A Brief Period of Rejoicing


The period of devaluation will feel like an ongoing onslaught against you as the various methods of manipulation are deployed against you. We know that is cannot be an unending assault, for no matter how tempting it may be to keep exacting the negative fuel from you as a consequence of your tears, fear, frustration and anger, there is only so much that you can sustain before you decide that enough is enough and you depart.

Bringing about such a swift cessation of our primary source of fuel is contrary to our needs and therefore the abusive regime must be rationed in order to provide for the maximum return. Furthermore, if we were to maintain a permanent state of abuse then we would also bring about your failure to function as a reliable appliance. Either you would break under the onslaught or you would eventually become de-sensitised too it and no matter how hard we tried to up the ante, it just would not have the same effect. Whether broken or de-sensitised such a condition results in the interruption to our fuel supply and that is of the paramount importance.

To avoid this happening we will provide various periods of respite during the devaluation phase. This creates the push and pull factor that you become so familiar with. This is what creates the sensation of being strapped to a rollercoaster with no capacity to control its direction or speed. You will be subjected to a silent treatment out of nowhere. One moment you will be relaxing on a Sunday afternoon after a pleasant lunch and then you ask us an innocent question. There is no answer. You ask again in case we have not heard but we remain reading the newspaper. You ask a third time and we fold down a section of the newspaper so that we may peer at you from behind it as that ice-cold glare forms.

You are immediately taken aback and your look of hurt and confusion provides the fuel as you ask us what is the matter. Silence. You ask again. Silence. You get up and come over to us and keep asking what is wrong, what is it that you have said, please will we talk to you. More silence. You replay the day so far, in your mind and then you engage in asking us whether when you did this was that what has upset us? Or perhaps when you said something else, is this what has brought this silence on? We of course give you now clues, we provide no answers and your anxiety increases. You move away, desperate to know what it is that has caused the sudden silence but you are wary of irritating us further.

You fix us a drink but it is left untouched and then when you next return to the living room we have vanished. You call out through the house and search through it but we cannot be found. Our car has gone from the driveway and you ring our mobile ‘phone. It rings but there is no answer. You keep trying and you also send text messages but there comes no response. This lasts a day, three days or even more and throughout this your anxiety and worry has heightened. All the while we know precisely how you will be reacting and we also see the calls, the texts and we are told by friends that you have been in contact with them worried sick. It all provides fuel.

We then walk back into the house as if nothing has happened and smile at you. We see the relief flood across you and the tears of joy welling in your eyes as yet more fuel comes our way. We hold our arms out and like the child being granted access again to a once angry parent you dart into them, the surge of emotion rippling across you as you feel relieved, delighted and happy. This cessation of the silent treatment, or another form of abusive manipulation that we will deploy during the devaluation stage does not end there.

We take it further. We reinstate the golden period so that not only are you so relieved that the horrible silent treatment has ended you become elated that this wonderful period has returned. We treat you like we did during the seduction, telling you how much we love you, we buy you a gift, we help out around the house and arrange to take you somewhere special for dinner. That night we take you to be and make love to you in that delicious way once again and you sleep soundly, feeling safe and secure once again.

You give yourself a pat on the back for having endured the difficult period of our silent treatment because it has been worth it in the end. The golden period has come back. You gently scold yourself for having even been worried and rationalise that we obviously needed some space or it was a reaction to being under considerable stress at work. You may have asked us about why we disappeared and you will not have received the truth. You will have been give plausible platitudes such as

“I’ve a lot on my mind and I need room to think.”

“I had to get out before something terrible happened between us.”

“I need some space to breathe, things have been intense as of late.”

These are just excuses that we know you will accept because you are the forgiving type and besides, we are back and the golden period is as well, so you do not want to do anything to jeopardise that by subjecting us to some kind of inquisition. Indeed, there are times, despite your need to know, that you decide it is better to ask nothing and instead revel in the fact that we have come back. We will act as if nothing has happened and you are content to accept that. Peace is so much more enjoyable than war and what a golden peace it is too.

Whether it is the silent treatment, shouting at you, criticising you, intimidating you, messing about with other women or men or all of them, we will call a halt (and there is no logic as to when this will happen so do not think you can see a sign that it is about to change) when we see fit and end the awful treatment by providing you with respite.

This respite prevents you from upping sticks. It prevents you from failing to function. It maintains our source of fuel. This respite provides the contrast so that the positive fuel arising from your joy, delight and relief is powerful indeed. It also provides the contrast for when the devaluation will commence again and it will, so that the negative fuel that flows takes on renewed potency.

Moreover, this acts of kindness which are scattered throughout the devaluation period as a whole act to bind you to us. You feel relief. You also know, when the abuse begins again, that if you hang in there and try to work things out, the golden period will come back once again, you just have to wait and keep working hard to recover it. You are duped into thinking that its restitution is as a consequence of your clingability and something you have done to please us. It is not. You may as well roll a die and the number will equate to the number of weeks of abuse that you will endure before we switch and provide you with respite.

Just like the terrorist who takes civilians hostage and frightens and beats them, he will show an act of kindness by allowing the captive to shower or make a call to a relative. The captive then feels warmth towards their captor, despite what they are doing to the captive overall and this engenders hope that another small act of kindness will be exhibited if the captor is kept onside. You are captive to our narcissistic wiles and just like a hostage you will await these moments of tenderness, kindness and the return of the golden period.

You will do what you can to keep us onside so that they can return because we have imbued you with the hope that the golden period will return. Thus you remain bound to us and this will allow us to continue the extraction of fuel. This has to happen for the contrast is required to allow the devaluation to be protracted and to continue to provide the fuel.

You are duped into believing that you can influence us to cause the restoration of the golden period and keep it in place. You cannot. You may as well roll a die and the number that comes up will be the number of weeks that you will endure the particular abusive manipulation or manipulations before we suddenly switch back to a period of respite and the golden period.

You will rejoice when this golden period returns and you are given respite. The reality is that it will only ever be a brief period of rejoicing.

25 thoughts on “A Brief Period of Rejoicing

  1. jasmin says:

    During many years I was after him, pleading, asking what’s the matter, trying to please.
    One day I thought -‘This is not fair. He is obviously mad about something and in a relationship you have to communicate your problems. To just stay quiet and reject me isn’t ok’. After that I stopped pleading and just felt upset instead.
    When I became painted white again and he found me angry; he used charm and humor to make me laugh in order to break my defenses and get entrance.
    I started to hate that I couldn’t laugh and be angry at the same time!

    1. Joa says:

      Wow! Just like me! Even when I was furious with “my N”, at the sight of him a smile spreaded over my face and radiated from my eyes. And I was even more furious – with myself – for that smile.

      And right now, as I write this, I still smile so stupidly. Holy shit. No words…

      1. Jasmin says:

        I’m very familiar with that smile. I turned my head around to try to hide it..

      2. Wendy says:

        Joa, the smile that radiated from my ex’s face made me melt ever single time! It was beautiful! I can remember seeing him light up when we met and even on a video chat. His smile still haunts me and I’m thankful we live a state away from each other because even now if he happened to appear and I saw his face and that unbelievable smile of his I believe it could be all it takes to make me want him back! And the cycle would begin again! I totally admit to being very vulnerable at this point even after all I know. The power that they have over is scary! But, I pray I’m stronger!

        1. Joa says:

          Wendy, I understand very well.

          Remembering his smile, laughter and lazy purring (he purred like a happy cat basking in the sun) is very dangerous for me (longing bursts my chest).

          At the same time, it brings me relief. I’d rather see him like that, than frustrated and hatred. It keeps me mentally going. Instantly I feel so sorry and so sad, that I want to turn into a projectile that will instantly reach him, crash into him and spread optimism all over his body and mind.

          Contrary to appearances, despite the great pain, his smile – even directed at someone else – would allow me to gently leave him.

          He is an unrealized task. I am not satisfied with the effect of my work 🙂

          But yes, if that shy smile appears in front of me, I’ll be vulnerable.

          But yes, if that grateful smile appears in front of me, I will be vulnerable.

          But yes, if that arrogant smile appears in front of me, I’ll be vulnerable.

          But yes, if that wicked smile appears in front of me, I will be vulnerable.

          But yes, if that victorious smile appears in front of me, I will be vulnerable.

          A moment ago it got melodramatic, so it should be added that after all, he is an ordinary clown 🙂 And his imaginary problems, smile, belching and blowing winds should not matter to me in the slightest, ha ha ha. Although it is laughter combined with howling despair.

          I’m turning him off at the moment. Just like he does me. And I’m going to do something else.

          Greetings Wendy, and have a nice day/evening (depending on when HG lets the comments pass). And I wish you a lot… smile. Your, my, OUR smile 🙂

          1. Wendy says:

            Joa! I’m laughing and crying all at the same time reading this. That was really touching! It’s so true I felt it.

            Damn that wonderful, horrible man and his beautiful/evil smile! He was both a prince and a clown!

            He is a wounded child inside his narcissist shell. I see the little boy with that precious smile but I also see the contorted face of a tortured soul.

            I’ll remember it all and will grow from it and heal. We all will!

            Thank you Joa, I needed that laugh and cry!

            Hugs 🤗 💕

          2. Joa says:

            That’s what Wendy, you wrote it beautifully!

          3. wensical says:


    2. A Victor says:

      Hi Jasmin, I had the same experience, I couldn’t do a successful silent treatment on him because I would forget and start taking to him! I just remember being so mad sometimes and just stamping my foot or throwing my fists down at my sides, and then he’d just somehow get past that, but never with an apology, it was usually “understanding” . Or humor sometimes.

      1. Jasmin says:

        Hi AV!

        I think that’s the difference. We may do a silent treatment but we aren’t good at it, so they make their way through it easily.
        They are unshakeable and you can’t make the silent treatment end. It end when you get painted white again.

        I’m giggling now because I remember a few times I tried to play on the sexual seduction card, putting on a short dress, picking up something from the floor.. 😂 It didn’t work 🙈

        1. A Victor says:

          Haha, Jasmin, thank you for that giggle! Yes, it only works if they want it to!

          To answer your question below, yes, I had stuffed my feelings as a child so many were dulled, to my recognition of them at least, until more recently. I did seem to be more aware of the negative ones, taking on the problems in the marriage, as we do, as he wanted me to. But feelings of elation we’re not there, it was more a sense of relief at finding someone seemingly nicer than my parents.

          1. Bubbles says:

            Dearest A Victor,
            Having a narc parent who is emotionally unavailable, basically stuffs us up for life!
            I know it did me (I was abandoned by both of mine)
            Luv Bubbles xx 😘

          2. A Victor says:

            Dear Bubbles, thank you! I’m so sorry to hear that, that you were abandoned. Maybe for the best if they were narcs? I always wished my mom would leave! But, okay, we will have residual effects, this is good to know, and therefore not fight it. No need to waste the energy on that. Like Leela has said, scars that we grow scar tissue over, never healed perfectly but we can learn to live with it. Thank you sweet lady!! 💕

          3. Jasmin says:

            Thank you for sharing AV.
            I’m sorry to hear that, but glad that you are getting in contact with your feelings resently. ❤

          4. Bubbles says:

            Dearest A Victor,
            Thank you lovely one 😊
            Scars are a sign you’ve a survivor and won the battles
            If it’s at all reassuring, I still have my mum in my life, she continues with her narcy antics everyday. It doesn’t affect me. I’m a tough nut to crack now 🌰

            You are definitely healing those wounds here AV, crossing that emotional sea and kicking those sharks along the way ….congratulations
            Just keep kicking 🐋 and adding a bit more salt to any open wounds
            I’ve gone thru heaps …… of salt that is 🤣😂🤣
            Luv Bubbles xx 😘

          5. Bubbles says:

            Dearest A Victor,
            Oops a daisy 😱
            What I meant to say was, just keep kicking those sharks and try NOT add any more salt to open wounds

            Reminder to self ……I do my best work at night with a 🍷and not early in the morning before ☕️
            Luv Bubbles xx 😘

        2. BC30 says:

          Ah yes, the fuel matrix.

          “you can’t make the silent treatment end. It end when you get painted white again”

          I wonder how many times the levers shifted and the IPPS became black and I was painted white. See saw up and down and to and fro.

          I was painted white less often when the new IPSS fell victim.

      2. Wendy says:

        Hi AV, I can relate to what you felt. I would be so angry but he would in an instant flash that beautiful smile and we would hold a gaze then I would sometimes just burst into laughter. We both would. This is the kind of interaction that was endearing to me even though the start of the argument was something so stupid on his part or very serious on mine such as finding a woman’s number on his phone or finding his Match.com account up and running! But. Even in those serious moments of “catching” his ass he still managed to manipulate/gaslight me in this way and of course I had to find a way to rationalize what he was doing. It’s unbelievable looking back on it how much I allowed him to get away with!

        1. A Victor says:

          Oh yes, Wendy, that’s it exactly! I found items at his place, phone stuff etc. I even called a woman once, I knew who she was and both of them lied…still I stayed with him. The addiction is not something to mess with, very real, best not to get ensnared to begin with.

          1. wensical says:

            AV. Yes I know! I did the same thing. Confronted three women he was talking to! Looking back I feel foolish and all the while he was saturated in all that triangulation fuel he was getting from all of us! 🤦‍♀️

    3. k mac says:

      I totally sympathize Jasmin. I would get so mad at myself. How could I forget how horrible I felt 10 minutes ago. He had the ability to make me feel worse then I have ever felt in my entire life. He also possessed the power to make me feel the most wonderful I have ever felt. The pain he inflicted on me could only be alleviated be him. It didn’t matter if I was left in that state for 10 minutes or 2 weeks. Your right it isn’t fair.

      1. A Victor says:

        K Mac, thank you for this comment, it has made me realize that I have had a skewed perception of the pain inflicted by my exes, both of them, the enormity of the pain, dulled by the misunderstanding and dulling of my feelings in general. More to unravel, but a new piece to help with it, thank you.

        1. A Victor says:

          Oh yes, and possibly also why the Golden Period didn’t put me as over the top as it might have someone who was more in touch with their feelings. Also good food for thought, thank you again.

          1. Jasmin says:

            Just curious,
            Do you think that you being ‘less in touch with your feelings’ hade to do with utter circumstances?

      2. Jasmin says:

        Yes, you are right! They have the ability to make you feel horrible and the most wonderful. When they give a respite you forget about everything and get completly wrapped up in how lovely you feel at the moment!

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