WHY YOU SHOULD FEAR THE SMEAR

 

It is highly likely that you have been on the receiving end of a smear campaign. It is unusual if such a campaign is not used by our kind when dealing with the person who holds the position of primary source of fuel. The benefits of instigating the smear campaign are numerous and indeed in many instances the smear campaign is a necessary device for the maintenance of appearances, fuel and control. Since we are creatures of economy when it comes to the expenditure of our energies we operate those manipulations which are the most rewarding in terms of energy versus effectiveness. Smear campaigns rank high on such a list and this is for the following five reasons.

  1. Conviction

The smear campaign is rolled out in a convincing fashion. It is done with speed, it is done for the most part without your knowledge and it is effected by us in a manner which suggests that our words are undeniable truth. We are very good at persuading and portraying something as correct and the truth when it is not. We will seize on some element of your behaviour, some aspect of actions on your part or things you have said which are recognised by people. Perhaps you once got drunk at a party and kept falling over (it was a one-off and not helped by the fact you hadn’t eaten beforehand the copious amounts of alcohol we plied you with) but this forms the basis of creating a picture of your abusive alcoholic actions. You may be known for getting over emotional, especially when tired and therefore the picture is painted of you as histrionic. Taking some germ of truth and then applying it out of context, exaggerating and magnifying is a skill we utilise in the creation of the smear campaign.

“Yes, I am afraid I am at my wit’s end with Jenny, her drinking is out of control. I have kept a lid on it so far for your sake, I didn’t know want you upset, but I do not know what to do. You remember that party at Jonathan’s? Yes, that’s right when she could not even sit up, that’s a nightly occurrence now.”

We speak with such conviction and confidence that people do not challenge what we say. People usually accept the truth of what they are told by other people. This is a necessary social device because if it was to the contrary nothing would get done if people were suspicious and question everybody’s motives and comments. We play on this default setting and our confident and superior nature allows us to create a convincing smear campaign and thus guarantee its effectiveness.

  1. The Façade

Our façade of respectability that we have carefully created whereby we are seen as good, reliable, dependable and kind to the outside world provides us with serious support when doing out a smear campaign. In the similar way by which we point to evidence of your drink problem, temper tantrums and neediness as the basis for a much larger and wide problem, we rely on the existence of the constructed façade to demonstrate that we are not the issue. How can we be? We are seen by your friends, the neighbours and your family as that generous, pleasant and helpful chap who must be a good husband and father. He always says hello, is polite, holds down a good job, is seen out and about in the community and so forth. The creation of the façade is not only important for us to draw fuel; it is a fundamental part of why our smear campaigns are so effective.

  1. You Don’t Help Yourself

You fall right into our trap with a lot of your behaviour when you discover that you are being smeared. Rather than consider obtaining some independent and impartial evidence which you present in a calm and measured manner, allowing people to reach their own conclusions, you charge around, wild-eyed and upset, declaring repeatedly that

“It is him, not me, can you not see it? You must be blind or stupid if you cannot.”

This will not endear you to anybody. Nobody likes to be criticised. By slating their ability to make a decision you make them defensive and it becomes easier for them to make a decision which favours us. Do they believe the calm individual who has presented as such for the last year or so and who has come to explain you have a problem and we need help to deal with it or do they believed the swivel-eyed, tear-stained, histrionic person who keeps protesting it is not them? It is not a difficult decision to make.

Of course we encourage you to present in such a manner through our steady manipulative treatment of you. Moreover, we know that it mightily offends you to be thought of as something that you are not and in your frazzled and highly-strung state, you will not approach the denial of the smearing in a rationale or constructive fashion. This heightens the effectiveness of what we are doing. To some extent, you are proving our case for us.

  1. You Are Eroded

Linked to the above is the fact that when the smear campaign starts you will in all likelihood have been subjected to a sustained period of devaluation which has taken its toll on you. You will be exhausted from our tactics of preventing you from sleeping. You are anxious. You are hypervigilant. You cannot think straight owing to fatigue and the gas lighting to which you have been subjected. Your confidence has been whittled away and your ability to think in a critical fashion has been damaged. The combination of all these ailments means that you are ill-equipped to fight the battle with us for the minds and hearts of those observing. We got in first and you will always be fighting an uphill battle with few resources to rely on. You will have been isolated by us from your support networks. At best this means you cannot call on help when you most need it. At worst this results in those people you thought you could rely on, taking our side. This ineffectiveness of your ability to cope – caused by us – result in our campaign becoming more effective.

  1. Aversion to Conflict

People do not like conflict. People hate it when a couple divorces. It is not so much about feeling sad for the fact that two people they like are splitting up. Instead, it is more about the selfishness which means they have to choose on over the other and they would rather not do so. They want people to get along and when we present to those observing that we have tried to make things work but you have not allowed this to happen, the observers’ inherent desire for people to get along causes them to prejudge you. You become labelled as the troublemaker. People have their own lives to lead and they want everything else to run smoothly around them. If you are preventing this state of affairs from existing, then this will result in those supposedly impartial observers taking our side and not wanting anything to do with you because you have breached the peace. Knowing this to be the case of course will cause you to react even more and it becomes self-fulfilling. Again, this backdrop of the mind-set of others has this impact on the effectiveness of our campaigns.

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THE FINAL

“He told me he never wanted to see me again so long as he was alive. That is it. This time it  really is over.”

“She told me I was useless, pathetic, that she hated me and she would call the police if I came near her again. I don’t understand what is going on, but all I know that is the absolute end.”

“He made it clear that there is no future for us, that he cannot stand the sight of me and that he wants me packed and gone by morning. This is it. It really is it, this time.”

“She has taken everything and left me a letter explaining that she cannot do it any more, that she needs to find herself, whatever that means and there is no future for us together. I knew this was coming, I could tell, I have been given the final discard.”

The final discard. The curtain of conclusion. The guillotine of totality.

It really is over.

So often victims of our kind distinguish between being discarded and then there is (await dramatic music) the FINAL discard. There is being kicked to one side by us but the prospect of being hoovered back in and then there is the final discard whereby you have been removed from your association with us and it is the end of the entanglement and there will be no more engagement between you and I.

Victims often consider declaring that this time is the final discard and they do this for two reasons, which, interestingly are conflicting.

The first reason is that they desperately hope that it is not the final discard at all and that when they explain to whoever is listening to them recount the minute my minute dynamic of this final discard, that the person will tell them that it is not. The victim is hoping that the listener will provide some cogent reason, some piece of evidence which will explain that it cannot be the final discard and thus fulfil that which blazes at the heart of all empathic individuals; hope.

The victim does not want the entanglement to end. He or she cannot bear the pain. They do not want this to be their exile, their abandonment or their expulsion. They want to remain with us but fear that this time it really is the end and they are crying out for somebody to tell them that it is not, just so they can cling to a hope.

The second reason is because the victim does indeed hope that it is over so they are freed from our monstrous clutches. They want that to be the end. The victim, either at the time or sometime after this final discard, having gained some knowledge and understanding, ascertains that what they did caused significant wounding (although often they are wrong about that) and that this wounding was to such a degree that it sent us packing with our tail between our legs, skulking away, broken, humiliated and shame pouring from us, so that we will never, ever dare risk returning to you. The victim concludes that what they did has sent us packing and we will not darken their doorstep or inbox again. It is an understandable conclusion to reach.

There is no such thing as a final discard.

There is no such thing as a discard.

There is only ever dis-engagement.

This is because in our minds you belong to us and the Narcissistic Relationship lasts until you die or we die. That is only when finality applies to our connection. You are our property. You are our fuelling appliance. You are good and then you are bad. You are of use and then you are of no use. And then you are of use again.

We have invested time and energy in you. We want to reap the benefits time and time again.

If you are our primary source, we will dis-engage with you. We paint you black and do not want anything more to do with you at that time. It may appear as if we have ‘discarded’ you, but it is merely the termination of the Formal Relationship. You are not our girlfriend, partner, wife any longer. The Narcissistic Relationship persists. We do not draw fuel from you, we do not take your character traits, we do not take your residual benefits. You are deleted as we enter a golden period with a new primary source.

If you are an intimate secondary source, we will dis-engage with you. You are placed on the shelf, back in the cupboard, ready for the next time we want to engage with you. You are not deleted. You are just not required. For now. There is no discard. You usually are not devalued. If you are, then you have offended us and there will be a dis-engagement and a termination of the Formal Relationship of booty call, friend with benefits, shag partner.

If you are a non-intimate secondary source, we dis-engage with you. You are placed on the shelf again until the next time we wish to engage with you. Most NISSs do not notice this happen because they regard it as a natural lull in between meeting up, speaking and so forth. Again, it is rare for the NISS to be devalued, but if you are, then you have offended us and the Formal Relationship is terminated. You are no longer our friend.

If you are a tertiary source be it intimate or non-intimate, you will be put to one side as we dis-engage. There is no Formal Relationship to terminate. We may return to you or we may not. It depends on our fuel needs.

Thus, you need to understand that there is only ever a dis-engagement. The Narcissistic Relationship persists. If there is no devaluation, we consider the Formal Relationship to remain in place – thus you remain our booty call, our friend – but we have no need to call on you at the present time. If there is devaluation, then the Formal Relationship is over – you are no longer our wife, you are not our boyfriend, you are not the friend or friend with benefits and we dis-engage.

It is usually us who decide on this dis-engagement. Whether there is devaluation and dis-engagement or just dis-engagement, it is invariably us that makes this decision. If you reject us then it is an escape and of course we will endeavour to hold on to you.

What though of the situation where you have actually wounded us considerably, either as we dis-engaged or more likely, when you make your escape? Surely that brings about finality? That must mean we do not want to engage with you any longer because you have mortally wounded us and as a consequence if you did this as we dis-engaged with you, then we will never return yes? If you did it as part of the escape you implemented, then is it not correct to state that we will not hoover you?

No.

As mentioned many times, there is always a risk that we will come back and hoover you. There needs to be a Hoover Trigger activated by you entering a sphere of influence. Thereafter, the Hoover Execution Criteria has to be achieved. This includes various matters to balance, some increasing the risk of meeting the criteria, others diminishing that risk.

This includes

  • the type of narcissist you are dealing with
  • how your fuel was regarded
  • whether you provided character traits
  • whether you provided residual benefits
  • whether you are with somebody new
  • whether you have recovered from a position of being broken or not
  • how easy it is to contact you
  • how easy it is to make physical contact with you
  • whether we know you have been lamenting our dis-engagement
  • whether you have been angry about our dis-engagement
  • whether there are outstanding issues – money, property etc
  • whether there are obstacles
  • whether there is a risk of wounding

Thus you can see the savage wounding you may have inflicted on the last occasion we interacted is but a consideration in the criteria. Yes, it may well be an important consideration when viewed against the other criteria but it will not itself amount to a final discard.

No matter how damning we were about you, how we may well have used words such as “never”, “do not”, “forever” or “always”, we are pragmatists. It is the practical need of fuel which governs all that we do. Contradiction and hypocrisy do not concern us. We can perform a 180 degree turn, a volte face or a complete turnaround and it matters not. Those were yesterday’s words.

We do not discard.

We will always come back IF the Hoover Trigger is activated and the Hoover Execution Criteria are met.

There is no final discard.

And that is my final word on the matter.

5-3

 

I always read views propounded about me and my kind, with considerable interest. I see many intelligent and well-reasoned observations about what we do and why we do it. Many carry considerable force. Other views are purely driven by the understandable anger and hurt that is engendered in people by us, although as I have repeatedly sought to explain, when one operates through emotion, poor decisions are made and the clear picture is not observed. I also come across comments which are made about us which are inaccurate. I am not referring to the disagreement one might have in terms of an ad hominem attack against us. Many people consider us to be arseholes and bastards. I understand that viewpoint, many of my kind would disagree, but it is not that kind of value judgement that makes its way to becoming a myth about us. There are other more important misconceptions. As part of my ongoing work in explaining what we are, why we do what we do and your involvement in this narcissistic dynamic, it is just as important to explain what we are as detail what we are not. With that purpose in mind, I turn to five myths about our kind.

  1. We have no emotions

 

This view has gained some traction owing to the fact that my kind function with a considerable emptiness inside of us. The existence of this void can cause people to believe that because we are a shell and a husk that we are devoid of emotions. The fact that we feed off other people’s emotions also supports the view that we have none of our own. We need to steal the emotions that other people experience to enable us to feel.

The fact is that we do experience and feel certain emotions. We experience annoyance, anger and rage. Indeed, the churning fury which is always there beneath the surface, ready to be ignited, is a prevailing emotion of ours. We know boredom, disgust and loathing. We are very familiar with jealousy, envy, shame and hatred. Malice, malevolence, anticipation, contempt, aggression and power are further ones. Our stable of emotions is dominated by negative emotions. These are the ones which have been allowed to develop and that is because the force behind these emotions has been harnessed to allow us to achieve our aims. Our hatred for being devoid of fuel, drives us on to extract it. Our disgust at weakness causes us to always want to maintain superiority and strength. It is these emotions which make us effective and ruthless.

By contrast we do not experience joy or happiness, sadness or regret, serenity or love, remorse or guilt. These are alien to us along with others. We either have never known them or they have been stripped from us in order to allow us to operate with greater effectiveness, free from encumbrance and hindrance. We understand emotions because we want yours directed towards us. We understand how to mimic them and we understand when they should be exhibited (although some of our kind are better at this than others) but ultimately we do experience some emotions, just nowhere near as much as you.

  1. Copying us infuriates us

 

No it does not. If we are angry with you and shouting, if you decide to mirror this behaviour, all you are doing is providing us with fuel. If you parrot what we say to you, if there is any emotion attached to it, even if it is said with sarcasm, a sneer or contempt, it is fuel. If you decide to fall silent because we have, we may realise that the silent treatment is not reaping the fuel that we expected, but it does not infuriate us. Instead, we will just switch to a different form of manipulation in order to cause you to provide us with fuel. You find it hard after a while to keep mirroring what we are doing, your emotional capacity is such that it usually breaks through in some form and thus fuel is provided. We also recognise what you are doing and if you are giving us fuel, we will let you continue to mirror us. If you are not, your mirroring is not a criticism therefore there is no wounding, but we will shift to a different behaviour to bring forth the fuel.

  1. We miss you when you are gone

 

No, we miss your fuel, not you. That is what we miss most of all. We may also miss the traits that we were able to steal from you and also the residual benefits that you provided. It is something that victims of our kind find very difficult to accept. Surely some of what we said and did was genuine? It seemed that way, so surely it must have been? It must be the case that we liked somethings that you did? We did; the fuel, the traits and the residual benefits. We did not care about whether you were humorous, save that your sense of humour was appropriated by us for the purpose of making us seem better with other people. The radiant smile is only missed because it gave us fuel. Your extensive knowledge about wine was again another trait which made us look better.

Not only is it only these things that we miss when you are gone, the simple fact remains that if we discarded you, we decided that you were no longer worth the effort in keeping around and in most cases, we had identified and seduced a replacement. With this person in place, we focus on them, only turning to you to dole out Malign Follow-Up Hoovers (or Benign ones later when the replacement begins to turn stale). There is little doubt that you loved us with everything that you had, that you thought the world of us and nobody could have done for us what you did, but that is all from your perspective. Once we have discarded you, that all counts for nothing. You became a malfunctioning appliance and you have been replaced. We miss nothing about you.

If you escape, we will miss the three items that I detailed above and indeed we will look to recover them through the Initial Grand Hoover and Follow-Up Hoovers but do not think that our protestations of being unable to live without you, how we cannot imagine another day with you and we miss you so much, have anything to do with you as a person. They do not. We are unable to live without your fuel, we cannot imagine another day without using your traits and miss your residual benefits so much. All of these declarations, pleas, begging gestures and so forth are only designed to recover the three principle reasons we attach you. You can tell yourself that we miss you terribly if it makes you feel better but you are misleading yourself.

  1. We hate being alone

 

We need people. There is no doubt about that. We need people because we need the three principle benefits, chief amongst which is fuel, but that is not the same as saying we hate to be alone. In this instance, there is a degree of truth in the above statement but it requires considerable qualification. If we have been well-fueled we are able to be alone, engage in solitary activities and spend time in our own company without difficulty. Of course, the longer this goes on, eventually our fuel level drops and we will need to seek out people, but we do not hate being alone in such a situation.

Furthermore, the advantages of technology mean that although we may not be physically proximate to somebody, the advantages of Skype, text messages, telephone calls and even hand-written letters allows us to be on our own but in contact with many fuel sources. Add to this Thought Fuel and you have a situation whereby we can be physically isolated but with such connections we can manage perfectly well extracting all of these variable fuel types.

Remove such connections however and in a situation when our fuel levels are already low and we are physically isolated with no means of contacting people and that is when you shall see that we hate to be alone.

  1. We have a conscience

We do not. We think only of ourselves, our needs and how each situation can benefit us. We may appear to exhibit a conscience in order to con people and this is something more witnessed with the Mid-Range and Greater Narcissist, in order to fit in to a situation and people’s expectations but we have been created without a need for a conscience. If we had one, we would not be able to trample on people in the way we do. We would not be able to always be moving forward, never caring for what has gone before us. If ever you witness a situation where one of our kind appears to have had our conscience pricked, all it means is that we see an advantage in pretending that this is the case and we wish to dupe you and others for our own benefit.

 

Proof. The empathic individual has certain traits which mean gathering proof and exhibiting that proof to the narcissist and other parties is highly important. An empathic person is honest, decent, believes in the truth and has to have the truth known. This is not done from any sense of gloating or about showing how clever and virtuous the empathic person is. The empath operates this way because: –

  1. They want the truth to be known by third parties;
  2. They want to demonstrate that they are correct;
  3. They want to preserve their self-worth by showing the truth of the situation;
  4. They want to show other people that the narcissist is in the wrong;
  5. They want to demonstrate to the narcissist that what the narcissist has done or said is wrong. This is often done to try to help the narcissist, to heal and to fix, rather than engage in point scoring;
  6. It is done to preserve their sanity in the face of the false reality and all its manipulations which are deployed by our kind.

It often takes an empathic person a considerable amount of time to realise that merely explaining what has happened to our kind gets them absolutely nowhere. You may know precisely what has happened but if your recollection of events, no matter how accurate, does not accord with what we require, challenges us, stops us achieving our aims or worst of all constitutes a criticism, we will do anything and everything we can to distort your truth.

I use the phrase ‘your truth’ because it is always important to keep in mind that with each and every situation there is the Empathic Perspective and there is the Narcissistic Perspective. For example, you serve food for everybody and you start with the person nearest to you and this results in our kind being served last. From the Empathic Perspective, you regard this action as the most practical and the politest. From the Narcissistic Perspective, we view this as a criticism; we should have been served first. This criticism results in us being wounded, this causes the ignition of our fury and we may storm out of the dining room through our cold fury or we may fling the plate at the wall as a manifestation of heated fury, either actions occurring in order to draw fuel to heal the wound that has been created by your criticism of us.

Thus, you have the same event but two different perspectives. If you tried to explain to us that you had served people ahead of us because of practicality all you would be doing is repeating the criticism to us and igniting the fury once again. We will only have regard to our perspective and in the ensuing conversation we would engage in deflection, projection, blame-shifting, word salad and other manipulations to reject what you are asserting. From your perspective it appears innocuous, an over-reaction on our part, but from our perspective our response is completely justified.

What of a situation whereby you suspect we have been cheating with somebody else? Let us assume you have followed us and saw us pick up another woman who we embrace in our car and then head off to some secluded spot, a hotel or another location for the purposes of the tryst. You do not confront us but observe and then wait for our return that evening. You decide to remain calm and when we walk in through the door you state,

“You are cheating on me with a blonde-haired woman. I saw you pick her up this afternoon, kiss her and then I followed you to The Happy Ending Motel and saw you go in a room together.”

If you said this angrily, we would draw fuel from your reaction. We would recognize that this is an opportunity to gain more fuel from you and therefore we would look for ways to provoke you further. You are also challenging us. Whilst it does not manifest as a criticism, we still do not appreciate you trying to challenge our superiority and our entitlement to do as we please.

If you made this comment in a calm and neutral manner, you do not provide us with any fuel. You are also criticising us.

You have seen what has happened. It is not hearsay but you have witnessed our behaviour and you have told us so, providing sufficient detail to confirm its legitimacy. What might you hear in response? There are many different replies.

Denial “No I haven’t. I have been at work all afternoon.” Yes, we will be this brazen. Lies come easily to us.

Deflection. “Yes I was dropping a colleague off. She is staying there for a few days and we needed to talk about a project. You know the new plans for the development in the Old Quarter, well we are involved in that now and we need to put a proposal together in a very short time.” On we go talking about something else.

Projection. “I wasn’t doing anything wrong, not like you and that fellow, what is he called, Mike, I saw you getting close to him last week when you went for coffee.” This may or may not be true, it does not matter. It serves to draw a reaction from you and allows us to move the conversation away from what we have done.

Blame-Shift. “Who do you think you are following me? Who gives you the right to do that? There is something wrong with you. I am sick of you trying to control me.”

Blame-Shift. “So what if I am seeing somebody else, if you put out more than once in a blue moon, I wouldn’t have to go elsewhere would I? I am sick of working hard and coming in to this kind of crap.”

Disappearance – we just turn around and walk back out and disappear to some bolt hole for a few days.

Denial and Projection “I think you are mistaken, are you imagining things again? You keep doing this.”

Deflection and Gas Lighting “Oh that, nothing to worry about there, she is new to the company and I was showing her to where she is staying until her new apartment is ready. I know her from the Southern Office, so I greeted her with a kiss, that was all. Anyway, I told you I was doing this last week, don’t you remember? Yes, I told you all about it over dinner, you must have forgotten again. You seem to be doing that a lot recently.”

Verbal assault “Who do you fucking think you are? You are a miserable old cow. Creeping around watching what I am doing. Jesus, you are so fucking sad, I am sick of you. Look at the state of you.” Cue a tirade of insults which may escalate into breaking things and even attacking you.

No matter how you try to point out to us that you have seen us, you know what you saw, you know what the other woman looks like we will not hear what you are saying.

If you keep going and do so in an emotional manner, all we focus on is the fuel that we are giving you and continuing to provoke you to get more fuel.

If you do it without providing fuel, all we hear is the criticism. This wounds us and forces us to seek fuel from you (or if you continue not to provide it we will be forced to withdraw and seek fuel elsewhere).

We will not accept what you are saying, no matter how convincing you are and no matter how much detail you provide. You will be accused of making it up, reading something into nothing, taking it the wrong way, being confused, being mistaken along with all and more of the other manipulations mentioned above.

What about providing some independent evidence to us? What if you have evidence from our phone, in a document, an e-mail, a sound recording or a video? You decide to show us a video of what we did that afternoon in the hope and expectation that we must surely accept what we have done. It is there, recorded and on the screen. How will we respond?

Once again, depending on the way you have conveyed this to us, you will have either provided fuel (telling us there is more) and you have challenged us or you have criticised us. Our perspective means we need fuel, we want fuel, we need to assert our superiority, we need to maintain control, we need to keep you submissive and manipulated. Astonishing as it may seem, you can expect reactions akin to those above and these as well: –

  1. We will tell you the footage has been edited to make us look bad;
  2. We will say that the footage does not show the whole picture and is taken out of context;
  3. We will say it is somebody who looks like us but isn’t us;
  4. We will try to delete the footage;
  5. We will damage the device on which the footage is held;
  6. We will produce some different evidence which points to some imagined transgression on your part and focus on that instead;

If you have independent evidence of any kind, its production engenders the same response as detailed above because we look at it from an entirely different perspective. You can expect the independent evidence to be attacked, tampered with or destroyed along with the plethora of manipulations that have been described above.

You may think that showing our kind definitive proof of our wrongdoing would cause us to hold our hands up and admit we have been caught. It does not work with our kind in that way. We have been designed to see things in a different way so that we will respond to protect ourselves from your criticism (or to draw more fuel and head off your challenge) and that is what we see and hear – criticism and/or fuel. These devices and manipulations occur because: –

  1. We are never at fault;
  2. We are superior to you;
  3. We must be in control;
  4. We are omnipotent;
  5. You are inferior;
  6. We are entitled to do what we want;
  7. We need fuel; and
  8. We hate criticism.

Save your independent evidence for the third parties. Save your breath and your sanity.

The only thing you will ever prove is how predictable, as narcissists, we are, when are confronted with proof.