Polished Manners

The Official Etiquette Rules for the Vintage A...

The Official Etiquette Rules for the Vintage Advice Group (Photo: Ann Douglas)

Don’t be fooled by nice manners. What looks like politeness can be pretense used to sugarcoat aggressive, manipulative, or false communication. Look at the content; not merely the cover. In other words; pay attention to what the person is saying, and don’t be fooled by who he is or how he is saying it.

See also It’s so easy to be fooled

Devalue and discard

Quote

Devalue and Discard

Narcissism

A narcissist will quickly devalue and discard his target, claiming he is the victim. His victims are now put in a defensive role by his lies and character assassination. By involving others he is enlarging his circle of those who give him attention. Any attention you may have given him is now replaced and multiplied by other people he manages to fool. A win/win scenario for a narcissist.

He will increase his attempts to provoke his victim into some reaction—the more emotional the better to make her look crazy and himself sane. Do NOT take his bait. It is his trap and setup. Provoking you into a reaction is his goal.

Dr. Vaknin explains: “Even the victim’s relatives, friends, and colleagues are amenable to the considerable charm, persuasiveness, and manipulativeness of the abuser and to his impressive thespian skills. The abuser offers a plausible rendition of the events and interprets them to his favor. Others rarely have a chance to witness an abusive exchange first hand and at close quarters. In contrast, the victims are often on the verge of a nervous breakdown: harassed, unkempt, irritable, impatient, abrasive, and hysterical.”

“Confronted with this contrast between a polished, self-controlled, and suave abuser and his harried casualties it is easy to reach the conclusion that the real victim is the abuser, or that both parties abuse each other equally. The prey’s acts of self-defense, assertiveness, or insistence on her rights are interpreted as aggression, lability, or a mental health problem.

Dr. Sam Vaknin
Narcissism by Proxy, FAQ#42  

Narcissism

Stonewalling or The Silent Treatment

Aside

silent treatmentsilent treatmentsilent treatmentsilent treatmentsilent treatmentsilent treatment

Stonewallers, whether sociopaths or not, are seriously disturbed communicators. Their indifference to the stonewalled party’s experience can be chilling. Their stonewalling often reflects character pathology, in which case they won’t change—they will always be stonewallers.

Click here to read the article by Steve Becker, LCSW • Lovefraud.com


See also:
A Sociopathic Favorite
What is Stonewalling?
Stonewalling or The Silent Treatment
Sociopathic Stonewalling

The skilled liar

Aside

The Skilled Liar

Liar Liar

Billy LiarAbusers tend to be comfortable lying, having years of practice (and no qualms,) and so can sound believable when making baseless statements. The abuser benefits when people feel too uncomfortable to ask a seemingly sincere, respectable person to substantiate a claim, or fail to look closely at evidence—if not ignore it—because of his charm or perceived authority. He also benefits when people believe that they can “just tell” who is lying and who is telling the truth, and so fail to adequately investigate.

Victims of Psychopaths: True Stories

From DailyStrength.org

psychopath victim

“Is he beyond a narcissist? Is he a sociopath or psychopath? Think we’re only talking about serial killers here? Psychopaths, sociopaths, and even narcissists come in every walk of life, every career level, and every socio-economic category. They are doctors, attorneys, ministers, students, and truck drivers. They are realtors, construction workers, and professors. They are your boss, your neighbor, your family member, and your lover or husband. You might even be with one now and not know.”

psychopath victim

Read the victims’ personal accounts and notice the similarities
between the psychopathic abusers that they describe!


In Sheep’s Clothing:

Understanding and Dealing with Manipulative People

by Dr. George K. Simon

In Sheep's Clothing

On Amazon: In Sheep’s Clothing: Understanding and Dealing with Manipulative People, by George K. Simon


“…bear in mind you are dealing with highly skilled manipulators. They’ve had years and years of experience being covertly aggressive–do not underestimate their power. It happens so quickly, so subtly, you must arm yourself with tools to fight such monsters.”

“I have met a lot of people who have said something rude, did something in total disregard to my feelings and then gave lame excuses, no excuses or even tried to accuse me of being the bad guy afterwards. These manipulative people know what they’re doing, they don’t care, and they get a kick out of manipulating you.”

“These people are at war with you. Don’t ever tell them your secrets or your insecurities. They will just use it against you to inflict more pain.”

“For the first time in my life, I understand why I perceive people are “always taking advantage of me”. I’ve let them. Since I’ve been speaking up, I feel empowered and alive. This book saved my perspective, if not my life…”

“They look like us, but they are extremely smooth at decieving and come in many forms!”

sheep

More posts featuring Dr George Simon:

Nice and friendly?

Bernie Madoff

Bernie Madoff was trusted and well liked. He ripped off whoever he could, even his old friends.

Since, in the majority of cases, people who indulge in abuse are selective about whom they abuse, other people are typically surprised—or in disbelief—when hearing that someone is experiencing on-going and periodic abuse from someone they know and have always seen as nice and friendly. “Nice and friendly” is the persona of many conmen, abusers, and killers. Although many folks really are as nice and friendly as they seem, some most definitly are not. Like Ted Bundy.

English: Ted Bundy in custody, Florida, 1978 o...

Ted Bundy in custody, Florida, 1978 or 1979.

Psychopathic Dominance

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psychopath If most members of a group are honest and intelligent, then evil people will be identified and excluded. When most members have psychopathic traits, the honest and intelligent people are identified and excluded! In a psychopath-controlled environment, it’s the honest people who seem defective and deviant.
psychopaths


Group norms

Conformity offers many rewards.

conformity
Shared beliefs heighten mutual respect within a group and bond its members. Consensus is perceived as validation of the group’s beliefs, which then may evolve into unquestionable ‘truths’ that need no explanations and cannot be challenged without risking loss of respect and exclusion from the group.

conformity

Our need to belong makes us subconsciously open to influence by the values and beliefs communicated to us from marketing, propaganda, charismatic leaders—who may be psychopaths—and peers. 

conformity

Psychopath strategy

Basic manipulative strategy of a psychopath

According to Hare and Babiak, psychopaths are always on the lookout for individuals to scam or swindle. The psychopathic approach includes three phases:

1 Assessment

Some psychopaths are opportunistic, aggressive predators who will take advantage of almost anyone they meet, while others are more patient, waiting for the perfect, innocent victim to cross their path. In each case, the psychopath is constantly sizing up the potential usefulness of an individual as a source of money, power, sex, or influence. Some psychopaths enjoy a challenge while others prey on people who are vulnerable. During the assessment phase, the psychopath is able to determine a potential victim’s weak points and will use those weak points to seduce.

2 Manipulation

Once the psychopath has identified a victim, the manipulation phase begins. During the manipulation phase, a psychopath may create a persona or mask, specifically designed to ‘work’ for his or her target. A psychopath will lie to gain the trust of their victim. Psychopaths’ lack of empathy and guilt allows them to lie with impunity; they do not see the value of telling the truth unless it will help get them what they want.

As interaction with the victim proceeds, the psychopath carefully assesses the victim’s persona. The victim’s persona gives the psychopath a picture of the traits and characteristics valued in the victim. The victim’s persona may also reveal, to an astute observer, insecurities or weaknesses the victim wishes to minimize or hide from view. As an ardent student of human behavior, the psychopath will then gently test the inner strengths and needs that are part of the victim’s private self and eventually build a personal relationship with the victim.

The persona of the psychopath—the “personality” the victim is bonding with—does not really exist. It is built on lies, carefully woven together to entrap the victim. It is a mask, one of many, custom-made by the psychopath to fit the victim’s particular psychological needs and expectations. The victimization is predatory in nature; it often leads to severe financial, physical or emotional harm for the individual. Healthy, real relationships are built on mutual respect and trust; they are based on sharing honest thoughts and feelings. The victim’s mistaken belief that the psychopathic bond has any of these characteristics is the reason it is so successful.

3 Abandonment

The abandonment phase begins when the psychopath decides that his or her victim is no longer useful. The psychopath abandons his or her victim and moves on to someone else. In the case of romantic relationships, a psychopath will usually seal a relationship with their next target before abandoning his or her current victim. Sometimes, the psychopath has three individuals on whom he or she is running game: the one who has been recently abandoned, who is being toyed with and kept in the picture in case the other two do not work out; the one who is currently being played and is about to be abandoned; and the third, who is being groomed by the psychopath, in anticipation of abandoning the current “mark”.


Beware of…

When people say that i’m not the best.

Psychopaths’ lack of empathy and guilt
allows them to lie with impunity; they do
not see the value of telling the truth 
unless it will help get them what they want.