Category Archives: Devaluation

The Narcissist’s Twin Lines of Defence

THE NARCISSIST'STWIN LINESOF DEFENCE

In order to understand your narcissist opponent (and let’s not avoid recognising the fact that we regard you as our opponent) it is essential that you realise that we adopt two lines of defence. It is imperative that our kingdom remains intact, that our rule over you is not impeded, hindered or diminished in anyway. This means that we must always have control. By maintaining control, we are assured of achieving the provision of  The Prime Aims so we gain fuel (most importantly) , character traits and the residual benefits.

Imagine, if you will, a motor vehicle. This motor vehicle has a computer which controls the suspension of the vehicle, This computer makes thousands of calculations and adjustments every second so that the suspension alters to take into account holes in the road, rocks, rises, dips and any deviation. The consequence of these frequent and instantaneous adjustments is that the car itself never lurches, dips, rolls, leans or deviates. You could balance a glass of water on the dashboard and it would never spill. The car remains still and steady.

We are similar. We must always maintain control. We have to have control over our environment so that we know there will be no loss of fuel, no reduction in the elements of the construct, no destruction of our empire and the descent into oblivion. To ensure this control, just like ensuring the motor vehicle remains steady, we have to make repeated and frequent adjustments to cater for the vagaries of the environment. We must tackle the challenges, maintain the loyalty, head off the insurrection, put down the rebellions, stifle the dissent, maintain the discipline and whatever changes, alterations and differences occur, control must be maintained. It does not matter if our behaviour, when viewed from your perspective, is inconsistent, illogical, hypocritical, contradictory, abusive, absurd and so forth, so long as the control is maintained. That is what matters above all else. By keeping control, we gain what we need and we continue to exist as we require.

Any challenge to this control requires a defensive response from us and this comes in two distinct forms. We have a twin defence mechanism. The first line is Denial. The second line is Distract and Deflect.

Dealing with Denial. If you challenge us in some way, which therefore threatens our control, then our immediate response will be one of denial. Your challenge may be one which wounds us (therefore you can expect a response by way of ignited fury which encompasses the denial) or more likely, you will be providing us with Challenge Fuel. Thus, you will not be wounding us, you will be giving us fuel, but we not only want to provoke you into giving us more fuel but we also have to assert control and assert our superiority and denial achieves both.

Take such an exchange for example, V is the accusing victim and N is the denying narcissist.

V – “I saw you in a bar this evening, Lorenzo’s, and you were with another woman.”

N – “No, I wasn’t.”

V- “Yes you were, I saw you.”

N- “You could not have done, I was at work, I had a meeting run on, there was a new client and he needed the team and I to sort quite a few problems out for him.”

V – “Stop lying, I saw you with my own eyes.”

N- “Well you need new glasses because it was not me, you think you saw.”

V- “It was. I know what you look like for God’s sake. You were holding hands with a slim woman with long brown hair and she had a green blouse on.”

N – “It wasn’t me.”

V- “It was, stop lying. Just admit it, will you?”

N- “It was not me.”

V- “I saw you, I saw you with her.”

N- “You couldn’t have done. Like I said, I have been in work until now, Ring Tom, go on, he will confirm that I have.”

The narcissist maintains the denial. Challenge Fuel is being received as the victim is either frustrated, angry, hurt or upset. The words used, the tone, the facial expression and the body language all contribute to the provision of fuel. If the victim is the Intimate Partner Primary Source (“IPPS”) then the fuel will be of a high potency. The quantity of fuel delivered is so far low since the discussion has only lasted a minute or so, but the frequency is constant for that minute. The narcissist will continue to deny in order to maintain control and assert his superiority for the purposes of ‘putting down’ this challenge. If the victim keeps asserting the allegation, the narcissist will continue with the denial until the victim gives up with the assertion. The narcissist has fuel and has maintained (or regained) superiority.

Sometimes the first line of defence is all that is needed to maintain the defence of the narcissist’s realm. However, if the narcissist senses that the victim believes that they are gaining the upper hand and thus has in effect broken through the first line of defence of Denial, then the narcissist will move to deploy the second line of defence which is that of Distraction and Deflection.

This second line is vast, extensive and draws on a myriad of narcissistic manipulations. Some of them are subtle and insidious, others are blatant and rudimentary. Nevertheless, they fall under the banner of Distraction and Deflection.

Returning to the example above, the increasingly exasperated victim decides to play the ace card and produces a mobile ‘phone which contains footage of the narcissist with the mystery lady, holding hands and sharing a kiss. The victim plays the footage and the narcissist watches.

The Denial could be maintained and in some instances this does happen. For instance the narcissist will state

“That’s not me, that is someone else.”

however, the narcissist will observe that the victim is displaying the signs of gaining the upper hand. The words used, tone and expression will alter to denote that the victim believes that she has now won the argument and therefore the repeated denial is not going to enable the narcissist to maintain superiority. Yes, he may continue to draw fuel from the victim if the victim continues to respond in an exasperated or incredulous manner, but the superiority has to be achieved also.

Accordingly this is where the second line of defence is activated.

The Lesser may just grab the mobile phone and smash it. This is Deflection and Distraction. Admittedly, it will not win any awards for ingenuity but this is what such an action achieves on the part of the narcissist:-

  1. The evidence that supports the victim’s challenge to the narcissist’s superiority has gone. In the compartmentalised world of the narcissist if it is not there it does not exist AND moreover it NEVER existed, accordingly

V- “You smashed it because you know I am right.”

N- “About what?”

V- “You kissing that woman.”

N- “What woman?”

v – “The one on the video.”

N – “What video?”

V- “The one I just showed you.”

N- “No you didn’t.”

Note how the first line of the defence has been resurrected. The destruction of physical property (a manipulation, albeit a base one) was deployed as a Deflection and Distraction and then the narcissist, feeling that the challenge has been addressed, deals with the follow-up challenge from the victim by reverting to the first line again and thus engages in Denial.

Returning to what this act achieves for the narcissist

2. The response of the victim to this manipulation will provide fuel;

3. Superiority is maintained through this act.

How might the Mid-Range Narcissist respond to this escalation on the part of the victim? Denial only worked so far, thus the second line of defence is deployed.

N – “What the hell do you think you are playing at?”

V – “What do you mean?”

N- “Spying on me.”

V – “What? I’m not, I am showing you what you have done.”

N- “Yes you are, I am sick of you trying to control me, spying on me like this. And I am not the only one, John said to me only last week he thinks you are very controlling.”

V- “John thinks that? How do you work that one out?”

N- “Oh he is not the only one a few of my friends think it.”

The victim then gets sucked into justifying her own behaviour, trying to defend herself against the imaginary control she apparently exerts over the narcissist. The narcissist has deployed Blame-Shifting, Triangulation and Smearing as part of the second line of defence and it has worked. Fuel is being provided and the initial allegation about cheating has been left by the way side.

The Mid-Ranger could have Distracted and Deflected by walking off and engaging in a silent treatment (absent or present) or accusing the victim of having an affair (Blame Shifting, Labelling, Projection) and therefore all manner of different manipulations can form part of this second line of defence.

How about the Greater, how might he have responded to the production of this video evidence?

He may have adopted the approach of denial to begin with, however, there is a significant chance that the Greater will have either seen what the Victim had been doing, been tipped off by someone as to what the Victim has done or ascertained from the Victim’s demeanour that there is a potential ace to be produced. Accordingly, the Greater would have not bothered with Denial to begin with. His entire confidence in the efficacy of the second line of defence to this challenge means he can dispense with the first line. Thus, the conversation may have proceeded in this manner :-

V – “I saw you in a bar this evening, Lorenzo’s, and you were with another woman.”

N – “Did you, why didn’t you come in and say hello. I was going to call you. That is Jennifer, old friend of mine.”

V- “Oh, I see, you didn’t say you were meeting her.”

N – “Did I not, I think you will find that I did. I told you a week ago about catching up with her, I haven’t seen her in ages. You have met her before, do you remember? It was when we were at the box at the racing, for Ladies’ Day last summer. You had that delightful dress on, you know, the striking green one.”

Away goes the Greater and embarks on a monologue, drawing up details from the past (real or invented), showering compliments and distracting the victim from the thrust of their complaint. In effect the Greater may deploy a Word Salad to Deflect and Distract and thus gain fuel and maintain superiority. The Greater has a vast array of potential ways of deploying the second line of the defence. For instance he might say :-

“Oh that woman, she is obsessed with me. There’s nothing to worry about. Yes she kissed me, rather presumptuous of her but can you see how I broke it off. I didn’t want her causing a scene, she’s a bit of a looney, but you’ve nothing to worry about there. You aren’t going to let someone like her come between you and me are you?” (Blame Shifting, Smearing, Triangulation, Charm)

OR

“I kissed her, so what. If you kissed me more often, this would not happen. You might want to take notice and up your game or you will lose me.” (Threat, Blame-Shifting, Triangulation)

OR

“It really is nothing, she was just being rather zealous. You know people throw themselves at me, it is you that I want. Why else am I here with you and nobody else? Now, let me feel what a real kiss feels like, hmmm?” (Flattery, Charm, Triangulation)

OR

“I was recruiting her for that threesome you said you wanted, you do remember agreeing to that don’t you? Admittedly, you were a little tipsy but you did say you wanted to do it. She will be calling me at 9 o’clock, to come round, but I wanted you to myself of course before she joins us.” (Triangulation, Gas Lighting)

The Greater will invariably rely on his charm and self-confidence to assert superiority and head off the challenge, possibly switching to the issue of threats if required. Either way, the fuel is obtained and the Deflection and Distraction line of defence remains intact and superiority is maintained and thus control with it.

Denial is the first port of call for us to maintain control (though less so with the Greater) and then the range of manipulations from Gas Lighting, Threat, Word Salad, Silent Treatment, Bullying, Intimidation, Labelling and Triangulation and more besides form part of the second line of defence. We will embed Split Thinking, Volte Face, Hypocrisy, Contradiction within this second line in order to maintain control and keep control on an even keel. Such is the breadth and depth of this second line, you will not breach it and we will keep going until you are forced into a retreat, we are fuelled and we maintain that control that is paramount to us. This is why we do as we do.

 

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Rumplenarcskin

 

rumplenarcskin

Once there was a Lieutenant who was poor, but who had a beautiful empathic daughter. Now it happened that he had to go and speak to the NarcKing and in order to curry favour with the NarcKing and provide some residual benefits, the Lieutenant said to the king, “I have a daughter who can spin rubbish into mesmerising brilliance, for example, BS into golden periods.”

The NarcKing said to the Lieutenant, “That is a craft which pleases me well, if your daughter is as clever as you say, bring her tomorrow to the Palace of Lost Hope and I will put her to the test.”

And when the empathic daughter was brought to the NarcKing, he took her into a compartment which was quite full of BS, gave her a spinning-wheel and a reel and said,

“I don’t like using my energy, so I need you to spin this BS into golden periods which I can use over my ensnared subjects. If by tomorrow you have not spun all this BS into golden periods, you must be discarded and smeared.”

     Thereupon the NarcKing locked the empathic daughter in the compartment and left her to go and hoover the visiting Queen of Sheba. So sat the poor Lieutenant’s daughter and for the life of her could not tell what to do. She never told lies and was an honest person and thus she had no idea how BS could be spun into golden periods. She grew more and more frightened until at last she began to weep.

But all at once the door opened and in came a little man and he said, “Good evening Mistress Empath why on earth are you wasting all that delicious negative fuel on a room full of BS?”

“Alas,” answered the girl, “I have to spin this BS into golden periods and I do not know how to do it.”

“What will you give me if I do it for you?” asked the little man, rubbing his hands in anticipation.

“I have nothing but my admiration and appreciation to give you,” replied the Lieutenant’s daughter.

“That’ll do,” grinned the little man.

He seated himself in front of the wheel and whirr, whirr, whirr, the reel was full. He put on another reel and then another and so he went on until the morning spinning the BS until all that existed were reels of golden periods.

By daybreak the NarcKing was already there for he did not sleep much and when he saw all the golden periods he was delighted, but his dark heart became only more greedy. He had the Lieutenant’s daughter taken into another room full of BS which was much larger.

“Right, I have a banquet coming up and I cannot be arsed to trot out all my false anecdotes yet again, so I need you to spin some more golden periods for me to pull over the eyes and ears of everybody who is attending. This BS has been festering for time immemorial, blimey, if I knew how to, I would be embarrassed at some of its content. Get this lot into golden periods in the course of one night or I will discard you. smear you and malign hoover you repeatedly.” commanded the NarcKing.

    Dismayed the girl began to weep again and in an instant the little man had re-appeared in the room once again.

“Holy Toledo, are you mad? So much fuel and you are wasting it.”

“I am sorry but I blame myself for everything, that is just the way I am. I have to spin this roomful of BS into golden periods or I am going to have a torrid time of it from the king.”

“I see. What will you give me then if I do it for you?” asked the little man.

“I have nothing but I can only give you my appreciation and admiration again,” replied the girl.

“Nah, had plenty of that from you, it is boring and stale. Tell you what, I will sit and do the spinning and call you all the bad names in the world so you cry and then I will have your tears and misery.”

“Really? That seems a strange thing to do when I could be so gushing and appreciative for you. Honestly, I would always admire you, forever, you have been so kind to me.”

“Save it kid, turn on the waterworks or your ass belongs to the king,” declared the little man.

“Very well,” answered the girl.

Thus the little man set to work and as the girl wept and wailed, he chortled to himself as he worked his way through the A-Z of Devaluing Insults, calling her all manner of awful things. By dawn all the BS had become golden periods.

The NarcKing bowled up and rejoiced with the power sparking in his eyes at the sight of so many golden periods which he could dole out over unsuspecting victims. Still, it was not enough and he had the Lieutenant’s daughter taken into a massive room full of BS.

“Goodness me, who created all this BS?” asked the girl amazed that such a quantity could be accumulated.

“Have you never heard one of my speeches?” asked the NarcKing somewhat irked.

“Spin all of this into golden periods and do it in one night and if you succeed I shall make you my intimate partner primary source, er I mean wife.”

The NarcKing departed to malign hoover the residents of a nearby village and left the girl alone. In time the little man appeared.

“Well I’ll go to the foot of our stairs!” he announced when he saw the mountains of BS around the girl, “I thought I could spout it, but this guy, he takes some beating.”

“What will you give me if I spin the BS into golden periods a third time?” he asked

“I have nothing left. I am all cried out and feel numb.”

“That’s not much good. I tell you what, if you become queen you are bound to get knocked-up by NarcKing so you are bound to him, so I will take your first born child for the purposes of triangulation.”

Who knows whether that will ever happen, thought the Lieutenant’s Daughter and not knowing how else to help herself in this strait, she agreed.

And when the NarcKing rolled in at 6am after a night of seduction, he found all as he had wished and took the Lieutenant’s Daughter in marriage and she became an intimate partner primary source and was treated like a queen.

About a year later she brought a beautiful child into the world and never gave a thought about the funny little man, but one evening, showing a flagrant disregard for boundaries, the little man wandered into her chamber and said,

“I have a huge sense of entitlement so give me what I want.”

The queen was horror-struck and offered the funny little man her character traits and many residual benefits including a full subscription to Netflix and exclusive use of a crystal carriage but the little man refused.

“No, the hoover fuel and triangulation potential of your child are far dearer to me than binging on science fiction shows all day.”

 

  Then the queen began to howl and cry. The little man had not experienced her negative fuel for a year so it made him feel better and he wondered whether he would be best keeping the queen as a non-intimate secondary source who he could keep returning to.

“I tell you what, seeing as I am a decent chap or at least so my façade thinks, I will give you three days and if by that time you find out my name, then you shall keep your child.”

So the queen thought the whole night of all the names that she had ever heard, and she instructed a messenger to ride all over the country to inquire, far and wide, for any other names that there might be. The messenger, who had been through this song and dance so many times decided instead to head to the castle library and do some research about this peculiar little man which the queen had described. He found some tomes by a sagely individual known as T G Hudor. He settled down to read the books which went by titles such as “Fairy Tale Fury”, “Going No Contact and Dispelling Annoying Little Men” and “Begone! How to Beat Funny Little Men.” Rather than waste time finding out names, the wise messenger read and read and then he just picked up the list of names from the last time he was sent on the quest and handed it to the queen for her to use before he headed back to his research.

When the little man came the next day, she began with Soulmate, True Love and Shining Star, and said all the names she knew, one after another, but to every one the little man said, “That is not my name.”

On the second day she had inquiries made on a popular blog as to the names of the people the commenters there knew, and she repeated to the funny little man the most uncommon and curious. Perhaps your name is Tubby, or Dickula, or Narcopath , but he always answered, “That is not my name.”

On the third day the messenger, who frankly found all this name-gathering nonsense a chore, came back again, and said, “I have not been able to find a single new name so I guess you are up shit creek.”

“Oh my goodness, ” cried the queen, “what am I to do, I do not want to lose my child and have it triangulated by Yoda’s uglier brother.”

The messenger had seen this played out many times before but just went along with it usually as the pay at the castle was good and the view from his turret was impressive, so he went through the ritual of this repeated hoovering by the funny little man. After many years though, the messenger had made some important gains in his research and besides he wanted to get through a few box sets so he felt it was time that the charade came to an end.

 

“Your majesty, if I may make a suggestion, when this Rum… er funny little man appears, don’t worry about knowing his name, but instead ignore him.”

“Ignore him, but why?”

“Trust me, I’ve endured this scenario thirty times in my lifetime and to be frank, I need a break from all of the running around on ridiculous quests and errands. If you want this weirdo to clear off, just ignore him. I can guarantee he will not take your child.”

And when soon afterwards the little man came in, and asked, “Now, mistress queen, what is my name?”

The Queen said nothing.

“I said what is my name?”

The Queen stared out of the window.

“My name? My name? What is it?” hollered the little man jumping from foot to foot.

But the Queen took the advice of the messenger and ignored the little man quite completely. No matter what he said to her, how much of a scene he made, she just ignored him until in his ignited fury he plunged his right foot so deep into the earth that his whole leg went in, and then in a rage he pulled at his left leg so hard with both hands that he tore himself in two and was gone.

The Queen smiled and cradled her child as the messenger thanked his own personal god that the merry go round had finally ended.

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All In The Eyes

ALL IN THE

The eyes are one of our powerful weapons. I hear so many comments made about my eyes.
“I saw the world in your eyes.”
“Everything I ever wished for, I could see in your eyes.”
“I’ve never known anyone give me such a malevolent stare.”
“You are dead behind the eyes.”
“That hollow look you give me, chills me inside.”
“Your reptilian, empty stare always unnerved me.”
When we first engage with you, we are able to reflect back at you want you desperately want. Hope, optimism, desire and trust are all mirrored in our eyes. Do not be mistaken and think that we generate those looks. We do not. All we are doing is ensuring that you see what you want to see in order to ensnare you. This mirroring serves two purposes. Firstly, it shows you what you crave for and makes us all the more attractive to you. Secondly, it masks the empty void that truly exists. Whilst my kind and me learn how to behave and act, we mimic the way in which we are expected to respond in the most favourable manner, we do not truly feel any of those things and we cannot generate it in our eyes. Everything else we are able to simulate – the laugh, the smile, the look of surprise, the intonation of elation in our voices. We have carefully crafted these facsimiles of your emotions but managing to do so in our eyes has always eluded us. We cannot fall at the first hurdle however and have you see through our charade. Accordingly, we have managed to master the mirroring technique. You want that love and hope so badly you will see it in us when you are really just seeing yourself. We hold your gaze for longer than anyone else. You are conned into thinking this is just demonstrating the intensity of our desire for you. It is not. We must look directly into your eyes to shine back at you that which you send towards us. Should we look way, the reflection may fail and we must always have you in our eye.
As with all of our pretence we are unable to maintain this deceit for long. The mirror breaks and the shards of reflection fall away leaving the chasm of emotionlessness behind. The barren hinterland beyond our eyes is all that is left, bereft of anything at all. That is why in the later stages you will see nothing when you look at us. We cannot generate those real emotions and our mirror has now failed. Our real gaze is all that is left, cold, empty and lifeless. People often remark about how the eyes are the window to the soul. Our soul left long ago and that is why you look into dead, uncaring eyes. Even though our mouth is upturned in a smile, the crows feet at the sides crease and the brow rises, our eyes betray us. Glacial and sterile they show the reality of what we are; devoid of positive emotion and spiritually bankrupt.
All that we are able to muster is hatred. Our loathing of this unjust world is so intense that it will break through when we wish to direct that hatred against you. That is when the emptiness vanishes and instead you are subjected to our laser-like, pinpoint accurate malevolent stare. I mentioned in the recollection about the cookie jar, how I had practised my withering stare one summer. This is the precursor to our malice, our antipathy and our scorn. With consummate ease we will call on it to intimidate you and signal our contempt for you. It is powerful, unwavering and unsettling. To be on the receiving end of our hateful stare is not a pleasant experience. We muster such power with our eyes, to seduce you and then to break you, but the reality is that we only have three settings. The mirror, the void and the hatred. There is nothing else. That is all that our eyes have.

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Birthday Blues

birthday

They happen every year and you have come to dread the appearance of both your own birthdays and mine. You would much rather neither taken place if you are entirely honest. The day is spent treading on eggshells as you await the inevitable argument and dressing down that you will receive. The annual sense of disappointment will happen again and again and you hope somehow it will change, but it never does.

Let’s begin with my birthday. You dedicate time and money to making my birthday an enjoyable and memorable occasion. I dedicate a degree of energy to ensure that it is memorable, but for the wrong reasons. You plan something special to mark the occasion and go to considerable lengths to organise a surprise party or a trip out somewhere you believe I will like. You scour catalogues and the Internet trying to find that gift you hope will make me break out in a smile. Most normal people will be happy with half the effort you put into pleasing me on my birthday. Not me. The occasion may involve a grand day out and a spectacular gift but just as it did last year and the year before that, it will end in an argument and us lashing out at you.

On the face of it, one would imagine that just for once we would get throughout the day without causing some kind of drama. After all, the day is all about us. Exactly what we like and what we want. People wish us happy birthday, they send us cards, they give us presents and you run around lifting and carrying for us (even more than usual). The spotlight is firmly on us. We drink up all this fuel but still we want more. Every single second has to be about us. Do not expect us to thank you or anyone else who provides us with a gift. Remember, we are entitled to receive them. We may have received gifts of twenty people but you know that all we will harp on about is the person we did not get a gift from whom we expected to. That becomes the focus of our irritation. The brilliant and thoughtful gifts are left to one side as we rail against this one person who has not bought us something. It does not matter that they send a card, it does not matter that we did not send them a gift on their birthday (and never have done), and it does not matter that nobody else would expect this distant relative to send such a gift. We will raise it and repeat it and rant about it.

Woe betides you if you do not give to us the exact gift we expected. If you fail to do this we will comment and lash out at you. You cannot possibly love us since you did not give us the right gift. We conveniently ignore the fact that what you have brought us is still a wonderful gift and we actually do like it. That is not the point. It is not the gift we wanted and you will be subjected to our scathing remarks. If by sheer dint of exhaustive effort you manage, against all the odds, to work out what we want (don’t expect us to help you by explaining what we want, we expect you to know this through telepathy) and give us the right gift, do not expect smiles and thanks. We need to make a scene. Instead, we will remark,

“I see you finally got it right. It does not really make up for all the years you got it wrong does it?”

You can never win when it comes to providing us with gifts. We will always want to put you down no matter what you have done and irrespective of the effort and expense that you have gone to. We will always be unsatisfied and this will manifest in us giving you a dressing down in front of everyone at the party, or storming out of the venue at some sleight. Every year you will hear the same stinging accusation ringing in your ears,

“You’ve ruined my birthday. Again.”

When it comes to your birthday the position is just as bad. We will routinely pretend to forget about it. Do not be fooled by our repeated apparent memory lapses. We have minds that remember everything and our powers of recall are spectacular. We know your birthday is on the horizon and with most things with us it generates two reactions. On the one hand we resent the forthcoming anniversary because it is a day geared towards the individual, namely you. It is not about us and we cannot stand that. It is rare that you ever allow the spotlight to be shone on you (by now you are so used to having to point it at us, you give up on it ever being fixed on you) but you do hold out the futile notion that it might still be done on your birthday, of all days. We find this galling. This is a day that will be about you and thus where will we get our fuel? Its approach generates dread and horror inside of us.

Conversely, we relish your birthday because we know, despite every previous disappointment, you still hold out hope that this year it might just be different. You pray to your own personal god that please, just for once, the day can pass without incident and you can enjoy yourself. You are not particularly bothered about doing anything special, perhaps a meal out somewhere and the gift need not be expensive, just so long as it exhibits that some kind of thought has gone into it. Your thoughts are based on hope as opposed to expectation. It will not be different because we need to spoil it; we need to make you feel upset and demeaned. To achieve this there are various things that we will do on your birthday.

  1. We forget about it completely. If you mention at 6pm that evening that it is your birthday we will lash out at you by explaining how busy we have been at work or that there has been some other pressing matter which means that it has slipped our minds. We deliberately forget about it and we will not countenance you criticising our omission.
  2. We organise something lavish but we know it is not something you will actually like. As usual, you put a brave face on it and fix a rigid smile to your face. We know what you are really thinking because we know it is not something you like. In fact, it is more likely that we have organised something that we enjoy. We do this so that everyone else can see what a grand and delightful gesture we have made and we drink in his or her admiration. It also enables us to poke at you repeatedly suggesting that you don’t like it. We are goading you into making a tiny admission that it is not quite what you expected and then we erupt in self-indignant fury as we castigate you for being ungrateful after all the effort we have gone to.
  3. We buy some token gesture and point out that your 43rd birthday is not really something to celebrate is it? It is hardly a milestone. We then use this to remark on your advancing years and point out your various flaws.
  4. We organise a lovely birthday for you but spoil it by turning the spotlight back onto ourselves. We turn up late, we flirt with a guest or we manufacture some drama so that everyone is looking at us and not you. We complain at waiters when there is a family meal out, when there is not actual need to do so. We want to make a scene and wrench the spotlight back over to us.
  5. We remember your birthday and spend it doing what you want and we are pleasant to you until early evening when we deliberately pick a fight with you over absolutely nothing. The fuel we gain from this behaviour is all the sweeter as we have built you up, your guarded behaviour has melted away as we appear to have done everything that pleases you. We are waiting. We are waiting for you to feel good and happy and then we will cast you down so your emotional reaction is all the more heightened.

This behaviour is not just reserved for your birthday although we enjoy ruining your birthday the most. We do this with the birthdays of our children, friends and family. We hate it being about someone else and we hate seeing him or her being happy. In our world, nobody else is allowed a birthday and we believe that every day is our birthday and everyone should recognise that and act accordingly.

We know that you would rather your birthday be erased from the calendar. It is always a horrible day in one form or another and you would rather it not take place. We put a big red ring around it in the calendar in our mind and scribble next to the day the words, “ Special Fuel Day.”

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Ice on the Awake

icing-on-the-awake

The bedroom is one of my favourite rooms. One of my ex-girlfriends used to call it the torture chamber. Another called it the freezer. Their appellations amused me. I don’t like to be touched. Dr O has suggested this is because that touch reminds me too much of what I am missing. I laughed at her remark. I prefer not to be touched, so how on earth would I miss that? I soon learned in the bedroom however that there was an expectancy to touch and hold. At first I would go along with this ritual but I soon tired of it and the thought of ‘spooning’ made me gag. I then learned however that my dislike of being touched and touching was actual a very useful weapon. I initially refrained from touching purely because I did not like it. No more. No less. The person in bed with me however would make such a scene about it that I learned they had to be touched or held to affirm that I felt something for them. Accordingly, by withholding any form of contact this would really upset them. It was marvellous. I was able to turn an idiosyncrasy of mine into a tool to cause upset and distress. If I refused to cuddle up (I’m shuddering just typing that) then I would be met with loud sighs and pleading requests. This emboldened me to not even face their way. In fact, I would lie looking at them and then purposefully turn my back on them. Moments later the sobbing would start and I would feel the power flowing through me before I drifted off to sleep. From what they told me, they endured many a lonely night trying to sleep. If they tried to place an arm around me, I would shrug it off or if really irritated (and this was a body blow) I would get up and sleep in the spare room. I love doing this. Not only do I get to really isolate the other person but then I can criticise them in the morning for forcing me from my bed and into the spare room. That gives me a delightful boost as I butter my toast.

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How Could You?

how-could-you

 

“How could you do this to me?”

“How could you sleep with my sister?”

“How could you just walk out on us like that and never even contact us for months?”

“How could you treat me like I didn’t exist?”

“How could you hit me when you say that you love me?”

“How could you get me into so much debt?”

“How could you stand by and let me suffer so badly?”

“How could you not see what you were doing?”

“How could you not understand what I was saying to you?”

“How could you tear us apart like this?”

“How could you say such awful, horrible things to me?”

“How could you? In our bed of all places?”

“How could you even look at yourself in the mirror after doing that?”

“How could you let me down in such a terrible way?”

“How could you destroy our family?”

“How could you not control yourself?”

“How could you do such a thing to your own children, for God’s sake?”

“How could you disappear like that?”

“How could you be so heartless?”

There is little doubt that you have asked one or more of the questions above, or a variation of those queries when dealing with our kind. Your question will have been asked in a heightened emotional state as your world collapsed and you struggled to comprehend that somebody could behave in such a manner. Nothing made sense anymore.

Everything you thought that you knew had been torn up, re-written and trampled into the dirt. Your alarm, confusion and distress were considerable and your bewilderment and sheer astonishment that a human being could do such things only served to make your position even worse.

Whatever was said or done. No matter how morally bereft, ethically bankrupt or socially unacceptable the act. No matter the level of depravity, the depths to which we sunk and the new low we achieved, you found yourself asking this question. No matter what you did, what you gave and what you gave often, it mattered not one iota because you were left asking this question.

Invariably you received no explanation. Denial and deflection ruled the day. Perhaps there was some mumbled explanation or even a demonstration of false contrition by way of a Preventative Hoover, but whatever our response will have been, it will not have given you the truth of how we could have done those things.

We are able to say those things and commit those acts for several reasons.

  1. Golden Period. You were given the golden period. You were either spared the worst of our behaviour for a time period (usually the Lesser) or you were given the whole glorious illusion of love, passion and dizzying elation. You received this and you embraced it willingly. There is a price that comes with such largesse you know and now you are paying it through us behaving in such a manner as that which has caused you such distress.
  2. Entitlement. Who are you to challenge what we have done? Who do you think you are questioning us as to how we could have done those things? We are entitled to do as we please, when and how we like and you have to deal with that. Someone as great as us gets to behave as he wants and you ought to know better than to challenge us about it.
  3. Necessity. All we do is as is required by necessity. Whether it was to gain fuel, to punish you, to remind you of your position, to reinforce our superiority, to preserve the façade and so many other potential reasons, what we do is necessary and if that results in suffering for you, then that is how it must be. Our needs matter. Yours do not.
  4. No accountability. Linked to our sense of entitlement there can be no penalty, sanction or reprimand for our actions. We are immune from punishment or consequence. We do not even have to explain ourselves and therefore this allows us to proceed as we deem appropriate.
  5. No awareness. The Lesser or Mid-Range will not even be aware that what they have done is wrong or offensive since their perspective of the world is different to yours.
  6. No admission. The Greater knows what has happened is considered to be wrong by you, not that he cares and furthermore neither will he admit as such. To do so would be a sign of weakness and hand an advantage to you.
  7. You deserve it. You don’t function as you should any more. You have gone rogue and let us down. Accordingly, our response was entirely merited by punishing you.
  8. No conscience. There is no downside, no guilt or remorse in doing what we did. Therefore, we are untroubled by the import of your allegations.
  9. Fuel. We need it. Accordingly, everything is in play and anything can be done to acquire it.

How could you not realise all of this?

No wonder we get sick of you.

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My Secret Garden

my-secret-garden

Would you like to know what my garden is like? Before I tell you, why don’t you stop and close your eyes and picture in your mind’s eye what you think my garden looks like? That’s right, conjure up the image that forms when you think of me and what my garden might be like. Take your time, move around it and ensure you have given it due consideration as you generate the image. Have you done it? Did it take you long? I suspect you managed to envisage it rather quickly didn’t you, after all, you are well-known for your amazing imagination aren’t you? I often find I have to apologise for your fantastic tales and over the top comments, but that is to be expected of somebody like you. Anyway, let’s leave your behaviour to one side for the time being (although I will return to it when nobody is looking, you can be assured of that) and let’s consider what you created in your mind.

I should imagine that the landscape you have formulated is one of two outcomes. I expect that some of you will have pictured nothing but concrete. All plant life and flora banished by a solid slab of grey cement that has solidified into an impenetrable barrier that stretches in all directions, lifeless and uninspiring. Once there might have been a flourishing and verdant garden but it has been banished by this concrete covering which has extinguished anything that grew or blossomed. If the concrete carbuncle is not what you saw in your mind then you will have opted for the alternative. You will have pictured solid, barren and lifeless soil which will not sustain anything of beauty. A toxic and poisonous stream flows through the centre of it, dead fish floating on their backs as they drift lifelessly along. Not even algae grow on this polluted stream. The few trees there are in this garden are dead. The bark grey and lifeless, forlorn limbs stretching into a dark grey sky, where there is always cloud. The branches and twigs are leafless. The bushes consist of brambles which hinder anybody who might try and move through this uninviting place. There is no grass and there a few brown, dried-out husks which suggest they might have once been something greener and vibrant. There are no sweet smelling flowers here, only the awful stench which rises from the slow-moving stream which looks more like treacle that water. Even the weeds are few and far between, struggling to find any sustenance from the sterile soil.

Is this what you saw?

Come and follow me as I take you into my secret garden. I produce a key from my jacket explaining that very few people ever get to see my secret garden but I am letting you inside because you are special and I like you. I open the thick gate and usher you inside. You do not see me hurriedly lock it behind you since you are busy staring at the beautiful garden that rolls out before you. Capability Brown must have laboured long and hard here. The lawn is flat and even, the grass has been rolled so that stripes have formed and there is not one blemish to be seen amidst the green, green blades. The edges of the lawn have been carefully cut so that no grass overhangs so that there is a distinct line between the lawn and the flower beds. The soil looks fertile, well-nourished and is free of weeds. A dazzling array of flowers grow from this well-tilled soil. Strong stalks reach up towards the azure sky, shiny leaves sprouting from the stalks before the injection of colour appears. Every shade of the rainbow is represented amongst the many varieties of flower that flourish in my secret garden. Brilliant blues, fiery oranges, ruby reds and sunshine yellows abound. The flowers have short petals, long petals which move in the gentle breeze, there are bell-shaped flowers, trumpet shaped flowers and others shaped like stars. White, purple, scarlet and ochre all combine to create this tapestry of beauty. A stream gurgles as it passes through the garden, cutting across the magnificently manicured lawn, so that an intricate bridge has been created allowing one to traverse from one side to the other. Bushes ring the flowers, an expert in topiary having crafted them into sensational shapes. Beyond the bushes are the trees, tall and trimmed so that they form a fence around this paradise. You stand on the edge of this magnificent garden utterly transfixed. The scents waft from the roses, from the lilies and the sweet William combining to create a heady concoction of fragrances. You are over awed by this display.

“Do you like it?” I ask.

You are dumb-founded, unable to speak. All you can muster is a slow nod as you feel a tear trickle down your cheek from your left eye as you are overtaken by how beautiful it all is.

I beckon to you and you follow me to a nearby apple tree which is festooned with fruit. The red and green apples hang from the branches and I pluck one and pass it to you. You smile and take a bite anticipating how fresh and crisp the apple will be. Your teeth easily sink in as you are surprised to find the flesh of the apple soft. You taste bitterness in your mouth and instinctively spit out the piece of fruit.

“What’s wrong?” I ask as I select an apple too.

“It is sour,” you explain. I take a bite from my apple and you hear the crunch as I take a chunk from it. I chew and through the mouthful explain that mine tastes fine. I hand the apple to you and you bite into it. It is soft and again tastes sour. Confusion rises inside you as you look at the apple and see a maggot wriggling beneath where you have bitten into the apple. You hurl the apple away as I invite you to sniff a magnificent rose nearby. You lean in and inhale its perfume, pulling the petalled head towards you. There is no scent and instead you sneeze. As you let go of the rose you give a short cry of pain and find that a thorn is wedged in your finger, the blood already spooring from the wound and trickling down your finger. You sneeze again,your nose irritated by something and you keep sneezing as your eyes water. You stagger away from the rose still sneezing and into a bush but it is not the sculpted creation you saw moments earlier. Instead, you feel a prickling sensation as you are stung and realise you have stumbled into a bed of nettles. Pain rising you stagger away, eyes streaming and make for where you recall the stream is hoping to use the cool, clear water to wash away the irritation you have suffered. You can just make out where it is through your blurred vision as you drop to your knees only to cry out again. You have knelt on some thistles.Where did they come from? This lawn was flawless before. You reach out flailing for the stream but there is nothing, The water has gone and the stream has dried up. You feel something wrap around your left wrist and as you try to wipe away the tears from your eyes with your free hand, you feel pain as a vine begins to tighten about your wrist. You pull trying to free yourself from it and twist around to call to me for help.

The smooth lawn is no longer there. Gone is the rolled grass. Instead you are looking at a mountainside, rugged and steep. You yank your arm as the vine is trying to pull you and look upwards. You can see me standing there smiling at you, looking down from my lofty position atop this mountain which has sprung out of nowhere. A cold wind begins to blow as you shout for help, another vine beginning to snake towards you. I tilt my head as if I cannot hear you, a smile still plastered across my face.

“Help me, what is happening?” you shout.

“Nothing,” I call back, ” I don’t know what you are talking about.”

“This. The garden, it has changed,” you yell above the gathering wind. You see that I am shaking my head.

” Not it’s not, everything is just the same, Beautiful isn’t it?” I reply.

You frown. How can I not see what has altered? The beautiful glade has become a hostile and hurtful place. How has this happened to you? You try and crawl forward and I stand watching you, offering no help as more vines snake towards you, the ground beneath you hard and stony. The vines wrap about you and threaten to pull you into the abyss below you. All the while I stand and watch smiling.

Welcome to my secret garden.

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