Abusive Women, Cults, Brainwashing and Deprogramming, Part I


My last article, How Abusive Women Brainwash You, examined similar brainwashing techniques used by cults, POW camps, political movements and abusive personalities such as narcissistic, borderline, histrionic and sociopathic women. It also explored where and how they diverge.

Specifically, cults break down your personality and belief system, then rebuild you and give you a new belief system. Whereas abusive women break you down and keep breaking you down until there’s nothing left. They don’t rebuild you nor do they have an ideology beyond, “It’s all about me and my feelings” and “I’m always right no matter how wrong I am.”

Over the next few weeks, I will publish a series of articles that will explore: a) the shared characteristics of cult victims and abused men; b) the similarities between abusive women’s courtship behaviors and cult recruitment; c) the way cults and emotional predators break you down and control you; and d) different ways to “break the spell” and come come out from under an abusive partner’s control.

Similarities Between Cult Victims and Abuse Victims

Bullies, narcissists, borderlines, histrionics and sociopaths like easy targets. They go after people who are kind, generous, trusting, eager to please, self-reflective, competent, talented or “gifted” and, most importantly, people who have a desire to cooperate or work things out and a non-confrontational personal style (Namie, 2003). Men of the men I work with became involved with their abusers during or after an event in their life that caused them significant distress like a divorce, the death of a loved one, a prolonged illness, etc.

Cults like easy prey, too. They typically target individuals who are in a state of heightened stress.

Much like emotional predators, cults seek individuals who have recently had a destabilizing experience such as a bad break-up, the death of a loved one, being fired or some other significant life stressor such as a young man who’s left for college and is on his own for the first time. During a period of heightened stress, certain people are more susceptible to an individual or group who claims to have all the answers and/or offers instant companionship or instant intimacy. Michael Langone, PhD has compiled a list of cult victim traits that are similar to the traits of abuse victims. The similar traits are:

  • Dependency: An intense desire for a sense of belonging, approval, acceptance and a fear of being alone.
  • Unassertiveness: Non-confrontational, people-pleasers who are reluctant to question authority.
  • Gullibility: A willingness to believe what another person says without critically thinking it through or challenging it.
  • Naive Idealism: The belief that everyone is good, has some redeeming quality or can change for the better.
  • Desire for Spiritual Meaning: The belief that life has a “higher purpose” or that everything happens for a reason. Sometimes people are just abusive jerks and there’s no deeper meaning attached to it, but good targets keep searching for it despite all evidence to the contrary.

The above personality traits and a state of heightened stress aren’t sufficient to brainwash a potential victim. A conscious knowledge or instinctual knowledge of mind control techniques is also required. Margaret Singer, PhD cites 6 conditions necessary for brainwashing or thought reform. Many cult leaders study these principles and know exactly what they’re doing.

Most abusive women have not studied these techniques. They seem to have an instinctual knowledge of them. [Please note: If they are aware of what they’re doing it’s highly likely that they’re full blown sociopaths and you should regard them as dangerous.]

Singer’s 6 conditions for thought reform:

1. “Keep the person unaware of what is going on and how he is being changed one step at a time.” Not a problem since most abusive women are only vaguely aware of what they’re doing or completely unaware.

2. “Control the person’s social and/or physical environment; especially control the person’s time.” She doesn’t want you talking to outsiders who might challenge the “reality” she feeds you or her authority.

3. “Systematically create a sense of powerlessness in the person.” She instills a sense of learned helplessness within you by placing you in no-win situations.

4. “Manipulate a system of rewards and punishments in order to inhibit the person’s natural personality and behavior.” The goal is to break you down and turn you into a hand puppet.

5. “Manipulate a system of rewards and punishments in order to promote the group’s ideology or belief system and group-approved behaviors.” In other words, she’s right. She’s always right. Don’t question her. Don’t challenge her. She always comes first. You live to serve.

6. “Put forth a closed system of logic and an authoritarian structure that permits no feedback and refuses to be modified except by leadership approval or executive order.” The group has a top-down, pyramid structure. “The leader must have verbal ways of never losing” (Singer, M., 1996, p.64-69).

Most abusive women are mental and verbal contortionists/escape artists. They can twist the most obvious set of facts into a Gordian knot or find ways to evade the conversation by changing the subject (derailing and tangenting) or attacking you on a new front.

Similarities Between Abusive Women’s Courtship Behavior and Cult Recruitment Techniques

Cults and abusers create feelings of guilt, covert and overt fear, powerlessness and dependency in their victims in several ways.

Manipulation, deception and “love bombing” are how cult recruiters and emotional predators get their foot in the door. They lure you in by misrepresenting themselves, lying, hiding their abusive nature and drugging you with praise and affection. Once they insinuate themselves into your life, the outright abuse ensues. First, let’s look at their seduction and relationship building tactics.

Manipulation and Deception. Both cult recruiters and emotional predators employ manipulation and deception to ensnare their targets. Initially, they hide their true natures and intentions and wear a carefully crafted, too-good-to-be-true persona. “Recruiters identify the specific needs or desires of their targets and play to them. They learn to pick up on a person’s fears and vulnerabilities and portray [themselves] accordingly” (Layton).

Abusive women, particularly histrionics, narcissists, sociopaths and borderlines, are natural chameleons and shape shifters. They intuitively discern what you want—e.g., sexy, sweet, adventurous, sporty, artsy, etc.—and play it and you to the hilt. As soon as they’re secure in your attachment, the facade drops away and the emotional and/or physical abuse starts. These women insidiously misrepresent themselves to their potential partners. Sometimes they’re impossible to detect until you’re in over your head.

Furthermore, most abusers aren’t abusive all the time. If they were nasty the majority of the time, psychologically healthy people would keep their distance. This kind of woman is like the wicked witch in a fairy tale who transforms herself into the beautiful maiden to attract potential lovestruck suitors. Shortly after you pledge your devotion to her, she exposes her inner ugliness. It’s hard for many men to let go of the initial illusion and so they continue to play right into her hands.

The Love Bomb. Cult recruiters and many emotional predators drug you with love, admiration, validation, affection, adoration, flattery, laser beam attention, responsiveness and sexual and non-sexual touching. They hang on your every word and create a sense of instant rapport, connection and intimacy. Margaret Singer (1996) describes the technique:

As soon as any interest is shown by the recruits, they may be love bombed by the recruiter or other cult members. This process of feigning friendship and interest in the recruit was . . . part of their program for luring people in. Love bombing is a coordinated effort, usually under the direction of leadership, that involves long-term members’ flooding recruits and newer members with flattery, verbal seduction, affectionate but usually nonsexual touching, and lots of attention to their every remark. Love bombing – or the offer of instant companionship – is a deceptive ploy accounting for many successful recruitment drives.

Many people are seduced by this kind of behavior. Everyone wants to feel special. Abusers play to your ego needs and then turn the tables on you, which is why it’s so difficult to break away once the abuse begins in earnest. You yearn for her to return to the kind, loving person she was when you first met. You believe that’s the real person and the abusive, hostile, cold, unempathic harpy is the aberration. In reality, the opposite is true.

This is how emotional predators and cults seduce you. They flatter you and make you feel special—at first. Next week, I’ll explore how they break you down and keep you down. Meanwhile, don’t drink the Kool-Aid.

Shrink4Men Counseling, Coaching and Consulting Services

Dr. Tara J. Palmatier, PsyD provides confidential, fee-for-service, counseling, consultation and coaching services to help both men and women work through their relationship issues via telephone and/or Skype chat. Her practice combines practical advice, support, reality testing and goal-oriented outcomes. Please visit the Shrink4Men Services page for professional inquiries.

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References:

Photo credits:

Mind control at photobucket.

Love bomb by soul food on flickr.

  1. Elle
    June 24, 2010 at 9:55 pm

    One morning in Dec. I woke up with this crazy thought/voice in my head that I should travel across the state and check up on my husband. We’ve been geographically separated, but didn’t divorce….who knows why. We got along when together…anyway something kept telling me: Dan is in trouble. Drive across state to see him. Long story short, I found a woman in his apartment while he was at work. They had been having an affair for 10 months. She was gone for six of those months. I learned from probing questions from him that she lived in Fiji and recruited and hosted new members in a religious cult. She was also his old high school girlfriend, 25 years ago. She admitted to me that she pursued him, That he didn’t want to have an affair and that he wanted to work things out with me. Anyway, the first day I went into his apartment, I found 3 movies rented from Blockbuster that she selected. I couldn’t believe how obvious the love bombing was. Each movie was about how high school lovers were separated during their lives and how they were reunited! What emotional manipulation. I yelled at my weak husband that “You’ve been played like a fiddle.” Anyway, I’m still reeling from the affair. I don’t know if I’ll ever heal. I didn’t trust my husband with alcohol, but I always trusted that he would be faithful while married. We’re trying to work it out. I moved back with him and a lot of it is ok. But I’m the one with the incredible pain and I go through rages. Any help is appreciated. Anyway, back to the subject….I wish I had the talent to write a book because she really took advantage of a weak, vulnerable, sad and lonely man using techniques that anyone might fall for, if they aren’t careful.

  2. australian male
    March 26, 2010 at 10:50 am

    ohh dear, ,, i read the the link by dr tara ,
    i answered 70% yes of the questionare ,, although i,ve been single 3 months now ,out of a 5 year relationship , i,m mentally scared in a huge way
    i trust nobody ,, totally isolated myself with only 1 or 2 very selected close friends which i keep in touch ,, heres the worst part i,m still to scared to answer my phone unless i know who that is ,, my ex done great job in screwing up my head
    ,,although she is associating with people who i know ,,still holidaying where i go

    there are a few who have clicked on the ex”s personality ,, hard part is trying to get on with my life ,, heres the best part ,,
    no more headaches no stress ,, much less work ,,less drinking ,,so much more relaxed ,, after what i,ve been through ,, it”ll be long time before i start a relationship again
    anybody who”s in a similar situation GET OUT,, LEAVE !!! before you have a heart attack or something worse
    many thanks to this forum very supportive ,, THANK YOU

  3. MGH
    March 25, 2010 at 2:19 am

    Just had a sign made: NBPD with a RED CIRCLE and A LINE THRU IT!!

  4. Paul Wall
    March 24, 2010 at 4:37 am

    Just a point to ponder: One guy here mentioned he was dating a woman for two and a half months before he noticed how she was. At least he caught on and changed the scene. I know many who didn’t and grew to regret their positions later, too late to change their lives. Just as women need to know who their partner is, men do too. Considering how things like alimony and child custody are biased against men, we need to be alert for abusive partners because our kids and US deserve better.

    • Ms Reason
      March 24, 2010 at 6:04 pm

      You’re absolutely right, Paul. An ounce of prevention is worth a lifetime of cure. These women are like relationship cancer, and our overtly ‘politically correct’ system bends over backwards to wrongly punish the actual victims in these relations – the dads and the kids.
      If only more men learnt to detect early on the signs of abusive women vs. healthy women, so much heartache would be saved! Also, since BP/NP/HP women are experts at entrapment through fatherhood, they keep exponentially breeding, while the kinder women get left behind. This was a great article by Dr. Tara I’d read earlier:
      https://shrink4men.wordpress.com/2009/01/23/when-love-hurts-the-emotionally-abused-man/

  5. Ms Reason
    March 23, 2010 at 6:34 pm

    Dr. Tara,
    I’ve been lapping up all your great articles, both to forward to my male friends and to understand why some intelligent men keep going back to their BP/NP/HP exes, as I’ve had that painful experience in the past. But I do want to profusely apologize for a couple of my earlier posts here – due to the unintentional ‘formatting.’ I was writing them on my laptop Mac and they only seemed like narrow columns and each line contained at least 8 words. I was horrified today when I went on the site on my desktop PC and found that my response to Mike’s post now looked like an ultra-thin column with only 1 or 2 words per line! It must be looking different on a Mac vs. a PC. There is no ‘delete’ option so I couldn’t change it. I hope this is not the case on most computers, and I truly apologize for the un-aesthetic formatting this created in the comment section.
    In any case, your site is so wonderful – I’ve just posted it on my facebook wall post to help all my geeky and non-geeky male friends. It works for me too – since I did get diagnozed with a very ‘male’ brain last year (a predicament of most introverted rational-female-geeks,) so reading on therapy intended for men works more for me. Even while reading ‘men are from mars, women from venus’ I’d felt more like a man. So your site helps much more to heal from an ex-BP and also to decipher a tendency to get curious or want to rescue ‘broken’ men – the same way the men do to BP women. This site helps in preventing further mistakes and steering clear off vampires.

    Also, to the engineers on this site – I found ‘picture thinking’ helps in healing – you know, how most of us are visual thinkers? After my ex-BPD had broken my heart and cut it into bacon strips, I kept visualizing a whole happy, shiny heart within myself or alternately imagining myself melting like liquid mercury and then re-shaping after I’d ‘ejected’ all toxic pellets of him. And becoming whole and healthy again. I ‘visualized’ that my cup was full again inside and I was ready to give and love, and that helped. This forum is extremely helpful, Dr. Tara, my only regret is not having found this earlier.

    • jp
      March 23, 2010 at 8:27 pm

      I don’t think the formatting issue is PC v. Mac…it’s WordPress. It indents each reply until there’s nothing left but a narrow strip of background.

      • Ms Reason
        March 23, 2010 at 8:58 pm

        Thanks JP – the strip did get narrower – it just seems much more narrower in the PC…but now I’m thinking it might be screen resolution – as the mac had a lower and the PC had a 1280 x 1024 one and the strip seemed broader. Oh well! It’s funny, eh? how the ‘problem-solving’ kicks in both for computers and for BP people? Next time I’ll remember not to reply in ‘narrow’ columns.

  6. March 21, 2010 at 3:11 am

    I have to come back to this and read it again. I think reading it now for the first time has me to much in shock about how many things I actually went through could be understood. There is no way I’m going to see all of this clearly right now. Bookmarked.

    Wow, at least 2 of my exes fit that perfectly.

  7. March 19, 2010 at 3:09 pm

    You´re absolutely right! Everytime I feel a strong connection with a girl, i feel afraid of being streamrolled like in the past when I tried to please and be kind only to be mockered and dumped, NPDs and BPDs traits. MANY people turned homosexual or bitter against the opposite sex because of encounters with such vampires. I can really “love” a girl, but If I sense she´s playing or using me to show it off to her GFs, I become the biggest jerk ever and enforce my boundaries to protect myself. Have u seen the movie CLOSER, it portraits revenge after revenge that it´s disgusting. It´s not easy not being infected by those bites. Peace! : )

  8. Holy Order of Garlic
    March 18, 2010 at 11:23 pm

    It’s like getting trained for the Bastard Assassin School. First you get primed by her praising you for the “perfect” guy you are, then you may:

    a) Commit Hari-Kari: Murder your true self-never to return. “Love” is so good isn’t it? You are a full fledged servant now….since you are soooo “good” you are safe from any Assassination now..or are you?..or..
    b) Boot Camp: She endlessly tests your resolve to please her under the threat of pointing out that you are really a BASTARD if you don’t comply….training never ends if you have any “bastardliness” left in you…or…
    c) You wake up…in this case you murdered the good guy she “fell in love” with ..how dare you!..YOU are now a BASTARD ASSASSIN!

    Now sneak out Ninja Style and wear that badge with pride : )

  9. Recovering Alpha
    March 18, 2010 at 8:53 pm

    Lauren above said “These women do the same thing to their children.”

    Sad but true. My two oldest sons (15 and 12 yo) refuse to see their mother (we are now divorced and I was awarded 100% physical custody of them by family court decree). She accuses me (through mutual acquaintances) of sabotaging her relationship with the boys. That is not true. I remember talking with her when we were married over the past few years that if she continued to talk and act the way she did to these boys, they’d either rebel or tune her out. Now they live with me full time.

    The really sad part is that we also have a 3rd and 4th sons (6 and 2 yo) who we share 50% physical custody. The littlest one gives me hugs and kisses about every 5 minutes ALL DAY LONG. I don’t think she’s giving him his strokes.

    Anyways, gents out there reading this, if you want children do a substantial amount of vetting with your targeted mate BEFORE germinating your seed in her ground. It’s very tough emotionally to see your offspring dislike (hate?) their own mother. I feel partially responsible since I picked the (cold, barren, unsupportive) ground into which I a planted the seed …

  10. March 17, 2010 at 11:57 pm

    TRAITS:

    *Unstable/rapidly-shifting patterns of relating; hot/cold, come here/go away, push-pull dynamics.

    *Quick/intense involvement, premature conversations about living together, marrying or discussing names of future children. Pregnancy entrapment.

    *Attachment and abandonment fears, avoidant personality.

    *Abusive and rejecting emotionally, psychologically and/or physically.

    *Addiction to chaos and drama. Short-lived serene/harmonious periods.

    *Cognitive distortion or thought disordered. Strangely incongruent responses to your attempts to communicate openly or engage.

    *Commitment phobic, disrupts/runs away from closeness and intimacy.

    *Crazy-making interactions. Poor comprehension skills, lacks common sense.

    *A desperate need for attention/approval from you and others.

    *Dissociated, disconnected, shut-down, ‘checked out’ or numb.

    *Drug, alcohol and/or food abuse (eating disorders).

    *Expects you to be a mind-reader or mommy, and intuit his/her needs.

    *Extreme jealousy, and a need to separate you from all other attachments.

    *Inappropriately flirtatious with others, even in your presence.

    *Gaslighting; makes you doubt your perceptions, or think you’re going crazy.

    *Guilting and shaming you during and after the relationship; when anything’s gone wrong, it’s always your fault.

    *Highly manipulative and controlling.

    *Hoovering; subtle or obvious attempts to re-engage you, suck you back into their life, seduce and manipulate you, etc. BPD’s use pitiful outcries for help, or sneaky efforts to get to You through your kids, your friends or family.

    *Hypersexuality or asexuality (non-sexual).

    *Infantile behavior; tantrums, rageful outbursts, persistent baby-talk, etc.

    *Infidelity, extramarital affairs, ‘cheating’ on partner.

    *Inflated sense of self; grandiosity or false sense of entitlement.

    *Intense, irrational abandonment fears/concerns.

    *Kitchen-sinking; during your relational upsets, they bring up everything (but the kitchen sink) you’ve ever done ‘wrong’ and clobber you with it–whether it was resolved at an earlier time, or not! This derails problem solving.

    *Lack of remorse or empathy, and unwillingness to own their mistakes/flaws.

    *Lying and deceitfulness, mixed messages, self-contradicting.

    *Needy, clingy or overly dependent.

    *Only wanting/loving you when there’s distance–or they can’t have you.

    *Paradoxical emotional responses; when you love them more, they love you less. The closer you get, the more they need to distance.

    *Passive-aggression; acting it out, rather than talking it out.

    *Pervasive feelings of hopelessness, helplessness or pessimism.

    *Physical ailments, pain, allergies, diseases–even if very young.

    *Poor impulse control. Capable of volatile or violent behaviors. Vandalism.

    *Poor self-worth, insecurity, low self-esteem.

    *Projection; they assign their own deficits/faults, to you.

    *Rebound relationships are very common (the bed never gets cold).

    *Selective memory or recall of events pertaining to their screw-ups. When it comes to yours, his/her mind is like a steel trap!

    *Self-harm or self-mutilation; cutting/burning skin, picking at blemishes until there is significant damage to adjacent tissue, numerous piercings, tattoos, etc., poor or distorted body image.

    *Self-sabotage in personal and/or professional realms.

    *Sexual molestation or incest in childhood (which may not be remembered).

    *Significant lapses in childhood memory.

    *Splitting; idealizing or devaluing behaviors, love you/hate you, and black or white perceptions.

    *Stalking; following/shadowing you, incessant text or phone messages, etc.

    *Suicidal ideation and emotional blackmail; “I don’t want to go on living–I’ll kill myself if you leave me/don’t return,” etc.

    *Tricotillomania; an ongoing compulsion to pull out facial hair (eyelashes, eyebrows, etc.) or body hair. Considered a facet of self-mutilation.

    http://www.gettinbetter.com/anatomy.html

  11. March 17, 2010 at 8:02 pm

    Break me down = Make me fall in love with her

    • March 18, 2010 at 3:34 pm

      She´s just blowing this guy off. The stupid guy didn´t see the pattern and keeps coming back for more beating. He must be thikning “WTF is goiing on with this girl?”

  12. March 17, 2010 at 7:42 pm

    MS Reason, I study engineering and you are absolutely RIGHT ON. The BPD girl is SO alluring because most men in this field feel lonely (as they have to study hard and there´s so few girls in the room), and are very rational. So a very emotive girl is the complement these men crave, another brainy girl wouldn´t be so attractive. Besides that, we have the mistery of BPDs, they disappear, don´t answer your calls, know how to please and punish men. It´s incredible how they do this. There´s a book called THE ART OF SEDUCTION. READ IT, and you will be flabbergasted how bpds traits are like the ones described in this book. When I saw the HOT,COLD , ABSENCE, MIRRORING, I said “Someone is playing a game on me”.

    It was scary how deliberate the bpds acts were. It was as if she was following this book. She would do X and watch my reaction, she would say Y and see through the corner of her eyes. When I distanced from her I could see her desperation, the look in her eyes (the scared one) and the black stare (like she was shocked).

    ONce she said “I miss you baby”. I said “You want me close so you can slap me!”, and she said “owwwwww baby, you´re smart”. I´m currently working with this girl. She´s unbelievable, sometimes I see the bitch one who ways for any excuse to thrash you, other times, the helpless little girl (every one falls in love with this persona). She´s so entitled and believes everyone loves her. Actually they are OBSESSED with her because she runs the hot cold game. Her power is HUGE, I had one traffic accident because of her, you can´t think about anything else but her. I did my best to show her I´m not affected by her. This is driving her nuts!! The only way I could see the light in the fog was to distance from her. Whenever she comes close I “hold my breath”. It´s as if she knows what you´re thinking, they can read you like a book. I tried acting some personas to misguide her about Who I am, so she cannot trap me and I´m also using her against herself (for exeample, I said I don´t like girls with make-up, to purposefully put down her own attractiveness so I can resist her better! When I´m around she DOESN`T WEAR make up, and it´s not coincidence since she´s so vain and loves make-up).

    When I was “acting” tough she would put on the ultra little girl to break me down. When I was nice guy mode, she would act like a bitch to break me down too!

    Based on that I could see RIGHT THROUGH HER. “WTF is that?” “WHO is this girl”????
    She would wear the same clothes colors as mine and I would ask myself HOW DOES SHE KNOW IT??? I could see I was being watched all the time either by her or by her friends who would ask me where I was going after work. Once I was in a room and she went there and saw me, later a friend of mine went there to talk to me. Guess what, he was sent by her, I saw her looking at the end of the isle.

    I saw her going from man to man, testing her sexual power and leaving them behind. She would ask these men “would you be my BF?”, “You have a GF? Get rid of her, stay with me baby!”. When I ignored her attention grabs she would shake as if it was cold >>> A huge red flag started waving. Why would a girl care what a man thought about her, a man, who was basically a stranger? Why would she need the validation from such man? She literally throw herself at you so you can save or love her. The moment you do, she runs scared.

    She said she falls in love easily, and likes to know what men want. She said MEN, not a man. She wants to be desired by all yet possessed by none. In my mind they are indeed sociopathic, although they do it out of fear of abandonment.

    I have a little Bpd traits too like “knowing how to act in some situations” or “being moody”. When I went out with her for the first time, something inside me said “there´s something wrong, watch out, watch out”. It´s awesome to see through all the BS, and remain a ROCK. YEt, she won´t give up until she breaks me down. I´m up for the challenge.

    • Mellaril
      March 17, 2010 at 9:53 pm

      Hmmm, I’m an engineer and was a “fixer.” I never associated my career choice with my choice in women but maybe they’re related. It may be true but I find it difficult to accept that as a class or profession we are any more susceptible to predatory women than any other segment of the population as a whole. But, who knows? I worked in an organization where 95% of the 400+ people there were of the Meyers-Briggs ISTJ category.

      If you’re conciously playing a game with someone you seriously believe is BPD, good luck. I thought I was smarter than my ex-gf and she still managed to remove a few internal organs before I got out.

      My money’s on her.

      • March 17, 2010 at 10:19 pm

        Lol. She´s the 3rd I found you know. I´m sure because the first one I met at Uni screwed me HARD because I was naive and fell in love with her sweet persona. The next day she was igonring me, treating me like shit, and I was like “WTF???” and the idiot started chasing her and she becaming more bitchy. The other day she brought a new guy and started ignoring me. Then I concluded she was trying to crucify me. I got depressed and see how flabbergased I was!! She went to me and asked “What happened?? You look so sad?? Can I help you???” Holy cow!!!!!

        After that, I gave her the cold shoulder, guess what? She CALLED me with a sweet voice. I was SHOCKED, “WHAT??” If I had pissed her why was she calling me?”

        In the end I didn´t know who I was anymore. Two years later, after falling the second time (this time was not so hard because the girl as a HPD not a BPD), I said to myself SOMETHING IS WRONG! After that I had the eureka moment and read everytihng about PDs.

        NOW I have loaded ammunition to protect my heart, just like NEO who stops the bullet with one hand. When I went fighting head to head (mind games) with the third (Full BPD) there was a stalemate. The ultimate way to win is walking away for good. I`m doing this “temporarily” as I see her almost everyday. I had traveled and pretty much forgotten her yet when I saw her again, she´d turn the charm again.

        Once, I heard her saying about two new guys “Oh two new toys”, mind you!!!! I don´t know if it conscious but It seems she hates men in general and has pleasure destroying their soul.

        I can tell you I frustrated the hell out of her. She was flirting in front of me and I didn´t even look at her. lol
        She has lost a lot of weight as she is feeling powerless and vulnerable because she can´t control me like the other chumps who beg for sex.

        • March 17, 2010 at 10:30 pm

          But Mell you´re right! A sucker thinks he knows it all and cannot be fooled. That is his fatal flaw. Yet remember that this is valid for BOTH players. I have the upper hand of not only knowing her game upfront but also of having this website as a guide, while she doesn´t!! She doesn´t even know who she is, I DO!! BRING IT ON.

          I once called her a dangerous SNAKE and she started laughing and said she was gonna slap me! lol.

      • Ms Reason
        March 18, 2010 at 2:51 am

        I’d never advise ANY man to play with the psycho wrath of a BPD woman. Or a BPD-NPD man. RUN!

        I’m sort of an ‘engineer-who-designs’ (don’t want to give the exact profession due to privacy, but it involves both art & technology & buildings) so I work with a lot of engineers. Most of them are INTP and ISTJs in Briggs-Meyers. As you can see, the former are obsessed with puzzles, the latter with following commands! See how a BPD woman would salivate at that combo!

        As for myself – I’m an INTJ with an insanely high brain-systematization quotient.(brain-maleness or ‘technical’ brain) I didn’t rest until I’d logically found the reason of my own attraction to mysterious non-engineer men who needed ‘fixing’ while my nice-guy engineer friends would be left at ‘buddy’ and ‘bro’ status. Why? Because of the ‘puzzle’ solving obsession. And when I found about the truth behind ‘mysterious’ vampires – bingo! I realized the same craziness attracts the men to BPD women.

        You’re right – as a group, engineers are not necessarily the only target group. I was only narrating my own personal experience from my work place. (The latest victim – an architect – has his heart, life, car and computer broken – due to her cheating and of course, it’s ‘all his fault’ and then her suicide threats. Poor guy – he’s desperately looking for backup files.) But after my own research I found the two types of men who were BPD attractors were NPD men (which most good-hearted geeks aren’t) and the geeky puzzle-solving-highly intelligent type. It is the second one who puts in more kindness, tolerance, following orders, phenomenal effort to make the relation ‘work’ and they are the ones who usually hurt and suffer the most. They’re usually introverted too.

        I say in the case of these crazy women – better to read books about them before, and only then dare to open the cover. But whatever, never judge them by their charming, manipulative cover. It’s not worth it. For every crazy woman you spend time behind ‘solving’ the good, sweet ones are being taken away from the dating pool.

        I’ve had only two relations – the first with the crazy BP man, the second was calm with an ISTJ – but the poor guy had been bitten by his XBP. But due to my engineer buddies’ tales, I got heaps and heaps of insight into crazy relations. Now before I plunge into anything, I’m going to educate myself thoroughly. Better to be safe than sorry! Being a rare INTJ woman has its benefits. ‘Thinking’ before emoting.

    • Ms Reason
      March 18, 2010 at 3:15 am

      Mike – be careful, man! Decipher her by reading a book on her traits first. And honestly – if she’s with so many men, I’d watch out for STDs!
      If I were a guy, I’d be more attracted to a woman whose sense of self, confidence and self-worth comes from WITHIN herself. One who doesn’t see the need to use or manipulate others. Women who indulge in games and need men to ascertain their ‘worth’ I’ve observed usually have a huge black hole inside. And trying to fill it with your love, caring, kindness ends up with you exhausted!

      Have fun, but beware! And whatever you do, DO not equate this roller coaster ride to love. BPD women are so easy – the way they sleep around. I’d say a greater challenge for a man is to get a confident, stable, self-assured, non-slutty, adventurous, kind and beautiful inside and out woman. A real life Lara Croft. Now that’s a trophy – not some easy insecure man eater.

    • Ms Reason
      March 18, 2010 at 3:18 am

      Mike – be careful, man! Decipher her by reading a book on her traits first. And honestly – if she’s with so many men, I’d watch out for STDs!
      If I were a guy, I’d be more attracted to a woman whose sense of self, confidence and self-worth comes from WITHIN herself. One who doesn’t see the need to use or manipulate others. Women who indulge in games and need men to ascertain their ‘worth’ I’ve observed usually have a huge black hole inside. And trying to fill it with your love, caring, kindness ends up with you exhausted!
      Have fun, but beware! And whatever you do, DO NOT equate this roller coaster ride to real love. BPD women are so easy – the way they sleep around. I’d say a greater challenge for a man is to get a confident, stable, self-assured, non-slutty, adventurous, kind and beautiful inside and out woman. A real life Lara Croft. Now that’s a trophy – not some easy insecure man eater.

      • March 18, 2010 at 1:25 pm

        I am the brainy type too! But I am a prick with this bpd when she´s coercing me into buying things for her or to do favors for her. I tell her “I´m not gonna change for you, get over it, I´m brute”. She gets pissed goes away, but COMES BACK. It´s impressive, it´s as if she doesn´t want but comes back anyawy. Tries to call my attention at all costs. I purposefully give the least attention possible, she freaks out. I have a VERY analitic mind, dealing with her is like dealing with very complex machinery. I have the book “Personality-Disorders-In Modern Life” -Theodore-Millon and read it almost entirely (I noticed I´m schizoid). Her gaslighing neither confuses me nor scares me anymore. I know they turn the tables all the time. SCREWED are the guys who are married because they will be blackmailed by the bpd. The guy either tells her he loves her (so she wins) or gives in to her blackmail (I´ll tell your boss, wife you´re having sex with me) she wins again. Millon says the highest incident of HIV is in bpd girls who practice unsafe sex due to their lack of self control.

        Once I had sex with a “suspect” of bpd. She wanted it without condon, I said NO. Later she wanted to have kids with me!!! Sh!T, again it was as a way of not letting me go.

        About the anger of BPD, poor are the suck ups, her orbiters, they will suffer her wrath because I´m far from her. It´s drivin her nuts the fact that she´s not breaking me down.

        • Mellaril
          March 18, 2010 at 2:16 pm

          Mike,

          I have to ask what the purpose of the game is? If you “win” by whatever criteria that may be do you get an “I Beat the Cluster B!” T-shirt or do you paint a little “B” or “N” on your car like a figher pilot?

        • shrink4men
          March 18, 2010 at 2:18 pm

          Hi Mike,

          You’re playing with live grenades. If you know what these women are why, oh why are you wasting one precious minute of your life with them?

          Is it revenge? Do you feel powerful effing with them? I understand the desire to punish the one who originally hurt you. These women inflict a lot of damage and it’s natural to want to hurt them back. However, in a sense, you’re sinking down to their level. Except that you’re conscious of your actions. You consciously know what you’re doing and are taking pleasure toying with them.

          You’re playing with fire and may not be as in control as you think. If you lie down with dogs, you will get up with fleas. Please reconsider these games you’re playing.

          Best,
          Dr Tara

          • March 18, 2010 at 3:09 pm

            Ok, so what should I do?

            • shrink4men
              March 18, 2010 at 3:19 pm

              Hi Mike,

              End the relationship. Don’t give her or those like her the time of day. There are healthy women capable of grown-up relationships out there, whether it’s committed or casual. Clean the garbage out of your life. I can’t bear being around people like this for one second. They’re absolutely toxic. Having to always be on your guard and 20 steps ahead is exhausting. Other than the thrill of the cat and mouse game you’re playing and crazy BPD sex, what are you getting out of this? Life is too short to waste it in the muck.

              Best,
              Dr T

              • March 18, 2010 at 3:31 pm

                Well, I agree with you. The whole point is show her that she can´t manipulate me like the others, that ìm pretty aware of her games. I don´t expect anything from her, actually I expect the worst. My contact with her is minimun. She´s the one trying to hoove me back by looking sad, disappointed, “save mE” behaviors. When I ignore those antics, she gets frustrated. Isn´t it what I´m supposed to do? I´m simply enforcing my boundaries, and she´s doing whatever possible to enter in my castle.

                Her game is sick, I know of a guy who said “I want so see your beautiful body”, and she said “Dream about me baby, I´ll make you happy”. This is a guy who was on her side and did everythign to please her, they had sex sometimes. Now that´s how she treats him.

                I woouldn´t say I´m playing games at this point. I´m just being a lillte of an “a$$” and minding my own business.

        • Ms Reason
          March 18, 2010 at 3:36 pm

          Mike,

          LISTEN to Mell and Dr. Tara. She is a real-life angel of wisdom.

          What you are indulging in is suicide, not a challenge. Do you realize that you’ve already let the enemy win since your first heartbreak – by ‘tainting’ you and making you stoop to their level? To me, the best personal victory I had with my BPD -ex was that he could not infect me, and I didn’t lose my intrinsic sense of self, kindness, self-confidence and only came out stronger. To have walked away from his manipulations by saying ‘Frankly my dear, I don’t give a damn anymore.’

          Read Dr. T’s earlier great articles on how men who’ve been in these abusive relations can de-program themselves to enter relations with healthy women. And not convert to an abuser themselves. You’re not becoming ‘better’ by playing her games, you’re only becoming infected and losing yourself.

          You seem to be still young. But a series of relations with these crazies will mean that some day you’ll end up breaking the heart of a sweet well-meaning healthy girl by playing games with her when you finally meet a non-BPD woman, or you’ll have converted into a player yourself and intelligent, good-hearted and truly beautiful (in and out) women will walk away from you after their first assessment on dates by sighing inside ‘that guy’s tainted.’ Do you want that? That’s the day your BPD women will be laughing in victory because the good women who they hate will no longer want to touch you. I mean this. I get a lot of offers for dates myself but I’m careful to smell out before if the man has been tainted with too many ex-BPs and not tried to recover on his own. I want to be a partner, not a free-shrink to him to exorcise the stink and poison of his toxic exes. It’s exhausting.

          Life is too short playing games with crazy sluts. Why don’t you instead try and seek healthy relations and see what greater strength it takes for the women who are GENUINELY good and kind? Follow Dr. T’s advice : If you sleep with dogs you’ll get fleas.

          We’re your well wishers here. Ask yourself: if you need to vent out here and read so much to have a relation, is that really a ‘good’ relation? In a healthy relation you’d be having a lot of calm, fun, caring, love and openness without having to manipulate or strategize so much. Get out of your BP-obsession before it’s too late and you’ve been completely infected. Then you lose. Your victory as I mentioned is not letting them destroy your real self – that boy who once believed that healthy beautiful love does exist. It does. Seek THAT out instead of wasting your time. Use this site to be able to weed out the bad ones you meet so you can find the good ones, don’t use this is to stoop to the level of BPs by getting game-cheats.

          If you’d been my colleague – my only advice would be – MIke, LISTEN to Dr. T’s message to you & follow her wisdom as a gift for your healthy future.

        • Mellaril
          March 18, 2010 at 4:39 pm

          For a long time I thought that because my marriage lasted longer than my ex-gf’s and I went on to have a good marriage and a family I had somehow beaten her. I don’t believe that anymore. There weren’t any winners or losers in our relationship, only participants. When I look back at her now I see an attractive, charming, intelligent, sensual, and often funny woman who had the potential to be everything a man could have ever wanted in a woman. I never detected the slightest hint of malice in her which only made it more difficult to leave. For whatever reason, she seemed to lack the capacity for the trust and intimacy necessary to make a real relationship work and it played out in negative ways.

          Take Dr. T’s advice. Like she and Ms Reason said, you need to let it go. At best you’ll mess yourself up. At worst, you’ll hurt an innocent party. I know how that one works, too. I hurt someone very badly whose only action was to come between me and my ex-gf at the wrong time. I totally mishandled that situation and I hurt her deeply. I don’t have a lot of regrets about my time with my ex but if I had one thing to do over it would have been to not hurt the other girl.

          • mike
            March 18, 2010 at 8:05 pm

            guys, a friend of mine who was flirting with her, was in a state of shock,i dont know wha happened! I wish i had his pic to show it! About her it has been a hard training course which will either break u down or make u stronger! Im 90% intact and being indifferent to her. When she calls me idiot i laugh

            • Ms Reason
              March 18, 2010 at 11:55 pm

              Mike – sorry to lay it down as it is: but you are not intact as you claim to be. The fact that you are obsessing about every move she is making and spending time reporting it – proves you’re not only not indifferent, but the better part of your intelligence is spent obsessing about some not-really-too-impressive and quite an ordinary girl. Instead of doing something creative with your own life and seeking healthy relations, you’re beginning to sound more and more like a chick who is obsessed with a jerk of an ex. Sorry. But have to say it like a dude.
              A great gal flies airplanes, enjoys the outdoors, is warm, healthy, cheerful, reads good books. Your girl sounds very toxic and unhealthy. And cheap and easy. Thank you though – I’ll have to watch out in my own workforce that the engineers are spending more time on their work and less obsessing about BP girls.

              I wish you the best and productive therapy. Also, if you can listen to Norah Jones’ song ‘Cold Cold heart.’ That’s how some day a sweet innocent well-meaning girl will feel when you enshrine your memories of BPs.I fear you’ll break the heart of a truly nice girl some day.

              As for the ‘mystery’ of the Bs and Ns – behind the mask is a big gaping hole. It’s all smoke and mirrors. I challenge you to find an authentic truly good girl and figure out the mystery of what makes a woman of substance. Only then will you find the Trinity to your Neo, and the Uhura to your Spock. The more time you’re wasting behind this really boring bitchy woman, I’m sorry – the more uninteresting you become to clever kind good girls.

              Dr. T already gave you her words of wisdom. But looks like your unhealthy obsession continues. Can you live up to a far greater challenge – of finding how great a fun relation feels with an emotionally healthy girl? You might then be wishing you hadn’t spent so much time behind this toxic sample. Also, it makes a man stupidly boring if he is constantly narrating about each move of a sick girl. Show your intelligence by being a master of your own brain and inventing something that will rock the world! Then it will be putting all your energy into good use.

              Be well.

              • March 19, 2010 at 2:09 am

                SLAP on my face uh ms Reason! lol.

                I´ll stop posting about her. What I´m saying is that I´m having fun watching her antics. You´re right about me being a jerk, this will really take me over like the ring in the movie the lords of the rings. I just posted here so others could see a narration of what happens when you bump into them.

                I´ll keep “having fun” seeing her “games” but AS I SAID, I´m keeping my distance. I won´t bore you with her stories anymore. I´ll keep it to myself. Just something, I´ve closed some deals and making money so I´m not as obsessed as you say!! lol.

                Thanks Tara!!

                • Ms Reason
                  March 19, 2010 at 2:59 am

                  It’s okay to vent out your frustrations Mike….as for the ‘jerk’ statement – I didn’t mean you. I meant you know how when sometimes men complain when they went on a date with a girl and all she did was go on and on about every move of some crazy ex? well, similarly, a guy who does the same ends up sounding more sissy than suave. That’s all.

                  I was just trying to help you understand that there are many sassy, intelligent, smokin’ hot women there who are also kind and good-hearted. A woman with true authentic self-worth doesn’t need to sleep around or cheat, nor play games to ‘fill’ her inner void. I have seen and met healthy girls like this and make it a point that my own girl friends are women of substance who have found a good blend between feminism and feminity. The ones who are smart AND kind and loving. Now being on a quest to seek that healthy love is more of an adventure, wouldn’t you say? Mr. (insert the character played by Viggo Mortensen.)

                  Also, most BP/NP/HP girls used to be the mean girls in school. I know this because I was a school geek (into jazz, theatre, good grades) and was bullied A LOT by these manipulative girls. It was nasty and very hurtful. It took me a lot of strength but instead I stayed strong and focussed, became a professional success in my career, my geeky looks genetically changed by 16 (and I even ended up becoming a print model during my uni days), I later started my own design firm, gave talks, seminars, won awards, traveled around the world, and developed a strong sense of self, joy and balance. As for the meanest high school bully?
                  I found out last year that after a series of more meanness, cheating around and sleeping around, and despite getting a good education degree, she committed suicide in her late 20s(!!!) and was always angry and depressed! It meant she truly had BPD. I felt sad for her family, but understood that bullies and bitchy girls are really unhealthy inside.

                  So, these girls bully the kind girls early on and then they play games with men. There is nothing clean about them. And in the workplace, trust me, some really innocent men have been slapped by fake sexual harrassment lawsuits by them, so even there one should be careful.

                  Good luck to you – and I wish you a happy healthy relation with a lovely, warm, kind, open girl. (And do listen to that song I recommended so you never end up breaking the heart of a loving and giving girl like a BP broke yours. That’s how the mean girls still take out the revenge on the good ones.) So cheers – and try and unravel the mystery of what makes healthy, secure women who they are despite all they themselves might have faced in life and still come out laughing and warm.

                  • March 19, 2010 at 12:00 pm

                    Ms REason. THanks for your kindness. Maybe I´m sounding bitter in the other posts but, I´m not frustrated by her, she IS. Actually I am RELIEVED that I could see her mask slip. The psycho had set a trap with my friend. They would be having sex and my friend called me to go to his apt. She wanted to f*ck me up. I said “I´m comming” and never went there lol. The next day I said to him in front of her “YOU ARE THE MAN, let´s go to the beach MY FRIEND?” The look on her face was PRICELESS.

                    I play hardball honey. I`m indeed kind but I can be ruthless with these kind of people. Actually I “nexted” both of them.

                    I love crushing these snakes. If she dares do something to mess with me, it will backfire.

                    lol. Play the fool to fool the fool, as they say.

                    : )

                    • Ms Reason
                      March 19, 2010 at 2:37 pm

                      Use your armour with care and prudence, I guess, then.
                      On some level I can understand your need to be armed against the dangerous. Reading helps. I know when I was trying to build my own armour after the male BPD – I felt I’d converted from an ‘Amelie’ to a ‘Lara Croft.’ But then, I realized later that never giving up my inner softness and compassion and understanding that all monsters are created by some abuse (unless they are just born spoilt and evil) was a saner approach. That way I could stay kind yet aloof. I hope you are good at your narc-detection. I’ll tell you a funny and sad story that happened to a girl friend of mine. She was a sweet kind but whipper-smart geeky-but-well-groomed girl. After some painful expereinces with N men, she’d ‘educated’ herself thoroughly to meet fire with fire. Then she met this geeky and brilliant man who – due to his experience with Bs had done the same. After 2 dates where they really connected well and had great chemistry too, due to their suspicions based on past experiences, each were acting testy, and ended up thinking the other was an N & B, and so wrongly let lose verbal nuclear weapons at each other at the smallest slight in some revengefest and ended up both incredibly wounded & hurt. After some crazy hurting and healing they found out 2 years later by fluke that they both were innocent geeks who had become overvigilant for Ns & Bs after their experience and each had become the others’ mistaken colateral damage. They are now each in boring but stable relations with other people but secretly wonder how wonderful it would have been if they’d not been so defensive and been together since their connection and chemistry had been real and they spoiled it with too much suspicion.

                      So good luck & may your detection glasses be safe and kind, and not paranoid, and best wishes for a future healthy relation. You have been lucky that these resources are available to you now – ’cause so many unlucky men in the past ended up in marriage as so little research on Bs & N women were done.

                      I’ll tell you the great inconsistency. Irrational people cannot be dealt with rational weapons. At the end it’s just not worth it. When they can’t beat you, they end up suing you with false rape/harrassment charges, smear campaigns and set you up. The best way to keep your sanity and intellect still remains in washing your hands off them. I read on philosophy and that helped even more. Just raising myself to a higher level where those Bs & Ns on a lower level of being no longer bothered me, nor could reach me.

                      Live strong and happy, and may you never become a misogynist.

                      :)

  13. Ms Reason
    March 17, 2010 at 5:10 pm

    Dear Dr. T

    What an excellent site you have made! Truly! Not just for men who have had to face the brunt of psychotic women but also for gentle good-hearted women who had to face the misconceptions of ‘women’ created by such women when they fell in love with men who’d had the BPD/NPD experience. I’m a woman working in a very male environment – tons of engineers and other geeky/nerdy good-hearted types, and several with the naivete of understanding human manipulation which comes with those who have mild Asperger’s type technical brains. Being another geeky-but-well-dressed woman there, I became a confidante to many of those men. I could not understand how the relatively socially naive men always ended up with these crazy BPD women! I’d become the unofficial free shrink for my male friends and would hear first hand accounts of the abuse they would face. They were awful! The cheating, lying, manipulations, drama, stealing their files, trapped into pregnancies – on and on. It was sad. I would wonder – how did these smart, kind men get hooked by the vampires? Then I had the ‘aha’ moment….male engineers study in an environment where there are very few girls so they don’t see a vast type. The few girls in engineering – who are usually straightforward and uncomplicated – pair up early and get taken. Furthermore, technical-minded men have a craving to ‘fix’ and ‘repair’ things and love puzzles. Therefore they become easy targets for the manipulative mysterious BPD women who lay the rules and after the initial charms flog the men like work horses and use them. Add to it the ‘new’ rules which whip men into docile niceness thanks to all the excess women’s ‘lib’ which they use unfairly. And you have hoards of really nice men who have been mistreated by these crazy women!

    Thanks to your site, I have now forgone my free shrink services at work – and sent this out to all the engineers who had to face the brunt of these horrible women. I myself had a crazy manipulative BPD first boyfriend who had a NPD mom. It was HELL! I got out of it after 18 months – and like many men on this site – it took time before I could relax around a healthy giving man and not be afraid for the other shoe to drop. Of course my XBP – like his woman counterparts, tried every trick and mushy mails to try to sabotage my new relation, but instinctively, I used to follow the no contact rule, reminding myself of all the abusive things he had done. Later I read about narcissists, borderlines and am now able to help both men and women. But Dr. T – your site is the BEST! I wish to recommend it to all my male friends and all the nice good-hearted gentle book-worm type girls I know who have paid the price of being with men with BPD exes, because it takes time for the men to adjust to their kindness since they equate drama, threats, eggshells and fear to ‘love.’

    A poster ahead had asked why do so many intelligent and often intellectual men fall for such women? You’ve written correctly in a post the target group of these women – gifted, giving, kind men. I truly second that seeing it first hand at work. Geeky men – and I mean this in a good way – I like geeky men in the sense those who are technically efficient, intellectual, have ethics and are kind do not understand female and often human politics too well, aware of world politics and wrongly think that women’s rights in the mid-east is the same as women’s rights for north american women – and therefore all women are ‘victims’ (something the BP women use CONSTANTLY). They like to find ‘solutions’ and mysteries and puzzles fascinate them. That’s why they are easy to manipulate by these ‘broken’, ‘dark’, ‘mysterious’ women who they think they can ‘fix.’ Unfortunately, other kind geeky girls also like the geeky intellectual man. But now these men often have a skewed perspective of how a healthy woman operates. It is very sad….I once dated a man who had been out of a crazy relation. And though I’m considered a smart, beautiful woman and his ex was far less educated and also not very attractive, the ‘pattern’ she had created and the ‘rescue’ games (which he did not feel with me because though I have been through many things in life I don’t like throwing out my problems to hook pity) had had their toll and he actually found it emasculating that I didn’t create a crisis every 2 days for him to solve! He had related ‘rescuing’ and ‘fixing’ to love and because I was self-sufficient, even though we had a calm, fun relation, he could not find the same bond and love-pain he felt with his ex. How sad! I did love him but had to sadly let go.

    Spot on about the cult tactics too. I’ve read (and seen) many priests themselves suffer from NPD and it’s alarming how the religious recruitment tactics are similar to those operated by relationship vampires.

    Your site is absolutely wonderful. You really are an angel. Keep up the great work, Dr. T and don’t let any meanie deter you! You should write a book. It is high time good hearted men know that good hearted emotionally healthy women do exist and that crazy women are not the norm. There are pop books which now even advise ‘nice’ women to ‘act’ bitchy as bitchy women tend to draw healthy men. This is reinforced more by the TV dramas where women with issues are rewarded and gamorized and portrayed as victims and heroines while those who are strong and kind are considered boring. (Most of this happens because most screen writers and artists are magnets to borderline women.) How sad!
    How about a full blown description in a pop psychology way of how borderline, narcissists et al operate – a book for men – a must – have when they turn 18? It would save so much heartache and time. Also, it is important to differentiate asperger’s men from narcissistic men. The latter are psychopathic and feel no empathy, the former are very kind underneath but don’t know how to express empathy. The BPD women are able to draw it out of their geeky demeanors. They take the longest to heal, as I can see amongst engineers. Perhaps that’s why they bury themselves more into machines ;-)

    I think BPD/NPD et al will keep getting more manipulative, but those whose brains are more logical, rational and giving can get smarter! Think of it – those technical minded men on this blog – the same brains we can use for solving complex math, computer, electrical and structural problems – once you have deciphered the code of these women you’ll never get trapped again. And also learn to distinguish between truly good – hearted women and the fakes. Watch if a woman is a little shy, if she has a history of being kind to animals, to people…if she takes pleasure in simple joys of life and if she doesn’t complain about everyone in her past all the time nor tries to boost your ego with the ‘rescue’ line. Chances are that kind girl might be the real good one. Take time – and beware the wolves in sheep’s clothing.

    I’m tired of the twisted women rewarded and understood for all their issues, their ‘pain’ (give me a break – take a trip to Afghanistan or other Muslim countries and you’ll know what real pain and lack of freedom of women truly is! And BP women – don’t use the freedom of women we have in America to manipulate and use in relations – women’s lib here has been abused by BPD women ) their dramas, their lies – when the real good-hearted women are not recognized for their inner strength, for not crying, manipulating, begging to be rescued and to actually be calm, stable and giving. What a topsy-turvy world it is indeed. There was a time I was so exasperated listening to my colleagues tales of woes, I’d though – if they fall for these BPD/NPD tricks and ignore the really nice girls, they deserve what they got! But then kindness and logic overcame me, and sites as yours gives me hope that men who have suffered in these relationships can heal before the damage to their heart becomes permanent.

    Great job, Dr. T! A true heart angel! Best wishes, strength and many thanks your way! Hope you write a book soon and to all the men on this blog – help make it a best seller if she does it!

    • Verbal
      March 17, 2010 at 5:57 pm

      Ms Reason, do you have any sisters who are single? :D

      • Ms Reason
        March 24, 2010 at 6:15 pm

        Thank you Verbal. Unfortunately my sister is a big-time ‘narcissist’ which is where I understood I got my ‘training’ in childhood to put up with HPs and Ns. And why I myself became introverted and developed ‘fix-it’ tendencies. I cut relations with her 2 years back after endless acts of kindness and understanding from my end to no avail. Doing so has not only helped me mentally, but put me on the path of looking for healthy relations in my love life too. However, I do have many kind, intelligent, rational women friends (mostly in engineering, architecture and the health care profesisons) and have made it a point in life to make sure all my women friends are emotionally healthy, positive women. Often our ‘tolerance’ for Ns and Bs come from family members or even friends, and once I realized it was my sister (and she was a big bully & manipulates her husband too) I was able to detach myself and realize that I didn’t have to tolerate the abuse of N & B women and men either.And also keep an eye on any manipulative exes in their past.
        Best wishes to you. Isn’t this a wonderful site?

        • Verbal
          March 25, 2010 at 3:47 am

          Ms Reason, I am sorry to hear of your estrangement from your sister. While cutting her off no doubt provided you some relief, I’m sure it must have also left a void. Though she is disordered, you probably have some fond memories of times you shared with her when she was behaving like a “normal” person.

          This is indeed a wonderful site. I am glad that a few women such as yourself contribute to it, braving the “for men” label. As one engineer to another, keep solving the problem!

          • Ms Reason
            March 25, 2010 at 4:20 am

            Kind of you, Verbal. But nah – after years of trying-to-make-it-work I’ve found great solace in letting her go and can’t stand manipulative, vindictive shallow girls I’ve come across in life who use ‘save-me’ tactics. I had my final ‘closure’ by venting out my frustrations at these women (and my sister) under this great article by Dr.Tara. It was SO therapeutic!I’ve always felt like ‘one-of-the-guys’ (though I definitely don’t look like one) and so Dr.Tara’s non-sappy, witty, straightforward style is perfect for my own therapy and ‘male-brain’. Cheers!
            https://shrink4men.wordpress.com/2009/07/27/how-emotionally-abusive-women-control-you-the-fear-of-loss-and-the-need-for-approval/#comment-6697

            • Verbal
              March 25, 2010 at 5:05 am

              Very powerful comment there, Ms. Reason. It really reveals how sane women such as yourself can be victimized by proxy by these disordered women who work their insidious magic on the men in your life. The misery they cause expands by degrees of separation to people they don’t even know.

    • Gooberzzz
      March 17, 2010 at 7:17 pm

      Nice message Ms. Reason. My sister is undiagnosed BPD, and my brother-in-law works as an industrial engineer, so I can relate strongly to the dynamic you presented.

  14. Myself Again
    March 16, 2010 at 7:41 pm

    BTW how odd, I have been there and done that with the Police! Dr. T is right, there are very few Police officers that can see through it! One even told me once, because she was apparently putting off her seduction, “Bet I have you wondering what her and I are up to while I have your ass in jail tonight?” -He later returned after she went into an unprovoked rage physically attacked my face with her long fingernails and took me to jail. (And that was just the first arrest I am ashamed to admit.)

  15. Myself Again
    March 16, 2010 at 7:37 pm

    OMG, Dr. T, I have you to Thank, (and all the others who post their experiences) for being able to break free from this cycle of abuse. I facetiously wonder though, since you’ve apparently either been a fly on the wall,or my shadow for these past 18 years, (from the night of her seduction) to the present, why didn’t I get this 2″ x 4″ before now!? I have been NC for about a month, waiting anxiously for a divorce, and physically my psychosematic “ailments”, (neck pain, stomach upset, etc.) have all virtually disappeared! I turn here daily, but it is solid in my head, and my gut, and my heart, (and my neck!), what I need to do, and how I can live after 16 years of attempted emotional destruction and manipulation! And it doesn’t take another person in my life to do it, it only took getting to know me again and re-establishing the friendships and family ties that she spent most of the time trying to break. GOD BLESS YOU DOCTOR T! -And all others going through this or breaking free!

  16. how odd
    March 16, 2010 at 3:04 pm

    Oh yeah, I had to add, I love the “If you clean the whole house really well tonight we can have sex” Guess what I cleaned the whole house…. we didn’t. She also called me a selfish bastard for pointing out that she promised me birthday sex and renegged on it. SHe had the gall to tell me that I was a dick for making her feel bad….WTF? Well excuse me for pointing out that you made and broke yet another promise…. Why oh why does she think that it’s ok to deny the one thing in a relationship that she would end ours over if I got somewhere else…? I don’t want another woman I want my wife, but I am unsure if I am even really attracted to her any more….

    • shrink4men
      March 16, 2010 at 3:13 pm

      Hi how odd,

      She continues to treat you this way because she can. She knows you’re not going anywhere. There are no consequences to her treating you badly. In fact, your frustration and the hurt look in your eyes every time she sandbags you is a reward.

      Why are you still paying for counseling that she has hijacked? Why don’t you refuse to clean her mess up if she doesn’t treat you with common courtesy and honor her promises?

      Her threats to call the police on you should scare you to death and mobilize you to get out of that relationship ASAP. Do you know what will happen if she calls the cops on you—even if she’s the one who hit or threw something at you? The cops will haul you away. If you aren’t able to leave this relationship yet—her dying father is just another convenient excuse—I’d invest in a small voice-activated digital recorder that you keep on your person at all times.

      Because when she calls the police, it will be her word against yours. Even with evidence (a recording of what happened) the cops still may arrest you, but this way you’ll have a fighting chance in court later on.

      Sorry to be tough on you, but come on, man. Your life is in jeopardy. Take control over your life back.

      Kind Regards,
      Dr T

      • Keiichi
        March 16, 2010 at 9:53 pm

        Dr Tara,

        This is so very true. When dealing with women like this it’s best to understand what could happen if not careful.

        My ex girlfriend got upset with me because I didn’t meet her someplace, when we had never even talked about me being there. Previously we had met there once a week over several weeks. Although only after talking about it first, and her inviting me. She was highly emotional about me not being there, and didn’t understand why I wasn’t. When I told her that we never talked about me being there, she told me that I should have known that she want me there. I didn’t want to show up without her asking me to be there and leave a opening for her to accuse me of stocking behavior. The after effects of me not being there are way easier to deal with then then the other possibilities.

      • how odd
        March 17, 2010 at 12:51 pm

        Thanks for the advice dr. Tara, I had considered getting a voice recorder already but will definitely do so now. I have also arranged for some individual councelling unfortunately I have to go through EAP since I cannot afford standard councelling. This means I have to go to the same guy. If I get railroaded in a private session about being more sensitive I am dumping this guy for sure. But since we have only been to two sessions together so far, I wonder if he will take my concerns seriously one on one. I came home last night to her talking about moving to another state to become a police officer….. I almost screamed out NO! (Besides the obvious reasons I think she shouldn’t be a cop with her condition), she wants me to stay with teh kids here in my home town while she goes off to another city and state to go to police academy. All the while I get to stay and be a single dad, who already works 60 hours a week so I can support my family and the job I want in my life. ( I am a tattoo artist, unfortunately that means you need to suppliment your income as the proffesion can be unpredictable.) I also might add she has outright said the words “I let you persue your dream” oddly enough her sick father said something similar as a way to prove to me (I guess in his head) that she loved me. I didn;t have the heart to tell a dying man that was obsurd and that he should be ashamed of himself for breaking her so badly. I am starting to set more clear boundries, and wonder if this will ever change. But I doubt it, most of all I am so afraid for my children, I don’t want them growing up like this. So far, of late I have just been detatching myself emotionally with her. We have another councelling session tomorrow in which I will be openly telling her that I am working ont hispart of me that desperately wants acceptance, and that if she wants to continue an honest and committed relationship based in mutual respect that she will need to start working on herself to. Here is the catch, if she doesn’t….. well I am gone. I can’t help but wonder if this is just as futile though….. It’s like I know I need to leave but she has her talons in me in so many aspects that I am terrified of leaving… Maybe I should find myself a better personal counceller because this one seems to think that i should have to warn my wife before touching her. Tonights my annaversery, I was hoping for a romantic evenening with her, but she decided that since her brothers are in town we should reschedule and see them while the whole family is here. She was the one yesterday taht insisted I not tattoo her brother while she is at work today, since it is our annaversery I obliged. Only to get this thrown at me. I honestly can’t help but wonder if this is yet another prefabricated excuse to avoid intimacy. Maybe this is wrong, but I am for sure tomorrow ino ur sesssion telling her that expecting me to ” do without” because she has “no drive” (her words, I haven’t pointed out taht she was basically a feind for sex before she was married to me. Per her own stories (as long as they treated her poorly)) is not fair, and that either she recognize this and respect it or I am gone. Then I start to think, well obligatory sex is just insuling, and her just get it over with mentality is fucking hurtful as hell. I have never been this effed up by a woman before EVER, I guess it’s just continue to work on myself and gaurd myself while I do so. Either way for my own reasons and because my state is particularly bad with custody laws, I am trying to give it my best shot so that if it comes down to it the courts cannot blame me for lack of trying. Plus it might behouve me to have some “ammo” as it were if she starts throwing stones. Basically, i feel it might be wise to make use of said voice recorder.

        Well thanks for the little island of sanity over here on your site, it’s nice. Just keep plugging along I guess and don’t put up with the bs. I almost wish if not for my children that I had never met this crazy b*(&%^(*6 But, I guess I wouldn’t be looking so deeplywihtin myself now, so I can’t really say in all honesty that I whish it had never happened. Maybe that it had never progressed so far but all the saem.

        • jp
          March 18, 2010 at 4:10 pm

          how odd,

          What comes through in this last post is how much you’re reacting to her. She’s setting the pace, the tone, the rules, and you’re scrambling to keep up.

          You need to SECRETLY take control of your life.

          She’ll use anything against you so stop sharing your feelings about her and the relationship as if you’re two equal partners communicating their way towards greater understanding of each other.

          In fact you’re married to a crazy bully who will certainly say anything to maintain her supremacy. We don’t yet know what she’ll do to maintain it, but you should assume the worst.

          First, let her go to another city. She will have ‘left home’ leaving you with de facto custody of the children. That is a fantastic legal position for you to be in should you end up divorcing her and fighting for custody which you most likely will.

          Get the digital recorder now. Many men are tossed from their homes and pushed out of their children’s lives by false accusations of domestic violence. Courts don’t care about evidence…they take the accusation alone as justification for the most draconian measures since the child’s safety is considered to be so important as to warrant a suspension of your rights to due process. IF you have recordings showing she threatened to make false claims you’ll be in a good position to protect yourself should it happen.

          Next, keep a journal and log, in secret, her craziness, abusive outbursts (verbal and physical), weird treatment of the kids, etc.

          Third, talk to a lawyer, in secret. Many will do a free initial consultation. Find our what your options are. Assume the worst. Do your homework. Get a plan.

          If you decide to divorce her, you should say nothing to her about it until the day you serve her papers, and from that point on you should be setting the tempo, while she scrambles to react.

          The courts are so biased against men you’ll need every advantage if you want a) equal or better custody/access to your kids, b) to keep from being impoverished by your states child support guidelines.

          Emotionally I recommend you stop focusing so much on the sex issue. It’s difficult when it’s dangled in front of you like that…it keeps you over-focused on it and exaggerates the importance of sex over the overall health of the relationship which is on life support. Your being in the sex-hungry position is giving her way more power than she should have. Anyway, you shouldn’t have to beg and argue and negotiate to get those needs mets. It’s demeaning to you and it’s taking a toll on your self esteem. You’re not a teenage boy anymore hoping to cop a feel. If she uses sex as a tool of control, take it off the table completely and focus on the big picture, which is what do you need to do in order to take control of your life.

          Good luck,
          JP

  17. how odd
    March 16, 2010 at 3:01 pm

    It’s funny how much less I hurt when I read this stuff, still with my wife, but her tactics work less. Her dad is dying right now, and I am trying to support because of how hard I know it can be. But it makes it really difficult to put up with her shit when I am being so caring. Let’s just put it this way, I am scared tod eath taht ther fathers iminent death will be yet another reason she will use to try and control me.

    Is it normal to be litterally physically gut wrenchingly scared of what your wife is capable of doing out of spite..? I am almos more scared to leave her than stay. “It’s ok, because if you ever leave me I will make sure you never date again.” She may be right…. but from different angle than what she thought. She makes these thinly veiled threats, but as a joke. I often find myself wondering how true they might be.

    I mean she was not like this at all before we married. These tactics int his are something I have wondered about all too often. It it is almost scary when I look at it. She was kind, supportive, loving, sexual, and most if not all of the thigns I wanted in a wife. We got married and almost immediately, sex dropped from 3-4 times per week maybe 1 a month if I am lucky. All of a sudden all her support comes with strings attatched often with guilt included as some kind of sick bonus. SHe is loving as long as I keep the house clean to her standards. I mean i just recently realised that 90% of the shit she complains isn’t getting cleaned is hers….. WTF!?!?!?! I get yelled at for not picking up after myself and not cleaning enough, and then I look around and I see her shirt on the floor her shoes, her work jacket on a chair instead of the closet, her dirty cereal bowl, my video game controller on the couch instead of the game “area” the babies clothes she took off and left in the middle of the floor, the list goes on….. But here I am on my day off cleaning my ass off because I am afraid of how she will react….

    I was literally ready to walk out the door last week, and was staying out of her manipulation while going to individual and mutual councelling. Her father got sick, and now all of a sudden right back to the way it was.

    I wish it was easier to recognize this shit sometimes. I honestly wonder how she got her talons so deep into me. I guess I am just hoping that the person I fell in love with really exists….

    I also have to share …. How is it that this person can tell me “I love you enough to say you should leave if I make you nhappy” and then at the same time hook me in so much harder….. Like I said, it’s scary. And she has been physically abusive inthe past, not for a long time, but on a recent fit she punched a big hole in the wall. WTF…. yet she threatens me with police when we argue. I honestly wonder what she is capable of sometimes, and have considered talking to her family about putting her in the hospital, but I know it won’t help. She will work them teh same way she works our marraige counceller. Can you believe he actually told me that I need to warn my own wife before touching her because she was raped as a child…. Does that seem like reverse logic to any one else…? enabling this damage to continue in her life…. This woman slept with everything that moved as long as they treated her poorly, why is the man that wants to actually love her and just be with her, so scary.

    Steps down from soap box… man this can be tiring.

    • ozymandias
      March 17, 2010 at 11:47 pm

      Thanks for this Mike. You’ve given me a further understanding of what has happened in my life. Whilst I’m not narcissistic to the point whereby I have a disorder, and I certainly dont fear abandonment (I deal with it),I definitely have some of the NPD qualities! I hadn’t thought that it was these very qualities which would attract a BPD (indeed, I hadn’t even realised I had the qualities til I discovered Dr T) but now you come to mention it, it makes perfect sense.

      This site is just great.

      • Nick
        March 23, 2010 at 6:24 pm

        I think i have alittle npd too…diference is it makes me sick to my stomach..i am aware…and will work to eliminate. The ex whacko is oblivious to her malady.

    • Aapeli
      September 14, 2010 at 3:15 am

      “And she has been physically abusive inthe past, not for a long time, but on a recent fit she punched a big hole in the wall. WTF…. yet she threatens me with police when we argue.”

      Yeah! I wrote another post somewhere here at this site about this but here it comes briefly:

      My NPD “girlfriend” tried to drive me off our sofa by hitting me in the head and upper torso and arms with a metallic pipe of a vacuum cleaner. I took it away from her after a while as the hits at my head were getting stronger so I thought she could actually knock me out – I got afraid she could actually kill me. I was calm and didn’t fight back because I specifically came there to welcome her back home from work and to listen to her so I didn’t react right away when she started poking me with the pipe. I just hoped she would calm down and start talking to me about her day at work.

      Any ways I threw the pipe away and she attacked me, ripped my shirt, scratched me with her fingers (in addition to what she did with the pipe), then when I started running upstairs to escape the violence, she tried to pull me down, pulled my pants down (that was probably funny-looking), but then she ran into the toilet downstairs, locked the door, and started yelling that she will call the cops because I hit her! That’s just not true at all – I did not hit her at all and all of the marks of violence were on my body.

      Immediately after that I went into the toilet upstairs with a camera and took a lot of photos of the damage she did to my body – I was afraid she would actually report me to the police so I needed to document what had just happened for later use.

      Yeah, this sort of crap actually happens and I think many cops may fall for it. I have been thinking that I should have had video cameras around filming our daily life for years already as I think her abusive behaviour would easily be revealed to others if it were caught on video camera. Maybe I won’t bother with this any more.

      I can imagine that if this same woman would be with a violent man she would have been badly beaten up by now. She is fortunate that I am not a violent person. I don’t know if she would pull that shit on such a “stronger” man but if she would then she could end up in real trouble.

      I am not a fighter and I have known it since a long time. I cannot enter a fight because I don’t have the personality to actually want to hurt other people. Someone who isn’t so reserved will easily beat me up I guess. I guess my girlfriend also understands this and that may be one reason why she has been so abusive towards me. She may understand that I don’t have a fighter mentality and therefore she can abuse me. I just need to solve this by getting out of it and make sure I will never have this situation again.

  18. March 16, 2010 at 1:39 pm

    BPDs can easily destroy NPDs. In the end each other´s fear of abandoment,enguflment makes them start the push/pull game until both are left in shambles. The sociopath is the only one who is 98% able to deal with BPDs, as they are detached.

    Or people with NPD traits (which are very alluring to Bpds) + the streetsmarts of a sociopath can handle Bpds too as long as they remain detached, don´t fear losing her and don´t give in to their manipulations. It´s almost inhuman to see a person like this, even expert psychologists would have a hard time dealing with bpds I suppose.

    To be able to see your girl having sex with your “best friend” (and no man can resist such charm) to piss you off or control you is not for the faint of heart. You “have to ler her do it” and show it doesn´t affect you at all, because if you do, she will repeat the dose!!! If you show you don´t care you give her a taste of her own medicine. It also implies that you can take or leave her, which will further her anxiety and fears of losing you for ever.

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