Ever presence. A hugely important element of the narcissistic relationship. We must create it in order to ensure that you are prevented from moving on and to maximise our prospects of executing a successful post escape or post discard hoover. Ever presence is the act of making us seem like we are still with you, even though we are not physically proximate to you.
It is a necessary device so that we remain in your thoughts, we loom large in your memories and we permeate each day as you try to survive without us. Ever presence is highly effective because it is woven into the fabric of our engagement so that it infects all of your senses. We want you to feel us when you hear some music, we want you to think of us when there is a certain fragrance in the air, we want you to recall us when you see a particular item or watch a film, we want you to remember us when your fingers wrap around a particular object and we want you to sense us with you when you taste a drink or a meal.
We do not just want our memory to spring from one item alone but from repeated reminders of what we had together. Largely ever presence is created so you remember the good, so you hark back to the golden period and experience that sense of yearning which causes you to break no contact. There are times when ever presence can be a reminder of the bad times as well although this is rarer and might only be done and activated for the purpose of malign hoovers.
What is going through our mind though when ever presence is created? Is it a conscious act? Do we plan it? Do we consider how best to achieve ever presence or is it just sheer coincidence that it happens, a result of the powerful emotions that we evoke in you that just happen to be imprinted with relatively run of the mill and mundane occurrences?
Are you culpable for the creation of ever presence by falling so deeply and intensely in love with us that you place such emotional stock in certain songs, events and places? Is it all planned and orchestrated, a dark grand design that is wheeled out as part of our ongoing and calculated manipulation of you?
The Lesser, as you might expect, creates the least powerful ever presence. This is as a consequence of two factors. The first is that he does not act through calculation but rather through instinct. He will know that picking a nick name for you, choosing “our song” and sending you a few gifts is part of how the romancing should proceed but he gives little thought as to how this will impact on you. Secondly, the weaving of ever presence occurs through the seduction phase as a consequence of the creation of all these marvellous memories.
The Lesser does not so much go in for love-bombing but rather keeps the beast under lock and key during the golden period (which might be better named as the bronze period for the Lesser Narcissist). Since there is less in the way of love-bombing it follows that there is less sowing of the ever presence. The Lesser does however gain a distinct advantage over the other two schools as a consequence of this approach.
The paucity of ever presence items means that when you happen upon one it has particular resonance. He may not have been overly romantic during the seduction but the fact that he baked some chocolate muffins for you and they became his signature dish means that the memory is especially strong with such an item. The fact that he would only slow dance with you to one particular song means that should you ever hear that song again, the recollection of dancing cheek to cheek is powerful indeed. None of this arises from calculation.
The Lesser does the bare minimum when it comes to the seduction. Taken further, when dealing with the Victim Narcissist (who is usually a Lesser and occasionally a Mid-Range) you actually contribute to the creation of ever presence. This happens because you made certain dishes that he enjoyed and therefore should you make them now, it will remind you of how he praised you for making that delicious pie or tasty lasagne. It might be that every Sunday he took his weekly bath and you would scrub his back and wash his hair for him, pandering to the mothering instinct that many Victim Narcissists require. Each week at 7pm on a Sunday you will be moved to think that this was the time when you would tend to him in the bathroom. Thus the demands and the needs of the Lesser become a form of ever presence in themselves.
The Mid-Range, similarly lacking awareness, does not know that he is creating ever presence. He does however have enough about him to know that making a good effort during seduction will win him the prize that he requires and he will make good use of all the usual tangible effects which go into creating ever presence.
He will sow them through the seduction. He will endeavour to mirror your likes and dislikes but he will also use his ability to evoke pity to good effect in the creation of ever presence. For instance, he may choose certain songs which he claims are representative of his desire for you. You may not actually like the songs that much, perhaps they are a different musical genre to the ones you like, but you are still pleased that he has taken the time to send these songs to you and to make them part of what constitutes “you and him”.
Accordingly, these songs take on a particular resonance as they become representative of the relationship. You could not bear to tell him that you found Luther Vandross or Michael Buble corny, he sidled up to you simpering and cooing, so you went with the flow and allowed them to be woven into the relationship until they mattered.
The Mid-Range places particular emphasis on wooing his victim (whereas the Greater bowls the victim over with his magnificence) and as part of this wooing he will ensure that he looks presentable, takes the victim to special places and treats the victim well, offering gifts and other favours. All of this wooing creates the ever presence which is a happy side effect from the behaviour of the Mid-Range.
The Greater sets out to establish ever presence with his victims. He knows of his addictive quality and wants to get you hooked. He deliberately ascertains what you like not only in order to mirror you as perfectly as possible but also to gather ammunition for the purposes of creating the ever presence.
The Greater knows that for ever presence to be effective it must span the five senses and be regularly imprinted so the victim is conditioned. The Greater also knows that the grander the gesture and of course he is all about the grandiosity, the more likely it is to have an imprinting effect. By combining this with repetition and the breadth and depth of the use of all five senses, the ever presence created by the Greater is formidable indeed. The Greater also goes further because he not only will lace where you live with so much ever presence but he will endeavour to infect other places as well. The place you work, the places you dine, the places you like to shop, to go walking, go cycling and so forth. During the seduction, each time the Greater does something new with his victim he will be looking to imprint his presence on the event. It might be carving the initials on a tree beneath which you sat holding hands, it might be naming the view after you both when you halted on a mountain bike ride. It could be asking a bar man to create a cocktail in your name or ensuring that you are recognised and called by name by the maitre’d at certain establishments.
The Greater knows exactly what he is doing when he creates ever presence. Not only this, he has done it so many times with other victims he knows that it is effective. He already has a template which he applies. A template of songs, fragrances, textures, places and tastes that he uses for each victim. He might vary some of the items within this template, but often they are the same. He will ensure that his cologne is distinct and unusual, that there are key songs that embody the relationship, he will leave a particular piece of clothing with you early on which is pleasant to touch, he will ensure there are signature bars, restaurants, walks and such like.
This imprinting will continue in the bedroom where he will perhaps unveil a particular word or phrase which is unusual (to you) which he uses on the point of orgasm (yours or his) or as a safe word. He will murmur something in your ear and touch you in a particular way, when combining with music in the same way to ensure that your sensations are heightened so that when you hear that song, you not only think of the Greater but you hear his voice in your ear and his breath on your neck.
Whether it is instinct or calculation, it is done.
After all, if it works and is efficient, he will go along with it.
2 thoughts on “Everpresence”
Classic Pavlovian conditioning
Anne, great idea for my 20 Bullets list! Pavlov was probably a narcissist! Thanks!