Human beings have an enormous capacity for denial.

The mother of the Boston Marathon bombers believes the bombing was faked – that all that blood in the pictures was really paint. George W. Bush, who presided over two wars, and devastated the American economy ( and that of the rest of the world ), says he’s confident he improved the human condition. The West Fertilizer Company had several hundred tons of Ammonium Nitrate fertilizer, and denied there was any risk of explosion – a 100 foot wide crater begs to differ.

There are the people who deny that Obama was born here. There are people who deny we ever landed on the moon. There are those who deny Global warming, or that guns kill people, or that rape is the fault of the rapist, not the victim …

And the wives of monsters seldom realize that they married someone that bad.

The widow of the accused Boston Marathon bomber says it all came as an enormous shock, and people all over America are saying “How could she possibly not have known?”

Women with poor self-images, women from families where domestic violence was common, women with submissive mothers … all of these (and usually all three are true at once) tend to end up in relationships with controlling, manipulative, abusive men. It is the nature of co-dependency … I have a friend who’s dated, and sometimes married one controller after another – even after I tried to teach her how to tell the difference!

Such men are typically charismatic:  in the beginning of a relationship, they can be charming, attentive, everything a woman wants – until the woman is committed to the relationship. Then they begin to revert to their true selves.

Here’s a fair example of clear red flags that my friend should have, but didn’t pick up on – she told me about it, after a date, but it was with minor annoyance, not realization that she’d been with a controlling monster:

They met online, and he had to drive a half hour to get to her place … she offered to visit him, or to meet in the middle, but he shot down her reasonable suggestions out of hand – and insisted very forcefully on picking her up at her home address, while not volunteering his home address in return … “You’ll see when we get there” he told her … (Red Flag number one:  he didn’t want her to have a vehicle handy. He wanted her to be entirely dependent on him, until he chose to take her back. Red Flag number two: the flow of information was entirely one sided … he demanded to know things about her, but wouldn’t give her any info about himself …)

He arrived for their date in a pick-up truck.  He honked for her to come out, rather than going to her door and introducing himself.  (Red Flag number three:  his pleasure and convenience is all that matters, and she had better hop to it!)

On the drive, she tried to engage him in conversation. This was hard as he had a baseball game on the radio. She asked him to turn it down, and he responded that he wanted to listen to the game. His replies to anything else she said were curt, and vague. “I was trying to get to know him,” she said afterward, as the light-bulb began to come on, “But he acted like he wanted to be a mystery …”  (Red Flag Three repeated and underlined !!!!   Manipulators come very close to the clinical definition of ‘psychopath’ … some may be psychopaths … that definition includes, among other things extreme egocentricity: they are the center of the universe … other people matter only insofar as they can be used … other people’s feelings are irrelevant, only his own matters!)

Ok, it seems pretty clear that this guy was a jerk, which was the conclusion my friend was reaching – but I’m not implying he’s a jerk, I’m implying he’s the next thing to a monster!  How can I possibly know if I’m reading the guy right?

Well, when they got to his place, he provided her with a contract, saying that while in his home she would always be completely naked, except for a dog collar, and she would obey every one of his commands, however humiliating!

She replied with words to the equivalent of “Fuck you! Take me home”

Instead he wanted to take her to dinner. She repeated that she wanted to go home. He said they’d just got there and he was tired and didn’t want to get back in the truck right away. At which point she left his house, and called me to come get her.

He started calling her cell, asking her to come back. By the third or fourth call he became abusive. By the time I got there, she’d had to block his number, and was waiting at a public library, as she couldn’t find a police station.

I’m not saying every self-centered jerk out there is a monster:  I’m saying that women with poor self-images are the natural prey of sexual predators – and unless someone has really convinced them to take a hard look at their lives and choices, they will often be entirely unaware of it!  Oh, sure, they know they keep getting in bad relationships – but they don’t understand why, and they very often say things like “He seemed so perfect in the beginning!” and “Why does this keep happening to me? Aren’t there any good men left in the world???”

If this sounds like you, sit down in private, have a glass of wine, and go back over your life … think about the men you’ve been with who turned out to be jerks:  what were the warning signs?  What did they do, early on, that could have tipped you off?

While you’re thinking, consider these classic manipulator ploys:

– “I want to go slow… do things at your pace!”  But later that night, he does everything he can to get in your pants, often apologizing the whole time: “I’m so sorry, but I’ve never felt this way before! I just can’t resist you!”

– “You’re the most perfect woman in the world! I feel like I’ve known you my whole life! Like we’re soul-mates” on the very first date!

– Later, they want all of your time and attention: they become increasing impatient of you wanting to be in touch with friends or family – they begin, in fact, to actively isolate you from anyone who might say “this guy is a jerk!”

– “All we need is each other!!!”

– “Your friend/mother/sister has always had it in for me … she’s jealous of how happy we are and wants to drive a wedge between us!”

There are lots more, but they amount to this:

1) He doesn’t want your attention on anyone but Himself.

2) He cares about his happiness not yours.

3) He tries to separate you from anyone who might talk sense into you.

4) He begins to be paranoid about friends and family.

5) He tries to relocate you away from them.

6) After a fight or disagreement, he seems to remember what happened differently, and insist that his version is correct.

A final word:  manipulators never let anyone off the hook!  Even after the relationship is over, they keep calling, texting, eMailing …

The very best thing you can do with such a person is to block him out of your life in every way you can, and warn all your friends – if you still have any left!


~ by dourscot on April 27, 2013.

One Response to “Denial”

  1. Thanks for the reminder…your words are always wise.

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