Psychopaths, Jerks and Triangulation

If you’ve fallen for a jerk, you may take some solace in the fact that you’re in good company. Even Hollywood stars and music icons, who have their pick among men, tend to go for bad guys. To mention just one of the latest scandals, LeAnn Rimes has left her husband, Dean Cheremet, for Eddie Cibrian, a man whom many describe as a “serial cheater”. This news caused a splash in 2009. It even led the editor of Shape Magazine to offer an apology to her readers for putting Rimes on the cover. Needless to say, LeAnn Rimes is no innocent victim. And yet, given the fact that Eddie Cibrian reportedly already cheated on her with his ex-wife and his ex-mistress, I predict that he’ll be the one to break her heart rather than the other way around.

For now, their blooming love affair appears all rosy. On Halloween last year, Eddie proposed to LeAnn as a prank, but recently they got married for real. The fact that she became obsessed with her looks, lost a lot of weight, and now looks anorexic seems like a very bad sign. However, still in the throes of the honeymoon phase, LeAnn has no time for regret. She states in an interview: “Nothing I’m going to say is going to change it. I do know that, and I have accepted that…but I do know how much I love him. So I’ve always said I don’t live my life with regret. I can’t.”

And yet, many women who leave decent partners for rakish lovers do, indeed, end up living with regret. What’s new gets old. After the initial conquest is over, the Casanova types quickly tire of their relationships and look elsewhere for new sexual thrills. Even giving in to their libertine lifestyle may not be enough. Speaking of  which, it seems like each of Charlie Sheen‘s “Goddesses” were eventually knocked off their pedestals, despite readily participating in his raunchy fantasies.

Psychopaths know how to identify each person’s specific weaknesses and vulnerabilities. If you’re okay with an open sexual relationship and look down upon the “bourgeois” notion of fidelity as too boring and conventional, don’t worry, the psychopath will identify other deliciously cruel ways to betray, hurt and punish you. After all, isn’t that what the libertine tradition is all about? Not just pleasure in itself, but pleasure through someone else’s dupery, misery and pain? Just take a look at Laclos and De Sade.

In fact, it’s worth rereading the eighteenth-century novel about psychopathic seduction after which I named my own book on the subject, Dangerous Liaisons, or at least seeing the excellent movie staring John Malkovich and Glenn Close. In a particularly poignant scene, whose image I’m including below, the psychopathic sex addict, Valmont, is writing love letters to one mistress on the naked back of another: a corruptible young woman he seduced and perverted very young, who relishes the perversion and colludes with him in his libertinage.

Predictably, she ends up destroyed as well. It’s not just sex psychopaths and other jerks want, nor just power. It’s power at the expense of another. For a disordered, control-driven individual, there’s no better way to exert power over others than through triangulation: flaunting new relationships to his ex’s; fostering enmity and jealousy among his various conquests.

Feeling flattered by the overflow of attention, newer targets often participate in these displays of cruelty, much like LeAnn Rimes willingly participated in a pretty disgusting PDA with her new husband Eddie, in front of his ex-wife, Brandi Glanville, according to this recent article in US Weekly Magazine:

As I’ve explained in my earlier post on manipulating women and turning them against each other (, such ostentatious make-out sessions aren’t about affection or love. They’re about using current targets to rile up and hurt former targets. Without causing pain to others, psychopaths and other jerks don’t enjoy their control over women. They use new victims to rub salt on former victims’ wounds, just as they’ll use future victims to try to hurt them in turn.

Their logic is the same as the song How You Like Me Now? by The Heavy, which I used in this art video to showcase the photography of postromanticism, the art movement I started in 2002.

The logic of this song is triangulation: How do you like me now, that you know I cheated and replaced you? The sadist in the song flaunts the new “love” to the former girlfriend and asks her: Does that make you love me Baby? Does that make  you want me Baby? The obvious answer to such stupid questions from anyone who is not disordered is: NO. I like you even less. Or, if you prefer, I dislike you even more!

A psychopath can’t understand that it’s him you reject, so it doesn’t matter what other women (or men) he attracts and what he does with his life, professionally or personally. Nothing and nobody can make a person entirely deprived of human qualities and character look good. Triangulation can only expose further the depth of his depravity.

Even those women who, like LeAnn Rimes, buy the psychopath’s smear campaign about his ex’s and relish being the new partner in his latest triangulation don’t usually enjoy when they’re the target of the psychopath’s newest “love of his life” or “soulmate,” as the process inevitably starts all over again. A psychopathic seducer cannot be happy with anyone, not even with his most ardent defender and worshipper. It doesn’t matter how much she herself loves him; what’s most relevant is that he is constitutionally incapable of real love. Sooner or later, he’ll find ways to humiliate and hurt her as well, as he’s done to every other woman before her.

Believe it or not, you reap what you sow in life. Each target will eventually be stabbed in the back by yet another target, whom the psychopath will use to machinate against her. This pattern, which we see played out over and over again, leads me to ask the inevitable question: Why do so many women go for jerks? Here’s my top five reasons, off the top of my head:

1. Jerks tend to be very romantic at first. Much more so than nice guys. Jerks are impulsive, thrill-seeking and experienced in the art of seduction. They know just what to do and say to sweep women off their feet.

2.  Jerks are smooth liars. They know how to tell women what they want to hear. A nice guy may tell you quite honestly when you don’t look so hot or have gained a couple of pounds. A jerk, however, will usually flatter you as if you’re the best thing since sliced bread (but he’ll cut you down behind your back, to the other women he’s trying to impress).

3. Jerks tend to be hyper-sexual. All too often women equate sexual attraction with love. But remember, attachment doesn’t equal bonding. Just because a man wants to make love to you all the time doesn’t mean that he actually cares about you.  Besides, sexual passion rarely stays intense once the relationship transitions from an affair to marriage.

4. Women flatter and fool themselves. We really want to believe that we’re the exception that confirms the rule. Sure, the man I love may have cheated on his ex-wife and dozens of OTHER women, but he won’t cheat on ME. Why not? Because our relationship is that UNIQUE and because I’m that SPECIAL. Chances are: no, you’re not. What he did to others for you he’ll eventually do to you for others. Mark my words LeAnn Rimes! You’ll see this behavior in a few years (at most!), when he’ll be using someone new to hurt you just as he used you to hurt his former wife.

5. Women enjoy a challenge. Taming a player is kind of like riding a wild horse. It may be dangerous and cause anxiety, but it’s also very exciting. One thing to keep in mind is that, sadly, excitement is fleeting. Dealing with your partner’s constant lying, cheating and rationalizations for his bad behavior gets tedious, predictable and boring real fast. Far more boring, in fact, than interactions with men who have good character and emotional depth.

Because women don’t always have impeccable judgment when it comes to falling in love, it may be true that good guys finish last. But if you choose a jerk over a nice guy (or even over being single), you’ll be the one ending up last. My advice? Choose someone sweet because a relationship with a psychopathic jerk is bound to sour. 

Claudia Moscovici, psychopathyawareness

Dangerous Liaisons: How to Identify and Escape from Psychopathic Seduction



  1. Claudia
    Once again your article nails my experience on all counts. My ex path was EXACTLY this way. I left my husband, a man that did love me, with all my faults and flaws, and I loved him, with all his flaws, for what was and is a lie. Yes I do agree that there must have been something lacking or a weakness with my marriage. However neither of us could have prepared ourselves by what we were hit with, a force majeure, as I like to call it. On top of that I had had strong feelings for my ex path since age 12. However, he played on this, my romantic idealisations, my memories of us and him, my love of sex, my love of a marriage that ticked all boxes. And of course, what happened to me is as you have detailed above. I was not the exception to the rule, I was just another dupe, another game. After only two months of him pressuring me to leave everything behind and move 400 miles away to be with him, he then started the triangulation, the affairs. He went dogging (sex in cars with strangers and infront of strangers), he was having threesomes with his ex from 6 years ago and a f(ckbuddy. He was actually doing this WHILST telling me he loved me and that I was to be with him and marry him. God knows what else he was doing and still does.
    You are spot on with regards to the open mindedness of sex. I can be quite liberal, I admit that fully, however it does not matter one iota how you play your card with these individuals. No matter what you do it will never be enough, as their ultimate goal is to humiliate you, destroy you, make you feel worthless. However high or low your moral boundaries are set they will beat you down. You are damned if you do and damned if you don’t. My weight dropped also, I was told that I was ageing, that I was too skinny, that I didn’t suit the lipstick I wore, that I should wear more dresses, I was devalued almost immediately from moving in with him. It started like a drip feed then the dose was set higher and higher.
    My ex recently informed me he had met someone else, that they had trust and affection, he was in a better relationship for him, not anger, jealousy, insecurity and sex which he had with me. Less than two months later she was cast aside, like me and countless others. The reason: marriage and kids were too much for him and (I quote) his “beautiful yet fragile psyche”. These two words could never be used to describe a psychopath. The damage my ex did to my life, my husband’s life and my family’s lives will be felt like an earth tremor for a long time to come. He continues to this day to have power over me, offering friendship only, threatening that if I do not accept just that then I will never hear from him again. These types do not realise that normal people eventually tire of their threats and childish behaviour and move on in their lives and find others that make them happy. One day I hope to be able to do that. My ex still upsets me slightly, but I find his threats don’t work anymore. He can never be a friend to anyone, unless that is a friend that uses you for sex or money then abuses you when you do not do their bidding.
    Thank god for this site, the bloggers on it, who have helped me and you Claudia, as the site contains the most informative helpful supportive information. The mental, emotional, physical and financial damage that paths cause cannot EVER be underestimated.
    Love you all

  2. Sorry I mean my ex to this day TRIES to exert power over me by telling me he is happy with his new partner, he does not love me, he moved on a long time ago. They move on as they were never there in the first place, never with you for real.


  3. Lesley, your psychopathic ex’s behavior is typical. They only enjoy relationships if they can dupe, manipulate, triangulate. That’s part and parcel of their personality disorder: to enjoy harming others, above anything else. They even fail to understand, in their transparent triangulations, that it doesn’t matter to us what they do with whom. The only thing that matters is who they are. In terms of character and emotional depth–which is what counts most–they’re Losers. Nothing they do professionally, no amount of money they make, and nobody they conquer or manipulate can change that basic fact about their bad character. Claudia

  4. Claudia: ItS plain sad these women in Hollywood feel they must look anorexic for a man!!! Pictures also make you look heavier so imagine how skinny Leanne is in REAL life? I find this to be so unattractive and superficial that your body has to look like this to keep a man (and it never keeps a man for long) You look at Demi and how tone and thin she is (too thin) well you can see how it worked for her young stud. I understand however it is important to keep fit and tone and not become obese but this is to the extreme and its as superficial as the love they share with that person on many levels.

    This message in this article is P R E D A T O R – which always reminds me of the movie predator when Arnold rips off the aliens mask and says: what the hell are you? Too bad I never got the opportunity to ask that same question with my “alien predator” !!! Whatever ploy, con or game they used to lure you no doubt is the same “gig” he has and/or will use on others in their triangulation agendas. And you are right, its really is boring and predictably evil – Relationships with these sick jerks not only turn “sour” but so rotten they stink. You have made me crave chocolate kisses now (love the pic) – I am so glad I have risen above all these pretense, false requirements these jerks burden us with – I am just me, far from perfect – I am not a perfect 6 and never want to be again – I prefer humanity and the shape of hearts now as opposed to the sharp painful edges of a triangle – This was a good article that makes us remember what the important stuff is x0x0 Linda

  5. Linda, this psychopathic behavior, of getting women dependent on your approval, then withdrawing it slowly so that they start jumping through hoops also reminds me of Dr. Rey, the really flashy plastic surgeon with his own show, whose wife also looked miserable and anorexic. She was wilting before our eyes. This pattern repeats itself every time for these social predators because they’re motivated by the need to control, not love, of course. As does the triangulation, for the same reason. If you have time, I’d recommend reading Chordelos de Laclos’s Dangerous Liaisons, the novel that was the inspiration for the movie, since it’s fantastic at showing the psychology of psychopathic seducers. That’s why I borrowed that title for my book on the subject:). Eighteenth-century libertine fiction, in general, is about psychopaths in action. Claudia

  6. Claudia, I love these articles because even though I’m not aware of it on a daily basis, I do often have doubts about my belief that my ex is a psychopath. I don’t realize this until I’m reading one of your articles and then find myself nodding my head and saying verbally out loud to myself, “Yes…..that’s it….exactly!” Thereby confirming my suspcions and discounting the doubts. The doubts I didn’t even realize I was having until I feel that sense of exhaling and confirmation while reading.

    You had asked me once, ( I think Kelli as well) about how do I really know my ex was faithful for the first few years of our relationship. I’m fairly confident because I saw how he enjoyed flaunting every conquest in front of me. Anytime a girl even smiled at him he’d be sure and tell me all about it and embellish it greatly. I don’t think it was for lack of trying that he was faithful. I think it was lack of resourse. There was a married woman at the school we worked at that he would often talk about. He’d talk about having such strong feelings for her that he needed to pray with a friend at work that he AND SHE would remain faithful and not begin an affair with one another. He didn’t share that particular detail with me until about yr after she’d moved and transfered schools and he lost all contact with her. But, he did mention many of his interactions and flirtations with her and hers back at him EVERY night after work. EVERY night. It drove me mad. He even told me I wasn’t allowed to attend his childrens baseball/softball games because he felt his ex wife would “go crazy” and do something to affect his child custody. However, he didn’t neglect to nonchalantly mention “Kelsey” showing up at one of the games with her dog and how silly and funny that was and how shocked he was at her just “showing up” like that. Gosh, now I am beginning to wonder about the two of them. He also either house sat for her parents, or somehow – don’t remember the details, but considered purchasing a home they were selling and visited the home with her. Something along those lines. She was a newlywed and I doubt had any intention of getting together with him. Perhaps, but I doubt it. There were numerous other women he’d talk about and try to pursue all the while making sure I was aware in one way or another of the interest or possibility. He LOVED hurting me in this way. I am certain if he were seeing someone else seriously and/or sleeping with someone else he would have toyed with me by dangling it in front my face as often and he thought he could get away with. Once when we were out to dinner he begin bragging about how the hostess was flirting with him and even gave him her number when I wasn’t looking. He showed me the napkin it was written on. I was highly suspicious of his story because I knew how he enjoyed hurting me and trying to make me jealous so I assumed it was another one of these occasions. I actually called the number and talked to the woman. It turns out the number belonged to someone who had phoned in a ‘to go” order and the hostess wrote her number down when she took the order. I didn’t tell Dumbass I made the call and enjoyed listening to him for months afterwards bringing up the hostess and how she wanted him. I think I told him a year afterward when he was agian telling me what a hot commodity he was and using this story as an example. Triangulation. I’m having a song coming to life…”Triangulation, infatuation….traingulation….its my reputation…..triangulation…. (sung to the tune of “conjunction junction, whats your function…hooking up clauses and phrases and…..” from PBS kids programming) 🙂

  7. Yep, that’s exactly what my ex did as well. I recall losing about 15 lbs over the course of a year and 1/2. Friends were worried about me also and wondering if I were anorexic. It’s so intriguing to me how common this actually is and how similar the patterns are thoughout all of our relationship, even though the men themselves and our lives are very different. Our experience as victims, both men and women are so similar.

  8. Good Evening All,

    Interesting posts. So good to see you posting again Lesley! Was wondering how you’ve been.

    There is something that jumped out at me as I read everyone’s responses here.

    The psychopath knows what will hurt women (women psychopaths also know what will hurt men too), and he also knows that women are shown by example, both at home and within society, perpetuated by media, cosmetic and lingerie ads, and the list goes on and on, how to be SKINNY. How to be PRETTY, SENSUAL, SEXY, HOT!! LOL!

    But it’s really not funny, is it, when it comes to a psychopath.

    I really want to tell you that the psychopath could care less WHAT you look like. You could be fat, skinny, or somewhere in between. My ex claimed to “Love” thin women, yet I guess he got bored with that and started dating heavy set, lonely women with money lol! or maybe it’s that the asshole is getting too old and butt ugly to attract much more than that……..ohhhhhh,…did I SAY THAT?? Yes, I did.

    To drive home a point. We worry too much about what the other women look like and we forget that the psychopath could care less. When he’s targeting, he’s looking for anyone, a mere OBJECT. with which to toy. She/he, could be fat, skinny, ugly, pretty, make up or no, long hair, short hair, shaven or unshaven…lol! To a psychopath IT DOESN”T MATTER!

    WHen I found out what my ex was trolling just prior to our split, as well as found about in the women he chose from the past, it was clear to me, that ALL of us were as different in looks, body weight, hair color, as could be. He counts on us to fight over who is better looking, he counts on us to call HER skank, nasty, whorish….while we overlook the reality that it doesn’t matter who she is at all. With a psychopath, EVERYONE he targets, is a potential victim and like ALL of us here, a potential survivor too. Also, whether you were the OW or the wife, to a psychopath, that doesn’t matter either. We are ALL the OW in these relationships. PD’s are simply NOT capable of monogamy, even if you THINK he was, and don’t know about the rest, he definitely has others. Its wired in their BRAINS to cheat. They cheat on their wives and they cheat on their OW’s with other OW’s. Do you see how INSANE that is?

    I think we spend far too much time attributing normal characteristics to a very sick person.

    And that’s my soap box for today, Ladies! Thanks for your posts, they enlighten me. Kel

  9. Kel, of course! When it’s all about power and you can’t really bond emotionally, all you do is attach to the most promising targets. Who cares what they look like or who they are? No matter who they are, the psychopath will flatter them in the beginning and then start honing in on their vulnerabilities and insecurities, to get them under his thumb. But the victims do share one psychological quality: blindness to what the psychopath truly is. For control-driven individuals, the most promising targets by far are those prone to psychological brainwashing, who truly worship them and would do anything for them. They tend to keep those individuals by their side (often even marry them) for two main reasons:

    a) control over someone body and soul, which is far better and more empowering for a psychopath than control of only the body in casual sex and flings and

    b) as a cover/mask (to look good for society) and accomplice. As you state, psychopaths find ways to use and demean even those primary targets, who are most devoted to them. Nobody is immune from the bite of a poisonous snake, especially when you live with one! Claudia

  10. Hi Keli! yes been working in a shop so no computer!! i love your line..
    I think we spend far too much time attributing normal characteristics to a very sick person.- that just hits it all right on the head does it not!! and they definitely do not care what the woman looks like. mine slept with a “huge fat girl” not because he liked her, but for the experience, to see if he could “handle a fat bird”..what a joy these types are.

  11. Lesley, some people they target in order to humiliate them right away (“fat bird”), others they use as trophies so they can feel empowered they conquered them. However, even those trophies are eventually debased and humiliated by the psychopath. Ultimately, such a strongly narcissistic personality always needs to be top dog and can’t have the spotlight taken away, not even by a trophy. At least not for long! Idealize, devalue and discard. Not everyone gets idealized by the psychopath, but everyone gets eventually devalued. Claudia

  12. Lisa, what your ex did shows his psychological sadism and also his smallness. Only a very trivial person needs to generate such drama and jealousy to make himself look big and important. Claudia

  13. Lisa, my ex got his ex-wife, who was not fat, to join Overeaters Anonymous a year into their marriage. Throughout their over 14 years of marriage she was obsessed with her weight. Not because she had an objective weight problem, but because he planted that insecurity in her head so that he could better control her with it. If she thinks she’s too fat, then she thinks she’s unattractive and doesn’t deserve a somatic narcissist like him (he exercises compulsively to keep in shape). I’m willing to bet that soon he will start planting insecurities in the new wife’s head too, for the same reason. It will have nothing to do with objective facts, but with perception. Psychopaths need to control others and they can only do so through manipulation and exploiting their need for adulation and insecurities. Claudia

  14. Claudia/Leslie/Kelli, So true. All of the points you make. The last woman my ex was with (prior to the current one he is with), was a homecoming queen in HS. During my ex’s depression this summer he once lamented “I got a homecoming queen to go out with me!” If I recall the topic of conversation was about his current lack of confidence due to the depression as opposed to his inflated ego while he was conquering her. It just so happens he had the confidence to conquer his homecoming queen just after becoming overly confident over the year long triangulation between myself and the first true triangulated affair he had while we were still together. He so thrived on the competition between us. I for one, refused for a long while to “compete” with her. I actually really liked her and told him countless times, “If you want her, go! There’s the door I’m not going to hold onto you if you want to leave, go!” But she was incredibly competitive and fed his ego LOTS. Often saying to him when he would so frequently discard her “Why does Lisa always win?!” To which I would respond, “Win what?” A man who lies to us, cheats on us and abuses us. Oh goodie gooodie what a prize I have.” He’d also say to me If I ever cheated on him that would be the end. Because “With women they compete and try harder to please their man when they think he’s with, or wants someone else. But, men look at women as “damaged goods” if they cheat on them.” What an arse! Just shows my own mental sickness and insecurity at the time that I put up with that behavior and stuck with him. So, glad those days are behind me.

  15. Lisa, the women who fight to keep a psychopathic Loser, and especially those who “win” him all lose out: they lose their energy, their time, and ultimately their dignity. It’s an enormous loss, given that each of us only has one life to live. But, ultimately, it’s up to each of us to choose how, and with whom, we wish to live it. Claudia

  16. Lisa

    Sometimes I see cog/dis in some of your posts. This is a fine line that I think is really hard to cross. With everything in the above posts of yours, I see this: HE CHEATED ON YOU FROM THE BEGINNING.

    Believe it or not, I thought mine was actually faithful to his wife prior to his affair with me. I have found out that that was not the truth. Very shortly into his second marriage, he started another affair with another client that last four years. I BLEW off my intuitions that there were many other women, other than his wife and I too. Mine also would use his wife to hurt me, make her the “winner” in the scenario, but all that did was increase my own psychological sickness in his games as well as denying what I knew intuitively to be true: There were others. MANY, MANY others. I’m now grasping this concept completely having had the opportunity to know that he is yet again out trolling women after only four months of marriage.

    My point is this: Your ex cheated on you left and right. It was pointless to wave an actual sexual encounter in your face, as he already knew that his mention of women bothered you, to say the least. Secondly he put you in a position for triangulation merely by implication and suggestion, rather than admitting he was also a sexual predator. He hid well, like my ex hid well, and many of them do. Even if you never find about the rest of them, you were NOT the only one and he was NOT faithful to you. Monogamy and psychopaths are a contradiction in terms in the extreme. I now understand why fidelity is not possible. If the psychopath is able to get away with what yours and everyone else’s here did with just the emotional/verbal abuse alone, he wouldn’t have any issue cheating on your either. I learned this: Whatever you suspected then, KNOW IT TO BE TRUE.
    Another thing, I still see an application of normal human traits upon a psychopath. I think your ex “act of depression” was merely a way to get your sympathies and sucked back in, while also eliciting the sympathies of other women. In Martha Stout’s book, “The Sociopath Next Door” she mentions this in that if someone is playing for your pity while also hurting you, chances are close to ONE HUNDRED PERCENT, you’re dealing with a sociopath! Hmmmm……..

    He had no moral conscience, Lisa. It’s really hard for any of us to accept and it takes a long time, but we were nothing special to them at all. And nor was anyone else. It simply isn’t a possibility. Kel

  17. Lesley!

    LOL! Yep! Merely objects. A hole is a hole is a hole. That is a very crude statement, but it is simply the truth. I think their BOREDOM and excitement seeking makes it impossible to be faithful. What an awful life to live! Although to THEM, they see not a thing wrong with it. That would be easy to do when you are deficient in conscience. Kel

  18. Lesley,

    You’ve been doing remarkably well. I so enjoy your posts and am so glad you’re back! It’s great when we watch someone progress in their healing process. Some we won’t see again, and I know that’s part of the process too, they leave the psychopath behind completely, then there are others who make it their mission after this experience to bring awareness to the public in general and to help other victims when possible.

    I wonder how Chris is doing? Hey Chris, if you’re out there and you catch us here again, please let us know you’re ok!

    Good job Lesley! Kel

  19. Lisa and Kel, Absolutely! There’s no way a psychopath has one moment of fidelity to anyone. He just hides it better when it suits him. But even for those partners of psychopaths who are “beyond good and evil”, to use Nietzsche’s formulation, or who are proud of being libertine and unconventional and reject traditional moral norms like fidelity, the psychopath will find other ways to humiliate and punish them. Why? Because that’s what psychopaths do to feel dominant. It’s the core of their personality disorder.

    My psychopathic ex justified to me hurting ALL the women he had been with, be they virtuous and traditional or not. About his virtuous wife, he claimed she wasn’t attractive, sexual and interesting enough for him. When he cheated on her, he justified it in terms of her not being good enough or right for him anymore. When he hurt and humiliated sexually promiscuous women, however, such as the women he slept with in grad school, he’d beam and state: “Those bitches deserved it. They shouldn’t have messed with me!” Virtuous and conventional women deserved the abuse; promiscuous, libertine and unconventional women deserved it too. Who does that leave out? Basically, in his mind, EVERYONE deserved being abused.

    Yes, that lack of conscience and even sadistic pride in causing harm to others was another huge RED FLAG I saw at the end of our relationship: an all-pervasive misogyny, hidden under a layer of fake charm and flattery whenever he wanted to conquer people or manipulate them into doing as he wished.

    But all targets of manipulation eventually exhaust their use-value for a psychopath, as newer prospects come along or as he gets periodically bored with the relationship. That’s when the mask comes off and you see that just as he used and abused all other women, and rationalized it in terms of them somehow deserving it, he will also use and abuse you as well, sooner or later. This basic truth will resonate with newer (primary) targets not when they’re still in the midst of the honeymoon phase, but when the emotional abuse, control and manipulation–hidden at first under the mask of “true love” and “passion”–become more obviously nasty and degrading. This is the inevitable trajectory of every intimate relationship with a psychopath, however exciting, mutual and romantic it may seem for a period of time, as I show in my upcoming second novel, The Seducer. Claudia

  20. Lisa:

    “He so thrived on the competition between us. I for one, refused for a long while to “compete” with her. I actually really liked her and told him countless times, “If you want her, go! There’s the door I’m not going to hold onto you if you want to leave, go!”

    LOL! Lisa, this hit me so funny! I use to say the same to my ex when I would encourage him to go work his marriage, frustrated over his “hanging her over my head” all the time one minute, while proclaiming his undying love for me the next. I’d say, “Well then GO, go work your marriage!” And ALWAYS his comeback was, “Nope. Too much WORK” hmmmm, well relationshits with psychopaths are DEFINITELY work on both sides but for very different reasons lol!

    Anyway,..when I think about it now, what purpose did it serve for me to say that to him? It sounds so pious, Like my offering him this wonderful “choice” between having me or his wife, let alone someone else should be the icing on HIS cake. What insanity that statement really was. Lisa, actually, your words meant nothing and you did “compete” with her by giving him an ultimatum rather than kicking him to the curb. He knew you were puling his leg. They know that no matter what they do, we’ll stay. You can bet that your action of staying, it definitely validated his belief that he could continue to abuse. Aren’t you GLAD to be DONE with that. Kel

  21. Linda,

    I really love the last sentence here of your post. You have a writing gift 🙂


  22. Lesley/All – Your x had so many of the same behaviors as mine did; the perversion, threesome activity etc…. You are absolutely correct it matters really not what their sexual targets look like – my counselor once told me that if I could see his sexual partners that I would be SHOCKED to see what they looked like and the caliber of women they were – Mine wanted to sleep with a woman that was about 8 months pregnant thought that would be really exotic to experience – forget the fact there is a human life in there growing he just wanted to see what it would feel like – it was all associated with perversion for him – he wanted a pic of me pregnant told me it would be such a turn on that he would J–k off to it, so I know very very well how you have come to see your x as so very very very SICK!!!! Mine also told me big birds “felt”better and he hated skinny women did nothing for him., He told me they reminded him of crack whores. He was a real peach eh? They are pretty indiscriminate in who they choose for sex partners – looks, beauty does not matter to a sexual perverted addict – the focus is on the experience and focusing on something that is totally different for the sex. He often told me “who care is they are ugly, and obese, they take their pants off the same way I do” I can imagine how many lonely “Big Birds” he has targeted, these women probably think they found someone who loves them for what they are, but little did they know he was targeting and using these women (who no doubt had difficulty finding sexual partners because of their weight – we know what society is like ) just to further his perversion and I am sure these women were easy to talk into what he wanted them for. I am sure they were lovely, kind women who thought they had found the love of their life.

    As I look back and remember how he always told me how sexy my body was (in its size 8-10 frame) it really never mattered to him what size I was or WHAT I looked like he was always telling me to gain more weight – I like to keep my weight down because its helps my high blood pressure – when I start to wear size 12’s my blood pressure is higher – but the point I am making here is NO WONDER they can get so MANY different sexual targets because it has nothing to do with how attractive or fit we may be – or what good qualities we have – they turn everything into perversion – so in our minds we wonder if the other women are prettier, thinner, this or that – we should never ever wonder about these things because as you said, we tend to apply normal thoughts and concerns to these sick people and it has absolutely nothing to do with our physical attributes but only how they can target, use and manipulate our insecurities to promote their agendas. I can so relate to the pain in your recovery Lesley I am sure he once appeared as the perfect love of your life as mine once did and right before your eyes they transform into the sick animal that they really are. I dont know why I was so concerned about what his Gf looked like – she could have been a Victoria Secret model and it would not have mattered because these men dont care – we are talking about a sexual predator here and we know the only thing they care about – power, control, perversion and the ability to exploit all their targets sexually and otherwise x0x0 linda

  23. Linda, when the capacity to love, care and bond are missing, all you have left in sex is new thrills and perversions, both tied (pun intended:) to dominance. That’s all that psychopaths get out of sex and that’s why it doesn’t matter who they have it with. The only difference among targets is that psychopaths hve a constant list of priorities/top targets in their minds, whom they pursue most feverishly for a period of time, until that list shifts or changes. The combination of predatory focus, flattery and lies makes those temporary top targets feel special and even loved or appreciated for who they are: which is the biggest lie or fraud. Claudia

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