The Errors of the Ignorant – No. 2


ignorant 2

A series based on the comments made by people who fail to understand the true nature of narcissists and the narcissistic dynamic. Whilst these comments may be well-intentioned, they are incorrect, perpetuate misunderstandings and in many cases create false hope, dashed expectations and perilous outcomes.

‘Let him go but tell him you will always be there for him.’

I have seen this advice given when an individual has been entangled with our kind. The victim has endured the push and pull behaviour of being told that they are not good enough for us as they suffer the devaluation. They cling on and then a Respite Period occurs. Thus they think that their indefatigable approach has caused the return of the golden period. Ultimately, its return is down to us and our decision and not about what you have done. It might be that an external source, such as an Intimate Partner Secondary Source has infuriated us and therefore they have been devalued and therefore to create the contrast, we have given you the golden period again through the imposition of a Golden Period. You might have done something especially impressive through the provision of positive fuel to cause it to return as you have outfuelled your (unknown) rival or rivals. Whatever it was, the decision is down to us.

Accordingly, this on then off, this push then pull, this up and down, in and out behaviour has left a victim totally puzzled as to what is going on. The narcissist may have said such things as

“This is not working, I need space.”

“Perhaps if we have time apart this will bring us closer together again.”

“I need space to clear my thoughts.”

“You are putting me under pressure and I do not need it, just give me room.”

All of these comments are issued as part of the ongoing manipulation to confuse you. Yesterday we went for a wonderful picnic with you and today we are talking about needing space. You do not understand. What has changed? From your perspective nothing has. From ours, it is the switching nature of our perspective whereby we feel the need to exert control over you and gain fuel from you. Yesterday we thought it would look good for the façade to spend time with you and the children and you all gave me positive fuel. It was a good day. First thing this morning, the Candidate IPSS left me a glowing and admiring voicemail which shifted my attention on to them and reminded me why you have irritated and annoyed me. She is white, you have been painted black again and when you tried to hug me this morning, seeking to capitalise on yesterday’s delightful day, you were rebuffed and chastised for smothering me. You recoiled, hurt and confused. Pushed away again after having been pulled in.

After months of this you speak to a well-meaning friend, seek the advice of some supposed relationship expert and you convey your misery, the uncertainty and how often we have talked about splitting up and spending time apart. This advisor listens and fails to recognise the behaviour of our kind and what is behind it. They attribute it to someone who is failing to value you (which is correct) but they do not grasp the real reason behind such behaviour. You have fallen into the victim’s trap of trying to find a reason to explain this behaviour through either the influence of an external agent or in common with your capacity to self-flagellate, your own apparent shortcomings. Between the two of you, you conclude that the position at work and a recent bereavement have resulted in this confusion, this failure to identify priorities with you and your advisor suggests that giving us the often spoken about space would be advantageous.

“Show him that you will give him what he keeps saying that he needs but also let him know that he continues to have your love and support. Let him know that you are there for him when he needs you but you are going to help him by giving him the space that he requires to get his head together. He will get what he needs, value your support and then realise just how much he wants and needs you,” the advisor explains.

So, feeling reassured by these apparently sagacious words and the detailed conversations you have had with this advisor, you tell us that you are going to let us go, but that you will always be there for us.

Bad move.

Of course you will always be there for us.  We expect that already. It is the central feature of the Narcissistic Relationship, that you belong to us. You are only telling us something which we know anyway.

What we actually hear when you say this sentence, or something similar to it, is not that you are trying to do what we want. We do not hear that you are trying to accord with what we desire, no matter how much you would rather not do so. We fail to recognise this act of sacrifice on your part. Why? Because as ever we are far too concerned for ourselves. What we hear is that you are trying to escape us.

It does not matter that we have been the ones who have threatened to leave, that we have repeatedly told you to back off, leave us alone, give us space, that we are thinking of going, leaving, separating or however we decide to describe it. No, that is irrelevant and of course we will twist and deflect to ever deny we said those things (you made us do it of course because it is YOUR fault).

We hear you saying you are leaving us. You are escaping. You as our IPPS are about to cut off the supply of our precious fuel and this fills us with horror at this prospect. Your words wound us and accordingly we react through the ignition of our fury. You are criticising us (according to our perspective) and therefore this wounds us. Our self-defence mechanism kicks in and our fury ignites. How this manifests varies dependent on the type of narcissist you are dealing with. You may be shouted at, attacked, emotionally black-mailed, we may burst into tears (crying for ourselves of course – not you and not the death of the Formal Relationship) or we engage in charm and threat to halt your intended departure. (You can read more about how we react to being told that you are ‘escaping’ in   How No Contact Feels – Part One  How No Contact Feels Part – Two  and  How No Contact Feels – Part Three).

This supposedly kind and charitable act on your part will be met with an attempt to stop you leaving. This will both confuse and relieve you. You will undoubtedly remain, as you never really wanted to allow this cessation for the provision of space in the first place and you will confirm to us that you do not want it to end. You will reassure and in so doing provide fuel. We will appear pleased, relieved and so forth and of course we do not want to lose our primary source of fuel. At least, not until we are ready to dis-engage.

Do not think that your kindness and consideration will be met with approval thereafter however. Your attempt will be thrown back in your face as evidence of your treachery (and do not even think about suggesting you were only doing what we want) and you will be punished for this traitorous behaviour through the continuance of the devaluation and the imposition of greater nastiness. Your confusion will return. You tried to do the right thing and your advisor suggested this was the right thing to do and look what happened. This is, of course, because nobody has identified what you have entangled with nor understood how we behave.

You are bewildered, perplexed and miserable again.

Do we want you or do we not want you?

Of course not.

We want your fuel.


29 thoughts on “The Errors of the Ignorant – No. 2

  1. Leolita says:

    HG, do you plan to write about how psychopathy manifests with regard to the different schools of narcissism?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      It is on the list, with a lot of other matters.

  2. Tired says:


    I have never told him I’d always be there for him, the opposite, that I wouldn’t want to ever see or speak to him again if we divorced. And I meant every word.,

    As a mid ranger ( upper I think) could that be why he never leaves despite my telling him on several occasions over the years to get out?
    I’m thinking he would leave if he found something better ( he cannot be alone) , would’ve thought he could have accomplished that years ago, but after 30+ years he’s still here.
    Much more difficult for him now that his looks are fading fast, and body failing.
    Maybe he’s afraid to leave now because he’s thinking about dying alone in a nursing home? Therefore, he feels trapped and resents me for it ?

    That’s rich if that’s the case , resenting the Wife who has done nothing but be good to him all these years. Took my trust over and over and smashed it to smithereens .
    But expects me to wipe his arse when the day comes he can’t do it himself. Sacrifice the rest of my years left after all the BS ? Selfish prick.

    That’s where my guilt comes in . Who will take care of him? Surely not the current DLS , she’s too fond of partying. He’s promised her all the things he’s denied me , trips to exotic places, fine dining, new home, etc-. She also is not aware at all of his huge substance abuse problem. Don’t know how he’d ever hide that from her if they lived together. Impossible.

    Must be some mighty strong prime aims I’ve been satisfying all these years for him to still be here, and I didn’t even know it ?!?!

    ET very strong today!

    1. WhoCares says:


      “Who will take care of him?”

      Who has been taking care of you?

      1. HG Tudor says:

        Valid point.

        “Who will take care of him?” Emotional thinking and you should fuck that sky high.

        1. Tired says:


          I’m counting on you to help me fuck that ET sky high .
          I’m counting on you to help me win.
          I’m counting on you to help me dish out the revenge he and his current DLS deserve in spades.

          I’ve been put through the wringer almost more than I can bear , and I’ve done it fairly stoically all these years. I’m not going quietly, not after more than 3 decades of this BS.

      2. Tired says:


        You’re right. I know if I got ill I could not count on him to look after me.
        In the past if I was sick, with flu or what have you, he was useless. I’ve always looked after myself.

        1. WhoCares says:


          You can never count on them.

          And even when you think you are rocking it and handling it all, you are still looking after yourself, the kids and his needs – all while he undermines your efforts.

    2. NarcAngel says:

      My question is blunt.
      Aren’t you really hoping (perhaps subconsciously) to hear that his staying validates your worth?

      1. Tired says:


        No. I know I deserve better. I know I don’t deserve the BS he’s put me through.
        I’ve always had a “ problem “ caring for others even if they’ve been horrible to me .
        Guess I’m a sucker for pity plays ?

        1. NarcAngel says:

          Most of us are here because we have a problem “caring” for others. Putting it that way sounds noble but it is actually addiction and you are in the grip of it. Three decades in which you have forgiven past transgressions because you believe they did not include sex. You say you would not be able to stay if they had, but ask yourself if before they happened if you think you would have forgiven those transgressions alone regardless, or if you ever thought you would tolerate substance abuse or the abuse he doles out to you. You would not, as it is unimaginable for someone not in the grip of addiction. It goes against all logic. But most of us have been chipped away at in the very same way and understand that there you still are. Wanting to learn how to manipulate him while you are still there is really your addiction asking: how can I adapt so that I can stay with him forever. How many more decades are you prepared to sacrifice? It has no intention of having you leave. This blog is filled people who were/are not ready to leave emotionally or financially. If three decades is not enough time to get your “ducks in a row” it would indicate that there will never be a time when you are “ready”. Your emotional thinking (addiction) to him also has you already thinking ahead to feeling guilty if he were alone in the end. It never rests. If your children were being treated by their spouse as you are, would you advise them to stick with it and endure as you have until they were “ready”. I bet not. You are understandably hurt and angry, but it seems odd from an outside perspective (well at least mine) that you have done all the sacrificing in maintaining the relationship at all costs and then you wonder why he has stayed all these years? The question is not why he has stayed all these years but rather why have you? Your addiction is so strong that it is also thinking ahead in contemplating revenge. That is actually just another way of staying involved and not letting go. To still be involved with him disguised as taking action for yourself.

          I hope you consult with HG. There is no one better to explain your husband’s behaviour, but he can also give you insight into yours. Who better to tell you what they want and need from us in order to achieve their aims, and how we are much to their delight, duped into providing exactly that?

          I wish you well Tired.

          1. HG Tudor says:

            Well stated, NA.

          2. Tired says:


            Thank you for your reply.
            You’re right, I would absolutely tell my children to run if they were being treated poorly. My children tell me to divorce him.
            It has happened not continuously for three decades, but perhaps 5-6 times. In between there were good years , but manipulation and control I didn’t recognize until I started reading here.

            The behavior has made me physically ill, I think because now I know he’s a narc . I’ve never felt sick like this before. I can’t read here all the time, I need to take short breaks because what I read here sometimes upsets me so.
            If I had felt like this years earlier, if I knew years earlier, I would be divorced now.
            I cannot live the rest of my life feeling this way. It’s killing me.

            When I speak of revenge, I speak in terms of divorce. Of exposing him and his DLS . Telling the truth to others who were not aware. Nothing more, nothing less. That exposure of them couldn’t begin to even touch on the emotional and physical pain they have caused me.
            The only thing I’m guilty of is being a good wife. They are both guilty of some pretty disgusting behavior, some of it directed at me intentionally. I have proof of that. There will be no “he said she said “.

            When I divorce him I will have no problem with N/C . I’d never want to see nor speak to him again. I’m here because I need help getting to that point.

            I see stories here of people who spend months or a few years with a narc who is awful to them, and I don’t understand why they put up with it , no marriage, no children.
            It’s a lot more difficult to flush 30+ years of marriage, children, finances etc- .
            Perhaps there are some people who are much stronger than me and jump right off the merry go round after a long term marriage, but I’m guessing most are like me and need time to process it, plan, and strategize for a future without the narc. Especially when you have been blindsided , have never worked outside the home and spent your life raising the children and supporting the narc so his career could flourish.

            Part of me understands it’s an addiction to him , part of me is worried about finances, part of me still worries about his health, part of me is not prepared for the all out war I know will happen in divorce proceedings.

            Some days I feel strong, others I feel paralyzed.

            He has sucked me dry to such an extent , some days I don’t know who I am anymore.

            You can bet your butt I’m angry and hurt, but I’m also determined to effectuate a final outcome in my favour, and that will take some time.

            As always your input is valuable, thought provoking, and helpful.
            I know it sounds sometimes I make excuses for staying, but be patient with me, I’m trying.
            Please do call me out if you see me post something that’s screaming “ EMOTIONAL THINKING “ I truly appreciate every reply I get here.
            Poor HG , I think I’m going to need to book a 12 hour consult with him, I couldn’t possibly get it all out in a shorter one.

            Thank you again, NA .

          3. Violetta says:


            No one’s going to get impatient with you here. Recently, I had a dream where I was doing Carousel, or rather living it–it wasn’t a show; somehow I had become Julie Jordan. I was supposed to sing “If I Loved You” with Billy Bigelow, and suddenly I said, “No, I’m not doing this. I know how this ends: you’ll rough me up, make big plans for a son, then die before you can be disappointed that it’s a daughter, and she’ll be bullied and rejected. Then I’m supposed to claim it doesn’t hurt when you hit me when it fucking well does. I’m not going to sing, “What’s the Use of Wonderin’?” either.

            I started to walk off and he said, “Well, you won’t meet anyone else you want to be with as much as me, and you won’t have any kids at all.” And I woke up to that reality.

        2. Tired says:


          Thank you.
          I wonder how many of us have dreams like yours? I call them nightmares . I have nightmares over this like yourself. For months now I can’t escape it, it invades my dreams and a good nights sleep is foreign to me.

  3. Empath007 says:

    Hello HG,

    I wanted to let you know I saw your response to my desperate plea for help a few weeks back. The sight has changed since I’ve last been (it looks sharp btw) and I will definitely look into obtaining some of your new work. As for now… I have blocked him again, I thankfully did not reach out and contact him, I found my inner strength and no doubt that was thanks to the information you have provided me with here on this sight. The COVID situation weakened me for a few weeks, but ultimately… I need to choose me.

    I had a question that has been on my mind since the start of the COVID Crisis. If you have the time, wondering if you could answer.

    1) Is a narcissist capable of feeling fear ?
    For example, If a female narcissists encounters a rape, or a home invasion (specifically in that MOMENT) can a narcissist feel fear ? I would assume they would use the story as a means to gain fuel after the fact, but was wondering if it would be possible to feel it during.
    Pertaining to whats going on in the world right now, if an at risk narcissist got sick… could they be fearful, or would they generally feel indestructible to a disease (any life threatening disease). I’m just curious as to what it may be.

    Regarding this specific article and advice… I’m seeing a lot of others go back to their own toxic relationships right now amidst the crisis and tbh… Even with all of my knowledge, and even when I can hear obvious narcissistic patterns (either from themselves or their partners) I view it as generally useless to share my knowledge with them because ultimately… its not what they want to hear and they need to gain the understanding themselves. I wonder if a lot of people feel that way and do not want to give honest advice because they deem it as useless. Also, many psychologists are narcs themselves and may not see an issue with the behavior or be at all phased by it. They may just be giving people the answers that most benefit their own income… the longer the toxic couple needs therapy… the longer they get paid for their services appearing to try and “fix it”… which is another reason professionals are typically on the best.

    Thanks for your time. Hope you are well and safe.

    1. HG Tudor says:

      1. Yes, narcissists experience fear.

      1. But not Psychopaths?

        1. HG Tudor says:


          1. Alexissmith2016 says:

            Great! Thank you HG.
            Do psychopaths exist across the schools? And if yes is it possible for a greater to be a narc only and not always a psychopath?

          2. HG Tudor says:


          3. WhoCares says:

            Ooh – great question Alexissmith2016.

          4. alexissmith2016 says:

            Oooh just seen your ‘Yes’ answer. that’s helpful HG – thank you.

            I recall early days post knowledge and one of the books I had read had psychopath in the title, now I know better, what they really meant was narcissist. I was attempting to establish whether someone was a P (they are an N) and I made them jump, therefore I naively concluded they could not be a P. I did not know about Ns at the time.

        2. Lorelei says:

          I’m a psychopath Alexis. I be not afraid of the dark.

          1. alexissmith2016 says:

            Hahahahaha I’m actually not too afraid of many things. But there are some things and it must be amazing to be fearful of nothing.

      2. Empath007 says:

        Thank you HG. I find that fascinating.

    2. lisk says:

      “I’m seeing a lot of others go back to their own toxic relationships right now amidst the crisis . . . ”

      I am not one of them. WOOHOO! I’m not even craving my former narc, thanks to HG and his blog.

      1. HG Tudor says:

        Well done.

      2. Empath007 says:

        Good for you Lisk. I find he has been occupying my mind on a daily basis for a very lengthy period of time now. At this point… it is ME who is the problem and can simply not seem to let go. With that said, I have not seen or spoken to him in nearly 2 years… so I will remain no contact.

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