Envy and jealousy form two of the limited range of emotions that we are permitted. Of course, our reduced range of emotional responses is entirely by design so that we are furnished only with those emotions which drive us forward in our pursuit of fuel and thus we are freed from the hindering effects of many emotions which you experience such as compassion, sadness and joy. Envy and jealousy certainly provide us with the impetus and motivation to gather our precious fuel but they are emotions that you exhibit as well. Admittedly, there are those amongst your number that are so selfless and giving that an envious thought or look of jealousy never clouds your saintly features, but for many of your kind there is a bitterness that arises from this jealousy although we know you would never admit it and would prefer to blame it on us. Take for example the following exchange I had with one of my ex-girlfriends. I have not named the individual,not because I have some semblance of decency by granting her anonymity. Not at all. No, this is borne out of highlighting that this conversation could have taken place with any number of my ex-girlfriends. It is a conversation that could have taken place with many of you. She was in a period of devaluation and was providing me with plenty of negative fuel so as I worked behind the scenes to line-up my new prospect there was no urgency to bring about a discard. We had arranged to meet at a wine bar. I was fifteen minutes late.

“Oh here at last,” she remarked as I walked in to the wine bar. I pretended not to notice her at first,my eye caught by a tall and attractive lady who was stood near to me at the bar. I smiled at the tall lady and she returned it.

“I said,” declared the ex in a louder voice, “you are here at last.”

I turned to where she was sat as if noticing her for the first time.

“Ah hello, yes what a day, major deal going on and I had to take a conference call with New York,Pretoria and Frankfurt. It’s all happening I can tell you.”

“You could have rung to say you were running late, I have been sat here wondering where you were.”

“Am I late? We said 7-15.”

“No, seven o’clock.”

“I think you will find it was 7-15. I remember distinctly because I told my secretary to schedule the conference call for 4pm to last for no longer than 3 hours to give me sufficient time to get here. Big deal you see, so it needed that time allocated to it.”

“Well, I was busy too you know,” she remarked.

“Not on the scale I have been my dear,” I replied with a smile as I continued to scan the wine bar to see if there was anybody I knew and any further opportunities to gather fuel.

“Oh of course, your work is always more important than mine isn’t it?”

“No need to be like that, I am just stating a fact.”

She began to say something but I cut her off by pointing at her wine glass which was nearly empty and asking,

“Which wine is that?”

“Er, the chardonnay,” she replied.

“The Chablis here is far better, I will get that,” I remark and smile as I see her twist her face at my comment. I indicated to a waitress to come over to the table and I ordered two glasses of the Chablis.

“A far better choice,” I declare pleasantly,

“Oh it would be wouldn’t it since you chose it?” she added sourly.

I pretend I didn’t hear and thrust my hand out and revealed a watch from underneath the double cuff of my shirt.

“What do you think of this then? Impressive no?”

“Why have you bought that? I got you a watch only last month,” she announced in irritation.

“I know but, well, this is of a superior quality and the strap on the one you got me did not fit my wrist properly, not like this one,” I explained and I then continued to espouse the virtues of the chronological item as her face darkened. I of course revelled in this but I maintained the pretence that I did not notice.

“Anyway, enough of that,” she snapped.

“Something the matter? Not jealous are you? Jealous? Of a watch?”

“No I’m not jealous,” she answered far too quickly.

“Yes you are.”

“No I am not, anyway, where are we going this weekend? I thought we might go to Rockcliffe for a couple of nights, the restaurant in the orangerie is apparently really good,” she continued.

“I am not going there.”

“Why not?”

“Because I have been invited to Guisborough instead.”

“Who by?”

“What’s it got to do with you?”

“Er just a bit, I am your girlfriend or had you forgotten about that?”

“I would rather not say, you will only get jealous,” I grinned.

She looked indignant.

“Let’s just say Guisborough is better than Rockcliffe so that is where I will be going,” I added.

“Oh I see, you always have to go one better than what I suggest,” she snarled.

“Hey,I cannot help it if people who have excellent choice invite me to such a place can I?”

“You do it all the time. I get a new car, so you do the same only yours is more expensive. I gained a promotion and rather than congratulate me you tell me all about the targets you apparently smashed. I cook you a fantastic dinner but you tell me it is not as good as the one you did the previous week. I show you a picture and you tell me you have one that is similar only yours is better. Good God, I even told you about a moisturiser I was using, just chit chat and you have to explain how the one you use is superior to it. What is wrong with you? You always have to bring it back to you and go one better?”

“What’s wrong with me? What’s wrong with you?” I replied feigning a look of displeasure despite the fact I was revelling in all this fuel that was being provided.

“You are consumed by your petty jealousy. I share what I achieve, I tell you first, I let you into everything I do so you can feel reassured that you are with someone who is successful and all you can ever do is be jealous and envious. How about being pleased for me for once rather than thinking about yourself?”

“I cannot believe what I am hearing. You boast all the time, you do it with everything. You tell me repeatedly about how you are ‘kicking ass and taking names’ at work, how the higher-ups adore you, how you are looking at buying an even larger house and how you have always been the highest achiever in your family. I told you about my degree result, yours had to be a class higher, if that is even true of course as sometimes I wonder. Your university was better than mine, your post code is a more desirable area,you have more friends than me, you have visited more countries than me. Every time I try and tell you something you have to trump it and go one better,” she continued as the anger tainted her words.

I slowly stand and her eyes widen as she seems surprised by my movement.

“I’m not sitting here listening to your jealousy, I am parked on a double yellow line and I am not getting a ticket just because you are envious of me,” I hiss. I turn as I hear her shout after me.

“There you go again, it couldn’t be a single yellow line could it? Oh no.”

I smiled and walked away content in the knowledge that these continued bouts of envy provided me with such delicious fuel. So predictable. Single yellow? I liked that.

15 thoughts on “Bitter

  1. SMH says:

    Interesting. When we were on a downswing last year, I suddenly won massive recognition in an area more his specialization than mine (our fields occasionally overlap, but we made vastly different career choices). I was excited to tell him. I knew to flatter him to give him fuel, because he is a man after all 🙂 but I was also 100% sincere. I really wanted his input. I do/did admire his brain.

    Yet I sensed envy and he never asked me about it again, even when he wanted my support for his own career. Of all the things he did, that probably disturbed me the most. He simply could not step outside of himself, even for something bigger than both of us. It must have been deeply wounding to have it confirmed that life goes on outside of him, and that I do things he could have done but for his choices. We tiptoed around that issue, and shortly after, he suddenly quit his job, so I know he listened. He just wouldn’t acknowledge.

    Smugness helps to maintain NC, as does faith in your own choices and interests, as do reminders that someone who cannot forget himself long enough to even express curiousity and share his expertise in something of inherent interest to him, is petty and at base a shit human being…thank you for this reminder, HG.

    1. Jess says:

      All of this.

  2. JBS says:

    HG, my most recent N is mad about motorcycles and riding through the country. He has sent me numerous videos of him doing so with his friends. I have no interest or knowledge of this sport, so I think he genuinely likes it. He says it invigorates him. Is this possible? Is it possible for an N to truly enjoy something? I have known other N’s, an ex boyfriend and my father, who also had activities they seem to really enjoy, I’m confused about just how much of an N’s personality is genuine, if any. Thank you.

    1. HG Tudor says:

      One would need to know more about the relevant individual to ascertain which school of narcissism he belongs to in order to answer this accurately as there will be differences. This is achieved through consultation.

      1. Stéphanie says:

        HG, can narcissists change schools as they age? It would seem that my queen narc mother was a very high-functioning narcissist, what you would call a Greater, in her youth, very meticulous and precise, but in later, twlight years, seemed to have slipped, and the way she treated me matched more with the Mid-Range and sometimes even Lesser categories you describe. Can this be age, frustration at my eventual ability to ignore and not care about her machinations, or am I misunderstanding the “school”, as it were?

        1. HG Tudor says:

          There is no change in school, but there may well be an alteration in behaviour caused by a fuel crisis or other intervening factors.

  3. Agnes says:

    HG, what would you do if she decided to escape after this conversation? You go home and she is gone. With a note “It’s over, I’m done”.

    Would you just leave it like that and find a new girlfriend or deploy Initial Grand Hoover to win her back?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Read How No Contact Feels Part Three

  4. T says:

    I was so completely wittless because I would ,and on purpose, take less so he could have more, always wishing I could get nice things. I did on occasion and he didn’t like the clothes I got. To be more sexy for him, I at one point got hair extensions. We had an argument at one point because I questioned his cheating, he lit my hair on fire. Nice one.
    Fuck! I was thinking on the bus ride into town that I need to be like the man i want. Lol, so far from that. It’s going to take at least three years, I’ve predicted just to get back to center. That is if I keep working on it.

  5. Stéphanie says:

    This is exactly what I am realising. My mother was envious; “he” was envious; they are all envious of something they can see but from which they must ever be barred. They can only pretend to know the exhilaration and excitement the same way, but it will never be genuine.
    There is always the fascination, the interest, but beneath it the hollowness, the pathetic bleakness that shows that what the narcissist sees others enjoy they will never be able to experience for themselves. The heave of the horse’s body as you tirn in unison, gait perfect, to face the last chute, the exhilaration of feeling the force of the wind and harnessing it in the mainsheet – my mother’s dogs never loved her; mine flocked around me with devoted admiration; “his” eyes lit up as I talked with passion about history, music, sport, but with both of them there was an envy beneath which the seething jealousy was kept barely in check, ready to defend the ego from the self-perceived mediocrity.
    HG, does the narcissist become irritated when a victim speaks with passion about something that the narcissist cannot really experience? Do they tire of seeing someone whom they chose to fill their void exhibit something they cannot have – they were enthralled when you spoke of crossing equatorial weather patterns under sail, but by the time you gush about a famous cellist’s masterful rendition of Haydn, it is too much and they either lash out or completely disengage- is that right?
    (Thanks for all your answers)

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Not during seduction because your passion for something can be harnessed by us. However, if you speak with passion say about horse riding when in devaluation, you are giving fuel to the activity and not to the narcissist and this will wound.

      1. Melinda says:

        Wow, that’s exactly what happened to me. During devaluation I was talking too enthusiastically about a project I love, to a couple we were giving a lift to the airport. That was the first time he assaulted me. Came out of nowhere, rage, the stare, silent treatment . . . all of it. Tx for the awakening HG.

      2. Stéphanie says:

        Yes, I can certainly see this pattern when I dredge up all those memories of my mother I’ve been suppressing for so long: the devaluations and the hoovers one after the other. She was nevr physically violent, not the way people think, just viciously emotionally viollent and once in a while she would grab me or slap me with her dinner napkin – a slip, but one that people didn’t really notice because it never looked violent. I noticed for the pure vehemence of it.

        However, when I was IPSS to “him”, I was never really in devaluation, just about to be put on the shelf, I think. Maybe it was devaluation, but it certainly wasn’t active meanness, so I get confused. HG, do IPSSs get devaluation? He never destroyed me like he could have and seemed to make an effort to the end to be decent, insomuch as he was capable, which my mother never did.

        1. SMH says:

          Same here Stephanie. Mine was never mean to me (also IPSS) and he made an effort to be decent to my face, but I still felt like a piece of shit on the bottom of his shoe because of the constant shelving. It was really hard to explain to him and I guess did not matter anyway because nothing I said was going to change things.

    2. K says:

      IPSSs enjoy long golden periods (so long as there is compliance) and Devaluation is unusual. You may find this article helpful.

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