Blind Or Stupid?




We love to triangulate. Three is the magic number. You, me and someone else or something else. Another victim? A competitor? A loyal lieutenant? A fresh prospect? An imaginary individual? A threatened event? An inanimate object? There are so many combinations of triangulation that are available to us and each has their own advantages and rewards for their application for us. In this equation there will always be us, there will always be you and then there will be third party. One of our effective manipulative triangulations involves the “normals”. These are people who are neither empathic or narcissistic but people who are generally decent, sensible and largely kind who may be supporters of yours, they may be members of our façade but whatever they are they are not you and they are not us. These are the people who you turn to when you can no longer stand what is happening to you. When you cannot understand what is going on. When the confusion becomes overwhelming. When you begin to sense something is not quite right. You turn to these normal in the hope of them helping you, understanding your plight and/or offering some insight. This is rarely achieved because you are met with responses which leave you wondering whether the person you have just spoken to is blind or stupid. Here are ten instances of this in action.

  1. I don’t believe it

Victim – “He is horrible to me, he never lets me do anything on my own anymore, he shouts and calls me awful names.”

Normal – “Really? I just can’t see Nigel behaving like that, he is always so lovely and friendly whenever I see him. I cannot believe he would do that.”

  1. Are You Bringing It On Yourself?

V – “I am sick of him controlling me. I try and assert myself, you know, lay down some boundaries, but he is always telling me to shut up and calm down and doing what he wants without any consideration for me.”

N – “Well you have always been feisty my dear, maybe you are provoking him and that’s why he is behaving that way. I don’t mean to be unkind but you do have a bit of temper you know.”

  1. Not This Again

V- “He has done it again. Disappeared. I have been ringing him on the hour every hour and he won’t answer. I don’t know what it is. I mean, everything seemed okay when we got up this morning, he smiled and asked me if I wanted a cup of tea (cue detailed analysis of every word and interaction thereafter)

N – Glazes over, thinks to themselves “Not this again. I am bored of hearing this. They will be talking again by tomorrow. She worries over nothing.”

  1. I Feel Sorry for Him

V – “So he did this, then that, then this again and he always does this you know. He is horrible, Horrible I tell you. I don’t know what to do. Oh he did this as well and some more of that.”

N – Thinks to themselves “I feel sorry for him putting up with someone so neurotic as her. No wonder he clears off for a few days, probably needs the peace and quiet.”

  1. Someone Is Exaggerating


V – “No word of a lie, he locked me in the bedroom and threatened to burn the house down with me inside and I heard him laughing as he said this to me. I am so scared of him. He keeps threatening to kill me. He rings me at work and comments about how my brakes are dodgy and laughs and puts the ‘phone down.”

N – Thinks to themselves “Sure he does, nobody goes on like that, I do like my friend but she is something of an attention seeker. Every other day there is one of these stories.”

  1. I Don’t Think So

V – “So he said that if I didn’t do it he would tell everybody in the church that I was sleeping with the vicar and he would post pictures of me on the internet.”

N – “Who Norman? No way, he is such a solid and respectable man. I don’t think he would ever do anything like that. No, I have known him years, he would never do anything like that.”

  1. He Did Say She Was Crazy

V – “He hides my purse so I cannot go out, he tells me what I can and cannot eat, he won’t allow me more than a minute in the shower and stands watching me while I wash. He follows me around the house and keeps staring at me, I can even feel him watching me when I manage to slip out for a while. I know he is following me.”

N- Thinks to themselves “It’s just as Neil predicted. He said she was losing her mind and coming out with all these fantastic stories. He is genuinely worried about her and I can see why now. Poor thing. Poor him too.”

  1. Ups and Downs

V – “He sometimes doesn’t speak to me for days on end. He just sits and sulks and ignores me. It is horrible. I hate it.”

N- “Oh that’s just men for you. They all do that at some point. It’s part of the ups and downs of being in a relationship, just ignore it and get on with your day, he will soon come round, you will see.”

  1. Don’t Involve Me

V- “Hi it’s me, can I come round to see you. I need to talk to someone. He is doing it again. He has spent the last two hours shouting at me and throwing plates around the kitchen. I am sick of this, I cannot cope.”

N – “I’d love to help but I er, have an appointment. Look I have to go; I will call you later” – I’m not getting drawn into their domestic dramas I have my own life to look after.

  1. I Haven’t a Clue

V- (After lengthy description of a catalogue of odd and strange behaviour) “So what do you think, what should I do? I cannot go on like this.”

N- “I don’t know what to say really, I can’t work out why he would be lovely with you one week and then awful the next, it does add up. Perhaps if you sat down together and tried to work things out.” (I haven’t a clue what is going on here.)

Not once does the “normal” turn to you and say,

“You are being abused by a disordered person.”


“You have been ensnared by a narcissist.”

Instead when you describe the behaviour to a “normal” you are met with one or more of the responses detailed above. We know this will be the case. We know it will leave you hurt, bewildered and lacking the help and insight you so desperately need. Why do people respond like this?

  1. Lack of knowledge. Fortunately for our kind few people really know what we are and what we do.
  2. We don’t walk around with a sign around our neck stating “I am an abusive narcissist”. We blend in. People think the psychopaths and sociopaths appear like some crazed axe-murderer. We do not.
  3. People although kind are not empathic like you. Therefore, there is a limit to the time and resource they will apply to assisting you. People are inward looking and care more about their own lives than yours.
  4. The façade. Our charm and magnetism has people believing us to be wonderful and decent people. That façade is hard to shatter.
  5. Your coping abilities are eroded and you are worn out. This makes you appear unhinged, hysterical and thus in keeping with the image that we have spread around that you are The Crazy One.
  6. A Quiet Life. People do not like conflict. They want people to get on and do not want to become involved in other people’s problems.
  7. Behind Closed Doors. People always take the view that there are two sides to every story. They will listen to you but they will think there is likely to be some explanation which means it is not as bad as you are making it out to be. You are provoking the abuser, you are making it up, you are being too sensitive and taking things the wrong way. The “normal” thinks life may be different behind closed doors.
  8. People want other people to get on and therefore in order to try to preserve the peace they will suggest that the behaviour is not as bad as has been suggested and pressure the victim to go home and sort things out, unaware it is not something that can be sorted out by having a chat and a cup of tea.
  9. The tales of abuse and awful treatment seem far-fetched that the “normal” cannot believe them. They have no experience of it and combined with the existence of the façade just cannot see how someone could behave in this way.

All of this results in you trying to persuade people without success which becomes all the more frustrating and distressing for you. Naturally, we know fine well how people will respond to your protestations and the lack of understanding and knowledge about our kind allows us to blend in, move freely around and continue to behave in this manner with impunity. You are left wondering if the listener is blind or stupid. They are not stupid. But they are blinded to what we really are.

Just like you were as well.

19 thoughts on “Blind Or Stupid?

  1. Survival Mode says:

    When it comes to Narcissists, I do not like the number 3. They triangulate people’s hearts.

  2. WhoCares says:

    Cheers to that BKK; the feeling that you have a safe place to heal.

    And I’m sorry to hear that you do not have close friends in real life that you feel would understand. But I certainly *get it.*

    One thing I know is that while I never once spoke out about the dyamics of the relationship with my narc *while in the relationship*, I realize that post-entanglement; I’m very, very fortunate to have some people close to me who could listen and recognize my experience.

  3. JS says:

    I have cancer and have been relying heavily on my friends during chemo/radiation. Of course my friend the MRN steps up and wants to control everything and go to all my appointments, put herself in the middle, etc. and act like she’s running the show. She pushed our mutual friend and my family right out. When I was finally devalued after chemo was over and the storytelling about how ungrateful I was began, our mutual friend did not believe what I was telling her. She couldn’t believe I had put up with so much, not to mention the outlandish things the Narc had said/done. The friend thinks she knows the Narc so well and is willing to keep spending time with the N to try to “talk out” why I’ve been shut out. I’ve gone NC with the Narc, so I’m not sure if I’ll be able to sustain a friendship with the other if she’s still sucked in. Triangulation at its finest.

    1. BurntKrispyKeen says:

      Hello JS,

      I am sorry that you are battling such serious health issues. Your fight against cancer must be difficult enough without also having to deal with a “friend” who needs to share in the attention of the medical staff providing your care. I can only imagine how the triangulation between friends adds to your grief?

      Kudos to you for keeping your distance from someone who turned away from you during this trying time. The last thing you need right now is added stress. (Narcissists can be pretty stressful!) This is your time; putting yourself first will be paramount to your healing.

      Best wishes to you, JS, as you continue to battle, escape and heal.

  4. ava101 says:

    If someone commented on a social media post of a lovely male empath saying nice things about him and then mentioned that his girlfriend was a narcissist, and this narcissistic girlfriend saw this comment – what do you think would happen? What would she do? (Lower mid range or lesser narc).

    Do you think there is a chance of the empath opening his eyes to what she is, when someone calls her out?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Possibly, not guaranteed.

      She would be wounded by the comments made about the boyfriend and with regard to her, it would either be Challenge Fuel or wounding.

      1. ava101 says:

        Ah, thank you!

        Would she start a fight with him? Or would she play the victim?
        Would she show him in some way that she has been wounded? As she could not fight the person who had made the comment, after said social media post had been deleted then. ;D

  5. Kate says:

    We can win with cold, hard and indisputable facts.

  6. BurntKrispyKeen says:

    I get a kick out of the organizational skills of the narcissist, like the way HG will sometimes number his responses or in the way that all of the narcs his normal knew started with an “N.”

    I haven’t really talked to anyone, whom I know in person, about the mistreatment from my narcissist. I am blessed to have great, lifelong friends, but I am still too ashamed to share with them what I’ve tolerated. It’s not that they wouldn’t be kind, but it’s just as the article examines… I fear being thought of as stupid.

    I’ve already thought it enough, so why risk adding more salt to my wounds?

    Unless someone has experienced the empath/narcissist dynamic (from either side) it’s something that really isn’t fully understood unless you’ve lived it.

    That’s why I appreciate Narcsite so much. Other than the occasional misguided visitor (Hello Angela Diaz) here feels like a safe place to be…. a safe place to tell your story… a place to learn and heal.

    I appreciate you giving us that, HG. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

  7. Loulou says:

    I know this is off topic , but I just watched the movie Phantom Thread. It should be mandatory homework for us readers. Narcissist/super empath/ borderline/ golden:devalue/projection/push pull, etc etc…. Great character study as all major players engage in this behavior Superb acting again and again I can’t say enough.

  8. mollyb5 says:

    The normals seem like sheep to me . I wish I functioned without questioning or wanting to know more .

    1. amom says:

      Me too

  9. /iroll says:

    I’d put the groupthink empathics and narcissistic people into the normals category. For me, the predators and the wise ones are standing out as the exceptions, more than those two basic traits.

    1. /iroll says:

      *Do not mean anything newy-agey with that. People with wisdom.

      1. Dragonfly says:

        The term groupthink best used to describe someone in the political arena, mass hysteria, etc. I personally, with all due respect, would not use groupthinkers to describe empaths methinks. Like minded perhaps, but we are generally individuals which makes us attractive to some and ostracized for the most part by the status quo collective groupthinkers. The individual is a threat to the groupthinkers.

        All empaths have similarities, just like the narcs, but one could never write book after book about us as we are uniquely different types within a type. Not my expertise . . . just my humble opinion. I’m only one month dedicated into this so please feel free to correct me HG or anyone. I’m not easily offended. I’m an empath.

        Now I see all narcs as the same. Just like the narcs see all us appliances as the same.
        Oh, different face, body, ethnicity, etc. but narcs operate by the same playbook. Predictable. Thats why I so easily identify with what HG is teaching me.
        Although empaths, like the narc ‘borrows’ characteristics from each school/cadre, we are special. We r standouts. Easy for the narc to spot us in a crowd

  10. Jennifer Cannone says:

    We are stupid to all of it at first… Then… we learn and we grow…. And if we dont grow… then we are just stupid. I learned my narc down to a science and then….well… there’s no chance of a hoover. I’m sure of it. He would be too paranoid. My greater has been found out. Thank you, Mr Tudor. Any hoover would return disaster. Knowledge is power.

    1. HG Tudor says:

      There is always a chance Jennifer, do not fall prey to complacency.

  11. WhoCares says:

    Yes. THIS. Thank-you.

Vent Your Spleen! (Please see the Rules in Formal Info)

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Previous article

The Carrier Empath