Raising the Hoover Bar




The hoover. It is one of the most discussed periods of the narcissistic entanglement. I am referring to it in the traditional sense, namely the three post-discard/escape hoovers, although as you will be aware from my works, there are other hoovers throughout the interaction between us and you.

There are most likely two reasons for the post discard/escape hoover being a prime topic of discussion. First, by the time you have worked out what you are dealing with you will have already experienced the seduction, devaluation and discard/escape. The post discard/escape hoover is what is occupying you now because it may have happened recently, is ongoing, or you anticipate it happening. The second reason is that the possibility of ongoing interaction with us continues to fascinate you and thus the post discard/escape hoover becomes the focus of much of your attention.

I have explained previously that if the Initial Grand Hoover has taken place and failed (this hoover being caused by your escape) then you will face follow-up hoovers thereafter, of a benign and/or malign nature. Their catalyst is whether you enter our spheres of influence through something you have done (spheres one to five) or the fact you have just entered out mind for some reason (sphere six). If you have entered a sphere of influence, we always consider (though dependent on the nature of your type of narcissist the degree of consideration varies considerably) whether a hoover could be effected. There are certain hurdles which will either prevent that hoover from taking place or reduce the likelihood of it taking place. These hurdles may well raise the bar so it is less likely that the Hoover Execution Criteria are met, meaning it is less likely you will suffer a hurdle. Knowing what these factors are and how we regard them is crucial in formulating your defences to maintain No Contact.  What, then,  are those hurdles?

  1. Your Whereabouts

If we do not know where to find you so that we can appear face to face and look to garner some excellent Proximate Fuel by turning up at your home, your work or somewhere else you frequent this naturally poses a considerable problem to us. A Greater Narcissist will apply some effort to ascertaining your whereabouts, a Lesser is unlikely to do much at all. Accordingly, as part of building your defences the necessity of changing where you can be physically found not only pays dividends in commencing No Contact but affecting the likelihood of a later hoover.

  1. Your Accessibility

In a similar vein we need to be able to contact you. If we do not have a physical place to either attend, drive past, leave or note or send a gift, then we will look to access you through electronic means. If we know your telephone number, we are far more likely to hoover or if we have a means of contacting you through an app or on social media. If you have effected a media blackout and managed to sustain it, the prospects of a hoover happening are vastly reduced.

  1. Gullibility of Friends and Family

We may have a lieutenant in your ranks already. If so, the prospects of being hoovered are increased as we will have them lined-up to leak to us where we can find you and how we can contact you. Even if there is no lieutenant, if there is the prospect for a hoover we (or one of our lieutenants) will approach people in your camp to gather this information. It is often done under a separate auspice – there may be an emergency, some post has arrived we need to pass on, there is something confidential to relay to you – and if your family and friends are trusted with contact information their susceptibility to releasing this information is important. Bear in mind several months may have passed and if a lieutenant approaches your parents or a friend, they may not be alert to the danger. If those who might have your contact information remain impregnable then the hoover prospects are diminished.

  1. Happy and Contented

If you are demonstrating (to the outside world at least) that you are happy and contented, then this will affect the hoover prospects. Generally speaking we expect you to still be pining for us and miserable. This is regarded as a condition which is fertile ground for a successful hoover. If we are aware that you are moving forward, you rarely mention us, you appear generally happy and content then the Lesser and Mid-Range of our kind will be less likely to attempt a hoover. This is because they may be easily rebuffed and even though you may do so in a pleasant way, the fuel gained will be minimal. You should be aware however that a Greater will regard you as a prospect to break and therefore will not be dissuaded by seeing you happy and content alone.

  1. A New Interest

If you happen to have moved on to somebody new, which of course is dependent on the passage of time and other factors, then again a Lesser or a Mid-Range is less likely to hoover. The prospect of being rebuffed and thus wounded through criticism will prove too great a risk to them. They will feel criticised already by knowing you are with someone new when you should be holding a torch and pining for them and they are likely to regard the hoover as too risky, with the prospect for no fuel and further wounding. This will not apply to the Greater Narcissist. We are more likely to apply a malign follow-up hoover and lash out at you and your new partner to get a double fuel strike.

  1. Your Fuel Potential

You will have been an excellent source of fuel at some point, that is why you were chosen and ensnared, but that changed. The reason hoover fuel is so potent is that you will have recovered to some extent from what has happened to you, you will want to see us or be relieved that we have come back for you (not always but often) and most of all the fact that we have abused you and yet we can still entice you either to start the Formal Relationship again or even to provide fuel shows how powerful we are and thus adds to the potency of the fuel. If you are a super empath or a co-dependent you will be a prime prospect for hoovering. However, if we regard you as still badly crippled by what we did to you so that you have been in effect numbed so that your emotional output is muted or deadened, this will affect whether a hoover will take place. In such circumstances a proxy hoover may take place so a lieutenant can scope you out. Or you may (if circumstances allow) receive a paving the way message which is not a hoover in itself but rather a way of seeing how the land lies to then decide whether a hoover attempt should be made.

  1. Your Knowledge

If we are aware that you know what we are or have information which could be damaging to us in the form of amounting to a serious criticism this will lessen the likelihood of a hoover. Whilst a Lesser has no awareness of what he or she is, if you do know and you keep making mention of it and adapting your behaviour accordingly, he or she will at least sense there is little fuel to be gained and/or the risk of criticism. Similarly, a Mid-Range will realise that there is something “off” with the situation and think very carefully before being exposed to less fuel and/or criticism. The Greater is not concerned by your knowledge of what he is. He will deny it and look to manipulate the situation to his advantage to draw further fuel, but he will be concerned by anything that could cause criticism.

  1. The Façade

This carefully constructed and maintained device which we use to repeated effect against you is important. Not only do we use it against you but it will be used against other victims and those who help create the façade provide us with fuel. We do not want this to be damaged or fractured in anyway. If we ascertain that there is a risk of this happening if we hoover you (for instance you have damning evidence of our behaviour which could be circulated if we engage with you) then we will not want the façade damaged by such exposure and accordingly the prospect of a hoover happening will be diminished.

  1. Energy levels

If you enter our sphere of influence when energy levels are lower as a consequence of lower fuel provision, then the hoover may be regarded as not worth the effort. If, however there is easy accessibility and the prospective fuel gain is considered to be significant then even low energy levels would not be a dissuading factor but if there are other factors as above in place which would prove difficult then when we have low energy levels this makes us less inclined to want to perform the hoover. This situation may arise where we are still embedding a new primary source after your escape or we may not have one yet and we are reliant on fuel from primary sources. If the hoover is perceived as having hurdles and energy levels are low, even though you may have entered a sphere of influence, we may look elsewhere for fuel and not engage in a hoover.

  1. The Type of Narcissist


The particular type we are has a bearing also. The Lesser will be looking for easy gains, low-hanging fruit and immediate results. The immediacy is important. Lacking the calculation of the Mid-Range and Greater, he will be inclined to hoover if you are in near reach even if there are other hoovers because he is unable to control his thirst for hoover fuel. He will however risk being rebuffed and this will in turn ignite his fury causing him to lash out at you with potential repercussions. If the Lesser does not see an immediate opportunity he will move on. He is akin to an opportunist burglar. The Mid-Range will put a little more effort and planning in but will be cautious in his approach, mindful of the potential repercussions and therefore a few hurdles will put him off. He may apply a little effort to consideration but it does not take too much to cause him to move on. The Greater will need considerable hurdles to prevent a hoover happening when a sphere of influence has been penetrated. If he knows there is very potent hoover fuel he will apply considerable effort, like a well-planned heist, to get those jewels.

These factors need to be taken in consideration with one another to determine the likelihood or not of a hoover happening once the sphere of influence has been penetrated.

36 thoughts on “Raising the Hoover Bar

  1. Hope says:

    In a roundabout way, I’ve figured it’s safer for me (revenge-wise) from him to allow him to follow me on an old Twitter account he has that he only tweets on once or twice a year. His tweets are never to me.

    I’m more comfortable with that than when I had him totally blocked.
    It’s made me less of a challenge to him and I believe it allows me to be basically unnoticed by him. He won’t hoover me directly anyway, due to the wounding of me escaping. And, I don’t tweet anything exciting, so I doubt if he even looks at my account.

    Once or twice a year, I’ll get a message from a mutual friend mentioning him. And I always answer very positively about him – which I think throws him off guard and he’s very wary now. Thus, will not approach me directly. (He’s a victim, mid-range type.) When I read your posts & think of him, I always think of him as ‘ol “Malcom the Mid-Range”, HG. 🙂

  2. Karma says:

    I raised the hooverbar very high and keeping it that way. Funny enough he found yet another back door and trying to small talk like nothing has happened… I’ve stopped question if he is a narc because…
    1. Love bombing was out of this world
    2. Too many crazy x and red flags (I had a gut feeling but ignored)
    3. He took my money, my dignity and my energy
    4. He lied about everything
    5. Bad financial choices
    6. Disengagement… started but I took off
    7. Silent treatment
    8. Refuse to acknowledge his faults
    9. Future faking to keep me hanging
    10. Hoover’s that are just crazy
    -miss you
    -miss our sex
    -my kids love you and miss you
    -lies about (covering) a new woman after one year
    -pretend nothing has happened
    -haning on to my possessions
    11. HG told me so …

    Been dating but I do feel the new guy is not living up to the expectations… because he is boring and too normal… but damn it I will not seek for another narc because it will kill me if I ever do it again…
    And oh the sex and intimacy was the killer ….

    But no more …

    Raising the Hoover bar even higher by letting him know that I’ve moved on, refusing contact and living life well.

    He on the other hand is now in massive problem ..Him trying to get sympathy from me and using kids as a bait!!!! So nothing new and not my business anymore and that feels awesome!!!!
    No more drama!!!
    Thanks HG

    1. HG Tudor says:

      You are welcome. Number eleven should be number one by the way!

      1. Gemima says:

        HG, of course YOU think number 11 should be number 1, it has your name attached after all…. but, although I am teasing you, your help is proving invaluable.

        1. HG Tudor says:

          I am pleased that is the case.

  3. Caroline says:

    I live about 10 hours from the narc. I went NC, but he likely has no clue yet. Before I read more on this blog, I thought I was strictly a NISS to him, but now I am pretty sure he had plans all along to “promote” me.

    This narc thinks he is giving me the silent treatment right now (he has gone as long as about 3 weeks with it), and I believe he is a Mid-Ranger. He is my ex from when I was 18, and he is way dramatic… he is absolutely the type (did it when we were boyfriend/girlfriend) to drive a long ways to “win me over”/make up. He’s big on in-person gestures.

    Question: If he hoovers me (text or phone), I will be nervous that if I don’t respond that he will take it as an excuse to come see me. Is it better that I prepare a short statement of not wishing to be in contact ever again, and email him that if he hoovers — or best that I stick to totally ignoring him? I don’t want to give him any tiny bit, but I also don’t want to feel like I’m looking over my shoulder.

    Thanks for any insight. And I really appreciate the hoover info!

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Ignore him. He is unlikely to come and see you. If he does, ignore him all the more. The wounding will raise the hoover bar for a period thereafter.

      1. Caroline says:

        Thank you so much, HG. 🙂 I’m relieved that ignoring is the way to go… whenever I think of any kind of communication on my end, I feel like he’s getting what he wants. It’s partly about trusting my gut again, which I guess will take time.

  4. Katphena says:

    Hg i discarded the narc put a restraining order on him! He of course retaliated with one! Before when he would get angry he would have bitches calling making fun of my occupation as a travel nurse! Well now all is done with court I get calls like before with only hello unknown number hang ups! He basically has the new source playing his game any article on this crazy dynamic to understand! And what is this tactic called!

    1. Katphena says:

      I believe also he is a greater somatic narcissist

    2. HG Tudor says:

      It is a hoover by proxy.

    3. K says:

      I found this article below very helpful regarding hoovers, I hope it helps.


  5. Tappan Zee says:

    He may hoover.
    I fly on a broom.
    Who’s ur bitch now.
    Said a bad word. Pow.
    Tappan rappen. Laffen.

  6. Vicky says:

    HG do they ever just leave you alone? How much time has to past for a victim to be living in peace knowing he won’t come back to Hoover? I can’t move, he knows where I live, he knows where I work, he knows where to find me, I can’t change that for now… but he was the one who ended the “relationship” so I hope he is busy and happy with the replacement. Still I want to minimice to 0 the chance of a Hoover now and forever!! How is that can I do that if he has my information about the “whereabouts” ?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      There is always a risk of a hoover. You can however manage that risk to an extensive degree.

    2. J says:

      I’m with HG. Certainly do all you can to minimize entering the spheres. And don’t respond at all if you can. However, I might add one more piece of defense to put your mind at ease. I often find it helpful to construct a pre-made response to use in the event of a hoover (assuming you’re put in position where you have to respond at all). Pre-made responses I’ve found most useful fulfill two criteria: 1. They employ use of the delusional world HE constructed to protect ME. 2. They put up another obstacle to future contact. Suggested example in your case: “You were totally right to end our relationship. It was for the best. I’m sure you are so very happy in your new life and, of course, the last thing I would want is to get in the way.” And just keep using it again and again as much as you need. Think of it like a PR line from a company. “We accept full responsibility and apologize for the inconvenience.” Over and over again. Added benefit is it quells some of your temptation and anxiety if you have a ready-made escape route that keeps him further at bay.

  7. Thomas says:

    Hg how often do exes appear in your 6th sphere? Is it more of a monthly or yearly thing?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      It really does vary, there are so many. Some may be yearly, some may be weekly.

  8. Samantha says:

    hg -my midrange ex had a “Sam box” that he kept ticket stubs, programs, souvenirs and mementos in from our relationship. Is this normal for a narc? Is it like a trophy now? Do you think he kept the stuff or threw it all away when he broke up with me? We broke up 6 months ago and he hoovered me once 4 months ago but I have maintained no contact.

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Probably kept it but put it away in the attic or a cupboard.

    2. blondie says:

      I don’t know what a “Sam box” is, but when I read this, I kept hearing “Shoebox of Lies” by bare naked ladies.Kinda like when I went through his drawer of personal correspondence after he died. I would bet he kept those mementos, but they might be in storage.They like to keep souvenirs as proof of their conquests.

  9. Suzie says:

    My ex boyfriend hoovered me in repeatedly within a five year span. The last time I left I told him if he ever contacted me again I would file a restraining order. I then moved in with another lady whose brother is in law enforcement and lives next door. He didn’t hoover around there, but decided to show up at my Church. He tried to talk to me,but I just completely ignored him. He called right after that asking what to do with my mail. I said, “return it to sender, don’t contact me again”. he tried to talk to me and I hung up on him. Its been 2 months and I have never seen or heard from him again. I’m hoping that this is the end of his hoovering. He doesn’t want to get in trouble with the law. He has already had two restraining orders against him from his past and a domestic violence. Hopefully, he will leave me alone now out of fear if nothing else.

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Two months is not long. Stay vigilant.

    2. Tappan Zee says:

      Suzie. He won’t. Heed the warning. Take cover.

  10. Lisa says:

    Ya ‘bump’ into a drinking mate of the tHiNg, (GC) and before you know it, IT’s back. Just like clock work. Here we go again. Do these people not know how predictable they are? Or is it only the fact that Im educated now that shows me the predictability of him, the tHiNg. Thank you HG for helping me see this pattern. From belign to malign….it matters not now.

    1. HG Tudor says:

      You are welcome.

  11. Ava says:

    HG is it possible to ever raise the hoover bar so high that they can not hoover you ever again?

    1. HG Tudor says:


      1. Tappan Zee says:

        HG—other than death?

        1. HG Tudor says:

          Make yourself impossible to find and contact.

  12. Kim michaud says:

    Does embarrassment play any part ? Like if they told you in essence your a worthless piece of shit, they don’t give a damn about you and they can get someone a thousand times better would they have created a situation where hoovering you would be self criticizing themselves and wounding their own facade ?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      No because of compartmentalisation, the fact we are hypocrites but do not see it (or where those of us do, we do not care because our needs are paramount) and because all is as the fuel wills it to be.

      1. kimmichaud1 says:


  13. Rebecca says:

    Could you place yourself more in danger of him physically coming after you if you’ve removed yourself from social media and he has no way to get a hold of you? Would a greater still persist or would he move on to someone more accessible?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Potentially, however, most Lessers will move elsewhere owing to low energy levels. Mid Rangers prefer to use ‘dip a toe in the water’ techniques through technology. If you remove all technological ways of being contacted, there is a risk of a physical appearance so long as they know where to find you and of course you may well have placed yourself somewhere that you cannot be found. Alternatively, if the narcissist turns up at your house you do not engage with him or her, you wait for them to give up knocking/shouting/ringing the bell and if they do not, call the police and have them removed.

      1. Rebecca says:

        Thank you!!

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