A Preventative Hoover


How many times have you declared that you have had enough? How many times have you vowed that you are no longer putting up with this behaviour and making a fresh start? How often have you put in place steps to depart and leave this confusing and twisted reality behind? We hear these assertive comments from time to time. We have subjected you to a sustained devaluation, provoked so many heightened emotional responses from you which has given us fuel. At times you did not know whether you were coming or going, your head swam and that dull ache in the centre of your forehead never seemed to diminish. You wondered who you could trust as you fought to establish what you believed was right against a backdrop of contradictions. From somewhere you mustered some strength, a bolt of fortitude sprang from the maelstrom and in that moment of clarity you knew it was time to go. This situation is not right surely? Nobody should be treated in this manner. Yes, it was the moment to depart.

Of course you could not do so without your parting speech. It was not borne out of spite or venom. Those are not watchwords that apply to you. Notwithstanding the horrendous treatment meted out against you, the repeated abuse and the incessant put downs, you still behaved with dignity and grace. There was little doubt that you wanted to lash out. You wanted to flail us with stinging words and some home truths, just in the same way we had used our acidic tongues and savage words to berate you, yet despite how much you wanted to speak to us in this manner you did not do so. Instead, demonstrating the empathy which attracted us to you all that time ago you explained how you still loved us. You fought back the tears as you explained that you loved us more than you did when we first became a couple and despite everything that has happened you still love us. You ought to have torn strips of us, levelling a lengthy charge sheet against us but you did not behave in this way. That is not who you are. You talked about all the wonderful traits we have and how you miss them, you continued to praise us even after everything that we had done to you. You stood there bearing the emotional and physical bruises and rather than lambast us for putting you in such a state you preferred to talk about the magical times we had together. You clearly had committed each of those occasions to your memory as you brought up each event and occurrence as the tears trickled down your cheeks. You explained how wonderful we made you feel, how you had never experienced anything like that before and you consequently truly believed you had found the one. You work through the golden period, talking about the trips we took, the days we spent together and the glittering and scintillating moments we created. We can see this is hurting you all the more yet still your selflessness continues. You are exhausted after the tortuous time you have been put through and yet still you only try to remember the good and thank us for those wonderful times. You tell us that although they lasted a few months, the memories of that time are seared into your mind and you will always treasure them. You explain that you will reflect on those memories and not what came to pass afterwards as you still prefer to think the best of us, despite everything we have subjected you to. Your nobility in behaving in this manner is most impressive and your admirable words continue to fuel us. You explain between sobs that you do not want to go but you have to. You do not want to leave everything that we have built up behind but if you do not do so then you will be destroyed. You apologise, yes you actually apologise that you have not been able to help us, to steer us away from the destructive and malevolent behaviour that has marred the latter months together. You explain how hard you have tried but admit you have been defeated. You express your desire for us to change and to seek help because you truly believe that we are a good person who just needs to seize on that goodness and allow it to shine. You tell us you have seen what we can do and achieve and you still want what is best for us. You stand there staring at us; some of your possessions already packed in the two suitcases which are waiting in the hallway. You tell us you will make arrangements with us to collect the remainder of your belongings once you have had a chance to think and breathe.

We rise from our seat and walk towards you. You are quietly sobbing and we take your hands in our hands and hold them in that tender manner you recall so well. The vicious squeezing that one day arrived out of nowhere is not in existence. Instead, we hold your hands and look you straight in the eye as we summon up a look we have practised before with others in the situation. The look begins as sorrow and then morphs into hope as we search your eyes looking for that flicker of flame once again through the tears. You hold our gaze as we keep searching and then we speak, our words soft and gentle, just as they were when we whispered into your ear as we lay next to you holding you late at night.

“I am sorry, I know this time I have to change. Please help me be the good person I know I can be, that I want to be. Something is wrong with me and I do not know what it is, but you can save me, you are the only one. Please do not leave me. I cannot survive without you. I need you. I want to make you happy again because someone as wonderful and as loving as you deserves it. I will get help but I know I can only do it with you at my side. Please, please stay.”

The short speech is delivered with true brilliance as I gather the right inflection in tone coupled with suitable contrite looks and mannerisms. I continue to look into your eyes as you let my words sink in. The moments pass and then the light flickers, that flame of hope sparks into life and I know your next words before you have even spoken them and I begin to give you that enticing and winning smile again.

I know that you will stay. Again.

You end up stuck. Again.

This is a form of Preventative Hoover and when you roll out that supposed parting speech, you are leaving yourself exposed to such a hoover.

They often work as they target your empathic traits of guilt, sympathy, not wanting to give up, hoping for the best and wanting us to heal.

Tip us off as to your intentions and you will face such a hoover.

18 thoughts on “A Preventative Hoover

  1. kthrynbanks says:

    Thank you so much for this blog and for all those who contribute. I’m apparently with my 1st narcissist and at 4 months I am currently being devalued. I decided to try NO CONTACT and made it for a little over 24 hours. (He lives in an apartment across hall from me.) I wasn’t even attracted to him but all of the things he said…somehow he got me there. It was when I told him I couldn’t be with person living in my building and if things went South it would be uncomfortable at best. He responded, “I hate to see you walk away from what could very well be the best thing in your life.” That got me thinking and the rest is crazy. So I went over there tonight with some brandy he likes. He had opened the door again this a.m. calling asking do I want coffee. (I ended up making a pot and bringing to him.) So tonight I brought up his treatment of me and he responded “you see why – all you bring is negativity.” I am trying again to do NO CONTACT. Help me please!!!! I haven’t lost myself totally yet and I know I need to repel from his poison. One day at a time I will stop myself from going further down this road of hell!!!!!!!

    1. HG Tudor says:

      You are welcome.

    2. K says:

      This sentence is an excellent example of blame shifting.

      So tonight I brought up his treatment of me and he responded “you see why – all you bring is negativity.” (it’s all your fault, not his)

      You need to replace your emotional thinking with logic. Start with these articles:


      Keep reading and don’t stop. Put: No Contact Mistakes in the search bar located at the top on the right (underneath Knowing the Narc) and read them all (5 in total), then do the same with the Golden Rules of Freedom (5 in total).

      If you are desperate, you can arrange a consult with HG, I recommend the Skype.

      You are an object (appliance) and you don’t matter to him, except for fuel, character traits and residual benefits (Prime Aims)


      Please, keep posting and let us know how you are doing with your NC.

      He is going to keep hoovering you because you live across the hall from him.

  2. Heather says:

    I’m new to this whole I’m married to a Narcissist… and I was wondering what a Hoover is… here is my husband’s Hoover on me just yesterday:

    I almost took my life, it’s a miracle I didn’t and it was close but I don’t want to die. I don’t want to live without you. I want to raise the kids to be amazing. I want to treat you so good you desire me and seek me out. I want to be so good that you want to brag about me and that my needs get met without evening asking because you are so happy.

    I understand this may take time and I’m willing to take baby steps.  I know that I may stumble or ask for something you aren’t ready to give.  I’m not perfect.  I can promise that I will try hard and keep my cool at all times.  I’ll keep a journal with my issues if I have to do that we may discuss with a professional later.  All I want is to earn your trust and love.  I learned that I can have empathy and apologize without having to necessarily agree.  It’s a learning process.  I’m very sorry for hurting you.  I’m sorry for walking out on you.  I’m sorry for my hateful and hurtful words towards you and the kids.  I’ll give you time now but please know I miss you so much.  This is what broke me, this made me cry and just look at pics of you for hours.  

    Then the next day, he cuts me off again. Like I’m nothing and wants nothing to do with me…

    1. HG Tudor says:

      This might be a hoover however since you state you are married I assume you are not separated and you are living together. If so, this is unlikely to be a hoover but rather is a Pity Play designed to draw fuel from you and keep you bound to him.

  3. Leolita says:

    I walked past my ex narc today on the street, we both walked our dogs. He did not try to talk to me and he seemed annoyed, or in a rush to get away from me, or so I think- and he has not contacted me after that. (I have told him I know he is a narc last we spoke, it is almost 3 months since last communication. I have also reported him to the police, I know he was in for questioning regarding this last week). So why did he not try to hoover me?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      You appeared in his sphere of influence by being spotted by him, this caused a Hoover Trigger. The Hoover Execution Criteria was not met, so he did not hoover you. It will not have been met because

      1. He may well be in a golden period with somebody else and therefore he has ‘deleted’ you resulting in no desire to engage with you;
      2. Seeing you removes the ‘deletion’ temporarily but does not remove the lack of desire to engage;
      3. You will be painted black because of the last engagement thus IF he hoovers you it will be malign BUT this may also manifest as ignoring you;
      4. You sought to expose him by telling him you knew he was a narcissist which has made him wary of you;
      5. The involvement with the police wounded him, again making him wary of engaging you.

      Accordingly, at the moment of the Hoover Trigger various factors raised the Hoover Bar (there may be others also) and thus the criteria were not met, so he did not hoover you and instead rushed to get away from you.

      1. Leolita says:

        Thank you so much for your very informative explanation, and also for replying! His look was actually both wary and hateful. I have also reason to believe he has a new IPPS. Is he afraid I might wound him by exposing him further to other people, or his IPPS? Is that a concern of a Lesser or a (L) mid range? (I need to book a consultation with you regarding which school he belongs to).
        Is is fair to assume (or hope 🙂 ) that he will leave me alone also if I would run into him in a club or bar? we live in a very small Island, so that might happen.

  4. analise13 says:

    HG, I received two recent friend requests on fb.
    I do not know either person, a man and a woman.
    Nor do we have common friends.
    My fb is only open to friends and family.

    This is not a red flag in itself.
    When I checked out their fb pages, the woman’s is open to the public. The mans is closed and it appears to be a fake account.
    The red flag is that the man is also on the woman’s friend list.

    What do you make of this?
    Coincidence or otherwise?
    Should I block both of them or just ignore it?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Ignore and block.

      1. analise13 says:

        Yes. Have done so. Thank you HG.

        1. HG Tudor says:

          You are welcome.

  5. Kat says:

    This one was brilliant… this kind of unbiased insight is no doubt saving lives.

    I feel some type of way saying this because of the obvious but, for real, this blog should win some sort of award.

    Like many, I’ve done a ton of research to understand the dynamics and mechanisms that make up the twisted reality I’m in, and this is by far the most impactful and eye opening resource out there.

    To be honest I’m tired of groups of people converting empathy into saints and martyrs while minimizing the experience and at times even humanness of those with activated dark-triad personality types. Not saying they aren’t the sharks of our species but, it’s mostly whiny, and doesn’t help us to see what’s really happening and how we as empaths contribute to the dysfunction.

    My experience with the Greater I became entangled with a little of a year ago was so out of the ordinary that I immersed myself in research so I could make sense of what the hell was going on.., I have yet to find a resource that shares a similar experience but at the end of the day the fundamental roles and experiences were and still are 100% the same. This is the first place I’ve found info that helps me understand why my experience was so out of the norm and archetypal simultaneously.

    99% of research and studies are from the perspective of professionals or targets/victims/survivors… makes sense… the very nature of a narc/sociopath/psychopath makes it nearly impossible to get this type of honest, observatory, exposé. It’s mindboggling but it’s pure genius and a game changer.

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Thank you Kat, I will take that award thank you!

  6. Diva says:

    “Your nobility in behaving in this manner is most impressive and your admirable words continue to fuel us.”……I am sadly lacking in the nobility department…..Diva

  7. Suzie says:

    I was convinced that my ex narc could have driven most to anything, including murder. He turned women into criminals, made them lose their jobs,lose their housing, turned children and family against them, turned them to drugs, made people threaten to kick his a__., got people so angry that everyone was fighting, caused one to commit suicide, turned one into a pole dancer, caused one to leave the state, caused one to drag him through the court system and try to take everything he owed, caused people to steal his money, vandalize his house, commit robbery and to pull a loaded gun on him and threaten to kill him. Talk about a track record!! I wouldn’t hold anyone to anything they exacted upon him out of revenge. He really knew how to enrage people. He was an expert at it. He may have won a fight or two,but he lost the war!

  8. Smills (@Smills11323593) says:

    Omg. I did EXACTLY this. Left explaining why but still recognizing with love the tremendous traits (I thought) he had and thanking him for the positive things that did come out of this (yes, there were positive results in some personal areas for me). He waited two days to reply because he “didn’t want to respond in anger”, and then proceeded to tell me it pissed him off, and basically gave a run down of “who do you think you are” type items! I thought to myself, “gee, would hate to see what your angry response would have been”. There was no “please stay Hoover” here to try and get me to keep on with him. Instead got berated for thinking I’m perfect and that he was “sick and tired of (me) throwing (him) away like a piece of trash!” This is why I asked the other day why positive things are ignored and only negative items are focused on by them. This guy was completely unable to regard anything positive. That always left me perplexed. I now know the aim is contrast, but frankly Im still not sure I get it.

    1. K says:

      During devaluation with both my ULN and MMRN, I was used for negative fuel only and they got their positive fuel from other sources. That could be the contrast, I think. Their only focus is fuel and how to get it as efficiently as possible. It can be very confusing, keep reading and eventually it all starts to make sense. My ULN and MMRN never saw the positive, ever. The abuse was relentless.

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