Crossing The Emotional Sea – Part Two




The first battle that takes places post disengagement or escape is the battle of the Emotional Sea. That is a battle that you are always destined to lose. You will always fight at least one Emotional Sea Battle because you do not know any other way. In all likelihood, you will face several of these battles because you will keep being hoovered back into our grasp until such time as you learn to recognise what you are dealing with and understand what you must do. Eventually and this may take several Emotional Sea Battles before you realise this and are capable of achieving the appropriate response, you either evade the Emotional Sea Battle by escaping as opposed to being discarded, or you prepare yourself for the eventual discard in a manner which means you no longer have to ensure the Emotional Battle. Instead, you move on to the next post disengagement or post escape  battle, that of Head versus Heart (“the HvH Battle”).

The HvH Battle (also known as the Logic v Emotion Battle) is a battleground where you stand some chance of victory. This battleground is one where you have gained understanding. It might be through your repeated exposure to our kind so that eventually something has “clicked” into place or more often than not it is as a consequence of an external agent who has explained matters to you. It might by a therapist, a friend, the content of a book, something you saw on YouTube or even something that I have written. Whatever has caused this understanding to increase, it is this which provides you with the fighting chance to win this HvH Battle.

You have been discarded and run the gamut of emotional fall-out thereafter. You may understand what we are. You may understand some of the things that we have done. You may be familiar with the fact that we will try to hoover you back into our grip. You may even be starting to comprehend that what has happened was all predicated on an illusion. The degree of understanding will vary but what is important for you is that you are allowing logical thought to be heard above the raw heat of your emotions. You once again will not just be battling against us but also yourself. We will be looking to hoover you in order to draw you back into our grip or perhaps we will be unleashing a malign hoover since we are unable to draw you back into our false reality and therefore we opt to keep extracting negative fuel by way of punishment for your treachery. You have us as an opponent, but you will also be fighting yourself as your emerging logic grapples with the still churning emotion. You have learned many things and you know you should apply what you have learned but still there is the emotional pull that you experience. You are not removed or detached from your emotions, they have not dimmed either, they are still there, raging away. The hurt, the love, the longing, the passion, the fear and the upset. An ocean of emotion which you once tried to cross but that was the Emotional Battle and you had barely taken four strokes as you began to swim before you were engulfed by the emotion and sank to the bottom of this sea, drowned by your own emotion. Now you have built a vessel. It is made from cool, hard logic. Critical thinking, once a stranger to you during your savage devaluation, has re-appeared. You can analyse and assess. It is unlikely you are able to do so at the level you once enjoyed before we came along but it is there. Whether this vessel is a tiny raft, a dinghy, a boat or a hulking great liner depends very much on the extent of your understanding. The choppy emotional seas will smash against your vessel of logic. A wave of sorrow will buffet you, a tsunami of longing will threaten to swamp you once again. Wave after wave of emotion will try and capsize your vessel as you try to navigate this emotional ocean. Chances are your life raft will be smashed to match wood and you will be tipped into the sea to drown once again as emotion subsumes you and you find yourself back in our hold. Your clipper may be holed beneath the waterline and you start to take on board more and more emotion as steadily you sink beneath the emotional waves once again. It is during this HvH Battle as you try to cross the emotional ocean, because what you must do is reach the dry land beyond and in effect put an ocean but you and us, you will be subjected to the push and pull of your emotions trying to guide you, to control your decision-making, your head will tell you one thing as your heart screams something else at you. This is probably the harder battle for you to fight. In the Emotional Battle, you do not stand a chance and your defeat is swift and total. During the HvH Battle you will make gains, suffer losses, seem to making a breakthrough and then out of nowhere a tidal wave will flip you from your boat and into the churning ocean and you drown once again. All the while we will be whipping up the waves, firing our torpedoes at you as we endeavour to cause you to sink into this emotional ocean yet again and you fail to cross it and win this battle. How might this HvH Battle manifest in the real world?

  1. You will know you ought not to contact us but you need to send a message to see if we respond.
  2. You will keep checking our social media profiles to ascertain if you are mentioned, if we are with somebody else and/or to find out what we are doing.
  3. You will ask about us to our coterie and lieutenants, often unwittingly doing so, so this is fed back to us.
  4. You will go on dates but find you are always comparing this new person to us and they are always found to be wanting.
  5. You know what the outcome will be but you just want one more night with us.
  6. You realise that we are unlikely to change but if you do not try you will never know, so it is worth one more attempt to talk isn’t it?
  7. You understand much of what we did and said was a lie, but surely it could not all have been an illusion? There must have been times where we really did love you and you need to ask us about this.
  8. You know we are bad for you, but you cannot help what you feel. Surely it would be better to stop this pain from being there all the time and just have it occasionally?
  9. You know you should not reply to our messages but it feels so good to have a conversation with us again. It has been too long.
  10. You know we are using you, but it feels so damn good.
  11. One kiss cannot hurt can it?
  12. You know better now, so going back will be different because you know what to expect. Armed with this new knowledge you can enter the lion’s den again but be better prepared.
  13. You know we are bad for you but you cannot bear the thought of someone else being with us and perhaps being the one to work.
  14. What if this time the apology is sincere and the desire to change is real? If you walked away from that, you would only be denying yourself happiness wouldn’t you?
  15. You understand engaging with us is dangerous but there are things you really need to tell us.

These and others besides are all examples of the inherent tension that arises in this tug-of-war between your cool intellect and your burning emotions.

Can you win this battle that rages post disengagement or post escape? Unlike the first battle, the Emotional SeaBattle which you can never win, you can be victorious. You may have to fight this HvH Battle many times before securing the win. In the beginning you may be clinging to little more than a log as you desperately try to sail the emotional ocean and you are swept from it. However, by reading and understanding, by disciplining yourself to apply logic, to prevent your emotions from engulfing you, by reading more and increasing your knowledge you will begin to increase your logic vessel. From log to raft to dinghy. Still you may be swamped and drowned again. But then it becomes a small boat, a yacht, a clipper, a steamer, a passenger liner, a frigate, a destroyer and a super tanker. Each time you rebuild, better, bigger and stronger as you learn more, making the vessel more seaworthy. You begin to chart routes so you avoid the most tumultuous emotional areas, finally beginning to steer through calmer waters until there it is, on the horizon, the sight of land and the final battle that occurs with our kind post discard.

The HvH Battle is not an easy battle. You will fight it several times, but each time you should be better prepared to cross the emotional ocean and improve your prospects of success. Sometimes you are taken unawares by some of our provocative tactics and dumped unceremoniously into the water once again, but it is a battle you can win through the dedicated application of knowledge and understanding.

44 thoughts on “Crossing The Emotional Sea – Part Two

  1. Jane hall says:

    whocares well done xx

  2. Iko Flugel says:

    The key is that the Narcissist knows that we (the Empaths) have emotions, but we do not realize that the Narcissist don’t feel the same emotions at all. It’s a kind of adverse selection – situation where one party of a deal has more accurate and different information than the other party. So, of course the first battle is always won by the Narcissist. It’s a cliché that the Empath usually is unaware that he/she takes part in a war (game) and has to “win” something.
    It’s not the case in the second battle – I call it “the intellectual fight” – there we have our chances as HG states. Only if we apply the right knowledge in the right time/place.
    Me, personally, I made an internet site, mimicking the site my Narc manages. I exposed his machinations in many fields – finance, science, personal interactions…. you name it. I put all information about his friends he confessed me. As a real Narc he talks/gossips behind the back of all of his lieutenants and coterie. I uploaded many private documents he had sent me in order to back up my claims. I sent a link to everyone of his coterie.
    It had a colossal effect! He begged me as a child to put the site down. I know for sure I caused him a huge narcissistic injury and hope he will never think to hoover me again….
    So according to my planning there will be no third battle. Am I right?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      No, you are wrong!

      1. Iko Flugel says:

        So, he will make an attempt to hoover despite the injury?… You said it’s never ending game until one of us dies? I’m so ill prepared for the next battle! I even have no idea what it will be about! Anyway, I’m not sorry. It was nice to rattle our chains, especially when I was not in the receiving end of the punishment bat (first time in my life).
        He likes to say: “Qui aime bien, châtie bien.” Who loves very much, punishes very much.

        1. tigerchelle78 says:

          Iko Flugel
          Your welcome. I am fairly new here myself so do not know everything. You might want to think about a consultation with HG, especially if you feel you are ill prepared. HG will help you win for sure!

      2. Dragonfly2 says:

        HG so true. Today I found out my ex Narc has been using my credit card. I think he’s low on fuel. ?????

      3. Clarece says:

        I sense a very malign hoover at some future point when the dust has settled under the guise of extending an olive branch.

    2. Iko Flugel
      Prepare for war! You would have most likely succeeded in wounding your narcissist.
      Depending on the type of narc he is, he will heal his wounds and then come back at you, in some way.
      Checked your car recently? Your house? Anyone stalking you? If you play with fire, you WILL get burnt! Your life may well be in danger. Your emotional thinking has caused you to want to get him back and cause ruin for him because you are hurt and angry. But you need to read HG’s books (I can’t remember which ones) and you need to get out from your entanglement with him. Right now you are in the emotional sea, thinking you are fine with your little boat. But you need to get to land! Please correct me if I am wrong HG.

      1. Iko Flugel says:

        Thanks, tigerchelle78! It’s a war, yes. I got the idea a little bit late, though. I have read some of the books – in brief – empaths have no chance to win because they always tend to use emotional thinking. Plus the anger of the narcissists can be quite dangerous. But this particular guy was extremely cruel in the devaluation and discard phases. And I just cannot let anyone to treat me this way and leave un-scattered. I know that the best way is going no contact but after a short thinking I took the decision to fight back. Hopping that he will save his energy and efforts and prefer not to deal with me again.

    3. K says:

      Iko Flugel
      He will most likely hoover again. When you have a chance read this article.

      1. Iko Flugel says:

        Thanks! will do. Why is so?

        1. K says:

          You are welcome, Iko Flugel
          The main reason he will hoover you is for hoover fuel and there is always the possibility of drawing you back into the narcissistic cycle/formal relationship.

          When you have a chance read these articles:

          There is a search bar on the right, underneath “Knowing The Narcissist”
          Search: revenge, Golden rules of Freedom No-1 and malign hoover.

    4. Grace says:

      If you don’t mind me saying this, I used to think a lot about settling the score and exposing him in my previous battles, but I have reached the other side and have some thoughts…I think by going through such a large effort to create the site and wound him, you gave him fuel. I liken it to the saying “Don’t negotiate with terrorists.” He will think he still gets under your skin by you going to such great lengths to expose him. At the end of the day, he will expose himself eventually to all he comes in contact with. It’s not your job to expose him. If you are spiritual, you can think of it as “God’s job.” Hand it over to God and stay silent. Turn your energy inward on becoming the best version of yourself. That is the best “revenge” ever – to be happy! Because he will never be happy in the way you are. Good luck. It has taken me about 5 rounds to reach this point and I hope I can stay strong. Journaling and marking off days of NC has really helped me. I am on my longest streak of 3 weeks right now.

      1. Iko Flugel says:

        Grace, thank you! Of course going no contact and just be happy is THE BEST strategy, totally agree. I’m aware I gave him a fuel by sacrificing my time and efforts creating a site and uploading documents and stuff about him and his colleagues. But I enjoyed witnessing him loosing his control/power over me and 100% submerged to his paranoia of loosing his reputation. He was stupid enough to tell me secret information about his friends – so I used it to expose him, writing “Such-and-such told me that X cheats on his wife, that Y hides some income from IRS…etc”. In the end THE TRUTH turned out to be a nuclear bomb dropped in front of his façade, shaking his narcissistic world of lies, gossips, machinations and deceptions.

        If you permit, I’ll use this analogy (probably HG would not like it):
        The narcissist wounded severely my inner child. As a good parent, I went to the kinder garden and punished the bully with my own hands.
        I don’t believe the principal would do this better than me. I am the parent, it is my job.
        I believe God is already too busy and we shouldn’t hand Him to deal with our problems if we could do something to fix them.
        The narcissist in my life gave me back my black wings, my predator’s claws and my sharp teeth. I was convinced I’ve lost them long ago.

        Something you might like: “Only the flies are caught in the spider’s web, never the wasps.”

      2. Omj says:

        I will pin this comment ! Full of wisdom and experience. I never also wan es to expose her m but more out of fear – your approach is out of love – love for self which is far more constructive.
        I like the saying that he will expose himself anyway.
        Thank you for this Grace .

      3. Jane hall says:

        Yes – I just leave it to God.

        I have a pretty big boat now. Taken me long enough.
        Hey it might even be a friggin tanker!!! LOL
        Been NC for 6 months.

        He tried to hoover me via phone – changed phones
        He tried to contact me via daughter =- daughter doesn’t miss him and told me he has never been a dad to her.
        I am going to blast him out of the water if he comes anywhere near me!
        Its taken me long enough to get this far!
        Onward and upward Empaths.
        I told myself when X went – “Even if you cry and cry you are not going back, you are going to ignore your stupid feelings and you are going to apply Cool hard logic”
        I am going to read the next article now – cos that is where I am headed and my x can take his sad eyes to Hell. (figuratively speaking) Not that I have seen his eyes in 6 months. I hope I never see them again.

      4. Caroline says:

        Well done Grace! Such dignity, composure and courage. We’re proud of you.

  3. E&L says:

    ” It might by a therapist, a friend, the content of a book, something you saw on YouTube or even something that I have written.” HG, it is your
    narrative that has enlightened me. It takes the wisdom of the Greater to fend off the mediocrity of the Mid Ranger’s shenanigans. I am not a religious woman but, ‘Oh, How Great Thou Art!’

  4. Supernova DE says:

    I feel like I should read this article each and every morning to remind myself that all my thoughts and emotions are to be expected and normal at this stage – thanks for this one HG!

    Most recent interaction with narc (he texted me through different social media app that was not on my radar):
    Narc: Hi. Sorry. What did you want to talk about?
    Me: Wow. Dunno. I’ve come to accept we will not be on speaking terms. If that is what you want then there is nothing at all we need to talk about. So the figurative ball is in your imaginary court.
    Narc: blocked me

    Did I wound him HG or did I ignite his fury by implying I didn’t care?

    Guess I didn’t give any fuel there so he decided to punish me…except I felt almost nothing except the urge to laugh at the predictability. Frankly a little more effort with another text or two and he probably would have gotten an earful of delicious fuel…dang I’m not even worth a text anymore. Not exactly sure how I feel about that, but the fact that I consciously responded in a neutral fashion can’t be a bad thing.

    1. HG Tudor says:

      You wounded him.

      1. Supernova DE says:

        But I told him the ball is in his court…? Wouldn’t he interpret that as having the control back?

        Just confused a bit. If this is wounding then I wounded him so very many times in the past three years by talking with this same tone to my messages, no idea why he stuck around.

        1. HG Tudor says:

          No because you are telling him how it is and thus that’s seen as you asserting control which, as you know, we hate.

          1. Supernova DE says:

            Thank you for clarifying HG. I am shocked at just how sensitive you all are. I felt my response was neutral and maybe slightly submissive…yikes.

            Even more confused as to why he messed with me so long in light of this, but now I understand better why he retreated out of so many conversations, because laying it out bluntly like this is just what I typically do.

            Why do I get the feeling that you, HG, would have applied a bit of charm (either benign or malevolent) to get a dollop of fuel prior to hitting that block button haha 😉

          2. HG Tudor says:

            Because I’m a charming man

          3. MB says:


          4. Supernova DE says:

            Oh so very dangerously true!

  5. Grace says:

    I think I’m at passenger liner. I’ve kept a journal of his hoovers, antics, periods of no contact, etc for 6 months and it helped me “see” the patterns of behavior that I couldn’t process during the HvH battle. I confided in a police officer friend who gave me a 3 step protocol and have followed it precisely.

    Using logic is the only way to get out. It takes discipline like a “narcissist diet” of sorts. When you follow the diet plan and not give into the emotional temptation, you can win. Just like you’ll lose weight if you don’t cheat “here and there” thinking the little cheats aren’t going to matter. They do. No cheating, follow a plan and use logic and discipline.

    1. Omj says:

      Thank you for your journal idea – I will start today

    2. Omj says:

      What are the 3 steps your friend gave you ?

      1. Grace says:

        Write a final text detailing all the ways he should not make contact and agree to do the same for him. It should be straightforward and kind. You are setting the stage. Hit send and go absolutely no contact. If he sends a reply pleading to discuss, you must ignore. Keep the phone pipeline open for awhile to document any attempts he makes to contact. Ignore them all. If they are numerous, step two is to file a basic police report. This is not a restraining order – just a report to show what has happened, what you stated and how he has breached it. Then, three, if he shows up at your house dial 911 and file the restraining order. You will have much more cooperation if you build your case in this manner. You must NOT be weak and reply to any contact he makes.

        I’ve asked him not to contact me before, but I didn’t think of it in terms of the law and what you must be able to prove. I fell for all his tricks to get me to talk to him. Now I am much stronger emotionally and I know that I must follow the protocol. It keeps me in check.

    3. Jane hall says:

      Grace you sound like me.
      I too kept diaries – for years – trying to make sense of the bullshit.
      I read and re read them when we split. It is like a diet you are right!
      For me it is like quitting smoking – which I did many years ago – you cannot have even one cigarette. Its all or nothing.
      Logic and Discipline – absolutely.

      1. Tammy says:

        You said it Jane, it’s all or nothing.

    4. Caroline says:

      just reading this thread today, and found your priceless advice from police about how to break up by text. This needs to be taught in Narcs 101.
      It’s assertive , dignified, self-controlled, empowering and perfectly appropriate.
      Maybe you could repeat the comment on the Last Word page? I think many others would benefit from reading it.
      Many of us struggle to know how to set healthy boundaries in certain circumstances, so thank you for sharing this wisdom with us.

  6. WhoCares says:

    There was a key event (turning point) for me, post-escape, when he sat – for four hours – outside the building where I was.

    I only became aware of him around the two hour mark…the thing was, earlier I had *invited* him inside – but he refused.

    There were legitimate reasons for him to be waiting where he was, for that length of time – so I very nearly reasoned my uneasiness away…nearly.

    Instead, I reached out to a friend, online, several kilometers away (who I’ve known for years but had not seen in a dog’s age) and, thankfully, she made time to talk to me. I explained what had happened – and what was currently happening. She just said: “I’ve known you for years and I know you well, so I’ll just be straight up with you – I feel very alarmed for you.”

    And this is when I realized something was really wrong with me – because the alarm bells should have been blaring…but they were only a vague sense of uneasiness.

    It was during this conversation with my friend that I started receiving a barrage of texts (after at least two hours of silence) from him, asking for what seemed like very reasonable, danger-free requests.

    What he was asking for seemed innocuous and relatively safe…but now I realize what seemed an indecision on the surface was actually a significant internal struggle.

    Somehow I knew it was a fight for who was going to control who – and while I may or may not have been in actual physical danger – I still wasn’t sure…but that uncertainty plus, the fact that his text messages started coming in when I was fairly certain everyone else had left the building. (I couldn’t verify this because to do so would have put me in his line of sight.)

    However it might have played out, it was a key emotional struggle for me, and a real turning point. I’m very thankful – even though she didn’t understand ‘narcissism’ as we do here – that my friend made time for me and just happened to have an understanding of the cycles of abuse.

    I almost gave into him because I felt sorry for him sitting there for almost four hours…maybe nothing would have happened to me but I won that isolated emotional battle…and I also started actively listening to my instincts.

    1. Omj says:

      Thanks for sharing ! Very insightful story

  7. Dronning says:

    #5, 10, 11. I miss his kisses. So I’m fighting an emotional battle/logic with my desire. But I will never be with him again cuz I wouldn’t be able to kiss him with his mouth taped shut. Tx HG

  8. Danielle says:

    Wish I had known about you sooner, HG. Struggling not to feel guilty about no contact with the one threatening suicide, but calling his bluff, I believe it is for the best. Thank you for helping me become more empowered.

    1. HG Tudor says:

      You are welcome.

    2. Danielle,
      This is a tricky situation, this would really pull on my heart strings. I’ve had ones in past threaten suicide, and I hate to think I would be the cause of that with anyone. Some may call me weak perhaps, but i do not care. I could not bear it to think someone took their life because of me.
      So I always gave in, because I would rather they stay in contact than try to kill themselves. I know what its like to feel in that much pain and lose all hope and see no way through a situation.
      You could always have a third party check on them to see if they are ok, but tell them its important they do not say that it was you. I’ve also done this, and it helps with your peace of mind.
      I think only a narcissist can have the lack of empathy within them just not to care whether or not someone kills them self. So I’ve experienced many times. To them, they could not care less.
      But we are different, or I would hope we are in here. We DO care. I think its important to yes become empowered but to get that balance right. We do not wanna become so cold like the narcissists. You can still be empowered but still care.
      We wish to protect ourselves, take precaution, but we still want to have feelings, (yes we can add more logic in there certainly), but again we want to remain empaths still. To feel, is to be human, and is a strength.
      Narcs will have you believe otherwise.

    3. Jane hall says:

      Danielle – my X said to his Son – 2 months after we split and had NC – “I am so close to killing myself” – he actually said that to his son to gain sympathy and attention.
      If he kills himself – then that is HIS choice. If he doesn’t and you give in to him – YOU could end up 6 feet under – after having a heart attack or stroke or cancer – stress does not help – I am a nurse I know. And I made myself ill staying for far tooooooo long.
      Keep reading all the articles here and stay strong. Don’t let HIM destroy you.

      1. WhoCares says:

        Jane hall,

        “YOU could end up 6 feet under – after having a heart attack or stroke or cancer – stress does not help – I am a nurse I know. And I made myself ill staying for far tooooooo long.”

        This is so true. I realize the extent of their inability to care and empathize after being in situations where I was putting my own physical and emotional well-being to the ultimate test – and only the narcs in my life still expected more of me. It was so crystal clear to me then.

        I went no contact with both of them. They both threatened self-harm (one more subtly than the other) and…fast forward to now; they are both fine and have moved on to new targets.

        I nearly did *myself* in (not in self-harm) but by continuing to do what I believed was the ‘right thing’ when still within the context of those relationships.

        They, naturally, present as if they care about your health – but their behaviour (when they demand things of you that actually put your well-being at continued risk) reveals their true priority is ‘numero uno.’

  9. Omj says:

    WoW ! I am exactly there – I am kind of stepping into a relationship again with him but fighting it – one minute I see through – laugh and go on with my life- another minute we have great sex and i say ah… ET is back then he does not call me in the weekend and my LT says ahah… you see he is a narcissist he does not call you to exert control and I go on with my life.
    I have flashback of things he have done that have hurt and instead of being hurt when they come to my mind – my logical thinking comes up and say … of course he did this … he is a narcissist .
    So I am right in this battle now.
    I will reread.
    I have a 3 weeks window before I commit to something that would tie me to him from a certain time – I am riding the battle – I know I should go.
    Sometimes I say to myself … he will do something that will be too much – I know he will – than I have a good excuse to go.
    I don’t need excuses or reasons there are only one – he is a narcissist .
    My LT is stronger tonight .
    I have not spoken to him in a couple days- texts don’t hook me as much now.

  10. Tammy says:

    Thanks HG, for helping me see that right now I have the victory!

  11. Mariposito says:

    I should win this ( hopefully) last battle this time…thanks to YOU

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