Tell Me What You Are Thinking

 

TELL-ME-WHAT-YOU-ARE-THINKING

You may remember Sophie who was one of my ex-girlfriends. She was a happy-go-lucky kind of person and loved dashing from person to person wishing them well. She was like a machine spewing out good wishes, pleasantries and compliments.

“You look really well,you have lost weight.”

“That skirt really suits you.”

“I heard you recently got married, you must be really happy. That’s really wonderful.”

“Hey great news on that new job. I am really pleased for you.”

“You look so content, I am really happy for you.”

She was really, really good natured. Oh and she used really a lot. There was not a bad bone in Sophie’s body and she always saw the good side of everything. I was by turns fascinated by how she managed it and also hugely attracted by her capacity to find victory from the jaws of defeat.

“He’s grumpy because he is tired, he works very hard you know.”

“I guess he didn’t have time to speak to me today, he has really huge responsibilities. He really has.”

“I don’t mind that he forgot my birthday, I am just really pleased to be with him, that’s a good enough present for me.”

“I haven’t heard from him so I guess he is out with his friends. It is really good to spend time with other people now and again, it keeps things really fresh.”

She just skipped along merrily handing out kindness and warmth as if that was all she was programmed to do. I reached this conclusion because behind the permanent smile, the twinkling eyes and elated expression she wore there really was not a lot else. She had no interest in politics, current affairs, sport, history, literature and so on. She would listen patiently if I railed against the latest proposals concerning immigration nodding and smiling and when I asked her what she thought she would say,

“Oh all of that is for people really clever. It’s not for me.”

She was never dismissive in the sense of pouring scorn on it just because she was not interested or she did not understand. No, she just had no interest because she felt it was beyond her, not something she had to be concerned about. She was concerned with just one thing ; skipping around like some modern day fairy sprinkling goodness everywhere. I do think she lacked much in the way of her own opinions and thoughts because she usually deflected any attempt to get her to critique something with a self-effacing comment like the one above. She never seemed to be caught in a moment of contemplation. She never seemed to pause for thought. She would just ask what I thought. She did this repeatedly. She was always concerned to know what I was thinking about.

“What’s on your mind?”

“Penny for your thoughts?”

“What are you thinking?”

“Where is your mind today?”

“What’s going on upstairs?”

Repeatedly throughout the day, as  we sat watching television, after we had made love, during dinner, going for a walk, when I was shaving and so on. Always wanting to know what I was thinking. So I told her. From the mundane (“This shaving gel is not as good as the last lot I bought”) through to the loving (“I was just thinking how wonderful it is being with you”) to the scathing (“I was just wondering why on earth I am with such an empty-headed woman as you”). That was all she wanted to know. What was I thinking? On and on she would go, asking and asking and no matter what I said, be it compliment or nasty comment or ephemera she would smile and give a satisfied nod.

All of this made her very attractive to someone like me at the outset as she was a real high volume fuel generator but once that wore thin, it was rather difficult to denigrate her so she would react the way that I wanted. She put me in mind of that toy the Weeble. The catchphrase surrounding the Weeble was “Weebles wobble but they don’t fall down.”Sophie was like that. I would be horrible to her and she maintained a smile (although I thought or at least hoped she was dying inside) and made an excuse and found a rationale for my unpleasantness. Insults just seemed to bounce off her. Smashing plates and ornaments caused her to stand and watch with a slightly perplexed look on her face before she tidied the pieces away. She did not cry or show fear. I would sit and flirt with other women online and comment to Sophie about how attractive they were. She would look over and agree with my comments and go on to compliment how white their teeth were or how she liked their hairstyle. If I wandered in during the middle of the morning she would just ask how my night had gone. I am sure she could smell other women on me but she did not seem to react. It was as if she was wrapped in this coating of pleasantness that was impervious to any nastiness thrown at her. She would either respond with a soothing comment, make an excuse for what I had said or done or just not react and get on with her day. I used to wonder if she had me worked out and this was her way of negating me. How had she done this? Who had put her on to this strategy?

One weekend she was staying with me at my house and I returned earlier than she expected. She had not heard me come in (it is often said that I manage to move around with a strange ability to be very quiet, popping up without warning) and I could hear her talking in the bedroom. I crept closer and through the slightly ajar door I realised she was talking to herself.

“Must not think, do not think Sophie. Just keep doing. Smile and shine, shine and smile. Keep going forward. Don’t think about it. We know what happens when you think about it. Bad things happen but we don’t do bad things do we? No. Only good things. I don’t do the thinking, he does. I need to know what he is thinking and then I can make him happy, it is only fair, he deserves it doesn’t he? Don’t think Sophie, must not do that, come on, you can do this, you always do. Do it don’t daydream.”

I stole away and then realised what I needed to do to break her.

After that, whenever she asked me what was I thinking about, I would respond by saying “Nothing.” She would look puzzled and ask again. I would repeat my answer. She then would look slightly anxious. I would turn to her and ask

“What are youthinking about”

She would try and deflect my question by asking me again or changing the subject but now I knew how to get to her. I would never tell her what I was thinking and instead pursue her to tell me what was going on inside that sugary head of hers. It worked. She became upset, angry, frustrated and anxious so I kept it going and going and going. I have no idea why it troubled her so much. Her eyes filled with panic when I kept saying nothing and then she seemed to shrink, her light dimming as I asked her about what she was really thinking. She could not cope with it. I did not work out what it was about thinking that caused her so much consternation and I did not care, all that mattered to me was being able to provoke her into giving me that emotional reaction. It seemed that too much thinking on her part was a dangerous thing indeed. The important thing was that I had worked out how to provoke the provision of negative fuel. Makes you think doesn’t it?

54 thoughts on “Tell Me What You Are Thinking

  1. Chihuahuamum says:

    One of my favorites. I can really empathise with Sophie. I can see how some would be annoyed by her or even view her as phoney. I think she was a people pleaser as a result of ptsd or anxiety. She was so afraid of conflict or rocking the boat. She wanted the spotlight on others to take away from it being on her. I also think she dissassociated from anything stressful as a survival mechanism. She striked me as hanging on by a thread 🙁
    On the flipside i could see how this would make a narcissist uncomfortable always being asked questions because that is THEIR tactic! They do all the research to gain control.

  2. Joa says:

    She must have suffered a lot.

    She completely covered herself. She disappeared…

    I hope she has finally found herself 🙂

  3. njfilly says:

    I have often seen a similar issue, which I will explain as follows: If I were to meet a person from a different country and culture (Mr. Smith) and as soon as we meet I say/do something that might be considered impolite or even offensive within Mr. Smith’s country, (but I have no idea about this because we have just met, and even if I know what country/culture Mr. Smith comes from, I am not familiar with all of those customs) should Mr. Smith be offended? In my opinion, he should not be, and for Mr. Smith to be offended is offensive to me (If I were to be offended – but I am not easily offended so it doesn’t necessarily apply to me). It is offensive (again, if I were to be offended) that immediately upon meeting a person I am given no patience, consideration or leeway due to my ignorance of that person, and I am expected to know all their cultural expectations, and personal boundaries, so that I don’t accidentally step on their delicate toes, in order to simply interact with this person. That we can’t simply meet and try to connect in a friendly manner based upon our similarities-and we can discuss or discern our differences, and preferences for interaction later (assuming it is a general friendly meeting with no outward ill intent). No wonder there are so many culture clashes, and we can’t seem to get along.

  4. njfilly says:

    Absolutely, I disagree that asking somebody what they are thinking is a personal question that should not be asked. It depends on the relationship between the people, and in the case of HG Tudor and Sophie, they were in an intimate relationship and had previously shared their thoughts, so this type of question is appropriate, if not expected.
    Witch, are you joking when you say to ask what a person is thinking is a violation? It appears you may be joking, but I am going to post my thoughts anyway as if you are serious.
    Your comment relates to two of my pet peeves. In this instance it blends into one; when people are easily offended, and when people consider random questions of interest to be personal questions. Here you have taken it a step beyond feeling offended in that you view it as a violation, which is extreme, in my opinion. I acknowledge that you did not use the word “offended”, but you believe the question to be too personal, it is nobody’s business to be asking that, and you feel violated by the question, which I will condense and define to feeling offended. How do you ever interact with any other human being if you feel violated so easily?
    Firstly, any question I ask another person could potentially be viewed as a personal question, since I am asking for that person’s thoughts or opinions on a matter (which are personal to them) or about their life; and whether business or personal, it is their own life, so it is part of their “personhood” and is personal to them.
    I can ask the following questions of a friend or stranger, simply because I am interested in that person, to start a conversation, I may want to hear another’s opinion on an issue, or even perhaps as a follow-up to previous known information: How are you? What did you do last night? What do you think about A, B, or C? How is your relationship with your significant other going? What are you thinking? Etc. Technically, these are all personal questions. It is not possible to interact on an intimate level with another human without personal questions. What questions would you consider acceptable, or not to be a violation of your privacy? More importantly, how do you expect people to know that in advance?
    In the past I have asked my mother; “How are Stan and Elise?” She would respond, “I don’t know, I don’t like to pry” or “I don’t like to ask personal questions.” This confuses me because I am only asking a general question about people I know, and we are already involved in each other’s lives. Why is this considered so personal? I didn’t ask “what position did Stan fuck Elise last night?” Also, these people discuss themselves, their lives, and their relationship with me, so this is already part of the conversations we regularly have, but to ask a question about it is too personal? Similar to your belief that to ask what you are thinking is too personal, yet I assume in the past you have shared some of your thoughts with the very people who now ask you what you are thinking. Perhaps you deem it acceptable only when you share it, and not when you are asked. Perhaps your boundaries are flexible based upon your mood or your relationship to the other party. How do you expect people to know that in advance?
    I find it interesting, as well as strange, that sometimes people expect their friends, family, and acquaintances, as well as random strangers, to know all their boundaries about any given topic, sometimes immediately upon meeting them. They expect people to know what questions are considered too personal to be asked. Those are your boundaries, and it is your responsibility to enforce them. It is not other people’s responsibility to know what your boundaries may be in advance (if that were even possible) particularly if your boundaries are flexible and change at will. Don’t place the “burden” for your boundaries onto others. That they should not have asked it, and they should know you consider that question too personal to be asked. You will be disappointed. Take responsibility for your own preferences, and boundaries, and simply enforce the boundary and state, “I would rather not answer that,” “I find that question to be too personal,” or something similar, or lie as you said you do. It’s likely the question was asked innocently in order to start conversation, to get your opinion, or other random reason as stated above, rather than openly trying to be offensive, insulting or rude, such as, “What thoughts are in that empty head of yours?”, “What stupid thing are you thinking about now?”, or something similar. Your thoughts are certainly your own, and you have a right to keep it that way. Simply because you must act to enforce that right does not mean the other person has intentionally trespassed on your right. They had no idea a boundary was there. I wouldn’t know that either. I often ask my intimate partners “what are you thinking” because I want to know, and I am interested in them and their thoughts. How else would I find out? Rather than feeling violated perhaps you should feel flattered somebody has taken an interest in your thoughts to the point of outwardly asking. Would you prefer they not care if you even existed? Most likely you would prefer some unknown middle ground. You “think” and/or “believe” the question “What are you thinking” is too personal, yet at the same time expect people to know your “thoughts” and “beliefs” about the question so as not to ask it! Seems incongruous to me, as well as confusing. The scenario also seems a bit backwards. You have the right to your privacy, and your thoughts and feelings, but the responsibility for all of them is your own, not other people’s. A question cannot violate you. If you feel it is violating, that is your burden and responsibility to control the feeling, and set the boundary that you do not want to answer that question, so that you are not violated.
    Now this is not directed at you Witch, but in my opinion, people who are easily offended have a grandiose view of themselves. How dare other human beings not know their personal boundaries and emotional triggers in order not to upset them! How dare people do/say/ask such-and-such thing that now has them upset and forces them to assert themselves and their boundaries in such a way that they (a) don’t want to do; (b) are too lazy to do, or (c) may be uncomfortable doing-which assertion may mean to simply politely decline to answer. (To be clear; assertion and aggression are different).
    To be easily offended is to be weak in setting your own boundaries, which you do not want to do, so you expect others to do it for you, and somehow recognize your unseen/unspoken boundaries, and to always know them in advance.
    To be easily offended is to have a closed mind to the way other people think, believe, and interact.
    To be easily offended is to expect others (even strangers) to know you intimately and act accordingly, which how could they? They can’t ask you what you think because you may deem it too personal a question and become offended!
    I offer my opinions on these scenarios regardless of who may be offended by them. I feel very strongly about these pet peeves, hence the length of my comment.

    1. A Victor says:

      NJFilly, your comment gave me a lot to consider. I agree, it is up to me to set the boundaries i am comfortable with and also to protect my own thoughts. I had bit considered that i might be thinking in a grandiose manner of I expect others to know my boundaries. Thank you, very eye opening. Maybe this will help me learn to set boundaries and be more comfortable about doing so.

      1. A Victor says:

        And taking offense too easily also.

      2. njfilly says:

        Hi AV,

        Thank you for your reply. I’m flattered you found something valuable in my comment. I’m also impressed you were able to take another perspective into consideration without becoming defensive. I think I need to be more like you in that regard. I will try to do this in the future.

        I think the people who are constantly insulted and offended are most likely narcissists.

        Great interview, by the way!

        1. A Victor says:

          Hi NJFilly,

          You are welcome, thank you for writing your comment.

          Please allow me to apologize for the multiple errors in my comment. That happens on my phone and I swear it sometimes changes things after I’ve pressed send. It’s amazing to me that you could understand some parts!

          I am coming from a vantage point of defensive, having felt the need all my life to have my guard up at questions. They were so often used against me either immediately or some time later. As a result, I have been learning that I have been overly sensitive. And I am very much trying to learn how people who have had “normal” lives respond, and to filter things through that new response as I put my defensiveness on the back burner. It will always be there, and I’m sure quick to be pulled out if something seems to warrant it, but I can control it and really want to get beyond my defensive and sensitive first reaction. So I really appreciated your comment as a different perspective to look into.

          I agree that narcs are the most reactive to their “sensitivities”, and likely it happens with them much more frequently as well. I suppose it is useful for acquiring the prime aims. I would likely often hide my sensitivities so as to not draw attention, and I believe it is less frequent for me, except when dealing with a narcissist who of course is likely intentionally trying to make something happen, haha.

          Thank you for the compliment on the interview, it was fun, HG is a great interviewer! He made it easy.

          1. njfilly says:

            Hi AV,

            No problem about the errors.

            I understand being defensive, although not necessarily from your vantage point. I lived in a state of defense my entire life, but not from questions, just outward belittlement. There were no questions. There was no desire to know anything, no matter what the intent may have been behind it. I have an internal need to question and to know things.

            I have no experience with normal. Will somebody please explain to me what that means?

          2. A Victor says:

            Hi NJFilly,

            Yes, I had the repeated belittlement also. The questions asked were not ones from a place of care or concern, they were more along the lines of, “What about this A-? Couldn’t we bring that up to an A next time?” pulled from among the A’s and A+’s. Or “Who did this?!” with no opportunity to actually be heard, it was going downhill from there no matter what I said at that point. Stuff like that. So I had questions posed but it was always dangerous, and part of the belittlement. I am like you, an internal need to question and know, very curious about life.

            I have only the experience of normal that I have learned through my children, they’ve taught me a great deal about relating, which I’m happy for but sad at the same time, I should have been the one doing the teaching. One thing I’ve learned is that they move at a slower pace in a good relationship, if that makes sense. I’ve always been hurried, I was programmed to be from the start, narcs want that I think. In a healthy relationship, there is not that pressure. I have to be careful about trying to impose that pace on my kids every so often, when I get in a situation where I’m a little uncomfortable it can happen. I have learned to watch for cues from them that I’m doing this and then I know to pull back and get myself into a better place before continuing. I have been doing it for a long time but since finding narcsite, I have learned the why’s around it and it has become more intentional. As an empath raised with two narcs, I feel I really don’t get this but I realized when my oldest was very young that she did things more naturally and it allowed my empathic nature felt safe with her and I allowed myself to be myself with her and my other kids as they came along, so I’ve been learning in reverse so to speak. Just having time to think is a game changer, whenever my husband came home, the house was different, I think it relates at least somewhat to this, his presence sped everything up and I was immediately more tense again. I’ve been tense most of my life but the level of tension ebbs and flows. Being here and learning has helped ease my tension a lot though living with my mom, there is still some there always. I don’t know if this answers your question at all, narcs just suck, and what they do to us and cause in us is horrible.

          3. A Victor says:

            Oh yes, also since learning from my kids, I have found about two friends that I also feel I have “normal”, ie non-defensive friendships with, in 30 years! It is not so with most people and sometimes it is for a while until they are hurtful to me in some way, then the walls go right up. I am trying currently to learn to talk to these people instead of shutting them out, but it’s terrifying. But an important piece for me, I think. And from their response, I can tell if i want to keep the wall up or not. Really rare to find someone who doesn’t cause this, I treasure those people most of all.

    2. Witch says:

      @Nfily
      I was serious about how the question makes me feel. I understand that not everyone feels the same way I do and I probably didn’t make that clear by saying “it’s a violation.”
      It makes ME feel uncomfortable. Other people might appreciate being randomly asked that question. I feel put on the spot.
      You’re right that it’s down to that person to say they don’t like the question, if they don’t, which I do. I don’t expect people to automatically know.
      Now in the case of Sophie… she didn’t want to be asked that question herself (possibly for different reasons) but nonetheless it also made her feel uncomfortable yet she expected to be humoured when she asked.

      1. njfilly says:

        Hi Witch,
        Thank you for your response. I understand that you may feel put on the spot by that question, and you have a right to your feelings, and that is a good point that Sophie expected an answer but didn’t want to answer herself. I am not saying there is any issue with a person not wanting to answer the question, I have an issue with saying the question itself is a violation. I think I did not understand your using such a harsh word as calling the question a violation, rather than saying the question made you feel uncomfortable. I interpreted that to mean you felt somewhat traumatized by being asked.
        If I were to ask a person “what are you thinking” and they answer in ANY way other than to enforce their own boundaries and say “I don’t want to answer that” if that is how they feel, well I did not violate them by asking the question. They violated themselves with their own answer. Being a person who is often asking the questions I don’t agree I am violating anybody by asking.
        There are people who want to be asked. They are unseen, and unheard and want somebody to take an interest in them and their thoughts, and to notice them. I don’t think we should ever stop asking this question. I didn’t understand your need to want to stop the question when you have complete control over the answer.

        1. Joa says:

          njfilly, I agree with every word you say.

          Maybe because, I am a person, who can suddenly ask a very personal and deeply reaching question, even to newly met people, with whom we just start “sniff each other”. If I see hesitation (sometimes there are very blocked people), I explain the reasons for asking this question or tell, what it looks like on my part.

          It is very rare, that someone does not answer. And if even – I know, that he will do it a little later, when we get to know each other better.

          —————–

          I like, it when people reach deep inside me and ask me questions. It “binds us” and I love bonding and this kind of closeness with people 🙂 I have nothing to hide. I’m honest about the good and bad things inside me. I can pull out the worst things I have done (there are some) if I think, they can help someone with something.

          I like to share. Also myself. If anyone wants – please, ha ha ha 🙂 I am, and I am for free, ha ha ha 🙂

          And if I do not want to say something, I simply inform about it – in such a way as not to offend the questioner. Sometimes I reply later. Sometimes I definitely change the subject.

          There are no problems with that.

          —————–

          Witch – orgy – you can perfectly shut someone’s mouth with it, if you don’t want him to drill 🙂 And you can also have a laugh together, by 180 degrees reversing the role of the questioner and answering person 🙂

      2. njfilly says:

        Hi again, Witch.

        I don’t want to beat this subject to death, but I just want to mention something. I should not have said that if you feel violated or even traumatized by a question that it is extreme. You are entitled to feel whatever you feel, and sometimes we can’t even help the way we feel based upon whatever traumatized us in our past, so I apologize for that. I am trying to understand.

        I assume this issue bothers me and is a pet peeve because I am usually the questioner. I question everything. Absolutely everything. Even issues that people feel should no longer be questioned. My questions get deeper and evolve as I gain more knowledge on something. I understand I can probably start becoming annoying with my constant questioning.

    3. jasmin says:

      Yes, and if my thoughts happen to be private or not of course depends what I am thinking about. Sometimes they are private and other times they are not. If private it’s up to me to tell. The other person can’t know!

    4. Leigh says:

      Hi NJFilly,
      I can only speak for myself here but I think there needs to be some context. I can see both sides. If its someone who I know cares about me, then I would be ok with them asking. If its some random person asking me, then I will lie or blow them off some how. Now add into the mix our knowledge of narcissism and if a narcissist asks me what I’m thinking, then I agree 100% that its a violation. The narcissist doesn’t give a rat’s ass about us and its only done to get information to use at a later date. There may all be times when I don’t want to share my thoughts with anyone, including the people that care about me or I care about. That’s my right also.

      For me, I don’t want to pry so I will often say:

      Do you mind sharing?
      If I may ask?
      If you ever want to talk, I’m here.
      If I’m being too nosy, you can tell me to mind my business.

      This way you’re showing them that you are there for them but on their terms.

      At least, that’s how I view it.

      Although, I will say this, I do agree that how do we get to now people if we don’t ask those intimate questions.

      1. A Victor says:

        Great points Leigh, it is about the context, who’s asking etc, thanks.

      2. njfilly says:

        Hi Leigh,
        Thank you for your comment. I have so much to say about it, I will try to explain my perspective. I think you may be missing my point. I understand, and agree, that sometimes we are okay with sharing personal information and sometimes not, depending on our own moods as well as who is asking. We all have the right to our own thoughts, privacy, and opinions, as well as to determine what we will reveal about ourselves, and to whom. The burden of knowing that and enforcing that boundary is on the questionee, not the questioner.
        With regard to the following from your comment:
        “For me, I don’t want to pry so I will often say:
        Do you mind sharing?
        If I may ask?
        If you ever want to talk, I’m here.
        If I’m being too nosy, you can tell me to mind my business.”

        Is this an adult I am speaking to? I may or may not go to these lengths. I usually just assume in advance that they will not answer if they feel uncomfortable doing so. If this is a friend and I am trying to help I may ask “Do you want to talk about it?” which is easier for some people to say no, and this is the issue. That some people are not able to deflect the question “what are you thinking” even if they truly don’t want to answer it, so again as stated in my original comment, they are not able to enforce their own boundary so they expect (or possibly hope for) other people to enforce it for them.
        Personally, I think the question “what are you thinking” is the same as “how are you”. It is just a conversation starter. A doorway to communication and understanding that the other party has the ability (and obligation for themselves) to slam shut, or swing wide open and let loose with their thoughts, depending on their own needs. When I ask that question, I don’t usually expect a person’s deepest, darkest secret to be the answer. I expect it to flow however they want it to come out.
        I don’t consider it prying to ask a question. I view it that I am speaking to an adult who should have enough self-control to answer only in a way that is comfortable to them, which way I would have no way of knowing in advance, nor is it my responsibility to control their answer for them. This goes back to my original comment about what is deemed a personal question. Any question you pose to another individual can be deemed as personal, so it is up to the other person to control their responses and decide if it is too personal to answer. As an example, I think it may be generally believed that to ask about a person’s salary is a personal question, yet somewhere there is a person who would love to be asked that so they can show off about their earning power. Nothing is really universal, as there are so many differing perspectives. Also, the question “What are you thinking” as well as “What is on your mind” is an open-ended question (In reality, all questions are) that you can respond with anything from mind your own business to spilling your guts.
        I know I often (but not always) come across a bit blunt, and sometimes even insensitive, and I have been told this in the past. I am not outwardly trying to be insensitive; this is just my communication style. Knowing this I will often (but not always) attempt to soften my approach in communication. It is my belief that if I have made an attempt to soften, the other party needs to make an attempt to toughen. This way we can meet in the middle because that is where understanding is found.
        I can’t even soften myself enough, or make myself small and non-confrontational enough for some sensitive people for them to feel comfortable with what I have to say, or to even have a discussion. If a person is too sensitive perhaps they have some personal issues they need to overcome before an adult conversation can even be had. I say this as a person who has overcome many issues from my past, and I have more to go. One of my issues revolving around communication and this may be why I might be considered blunt-if I am. I’m really not sure, because that is also a matter of perspective. I just like to be succinct in what I say.
        I have certain opinions that are not well received. There is no way to soften them enough for certain people. The meaning gets diluted, and it is not worthwhile. Sometimes, it is not the delivery that is really the issue but the opinion itself, so why bother trying to soften it.
        You are certainly entitled to disagree with me. I just wanted to make sure you are clear on the point I was making so that it was a true disagreement rather than a misunderstanding. Either way, it’s all good. Just voicing my opinion.

        1. Leigh says:

          Hi NJFilly, I actually agree with you. I’m very similar. I’m blunt and often will speak my mind. I will also delve deeper. I’ve learned though, that not everyone is ok with that so now that I’m older, I’ll ask first.

          My point was that when you are dealing with a narcissist, they aren’t asking you because they care. They are asking you to gather information. In that respect, I agree with Witch that it is a violation.

          1. njfilly says:

            Hi Leigh,

            Yes, I understand your point.

            Sometimes blunt is just easier. I find it very annoying to have to evaluate everything I want to say for potential offenses first. It’s almost an impossible endeavor anyway.

            I’m not sure if I have gotten softer or tougher with age. In some ways, I have become both.

          2. A Victor says:

            This is where it comes back to determining if the person asking the question is a narcissist or not, this changes the entire situation, the lens we view it through.

        2. NarcAngel says:

          NJF

          I concur with the majority of your comment. A question is no more than that. The recipient is in full control of how the interest is received (complimentary or invasive) and how it is handled. Where one is unsure with regard to intent of the question and genuinely wants to communicate, there is always clarification to be obtained. In fact, a response might be: “why do you ask”? As you rightly point out – there are different communication styles. There are comments and questions posed in both lengthy and flowery paragraphs constructed in hopes of causing no offence (I generally and honestly find them tiring), as well as those that are direct and concise. Same question/comment just different delivery. It is interesting to see the different ways they are received and responded to. I have found in some cases the response to be an emotional reaction to WHO posed the question/comment rather than the question/comment itself. Again, all within the control of the recipient and indicative of whether or not they want to actually communicate. Questions (to me) merely indicate interest, and I am generally neither offended by them nor feel obligated to answer depending on what I perceive to be the intent and my willingness to determine that. How sad to refrain from expressing interest and opening up to discussion and learning lest we offend.

          1. njfilly says:

            Hi NA,

            I agree with you that it is tiring trying to communicate without causing offense, on both the speaking and listening end. I also agree that sometimes there is a reaction based on “who” is speaking, and also “how” they are speaking, rather than primarily on “what” is being said. As I mentioned earlier people simply don’t like what is being said so instead they try to alter “how” it is being said. Although some people believe stating “No offense” before speaking is a license to offend. I’m done trying not to offend. No more caveats from me when I speak.

            I do notice you have a blunt/succinct conversation style. Personally I have no problem with it.

            I posted a meme on my facebook page once that read “Half of my problems are caused by my tone of voice and sarcasm. Everyone thinks I’m either mad, arguing, or just an asshole while actually, I’m just talking”. It’s true. I can be a bit sarcastic at times. I supposed that’s a passive aggressive behavior. I can be actively aggressive as well, so I even it out!

            People can be so difficult. This is why I prefer animals.

  5. StrongerWendy says:

    I believe HG said he’s 6 foot 1, correct?

    1. Truthseeker6157 says:

      Stronger Wendy,

      Yes, I believe that is correct.

      1. Joa says:

        Same increase as N1.

        With N2, I had to stop wearing high heels 🙂

  6. Witch says:

    “ Smashing plates and ornaments caused her to stand and watch with a slightly perplexed look on her face before she tidied the pieces away.”

    It’s not going to be appreciated but I have to come back and say this because it’s eating at me… HG I hope you don’t behave this way anymore at your cretaceous age… not even because of harm but because of vanity… it’s not a good look, something Meghan Markle would do… a 6”2 man throwing objects in front of a woman, nah! 🤣

    1. Joa says:

      Heh, N1 threw at me a plate with dinner.

      Very humiliating.

      I packed in 5 minutes and returned to my house immediately.

      (I always leave a way back – a car, a house. Anyway… when I’m mad, I could walk even 50 km in a downpour).

      1. Witch says:

        @Joa

        It was pathetic on his part because he exposed himself as a typical common narcissist… unable to lead in way that garners genuine respect… unable to hold the fort… there are children who are more stoic and dependable

        N1 threw objects around on one occasion after I asked for an open relationship
        I thought the day had finally come when he would beat my arse but he didn’t

    2. BC30 says:

      🤣 thanks for the laugh.

  7. A Victor says:

    @Witch, Yes! I agree! Such an invasion! And very likely, if I share what’s going on, they’re going to regret asking.

  8. Witch says:

    I hate the question “what are you thinking?”
    Not because I’m trying not to think but because it’s an invasion of my privacy… I could be having an orgy in my mind
    This is why you should mind your business!
    I wouldn’t ask anyone that question either because I expect them to lie like I would

    1. Leigh says:

      @Witch, Ha! This made me laugh out loud! It never occurred to me that it’s none of their business and it’s an intrusion but it definitely is! Here I am trying to be polite and say, “Oh, nothing.” I should probably say, “Mind Your Business!”

      1. Witch says:

        @Leigh

        One of the narcs used to ask that question but eventually stopped because he wasn’t getting an honest answer out of me.
        For some people they might think it’s a good way to show interest but no, it’s a violation!

  9. Pam says:

    Bwhahahahahahaha this made me laugh. The little vamp did it again, didn’t she?

  10. Duchessbea says:

    HG, in all honesty, it is not so much what you are thinking that she wants to know, but more she is feeling off sync with you, out of alignment and she is trying to work out what it is that seems to be the issue. I would say she knows, or is beginning to know that something is off but she just can’t put her finger on what that something is.

  11. Pete says:

    So……where do you find women like that?

  12. Lucycita says:

    “She had no interest in politics, current affairs, sport, history, literature and so on” HG are you really being honest here? Hard to believe that anyone would be interested in nothing but say video games and/or fashion. There had to be 1 thing she was interested in or liked to talk about otherwise how could she have existed? What did she do for a living? If I were you every time she asked me my thoughts I’d tell her: my dear darling, if you want to know what I think, take your time, make an effort, don’t be lazy and try to read me. It takes time but I’m worth it… kiss kiss kiss

  13. Samantha says:

    Poor her! I would love to be a nicer, sparkly little thing like she was.

  14. Violetta says:

    So why did you get with her in the first place?

    She sounds incredibly annoying, blowing sunshine up people’s portholes, including her own, but how did she appear to you before she was painted black? Why would you bother with her, if she was so vapid?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      The Prime Aims. Naturally.

      1. Violetta says:

        You have successfully enlisted me in the smear campaign, because I really despise this one. Nice manipulation.

      2. Bubbles says:

        Dear Mr Tudor,
        What did Sophie do for a living ?

        1. HG Tudor says:

          Irritate me.

          1. Bubbles says:

            Dear Mr Tudor,
            It doesn’t take much to irritate a narcissist haha
            Luv Bubbles xx 😘

          2. HG Tudor says:

            That is correct.

  15. Pingback: Tell Me What You Are Thinking - Dark Triad Personality
  16. ThirstforKnowledge says:

    HG,
    Weren’t you at all perplexed about what she was saying? Most specifically the part where she said bad things happen? To me that makes me wonder if she had done something bad to someone in the past (like poison someone or stab someone)? I know that you certainly control virtually any situation but that would have given me pause at least momentarily as to what she meant by saying it.

    1. HG Tudor says:

      No, TFK, I realised the was referring to being a victim of bad behaviour and was seeking to dismissing as “bad things happen” in the way “sometimes it is stormy and your fence is blown down”. It was part of defending herself.

      1. WiserNow says:

        HG and TFK,
        I agree with HG – Sophie was adopting a ‘positive’ attitude in order to defend herself.

        Sometimes empaths adopt a certain attitude or behaviour to avoid a negative reaction from the narcissist they’re in a relationship with or to placate the narcissist.

        The adopted attitude or behaviour is something that probably started instinctively long ago during childhood as a result of the ‘original’ narcissist (i.e. a parent). To stay attached to the parent and as ‘safe’ as possible, Sophie then practiced the behaviour constantly over time until it became almost automatic, like a conditioned personality trait.

        There are clues in what Sophie said. For example, she said, “We know what happens when you think about it.” By saying “we…”, she is talking to herself and reminding herself, like a pep talk to herself to stay positive. She probably isn’t positive all the time – because she is human – and knows that to stay positive she must reassure herself. Also, “come on, you can do this. You always do.” Again, she is talking to herself and willing herself to focus on staying positive.

        My guess is Sophie wasn’t vapid or stupid or uninterested in other things. She was probably criticised or punished for being ‘bad’ in the past. The “bad things happen” is not likely to be actual bad things she did, but rather being punished for say, stating or thinking negative things or daydreaming. She then internalised the punishments and became self-critical about stating her ‘so-called’ negative thoughts.

        I think it’s actually sad when you think about it. She felt she could not be herself and could not think her naturally occurring thoughts. That’s how I see it anyway.

        1. Witch says:

          @wiser now

          I agree with much of what you said but I also think she didn’t know how to be herself because she didn’t have strong enough narc traits to assert herself. Even if she had an interest in something the self doubt and guilt would have immediately started creeping in and made her feel bad so she avoided it all together.
          She would have scored very highly in codependency on an empath detector for sure.

          1. WiserNow says:

            Hi Witch,
            That’s a good point. By constantly asking HG, “what are you thinking?”, she was making his thoughts more important than her own. It’s as though she was defining herself through him, which is what the CoDependent empath does, as HG explains.

            I can see how Sophie’s narc traits weren’t strong enough for her to assert herself. The need to focus on herself in a conversation caused her anxiety and frustration and she would work on avoiding it.

            Thanks for your comment Witch. Sorry for the late response. WordPress doesn’t give notifications a lot of the time and I just saw your reply today.

    2. Truthseeker6157 says:

      Thirst For Knowledge,

      I pondered the same thought myself. Imagining the scene where HG comes home and opens the kitchen cupboard door, only to find that everything is stacked neatly, alphabetically, labels facing outwards.

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