Sociopaths are parasites in a world of hosts

Image source: http://www.pinterest.com/pin/84020349270421025/

Image source: Pinterest

Sociopaths are parasites.

Sociopaths come in many shapes and sizes. They look like our neighbors, our bosses, our co-workers and even our best friends. They even come disguised as our soul mates. (Yikes!)

But the one thing all of these sociopaths have in common is their ability to suck us clean of every ounce of talent and goodness we have inside and then toss us on the side of the road leaving us wondering what we ever did to deserve such punishment.

Yes. We see the abuse inflicted upon us by the sociopath as punishment for something we did wrong. We committed a crime against the sociopath, and we must handle the punishment because all the sociopath ever wanted was for us to need him as much as he needed us.

In the beginning:

  • We were adored by the sociopath when he first met us.
  • We listened to the sociopath and his complaints of his past girlfriends, lovers, friends and even siblings.
  • We were convinced that the poor, poor sociopath was misunderstood and that we would be the one who would finally make his life worth living.
  • We were placed on a pedestal that was so high above all others, we couldn’t even catch our breath most of the time.
  • We became convinced that the sociopath really loved us; we were the love of his life, the one, the best thing that ever happened to him.
  • We got comfortable. We felt safe. We started sharing more about our dreams and passions.

Once he knew we were hooked:

  • We were shamed slowly and insidiously, and our past was thrown in our faces.
  • We were led to believe we weren’t good enough and shouldn’t think so highly of ourselves.
  • We experienced confusion, and the pedestal slowly crumbled beneath us, putting us off balance and jolted repeatedly and endlessly.
  • We failed to be patient enough when the sociopath raged and cried.
  • We failed to comply when the sociopath told us we shouldn’t wear that or listen to this or watch that or be friends with him.
  • We failed to act fast enough with our empathy when the sociopath was crying and injured due to what he deemed our insensitivities.
  • We failed to put the sociopath first before all others.
  • We failed to bury our dreams and desires in place of the sociopath’s fantasy.

Once we realized the sociopath was not as righteous as he wanted us to believe:

  • We disagreed more openly with the sociopath. We spoke up.
  • We did what we wanted to do when we wanted to do it without the sociopath.
  • We made friends outside of the sociopath’s established inner circle.
  • We talked to strangers and enjoyed talking to strangers.
  • We planned more and more of our free time without considering the sociopath.

Once we started to fight for our freedom:

  • We were abused, shamed and blamed more. Sometimes we were physically attacked.
  • We pointed out the sociopath’s delusional thinking.
  • We told the sociopath what we really thought of him.
  • We got angry when the sociopath gave us the silent treatment and ignored us when we started asking questions.

Once we realized we had been completely discarded as a human by the sociopath:

  • We got tired of being angry and being ignored by the sociopath, so we started telling anyone in earshot what was happening to us.
  • We were pitied or even ignored.
  • But we kept talking. Someone was listening.

Once we realized we were not alone:

  • We helped ourselves and listened to our gut.
  • We promised to love ourselves and be better than the person we were before the sociopath entered our lives.
  • We worked hard to change our destructive thinking patterns.
  • We ate better, began a new habit or two or three, made new friends and took long walks again…all by ourselves.
  • We relearned self-love and self-respect, two things we thought we had in spades before the sociopath came into our lives.
  • We learned to trust ourselves again.
  • We learned to focus on our happiness and joy and not worry about the sociopath’s next victim.
  • We learned that our savior is inside of us.
  • We learned to love again.

What did the sociopath learn?

  • The sociopath learned to sharpen his skills.
  • The sociopath learned how to be more stealth, patient and charming.
  • The sociopath learned how to prolong his game, so he can suck more out of his next victim(s).

Because there will always be a next one and a next one and a next one.

Namaste!
~Paula

How to Recover from Sociopathic Abuse with a Mindful Approach to Online Pages and Groups

marianne williamson quoteIf you’re reading this, you probably supplement your healing and recovery from sociopathic abuse using Facebook or blogs in some capacity.

Over the last 30 months, the people, pages and private groups I trust, like, follow and learn from have changed and evolved as my healing and outlook changed and evolved. Pages I religiously picked over 12 months ago are no longer the same pages I pick over today.

It’s not that I don’t value those pages or groups anymore. On the contrary. Those pages and groups served me well, and I wouldn’t be where I am today without them.

You see, this journey to find our peace after sociopathc abuse consists of stages. In order to naturally progress in our healing, we must be able to recognize when it’s time to move from one stage to the next stage. Sometimes it happens naturally. But sometimes we stay in one stage longer than another, or we fail to realize we need to move on and end up getting stuck in a certain stage.

The following are the stages I have entered, so far, in my healing journey:

1. Confusion (12 months) Upon escaping the boy in my story, I was desperately confused. I knew that the relationship was toxic while in it, because I suffered great anxiety, depression and self-destructive behaviors. Yet, even after leaving and taking a step back to look at the relationship from the outside in, I struggled with making sense of what happened and dove deeper into depression and self-loathing. I thought exiting the relationship would bring me immediate peace; instead, it just made me more confused and doubtful.

2. Awareness of Sociopaths (3 months) While depressed, drinking to self-soothe on occasion and seeing a counselor regularly, I began independent research and study into personality disorders and bipolar disorder. I didn’t begin this research because I thought my abuser (the boy in my story) was mentally unstable. I began my research because my abuser told me I was mentally unstable, and I needed to understand what it was about me that I needed to change. Within a few short weeks of reading and digesting information and taking online tests and asking my psychiatrist pointed questions about this disorder or that disorder, I came to the conclusion that in my research into personality disorders, I was not learning about myself but about my abuser.

Don’t get me wrong. In this early stage, I was clearly unstable. I was. And I was fully aware of it. I had no trust in my abilities to think or rationalize clearly or with any effectiveness. However, I thankfully realized that I was not as severely broken as the boy in my story would have liked me to believe. And this realization led to the next stage.

3. Anger and Denial (5 months) I was pissed. I was angry at myself and angry at my ex. I oscillated between absolutely believing my ex was a monster to denying that sociopaths really existed. This oscillation caused so much confusion and frustration. I was so angry, but I didn’t want to be angry and sought various outlets for my anger.

My blog writing picked up momentum and so did my yoga practice. I did a 30-day yoga challenge and was determined to dump the anger in anyway I could. It wasn’t a healthy choice, however. I was forcing it when I should have been more gentle and mindful with myself. I was not reaching out for the help I needed. and I was still self-soothing with booze, which resulted in a serious alcohol-related setback. I reached the lowest, yet highest point of my anger and discovered I suffered from post traumatic stress but was too ashamed to talk about it. So I kept writing and trying to purge my anger. It worked to a degree, but I still found myself frustrated and angry at myself for my inability to fix myself. Daily, I found myself wishing and hoping for my ex and his family to die from self-implosion. My anger was not controlled nor was it healthy. But, today, I see that it was necessary to reach the next stage.

4. Acceptance and Self-Focused Healing (ongoing) – Being angry just got old, and my body and mind asked me to please stop and to focus on the rest of my life. I took an inventory of my life and the people in it. I deconstructed myself in order to reconstruct and build a new self. I could never go back to who I was before the sociopath. Never. But I also wanted to be better than I was before.

I began to value my skills and abilities and my worth in an amazing and profound way. I journeyed into discovering my faith and spirituality. I let go of many, many material things from my toxic relationship that I recognized were burdening me: photographs, gifts from the boy, clothing worn while in the toxic relationship, emails, texts, voicemails, and letters and cards. I purged myself of the love affair completely. It was difficult, because I still have love letters from boys I dated in high school and early college. Being sentimental has it’s disadvantages when the other half of a love relationship is pathologically disordered. I kept writing on my blog but my writing became more hopeful, less angry and more uplifting. (Well, at least that was my hope.)

These were and continue to be my stages of healing. Yours are surely different but with overlapping similarities.If you are active on Facebook and on pages and in groups, keep in mind that each stage requires us to absorb and focus on different kinds of support and information available across many different kinds of pages and groups.

I had to let go of people and pages and groups as I became more and more aware and progressed in my healing. Unfortunately, I held onto some pages and groups for too long in some cases. But, eventually, I recognized how I was becoming stagnant in my mind, knowledge and everyday life. Removing myself and discovering the next stage of support was not me being fickle. It didn’t go against my ability to be loyal. I was and have continued to be loyal to myself when it comes to moving and growing.

This is YOUR healing. No one else’s. Don’t allow anyone to tell you what you can and can not say, do or think. If you are an active participant in your healing, you are the master of your healing. You are the center of your learning and evolution.

No page, page creator or group facilitator has all of the information you need at exactly the right time and stage that you need it.

The moment you start feeling you’re no longer benefiting from a page (including this page), hide it from your feed and go in search of a page that speaks to where you are now. Don’t even bother saying goodbye. Really. Just silently and gracefully walk away.

Your first priority is to you. Be selfish for a change. If others are actively participating in their healing and recovery, they’ll understand in time if they don’t understand in the moment.

Peace and namaste!
~Paula

© Paula Carrasquillo and Paula’s Pontifications, 2012 – 2013.

letter to a sociopath who thinks he's god

A Letter to the Sociopath So He Can FINALLY Stop Worrying About Me

letter to a sociopath who thinks he's godDear Sociopath,

I feel so silly writing this. Why? Well, I know how much you always worried about me, and no matter how much I told you it was unnecessary to worry, you still worried. So even after you read this letter, you’ll probably continue to have those same worries, but I hope not. What kind of life is it to worry about little old me who isn’t even in your life anymore? I hope this letter, filled with details of my recent happiness, helps to ease your worries.

So here goes:

Remember that love story you kept begging me to write when we were together? Well, I wrote it!! And can you believe I am nearly finished a much longer follow-up book? My second book should be even more enlightening for those who found my first book so helpful. I know you’d be proud of me. After all, you always said I had a lovely way with words and shouldn’t waste my talents and skills. You were even able to talk me into deleting that silly family-related blog I started when my son was first born, explaining to me that I should focus on something more practical and worthy of my talents. Well, guess what? I did that too! Isn’t this a great blog? I even came up with a catchy name for it, too: Paula’s Pontifications. Pretty cool, huh? I thought you’d be impressed.

I’m sure you could never forget my son. You know my son, the gorgeous and lovable little 5-year-old boy you so generously allowed to play with your dog. (That was incredibly selfless of you, by the way, to let my child play with your delicate dog.) Regardless, he is doing incredible! He loves yoga and karate and wants to be a soccer star when he gets older. All those fears you had about me raising him wrong and your worries that I was jeopardizing his well-being, well, you can now rest assured that he’s safe and well-protected. He starts 3rd grade in a few weeks, and although he is the youngest in his class, he keeps up easily, even though he hates writing, but I guess we all can’t be perfect. Thanks for caring so much. Oh, and don’t worry about him being sad because he is missing you. He doesn’t even remember you.  Isn’t that great? No worries there, either. No loss of sleep for my little boy. Kids are so resilient, huh?

Best of all, I never had to sell my car or file for bankruptcy! I know how very concerned you were about me losing everything when I left you. After a few career bumps and obstacles, I was able to land an even better-paying job than I had before. Plus, with my increased writing and editing experience, I get an occasional freelance job. I think I am pretty close to making double what you were making. Isn’t that awesome? If you were still with me you could have definitely become that house boy you always dreamed of becoming. The chances of me ever becoming pathetic and dependent have narrowed considerably! Again, you can let go of all those worries and fears you had about me sabotaging my career. With over 100,000 words published online, I’m sure my marketability will continue to grow. I’ve truly been blessed in many ways over the last 30 months. Thank you so much for worrying that I would fail. You can stop now, because I didn’t fail. Instead, you can celebrate and have a maté for me!!

Oh, and your biggest fear about me self-destructing? You can finally let it go!!  I was able to quit drinking! Remember all those AA meetings you found and wanted me to attend because the ones I was attending were too far away from your house and you felt they took away too much of our time together? Well, I beat my alcohol dependency without AA meetings. I took what I needed from those meetings and worked with my husband who was more than willing to sacrifice some of his days and nights to hold my hand and pick me up when I fell down, real and figuratively. And since I no longer need alcohol to get through my days, I even kicked my depression and am no longer on any type of mood-altering medications!! I know how much you hated that I took medicine. Well, no need to worry about it anymore. I am whole again and better than before.

And remember all those times you tried to get me started with a workout routine? Well, I have one now! I don’t know what got into me, but one day I just went to a yoga studio and haven’t looked back! Maybe it has something to do with doing it on “my” time and not “our” time. It would have been impossible for my husband and me to have scheduled matching workout routines. After all, who would take care of our son if we were both at the gym at the same time? (Flexibility, collaboration and partnership…in case you need to know for the future. You’re welcome!) But anyhow–back to yoga. It has changed my life!! My entire body and mind and spirit have been transformed! I don’t even recognize myself some days. I know you tried to push me when we were together. Sorry our workouts didn’t work out. (I’m so funny now, huh? I even got my humor back!) But be happy for me now. I found something I love, and I begin yoga teacher training next month. My goal is to one day teach yoga to trauma victims, specifically I want to help women who survived and escaped abusive relationships, relationships that compromised their physical, emotional and spiritual well-being. We all deserve to be whole again.

I’m sure you’re dying to let me know how proud you are of me, huh? No worries there. My husband, my son, my sisters, my parents and the wonderful and amazing new friends I have made are repeatedly telling me how proud they are of me.  Don’t worry, I am 100% appreciated, just what you always hoped for me.

So that’s my happiness in a nutshell. I hope you finally found what you’ve been looking for, too. Oh, but you already told me that you had found what you were looking for. I hope that’s still working out for you. I know how much it sucks to lose people you once loved.

Namaste!
Paula (a.k.a. Pumpkin. You might remember me by that name.)

(image source: http://pinterest.com/pin/33284484715793320/)

grief

Ambiguous Loss: Grieving the Sociopath

griefOften associated with losing someone due to death or a debilitating disease/condition like Alzheimer’s, ambiguous loss is, well, ambiguous.

It’s not clear when the feelings of ambiguous loss begin to creep into our psyche in relation to our toxic relationship with the sociopath. These feelings more than likely begin while still in the relationship as we slowly, over time, witness the slipping and transformation of the sociopath from a person we once loved into a person we no longer recognize.

Once outside of the relationship, these feelings become even stronger. We realize that although we accept the sociopath for what he/she is, we fail to quickly release ourselves from and let go of the false person we once believed the sociopath to be.

Although we no longer love, honor or respect the sociopath, we still grieve the loss of the person we thought the sociopath was. We fell in love with a fantasy person, someone who we allowed to affect us deeply. And the pain and overwhelming feelings of desperation of losing this fantasy person may cause us to get stuck in our healing and recovery, paralyzing us from moving forward.

So what can we do about it? How can we overcome this loss? I’ll leave that to the experts at The Wendt Center for Loss and Healing to provide possible solutions. The following is taken from their site:

1. Seek out support from others. Surrounding yourself with people who care about you and who understand what you are going through can help validate your feelings.

2. Look for support groups that address the type of loss you are experiencing.

3. Allow yourself to take time to feel and express whatever emotions come up for you. Ignoring your feelings can prolong your feeling of being stuck.

4. Try to create a structure in aspects of your life that you can control, such as dinner and bedtime at the same time they usually occur, regular exercise, and family meetings as necessary.

5. Continue to strive to find meaning in your life that includes and acknowledges the loss you are experiencing.

6. Seek professional help if you find that the loss controlling your thoughts and behaviors and/or causing marked distress for an extended period of time.

Namaste!
~Paula

(image source: http://pinterest.com/pin/228839224786475459/)

The Top 5 Reasons to Walk Away from all TEXTBOOK Sociopaths

walking away

There seems to be a growing trend of sociopaths “coming out” on blogs, message boards and even in real-world environments. More often than not, the sociopath slips into an already comment-heavy post or string of victims and survivors with a seemingly harmless comment like this:

Hi, my name is Johnny, and I’m a sociopath. I’m not here to convince you that you’re wrong about sociopaths. I’d like to help you understand us better. Ask me anything you want to know. I’ll even give you my personal e-mail address.

What have I learned to do when this happens on a post I am actively commenting? I have learned to ignore and keep moving. Hopefully, the following five reasons will influence you NOT to begin any type of engagement with a sociopath, no matter how tempting and curious you may be:

1.) Do not engage a sociopath. Period.

If someone comments on a blog you follow and announces that he’s a sociopath, shrug to yourself and move along. Do you really want to be friends or associates with someone who professes to be the very thing that tried to destroy you in the first place?

2.) Do not believe a sociopath when the sociopath claims to have a moral code.

It’s your moral code he is projecting in order to gain your sympathy and trust. When we recognize ourselves in another person, our empathy, sympathy and compassion kick in and we think, “Oh, that poor, poor man. He needs someone to understand him.”

3.) Do not share your private thoughts, philosophy or insight with a sociopath.

When a sociopath says, “Just ask me anything you want to know. I’d love to help you understand me better,” he’s actually saying to himself, “If I gain their trust by seeming like a helper and a savior, I can learn more about what makes these non-sociopaths tick so I can be better at fooling and manipulating them.” Remember, if there is nothing in it for them, why would they waste their time on us boring, non-sociopathic saps?

4.) Do not praise a sociopath for being open and honest.

First, that’s a flipping oxymoron, contradiction in terms on so many levels. Second, if you praise a sociopath, you’ve invited him into your sphere. The sociopath’s negative energy has infiltrated your positive energy, and he’s already started sucking it from you. When you praise a sociopath for being human like you, what you’re really doing is validating the sociopath, giving the sociopath an ego boost and acknowledging that the sociopath succeeded in duping you. Open door to manipulate you further!

5.) Remain ever-mindful and fascinated with each other and not with the sociopath.

Curiosity killed the cat, remember? If you begin a conversation with a sociopath, be prepared to be triggered and for your recovery to be compromised. Be prepared to question yourself and your reality of good. Be prepared to start thinking sociopaths can be “fixed.” Be prepared to start becoming a delusional mess all over again.

Use your powers and strengths of compassion and empathy to understand each other instead. We already know how sociopaths operate. They’re textbook! They have nothing to teach us. Besides, why would you willfully enter that hell again?

No contact. Period.

Namaste!
~ Paula

The End of the Relationship with a Sociopath: Where is the Sense in It?

senseless

From the beginning, a relationship with a sociopath make no sense and is unlike any relationship we have ever encountered. And then the end comes, and we’re blown away by how it plays out.

When normal, healthy relationships end, we naturally grieve. We say goodbye to someone with whom we shared ourselves and whom shared themselves with us. It’s sad. It’s painful. But it’s life. People come and go. And just because the person we are saying good-bye to will no longer be a part of our everyday life, we have the beautiful memories of that person and all of the adventures and growth we experienced.

But when a relationship with a sociopath ends, it’s on par with losing someone through death. Why is the grief so intense? Probably because there was never a normal closure when a so-called relationship with a sociopath ends.

When we end romantic relationships with healthy partners, there is usually the final, mutual conversation where one side says, “I love you but it’s just not working” and the other side says “I love you, too, and I agree it’s not working.” You go your separate ways; there is no drama; there is no second-guessing. You move forward and deal every day with the gradual subsiding of the pain and grief of losing a person you once shared a life. And you always remember that person and how he/she shaped you and helped prepare you for the next relationship.

When the toxic relationship with a sociopath ends, we never experience the mutual conversation or the drama-free exit and separation. Instead, what we get from a sociopath is emptiness and lies. If you leave the sociopath, he’ll say, “Thank God I don’t have to endure you any more. I should have realized long ago that I was wasting my energy on you.” If he is the one to leave, he’ll say, “It’s just not working out. I don’t love you and never really loved you the way you wanted me to love you. We would have made each other miserable. Have a great life.”

Both reactions are shocking to a normal, health non-pathological person. How could someone devalue the years you spent together with such dismissive statements and lack of emotion and care?

Well, a sociopath, that’s who!

Once the sociopath no longer needs you or realizes he can’t use you for further supply, you become dead to the sociopath. His memory is wiped clean of you, because he was never able to connect with you on a spiritual level in the first place. You were just a material thing, an acquisition and a conquest; it’s easy to toss away things. In no uncertain terms, you become trash and garbage in the eyes of the sociopath.

You do not exist. You are worthless and so was the relationship. Poof! You’re nothing.

So harsh! You are unable to compute how the sociopath was able to come to such a conclusion about you and your worth. Once you recognize this reality, when you hear it in his tone and learn of it through the smear campaign, you may become desperate to make him see how wrong he is. You may try to delay the end. You may call him and beg and barter with him. You may get down on your hands and knees and say you’re sorry and would do anything to prove to him that you are worthy of his eternal friendship and love.

But, more than likely, by the time you make such a spectacle of yourself, the sociopath has already found a new source of supply. By doing this, you just end up looking like a crazy and desperate fool. The sociopath does not care what you have to say. He does not acknowledge any of the truth you might be speaking. However, the sociopath loves that you keep begging him and pleading with him to be nicer to you. These are the moments that feed the sociopath, and he shares these pleadings with his current victim/girlfriend/fiancee to prove to them how insane you are, “Jesus! This woman is so sick. She just can’t let go and accept I don’t want anything to do with her.”

The boy in my story described several women from his past in this way. (I’m definitely added to that list now. Hehe!) But was it really letting go of him that they were unable to do? Was his teenage lover really desperate to marry him after all these years because she was delusional and couldn’t accept the end of the relationship? Was the ex-girlfriend from Ohio, now married with children, pining for the boy because she still loved him? Did I call him after my stepfather died because I needed him to comfort me?

No. None of us really needed him in our lives. What we needed from him was a glimmer of humanity that we never received when the relationship ended. All we got was drama, hate and lies. We were desperate to be treated as humans.

But expecting to be treated as a human when the relationship with a sociopath ends is hoping in vane. It will never happen. Why? Because the sociopath isn’t human like you and me. He has no conscience. So why on earth would the sociopath treat you like you were human if he doesn’t even know what it feels like to be human with a conscience?

He wouldn’t, because he can’t. The sociopath is not capable of treating you like anything other than a disposable piece of flesh.

Namaste!
~Paula

(Image source: http://pinterest.com/pin/209206345162866290/)

“The sociopath ADORED me so much at first!! What happened?”

adoreNarcissistic Sociopaths need constant adoration. The sociopath primes you from the very beginning to provide them with constant adoration by adoring you first.

In the beginning during the idolization phase, everything you do and say is described by the sociopath as “amazing” and “genius” and “fantabulous!” He adores you and can’t imagine spending a night without you. You are the most beautiful woman he has every looked upon, touched and kissed. You don’t have sex; you make LOVE!! He can’t believe the time he wasted living without you. You’re a goddess.

Why does he say these things? Because you are all of those things, especially in the eyes of the sociopath who is just a dull blob of flesh next to your gloriousness. He sees it; he knows he pales in comparison. He tells you, because it’s the truth.

But you’re now scratching your head. You were under the impression sociopaths lie all the time. Well, they do lie all the time…about themselves and their feelings and their motives.

Luckily for us, sociopaths can’t create their own worlds without some truths. Unfortunately, the truths they use come from us. With our truth as the foundation of the relationship, the manipulation and mind games can begin.

(Remember, they NEED us; we do not need them.)

The sociopath doesn’t tell you these truths with the end goal to make you happy and fulfilled. He does it to make himself happy and fulfilled, because we reward him for rewarding us with such high praises.

It’s our natural default: when someone is nice to us, we’re nice in return.

Think about it—when was the last time you told someone to screw off when they complimented your appearance or your job performance? More than likely, you said “Thank you” and provided them with a reciprocal compliment either on-the-spot or later when appropriate.

We remember niceties of people, because it feels good. And we always return the niceties, because we want others to feel good, too. We don’t do it to receive more niceties in return, which is what sets us apart from the sociopath. The sociopath gives compliments with the great expectation of receiving compliments in return, a purely selfish and malignant mindset.

A great way to test what I propose is to think back (or in the present if you’re still engaged with a sociopath) to the last time you failed to return a compliment or even slightly criticized the sociopath.

How did he react? Probably with something like this:

“How can you be so cruel?! How could you say such means things to me when all I do is love you so much?” (And all you said was that you were tired of his choice of restaurants and you wanted to try something new.)

Regardless of the context of the present conversation or situation, the sociopath told you last week how beautiful you looked in that dress you wore to work, and you better not disagree or misbehave. If you fail to comply or insist on arguing, you are a selfish and heartless whore!

(Oy vey! Holy hell! Squat on the Buddha!)

And the hate-filled rages only get worse the longer you hang around. The first few times you might feel guilty that he got so hurt by a simple comment you made. You try rephrasing and even prefacing your comments with, “I don’t think you’re 100% wrong, and I don’t dislike it completely but…”

(This is called walking on eggshells. Dammit! You should be able to have an opinion about something and feel safe expressing that opinion without feeling like you’ll be instantly attacked and diminished.)

Sociopaths think the kind of love and praise they give to you is carte blanche for them to behave in any way they wish to behave. They keep a running tally of all of the things they did for you “out of the goodness of their hearts.” Since they tell you they love you and think you’re perfect, they expect you to be okay with anything and everything they ask of you.

It’s as if we’re just stupid and lost puppies stumbling around waiting for praise and food all of the time. As if we completely depend on the sociopath for all of our needs. As if all we live for is to kiss his ass and give him some ass. As if we need him in order for our lives to run smoothly and without interference, like a finely-tuned Swiss watch.

(And that’s exactly how the sociopath wants us to be. Completely dependent. But that’s simply delusional!)

And once we start displaying any kind of disobedient behavior, like expressing ourselves, the praise and adoration stops. We’re put in the proverbial doghouse indefinitely. The sociopath withholds those praises like a dog owner withholds biscuits and treats until the dog “learns” to behave better (a.k.a. listens and obeys its master.)

I have a mind. You have a mind. Our minds are our masters, not the sociopath or any other human on the planet.

The sociopath entertains himself daily performing in his one-man show. We’re just his props; he honestly believes that he is the only one that matters.To the sociopath, we are nothing unless we comply. We’re “dead to him” if we continue to “selfishly” insist on using our minds willfully and outside of his little world.

Can you imagine a cluster of these fools in the same room together? We should organize a fake event and send them all an invitation. Let them be our puppets while we sit back and take pictures and video. What do you think would happen? (Bahaha! I know. Wishful thinking, huh?)

Namaste!
~ Paula

(Image source: http://pinterest.com/pin/79024168432465186/)

prison, Paula Carrasquillo, Paula Renee Carrasquillo, Paula Reeves-Carrasquillo, psychopath, sociopath, awareness, dating a sociopath, divorcing a narcissist

Not Everyone Behind Bars is a Sociopath. Not Even Close!

prisonI shared the following volunteer story with Leah Oviedo on her new blog, Up To You Project, dedicated to encouraging community involvement on a local and global scale.

As I wrote it, I thought about what I have learned in recent months about sociopaths and other pathological liars and delusional individuals who get away with the most base crimes across the nation, but rarely, if ever, are prosecuted.

I’m talking about the child molesters, child abusers, rapists, spouse abusers and con artists who I believe are behind the creation and “nurturing” of the majority of petty thieves, drug dealers and addicts that end up in our system.

Here’s a not-so-startling statistic:

“A reported 85 to 90 percent of women who are either currently incarcerated or under the control of the justice system in the United States have a history of domestic and sexual abuse. Risk factors contributing to women’s criminal behavior include substance abuse, mental illness, and spousal abuse.” (Center for American Progress – The Top 5 Facts About Women in Our Justice System)

Most of the people I encountered during my volunteer experience described below simply needed someone to give them hope that there was still good in this world. They needed a little push, a little motivation and incentive to change.

Those who were clearly criminal and evil by nature, I gladly watched return to their cells. There is no changing a sociopathic mind.

My Volunteer Story and What I Learned

In 2004 when I was a graduate student attending Regis University in Denver, CO, I joined AmeriCorps, the domestic-based equivalent of the Peace Corps. The organization I chose was Community Educational Outreach (CEO), a non-profit that outreaches to the at-risk and in-need community members providing free GED, ABE, Life Skills and other valuable classes and training. I took on the volunteer assignment with only one expectation: to help someone pass the GED. I had no idea that I would be gifted with much, much more.

The CEO outreach partner where I chose to begin volunteering was located in a community corrections facility which housed male and female offenders out on probation/parole transitioning back into the community. The program was created due to over-crowding and a need to get these folks out of the “encaged” mindset and into one of independent thinking and doing. Although the facility was run by security guards and other correctional professionals, when the offenders walked into the CEO classrooms, they became students. They were no longer referred to as inmates.

Most of the young people (those under 30) were clearly high-strung and not very trusting of me. Most couldn’t understand why I would wish to help them for nothing. Even after explaining to them that I just wanted to help them, they couldn’t “get it.” I then started answering them with, “Well, if you continue to fail, all of society continues to fail. I want to be a part of a successful community and helping you is a step toward belonging to a healthier community.”

This approach seemed to work. I guess in their thinking, there had to be something in it for me because, more than likely, they were acted upon their entire lives by people who wanted something from them, otherwise they had no value.

There was something in it for me but that “something” was difficult to describe to my students:

  • I helped men who had never had a proper job in their lives fill out applications and compose their first resumes.
  • I got to see a woman who had lost most of her teeth to meth addiction, smile proudly for the first time in many years after we found her a dentist who was willing to give her new teeth pro bono.
  • I saw the simple joy in the eyes of many after passing the GED on their first or second attempt.
  • I got to see that there is hope and that rehabilitation and cognitive therapy and learning programs can help some of the forgotten and thrown away in our society.
  • I also became very aware that many can’t be helped. Many need the correction system because they can never change their mindset.

But I was thankful that I could be a part of a program and project that helped those who desperately wanted to be helped. Regardless of a person’s past or upbringing, they are human and deserve our empathy and trust, at least until they prove, one way or another, that they don’t deserve it.

Why not share your volunteer story with Leah?

Note: Although I began this experience as a volunteer, within weeks of helping I was offered a part-time job but continued working unpaid on Sundays.

Namaste!
~ Paula

 (image source: http://pinterest.com/pin/351912440683909/)

Oh, boy! The sociopath went and got hitched! Lower the curtain on the drama once and for all.

red curtain

You just found out the sociopath has a new girlfriend, a new soul mate. To top it off, he married her!

Your first reaction is to be pissed and angry. I understand where your anger is coming from. But as you work through your emotions, there are a few things you need to keep in mind:

Sociopaths CAN NOT be alone. They must always have someone or something to control. To them, the ultimate is to use people to control other people. He’s using his relationship to control your emotions and to play with your mind. And he is loving every second of your pain.

Do you really care that he is in a new relationship? Do you want to be in a relationship with him? Are you jealous of her?

NO! Of course you answered “no” to all of these.

Your anger is coming from your ego. You are pissed that he duped you. You’re pissed that he fooled everyone into thinking he’s a good guy and you’re a freak. You’re pissed because there is nothing you can do to save or warn his new girlfriend/wife about what is to come (because it will come for her just as it came for you.)

You must remove yourself from his bag of tricks. You must not allow him to be able to manipulate and control your emotions even from a distance. You must learn to be able to remain completely detached. If you allow anything that he says, does or implies with his actions or words to affect you in any way, he is still affecting you and controlling you.

It is not easy to become completely detached as quickly as you want to become completely detached. The only way to get closer to becoming completely detached is to be absolutely certain in your mind that he is what he is: a narcissistic sociopath who lacks the ability to empathize or feel remorse. He has no conscience.

Everything he does and says is for effect and relies upon an audience. Remove yourself from his audience.

For me, I had to stop worrying about warning and trying to save his future girlfriends. I accept the fact that he is still out there reading my blog and calling me crazy to all of his new friends and “followers.” I’m okay with that. I’m okay with him calling my son a spoiled brat, my family enablers, my husband a fat ass and my sisters ugly and fat.

Who the fuck cares what these dark and twisted jackasses think of us and the ones who love us? They have nothing we want. They are no one we would be proud to stand next to. They lack integrity and respect for everyone, including themselves.

Sociopaths are textbook. They are predictable. We need to stop reacting with surprise to their behavior and instead react with a heavy yawn.

They’re predictable and boring characters who only exist if we give them a stage. So drop the curtain on their performance and cancel the show.

Namaste!
~ Paula

save yourself, Paula Carrasquillo, Paula Renee Carrasquillo, Paula Reeves-Carrasquillo, psychopath, sociopath, awareness, dating a sociopath, divorcing a narcissist

That Pesky Sociopath Who Thinks He’s Your Savior

save yourselfHow many times have you heard the following from the sociopath in your life:

“You have problems. You are sick. You need me because everyone else in your life has let you get away with being this way your entire life. You NEED me or you can’t get better.”

I heard it so many times. I’m sure you did, too.

Why is this part of their MO?

Because sociopaths like to be perceived as the hero. They want to be your savior. Saviors are respected and revered. Sociopaths like love being revered. It feeds their superiority complex.

But you didn’t need to be saved from anything when you met the sociopath, right? Me either!! So how did the sociopath convince us we needed to be saved?

By creating the pit we fell into, that’s how.

Generally speaking, when people are confused, people tend to feel lost and in need of help. The sociopath creates the confusion and in turn, our desperation to be saved from it.

How do they create this confusion?

Sociopaths use three rather opposing techniques in tandem to create the confusion: love bombing, gas lighting and devaluing.

Love Bombing and Plans for the Future
The sociopath tells you that everything about you is perfect. You talk about making plans for the future. You talk specific plans. You agree to the plan and the specifics. Everything is seems perfect.

Gas Lighting
At a later date, (maybe as soon as the very next day) you bring up some of the specifics of the plan. You’re told you are mistaken about the specifics of the plan. The sociopath explains the plans back to you, but they aren’t the plans you had agreed to. You are certain they have been altered. The sociopath assures you that they are the same plans you agreed to originally. But you know you never would have agreed to those plans. You know it!

Devaluing
You reject the plan. It’s not what you had talked about. The sociopath calls you a lying, selfish whore for rejecting the plan after having agreed to the plans. You are distraught. You can’t believe the same person who said you were so amazing is now calling you such horrid names.

The pit is being dug.

The cycle continues.

Love bombing, gas lighting, devaluing.
Love bombing, gas lighting, devaluing.
Love bombing, gas lighting, devaluing.
Love bombing, gas lighting, devaluing.

The pit gets deeper.

Depression sets in.

You take on a bad habit: over-eating, drinking, gambling, shopping, sleeping…Whatever it is, you do it to drown out your confusion.

But bad habits do a lot more than drown out the confusion. They turn you into someone and something you dislike.

The pit is too deep to crawl out on your own.

Soon, the sociopath learns of your bad habit, because you can’t hide the pounds you’ve added or the fact you don’t have enough money to pay your bills or you’re hung over, or hell, you just tell him that you’re struggling with something, because we learned a long time ago that the people we love and who love us can handle us even at our worst, right?

So we just assume that telling our “soul mate” (a.k.a. the sociopath we don’t realize is a sociopath) about our struggles will result in a healthy plan of attack to turn those bad habits around.

But it doesn’t work like that with a sociopath. Sociopaths don’t love themselves, so how are they supposed to understand your struggles and provide you with unconditional support and guidance?

They can’t, and they won’t. All they do is continue to use the same three techniques (love bombing, gas lighting and devaluing) sprinkled with lots of shaming and blaming, and Voila! You have yourself a false god. A false savior who continuously repeats:

“You have problems. You are sick. You need me because everyone else in your life has let you get away with being this way your entire life. You NEED me or you won’t get better.”

You’re screwed if you think this guy can help you. YOU. ARE. ROYALLY. SCREWED!

He can’t save you because he doesn’t wish to save you. The truth is that the sociopath created a bunch of lies, diversions and drama to convince you that you are hopeless. He might throw you a bone every now and then, but that’s just to give you hope so you keep holding onto the rope connecting you to his savior facade.

A true savior would take on your pain (not shame you) and get inside the pit with you and lift you up onto his shoulders and support you until you could get back on solid ground and stand on your own two feet.

But that’s exactly the opposite of what a sociopath wants. He wants you desperate, dependent and in NEED of him.

A sociopath doesn’t love you. A sociopath loves the idea of controlling you and keeping you all to himself.

But you are not a possession or an instrument that can be played and tuned to his liking. You do not need the sociopath to complete you, and you certainly don’t need him continuously telling you how worthless and weak you are.

The only thing a sociopath succeeds in doing is making you feel ashamed of your every-day mess ups. Once you fall into the trap of shaming yourself, you become disconnected from your core self. When you become disconnected from your core, you end up making bigger mistakes, mistakes that really cause you harm.

Then the sociopath can say, “See. I told you so. You’re sick. Look what you’ve done! I’m the only one who can save you now.”

I call BS on that. You should, too. These ultimate assholes couldn’t dig themselves out of jar of Jif. 🙂

Save yourself. Walk away and let the healing begin.

Namaste!

(image source: http://pinterest.com/pin/265712446734742994/)

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