Special interest Article;
Anthony J. Iantosca, BCFE
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In my early years as an handwriting examiner/profiler, I found Handwriting Analysis based on American Trait Theory to be a very accurate diagnostic tool in profiling a personality in the complicated task of answering the question "what is the best I can hope for, what is the worst I can expect," from the personality under controlled / uncontrolled circumstances. I realized when I founded the Forensic Services Division of Chin, Wright and Branson, a forensic team working out of a Law Office in Boston with Ronald Rice and Vincent Scalice that with the onset of the computer age and the internet, I would need more. Simply put, people were not going to write as much. I was very accurate in my assessment. Today everyone sends and receives messages by e-mail and text messages. Writing and snail mail is now a modality of the past.
I needed to be able to profile personalities without their handwriting. I was very fortunate to meet a psychiatrist during my years as the in house forensic expert at the Forensic Services Division. I was working with Dr. Rosso's wife, attorney Kim Vo who was one of the attorneys there on a POW-MIA scam. He gave me a first copy of DSM-4, he said "Tony read this, it will help you to understand behavior patterns." Dr. Rosso worked with me for years and was very generous with his time. He answered my never ending questions about behavior and what drives people to do what they do. I studied and researched everything and anything I could get my hands on regarding psychology and behavior patterns. I was very fortunate to work and study courses in other disciplines given by other highly qualified and internationally known forensic experts, who are experts in their fields. I took classes and studied non stop to be able detect the red flags in the personality based on their behavior. Some dysfunctional behavior patterns are very overt and easy to detect. Many are very covert, insidious and slip by the trusting personality's conscious awareness. I use the movie The Wizard of Oz, when explaining these Dysfunctional Personalities. What a person projects and what they are may be two entirely different matters. My job is to educate you and make you aware of dysfunctional behavior patterns, so you will have the courage to walk behind the curtain and see this personality for who and what they truly are. In criminal profiling the profilers have the "what, why, were, how and when." They attempt to determine the "who." In threat assessment profiling we have the "who, where, why, what, how." We attempt to prevent the "when," violence will occur.
This article was not written to malign these personality types. It was written to give you behavior patterns that I have experienced, working and talking to their loved ones who do not or did not understand the change in their partners behavior. I have stated these personalities "were not born that way, they were made that way." The emotional, physical and sometimes sexual abuse they experienced in early childhood by their primary care givers set the templet for their unstable behavior patterns in adulthood. These personalities were never given the love, caring and nurturing that is necessary for healthy development. These personalities can not give to you what they have never experienced themselves. Can these personalities be helped, yes they can. There are many qualified medical health professionals that are specialized in this field that can and do help these very complex personality types lead a better and more emotionally stable life style.
This article was written to explain to the loved ones, family and friends who are involved with these personalities types that are very therapy resistant. These (DP) as I call them do not want to change, many have no interest in changing and believe they are doing nothing wrong.
It is my hope that explaining and educating you on behavior patterns of Dysfunctional Personalities you may detect the warning signs and red flags the will keep you and your loved ones out of harms way. My job as a profiler is not to treat these personality types, I am not a medical professional. My job is to detect them and to keep loving, caring people from getting hurt.
Traits are expressed through behavior.
Past behavior is indicative of future behavior.
Behavior reflects personality.
Over the last twenty years I have worked with many people who are now or have been involved in relationships with emotional vampires. These personalities both male and female come from all walks of life and from every ethnic background. They are called by many different labels by the Medical Community and these labels are also used in popular culture. Dysfunctional Personalities have behavior patterns consistent with the borderlines, narcissist, and psychopath and may have co-morbid crossovers of other dysfunctions as well. Borderlines have narcissistic tendencies and are kissing cousins. Narcissists are not borderlines. Narcissists may have psychopathic tendencies but psychopaths are not narcissists. The American Psychiatric Association in their latest edition of DSM-5 has changed the label of the borderline to Emotional Deregulation Disorder (EDD) to add to the confusion. The name has changed but the behavior patterns remain the same. I use the terms borderline, narcissist, psychopath, etc. for this article because these are terms that most people have heard and understand.
Simply put, a psychopath can live on an Island alone and survive. Being involved with a psychopath, it is not a question of are you going to get hurt, it is a question of when. A narcissist cannot survive on an Island alone. A narcissist needs outside sources other people to validate him/herself. Narcissists cannot validate themselves. Narcissists need narcissistic supply (NP) to survive day to day. Narcissists accomplish this by being a Cerebral (their intellect) or Somatic (their body, looks and by sexual conquests). Narcissists have and need both primary and secondary sources of narcissist supply.
as postulated by; Dr. Sam Vaknin.
In this article I will explain the different behavior patterns of these (DP) Dysfunctional Personalities as I call them. The medical professionals use the terms borderline (EDD), narcissist, histrionic and anti-social personality when explaining these personality types. I will explain my working experience with the borderline with narcissistic behavior patterns. This personality has a combination of both, the behavior patterns of a borderline and a narcissist called a co-morbid crossover. These behavior patterns can be expressed in both men and women. I am not a medical professional. I am a Profiler. I will explain the behavior patterns of these DP. I am explaining the behavior patterns that are consistent with not diagnosed as.
It is very important for those of you who are suffering the pain and anguish having been involved with one of these personalities or are currently involved in a relationship with one now. The problem is not you, I repeat, the problem is not you. The problem is them. In my estimation of all the different Dysfunctional Personalities types the psychopath is the most dangerous because of his/her complete lack of empathy for their victims. The borderline is a close second because of their inability to regulate their emotions when triggered, the narcissist comes in third.
I will try to explain the borderline/ narcissist personality type. These personalities are very complex. The reason being, they have behavior patterns of both a borderline and a narcissist with other dysfunctional behavior patterns combined in one personality profile.
It is very important for you to understand that these Dysfunctional Personalities do not all act the same way. There is no cookie cutter one size fits all template. Their behavior is on a bell curve. Their core issues of early childhood abandonment and emotional abuse set the template for their behavior patterns that they have now carried into their adult life and interactions with others. Their extreme fear of abandonment and engulfment fears, their low self esteem and a true lack of sense of self, who and what they are is the same but they will act out very differently from one another when their abandonment / engulfment fears are triggered real or imagined.
The best way for me to explain their behavior is this way, these personalities want to break your windows (your heart) when they are triggered. One will throw a rock, one will throw a stick, one will use a hammer, and one will use a BB gun. All act out differently, the end result is the same, your windows (your heart), is broken. Borderlines/narcissists are the most difficult to understand when their abandonment fears are triggered. Their behavior can run from mild abuse and gas lighting tactics to extreme violence, depending on their emotional make up, intensity level and other underlying traits detected in their personality profile. The deciding factor is the personalities intensity level. Their mental strength not their physical strength. This intensity level is extremely important and on a bell curve. The main reason that personalities do not act and respond in the exact same manner. The heavier the pressure (intensity level) of the Dysfunctional Personality the more extreme their actions will be.
These personalities want love and to be with someone who loves, believes and understands them in the early stages of the relationship. The honeymoon stage. Emotions run high, the sex is great, you spend time together, and you bond to each other, learn about each other, and respect each other. The relationship starts off well, they are the man or woman of your dreams. For normal functioning personalities this is what starts to build a strong bonding relationship with your partner. For the Dysfunctional Personality it has just the opposite effect it triggers their abandonment fears. Why? These personalities believe that anyone they have ever loved has left them or will abandon them. You will be not different. This is all these personalities have ever known since childhood. When things are going smooth in your relationship and you are happy, these personalities become just the opposite, they have made a mental association in their mind from childhood that pain and chaos = love. Without drama, chaos, pain there is no love. They love the chase and the seduction phase this makes them feel alive. When these personalities want you they do not care if you are married, living with someone or in a relationship. If they can pull you away from your partner this just fuels their ego. They love it.
Dysfunctional Personalities have had many chaotic relationships; everyone has hurt them and abused them. All of their past relationships sound like the Amityville Horror. Abuse, drugs, rapes, fighting, affairs, restraining orders, abortions, drinking you name it. They cannot regulate their emotions. They cannot self sooth, so they have many reckless behavior patterns to sooth their inner pain. Drugs, alcohol, eating, sexual affairs, spending, reckless driving and in the worst case scenarios self harm. Yet they are never at fault. It is and always will be your fault.
These personalities are extremely jealous and insecure. They do not believe they are worthy of true love, that does not exist in their mind. They do not have a sense of their true self worth. It is important to remember that these (DP) were not born this way, they were made this way. These personalities when triggered will split you. This is their defense to impending abandonment. They love you one minute they hate you the next.
Their push pull tactics come here, go away will drive you insane. These personalities are notorious for cutting off their finger to save their arm. If they believe you are going to leave them, real or imagined. They will leave you before you leave them, they will cheat on you before you cheat on them. Everything and anything can and will trigger their abandonment fears. If you are happy, if you spend too much time in your work, if you have very close friends, if you are independent and self confident. Anything that takes your attention off them will trigger them into action. These personalities do not love, believe in or respect themselves do not expect them to love and respect you. Trying to prove to them otherwise is like pouring water into an endless pit. It is very important for you to remember you are dealing with a child in an adult body. Trying to talk and express yourself rationally to these personalities is a waist of your time. Just like trying to talk to a child who is having a temper tantrum. You talk the child screams, yells and cries.
Many of my clients who are in relationships with these Dysfunctional Personalities have asked me why do they rage against me? Why do they attack me? Yell, scream, break things and in some extreme cases, physically attack me. I am loving and giving, I have done nothing to make them so mad. Yes, you have done nothing wrong. In the mind of the Dysfunctional Personality it is their fear of being found out, of being exposed for the insecure, needy personality they are. Being exposed triggers their abandonment fears. That fear triggers the rage.
The best defense of these personalities is a good offense. Everything is your fault, this tactic takes the attention of their core issues, of jealousy, insecurity, lack of self worth and projects that behavior on to you. You start to question your behavior rather than paying attention to theirs. Every time their mask starts to slip and they think you are starting to figure them out, the rage attacks begin. The last thing these Dysfunctional Personalities want you to do, is walk behind their curtain. Lets walk behind the curtain of these Dysfunctional Personalities and expose some of the traits and behavior patterns that constitute what I have termed a Dysfunctional Personality.
This article is my personal experience working and talking with these personalities. Also working with their significant other, explaining and helping them understand why their life is in such chaos and pain because of the extreme change in their behavior from the once loving, caring husband, wife, boyfriend, girlfriend. To someone they do not recognize. When handwriting was available, I looked for certain traits that would indicate future problems. The traits I would detect, identify, analyze and evaluate are based on a scale of 1-10. One being the lowest point of measurement ten being the highest point of measurement. Handwriting Analysis does not diagnose a medical issue/problem.
Only a medical professional can provide that diagnoses. My threat assessment profile would give me the red flags that would indicate future problems once the honeymoon /seduction phase of the relationship was over.
When handwriting was not available, I based my profiles on behavior patterns that were consistent over a period of time. I have conducted extensive research and study and have worked and interviewed hundred's of people over the last twenty years on the behavior patterns of these personality types.
The list of traits below was consistent in all of the Dysfunctional Personalities I profiled. All of the Dysfunctional Personalities were extreme in their behavior patterns, all were intense personalities (heavy pressured 4-6 pressure range). Their emotional make up ran from Ambivert (emotionally controlled) to Extreme Extrovert (emotionally expressive). The emotional make up told me how quickly they would respond when triggered. Their intensity level pressure factor (mental strength) would indicate how extreme these traits would be expressed. The heavy pressured Ambivert was the most explosive when triggered. Ambiverts suppress their emotions on a day to day basis to begin with until they cannot control their emotions any longer and will just explode like a Jack in the box in a fit of rage and anger.
All of the Dysfunctional Personalities (DP) rated high in the following traits and behavior patterns. I have listed their traits and the behavior patterns expressed through those traits.
The language will be extreme from here on in. This is not for the faint of heart or people who are easily offended. The language is based on my working experience talking to my clients, face to face conversations with Dysfunctional Personalities, phone conversations and Statement Analysis of verbal and written threatening letters and restraining orders .
Behavior Patterns and Traits
Once the profiler/examiner has identified the emotional make up of the personality, the most important trait the Profiler/Examiner must identify is the personalities intensity level is (energy/mental strength) of the personality. Their intensity level is the energy that drives their traits and behavior patterns, both positive and negative. How do we detect this trait in a person's profile or handwriting?
What do we look for? In our discipline we have six degrees of pressure or intensity. P=Pressure or the writers intensity level. This is shown by the thin/thickness of the handwriting stroke on the paper/document. Let's use your cars gas tank as a parallel to compare with. The more gasoline in your car's gas tank, the faster and longer that car can be driven. Also, the more explosive power that car has if you were to drop a match into the car's gas tank. Writing pressure/intensity tells the examiner the degree of pressure/intensity of the writer. This is a true measurement of how much energy (gasoline) he/she has in their psychic gas tank at any given time. Intensity is a measure of mental strength, not physical strength. Mental strength (intensity level) is a trait you were born with. It was passed down from your blood line. It is an intrinsic trait.
When handwriting was not available how do you measure the personality's intensity level? Intense personalities are driven personalities, there is a no nonsense way about them. It does not matter if they are In a positive or negative frame of mind their endurance is of such a nature that these personalities can and will achieve any goal they put their mind to.
They have an aura about them, these are the personalities who "talk the talk and walk the walk." Watch their behavior in work, play, exercise, study everything they do has an intense /extreme edge about them. With extreme heavy pressured personalities from P-4 to P-6 their behavior is on the extreme side in every aspect of their lives. Male or female it makes no difference. Their intensity is of such a nature that they have a tendency to kill a mosquito with an elephant gun. This is the bell curve and the main reason why no two personalities act the exact same way. There is a marked difference in the behavior patterns of a Dysfunctional Personality in the P-2, P-3 pressure range compared to a Dysfunctional Personality in the P-4, P-5, P-6. The more intense the personality is the more extreme and volatile their dysfunctional behaviors will be expressed.
Light pressure: this writer/personality called a ( P1- P2). These writers are the least intense or extreme in their behavior. These writers have a quarter tank of gas in their psychic gas tank at any point in time. These personalities are kind, generous and loving people. The lighter the pressure the less energetic, troublesome and assertive. These personalities will be shy, self conscious, they have poor endurance and overall will be gentle and accommodating. The last thing a light pressure writer wants is a confrontation with anyone.
Moderate pressure: this writer/personality called a (P3). Is the norm for society these personalities have a half of tank of gas in their gas tank at anyone given time. These personalities are a sign of control. They like to walk a straight line, keep a low profile not bother anyone and basically live their life in a moderate untroubled way. They are accommodating, friendly loyal punctual and usually stay with one person or a position of employment for as long as possible. Although this writer when in a negative frame of mind can be troublesome when set off, their endurance is short lived. Once the emotional upheaval has passed they will calm down and return to their normal pattern of behavior.
Medium pressure: this writer/personality called a (P4). Personalities with this degree of intensity are very assertive with good staying power (endurance) due to their Psychic gas tank being three quarters full at any one given time. Lighter pressure personalities in the P-1 to P-3 have a tendency to aggravate the P-4 personality. Simply because they are considered indecisive, shy with poor confidence, illogical goals, lazy and at times to bogged down with details.
Medium heavy pressure: this writer/personality called a (P5). When we get into this area of pressure, we are talking about those individuals who have unusual amounts of energy, creativity, drive, endurance and staying power. This is an indictor of deep sensuality and artistic tendencies in all forms. When in a positive frame of mind they will indulge you with pleasure. They are gregarious, aggressive, and confident, with unbelievable staying power and strong lasting endurance. When in a negative frame of mind, however they can become very aggressive and abusive. They can be unforgiving if offended. Due to their intensity they absorb as a sponge, both positive and negative forms of emotion. When they love they love deeply. When they are angry or hate, they are consumed by the emotion. The key here is their endurance. This degree of pressure / intensity is something you should never consider provoking. When they are good they are beautiful, but when they bad they are a force to contend with.
Heavy pressure extreme: this writer/personality called a (P-6). This pressure range is the most volatile, the most dangerous. It is rare that you will find someone in this pressure range. If you do you will not have to concern yourself, since they will judge you as being weak, wimpish or submissive and they will advise you of their feelings very quickly. Hitler, Mussolini, Stalin, Osama Bin Laden and Bernard Goetz are some of the more infamous P-6’s. The crimes these personalities committed speak for it. These personalities are very explosive and cruel people. They are uncontrollable once they are set off. P-6’s are extreme in everything they do, love making, sexual needs, creativity, endurance, violence, working abilities, pain and suffering, and the list goes on and on. The key here is the full tank of gas these personalities possess in their physic gas tank at any one given time. When these personalities are set off and their gas tank explodes believe me you will know it.
No two Dysfunctional Personalities will act the exact same way. The emotional make up and the intensity (mental strength) and other underlying traits found in their profile will have them act out differently from one another. Their intensity (mental strength) is the key as to how extreme and volatile these traits and behavior patterns will be expressed. Let's start with trait one (1) Jealousy.
Trait Number One (1)
Jealousy is the great insecurity. This fear trait rated extremely high in all of the (DP) I profiled. This jealousy was sexual jealousy or what is called morbid jealousy is the most dangerous type of jealousy. These extremely insecure personalities were the most volatile when their abandonment fears were triggered. They accused their partners of everything under the sun. They checked everything, their panties, their car, their phone, their face book page, tried to isolate them from family and friends, they are jealous of their hobbies, anything that took attention away from them. You must remember with the insecure personality, their imagination becomes their reality. They watched their partner like a Hawk every time they went out.
Example #1 Heavy Pressured Male Ambivert
One lovely client who I am working with now called me in tears because she triggered his abandonment fears when she looked out the car window when her (DP) boyfriend, now husband was driving, her car by the way. A black man was walking by; he accused her of looking at him. He lost his mind. He is now convinced she wants to have sex with black men. He went home and tore her house apart. He is now trying to force her into sexual acts that she will not do. This was proof to him she does not love him enough; he needs to be pacified and reassured of her undying love for him. So having sex with two or three men while he watches is the proof he said, he needs, that she loves him. She will not do it. The gas lighting begins. So he splits her, from loving her to hating her. To show his contempt for her and everything she has worked for, starting with her lovely home where he lives and is very jealous of, because it is her house. He now will come home and will piss in her kitchen sink while she is cooking dinner. He goes off into the other room and watches porno films and masturbates in front of her. He tells her he would rather play with himself than have sex with a dried up old ugly witch like her!
She is only one year older than he is. The only way these (DP) feel better about themselves is to tear you down, to make you second guess yourself, to destroy your confidence and self esteem. They must destroy in you what they lack in themselves.
When she talks to me, I explain to her that she must set boundaries with him. Do not let his gas lighting tactics and abusive behavior undermine you. With these (DP) you must command their respect. When she stands up for herself he back down for a little while, she thinks he is back to being the loving man she married. All he is doing is reeling her back in. Once he feels she is back under his control, the nonsense starts all over again. He starts again with his (push pull) tactics with her. The abuse gets progressively worse. This intermittent behavior pattern is what constitutes (trauma bonding). This man wants me dead.
I helped her to understand his personality, information is power. The last thing these insecure personalities want is for you to become informed. They use what is called in Psychology as reaction formation taking on the opposite behavior pattern of true emotion they are feeling inside them. Their mask is one of a confident, cocky, self assured personality that must show you that he/she could care less about you, they could care less if you leave them, they will replace you in five minutes. This tactic is nothing more than what is called ego protection. Nothing could be further from the truth; in reality they are highly insecure three years olds who are very fearful that you will abandon them. A pain they can not deal with. A pain they have been dealing with since childhood.
Example #2 Heavy Pressured Female Extrovert
Another client I was working with who was a (DP) believed her new boyfriend was cheating on her; again their imagination becomes their reality. He was not cheating on her. Nothing I could say to her would change her mind. Their relationship was not even one month old. She called me up and said "Tony that son of a bitch is cheating on me, I know it! I will fix that prick!" I knew somehow he triggered her abandonment fears. When in this emotional state these (DP) will listen to nothing. She was screaming at me at the top of her lungs. She hung up the phone. She called me up a few weeks later.
"Tony, I was arrested and given a restraining order." "I asked, what the hell happened?" She said "Tony, I just lost it. I broke into his house when he went to work, I tore up every couch, curtain, bed, pillow, chairs everything and anything I could get my hands on, into shreds. I took all his cloths, shoes, underwear, socks, put them in his front lawn and set fire to them, I watched them burn, I watched him burn"
Extreme jealousy is a form of insanity, there is no logic to these personalities when they are triggered. In one case I worked on, I heard these words "If I can't have her, nobody will have her."
I talked with this man for over two weeks; I conducted a Threat Assessment Profile on him for the client who hired me. I stated point blank this very jealous male would harm his wife, she was in imminent danger. Two weeks later I received a call from the client who hired me. He killed his wife in a very horrific fashion. An act of extreme violence on an innocent woman that has haunted me to this day.
With these Dysfunctional Personalities jealousy is the most dangerous and the most corrosive behavior pattern. Jealousy is the great insecurity. All of us have felt a little insecure at times. This is not a problem; we deal with it in a reasonable manner. We have a healthy opinion of our own self worth. Most of us can validate ourselves from within we do not need others to validate our own self worth. These (DP) cannot. They need others to do so.
With these (DP) their jealousy fears does not mean that Suzy Q has a new mink coat and I do not. This is more in line with envy which is the kissing cousin of jealousy. Many times jealousy and envy are confused with one another. Jealousy is the feeling that the personality is not getting the love, attention, affection or admiration that he/she feels they deserve at this stage in their lives. When jealousy enters into the pathological area such as (sexual jealousy) or as it is labeled morbid jealousy, also called the Othello Syndrome. That is when jealousy has entered into a very dangerous and volatile area. This is where you will hear such statements as "if I can't have him or her nobody will," enter into the picture. Extremely jealous personalities want to own and possess another person (you) which is a physiological and psychological impossibility. Not to the extremely jealous personality. There are warning signs early in the relationship that should flag you to the possibility that your new love interest may be a very possessive and insecure personality. Handwriting Analysis is the quickest way to detect the trait of jealousy and how consistent the trait is in the personality with the other underlying traits the will reinforce or reduce this fear trait and its potential for violence on a scale of one through ten.
When the handwriting is not available early on in the relationship there are red flags behavior patterns that you should be aware of, remember falling in love takes time. Personalities who fall deeply in love with you after three or four dates is always suspect. Personalities who need to call or text you all day, check up on you, want to know who you are with, where you are going? asking what time you will be home? Becoming angry if you want time to spend time with your friends or family. Becoming involved in every aspect of your life in the early stages of your relationship. Becomes moody or angry when you want to do something that does involve him/her. Violates your personal space, checking your cell phone, computer. Wants to move the relationship faster than you would like, talks about moving in with you, getting married. Talks in terms that you are the one magic person that completes him or her. Extremely jealous personalities are very controlling. You become their possession an object. Never confuse jealousy with love.
Other behavior patterns I have associated in my working experience with these (DP) was the correlation between their insecurity/jealousy and their low sense of self worth and what is called Attachment Styles. There are four attachment styles: Secure, Anxious Pre-occupied, Avoidant, Fearful.
This correlation was also shown in how these personalities deal with their abandonment Issues;
the Dysfunctional Personality (borderline/narcissist) behavior pattern was a combination of anxious pre occupied and fearful.
During the seduction phase they would exhibit an Anxious Pre-occupied Attachment style. When they split you, going from loving one minute, to hating you the next. The Fearful Attachment Style would emerge.
The narcissist behavior pattern was more Avoidant.
They would deal with their abandonment this way, if you cannot get close to me, you cannot hurt me.
I will list the four Attachment Styles below:
Securely attached people tend to agree with the following statements: "It is relatively easy for me to become emotionally close to others. I am comfortable depending on others and having others depend on me. I don't worry about being alone or having others not accept me." This style of attachment usually results from a history of warm and responsive interactions with relationship partners. Securely attached people tend to have positive views of themselves and their partners. They also tend to have positive views of their relationships. Often they report greater satisfaction and adjustment in their relationships than people with other attachment styles. Securely attached people feel comfortable both with intimacy and with independence. Many seek to balance intimacy and independence in their relationship.
People who are anxious or preoccupied with attachment tend to agree with the following statements: "I want to be completely emotionally intimate with others, but I often find that others are reluctant to get as close as I would like. I am uncomfortable being without close relationships, but I sometimes worry that others don't value me as much as I value them." People with this style of attachment seek high levels of intimacy approval, and responsiveness from their partners. They sometimes value intimacy to such an extent that they become overly dependent on their partners-a condition colloquially termed clinginess. Compared to securely attached people, people who are anxious or preoccupied with attachment tend to have less positive views about themselves. They often doubt their worth as a partner and blame themselves for their partners' lack of responsiveness. People who are anxious or preoccupied with attachment may exhibit high levels of emotional expressiveness, worry, and impulsiveness in their relationships.
People with a dismissive style of avoidant attachment tend to agree with these statements: "I am comfortable without close emotional relationships. It is very important to me to feel independent and self-sufficient, and I prefer not to depend on others or have others depend on me." People with this attachment style desire a high level of independence. The desire for independence often appears as an attempt to avoid attachment altogether. They view themselves as self-sufficient and invulnerable to feelings associated with being closely attached to others. They often deny needing close relationships. Some may even view close relationships as relatively unimportant. Not surprisingly, they seek less intimacy with relationship partners, whom they often view less positively than they view themselves. Investigators commonly note the defensive character of this attachment style. People with an Avoidant attachment style tend to suppress and hide their feelings, and they tend to deal with rejection by distancing themselves from the sources of rejection (i.e., their relationship partners).
People with a fearful style of avoidant attachment tend to agree with the following statements: "I am somewhat uncomfortable getting close to others. I want emotionally close relationships, but I find it difficult to trust others completely, or to depend on them. I sometimes worry that I will be hurt if I allow myself to become too close to others." People with this attachment style have mixed feelings about close relationships. On the one hand, they desire to have emotionally close relationships. On the other hand, they tend to feel uncomfortable with emotional closeness. These mixed feelings are combined with negative views about themselves and their partners. They commonly view themselves as unworthy of responsiveness from their partners, and they don't trust the intentions of their partners. Similarly to the Avoidant attachment style, people with a Fearful attachment style seek less intimacy from partners and frequently suppress and hide their feelings. Instead, they are much less comfortable initially expressing affection.
Trait Number Two (2)
Hyper Sensitive / Explosively Sensitive to Criticism pertaining to self and function.
These traits rated very high in all of the handwriting samples I analyzed and in the behavior patterns when handwriting was not available.
I want to explain these traits and what caused them before I explain how the (DF) responds to being rejected, ridiculed, criticized, or punished. I will identify and discuss the traits of sensitivity to criticism pertaining to oneself and sensitivity to criticism pertaining to the personalities function. To be fair we must remember the (DF) was not born this way, they were made this way.
All of us are somewhat sensitive to criticism, no one wants to be rejected or ridiculed. It is the degree of these sensitivities and what caused this fear/defensive trait, that will be the focus of this article.
Writers who have sensitivity traits in their handwriting were not born with this fear/defensive trait, rather it was developed during our early years over the day to day fears of being rejected, ridiculed, criticized or punished.
For example, I am sure you have known or know someone who has an overweight child. There is always either a family member or friend who just has to give this child a nickname, like "porky" "fatty" "my little piglet" and so on. This person thinks this nickname is funny or cute, however, the child most likely will not think it is very amusing, and may be feeling extremely rejected and ridiculed. Also constant comparing the child to other siblings or family members in an attempt motivate the child to perform better in school, sports, or behavior patterns etc. Will only fuel the child's feelings of low self worth and feeling they are never good enough, they will always feel that no matter how hard they may try, they will never live up to their parents, family, teachers expectations. This tactic used by adult care givers only reaffirms the child's inner narrative and belief that they are not good enough, they are worthless and can never be loved for who and what they are.
Because the subconscious mind has no conception of time and does not reason nor rationalize these unpleasant memories can and will resurface when this trait is triggered twenty or thirty years after these negative childhood names/memories have long been forgotten. The reason for this is the emotion either positive or negative that was attached to the event. Strong emotions anchor these memories in our sub conscious mind and are part of episodic or auto biographical memory. It is very common to find this adult to be extremely sensitive to any comments with respect to his/her weight, height, eyes, hair, anything pertaining to themselves on a personal nature and to react in a very negative way. The reason being when this negative memory is brought up to conscious awareness the negative emotion attached to the past event is brought up with it. The same applies to sensitivity to criticism pertaining to ones function. A function can include the personality's job performance, parenting skills, artistic skills, etc. Whatever it is the personality does and how well he/she through their own perspective does regarding that function. This is also an attack on their ego. To many personalities their face to the world is projected by what they do.
Sensitivity to criticism pertaining to self is found in the lower case letter "d." Sensitivity to criticism pertaining to ones function is found in the lower case letter "t." The width of the upper loop on the "d" and "t" will tell us how sensitive the personality is. The wider the loop the more sensitive to criticism the personality is. Very large over inflated upper loops found in the "t" and "d" will tell you this personality are explosively sensitive to any form of rejection, ridicule, criticism or punishment. The personalities emotional make up and their intensity level will tell us how volatile their reaction will be. Extroverts will respond rather quickly. Ambiverts who are more emotionally controlled personalities will suppress and then explode when they have reached their saturation point.
Sensitivity to criticism in a personalities profile can be an asset as well as a detriment depending on the course of action he/she takes.
A personality who has low self esteem and lacks confidence in his/her self may chose to do very little or only attempt little short term goals or a level of perfection that they know they can a achieve. Never leaving their personal or professional comfort level.
Personalities who have good confidence and self esteem will strive to attain a level of perfection in their work environment or personal appearance to become the very best they can be. They will stop at nothing to achieve their goal. A confident personality will accomplish this in a healthy mature fashion.
Regardless of the course of action taken, the personality believes their course of action will reduce their risk of being further rejected, ridiculed, criticized or punished.
The (DP) Dysfunctional Personalities sensitivities are of such a nature that they bring the term "walking on eggshells" to a new level. Their eggshells are filled with Nitro Glycerin. These personalities are hypersensitive to well, just about everything. Any remark no matter how slight or innocent can and will set these personalities off. These personalities are hyper vigilant to any form of rejection, ridicule, criticism or punishment, "real or imagined." A look, a sigh, a huff or puff on your part is taken as an attack upon their fragile ego and sense of self worth. Their behavior can range from sulking, giving you the silent treatment, becoming distant, to rage, anger and outright aggression. Any criticism of their behavior reactivates their core shame and will trigger their abandonment fears. These personalities cannot tolerate being seen as anything less than perfect. When they are set off, attempting to have any rational conversation with them is a waist of your time and effort. They will turn everything back on to you, you caused it, and it will always be your fault. These personalities are never at fault. With these personalities the best defense is a good offence. It is impossible to have a rational adult conversation with a three year old. When you express your concerns, when you attempt to hold them accountable for their abusive/immature actions or behaviors. They will hold you in contempt, a primitive childhood defense tactic called cognitive dissonance. They will yell, scream, argue, throw things, break household items and in the worst case scenarios physically attack you. Tearing you down, blaming you for their behavior will reduces the impact of the disagreement or perceived criticism off of them, back on to you.
In one case this Dysfunctional Personality looked at anything less than hard core porno style sex from his girlfriend as a form of rejection of his abilities. He accused her of not being into him, that his penis was too small. He could not satisfy her. This was not the case at all. He accused her of being a cold frigged witch. All of his past girlfriends told him he was the greatest lover they ever had. In his mind he was the best thing since the invention of the wheel. He stopped having sex with her, would not touch her. He would masturbate in front of her instead of having sex with her. This woman's heart was broken. Finely when she could not take his lack of sexual interest in her anymore she confronted him and asked why? His response "What the hell are you talking about; you stopped having sex with me, Witch." With these delusional thinking personalities any rational conversation regarding their abusive behavior goes something like this, "Ok honey, we will flip a coin to see who is right or wrong here. Heads I win, tails you lose." Get my point. As I have said many times before, it is ok to visit Disney Land, these Dysfunctional Personalities live there.
Trait Number Three (3)
Egotistical / Megalomaniac / Narcissistic Personality
The term narcissism hails from Greek mythology in their story of the boy who was doomed to fell in love with his own reflection as he was looking in a pool of water. His punishment for refusing to accept an offer of love by Echo a mountain nymph. The terms egotistical / megalomaniac were the old terms for what is called today, a narcissistic personality.
I want to repeat this statement again. As all of you know we do not or can not diagnose a medical issue based on a sample of handwriting. At this time there is no scientific evidence to substantiate those claims. Also we would be breaking two laws within the Commonwealth of Massachusetts as well as many other States within the USA. Saying that, there are traits and behavior patterns that will give me a good indication of the personalities emotional make up, their thoughts, feelings and how they may respond under controlled / uncontrolled circumstances. Many of the profiles I have conducted over the years did not show the traits of an egotistical/vain, or moody behavior in their handwriting. It was their behavior patterns that I have studied and researched over the years that exposed the insecure (DP). There are many theories on how narcissism was developed in a personality.
The focus of this section is the narcissists behavior patterns in their inter-personal relationships with, a husband, wife, lovers and friends. The narcissist must be the center of your world. They need to be the center of attention. They are superior and all knowing. As long as you are catering to their every whim, showing them never ending attention narcissistic supply love and devotion you will be in good standing with the narcissist. The narcissist cannot validate themselves, they need constant outside sources (you) to validate them and their sense of self worth. They are the human vampire bat. They suck the emotional blood out of the living. When that source has dried up and is no longer of value, they drop you and move on to their next victim/source. You are only an extension of the narcissist. If you show any independence, autonomy, confidence and a mind of your own this is a threat to the narcissist's self importance, that will not be tolerated by the narcissist. When the narcissist believes you will expose them for the insecure personalities they are, they have only one goal in mind, to destroy you emotionally, professionally and in the worst case scenario physically. The pathological narcissist has no empathy.
In relationships why do narcissistic personality types hate intimacy? The reason for their distain is complicated. For a lonely deprived type, postulated by; Wendy T. Behary, LCSW, the main reason is their fear of reliving the pain of early childhood emotional abandonment and not receiving the love and emotional nurturing by their primary care givers mother / father, etc. The narcissist was never shown or experienced unconditional love and caring. So they cannot give to you what they have never experienced. They learned at a very early age it is me against the world. No one can be trusted. To the narcissist love and intimacy is a weakness. This weakness is for the mental midgets not for someone as powerful as the narcissist. This narrative is what he/she tells themselves everyday. This is how he/she rationalizes their internal pain. So for the narcissist keeping you at arms length emotionally is their safety net.
In their mind, if I do not let you get to close to me emotionally, you cannot hurt me.
The narcissist is always looking for their ideal love. This is a very childlike thought process. For the spoiled /dependent type, as postulated by; Wendy T. Behary, LCSW, the child gets love and attention from their primary care givers, yet as children they do not have to give anything back in return. These types were never given age-appropriate skills for managing tasks and social interactions with others or they grow up in a home where they were lead to believe they are better than others and to having special rights and privileges. All the child knows is he/she is loved, accepted and taken care of. The child takes and takes. The narcissist expects the same treatment from their mates, lovers and friends as an adult. This immature way of looking at relationships as the narcissist grows up never works out. As adults we give and take and work together to make our relationships work. The narcissist just takes and takes giving nothing back in return. The narcissist is very good in the early stages of their relationships. They can act very loving, caring, being the man or woman of your dreams. They love the chase and the narcissist supply (attention) you are giving them. As long as you are not putting emotional pressure on them in the form of wanting love, intimacy back from them in return. These personality types must be the center of attention. These Dysfunctional Personalities cannot validate themselves, they always need outside sources (you), to validate their sense of self worth. I believe in my experience working with these emotional vampires that there are a few people that slip past the false self and get to the true inner child. I have called them the one per centers. These people become the secondary source of narcissist supply. They are meaningful to the narcissist. This causes the narcissist great emotional confusion and fear. Now that you are close to me, you can abandon me, you can hurt me. This is a pain they can dish out to others but cannot handle themselves. Most primary sources of narcissist supply are nothing more than two dimensional card board cut outs to these (DP). They will use you, abuse you and discard you like yesterdays newspaper. They objectify you and will use you as a masturbation tool. They lack any empathy for the pain they cause others.
The secondary source of narcissist supply is their insurance policy, as postulated by Dr. Sam Vaknin. This could be their boyfriend, girlfriend, husband, wife, etc. These people are meaningful to the narcissist. The narcissist will come back to them when their primary sources have dried up. The secondary source gets them back on their emotional feet, tells them how wonderful they are, gives them praise and attention, they are a security blanket.
For example: When a vampire bat cannot go out and feed it stays back in the cave to watch all the pups, their sisters and brothers secondary source comes back and regurgitates blood to keep them alive. The narcissist is the same, without narcissistic supply (blood) they die. When the narcissist loses their secondary source it causes them great pain. They may act as if they do not care, play the distancing act or silent treatment game, a tactic called ego protection. Believe me they are feeling emotional pain and a lot of it. They have taken a major hit to their ego. You have given them their worst nightmare, rejection and abandonment.
As soon as you seek love, attention and to be treated as an equal you will see a complete change in their behavior. They will start finding fault with you, everything about you that the narcissist loved at the beginning of your relationship he/she will now find fault with. They will start picking at you, fighting with you, always unhappy with you, a defense tactic called splitting. This defense tactic is also very visible in the moody/emotionally unstable personality type also called a borderline personality. They love you one minute and hate you the next. Narcissists and borderlines are kissing cousins. Both fear abandonment and are reliving old childhood emotional pains/traumas. They just walk a different road to end up at the same location. For the narcissist their road is not letting you get to close to them, therefore you can not hurt or expose me for the insecure personality I am. For the borderline they want to get close to you, they want you to love them, as soon as they feel their love for you is becoming to overpowering to them (engulfment fears) their fear of you abandoning them kicks in real or imagined, most of the time it is imagined. They leave you before you can leave, abandon and hurt them. For the people who have fallen in love with these personalities your road is a very long and painful one. If you believe you can and will change them you are fooling yourself. Only a licensed medical professional trained in this complex personality type can help them in understanding their behavior and the damage it causes others. These personality types are very therapy resistant.
When the trait of the egotistical / vain personality was detected in the handwriting it is found in the upper extensions of the lower case letters "b", "t", "h" "k" "d" and an over inflated capitol letters and the capitol "I" that are over two/three times higher than the mundane letters. The other traits that would flag the profiler that the personality in question would be a problem are;
Egotistical/vain, jealousy, low Self esteem, low confidence, low goals, domineering, exaggeration, ostentation, self/willful deceit, fantasy, sensitive to criticism to self/function, over active Imagination, talkativeness, braggart, temper, deep need for attention.
In my research and work over the years, I would now add sexual capabilities / carnal and domineering behavior to the above list. The reason for this is, narcissist personalities can acquire their attention (narcissist supply) in one of two ways as postulated by; Dr. Sam Viknin. We have cerebral and somatic narcissists. One acquires the attention by Intellectual means (cerebral) and the other by sexual conquests (somatic).
The sub set of traits that would indicate the potential for violent and aggressive behavior when these (DP) are triggered would be and not limited to:
Aggression, anger, vindictiveness, brutality, corrugations (heavy muddy pasty handwriting) inquisitiveness and tenacity (possessiveness,) garland thinking process (quick) strong willpower, determination and persistence are very positive traits that will drive the personality to succeed in any goal or task. Positive or negative.
It must be understood that no two personalities will act the exact same way. Just as there are no two finger prints the same and no two people write the exact same way, no two Dysfunctional Personalities will act the same way. Their core issues are the same but that is where it ends. The emotional make up, intensity (mental strength) and other reinforcing or reductive traits must now be analyzed. There is a marked difference in the behavior patterns of an Introvert or Ambivert compared to an Extrovert. The intensity of the personality will also have a marked difference in their behavior patterns and how extreme those behavior patterns will be expressed.
To acquire a better understanding of the narcissistic personality type, the causes and behavior patterns of these very complex personalities please read:
Disarming the narcissist by Wendy T. Behary, LCSW
Malignant Self Love: Narcissism Revisited by Dr. Sam Vaknin
Dangerous Personalities by Joe Navarro FBI Special Agent (Ret.)
Trait Number Four (4)
Moodiness (Emotionally Unstable)
On a therapeutic and forensic level the emotional unstable (moodiness) is found in variable slant patterns on samples of handwriting. You will see handwriting slanting from left to right, straight up, back to the right and left again. The slant pattern is not consistent. The behavior patterns exhibited by the personality in question are also very inconsistent. Their emotions fluctuate from emotional expression to emotional suppression. Moodiness is best described as a stress/trauma that is yet to be identified. This stress/trauma could be caused by a physical, psychological or medical Issue of some sort. Anytime moodiness is identified it is always best to suggest that the personality get a medical check up from their Medical Care Professional to rule out any possible underlying medical issue that is yet to be identified.
Extreme moodiness when detected is an instability trait. These personalities are and can be very unstable and unpredictable in their behavior patterns. You never know what side of the bed they are getting up on from day to day, hour to hour or in some extreme cases, minute to minute. These personalities can love you today and hate you tomorrow. Be happy one minute, sad the next. With extreme heavy pressure and other hostility traits as listed below that are detected, identified, analyzed and evaluated in a profile these personalities can be extremely volatile, unpredictable and violent in their behavior patterns. You never know what will trigger them. Moodiness is not to be confused with what is called Bipolar Disorder although the behavior patterns may appear similar in appearance and behavior at times, they are two different situations. Research has stated that the personality with Bipolar Disorder does not exhibit the psychotic features as the (DP) borderline behavior patterns does. All personality disordered personalities can only be diagnosed by a licensed medical professional.
When I am conducting a profile I am determining if the personality has a healthy ego or narcissist style which is positive. Are the traits and behavior patterns that I would detect, identify, analyze and evaluate is someone who is projecting good confidence and self esteem, but it is a smoke screen for low self esteem/insecurity.
In today's article I am talking about the Dysfunctional Personalities (DP) that have behavior patterns of both a borderline and a narcissist and the harm and chaos they cause. The mental mind games and gas lighting tactics they use to keep you off balance. These (DF) personalities are the mask in the movie The Wizard of Oz. They will stop at nothing to keep you from walking behind the curtain, there is the true personality. A frightened little boy / girl, insecure, and very afraid with very intense abandonment fears.
There is a marked difference in my experience how a borderline and a narcissist deals with their abandonment fears. Let's separate the two behavior patterns and how each deals with and reacts to their abandonment fears.
Both borderlines and narcissists have abandonment fears. They use different tactics and primitive defense mechanisms to deal with this intense fear. Both (DF) will go through the seduction phase. The borderline wants you and believes he/she loves you. Everything will be fine, the sex is great, he/she is happy, their emotions are very intense. They have found the man or woman of their dreams, until they enter the love phase. Then we see the change. Something and there is always something that triggers their abandonment fears, real or imagined.
When their abandonment fears are triggered, usually when things are going smoothly between the both of you, let the games begin. These personalities will constantly test you, push your buttons and watch your reactions. They pacify themselves with your compliance to their wild emotional gymnastics. The problem is when you show strength and set boundaries and not tolerate their game playing emotional nonsense. That triggers their abandonment fears. They can and will go on the attack they will yell, scream, accuse you of cheating on them, accuse you of just about everything and anything under the sun.
This is projection on their part for their own self hatred. With these personalities "they will twist the facts to fit their emotions." With normal functioning personalities "our emotions fit the facts." Their emotions can change at the drop of a hat when they are in a secure, loving relationship. Why? Because this stability is something they have never experienced, to them it does not exist in reality. Ninety Nine percent of the time their abandonment fear are imagined. This happens more times than not when they date up. They feel in their minds you are going to leave them anyway, everyone else they have truly loved has abandoned them, so you will be no different. They will split you. Love you on minute, hate you the next. They will just get up and run. They will hurt you before you hurt them. They will cheat on you before you cheat on them. They will leave you before you leave them.
When borderlines date down, someone who is more insecure than they are. They love the attention and the needy, clinging behavior that this insecure personality can provide them; this makes them feel superior, for the short time. This also alleviates their abandonment fears. Then they become board and restless, they will abuse you, treat you less than human because you are no challenge anymore. With borderlines you must command their respect and draw boundaries with them, if you do not, they will drive you insane with their game playing push pull tactics. They are very self centered and lack true empathy for anyone but themselves.
The narcissist will also go through the same seduction phase, they want you, they will chase you, sweep you off your feet, and you will think they are the most wonderful person you have ever met. You have something they want. Looks, body, sex, prestige, social standing, etc. You make them look good. You provide them with their drug of choice narcissist Supply. The difference is, they deal with their abandonment fears differently than the borderline does. You will never get close to them; they are love avoidant. In their mind "if you do not get close to me, you cannot hurt me." These personalities will always keep you at arms length. You, on the other hand think, Wow! This personality is hard to catch; they are so self confident, they have their act together. This personality is not needy, clingy; he/she appears so self assured. The more you chase them, the more they love it and feel superior about themselves. Both these personalities can be very confident and successful in their function and are very good at what they do professionally. That is their mask, they are very good at what they do, but they do not have that same true self confidence and self esteem in themselves personality. What they project outwardly in their function and what they are personally are two different matters.
These Dysfunctional Personalities cannot validate themselves; they always need outside sources (You), to validate their sense of self worth. I believe in my experience working with these emotional vampires that there are a few people that slip past the false self and get to the true inner child. I have called them the one per centers. These people become the (secondary source) of narcissist supply. They are meaningful to the narcissist. This causes the narcissist great emotional confusion and fear. Now that you are close to me, you can abandon me, you can hurt me. This is a pain they can dish out to others but cannot handle themselves. Most (primary sources) of narcissist supply are nothing more than two dimensional card board cut outs to these (DP). They will use you, abuse you and discard you like yesterdays newspaper. They objectify you and will use you as a masturbation tool. They lack any empathy for the pain they cause.
The secondary source of narcissist supply is their insurance policy. This could be their boyfriend, girlfriend, husband, wife, etc. These people are meaningful to the narcissist. The narcissist will come back to them when their primary sources have dried up. The secondary source gets them back on their emotional feet, tells them how wonderful they are, gives them praise and attention, they are a security blanket etc. Just like a Vampire Bat that cannot go out and feed and stays back in the cave to watch all the pups. Their sisters and brothers (secondary source) comes back and regurgitates blood to keep them alive. The narcissist is the same, without narcissistic supply (blood) they die. When the narcissist loses their (secondary source) it causes great pain. They may act as if they do not care, play the distancing act or silent treatment game, a tactic called ego protection. Believe me they are feeling pain and a lot of it. They have taken a major hit to their ego. You have given them their worst nightmare, rejection and abandonment.
Trait Number Five (5)
Do Dysfunctional Personalities lie, and why? Well the reasons for their deception are completed. I am not talking about the psychopath or what is called the Antisocial Personality. Their deception is strictly for person gain and to avoid getting caught for their crimes. Lying for the psychopath is like playing a game; they love the ability to pull the wool over their victims and Law enforcements eyes. They have no problem with deception because of their complete lack of any guilt or empathy for their targets. Detecting their deception is very difficult. They do not have the tell tale signs (body language tells) that most people will express when burdened with guilty knowledge. More times than not the psychopath will express what is called duping delight a very quick smirk or smile when being interviewed.
What is deception? Lying is a conscious act to deceive the target. Self deceit a form of rationalization or thinking errors is lying to self. Once the personality has convinced self of the Deception and expresses the Deception outwardly it now becomes willful deceit. Both self and willful deceit as well as the compulsive liar are traits that can be detected and Identified in a sample of handwriting. The trait is made subconsciously by the writer they are unaware they are writing this trait or traits. It is produced when the personality is having a problem with the deception. The problem arises when the personality believes in what they are feeling and expressing are true, the traits of deception will not be visible or detected in their handwriting. The profiler must look elsewhere, Statement Analysis (the words they are using in a written or oral statement) Nonverbal Communication (body language). A change in their base line behavior that would flag the profiler to the change of that base line behavior and to ask additional questions. There are different types of lies and liars.
Research has shown that people are no more than fifty percent accurate in detecting deception. One of the main reasons is people have what is called a built in (truthfulness bias). This makes us less likely to believe others are lying to us. One of the other reasons that deception is difficult to detect is that deceptive people will weave lies within a truthful statement.
The most difficult lie to detect is the (lie of omission). What a person is not telling you by leaving out important parts of their statement "lie of omission" can be just as damaging as when he/she is being outright deceptive.
To detect deception with any degree of accuracy we must look for and analyze signs of emotional leakage, discomfort displays that are at variance asynchrony with the picture that is being presented to you. Honest people have synchrony between what is being said and their non verbal body language expressions. Honest people do not have difficulty answering your questions; deceptive people do, because of the stress it causes.
We must also understand the many faces of deception, what deception is, and how it can be used against the more trusting of the people in today's society.
First, what are the stakes involved? We have the following:
1) Low stake lies
2) High stake lies
Low stake lies have no gain or loss for the deceiver. These little white lies or Pro-Social lies have very little consequence attached to them.
The higher the stakes involved, the better your chances will be in detecting deception. Lying causes stress: and this stress will manifest itself in the person's body language expressions, expressed in pacifying discomfort displays. Research has identified four different types of lies. They are:
L.S. 1) Pro- Social:
Lying to protect someone.
To benefit or to help others.
Called the white lie.
H.S. 2) Self Enchantment:
Lying to make ourselves
seem more important to others.
H.S. 3) Selfish:
Lying to protect self. To
conceal a misdeed. Avoid
or disapproval from others.
HS. 4) Anti-social:
Lying to hurt others
intentionally to gain an unfair,
unearned benefit. The psychopath.
We have four types of a deceptive personality:
1) Bad liars
2) Natural liars
3) Practiced liars
4) Psychopathic liars
Bad liars: These personalities are just bad at lying. They are so afraid of getting caught: called detection apprehension that lying is just not rewarding for them. When they do attempt to lie, it is very obvious to everyone.
Natural liars: These personalities were identified by P. Ekman, Ph.D. They did not lie more often nor were less moral or more comfortable when betraying trust. They just know if they chose to lie they could get away with it. They knew this from childhood.
Practiced liars: After years of practice the signs of guilt /anxiety wear off. They have been medicated through what is called "Thinking errors" (self deceit / rationalization). They will not show signs of guilt because they will not feel it. After many years of lying their confidence level is high. They have made themselves believe that whatever they are saying, doing or feeling in their minds to be true. For example, the child molester has made him/her self believe that the child wanted it and likes it. He/she is educating the child, rather than molesting the child.
Psychopath: These personalities are the most dangerous. They do not have the detection apprehension or the fear of getting caught tells/cues that would be detected in most people when being deceptive. The psychopath will deceive without conscience. Deception to the psychopath is considered sport. They deceive for the thrill it gives them. They have replaced "detection apprehension" with "duping delight," a kind of joy and a childlike delight in fooling others. Key characteristics of the psychopath are glibness, superficial charm, and an extraordinary ability to con and manipulate others. (Anna C. Salter, Ph.D. 2003) Deceit models have changed. What was once considered deception indicators such as gaze avoidance and fidgeting have not been found as reliable indicators of deception. Take gaze avoidance for example. Different cultures nave different eye contact levels. Asian cultures hold eye contact 50-60 % of the time, Caucasians 60-70 % and Blacks 70-90 %. People with Autistic disorders or Social Anxiety find direct eye contact very difficult. Research has found that deceptive people have a tendency to hold eye contact longer than what would be considered normal during an interview, conversation or interrogation.
Fidgeting, some people are balls of energy. They fidget and move around constantly. Fidgeting is a sign of stress and not an indicator of deceit.
What is important is to analyze what has caused the change in the person's base line behavior. What question or discussion were you having at the time that caused an increase or decrease in Illustrators (talking with ones hands). We need to ask ourselves, what is causing the stress? Why has this person's base line behavior changed?
A person's emotional make up must also be taken into consideration so we do not make the mistake of falling into what Dr. Ekman, Ph.D calls the Brokaw Hazard or the Othello error.
For example, Introvert, Extrovert and Ambivert personality types handle stressful or threatening situations much differently from one another.
Emotionally controlled personalities, such as the Introvert / Ambivert, are more concerned with how others perceive them.
They have a very analytical thinking process, and can be very poor communicators when put under stressful situations.
They will spend time thinking about the right words to express themselves. The hesitation in their speech and the anxiety shown in their body language may be misinterpreted as deceit.
The Extrovert personality types are very out going, gregarious and fun loving types of people. They have a rapid thinking process and can think quickly on their feet. Their friendly, out going and expressive body language can confuse you, when they are being deceptive.
When we go in to an interview or interrogation with an accusatory attitude, we put the person on the defensive. We, in effect, cause the behaviors in that person that we are trying to detect, identify, analyze and evaluate. We have, in effect, contaminated the experiment.
A base line behavior pattern a norm must be identified. To acquire a true base line behavior, you must keep the person you are dealing with in a state of comfort. Any deviation from that person's normal base line behavior pattern can be analyzed in the context of the situation that you are in.
If you are unsure whether the statement you have been given is truthful or not, wait a few minutes. Then go back and ask him/her to repeat their version of events. Only this time, ask them to repeat the story backwards. Truthful statements come from memory, so this exercise will be easy for them to do. When the story has been created and not being recalled from memory, you will notice hesitations and delays in their speech, called a time buying tactic. They are trying to remember what they have said to you. This put a very heavy load on their cognitive thinking process. At this time you will notice a high level of stress in their body language. This stress will manifest itself in pacifying behaviors. Motions, such as but not limited to; massaging the neck, face and forehead and rubbing the earlobe and mouth, will increase dramatically to relieve the stress.
Do Dysfunctional Personalities lie? Yes, but the reasons for their deception are very complex. This psychological escape trait is their defense for the fear of being rejected, ridiculed, criticized, punished, fear of abandonment, embarrassment, loss of social status, being exposed, etc. The main reason for their deception is because of their insecurity.
They do not lie for personal gain as the psychopath does. In my personal experience working with them and their partners, their deception was more for emotional reasons.
The Dysfunctional Personality has such a fear of abandonment and of being rejected that they lie to avoid this pain. They will lie about themselves, their past relationships, anything that may or will be looked at in an unfavorable light. They do not lie for narcissistic supply like the Narcissist does. The borderline/narcissist (DP) feels that if you know me for who and what I really am, you will not love and accept me. You will abandon me. This is where the statement "they twist the facts to fit their emotions" comes from. For normal functioning personalities "our emotions fit the facts."
For (DP) this is all these personalities have ever known since childhood. Their primary care givers set the mold by their abusive behavior towards them. These personalities were made to feel defective and unlovable. Their deception is their protection against their abandonment fears. These personalities are notorious game players mind games.
They are your Drama Kings and Drama Queens. Their drama is always a story of being the victim, while you are there listening and helping them, you are not paying attention to the real reasons behind their behavior. A tactic used to distract you from their core issues.
Somewhat like a magician who keeps you looking at his right hand and not paying to his left, where the magic is taking place. In their mind they are not doing anything wrong, they believe in their minds what they are saying and doing to be facts. Their deception is more an exaggeration of facts and for emotional self protection. We must also understand that these (DP) have been abused and have been mistreated. As I have stated many times before, "They were not born this way, they were made this way.
The narcissist lies for some of the same reasons as the borderline does but more to keep up the (mask), the false self. They lie to acquire their drug of choice positive (narcissistic supply). They need to be seen as perfect, all knowing, and all powerful personalities. These personalities project outwardly everything they are not in reality. The narcissist will lie about everything and anything to keep you from walking behind the curtain and seeing their real personality. The insecure, weak inner child.
They lie to dominate and control you. Their gas lighting tactics are used to undermine you, so you start to lose confidence in yourself and your abilities. This is for one reason and one reason only, to look and feel superior to you and everyone else they come into contact with. With the narcissist when they are caught in their deceptive ways it will always be your fault. You caused it. These personalities are never at fault for any of their abusive behavior. Expressing guilt and sorrow is not in their vocabulary, when they do, it is also a lie to manipulate back into their world or life.
Deception hurts, regardless of the reasons it is a conscious act to deceive the target. In my experience it is the fingerprint of the insecure personality.
Are the traits of self and willful deceit visible in a person's handwriting? Will identifying these traits give you a red flag that the personality is in a deceptive frame of mind? Yes. But extreme caution must be used here. You cannot look at a persons handwriting detect the traits of self/willful deceit and state the personality is a lying cheat or sneak. There may be many underlying reasons for the deception. Handwriting does not tell you what the personality is being deceptive about. Handwriting is brain writing. It is the frame of mind the person was in at the time the document was penned. To be accurate, fair and professional, we need many samples of handwriting written over a period of time. Secondly, we must determine the circumstances under which the document was penned.
A sample of handwriting penned on your lap in a moving car, bus or train will have distortions due to the vibrations caused by an unstable writing surface. These distortions could contaminate the traits that we must detect, analyze and identify in the handwriting samples, giving the examiner a false read.
The American discipline of Handwriting Analysis is based on trait theory and the psychology behind the one hundred sixteen to one hundred twenty established and researched traits. These traits have been found to be eighty five to eighty seven percent accurate with a thirteen to fifteen percent margin for error. When self and willful deceit have been detected and identified in a person's handwriting, profiler's know the personality is in a deceitful frame of mind. It does not tell us what the person is being deceitful about. Many people rationalize thinking errors a stress /trauma they are enduring in their personal or professional lives. This does not make the personality untrustworthy. The deception detected in their handwriting may be a face saving tactic. To make matters worse if the person has made themselves believe in what they are saying to be true, thinking errors, the traits of self and willful deceit will not manifest itself in the person's handwriting.
When self and willful deceit has been detected in a person's handwriting we must analyze the personality as a whole. Profiler's must detect, identify and analyze all of the traits found in the handwriting Gestalt Analysis to ascertain why this psychological escape trait is there and what is causing the problem. There are many underlying reasons why the personality has entered into a deceitful frame of mind. When self and willful deceit has been detected, it is important to determine how consistent the trait is throughout all of the handwriting samples that have been provided to you.
Pronounced deceit will normally have these additional reinforcing traits:
Persistence, sensuality, self - interest, acquisitiveness, lack of generosity, weak will power, tenacity, resentment, overactive imagination, suppression's, repressions, independence, jealousy, diplomacy, sensitivity to criticism, vanity, domineering, confusion of interest, submissive/yielding and a tendency to underestimate self.
All reinforcing traits must be evaluated on a scale of one through ten. One being the lowest point of measurement. Ten being the highest point of measurement.
It is our responsibility as Profiler's to get to the root of the problem, investigate and understand the reason why this psychological escape trait is there. It is not enough to say that this writer is deceitful. To do so, would be very unfair, unprofessional and unjust.
The Library of Congress has categorized Handwriting Analysis as a subtopic of Psychology, and Psychology as an independent discipline, rather than as a subtopic of social science.
For additional information on deception please check my link on deception detection on this web site.
Trait Number Six (6)
Before I explain a domineering personality. I want to explain the difference between a dominant personality and a domineering personality. Both of these behavior patterns and traits are detected in a sample of handwriting. The trait is detected in the letter "T" and how the downward stroke of the T-Bar is made.
A Dominant Personality:
A dominant personality is a very confident personality who has a natural ability to gain the confidence of others for the purpose of assisting, directing and at times controlling their intentions, will, goals and efforts by their sheer willpower through conscious and or intentional means. Research is very clear on dominancy. A dominant personality is a one in twenty. Five percent of the men and women in today society are Dominant. This trait was passed down from your blood line. Dominant personalities were born that way not made that way. These personalities walk their own road. They are natural born leaders. Dominant personalities have an (Inner need to succeed), their willpower (Strength of Purpose) is of such a nature that they will succeed at any goal, personally or professionally they put their mind to. People are naturally drawn to dominant personalities. Dominancy is considered a positive trait. Dominancy does have a dark side when these personalities goals and desire to succeed have been frustrated or thwarted in some way. If a dominant personality cannot succeed in a social way, they will be more than happy to succeed in an anti-social way to fill their inner need to succeed. One only has to look at the atrocities committed by Adolph Hitler, Stalin, and Chairman Mao, just to name a few, to understand the dark side of dominancy.
A Domineering Personality:
Domineering is negative, these personalities do not believe they can control or lead others by their own volition like a dominant personality can. Domineering behavior is a tactic used by highly insecure personalities and is a behavior pattern used by (DP) in an attempt to control, manipulate intimidate, order and demand submission. Personalities such as this try to gain mastery over the minds and overall well being of those closest to them. They are arrogant, obnoxious, and tyrannical, they will have a tendency to bluff you to get the desired result. Depending on other underlying traits detected, identified, analyzed and evaluated they are quite capable of physical violence to obtain their desired end.
Domineering behavior is a form of gas lighting. Gas lighting is ambient abuse and will be explained in more detail in the behavior patterns section below. Their emotional manipulation tactics will run the gamut from crying/tears whimpering, moaning and groaning, dejection, silent treatment, distancing behavior, refusal to communicate in an adult manner and outright violence until their demands are met. They are also type two control freaks. They will emotionally manipulate you by proxy getting others to put pressure on you. To these personalities there is strength in numbers.
These personalities are brutal with emotional abuse. The domineering (DP) personality is suffering from emotional insecurity and uses this tactic as a form of defense. These (DP) Personalities main objective is to erode and undermine your self confidence and self esteem so they will look and feel better about themselves. These personalities are temporally pacified by your compliance to their demands. Any show of independence and strength on your part only increases their domineering behavior by these personalities. (DP) with extreme jealousy, heavy pressure and with physical abilities, violence will occur sooner than later.
Domineering behavior has many faces: it is all gas lighting to this profiler simply because regardless of the tactics used by the (DP) the end result is the same. To undermine you, manipulate you, control you and dominate you by what ever means possible. This can be accomplished overtly by violence and aggressive behavior or covertly as I have listed below, It all falls under the domineering gas lighting spectrum.
Trait Number Seven (7)
The trait and behavior of anger and rage rated very high in the behavior patterns of the Dysfunctional Personality I profiled. When you add the above mentioned traits with the traits of anger and temper it is not a question are you going to be physically abused? It is a question of when. It is very important for all of you to remember that what a personality projects during the honeymoon/seduction phase of any new relationship and what they may be in reality are two different matters. People will always return to their normal mode of behavior when the honeymoon/seduction phase is over, that return takes time. Do not rush and do not let them rush you into a relationship. You must have the time to see the behavior patterns of this new person in your life under controlled and uncontrolled circumstances. The honeymoon/seduction phase can last from four months to over a year before their true nature will emerge. In the beginning of your new relationship pay very close attention to how quick they are to anger, how do they treat others, who do they associate with, birds of a feather flock together. Does their behavior change after they have had a few drinks. This is very important; a person's true nature will emerge when they have had alcohol or drugs. Do they watch porno films? If so what type of porno films do they enjoy watching. This will also give you a good indication of what he/she may be into on a sexual nature.
Why do Dysfunctional Personalities act and behave the way they do. Their core abandonment issues, their lack of a true sense of self. Not knowing who and what they are, along with the fear of being exposed and the intense emotions they feel that drives their acting out behaviors. The best way for me to explain how these (DP) respond to their intense emotions is this way; their emotions are felt and experienced five times more intensely than the average person. Think of a burn victim whose skin is raw and painful and someone just grabs their arm or body, the pain that is felt is unimaginable. I have stated and will state again these personalities were not born this way, they were made this way. Temper/anger is found in the upper and lower case letter "T". The "T" stroke that comes off the "T" stem and is made to the right of the "T" stem. The further off the "T" stem the formation is made the angrier and volatile the personality is. Lizzie Borden had all of her "T" strokes over an inch away from the "T" stem.
I am often asked by my clients are these Dysfunctional Personalities capable of violence? My answer is yes, they are. All of these Dysfunctional Personalities act out their self loathing in different ways. It is on a bell curve, no two (DP) act the exact same way. The (DP) who is rage addicted, this is their dysfunctional way of self soothing it is their drug of choice. Why? Rage or anger addiction is just the same as a drug addiction. The same chemicals that are released in the brain when taking drugs such as Cocaine or Meth causes increase in the release of dopamine. Dopamine is also released when someone is in a state of rage.
With the five clients I have worked with and warned of the potential for violence and aggressive behavior with their rage addicted (DP) three of the five were seriously physically abused, one was killed. The pictures I have of their battered bodies was heartbreaking. I have explained the traits and behaviors of the (DP) in this article, please read them and become knowledgeable and aware. I will state this again. If you think you will be able to change and fix these personalities you are dreaming, you will not.
Why Anger and Rage is addictive:
There are many similarities in the neurobiology of behavior and drug addictions. One of the most important discoveries of addictions has been the drug based reinforcement and, even more important, reward based learning processes. Several structures of the brain are important in the conditioning process of behavior addiction. One of the major areas of study includes the region, called the amygdale, which involves emotional significance and associated learning. Research shows that dopaminergic projections to the amygdale facilitate a motivational or learned association to a specific behavior. The cycle that is created is considered the dopamine reward system.
Dopamine neurons take a role in the learning and sustaining of many acquired behaviors.
Anger addiction starts in the brain's limbic system, which is the seat of all emotions. This system also causes the secretion of dopamine, the pleasure hormone. Dopamine (where we get the word dope) is the anatomical and chemical stepping-stone to addiction.
Dopamine is a naturally occurring pleasure chemical that is unleashed by your brain in response to or even in anticipation of fun stimulants like a vodka martini, a cigarette, sex, food, even a shopping spree. Since you like the way you feel, you learn to repeat the behavior and your brain participates big time. When the reward center of your brain is stimulated it actively wires itself with mental associations of cause and effect; meaning it remembers what thing or activity produced this pleasurable effect so that next time it can summon all of your mind's creative juices to manipulate your behavior (without you even making a conscious note of it) to achieve a similar gratifying outcome.
The problem with chronic dopamine release is that with time your brain's receptors get desensitized and bring little pleasure. A small amount of dopamine can only help you to feel temporarily 'normal' again. As with drugs, an angerholic will in turn crave a larger release of dopamine to feel the same high and the only way to achieve this is to up the rage and act out more; either verbally or violently. This is how anger addiction is born.
By now you maybe saying to yourself, "OK this is fun, but how in the world can anger feel so good that I can get addicted to it?" It's simple. Remember dopamine, right? Here are three ways how anger can produce pleasure and stimulate the release of dopamine:
1. It is all about the rush - that surge of adrenaline in conjunction with increased heart rate and blood pressure can actually feel quite good, even euphoric. A physical manifestation of anger, like slamming your fist on the table or smashing a porcelain plate against the wall will cause your body to release dopamine, creating an even greater sense of excitement. The trap here is that using rage produced adrenaline to feel 'high' is like drinking tequila to have fewer inhibitions on the dance floor - its short lived and is followed by a nasty hangover.
2. Releasing stored up feelings can feel great. When addicts need their daily fix but can't get it they become antsy and irritable. They feel mental tension and discomfort in various parts of their body. When they finally satisfy their craving they experience a wonderful feeling of relief. Anger addiction is no different. Pent up negative emotions manifest in a very uncomfortable way and their release by screaming or punching something brings about a feeling of relief and satisfaction. The problem is that it's a vicious circle - the more the brain is wired to experience pleasure from disturbing emotions, the more the anger and addiction grow together as friends.
3. Being in control feels good. When something or someone robs you of control it feels bad. Somebody offends you, a driver cuts you off, you are denied access to your routine cigarette brake, and you name it. You lose power, get angry and decide to use force to regain power so you do something to insult or hurt another being to re-gain power. This in turn gives one an illusory boost in power and status. Kicking someone's ass (verbally or physically) in vengeance can feel awesome. Of course, this is exactly the type of behavior that sparks conflicts and pours more fuel into the fire as a result. This is why the most famous sage - Gautama Buddha - skillfully describes anger's attributes as a "honeyed tip with a poison root."
Trait Number Eight (8)
Deep Need for Attention
Human beings are social creatures and need social interaction, feedback, and validation of their worth. The emotionally mature person doesn't need to go hunting for these; they gain it naturally from their daily life, especially from their work and from stable relationships. Daniel Goldman calls emotional maturity emotional intelligence, or (EQ;) he believes that EQ is a much better indicator of a person's character and value than intelligence quotient, or IQ.
The emotionally immature person, however, has low levels of self-esteem and self-confidence and consequently feels insecure; to counter these feelings of insecurity they will spend a large proportion of their lives creating situations in which they become the center of attention. It may be that the need for attention is inversely proportional to emotional maturity, therefore anyone indulging in attention-seeking behaviors is telling you how emotionally immature they are.
Attention-seeking behavior is surprisingly common. The deep need for attention alleviates feelings of insecurity and inadequacy but the relief is temporary as the underlying problem remains unaddressed: low self-confidence and low self-esteem, and consequent low levels of self-worth and self-love.
Deep need for attention becomes a dysfunction as it does with (DP) when that deep need for attention becomes a tactic used to control, manipulate and dominate people. When deep need for attention is detected, analyzed, identified and evaluated in a sample of handwriting, it is found in the ending stroke of any letter formation that swings upward past the half way point of the mundane letters. This tactic is used more by the histrionic and narcissist more than it is used by the borderline or borderline / narcissist in my experience working and understanding them. It is a tactic used both by Males and Females.
These personalities rate high in the following traits they are and not limited to the following;
Jealousy/insecurity they and are extremely sensitive to any form of rejection, ridicule, criticism, real or imagined. Have over active imaginations, self and willful deceit, domineering, moody, ego / vanity, low confidence / goals. They are your Drama Kings and Drama Queens. Their behavior patterns are on a bell curve from being emotionally draining, demanding to criminal behavior.
Histrionics are more coquettish a definition of coquettish is; a man or woman who makes teasing sexual or romantic overtures: a flirt.
Narcissists deep need for attention is used to secure narcissists supply by cerebral or somatic means.
The following list is some of the behavior patterns used by (DP) to gain attention:
Attention seekers commonly exploit the suffering of others to gain attention for themselves. Or they may exploit their own suffering, or alleged suffering. In extreme forms, such as in Munchausen's Syndrome by Proxy, the attention-seeker will deliberately cause suffering to others as a means of gaining attention.
The sufferer: this might include feigning or exaggerating illness, playing on an injury, or perhaps causing or inviting injury, in extreme cases going as far as losing a limb. Severe cases may meet the diagnostic criteria for Munchausen Syndrome (also know as Factitious Disorder). The illness or injury becomes a vehicle for gaining sympathy and thus attention. The attention-seeker excels in manipulating people through their emotions, especially that of guilt. It's very difficult not to feel sorry for someone who relates a plausible tale of suffering in a sob story or poor me drama.
The savior: in attention-seeking personality disorders like Munchausen Syndrome By Proxy (MSBP), also known as (Factitious Disorder By Proxy) the person, usually female, creates opportunities to be center of attention by intentionally causing harm to others and then being their savior, by saving their life, and by being such a caring, compassionate person. Few people realize the injury was deliberate. The MSBP mother or nurse may kill several babies before suspicions are aroused. When not in savior mode, the savior may be resentful, perhaps even contemptuous, of the person or persons she is saving.
The rescuer: particularly common in family situations, she's the one who will dash in and rescue people whenever the moment is opportune - to her, that is. She then gains gratification from basking in the glory of her humanitarian actions. She will prey on any person suffering misfortune, infirmity, illness, injury, or anyone who has vulnerability. The act of rescue and thus the opportunities for gaining attention can be enhanced if others are excluded from the act of rescue; this helps create a dependency relationship between the rescuer and rescued which can be exploited for further acts of rescue (and attention) later. When not in rescue mode, the rescuer may be resentful, perhaps even contemptuous, of the person she is rescuing.
The organizer: she may present herself as the one in charge, the one organizing everything, the one who is reliable and dependable, and the one people can always turn to. However, the objective is not to help people (this is only a means to an end) but to always be the center of attention.
The manipulator: she may exploit family relationships, manipulating others with guilt and distorting perceptions; although she may not harm people physically, she causes everyone to suffer emotional injury. Vulnerable family members are favorite targets. A common attention-seeking ploy is to claim she is being persecuted, victimized, excluded, isolated or ignored by another family member or group, perhaps insisting she is the target of a campaign of exclusion or harassment.
The mind-poisoner: adept at poisoning peoples' minds by manipulating their perceptions of others, especially against the current target.
The drama queen: every incident or opportunity, no matter how insignificant, is exploited, exaggerated and if necessary distorted to become an event of dramatic proportions. Everything is elevated to crisis proportions. Histrionics may be present where the person feels she is not the center of attention but should be. Inappropriate flirtatious behavior may also be present.
The busy bee: this individual is the busiest person in the world if her constant retelling of her life is to be believed. Everyday events which are regarded as normal by normal people take on epic proportions as everyone is invited to simultaneously admire and commiserate with this oh-so-busy person who never has a moment to herself, never has time to sit down, etc. She's never too busy, though, to tell you how busy she is.
The feigner: when called to account and outwitted, the person instinctively uses the denial - counterattack - feigning victim hood strategy to manipulate everyone present, especially bystanders and those in authority. The most effective method of feigning victim hood is to burst into tears, for most people's instinct is to feel sorry for them, to put their arm round them or offer them a tissue. There's little more plausible than real tears, although as actresses know, it's possible to turn these on at will. Feigners are adept at using crocodile tears. From years of practice, attention-seekers often give an Oscar-winning performance in this respect. Feigning victim hood is a favorite tactic of bullies and harassers to evade accountability and sanction. When accused of bullying and harassment, the person immediately turns on the water works and claims they are the one being bullied or harassed - even though there's been no prior mention of being bullied or harassed. It's the fact that this claim appears only after and in response to having been called to account that is revealing. Mature adults do not burst into tears when held accountable for their actions.
The false confessor: this person confesses to crimes they haven't committed in order to gain attention from the police and the media. In some cases people have confessed to being serial killers, even though they cannot provide any substantive evidence of their crimes. Often they will confess to crimes which have just been reported in the media. Some individuals are known to the police as serial confessors. The false confessor is different from a person who makes a false confession and admits to a crime of which they are accused because of emotional pressure and inappropriate interrogation tactics.
The abused: a person claims they are the victim of abuse, sexual abuse, rape etc. as a way of gaining attention for themselves. Crimes like abuse and rape are difficult to prove at the best of times and their incidence is so common that it is easy to make a plausible claim as a way of gaining attention.
The online victim: this person uses Internet chat rooms and forums to allege that they've been the victim of rape, violence, harassment, abuse etc. The alleged crime is never reported to the authorities, for obvious reasons. The facelessness and anonymity of the Internet suits this type of attention seeker.
The victim: she may intentionally create acts of harassment against herself, egg send herself hate mail or damage her own possessions in an attempt to incriminate a fellow employee, a family member, neighbor, etc. Scheming, cunning, devious, deceptive and manipulative, she will identify her harasser and produce circumstantial evidence in support of her claim. She will revel in the attention she gains and use her glib charm to plausibly dismiss any suggestion that she herself may be responsible. However, a background check may reveal that this is not the first time she has had this happen to her.
I have added these following behavior patterns to the above list; they fall under the umbrella of a (DP) deep need for attention. They are and not limited to:
Super Hero: someone who will cause a serious situation such as start a fire and be the one who runs in and rescues everyone.
Hybristophilia: is a paraphilia of the predatory type in which sexual arousal, facilitation, and attainment of orgasm are responsive to and contingent upon being with a partner known to have committed an outrage, or crime, such as rape, murder, or armed robbery." The term is derived from the Greek word hubrizein, meaning (to commit an outrage against someone) In popular culture, this phenomenon is also known as (Bonnie and Clyde Syndrome).
Commitment phobic personalities who know they will never have a real relationship with the criminal they have fallen in love with.
Some believe they can change a man as cruel and powerful as a serial killer.
Others see the little boy that the killer once was and seek to nurture him.
Then there's the notion of the perfect boyfriend. She knows where he is at all times and she knows he's thinking about her. While she can claim that someone loves her, she does not have to endure the day-to-day issues involved in most relationships. There's no laundry to do, no cooking for him, and no accountability to him. She can keep the fantasy charged up for a long time.
I wanted to expand on this behavior pattern. This is my own personal and humble opinion based on my experience working with Dysfunctional Personalities and their partners. Engulfment Fears is a very misunderstood behavior pattern. Many people think that engulfment is (you) the normal functioning personality is engulfing the dysfunctional or highly insecure personality by being needy, clingy, wanting all of their attention and by smothering the him/her. No that is not the case. They want and love that behavior from you. It pacifies and reassures them, during their seduction phase. Their Engulfment Fears kick in when they are engulfed by their deep emotions for you. They think about you more and more, they can't focus at work, they want to know what you are doing, who you are with, why haven't I heard from you, etc. They start to worry that they feel more for you, than you feel for them. This is where their imagination becomes their reality, this is when they will "twist the facts to fit their emotions." To the normal functioning personality "our emotions fit the facts."
This is when you will start to see the testing begin. They become very demanding, wanting you to jump to their every whim and want. The problem is they will keep raising the bar, raising the bar, time and time again. They need constant reassurance because of their deep insecurity. This behavior may work with another insecure personality type, but will not a confident one. The first time you don't jump over that demanding bar, and you start to draw a boundary line, that is proof positive to the Dysfunctional Personality that you don't love them enough, want them enough. That triggers their abandonment fears. In their mind this is a prelude of things to come. That you will abandon them and walk away. They cut off their finger to save their hand so to speak. They split you from the once man or women of their dreams to dirt under their feet. This is a form of ego protection for them. I, the Dysfunctional Personality walked away from you. You didn't walk away from me. I will abandoned you first, before you will abandon me. A behavior pattern called splitting.
Why do Dysfunctional Personalities split? This question is asked more than any other behavior pattern when I am dealing with the partner of a (DP). This splitting behavior is also on a bell curve from mild to extreme. This splitting behavior drops the none or partner on their head. They do not understand how and why this has happened. This splitting behavior can cycle very rapidly from minute to minute or from day to day. It is part of the push/pull cycle. I love you, go away. I hate you, come back. The non or partner thinks it was them that caused the split, something they did or said. This is not the case. It is a very confusing behavior pattern; you are loved one minute and hated the next.
This behavior pattern is something the non or partner just cannot wrap their head around. They end up feeling guilt and pain for something they did not cause.
This defense originates directly from the original core wound of abandonment. When the borderline is stressed, regressed, and/or triggered by attempts to relate as an adult or attempts to remain close or attempts to tolerate the moving in and out between intimacy/closeness and distance he or she will then be re-experiencing his or her past in the non borderline partner in the here and now. That's why so much of what the borderline does is for the non borderline so situationally-inappropriate, age-inappropriate and seems to come at you from left field in a way that you can't really make sense of. It doesn't make sense in the here and now, that's why.
Being triggered by here and now dysregulated emotion back to the edge of the abyss that is the borderline's unresolved abandonment trauma more often than not also puts the borderline in touch with so many unresolved and feared feelings that what is aroused most is the borderline's Rage Addiction.
Borderlines in this dissocialize re-play of their unresolved abandonment trauma treat you as if you are the person with whom they experienced the abandonment, the trauma, the ruptured relationship, failed bonding or attachment with that led to their original loss of self.
This means that for the non borderline relating to a regressed borderline in the here and now, you don't even really exist. You are but a mere extension of the borderline's toxic fusion with someone from wherein there was a very painful and real rupture of attachment. This rupture of attachment is played out with you, the non borderline, in the here and now, over and over and it forms the all-bad of half of the split.
When the borderline isn't stressed or has just played out the all-bad cycle and so for a time is relieved of stress and somewhat calmer (no matter how brief that time may be) he or she then flips back to the feelings associated with the person with whom they experienced the abandonment trauma, the person that they needed and looked up to as a young child. So, you then become the person they need, cling to, want, can't get enough of and the person who is fabulous just as suddenly as you were and will again be the exact opposite.
It is important, I believe for non borderlines who, luckily, don't have this experience (or the experience of the borderline in your life) of feeling and living this - it is very painful - to realize that you will never make sense out of splitting. It doesn't make rational or logical healthy sense. It makes sense only in its toxic dysfunctional protection of the borderline from his or her original core wound of abandonment trauma.
Non borderlines need to detach from this borderline cycle experience. It isn't easy. It is often what ends relationships. Whether you detach from the chaos and drama of it or not please know that trying to hang in there to rescue the borderline in your life can't and won't work.
In my opinion, nons need to hold borderlines responsible for their behavior, even when the borderline may well not (get it). Borderlines need to continue to work at learning how to take personal responsibility for their thoughts, feelings, and actions.
What nons will benefit most from doing is refusing to allow the borderline to treat them abusively as the pendulum of their borderline reality swings back and forth from one side of the split to the other. Sometimes, the (all-good) side of the split can be as abusive, by the way, as the (all-bad) rage etc is. It is often on the "all-good" side of borderline spitting that you will experience the covert manipulation of the borderline's learned helplessness and neediness. You can be their hero don't you know if you are just there to do and do for them. Then in that process of doing for them because you are everything to them in the all-good part of the split, inevitably something will stress or trigger the borderline back to the all-bad part of the split often with lightening speed - and around and around it goes.
By the way, what usually triggers the all-bad split from the stance of the all-good split often is the very thing that you as a non borderline long so much for with this borderline in your life - closeness or intimacy. Sadly, the second it is achieved (after all you go through to get back there) the borderline cannot tolerate it and the cycle of splitting begins all over again.
I see evidenced in the continuous cycle of the borderline maladaptive defense mechanism of splitting, the utter no-win futility and toxic nature of the "borderline relational style" which as its roots such terror and trauma that it can't help but perpetuate from the borderline abuse - namely punishing vindictiveness and a very primal rage. Rage that has itself become an addiction - a rage addiction that is deeply tied into The Shame of Abandonment in BPD and that will present itself in patterned and cyclical ways in and through relationships and efforts to relate generally.
It is very important for the partners of these personalities to understand that their acting out behaviors the split from seeing you as all good and wonderful, the good side of the split. To yelling and treating you in very abusive emotionally or physical ways, the bad side of the split.
This has nothing to do with you, let me repeat this. This acting out behavior has nothing to do with you. It is very hard for most of my clients to understand this concept. Yes, they are directing their behavior at you, but you are only the dart board or the fill for the primary care giver that caused the problem in their childhood. As children they did not have the ability to lash out at the primary care giver. The emotions that they felt as children are alive and kicking in their long term memory. When these personalities fear of abandonment and engulfment fears are triggered in the here and now, this brings up all of the fears and abandonment trauma from childhood. What you are seeing is the child not the adult reacting to those fears. They are now acting out at their primary care givers. You their partner do not exist. When their fears are triggered you are watching the actions of a four or five year old in an adult body. Many of my clients ask what did I do or say to make them hate me like this. I should have said this or that; I should not have done this or that. This is not the case; it has nothing to do with you. Their fears are triggered when they become emotionally close to you. Being emotionally close makes then feel venerable and triggers their abandonment fears, if I am close to you, you can hurt me. So they need to push you away to feel safe again. Then after they push you away their abandonment fears are triggered again and they pull you back in. People who had care givers who gave their children the love and nurturing in childhood grow up with a sense of self. They were given love and security. For (DF) personalities this was never the case, they were robbed of these basic human needs. This fear and uncertainty was carried into adulthood.
Remember as I have said, these personalities were not born this way, they were made this way. Do these personalities want love, yes they do. The problem is they never trusted love. They live their lives saying this to themselves, if my mother or father never loved me, cared for me and treated me less than human. How can I trust you will not do the exact same thing to me? I am not going to relive that horror again.
The real problem is they do without them knowing it, in every new relationship they get involved in.
A.J. Mahari June 26, 2008
Shari Schreiber, M.A.
Projection is a theory in psychology in which humans defend themselves against their own unconscious impulses or qualities (both positive and negative) by denying their existence in themselves while attributing them to others. For example, a person who is habitually intolerant may constantly accuse other people of being intolerant. It incorporates blame shifting.
A person who is accusing you of cheating, being jealous, insecure, and a whole host of other dysfunctional behavior patterns is feeling or doing exactly what he/she is accusing you of doing. This tactic works to keep you off balance and from exposing the Dysfunctional Personality for their bad behavior towards you. While you are defending yourself against these unfounded accusations you are not paying to their bad behavior. When a person attacks or accuses you of something you are not doing it says more about them and what they are thinking or doing than it says about you.
Projective Identification is similar to projection but with a twist. The Dysfunctional Personality acts in such a way to trigger you into acting in the exact way they are accusing you of. Example: The Dysfunctional Personality states "you are a very jealous, insecure person." So he/she flirts and shows attention to someone else in your presents in a very covert manner, just enough for you to see what they are doing. You question them on their behavior, he/she turns around and states "see I told you, you are a jealous insecure person." They use this tactic to validate their projection on to you by triggering you to act in the exact same way they are accusing you of being, insecure, jealous, temper prone, etc. The Dysfunctional Personality is very good at sticking an emotional pin in your rear end. No one ever sees them sticking you with the pin, they just see you responding to the emotional pin prick.
Ambient Abuse is called gas lighting is a stealthy covert way of emotional abuse and maltreatment. Ambient Abuse is the most dangerous type of abuse. It is very covert and often goes unnoticed by the victim themselves. It is a fostering of fear and uncertainty. There are no outwardly visible acts or signs of abuse. Gas lighting is used to erode the victim's sense of self worth and self esteem. Many times when gas lighting is used, the victim is seen as the abuser with emotional instability issues. The Abuser is seen as the poor suffering soul and victim.
The practice of brainwashing or convincing a mentally healthy individual that they are going insane or that their understanding of reality is mistaken or false. The term Gas lighting is based on the 1944 MGM movie Gas light.
In the classic suspense thriller, Gas light, Paula (Ingrid Bergman) marries the villainous Gregory Anton (Charles Boyer), not realizing that he is the one who murdered her aunt and is now searching for her missing jewels.
To cover up his treachery, he tries to persuade Paula that she is going mad, so he can search the attic for the jewels without her interference. He plants missing objects on her person in order to make her believe that she has no recollection of reality. He tries to isolate her, not allowing her to have visitors or to leave the house.
If this sounds somehow familiar, you have probably encountered a form of psychological abuse we call Gas lighting. Essentially, it describes forms of manipulation which are designed to make the victim lose their grip on the truth or doubt their perception of reality.
There are five categories of Ambient Abuse or Gas lighting. Postulated by; Dr.Sam Vaknin
1) Inducing Disorientation
2) Shared Psychosis
3) Misuse of Information
4) To Incapacitate
5) Control by Proxy
A family member who steals something from you tries to convince you that it belongs to them.
A person acts threateningly and then accuses you of abuse when you react in self-defense.
A spouse tries to persuade you that you said or did something that you know is inaccurate.
How it Feels
Gas lighting can be a terrifying experience. It can quickly put you on the defensive - trying to justify your own actions or behaviors - when you started out by challenging someone else's questionable behavior.
A gas lighting perpetrator's fabrications may be presented so convincingly and with such conviction you begin to question yourself and your own memories and judgment. You may begin to fear that other people - who don't know the truth - might be persuaded believe some of the distortions.
Covert emotional manipulation tactics are underhanded methods of control. Emotional manipulation methodically wears down your sense of self-worth, self-confidence, self-concept and trust in your own perceptions. At its worse, you can lose all sense of self and your personal values.
These are some of the manipulation tactics used by (DP) borderlines, borderlines/narcissists, narcissists and psychopaths. Always remember that with every tactic that they may use it is on a bell curve, some more severe than others, some used and some not used. Not all personalities act the same, at their core the reasons for this behavior is the same to control, dominate and to manipulate others for their own personal gain.
- Positive Reinforcement: Praise, flattery, adoration, attention, affection, gifts, superficial sympathy (crocodile tears), superficial charm, recognition, appreciation, intense sex, and declarations of once-in-a-lifetime love. When all of these are present continually at the beginning of the relationship with no negative behavior in sight, it's called "love-bombing," and it's designed to hook us deeply and to bond us tightly to our abuser.
- Intermittent positive reinforcement: This is a very effective manipulation tactic, one abusers use to great effect. Intermittent positive reinforcement occurs when your relationship goes from nonstop positive reinforcement to only getting attention, appreciation, praise, adoration, declarations of love, etc. once in a while, on a random basis. This will create a climate of doubt, fear and anxiety. You'll know he's withdrawing and you'll fear you're losing him, but he'll deny it. This replays over and over until you're riding and emotional roller coaster and are a psychological basket case. He is doing this on purpose to increase his power and control over you and to make you even more desperate for his love. You have become the proverbial lab rat frantically pushing the lever for a randomly dispensed treat. The rat thinks of nothing else, and neither will you. The bond can become even stronger during this phase, believe it or not. It's a well-known psychological phenomenon known as traumatic bonding.
- Negative reinforcement: The manipulator stops performing a negative behavior (such as giving you the silent treatment) when you comply with him.
● Not allowing negative emotion: The victim is typically chastised for emotional behavior. The focus is put on the emotional upset itself, not the cause behind it (which conveniently takes the focus off of him). He refuses to hear what it is she wants to talk about. The only subject is her emotion, which is unacceptable; in fact, it's an issue she needs to work on, and one he finds unattractive. The silent treatment usually follows, which increases her frustration at not being able to express her thoughts and feelings.
- Indirect aggressive abuse: Name-calling is direct and obvious. A manipulative way to make it much less obvious is to drop the angry tone of voice that usually accompanies it, and disguise it as teaching, helping, giving advice, or offering solutions. It appears to be a sincere attempt to help, but it's actually an attempt to belittle, control and demean you, and you will sense this.
- Manipulators share intimate information about themselves, their lives and families early on to create a false sense of intimacy. You'll automatically feel obliged or free to respond, and afterward you'll trust him more and feel closer to him. Later, you'll find out most of what he disclosed wasn't true, and that he'll use everything you told him about yourself to manipulate you or hurt you.
- Triangulation: This is a common and effective tactic of a psychopath's covert emotional manipulation. The manipulator introduces other women into the relationship in any way he can - by talking about a woman at work, talking about his ex girlfriends, flirting with other women in front of you - to knock you off balance and make you jealous. In a normal relationship, a man will go out of his way to prove he's trustworthy. The manipulator does just the opposite, and he enjoys watching your pain and angst. He is usually grooming his next target, and he conveniently uses her to manipulate you devalue you.
- Blaming the victim: This tactic is a powerful means of putting the victim on the defense while simultaneously masking the aggressive intent of the abuser. This usually happens when she questions him about something he wants to hide (such as his involvement with another woman). The victim finds herself put in the defensive mode, and she can't win. He tells her that her concerns are rooted in her problem with "insecurity" and have nothing to do with his behavior or with reality, and that he finds her insecurity very unattractive. Since this is very unpleasant she learns not to question him, and silently puts up with his bad behavior in the future.
- The manipulator will make carefully chosen insinuating comments to evoke an uncomfortable emotional response or even several responses at once. He knows your weaknesses and your hot-buttons, and he will enjoy dropping a bomb like this and watching the fallout. If someone says something that has multiple negative meanings and causes negative emotions while leaving you flummoxed and without a meaningful response, you've experienced it.
- Denying/ Invalidating reality: Invalidating distorts or undermines the victim's perceptions of their world. Invalidating occurs when the abuser refuses or will not acknowledge reality. For example, if the victim confronts the abuser about an incident of name calling, the abuser may insist, "I never said that," "I don't know what you're talking about."
- Minimizing: The manipulator will tell you you're making a big deal out of nothing or that you're exaggerating when you confront him with something he's done.
- Withholding: Includes refusing to communicate, refusing to listen, and using emotionally withdrawal as punishment. This is commonly called the "silent treatment."
- Lies of omission: A more subtle form of lying where a truth is left out if it's not convenient.
- Gas lighting: An especially frustrating manipulation tactic where you know you heard him say something or saw him do something but when you confront him, he simply denies it. It seems obvious enough but if it's repeated often; victims can begin to question their "version" of reality.
- Projecting the Blame: Nothing is ever a psychopath's fault, and he will always find some crafty way to find a scapegoat.
- Diversion and Evasion: When you ask the psychopath a question, instead of answering it he may use diversion (steering the conversation to another topic) or evasion (giving an irrelevant, vague and rambling response).
- Selective forgetting: The manipulator pretends he forgot something important he once said. If you feel the need to use a tape recorder when speaking with someone, covert emotional manipulation is at play. Refusing to take responsibility for his/her behavior, for the relationship or for your reactions to it.
- Attempts to turn the tables and make you look like the abuser: These skilled manipulators have an arsenal of tactics at their disposal, and they will be pushing as many buttons as possible to get you to lose control. They can inflict so much psychological warfare and make you suppress so much emotion that you can be backed into an emotional corner. When this happens, the intense frustration you feel but can't express through normal communication will cause you to react in self-defense. Emotional reactions in self-defense to an abusive situation do not make you an abuser.
- Diminishing and belittling your opinions and ideas non verbally: by using eye-rolls, scoffs, half-smiles, etc. There are plenty of variations.
Push / Pull Cycle
The push / pull cycle is very confusing to people who are in relationships with insecure Dysfunctional Personalities. The confusion in these relationships many times is the personality projects good confidence and a healthy measure of self esteem during the honeymoon / seduction phase of the relationship. As the relationship matures there is a shift in the personality's behavior patterns. When intense intimacy and a loving bond starts to take place their (DP) partner starts to change and sabotage the relationship. Push/ pull is a chronic pattern of sabotaging and re-establishing closeness in the relationship without a cause or reason. It is a back and forth feeling of the partner wanting to be close to someone, becoming more intimate and vulnerable. Then they become very afraid of that vulnerability, they need to escape for fear of being hurt, fearing the possible loss and acting on that fear real or imagined. They push you away, become distant, cold, moody, pick and become angry over what seem to be small issues. Then they change up and pull you in close again because of their fear of abandonment. The partner will change and desperately try to get that person emotionally back again.
The issue is two fold, these personalities want to be intimately close to someone and fear being hurt and abandoned by their partner at the same time.
The closer these personalities become to their partner the more vulnerable they become to the possibility that now you are in a position to hurt them.
They feel you are in a position of emotional power over them. These personalities try to keep you at a safe emotional distance from them; this is their safety zone an emotional buffer. These personalities want to be close and be loved but also want to be safe as well. The closer they become the more they feel you can and will hurt them. So when they become to emotionally close they start to push you away. A form of emotional self protection.
The real issue when this happens is not that they hate you or all of a sudden and do not want you anymore; it is really the opposite of what they are projecting and feeling emotionally inside. They want true love but do not trust it and believe it does not exist because of their early childhood traumas and abandonment issues. Many times when they feel emotionally close they will start testing you, they need to be reassured that you are not going to hurt or abandon them. They will say the most hurtful things to you, pick fights over small issues, the longer you stay and try to work these issues out, the more this testing continues. Their test is a simple one, the more you tolerate their erratic abusive behavior and stay in the relationship the more they believe you love them and are not going to deceive, hurt or abandon them. This testing behavior and your willingness to stay and try to fix the issues will pacify their abandonment fears, but only temporarily.
The more emotionally close they become, the more emotionally invested they are the more frightening the possibility of the relationship ending. Becoming emotionally close to you triggers their abandonment fears they push you away. When you start to distance yourself become angry or frustrated with their behavior this triggers their abandonment fears again and they pull you back in. This push/pull behavior ends up full filling their own prophecy that they will be abandoned and hurt, the very same emotional pain they were so desperately trying to avoid.
Passive Aggressive Behavior
Passive Aggressive Behavior is measured on a bell curve. As with any gas lighting tactic used by the Dysfunctional Personalities as I call them, or the borderline/narcissist defined by the medical community. No two dysfunctional personalities think, feel or respond in the same way. Passive aggressive personality behavior is also listed in DSM 4TR as a personality disorder. This article is not meant to diagnose the disorder. It is meant to help you detect and understand these behavior patterns when you experience ambient abuse in both your personal and professional relationships.
Passive aggressive behavior is a form of covert abuse. When someone hits you or yells at you, you know that you've been abused. It is obvious and easily identified. Covert abuse is subtle and veiled or disguised by actions that appear to be normal, at times loving and caring. The passive aggressive person is a master at covert abuse.
Passive aggressive behavior stems from an inability to express anger in a healthy way. A person's feelings may be so repressed that they don't even realize they are angry or feeling resentment. A passive aggressive can drive people around him/her crazy and seem sincerely dismayed when confronted with their behavior. Due to their own lack of insight into their feelings the passive aggressive often feels that others misunderstand them or, are holding them to unreasonable standards if they are confronted about their behavior.
Common Passive Aggressive Behaviors:
- Ambiguity: I think of the proverb, "actions speak louder than words" when it comes to the passive aggressive and how ambiguous they can be. They rarely mean what they say or say what they mean. The best judge of how a passive aggressive feels about an issue is how they act. Normally they don't act until after they've caused some kind of stress by their ambiguous way of communicating.
- Forgetfulness: The passive aggressive avoids responsibility by "forgetting." How convenient is that? There is no easier way to punish someone than forgetting that lunch date or your birthday or, better yet, an anniversary.
- Blaming: They are never responsible for their actions. If you aren't to blame then it is something that happened at work, the traffic on the way home or the slow clerk at the convenience store. The passive aggressive has no faults, it is everyone around him/her who has faults and they must be punished for those faults.
- Lack of Anger: He/she may never express anger. There are some who are happy with whatever you want. On the outside anyway! The passive aggressive may have been taught, as a child, that anger is unacceptable. Hence they go through life stuffing their anger, being accommodating and then sticking it to you in an under-handed way.
- Fear of Dependency: From Scott Wetlzer, author of Living with the Passive Aggressive Man. "Unsure of his autonomy and afraid of being alone, he fights his dependency needs, usually by trying to control you. He wants you to think he doesn't depend on you, but he binds himself closer than he cares to admit. Relationships can become battle grounds, where he can only claim victory if he denies his need for your support."
- Fear of Intimacy: The passive aggressive often can't trust. Because of this, they guard themselves against becoming intimately attached to someone. A passive aggressive will have sex with you but they rarely make love to you. If they feel themselves becoming attached, they may punish you by withholding sex.
- Obstructionism: Do you want something from your passive aggressive spouse? If so, get ready to wait for it or maybe even never get it. It is important to him/her that you don't get your way. He/she will act as if giving you what you want is important to them but, rarely will he/she follow through with giving it. It is very confusing to have someone appear to want to give to you but never follow through. You can begin to feel as if you are asking too much which is exactly what he/she wants to you to feel.
- Victimization: The passive aggressive feels they are treated unfairly. If you get upset because he or she is constantly late, they take offense because; in their mind, it was someone else's fault that they were late. He/she is always the innocent victim of your unreasonable expectations, an over-bearing boss or that slow clerk at the convenience store.
- Procrastination: The passive aggressive person believes that deadlines are for everyone but them. They do things on their own time schedule and be damned anyone who expects differently from them.
The Passive Aggressive and You:
The passive aggressive needs to have a relationship with someone who can be the object of his or her hostility. They need someone whose expectations and demands he/she can resist. A passive aggressive is usually attracted to co-dependents, people with low self-esteem and those who find it easy to make excuses for other's bad behaviors.
The biggest frustration in being with a passive aggressive is that they never follow through on agreements and promises. He/she will dodge responsibility for anything in the relationship while at the same time making it look as if he/she is pulling his/her own weight and is a very loving partner. The sad thing is, you can be made to believe that you are loved and adored by a person who is completely unable to form an emotional connection with anyone.
The passive aggressive ignores problems in the relationship, sees things through their own skewed sense of reality and if forced to deal with the problems will completely withdraw from the relationship and you. They will deny evidence of wrong doing, distort what you know to be real to fit their own agenda, minimize or lie so that their version of what is real seems more logical.
Out of the Fog
Emotional Blackmail by; Susan Forward Ph.D.
Emotional blackmail is a powerful form of manipulation in which people close to us threaten to punish us for not doing what they want. Emotional blackmailers know how much we value our relationships with them. They know our vulnerabilities and our deepest secrets. They can be our parents or partners, bosses or coworkers, friends or lovers. No matter how much they care about us, they use this intimate knowledge to win our compliance.
Emotional blackmail is a powerful form of manipulation in which people who are close to us threaten, either directly or indirectly, to punish us to get what they want. Knowing that we want love or approval, blackmailers threaten to withhold it or take it away altogether, or make us feel we must earn it. If you believe the blackmailer, you could fall into a pattern of letting him/her control your decisions and behavior.
Have you ever wondered why someone you had a relationship with or in a relationship now just stops talking to you. Why do they play this emotional manipulation tactic? It is painful, it is troubling and many times than not, you start second guessing yourself. A very effective game played the Dysfunctional Personality.
All of a sudden they won't talk to you, answer your texts, e-mails or your phone calls. If you are living with them he/she will just sit there and make believe you do not exist. They just won't. You feel alienated, cast aside and abandoned. And it doesn't seem like they care at all. Or worse, they seem to how this is affecting you.
This is a scenario that far too many people experience. This emotional abuse called the silent treatment game really hurts and is very confusing.
Victims of emotional abuse silent treatment are male and female, young and old. The perpetrator could be a romantic partner, friend, parent, or child. It could be done in person, online, or in email. Silent treatment has no boundaries and the people who use it as a tactic during conflict know what they are doing.
No, you say, they can't possibly know how deeply their actions are affecting me. While it is normal for victims to make excuses, don't fool yourself into believing that they are oblivious to the impact of their actions. Control is at the base of using the silent treatment as a weapon in a relationship. The people who choose to do it want to control the situation and, by extension, you. Your reaction shows them if it's working. People often make the mistake of thinking that the silent treatment is the same as the cooling off period often used as a way to calm down during a difficult exchange. In this process, the two decide to take a break from the discussion and set a time to regroup. The conversation then resumes. With the silent treatment, there is no mutual agreement on when the subject will be revisited. Only one person controls that, and they don't share their plans with the other person. The cooling off period is a rational method used to diffuse conflict whereas the silent treatment is an exercise in dominance.
We've determined that the silent treatment is intentional, but is it malicious? Does the perpetrator actively want to hurt you? These are relative terms. What should be understood is that the silent treatment, or the cold shoulder, is a form of abuse. Many people don't think of it that way, likening abuse to physical acts exclusively. Emotional abuse silent treatment affects a person differently than physical abuse does, however the mental result for the victims are similar. Feelings of low self-worth, anxiety, and low self-esteem abound in victims of the silent treatment, just like they do in other forms of emotional and physical abuse. Don't discount the emotions you feel or the predicament you are in. They are valid. You are valid.
No matter how mild-mannered the perpetrator or how cleverly the withdrawal of attention is executed, the silent treatment hurts. It is manipulation. Some of the perpetrators do it because they are afraid of the conflict that would ensue if they told the victim what was bothering them. Others do it because they want to make the victim do something. Some remain quiet, replying that nothing is wrong when asked, even though it is evident that something is different. Others become sarcastic and make snide comments, starting arguments about things that are nonsensical, without divulging the nature of the real problem. There are many ways that the silent treatment can begin, but the ways to live with and, more importantly, survive it are the same.
"Don't give them the satisfaction." They want to put the victim on edge. Either subconsciously or consciously, they want to see how they will be placated. Continually asking them what the problem is and beseeching them to speak does nothing more than feed their reserve. This could lead to prolonged or more frequent incidents of the silent treatment.
"Take control back." Turn the tables on things and take control back from the perpetrator. The way to do this is to show them that what they are doing doesn't affect you. Go to dinner or a movie with friends, read a book; do something you like to do without regard to the other person. If the silent treatment is being done in email or online, ignore them. Remove them from your friends list or don't respond to posts. Show them that the sun doesn't rise and set with them. This won't be easy, but you can do it. You will change the dynamic with this behavior; putting them on edge and making them wonder why their antics aren't working. They will chase you instead of the other way around. In that way, the end result that you wanted in the first place - the renewal of their attention and affection - will be achieved.
"Know what you want." See what is going on in this situation and try to project your future with this individual. If this person continues to play a large part in your life, will your future be riddled with pockets of emotional abuse silent treatment? Determine your own path; don't allow someone else to decide for you.
Living with and surviving the silent treatment can be done. It takes focus and resilience, but you can get there.
I am asked by my clients time and time again "Tony what are the red flags I should be aware of when I meet a new person." There are many red flags. If I were to pick one that I would say is my number one red flag, from a profiling standpoint, it would be what is called love bombing. What is love bombing?
Love bombing is an attempt to influence a person by lavish demonstrations of attention and affection. The phrase can be used in different ways. Members of the Unification Church of the United States (who reportedly coined the expression) use or have used it to convey a genuine expression of love, friendship, fellowship, interest, or concern. In a new relationship love bombing is used by all of the Dysfunctional Personalities I have profiled.
This tactic is also used by the psychopath in an attempt to disarm you and get you hooked emotionally to him/her. You have found the man or woman of your dreams, it will not be long before those dreams become a horror movie in which you are the star. Dysfunctional Personalities such as the borderline, borderline/narcissist, narcissist use love bombing as a way to get their validation needs met, to bolster their low self esteem. The psychopath uses it to get their "gratification needs" met. Such as your body, children, money, etc. They could care less about you. The only love they feel for you, is what they can extract from you. Once they have used you, they dump you like yesterdays trash.
All of these personalities use love bombing but for different reasons. The outcome is the same you are hurt, emotionally, financially, physically. Relationships take time, with love bombing the personality wants the relationship to start off very quickly. You are overwhelmed with love, attention. You are idealized and put on a pedestal. After one or two dates this personality knows you, connects with you, you feel like you have know each other for years, your soul mate. Their love and concern for you during the seduction phase has your head spinning.
Beware of phrases in the early stages of a new relationship such as:
I can't believe I've finally found someone like you.
I've never felt so comfortable in someone's company before, it is like I have know you my whole life.
You're the most beautiful woman (or man) I've ever seen. You have the most attractive (eyes, hair, body shape, smile, dimples).
I think I love you. I think I want to marry you. The key word is think.
I never got married before because I haven't found someone like you. We have so much in common.
We are so much alike.
He/she pressures you into becoming intimate in a short amount of time.
Relationships take time, getting to know someone takes time, it does not happen over night. It does not happen after two or three dates. Love at first sight happens only in romance novels. Remember what I have taught you, consistent behavior over an extended period of time. If you should have any questions on profiling, please call or send me an e-mail I will be more than happy to talk with you.
My clients ask me "Tony why am I attracted to the same type of personality over and over again?" This is a very complex question. It is the behavior patterns that your early childhood care givers exhibited (how they treated you) that you are making the emotional connection with in your adult life today with another DP that you have become attracted to. It did not matter who it was per say, your mother, father, grandmother, etc. It was their intermittent or abusive behavior patterns in your early childhood years that you were ill equipped to deal with or understand that set the blueprint for your behavior patterns today in adult life. It is what is called a repetition complex. Many times my clients ask me why I always fall for the same type of male or female who treats me badly. The reason is that you are responding to the same behavior patterns you remember as a child. It is not the adult in you that is responding or attracted to these emotional vampires, it is the child in you that is responding. Remember the sub conscious mind has no conception of time, it does not reason, it does not rationalize.
As a child you did not have the emotional experience/knowledge to understand why you were being abused or mistreated. All you could understand at that young age is that their must be something wrong with me, I am bad, I am unlovable. Why are you beating me, hurting me? It must be because I am bad and worthless. So what does the child do at that young age to get the love and security that the child so desperately wants and needs? The only thing the child can do, chase and continue to try and prove to their caregivers that I am good, I am lovable, I am sorry, I will not do this again, please love me! The real problem is the poor child never knew what the hell they did in the first place to be at the receiving end of all this mistreatment. The child did not have the emotional intelligence/experience or understanding to realize that it was their primary caregivers that were the problem.
So the tape was made (your emotional behavior pattern). The blueprint was set. You meet someone in your adult life, their intermittent and abusive behavior patterns is what attracts you. Not you the rational adult, you the child. So what does the adult/child do? The only thing they can do, the only thing they have ever known. The exact same things you did as a child, chase, chase, try to prove that you are a lovable person so you will not abandoned again. In your mind, if I can have this new person (who represents the same behavior patterns as your primary care givers) love and accept me, all past sins will be forgiven, a repetition complex is developed. This is never the case, "you can learn from history but you cannot rewrite history." It is time to erase the old tape it does not work anymore.
Think about this my friends, if you were not abused as a child and had a somewhat normal life where you were loved and accepted for the wonderful child you were and are. Had the coping skills, where your self esteem was not shattered and beaten down. Where you learned to love, trust and be loved and trusted. Would you as an adult be with people who would abuse and mistreat you, emotionally, physically or sexually. I think not. To change old behavior patterns (the tape) is not easy but it is not impossible. You have the power within you to make the change or erase the old tape. It starts with loving and respecting yourself. To believe in yourself, no one else can validate you. When you look for others to validate you and believe your self worth is contingent on their treatment of you as a person, you will be disappointed, hurt and unhappy.
You must believe, love and respect yourself first. If you do not, do not expect to get it from others.
I have explained to the best of my knowledge, experience, training, skill and education the reason why (DP) act the way they do. I have given you some of the tactics and behavior patterns that these personalities exhibit and use against you. Knowing and understanding these tactics and behavior patterns will help you to become aware early in your relationship/interaction before you have invested too much time and emotional energy with these dysfunctional people.
All I live for,
I received a phone call a few weeks ago from a client who was so emotionally/physically abused from her emotional vampire, that I was very fearful she would never be the same again. She was so beaten down and had lost so much of her confidence and self esteem she did not sound like the same person who called me for a profile on this (DP) over a year ago. She finely got the courage to pack up and walk away. I explained to her what he would do. She did not believe me. She was so beaten down and he knew how to gas light her. These (DP) know the chinks in your armor. I told her no, do not believe anything he says or does. He is in ego protection mode. No, Tony he has already moved on, he is on this dating site, on that dating site. He has a new girlfriend already, I am worthless to him." I said no, all he is doing is looking for a masturbation tool, no more no less. He is in disbelief you had the strength to walk away. He is in a lot of pain. You gave him his worst nightmare, rejection and abandonment. He never believed you would leave the Great Oz, I said to her. He will try to contact you again. No, no I changed my phone, I blocked his e-mail, and he does not know where I live. I said don't worry when he realizes you left for good he will. He will send you a message through face book or some other media outlet. He will find out where you have moved to.
Sure enough he did, she was in disbelief. Working with her and getting her back on her emotional feet through education and knowledge about the true personality he was took time. Getting her back to know and love the true lovely personality she is, and always was, was not easy but was well worth it. Listing to her today laughing and feeling good about herself again is all I live for. She went after a new job she has always wanted but did not have the confidence to give it a try. She did and got the job, with much more money, she has a new place to live that she loves. Men are asking her out left and right.
She said "Tony I feel like a new person." "I said no, you are the same person you have always been," the emotional vampire wanted you to feel otherwise because of his insecurity, extreme jealousy and controlling behavior. I just helped you to get back to being the real you again.
His insecurity wanted to destroy that part of you; he needed to feel superior about himself by destroying in you what he does not have within himself. I said sweetheart, sometimes people take a wrong turn when dating and getting involved with a new love interest. Many people fall for a (DP) that is no fault of their own. You are not gullible or stupid.
Sometimes that road leads them to the dark side of the moon, my job is to get them back out and into the sun light. To hear you like this today, feeling good about yourself again, laughing and happy is all I live for.
Personalities are very complex they are somewhat like our four primary colors, red, yellow, blue and green. The personalities I am profiling may be Extroverts, Controlled Extroverts, Ambiverts or Introverts and the other four personality types in between that I have detected, identified, analyzed and evaluated, but that is where the similarities end. The different traits and Intensity (mental strength) will have these personalities act and behave very differently from one another. The best way to explain this is by looking at our four primary colors, red, yellow, blue, green. Mixing anyone of these four primary colors with one another and you have a new color or in a profiling situation a totally different personality type. The mixing of the colors are the traits that we detect, identify and analyze in the personality. We have one hundred twenty researched traits that interact with one another making each and every one of us totally different and unique personalities.
The American Public is both uninformed and misinformed regarding forensic/therapeutic profiling, many people think we profile people bases on their race, creed, color, gender or national origin or if the personality is gay or straight. Nothing could be further from the truth. There is a marked difference between profiling and bigotry. In forensic profiling the profiler has the "who, where, why and how." We try to prevent the "when." In Criminal Profiling they have the "where, why, how and the when" and try to figure out the "who."
Profilers work to come up with a personality profile based on behavior patterns consistent over a period of time. We attempt to answer the question “what is the best I can hope for, what is the worst I can expect” from this personality when their logic has been reduced and their emotions come into play.
My job as a Profiler is to unmask the personality in question, and uncover the dark side of their behavior if one exists.
This is the primary reason, I warn my clients to be competent observers during the honeymoon phase of any new relationship which can last anywhere from six months to a year. This is the time period where everyone is on their best behavior. If the personality is putting up a false front or a mask you will notice leakage when they are under stress or when they have had a little too much to drink. Woman need to ask questions! Ask about their past relationships, how and why did it end? How did they treat their past girlfriend / wife. How do they treat family members, co workers and friends? A very good indication on his / her character is the people he / she associate with.
When talking with people on the internet or meeting someone on a dating site, remember this saying before you meet or get emotionally involved with someone you really do not know:
This was best quoted by the famous FBI Profiler John Douglas,
“ANYONE YOU WANT ME TO BE.”
When trying to understand and learn about the people in your personal and professional life and why at times they act the way they do. Remember,
Traits are expressed through behavior.
Past behavior is inductive of future behavior.
Behavior reflects personality.
I hope this article I have written has given you a better understanding of what I have called Dysfunctional Personalities and my personal experience talking to them and working with their partners who have suffered and are suffering the abuse, pain and chaos dealing with these abusive personalities. This has been a basic overview of their behavior patterns. These personalities are extremely complex and no two (DP) will act or behave in the same manner. Profiling has been my passion in life and all I have lived for since the first day I started on my journey into the complex world of Understanding Human Behavior seventeen years ago. Remember what I have tried to teach and explain to you in this article, it is not you that is the problem, it is them. "Information is power, nothing like a little sunlight to disinfect."
If you should have any questions on forensic/therapeutic profiling, please call or e-mail me. I will be more than happy to talk with you.
The following books are excellent sources of information and are a must read to help you understand the complex behavior patterns of these personality types:
Dangerous Personalities: by Joe Navarro, M.A. FBI Special Agent (Ret.)
Malignant Self Love - Narcissism Revisited: by Dr Sam Vaknin
Ronald H. Rice, BCFE Forensic Examiner; Therapeutic and Forensic Profiling Course
Dr. Ronal Rosso
Telling Lies; Paul Ekman, Ph.D.
Predators; Anna C. Salter, Ph.D.
Joe Navarro, FBI Special Agent (Ret.) M.A. Nonverbal Communication Training Course
Joe Navarro, FBI Special Agent (Ret.) What Every Body is Saying, Harper-Collins Publishers.
Donald Bender, LMFT Forensic Linguistics Statement Analysis Training Course
Donald bender, LMFT Clinical Statement Analysis Training Course
DSM 4 TR
Dr. Sam Vaknin; Malignant Self Love Narcissism Revisited
Out of the Fog
Shari Schreiber, M.A.; The Male Borderline
Wendy T. Behary, LCSW; Disarming the Narcissist
Daniel J. Siegel, MD; Disarming the Narcissist
Jeffrey Young, Ph.D.; Disarming the Narcissist
Dr. Susan Forward; Obsessive Love
Wikipedia; The Free Encyclopedia
A.J. Mahari June 26, 2008
Cathy Meyer Original Content © 2007-2014
Understanding Human Behavior; Columbia House Volumes 1-24
Special interest Article;
Anthony J. Iantosca, BCFE
Intensity requires intensity. When profilers talk about intensity, I am talking about (mental strength) not (physical strength) as I have explained above. Intensity is an intrinsic trait, each and every one of us was born with an intensity level. Combined with other traits that I have detected, identified, analyzed and evaulated will give me a profile on the personalities sex drive. Many times I receive calls from clients who ask me if they have a problem. Their partner has stated that they are sick and want sex all the time. Or the partner has stated that they are kinky and want to have sex in more colorful ways. I ask three questions, is your sex drive, wants needs and desires causing you stress? Is causing an impairment of social/work functioning? Is it illegal? If their answer is no , then there is nothing wrong with you. Each and everyone of us have wants / needs and desires, what may excite you, may not excite me and what may excite me, may not excite you.
Each and everyone of us have a preference. A form of selectivity. The main problem is the difference in the personalities intensity level (pressure/mental strength) A personality in the P-2,3 pressure range is not going to have the same drive, want, need and desire as a personality in the P-4,5,6 pressure range (intensity level). The more intense the personality is, the more intense/colorful their sexual appetite can and will be. A personality in the P-2,3,3 1/2 pressure range may be able to handle a personality in the P-4 pressure range but cannot relate to the personality in the P-5-6 pressure range. These personalities are intense in every aspect of their lives, they work hard, play hard and are intense sexually. Male or female it does not matter. Many times it is the woman who is a very intense personality, P-4,5,6 pressure range who is married or dating someone who is a lighter pressure the she is.
The male cannot relate to her drive. Many times the male ego comes into play and of course it must be her who has the problem. It is not me, I am normal. You are the crazy one. This is not the case at all. The woman is made to feel bad about herself, she is told she is over sexed, sick and has emotional problems.
To make matters even worse, if the partner who has been made to feel badly or has been made to feel like he/she has a problem seeks out a psychologist to speak with and the psychologist is in the P-2,3,3 1/2 pressure range trying to relate to a personality who is in the P-5,6 pressure range, forget it. That is never going to happen. You will walk out thinking you really have a problem.
Remember intensity requires intensity. Everyone returns back to their normal mode of behavior once the honeymoon phase of a new relationship is over. If you and your partner are not equal in intensity (mental strength) these differences in intensity will manifest themselves at a later time and there will be problems or misunderstandings within the relationship.
So before you start second guessing yourself or have been made to feel badly, call me. I will be able to clear up the confusion and misunderstanding.