We repeatedly provoke. The act of provocation is one which is designed to cause a strong and often unwelcome emotion in the recipient. On one level, it can be said that everything we do is provocative because we are always looking to cause you to be emotional, to react in an emotional fashion to what we do and as a consequence give us the fuel that we need. Thus when we tell you that we have finally found our soul mate, we are provoking you into generating an intense feeling of being loved (or at least thinking that you are being loved) which causes you to exhibit your love towards us and thus we gain our fuel. We pay a friend a compliment in order to provoke that person into at least thanking us, thus a small dollop of positive fuel or more hopefully (and indeed more likely because this empathic secondary source is well-mannered, honest and decent) we pay them a compliment so they will pay one to us and thus more fuel is garnered. There is no unconditional giving with our kind. We only give to receive.

Thus all of the things that we say and do, the manipulations, the chicanery, the machinations and the mind games are all designed to provoke you into giving us fuel. However, in its strictest sense, we provoke you in order to generate that intense response and one which is negative in nature. We provoke you so that you will explode in anger, erupt in a stream of profane insults and vent your frustration through a slap to the face or a mug hurled towards us.

We will push and push and push. Yes, many of you have a remarkable capacity to absorb these pointy sticks which jab you. Your kind are well-versed and skilled in the turning of the cheek, the adoption of the high ground and the making of allowances. You will bury the hatchet and we will dig it up again in order to give you a dig from the sharp point. You will let bygones be bygones and we will resurrect the memory of an age-old issue in order to rankle you.

Nothing is off limits in terms of provoking you. It might be focusing on a vulnerability of yours that we know about (having acquired this information when we seduced you) so that we remind you of a frightening episode from your childhood or capitalise on your terror of spiders. It might be homing in on your sensitivity about the size of your nose, the shape of your head, the bright red of your embarrassment. If you owe us money, we shall remind you of it and comment on your poor financial position. We may flirt because we know how much you hate the notion of us being unfaithful. We may repeatedly turn up late because you are an advocate of punctuality. We may criticise your parents, your choice of film, your culinary skills, your attempts to loser weight; whatever we have identified as a means for causing you to erupt at us we will do it.

We know which buttons to press. We have a knack and an instinct for doing so. This is because we are able to gather information about you when we seduce you which will be stored away and used against you at a later stage. This is also because empathic individuals are more likely to respond in an emotional fashion. Yes, you will soak it up at first by making allowances for our behaviour and indeed making excuses, exhibiting this selfless understanding for which you are famed. This will not dissuade us. We know that everybody has a limit of what they can take before they snap. Sometimes it is bursting into tears, running from the room or screaming. Other times it is exploding with a volley of curses, coming at us with flailing arms or shouting and screaming at the top of your voice about how awful we are.

Push, prod, niggle. Aggravate, rile, irritate. Ruffle, vex, bug. Irk incense and annoy. We will chip away at your defences, jabbing and poking as we look to make your blood boil, get on your nerves, get under your skin,  work you into lather and try your patience until you can take no more. We can sense the emotion rising in you. We notice the slight tells, the narrowing of the eyes, the rolling of the eyes, the sighs, the shake of the head, the hands on the hips, the raised palm, the jutting jaw and so on. The more you try to tell us that we are not getting to you, the more we are encouraged. We know that your emotion is building up inside of you. We know that it is increasing and no matter how much you are trying to maintain that cool exterior, we understand what is building up.

We not only have a medley of ways by which we provoke you, but we are experts in choosing precisely the best (worst) time to engage in this behaviour. Do any of these instances seem familiar?

When you are trying to get ready to go out.

When you are trying to have a telephone conversation with somebody else.

When you are trying to cook.

When you are trying to perform some chore.

When you are trying to get to sleep.

When you first come through the door after a long day.

When sat next to us in the car on a long journey.

When sat across from us in a restaurant.

When at some event of your choosing.

We will pick an inopportune time to commence our provocation so that you are caught off guard, when you are tired, when you are hungry, when you are anxious or stressed. The moment must be right for us and wholly inappropriate for you and then we can unleash the relevant form of provocation. We know what really gets to you. It may be the subject matter. It might be the way of conveying it, for instance patronising you or acting in a condescending fashion. It could be jabbing you with a finger on the shoulder to punctuate or words or giving you a dig in the back as you lie on your side in bed, after each savage sentence.

Eventually comes the eruption. You can only take so much and invariably when this provocation comes allied with an emotional state which makes you more susceptible to our provocations the explosion is all the more satisfying. Copious amounts of negative fuel fountain from you as you shout, scream, bang doors, slam your hand on the work top, swear and so forth. Inside we are soaring with the power that comes from the provision of this most excellent fuel. You, the paragon of virtue, the most patient of saints has been brought to boiling point and we achieved it. You have responded to our control. Our superiority is once again affirmed, we are the puppetmasters, we are omnipotent in our actions and you have responded as we wanted. Such marvellous fuel that sprays from you and we relish every drop.

Of course as it fountains and flows from you we will not want it to stop and the provocation will continue. Not only are we ensuring that we get to bathe in your overflowing fuel, we are using this eruption as evidence of how unhinged you are. Do not be surprised if this niggling, poking provocation occurs where others will see it. You can expect the whispered and insidious provocations to be used, the acts which are open to interpretation (although we both full well know exactly what was meant by our remark, our look or our gesture) and our good friend plausible deniability will be given an airing.

“Who me officer? I did nothing. She just exploded. I get this all the time, she has an anger management problem. John here will confirm she just went mental and started hitting me.” (Cue obliging Lieutenant).

“I don’t know what gets into her dad, she just erupts. You saw what she was like at mum’s birthday party. That is what I have to live with.”

“I feel sorry for you Mrs Johnson, having a daughter with a temper like that.”

We will provoke you. We will draw the delicious fuel that you will provide to us and then we will use your eruption against you as evidence of your unhinged mind, nasty temperament and unbalanced mental state.

Provocation is a mainstay of our behaviour. It comes in many forms, it is used in many different ways and on a range of occasions but its effects are always the same.

  1. The provision of a massive dose of negative fuel from a primary source;
  2. The exertion of control over you;
  3. The reinforcement of our image of superiority, lack of accountability and omnipotence;
  4. The creation of an emotional state in you which hampers your ability to think clearly and logically;
  5. The creation of a situation where you can later be made to feel guilty for erupting in the way you have at us;
  6. The manufacturing of a scenario which is used to reinforce our façade – we were calm and bewildered by this outburst.
  7. The manufacturing of a scenario which is used to smear you to third parties.

Provocation is a very useful tool to us. It is used extensively and repeatedly. Know why it is being used. Do not try to outlast it and exert your capability for patience, tolerance and understanding. You are just goading us to try harder. Remove yourself before your threshold is reached to avoid giving us points 1-7 above.

Provocation will always be used against you.

Anyway, who do you think you are looking at?


48 thoughts on “Provocation

  1. Not So Sad says:

    Empowered at last xx

  2. Not So Sad says:

    HG Hi .

    I know this isn’t related to the thread but I tested out everything I’ve learned from your blog today with a lesser Z Lister here in the UK ..

    It took just two comments on his birthday telling him he was not only a narcissist but in the grand scheme of narcissism he’s pretty shit at that too

    And the result ? Blocked from his Twitter feed.. 🙂

    Love it . TY .

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Excellent work NSS, you are seizing the power!

      1. Not So Sad says:

        Quite honesty HG it was soo easy , too easy . He bocked my comments after I called him a Narcassist & said that it was probably because he has an IQ lesser than an omeboa .
        🙂 Ty . It was fun

  3. Pbw says:

    After our email consult this week … this article I find myself looking back and thinking of how many times he provoked and smirked and laughed at me ….
    Yet I still go back to be provoked more … all the laughing and insults along the way

  4. Wounded says:

    Oooh. Yes. The “dislike” comment on my facebook photo post hair cut, making fun of my choice of wine and establishing that HE knows so much more about it than I. I wondered at all these little barbs. Now I know.

  5. Witch says:

    It would be much appreciated if you could answer this question Greater.
    Could a narc live without a primary for quite some time and just use sex/one night stands for fuel, maybe a somatic?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      In isolation? Not without consequences. The fuel would not be enough.

      1. Witch says:

        Hhhmmmm alright read something that sounds like a lesbian somatic narcissist but no primary for a while, so maybe just highly narcissistic but not a narc

      2. Witch says:

        Ok just read ‘what am I to the narcissist?’ And you mentioned sometimes family members are the primary, that may be her mother. Mother is highly enmeshed Thanks!

        1. HG Tudor says:

          You are welcome.

  6. Catherine says:

    This was my life for years. The constant provocation, the constant drama, the constant blame shifting. He kept his calm when he could and projected his miserable existence onto me; I was the one to voice all his negativity and in a certain measure to act out his pathological behaviour while he stonily and in an ice cold manner watched me intently across the room. I brought him the relief he craved, I filled his abyssal void and he was fortunate enough to escape all accountability. That’s psychological abuse at its finest.

  7. Bubbles🍾 says:

    Dear Mr Tudor,
    I remember being provoked by my weasel friend and one time caught him actually smirking at me …. . I was absolutely taken aback!
    To me, teasing, bullying and harassing someone all fall into the same category as provoking… I don’t like any of it.
    I remain very stoic now if someone is looking for a negative reaction.
    I have a friend who’s done this to me in the past and now I’m just no fun anymore 😂
    Beware of those who do!

    A great article on the awareness of people trying to push our buttons.
    Thank you Mr Tudor, you are teaching me heaps

    1. HG Tudor says:

      You are welcome.

    2. K says:

      Give me the name and address of the Weasel and I will have the Jackal take him out.

      1. Bubbles🍾 says:

        Dearest K,
        I luuuved your comment. Can you please be my body guard 😂
        You seriously have a delicious wickedness about you, it appeals to my naughty side …… oops .. did I just say that 😈😇….. lol

        1. K says:

          ha ha ha…I would love to be your body guard. I really do have a wicked side and it would complement your naughty side, like bacon an eggs. Yummy!

      2. Bubbles🍾 says:

        Dearest K,

        You “crack” me up … lol 🍳🥓😂

  8. BurntKrispyKeen says:

    I am aware that I have been defeated. And I admit that narcissists are well-skilled at provoking, even incitement. I have shamefully already given up most of the seven. I am trying to retreat, but something inside won’t allow me to surrender.

    Even empaths have pride, or at least what’s left of it.

    1. Shesaw says:

      One day, you will proudly walk away!

      1. Lisa says:

        I did crawl away, but i did 😉

    2. BurntKrispyKeen says:

      Walk, Run, GI Joe Crawl… I’m trying, but there are days I feel like I’m scootching like a dog on carpet. So degrading.

  9. BurntKrispyKeen says:

    That’s a pair of really long fingers.

    1. Bubbles🍾 says:

      Dear BurntKrispyKeen

      “The better to poke you with, my dear ”
      replied the big bad wolf

      1. BurntKrispyKeen says:

        You know… I was thinking they kind of resembled something else, but I hated to show where my mind was. That’s a great line Bubbles.

    2. Bubbles🍾 says:

      Thank you Burnt,
      I’m seriously getting corrupted by you lot … 😂😇I kinda had the same original thought as you …. 😱 Lol
      It’s all Mr Tudors fault 😂

      1. BurntKrispyKeen says:

        You’re telling me! I couldn’t even comment on the Hush post. I tried, but I knew I best not.
        Besides, I had to stop myself in the middle of reading it. So I switched to the audio version.
        (And that might have been a mistake.)

        I’ve never seen a bona-fide porno. Now don’t get me wrong… I’ve seen some pretty raw stuff on HBO and at the theater but never a real pornographic film. You know, not yet. But after listening to HG read his own words of Hush, I kinda feel like I can now say I’ve HEARD porn.

        So after thinking the tips of those fingers had a funny, familiar shape to them… you can see how I couldn’t find the courage to comment on the Hush audio.

        I’m so glad you understand Bubbles. This site has gotten me into more cold showers.
        It’s ridiculous.

        Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to reapply my headphones.

        1. HG Tudor says:

          Are you a nun?

      2. BurntKrispyKeen says:

        Ha! No. I already have too many habits. But porn hasn’t been of them. As much as I love movies, that genre was never my thing. But as I keep saying, HG, people can change.

        I have considered joining the convent. K and I were just discussing that, as a matter of fact. But after listening to your audio, I’m pretty sure I won’t be making the commitment. Why set myself up for failure?

        Steamy stuff… but I have a feeling you could make reading the ingredients of Liquid Drano sound sensual.

        1. K says:

          To hell with the nunnery, better to be a hermit in a yurt, BKK! And you have the option to watch porn in the privacy of your yurt.

          1. Narc Angel says:

            K and BKK

            Yes. There you’ll be watching porn while wearing a Nuns habit with your vibrator set to Stun and playing Yurts So Good on a loop. You will only be able to climax though when Hurt God whispers HUSH followed by a thunderous: SEIZE THE POWER!!!

          2. K says:

            OMG! I am still laughing about your comment re: nan on Acons No-22….and then I read this one! LMFAO!!! Yurts So Good on a loop…ha ha ha! You bet your ass I will seize the power!

      3. BurntKrispyKeen says:

        Hehe! I might install a yurt in the backyard just for that purpose. Thanks for the idea, K.

        I think I’m struggling so much with my so-called dirty streak because I’m in the midst of my dry-spell-healing. And dammit… I would have to be a slow healer.

        So I’m afraid a private viewing in a cozy little yurt might just send me over the edge. Once I’ve been christened, HG would probably have to add a rating system to the rules… although I think I could keep my comments at PG-13.

        Well, it would depend on the pictures. So maybe I better save my first full-fledged porno flick for after my recovery.

        HG, I surely don’t want you to have to add another amendment to Rule # 13 due to my misbehavior. So no more comments about long, skinny fingers or long, skinny gas masks. Nope. Not from me. I’m gonna present myself in the manner of the nun you think I could be.

        I’m the meantime…. I have my earbuds with me today if there’s anything else you’d like to teach us. 😊

      4. BurntKrispyKeen says:

        Not… I’m the meantime… In*
        See. I’m even afraid to use that word!

      5. BurntKrispyKeen says:

        Narc Angel, I’m still laughing out loud at that one. Those laughs always come at a good time for me.
        Thank you ladies!

  10. Lisa says:

    Good evening H G,
    I have learned more from you than in the last 15 years.
    I am very very gratefull.
    But you won’t spare the rod to teach us enpaths, do you?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Excellent. No, I do not, the brutal truth is what is required to set you free.

      1. Shawn says:

        Thank you HG. Much appreciated. Like so many others who have tried to understand this type of unwarranted behavior. You, thus far have helped so many (myself included) to understand, recognize the behavior and run as fast as possible from that individual.

        1. HG Tudor says:

          You are welcome.

  11. Freddy says:

    HG, do you think there could exist an alternative source of fuel that does not damage others & has the benefit of being easier to acquire? When I feel insecure, engrossing myself in some types of work (or hobbies or studies) puts me into a zone & calms me right down. As an observer, the reliance on human fuel seems utterly exhausting! Think of all the things you could achieve if you didn’t have to worry about fuel!

    1. HG Tudor says:

      I do not worry about it, but I understand the point you are making. Your method works for you, fuel works for us, if there was a different way then we would’ve adapted to utilise that alternative. The fact we have not done so suggests there is no alternative or it is not as effective as fuel.

      1. Freddy says:

        Sorry, worry was the wrong word. Thankyou for answering.

    2. Brian says:

      Freddy, i have said similar things in the past.
      I think playing with toy trains (for example) gives someone a feeling of control, but narcissists are ‘people focused’.
      It’s a shame.

      1. Freddy says:

        It is probably very simplistic of me to equate narcissistic behaviour to ”normal’ behaviour, but too many times as I read through the blog, l think the behaviours described could be my own or other normals. For example, the giving of compliments to make yourself feel better. Even the behaviour of empaths- they initially fall for someone who has placed them on a pedestal – how narcissistic is that! Hence why i think what works for me when i feel unsettled (well…irrational) may also work for them. Also i wonder if they are all incapable of empathy or just those with psychopathic traits. I remember reading the results of a research study which concluded that narcissists were capable of showing empathy in some situations, I’ve forgotten the details. Anyway, I live in hope, there are too many casualties not to! HG you should be proud of the work that you’ve done here, you really do have unique insight, which answers questions other sources have not. I also hope your pride transforms into fuel so that you need less of the human kind 🙂

        1. HG Tudor says:

          Thank you.

          Everybody has narcissistic traits (some very few and not strong, some one or two which are very strong – all alongside empathic traits) and therefore some behaviours of ours (though never all) will resonate with other people. Further, there may be similar behaviours from time to time but the basis of those behaviours will differ between you and our kind, but yes, you will see some similarities from time to time.

  12. H. says:

    Before I knew better, I called it drama. I recognized the pattern, he would intentionally cause a huge fight, all the time. It was exhausting. Of course it never ended.

  13. On my Journey says:

    Funny reminds of my last outburst. When asked why I was crying that much and throwing money at me trying to make up for my pain, I told him there were 4 buckets in which my life was a disaster, financial, career, social and us. I went at length in writing details of each categories and then read it to him and he was saying… oh… All this is not going well in your life and I am one of these, I could feel he was offended I did not over emphasized that our problems were superiors to the other problems. He insisted on keeping my notes. But he knew , he had pushed me by texting and texting other woman in front of me while we were having lunch. He even said he had sympathy for me, understanding all my problems etc. Ended up saying that we were both lonely people but I was a good person and he was a bad person.

    1. Brian says:

      He insisted on keeping the notes so he would know what buttons to press in the future, of course.
      All of those declarations of sympathy were just taken from a movie he saw, or from someone else. To keep you in the relationship.

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