Psychiatric Times is the name of a magazine that was delivered to my office yesterday. The lead article was: “The Hidden Suffering of the Psychopath.” Really, sufferings OF the psychopath?
The article went on to describe the diagnostic features of a psychopath as: manipulative behavior, superficial charm, high intelligence, poor judgment, no self control and failure to learn from experience, pathological egocentricity and an incapacity for love, grandiose sense of self worth, and arrogance. It stated they suffer from severe emotional pain because of their inability to sustain healthy relationships and as they age their health deteriorates because of the associated inability to learn from their experiences. They are lonely and isolated and they try to hide their true psychopathic nature so they will be accepted. They have many short-term marital relationships. They are genuinely saddened by their inability to control their psychopathic tendencies. It went on to explain that most psychopaths are NOT killers. (Well, most don’t leave behind dead bodies, just mutilated souls.)
OK, so now do YOU feel sad for THEM since you know how they suffer? Let’s talk for a moment about the games they play and collateral damage they leave behind in the lives of their victims.
Stage 1 – Idealization Stage – In this game, they lure you with charm and “love-bombing”. They will say anything to get what they want. You believe they are your soul-mate. It will seem that this person is everything you need and you’ll find them encouraging you to eliminate your entire support system of friends and family for them. They reflect back to you, just like a mirror, all the things you like about yourself, because they have nothing real to show you of themselves. You are hooked.
Stage 2 – The Devaluation Stage – They start changing the game. They give you JUST enough reinforcement to keep from losing you and at the same time start steadily devaluing you. They start feeding you strategically measured “doses” of attention and validation to keep you on the hook. You begin to blame yourself for not being able to keep their interest and find yourself tolerating worsening treatment.
Stage 3 – Discard Stage – They’ve extracted everything out of you that you’ve been able to give including your self-respect, your happiness, your health, and even your dignity. They discard you with such a degree of vitriol and hatred that you are astonished. They have become bored because they’ve drained you of every ounce of your life force and now they are ready to move on to their next victim. They are like vampires.
Sound familiar, my precious girl? I would tell you to let these memories be burned into you consciousness like a branding iron. The next psychopath is just around the corner and will be drawn to a prior victim like a bee is seduced by pollen. I wish I could remind you to BEWARE.
I miss you. So much.