The Doormat



The doormat. There it lies with a pleasant greeting of “welcome home” emblazoned upon it and all it gets is routinely overlooked and trampled on, but it never flinches, it never backs away from performing its function. Many of our victims find themselves regarded as doormats by our kind. Not only is this evidenced by the way that we regard you but it is also as a consequence of the way that we treat you. It is not those factors alone however that cause me to ascribe the label of Doormat to a particular appliance. Much of it comes from the thinking, attitude and mind set of the relevant victim.

I have mentioned my sister, Rachael previously. Whereas I trod the path that has led me to where I am today, Rachael found herself becoming a doormat. She was routinely trampled on by all the members of our family and I watched and observed as we grew older as to how this manifested. As time progressed and with the increasing awareness that I have obtained, allied with the observations of the good doctors, I identified certain characteristics that she has which I have also seen in those who have been my primary source victims. I have concluded that whilst numerous of these victims have come close to being doormats, only three have actually achieved that status along with my sister.

Now, it is a mistake to think that a doormat would be regarded as weak. Naturally my kind think this but that is part of our mechanism for maintaining our superiority by pouring scorn on your traits and how they lead you to be treated. Those who are doormats exhibit a different kind of strength.

They are weak in that they fail to assert themselves with sufficient emphasis to enable them to escape the worst of out treatment, but they possess a strength by virtue of those characteristics. To be able to have those characteristics and keep them, whilst being abused, ignored, trampled on and taken for granted, is perversely a form of strength and one which we welcome.

We want appliances that will keep functioning, obeying us, pouring out the fuel and complying, without breaking down and malfunctioning the first time matters become rough. Finding a doormat amongst our victims is gratifying because it means that this person will not depart us, they have no desire to do so. It goes further however because they wish to stay not only for our reasons but for their own fulfilment as well. They pour fuel in our direction, remain subservient and compliant. What are the traits that constitute a doormat?

  1. The individual is sensitive and guilt-ridden.
  2. This person has learned to survive hostile environments by meeting our need for gratification. This first and foremost applies to the provision of fuel but it also goes further. The doormat will gratify us by allowing us to do what we want, recognises our need and right to do so, allows us to utilise whatever resources we see fit and caters for all of our needs in terms of fuel, trait provision and residual benefits.
  3. The doormat’s perception of love has become skewed. This person seeks love through the excessive accommodation of another’s needs. This may not just be us when we have attached them as a primary source to us, but in respect of other individuals. Those individuals may not be narcissistic but the doormat still wishes to accommodate the wishes of other people (something which of course irritates us and leads to conflict) because the doormat regards his or her role as one of accommodating everybody because then that means that they will be loved.
  4. The doormat simply gives too much. They do not take. They give of themselves on every level, from their emotions, their dedication, their time, their energy, their thoughts and their resources. They are impressively resourced in these matters and appear to have almost limitless time, energy etc. although eventually it becomes evident that they have not.
  5. The doormat does not feel safe unless he or she gives. If they perceive that they are taking they feel alarm and distress. If they are neither giving or taking they feel restless and out of their comfort zone. The need to provide and to give allows them to fulfil their role and in turns embodies a sense of safety for them. Once they begin to feel safe they will continue to give in order to remain in this safe place. This is why the doormat is drawn to our kind because we are takers and do so on a vast scale. We are made for the doormat and even though the doormat may not know what we are, their coupling with us, provides them with an innate sense of safety and security.
  6. The doormat must meet the emotional needs of the narcissist. We are empty. We are voids and your emotional attention, your fuel, needs to be poured into us. The doormat feels a need to ensure that those excessive emotional needs are met (although fails to realise that this can never be achieved) and therefore remains hooked and beholden to us in as the doormat tries to achieve the impossible. I have watched my sister continue to do this with Matrinarc.
  7. The doormat suffers low self-esteem but this is boosted by the success of the narcissist. My victims who were doormats found that their self-esteem was increased by my achievements and my accomplishments. I watched my sister gather her self-esteem from being linked to the achievements of MatriNarc, my father and me. This is a curious behaviour and is not unlike our stealing of traits from those around us in order to add them to our construct and in turn make us look better and more attractive. The doormat does not acquire the traits of our success but the fact we are successful and they are linked with us results in their self-esteem being increased.
  8. The doormat has a high tolerance to emotional abuse. The lashing out through heated fury and cold fury from our kind against the doormat causes the doormat to realise that the emotional need of our kind has increased. This signals to them that they must leap into action. They have a call of duty and rather than find the emotional abuse debilitating (at least at first) they regard it as a useful signal for them to do something in order to cater for it. However, all the doormat is doing is allowing a pressure to build up of this repeated emotional abuse. The doormat can tolerate it for longer than a standard victim but then there comes a point where the threshold is reached, the pressure can no longer be sustained and withheld and at that point there is a substantial and serious damaging effect on the doormat from the release of this pressure.
  9. The doormat feels guilt when catering for his or her needs and therefore almost in a masochistic way will place themselves in the firing line once again with our kind in order to assuage this guilt.
  10. The doormat feels undeserving of being loved. They want to be loved for what they do, rather than for what they are. They regard themselves of fundamentally unworthy of love save when they are carrying out their role. With my sister I saw this with both my father and mother. My father emphasised how it was important to help others and my sister saw that as a clear signal to flagellate herself in catering to the needs of others and especially our kind. My sister also explained to me that in respect of MatriNarc that she never says that she is happy but that my sister knew MatriNarc was happy with her because of how my sister felt, namely devoid of guilt and valued because of her excessive giving. I regarded her thinking as deluded but I did not correct it, because it served my purposes as well.

Listen to ‘The Doormat’

8 thoughts on “The Doormat

  1. Melmel says:

    I hate the word Resilience. A therapist told me recently that I lack resilience. To which I pointed out that I have survived much and the mere fact that I am still here must say something… My mother used to say that I am Spunky. Like the Energizer Bunny I guess.

    “The doormat has a high tolerance to emotional abuse… The doormat can tolerate it for longer than a standard victim but then there comes a point where the threshold is reached, the pressure can no longer be sustained and withheld and at that point there is a substantial and serious damaging effect on the doormat from the release of this pressure.”

    The world doesn’t see emotional abuse. It’s not something a victim can properly describe. When the pressure is released and damage occurs, then the world sees and they scratch their head like “What happened???” Everyone is perplexed when the bright and hopeful child becomes a confused, anxious, haunted woman.

    I find this article extremely validating.

    1. A Victor says:

      Melmel, good job on straightening that therapist out.

      Have you considered doing the EDC? It, especially along with the TDC, was highly validating for me. It’s been invaluable in my learning.

    2. Bubbles 🍾 says:

      Dearest Melmel,
      Seven skills of resilience
      1. Cultivate a belief in your own ability to cope
      2. Stay connected with sources of support
      3. Talk about what you’re going through
      4. Be helpful to others
      5. Activate positive emotion
      6. Cultivate an attitude of survivorship
      7. Seek meaning

      Psychologists define resilience “as the process of adapting well in the face of adversity, trauma, tragedy, threats, or significant sources of stress – such as family/relationship problems, serious health problems, workplace and financial stressors”

      We cop the lot !

      I’m glad you threw it back in their face …..they know Jack !!!!
      Good onya 😉
      Luv Bubbles xx 😘

      1. Melmel says:

        Bubbles thank you for that lovely list! #1 and #2 are the hardest for me… Owing to being told my whole life that I am wrong so developing a belief that I am incapable of coping by myself, and that asking for help (even from sources that freely offer support) is selfish and draining for others.

        Therapy is helping tremendously with those as I relearn my inner narrative. #6 is a strength, which is why I was able to identify to said therapist that his observation was a little tunnel-visioned. Usually I immediately internalize these kinds of statements and make them part of my inner truth without any critical assessment first, but this time it didn’t land. I’m slowly learning boundaries and how to only internalize things that are 1. True (vs. false), and 2. About me (vs. about the person making the statement).

        AV, I really would like to do the TDC and EDC, but as I mentioned above, I am still working on my ability to hold space between what others think/say about me and my own inner narrative. I am worried that what HG thinks/says in the consults will affect me in a negative way and set me back in my progress. I think from some comments in other threads, that he likely thinks that I am an unaware narcissist. I have thoroughly explored this possibility and have rejected it, but I’m still not strong enough to stand firm on that yet. Right now my narcissistic traits are quite prominent. Because of the persistent influence of narcissists since childhood, and that I am dealing with multiple narcissistic conflicts currently, my ET is very strong. Also, as part of my therapy I have had to “tap in” to some of these traits to try to build up my sense of self-worth and self-esteem in order to create some boundaries with people that I previously allowed to trample all over me. In some areas of my life, I am finding that beautiful balance between opening up to Empathy, and establishing and maintaining healthy boundaries, but it is still definitely a work in progress in others.

        HG has been a tremendous help in putting into words things that are happening in and around me, and to identifying relationships in my life that are toxic or have the potential to become toxic. This blog is very helpful as I read and speak to other Empaths that continue to struggle with their narcissists, or recognize when they are being targeted and escape. I have a book called Self-Care for Empaths, and one of the things the author recommends is building a community or support group of Empaths.

        So thanks everyone for sharing your stories, reaching out, and responding. Thanks for giving me a place to put some of the spinning in my head down in words. It’s all helping.

  2. A Victor says:

    December Infinity, I also knew nothing of narcissism, despite being abused by them my whole life, until 6 months ago, after arriving here. But, we can see the red flags and walk away when we see them, we can! I am so thankful to have learned that here! We deserve a person who will treat us with respect and dignity! You deserve that! I hope you believe that.

  3. Ciara says:

    The “Doormat “ has a high tolerance.There are 2 type of people in the world : Givers and Takers.The takers eat well, but the givers sleep well.

    1. Asp Emp says:

      Your comment made me laugh……. good analogy though.

  4. December Infinity says:

    I understand the concept, but I detest the word ‘doormat’. It signifies a lack of importance, zero self esteem and constant people pleasing, which is what is described in the above article. I can relate to this as I have endured many years of abuse at the hands of narcissists, commencing with my mother. I guess my ability to cope in such circumstances can be regarded as a certain quality, however such capability (and/or lack thereof) clouded my judgement and eventual safety in many cases. There is so much for me to learn. I knew very little about narcissism, despite the decades of abuse. Especially when it comes to seeing the red flags, walking away from a bad situation and saying nothing. In some cases, less is more, or in the case of dealing with a narcissist, (saying) nothing is everything,

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