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Family Court Strategies: When Your Partner Has BPD OR NPD Traits. Practicing lawyer, Senior Family Mediator, and former Licensed Clinical Social Worker with twelve years’ experience and an expert on navigating the Family Court process.
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Author Topic: victim or volunteer  (Read 763 times)
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Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Parent
Posts: 537

« on: December 08, 2010, 09:42:46 AM »

I was reading some reviews on a book about a lady that was married to a psychopath.

Many of the reviews were positive & sympathetic, but there were other reviews that really stood out to me & left me wishing I had such valuable insight in my dealings with people.

They said she refused to see reality, wouldn't take responsibility, ignored red flags, covered for him yet enjoyed the perks of his illegal activities, etc.

full reviews here


I guess I just wanted to discuss how we can get better at noticing the Red flag/bad  (click to insert in post)  

When do we finally stop making excuses for others (sig. other, parents, siblings, older children) & take care of ourselves?

cross-posting on coping with family member board, my usual hangout 
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Gender: Male
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Posts: 808

« Reply #1 on: December 09, 2010, 01:37:03 AM »

how we can get better at noticing thered-flag

I haven't read this book but use my own journey as a yardstick to measure by. Books like these are really about denial and the coming to terms with it. I often think that people dont know what abuse is and later, with time and distance come away with a "what was I thinking?" conundrum. Then it's important to decipher exactly what the thought processes are in order to learn a little bit about yourself in therapy. When you come to terms with it, you can help others, especially others who are also in denial.

There are a myriad of stories about women who attach themselves to their own faulty perceptions of what they think benefits them. Are they victims? (Only of their own behavior.) Labeling themselves as victims and others as psychopaths may be a way to gain and lose power. The original attachment to the "psycho" was based on power and when the failure of the attachment became undeniable- a "split" was needed to get away from the host. But labeling someone a psychopath may be a way to refuse to see their part in it. It may be a way to deny faulty perceptions. After all, the more psychopathic the partner is, the less responsibility the other partner has for their part in the relationship.

Follow the reward. Follow the denial. In object relations therapy they will tell you to follow the reward and see where it leads you- especially in the form of payoffs and giveaways.  So many women become victims of scams and love fraud. But a 14 year marriage? That's 14 years of managed perception and denial. Sometimes this enabling takes the form of control over not being abandoned.  The reward is to attach to the power source, but failing to see that they still have very little real power of their own. Once a book like this is published, it gives power back, but in the form of inverted narcissism- that is, the victimized victim of a malignant narcissist is her new identity- so she is still attached.

If you are going to read books about psychopaths- try "The Mask of Sanity" by Cleckley. Even though it was written in 1941, it gives a good description of a person without conscience. It doesn't take long to see that most of the time these people are not easily spotted and they freely walk among us- but they rely on others to keep coming back for more. Denial is one of the first and easiest mechanisms to manipulate.  Just follow the reward- and that includes both parties.

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