you cannot understand because you and your advisor have not grasped who it is you are dealing with. One of our kind. This means that you do not realise that we approach the world from the Narcissistic Perspective, using Toxic Logic. This makes perfect sense to us, but is perplexing to you. You cannot equate our behaviours to what you see and hear in front of us but neither will you, because you do not know what we are.

You do not realise that we must draw fuel. You do not realise that we must maintain the upper hand at all times. You do not realise that narcissistic criticism wounds us. You are unaware of the three types of interaction as described in Fuel, Fight or Flight. Since you do not realise that these are the pertinent considerations you do not grasp that when we perceive you as not paying us attention, our fury is ignited and we lash out by claiming that you do not support us.

You do not understand that we ignore the fact that you are supportive because in that moment we need fuel and if this means being contradictory and hypocritical, then so be it. You do not realise that we compartmentalise so that what happened yesterday is separate, distinct and not linked to what is happening now. You look for consistency, evidence supporting the proposition or rejecting our allegation. We do not look at it in this way and the more you try to understand and in turn the more you try to get us to understand, the more you fail to get anywhere.

You will keep applying your logic. You will keep thinking we must surely see what you are referring to. You will expect us to approach the situation from your perspective and this is completely wrong.

Once you understand our perspective, flawed and fucked-up as it may appear, you make a massive breakthrough. Suddenly you realise why we flare up over (apparently) nothing. Now you understand why we change our stance in the blink of an eye. Now you make sense of our (apparently) disproportionate response. You still think it is bizarre, ridiculous and astonishing but now you get it and the relief is incredible.

Unfortunately for you, you listened to the wrong advisor who does not know what we are and does not understand us. Instead, they suggest you try to be more understanding and you may as well flog a dead horse for all their mis-guided advice will achieve for you.

 

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36 thoughts on “The Errors of the Ignorant – No. 5”

  1. HG what does it mean when he says he’s scared? The context was i asked him how he felt anout me and he said “intrigued, captivated, excited, Scared and very turned on by you, all at the same time” what the heck does scared mean? I wasnt going anywhere so it’s not loss. I didnt even think narcissists could feel fear, or is it BS? Thank you

    1. Lower echelon narcissist’s feel fear – in this context he is just using scared for the purposes of making you think there is a barrier between you which you need to break through, thus he makes you try harder and this provides him with more fuel and binds you closer to him.

      1. Wow. That was subtle, I’m amazed how there is not one sentence he wrote that wasn’t used to manipulate me somehow. I left soon after he wrote that and now he is stalking the hell out of me and I’m scared. I’m following your advice and maintaining no contact, but it’s still unnerving. I hope his “addiction” wears off soon. Thanks for taking the time to answer my question. I would have never ever come to that conclusion on my own.

  2. J. Keith Miller, book Compelled to Control, wrote that most of our fears are an attempt to conceal our true identity from others. We are afraid that if people know who we really are, what we really think, and what we are capable of doing, we will be rejected. And since we do not want to be alone, we “polish up our outer personages until we honestly believe they are real to us.”

    Excerpt from Compelled to Control

    Introduction

    Something is wrong in America.

    A great, unseen vibration is shaking the country, causing ripples—then waves—of anxiety, stress, anger and shame. These waves sweep across boundaries of race, gender, class and education into the lives of almost everyone. Even those apparently protected by wealth, power and religion are not immune.

    The vibration that threatens to shake us apart is fear.

    We are a nation of people who fear we are not “enough.” Deep in the recess of our hearts, in places we rarely reveal even to ourselves, we feel shameful and inadequate—and we’re terrified someone will find out. We live in constant fear that our shortcomings will be exposed to family, to friends, to the world. We wake up at night reliving a mistake and feel overwhelmed with shame.

    We worry. Our personal relationships don’t satisfy, nor do other aspects of our lives. We are lonely and frustrated, our marriages often end in separation or divorce, our children are estranged. In an effort to “fix it” we may turn to compulsive or addictive behaviors, only to find that our unconscious attempts to cover the pain are unsuccessful, too, and bring only more loneliness and fear.

    We look everywhere for someone or something outside of ourselves to blame or complain about, for something to kill the pain and bring us peace. But when we increase our efforts to find happiness, we come face to face with the uncomfortable feeling that we are “not doing it right.” Our desperate strivings leave our fundamental issues untouched. Blaise Pascal, the French philosopher, viewed this phenomenon another way: “We are complaining about the ants at the picnic when the bears are eating our children.”

    Life in the last decade of the century has changed our experience of time. Our grandparents seemed to live a life of relative serenity, moving at a steady pace down the quiet river called Time, on a strong but invisible current. As they paddled downstream, they heard the sounds and felt the pulse of life in the river and on the surrounding banks. The slower pace of life allowed them to live more in harmony with the flow of the water, the chirping of birds on shore, the scudding of clouds overhead.

    But in today’s world, we race downstream as if on a giant speedboat, ignoring the natural current of the river that flows, we think, too slowly for us to do all we must do. We grapple with time, try to expand it in our accelerating race to get more and more accomplished in a day, a week, a year, than anyone in the past ever dreamed of doing. In our race against the clock, we have created a fast-paced reality in which a person who elects to work “only” an eight-hour day has little chance to get ahead or climb the corporate ladder. As we zip through our days and nights, all we see and hear of the river bank is an unrecognizable blur.

    By some miracle our minds can move faster and faster—but our feelings cannot. They still conform to the steady flow of the river. When our minds and feelings don’t match up, we learn to disconnect from our feelings. We believe our feelings hamper us in keeping up our overcommitted, accelerated pace.1 Our emotions become sealed off or grossly exaggerated, and “emotion” becomes a dirty word. Even people related by the close bonds of family pass each other in the halls of their lives numbly, without really connecting.

    Couples may eat together or even “make love,” but our lives seem to be happening to other people. Gradually we move into our heads and live there, exhausted and alone, walled off from ourselves and from those closest to us. We vaguely hear the voices of our loved ones but tend to lose touch with their tender feelings—and with our own.

    Our answer is to try frantically to gain control of our work, our schedule and our relationships. Our control attempts leave in their wake some very unhappy mates, lovers, children and parents who make up our nuclear families. Even our friends and co-workers are affected. There are few truly happy campers in the world of a controller.

    There are millions of controllers—and we are burning out at an incredible rate. Our relationships are hollow, ragged, distant. We’re exhausted and feel totally alone inside, even though we may be surrounded by people. Instead of achieving that serene and happy life that our frantic, controlling activity was supposed to produce, we have tense stomachs and bruised or broken relationships.

    Fortunately, there is a way out and many controllers are taking it. It begins by emotionally disembarking from that speedboat. Some of us can step back and make a rational decision to jump off. Others are hurled off when our overcontrolling gets out of control, leaving us with unmanageable lives. To our horror, we discover that no matter how hard we try to tighten our grip, we are truly powerless.

    For some controllers a light comes on. Gradually we become aware that we don’t need another degree, a promotion to president of the corporation or a net worth in the millions to find serenity. We make an astonishing discovery: The only possible way to get control is by giving up controlling. It’s a paradox that is not easy to comprehend. But it is so.

    I know firsthand. In recent years I have traveled the United States on speaking engagements and have met thousands of people. Everywhere I go, I find concerned professionals and disturbed lay people who want to know how to solve problems in intimate family and romantic relationships.

    My journeys have given me many opportunities to investigate the causes and cures of dysfunction in intimate relationships. Addiction is blamed, and co-dependence. But what is the underlying cause of addiction and co-dependence? I find that the culprit is usually the compulsion to control. It is a disease and it is reaching epidemic proportions.

    This book is the culmination of my search to isolate the causes and cures of painful breakdowns in intimate relationships. Since 1987, I have written and coauthored four books exploring these issues. Compelled to Controlfocuses specifically on the tragic loss of intimacy, and points to principles of healthy intimacy and new ways to live creatively.

    In this book I will explore the process of recovery from the control disease and describe a way to make your way back to reality-oriented, loving relationships with spouses, lovers, children, parents and friends.

    The recovery process brings the hope of living sanely—with courage and serenity.

    H.G. are you familiar with his writings?
    If so, do you think he’s one of the supposed relationships experts that are misleading people?
    Do you think he’s a sociopath narcisst?

    Thank you in advance for your response.

  3. When He told me “You understand me better than anyone”, it felt like the greatest compliment ever. All he meant was “Wow, are you compliant”.

    Now that I “understand” him with my conscious mind, I have silently countered his machinations and deal-breaking behaviors with a shocking disappearance.

    He scrambles to stabilize his matrix. Dysphoria is real. I understand I don’t have to witness it…I was his sounding board on many a slipped-mask late night to understand how he copes.

    I understand this was no fair exchange contract for me.

    Understanding freed me.

    Better late, than never.

  4. HG, what does it mean when he says “I’m afraid of you, I’m afraid of what you can do to me” ? It was said in the context (I think) of him being afraid I would cheat on him and crush his heart. or afraid I would walk away from him (which I had done previously).. and he lost 23 lbs in 30 days because he was devastated.

  5. Yes, they did, well meaning friends who have been charmed by him. Still not sure why I was subjected to devaluation as an IPSS. It happened so quickly too.

    Dr Harleen, is that on the psychopath you were with?

    1. Here is my track record for psychopaths and narcissists in an intimate type of relationship….

      14yrs old met my first psychopath – never ina. Relationship but had this strange on and off friends with occasional benefits thing until now (I’m 30)

      20 yrs old and I turned 21 while being with him – now in retrospect I think I was with a lower narc for like 9 months – possessive, jealous, controlling, would scream at me, I recognize I contributed to that relationship or his jealousy in the beginning but changed and it made no difference….it became crazy I was staring into outer space waiting with him to be seated at a restaurant and he was like “so you wanna fuck that guy over there” … n u t s

      22 yrs old – met a textbook psychopath we hung out for like two months and dated officially for two months (ball park estimate)

      23 -24 yrs old – first mid range narcissist that I had since I was a teenager he was about five years older than me or six … was with him for a year ….that was torture

      24-25 yrs old- met my ex mid range narc… the affair started when I was 24 but it turned into a full physical affair when I turned 25 and that’s when we started dating … I was with him until I was 29

      And now here I am lmao …. single for a little over a year for the first time since I’ve been 16 lol the list above doesn’t list all my boyfriends and people I have spent time with just so u know…those are the ones that stand out lmao

      The comments I have made in this post refer to my most recent ex narcissist who is a mid ranger

      1. Thanks for sharing. Sounds like so much hard work but the more I have reflected over the last few months, the more I think I’m the same. There is only one person I have been with who isn’t a narc and I’m sure now that I must’ve scared him somehow as I’m so used to being tough-ish with all the narcs and my mind is constantly battling their manipulation, I probably subconsciously subjected him to mind games that he wasn’t playing at all.

        Do you find only narcs/paths are good enough for you / exciting?

      2. Bliss,

        I certainly don’t do it on purpose lmao.

        Narcs… no – generally speaking narcissists annoy me. However, HG doesn’t annoy me he would be the exception.

        Psychopaths…yes

        I am drawn to psychopaths… that is something I notice. It has always been that way for some reason. The psychopaths are drawn to me and I am drawn to them…

        I get bored very easily and what better to spice things up than a psychopath lmao…

        On a serious note I think I am drawn to them because I am an extroverted female who is bored very easily and happens to need a certain level of stimulation. I think they also allow me to be myself because they understand and accept things about me that other people wouldn’t.

        Honestly, most if not all of the ones I have come across are not judgmental at all. There is a strange Ying and yang between us that I don’t even quite understand.

        Even professionally, the cluster b personalities especially the narcs, sociopaths, and psychopaths love talking to me. The common theme among all of them would be they say I can see their perspective and I don’t judge them. They are most psychologists least preferred population but I honestly find that fascinating and we typically get along very well. We learn a lot from one another and I’ve helped them in many ways. I certainly don’t cure them – it’s not about that – I help them channel their … let’s say… talents…into to more prosocial behaviors. I am certainly not always successful lmao but for that moment in time they don’t feel so alone and they appreciate that I educate them on themselves.

        You would be surprised what these clients have said to me. Some tell me that they want to be loved and find someone and that they want to be loved. I know it sounds strange….

        I give them some kind of hope of finding someone who they can in some weird way connect to… notice how I didn’t say attach.

        There are different subtypes of psychopaths so it could be the particular types I deal with.

      3. Bliss,

        I was just thinking….

        I remember when my first psychopath and I were younger…we were constantly… and I mean constantly playing games with eachother.

        I remember asking him “why do you keep doing this to me” and he said “you play back” “this is why I like you… I wanna fuck your mind” – he wanted to mindfuck me but it was more of like a sexual turn on. He still says from time to time “just talking to you gets me hard” – that was probably a rare nugget of truth.

        When I ask him now am I like the typical women you target/go for… he would say “no”…

        He always says “you still don’t know why I like you?” And then proceed not to tell me…

        So yeah I don’t completely get it….

      4. You are so beautiful, like my daughter (she is 27). Like her, you never seem to have been without a boyfriend since you were 16. Her first love of 3 years (first sex for her) was a narc. I just recently found this out. I never knew he had treated her so badly. If I had, I would have punched him in the nuts!!! I think I have had 5 REAL boyfriends in my whole life. sigh.

      5. I have read that they are generally attracted to intelligent extroverts. Although I am just a naive, silly, shy girl (or nowadays I wonder if make myself one due to the dynamics between me and narcs). Reading what you are able to do just makes me feel even more so! It’s brilliant, that they love talking to you and it makes them want to(?) behave in a less anti-social manner.

        I know what you mean by getting annoyed – you would’ve got annoyed with my ex-narc. I was with a sociopath recently (he said he was diagnosed sociopath but I do wonder because I’m sure he is a psychopath but I’m probably talking nonsense and don’t know the difference) and you would never catch him saying that he wants to be loved. Lol! I was no match for him and maybe that’s why I ended up falling for him. It was more addiction than love, probably more being submissive due to losing in this game of love.

        There was a little tug of war to begin with and funnily enough it was me who uttered the words “I’m starting to get bored of you!” first! lol! He caught me being extremely unemotional in the relationship, and because he analyses things a lot (he actually taught me so much during the golden period and that’s why HG’s words are all so familiar to me, as though they are from him), I remember wondering if I was a ‘path myself at the time. I said various things that probably caught his attention like telling him I would never be affected by him no matter what happens based on my past experiences (I was wrong yet again). There were many things he admitted to but at the beginning he simply would not admit to – for example – being in contact with many women, whereas I knew from day 1 that he was. I even said casually many a times to him that I knew but he always denied it. Odd that he confessed to many horrendous crimes and manipulative ways yet denied something as simple as flirting or being in relationship with countless other women. But I guess that’s what they are and that served his purpose at the time trying to get me hooked and it’s what he had to say. I didn’t believe him anyway but I stuck with him. The excitement and addiction and sex was just too appealing.

        Interested hearing more about subtypes of psychopaths.

      6. RS,

        Thank youuuu 😀

        I feel like your daughter and I would be great friends lol!

      7. Dr HQ, I did a long reply to you but it seems to have disappeared. Was I that tired?! Just to say I did read and respond.

    2. Along the way I have attracted borderline men (yes they do exist) and ones that had anxiety and who had mood disorders.

      There have been a few others I look back and think…. hmmm possible narcissists

  6. #FML if only I could submit this in lieu of my presence to the judge. You tell it better than I ever could/can. For fox sake I want to scream this blog from mountain tops!

  7. My ex would randomly lash out about the way I speak. I would say a plural word like eggs (which I would have said the day before the exact same way with no reaction) and he would say it’s eggS (with emphasis on the s and a nasty tone) or act like I don’t talk clearly and then go on and on about how and say he doesn’t want to spend the rest of his life asking me what I just said. Once he asked me why don’t I talk clearly and I said IDK and he said I don’t understand how you don’t know why you don’t talk clearly I feel like we are going to get married and you are gonna tell me the real reason why you don’t talk clearly. Since we broke up I have probably asked 50 people (most of whom I don’t know) if I talk clearly and not one person had anything to say negatively about how I talk.

  8. There’s no understanding. How pathetic the mid range thinking he’s leaving a legacy. Questions my purpose on earth, while he’s running around masked. Take that mask off maybe then I will understand.

  9. Would you believe me
    If I said I am tired of this
    How here we go now one more time

    I tried to climb your steps
    I tried to chase you down
    I tried to see how low I could get down to the ground
    I tried to earn my way
    I tried to tame this mind
    You better believe that I tried to beat this

    So when will this end
    It goes on and on
    Over and over and over again
    Keep spinning around i know that it won’t stop
    Till I step down from this for good

    I never thought I’d end up here
    I never thought Id be standing where I am
    I guess a kind of thought it would be easier than this I guess
    I was wrong now one more time

    I tried to climb your steps
    I tried to chase you down
    I tried to see how low I could get down to the ground
    I tried to earn my way
    I tried to tame this mind
    You better believe that I tried to beat this

    So when will this end
    It goes on and on
    Over and over and over again
    Keep spinning around
    I know that it won’t stop
    Till I step down from this
    Sick cycle carousel,
    This is a sick cycle, yeah
    Sick cycle carousel…

  10. he hated the fact that I knew and understood that he was a fake.

    Oh he used to go nuts when I would call him a fake and a phoney to his face.

    “I’m sucha nice guy”
    “You make me sound like sucha bad guy”

    Well… that’s because he is just a bottomless pit of lies….

    I would look at him and I would see this cardboard cut out… nothing was there. It was if he has no past or future…just the present.

    He couldn’t even see that every single relationship was the same from start to finish….

    Like a fucking residual ghost playing that same event over and over again with no awareness…

    1. Same here..she hates it and tries her darndest to deceive..I have a surprise for her..she will not be happy..it does not master to me..I don’t care how it will affect her..it’s been long over due..may God help me to stay strong and steadfast in exposing her to the world

  11. What’s amazing to me is that in many ways I understood all too well…

    He hated it… he hated that I saw right through him and other people.

    He hated that I saw almost every motive and almost every lie.

    He didn’t understand anything…especially how people work and how to size them up.

    He hated me for everything that I am.

    He hated that I could rip out his insides and show it to him.

    He hated that I would sometimes make him look at himself.

  12. No.

    All I’m going to say is… No.

    Lol.

    Wait I lied… I’m going to say something lmao…

    I was more than understanding…

    You can understand but you don’t have to take someone’s crazy shit…

    I even reframed all of the things I said to him because he was so sensitive to everything…

    He often would say after a huge fight when I threatened I would leave “if I can’t make it with you I can’t make it with anyone”

    He got that right… he actually got that one right…

    No matter what I did… no matter how much I adapted…reframed my speech and did what he wanted it was never enough….

    oh I understand clearly he never wanted me to be myself in any capacity he wanted an emotional punching bag that he could abuse and would just go along with everything he said…

    He didn’t understand …

    He didn’t understand me…anything about me

    He never knew me – I was someone else. He knows like nothing about me ….

    Now I’m relieved he never knew me – I laugh about it now….

    We were both strangers parading around as if we were in a relationship.

    1. Hi HQ. I too adapted how I approached him and rephrased everything in the hope we could just have a normal discussion without the over-egged hysteria and the abuse. It was all to no avail. The exhaustion and the mind-fuckery and abuse brought me to the edge.

      1. Scout…

        I hear you 100%…

        Mine was impossible to talk to.

        Their mental filter is like completely warped. It was as if he heard something completely different – as if we were speaking two different languages.

        Every word that I uttered turned into some kind of argument. I would sit there and say “how did you connect those dots? How did you get from point a to point z?”

        It was truly astounding how I could have made a comment about the weather or about something totally unrelated to him and he would find some way to take the other persons side or attack me.

        I couldn’t tell him anything about anyone because he would run his mouth and would throw me under the bus so he could get chummy with people.

        That man – sorry – that man-baby – knew nothing about me or how my mind works. He had no interest in anything regarding me.

        What I found pretty mind blowing is that he had an extensive vocabulary and could write very well; however there was no content there. There were a whole lot of words with no substance.

        His vocabulary sometimes exceeded mine but it was if he was like pulling out whatever .50 cent GRE words he could remember lmao. You know, the ones that no one really uses. He lacked any kind of practical problem-solving or higher order reasoning. His thinking was extremely rigid. He knew a lot of geography (something I’m totally clueless about lol) and he could pick up languages very quickly.

        The only time he could contribute to conversation was if the topics were: beer, Brazil, sports, and working out.

        I’m sure he is also knowledgeable on the underground gay or bi sex scene – stop and rides, blow Jobs in parks, trannys, and strap ons, and small penis humiliation.

        I have nothing to say on those topics.

        I guess I am boring after all lol.

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