Losing My Grip



Do you still remember the first time we held hands? I do. I will never forget. We were walking alongside the river. I had seen you walking there on numerous occasions previously. I would pass you and see you ambling along, completely lost in your own world. I would lean against a nearby tree and watch you as you would stand on the riverbank and gaze out across the flowing river. I would stare at the back of your head as I concentrated on working out what you would be thinking. Occasionally you would take out your ‘phone and take pictures of the river before standing once again in silent contemplation. You wore simple, sensible outdoors attire for these frequent walks. Your only concession to glamour was the scarlet scarf you wore about your neck. You were a creature of habit always taking this walk in early evening at the same time during the summer and then on the cusp of dusk through autumn and winter. You did it every day and each day you would spend some time staring out across the flowing water.

Once in a while you would make this walk with a friend and it was through her that I plotted to get to know you. You and your friend would both drive to the car park and then meet by the café on the edge of the car park and the path that wound along by the river’s edge. I noticed how you always arrived and left independent of one another. It was as if your friendship relied on being contained to this walk and nothing else. After seeing this ritual on many occasions I saw you drive away but your friend went to the café. This was my chance. Taking a replica of the scarf that you wore I entered the café and interrupted your friend as she stood in a short queue.

“Excuse me,” I smiled, ” I was walking along the path and your friend dropped her scarf, I have it here.”

“Oh thank you,” your friend replied and smiling took the scarf from my hand.

“Not a problem, did you enjoy your walk?” I asked pleasantly.

“Yes it is a lovely spot here isn’t it?”

“Absolutely and no matter what the weather or the season there is always something different to see,” I explained. She nodded and using my customary charm I found myself sat with the friend and enjoying a warm drink together. It was in the course of that discussion, a polite conversation on a chilly autumnal late afternoon that I learned your name. Once armed with this information and remembering the other shards of your life that your friend had mentioned in innocent reference I soon tracked you down on Facebook. There I worked through your profile, admiring your photographs and finding more about you. I spent time checking through the films and books that you had liked. They were not many, only a half a dozen in each category and I noticed that Memoirs of a Geisha was one of your favourite books. I knew this book and also its author. As I worked through the pictures I saw the ones of the river where you often stood and I beneath each one you had posted the same quotation which you attributed to someone who I knew was the author of Memoirs of a Geisha.

A little later I saw you stood contemplating the river once again and this time I walked up besides you.

“Never give up for even rivers someday wash dams away,” I said. You turned and smiled at me.

“Arthur Golden,” you answered naturally recognising the quotation and referring to the author of one of your favourites books.

“Correct,” I smiled, “is that why you look out over this river every day, to give you hope?” I asked.

You looked at me as if evaluating whether you should admit me to your confidence. Your did not take long to decide.

“Absolutely. It gives me hope that by looking on something so natural and beautiful as this that it will wash certain things away.”

I knew from the way you had answered that there was more to tell but now was not the time. We talked a little while and then I left you to your contemplations. After that you always said hello and we stood and talked as little by little I was given entry into your world. From standing at that same point we moved on to walking along the river bank as we got to know one another. I took care to walk in step with you. I knew the places you liked to stop and enjoy the view, since I had watched you do so on many times before. Like other fragments of your life that I had learned, I had memorised this and used it to stand with you and comment in an appreciative fashion about the river, the trees and the way the light would strike the surface of the water. Carefully, like the skilled artisan that I am, I would peel away a piece of your life and add it to my own as I grew to know more about you. You spoke of work, your home life and your interests. I noticed you never met your friend for a riverside walk again and it appeared that I had supplant her as your riverside companion. Each time we would walk, talk and then have a drink in the café as my knowledge about you grew. I ensured that I said the things I knew would bring about the best response from you. I knew what to say to make you interested and attentive. I could tell, for I had seen such looks before, that the way you looked at me meant more than just companionship.

Then after perhaps two weeks, maybe a little more, as we strolled along that peaceful riverbank I reached out and took your hand in mine. You did not hesitate. There was no resistance and you allowed my larger hand to engulf yours as you slipped your hand into mine. The movement was natural. You looked at me with a smile and I saw the light flare in your eyes as you felt my power surging from within. You did not let go of my hand once on that walk. In fact that became your signature. The fact you always loved to hold my hand. No matter where we were you would take it and hold on, even twisting your movements to avoid letting go. It was as if you had vowed that whenever you took my hand you would not let it go until I decided. I saw it as your signal of intent to care for me. It was a marker, your way of telling me that no matter what happened you would always be by my side and ready to care for me.

The handholding created this marvellous connection between us. I felt your love and admiration flowing through this handhold and in return you got to savour my brilliance. It was a fantastic connection that had been fashioned in high heaven. The moment our fingers entwined the connection was established and we both got something from it. That was why it worked. That was why we worked. That was why I worked you as I did.

I took full advantage of that but then I think you wanted me to didn’t you? That was why you always held my hand until you let me down. It was only once and you let go. You were never supposed to let go. You never had before despite everything I did, you always clung on. You always gave me that reassurance but then you took it away. I realised that you had no choice but to let go but you still let me down when you did it. I can never forgive you for that. Ever.

Sometimes I can still feel your grasp sliding from mine, the fingers slipping by and then.


Lightning does strike twice.

21 thoughts on “Losing My Grip

  1. Evangelised says:

    Yes I remember caring for her tremendously. Holding her hand epitomised how much I cared. I realised she either totally feigned a serious illness as part of my discard, or grossly exaggerated it. Oh, I had not experienced such anguish, possibly in my entire life. How I longed to hold her hand again. I even prayed excessively for God to heal her, if necessary through sacrificing her ‘friendship’ towards me. It does not surprise me at all now of course, that my prayers were ‘answered’!

  2. ava101 says:

    So, when a mid ranger does stuff like keeping her car keys in his bag / pocket so his wife has to walk to fetch the children, claiming he had just forgotten — is that instinctive??
    Or when he claims that he doesn’t want her to loose focus on her job and therefore, and also because he was busy enough with two children, refuses a third child? Does he believe he supports her??

    And 3. when a narc leaves the country and stays the first nights with a “friend” in the new city, claiming, this friend has a boyfriend, but getting angry when asked about it, and never answered when one would see him before he leaves, though he said he would — is that instinctively using everybody??

    1. HG Tudor says:


      There is instinctive planning also, but that is a detailed matter which is the preserve of consultation to ensure it is understood.

      1. ava101 says:

        I am trying to figure out what the exnarc believes himself. I think you are right.
        It is very weird to read his descriptions of his life with his wife and child(ren).
        But typical, typical narc stuff and triangulation no end … But I begin to think that he REALLY believes what he says.

        1. HG Tudor says:

          Organise a consultation and I will explain.

          1. ava101 says:

            Will I get one for free when you have reapeated this for the exact 100th time?

          2. HG Tudor says:

            No. I’ve repeatedly explained the position and given you answers on the blog for free. If you want the detail and with reference to your own situation the correct route is through a consultation. Nobody is forcing you to use them but similarly I am under no obligation to spend my valuable time explaining something in detail and especially when I’ve given repeated answers before. Go and ask your lawyer or dentist or doctor to do something for you which takes time and expertise and to do so for free. Let me know how you get on.

      2. WokeAF says:

        Instinctive planning! Oh do tell us more

  3. Pati says:

    HG I really love this article. How could a Narcissist without any real feelings make us have this deep and so intense connection with you and then just take it away from us . It’s like taking air so we cant breathe we suffocate. We welcome you into our world give you everything. We now see you world from you perspective and it come tumbling down for us . How could you do this to us. How could we let this happen. We let go of your hand because it wasnt meant to held in the first place . All a lie a theatre production in front of an audience with no applause at the end just silence.

  4. Empath16 says:

    What happens to IPSSs who figure out what you are and try to escape?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      It depends on a variety of factors and therefore I cannot give you an accurate answer based on just one sentence, IPSS. If you need to explain more detail so I have context so I can help, please organise a consultation.

      1. Empath16 says:

        I’m considering a consultation. Not sure if you addressed this as I recently discovered your blog, but do narcissists also feel a sense of ownership of their IPSSs or does that also vary? I am speaking specifically about the Mid-Range variety.

        1. HG Tudor says:

          Hello Empath16, yes it is covered and we do have the mindset that we own you. Do not consider a consultation, organise it.

    2. SMH says:


      It would depend on the type of empath you are and the type of narc he is but here is my experience as an IPSS to a mid-ranger (I do not know what type of empath I am). I figured out what he was and tried to escape (and finally succeeded) but is was a long, long road – it took five tries. I nailed him as a narcissist in the fall of 2016, six months into our ‘relationship.’ I had already escaped once but was not completely successful until May of 2018, right after I found HG. I’ve been NC since then.

      You will go back because you’ll second guess yourself and/or feel guilty or responsible, you will start to doubt your own feelings and assessment of the situation, you will spend hours Googling Aspergers just in case you are wrong, you will get hoovers galore, especially pity plays, and you will fall for them, and finally he will blame shift and deflect so that he can believe that he is leaving you rather than you escaping him.

      1. Empath16 says:

        Thank you. That is what I have been experiencing – 2 attempts at NC. Communication has reduced however due to my reduction is responded and refusing to see him for dates. I am thinking this may be him losing interest due to reduction in/lack of fuel. I’m waiting to see what happens next.

        1. SMH says:

          Hi Empath16, With my MRN, I mostly broke NC. His hoovers were always very indirect, however, and I did not know what they were because I had not found HG, so it was just me second guessing myself a bazillion times. If you can continue to not respond and to refuse dates, the hoovers will probably die down due to the lack of fuel. But since you do not know what else is happening in his fuel matrix (we never do), it is altogether possible that they will continue or restart. I see that HG has encouraged you to have a consultation. I would do that if I were you so you have a better idea of what to expect. I am 18 months NC now and I think I am still getting hoovers (they are virtual and indirect, and therefore hard to know for sure – mid-rangers are very passive). HG would say that total NC means no way of approaching you even virtually, but there are certain things that I cannot or do not want to give up, so that is not an option for me. I hope it is for you and I wish you the best of luck!!

  5. Rali says:

    A cold shiver is running down my spine when I am reading your blogg.

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Put some clothes on then.

      1. Rali says:

        I prefer to stay naked. It is more safety.

        1. HG Tudor says:


  6. Soon to be sparkling! says:

    I enjoyed reading this, which is odd.

    Some might read this as creepy and resembling nothing more than the actions of a stalker!

    Why do I read this as complete, earth shattering romance?

    I absolutely LOVE the effort put in to connect with someone!

    I also might be f*cked in the head!

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