2015-05-23 - 9:00 p.m.
The reason I am putting this out there is because I am so amazed that the things I went through with this man are listed so accurately within the writings about this personality disorder. It is absolutely stunning to me that there is a whole segment of the population who interact this way. I am not trying to cast aspersions on my ex. I truly love him, even still. I fell in love with him and cannot help wanting him to be ok. Maybe when he reads this he can recognize himself (I honestly don't see how he could possibly deny it.) and maybe he will look into it further so he can "develop his capacity for genuinely loving, healthy relationships." It would require a very uncharacteristically honest self appraisal which seems to be one of the big deficits in this type of personality disorder. But it's not hopeless. There is a spectrum to this disorder that runs from mild tendencies to straight up evil. I'd like to believe my ex is on the mild end, but it is pretty apparent he is at least moderate to severe, depending on how consciously his deceptions and mind games were carried out.
My ex lights up the entire panel with this disorder. Discovering this has been a revelation to me. It answers all the whys and the hows that have been vexing me for so long. I've compiled a bunch of excerpts from very reliable sources in the field of abnormal psychology regarding one particular disorder. I will reveal the disorder in another post. I want to lay it out so the reader gets the whole scope of this without any preconceived notions about the disorder. I have placed my comments in parentheses.
First things first. Where does this disorder come from?
"This disorder seems to be born of neglect and abuse, both of which are notorious for creating an insecure attachment style." At some point, probably in early childhood, this person was in a position of powerlessness. There may have been situations of terror and victimization in which a negative coping mechanism was formed to avoid that feeling of powerlessness and vulnerability. (I have compassion for him on this. He was heinously abused and neglected as a child.)
People with this disorder:
"Idealize a mate, fantasizing on having the "perfect love" the "perfect mate". (perfect angel) They may have a need to feel their significant other is perfect. May react in anger when this is shown not to be the case. Idealizes mate in the beginning but eventually denigrates them, berating them, etc." (that is how I went from a perfect angel to a pit viper)
Direct quote from Clinical psychologist:
"with this disorder, the initial charming, razzle-dazzle display has nothing to do with you," she said. "You merely supply whatever he wants at the time (sex, money, status),” “Once he or she has you, the ‘love’ you feel will eventually morph into control and denigration.” ( This was the exact trajectory our relationship took.)
Person with this disorder:
Creates fantasies of great romance, great insight or great achievement. Rich fantasy life.
Powerful sense of entitlement – can rationalize selfish acts as perfectly normal
Lacks true empathy; but often can feign empathy quite well
Easily hurt – and easily injures others, sometimes badly
Failure to recognize other people’s emotions and feelings. Key trait — lack of empathy; they are lost in own needs, relating to others as possessions, extensions of self.
Criticism is seen as an attack, and not a useful insight. They just can’t be wrong. (hypersensitive to any criticism or displeasure from outside himself. Always seen as an attack.) (He will see this whole post as an attack and will not see that I empathize and want help for him.)
Once the relationship is over, your history with him is not that important. (How very true)
They believe they’re special and act accordingly - not respecting other people's time , chronic lateness, making people wait. May feel they are justified due to their self importance. (always late, unapologetic)
Expect others to go along with their ideas and plans, solely focused on their comfort, pleasure
Taking advantage of others - relate to others as sources of pleasure, like objects, possessions (unapologetically treated me like a possession)
Express disdain for those they deem inferior (Entire races of people...)
Perceives the world as a constant competition, that others have same “might makes right” philosophy, are fighting for status, superiority etc., as they are. (He thought there was some unspoken standard that I was holding up for him to meet. He often said that he knew he would never be enough for me. He perceived some kind of measuring bar that just wasn't there.)
Has trouble keeping healthy relationships - lacking emotional intelligence, which requires balancing compassion and esteem for self and others. (Has a lifelong history of serial relationships. Can't get along with bosses, relatives, etc.)
Has unrealistic expectations of others who, according to their belief system, are supposed to accept being treated as possessions, extensions of himself. (he wanted me to allow him to do absolutely anything he wanted to me, sexually, without regard for my feelings or any physical or psychological pain it may cause me. He wanted me to do things that I knew would ruin our relationship. Unrealistic fantasy.)
Are easily hurt and rejected. Always the victim. (even after betraying me... he was the victim. He was extremely cruel in an argument but he would be hypersensitive to anything I said in an argument. He was always trying to find insult where there was none intended.)
Fragile self-esteem -again due to unrealistic goals for entitled status.
People with this disorder can be vicious when frustrated. They are cruel in an argument. (Hello)
Appear as tough-minded or unemotional -characteristic of wounded, fragile ego, as defense against emotional intimacy, closeness. (Always. Made sure I was the first to say "I love you", doesn't cry, always avoids emotional vulnerability.)
They compulsively act to control the focus of another’s attention. - seeks to control another person by getting them to surrender their focus, their efforts, their own wants, values and dreams to instead solely promote their happiness. They may may shame or guilt others into giving them what they want by wallowing on their “hurt” feelings, how they’ve been wronged, what they “need” to be happy, regardless that what they “want” may be harmful to both or their relationship, such as some risky sexual behavior, or making a large purchase when in debt, etc. This is what psychologist Alfred Adler referred to “neurotic power” or using punitive tactics to subvert another’s will. (demanding that I skip seminars even if I lose my job over it was an example of this) (this is also where we can file all the "brow beating" over so many other things, too numerous to list.)
They are expert masters of disguise, and can be deceitfully charming. - Initially shows great interest and appreciation for another, and can be charming and charismatic, however, they are experts at manipulating others in order to draw them in, lavishing them with praise and perhaps strategically comparing them favorably to others. The aim of their charm is a trap of sorts, in that this subconsciously sets up another to become increasingly focused on staying on their good side, and more and more afraid of displeasing them. (I became very afraid to displease him and this caused me to withhold info.)
They can be volatile when their mind game is challenged in any way. - They not only lack empathy for others, they relish and admire their ability to get out of and dismiss others’ feelings; they are experts at getting out of making any changes that would truly make another happy — or at least stop doing things that hurt their loved ones. To do so, in their view, would be a weakness, “losing” or “giving in” to the other. So at any sign of someone expressing they’ve been hurt or requesting even a minor change, they often lash out with an array of punitive tactics, to include sarcasm, all designed to shame, guilt or intimidate the other into silence. (hello) This makes it impossible for those in a relationship with them to express their feelings or yearnings and to be heard. (Yes Lawd) This person is adept at quickly and methodically discounting another’s wants or feelings, and even making them feel bad or doubting themselves for doing “such” a thing. (When I read this, there was no denying that my guy fits snugly and perfectly into this disorder. Uncanny description of his modus operandi. Mind blown!)
“The _________ will publicly lambaste you or anyone who dares do something not precisely to his or her liking," Gilbert said. "The way they see it, you didn't just make a mistake: you committed an atrocity and are accused of being stupid or incompetent." If they put you in the position of defending yourself, don't even attempt to explain. (that is where I went wrong) "You will never get this person to see your point-of-view or admit he was wrong," (Holy Lord. I wasted so much time in futile attempts to get him to understand me, acknowledge the truth, see my point of view.)
"People with this disorder paradoxically manifest an inflated idea of their own importance, yet are quick to feel deflated by negative feedback. In addition, because they think everything is about them, they hear others’ attempts to talk about personal feelings as veiled criticisms of themselves.” - Psychology Today (He did indeed constantly apply things I said as veiled criticisms of himself)
As far as this person is concerned, they are never to blame when something goes wrong. Anything that threatens to puncture the bubble of their fantasy is considered the enemy, and any criticism -real or perceived- results in anger and finger-pointing. It can also lead to manipulative, controlling and abusive behavior.
In the world of divorce, a person with this disorder may simply drop the marriage because “the love was not good enough” (he said "love is not enough") and then get outraged that their spouse won’t just go along with it. After all, “isn’t it better that we both should be happy?” They fail to see their spouse as a person , and just assumes that the spouse should feel the way he does. (the 2 times he left me he just decided it was over, with no regard for my feelings and he gave me no vote whatsoever.) Then, this person gets angry with the spouse for being upset, (he got incredibly angry that I reacted negatively to being cheated on and replaced) avoids any criticism (denied that his emotional affair was cheating. Denied all wrong-doing) and may go so far as to feel justified in poisoning the kids or family against their spouse. (felt justified in spending time with the other woman while we were having problems but were not yet broken up) (Demanded his family members unfriend me on social media and stop acknowledging me) Once this person cuts bait, how the spouse ends up is not their concern (this is precisely how he has treated me) – relationships are ultimately chess pieces to be moved around.
Regards others as possessions or objects for their comfort and pleasure, not unlike MASTER AND SLAVE relationship. (Whoa) In some cases the scornful actions stem from their belief that they’re doing others a favor by including them in any way in their life, to include giving tongue lashings. Your needs and requests don't matter.
If you’re in love with someone who's got this disorder, your needs will always come second. They're too busy assessing what they need from you to see you as a whole, separate person with your own needs and desires.
Persons with this disorder tend to be initially attractive due to their gregarious nature, but this attraction wanes when you realize yours is never going to be a relationship based on equality. He vehemently avoids any outward expression of emotion or vulnerability. After a break up, he will seem cold and indifferent about your feelings. (got that right)
Warning: It is dangerous to be in a position of vulnerability with someone who feels justified in hurting you. Many women can’t get their heads around the fact that someone who once loved them can hurt them. (Hello! Is this not what I've been screaming all along?)
With treatment, once this person is serious enough to want to break through the biggest barrier — and that is to truly see their behaviors are damaging not just to the other but also to themselves — and thus, they desire to change, they can find their human capacity to empathically connect to self and others, to their insecurities, and to their own deep yearnings as human beings to develop their capacity for genuinely loving, healthy relationships.
While this diagnosis carries an unpleasant reputation, you need to know what you are dealing with. And if you are the one with the disorder, you will ultimately benefit from understanding why you go from failed relationship to failed relationship – and why you never have enough, despite your intelligence, looks, or success.
The hole in your life is on the inside.
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