Category Archives: Recovery Forums

Tight Ships Do Sink – New PF Screenshots

Through the kindness of someone who has emailed screenshots of a recent internal debacle at PF, former members who still return to this blog can see the their practices questioned and discussed, and of course justified (quite poorly, I might add).

It appears that a number of long-term members are openly challenging the team’s treatment of them, the response being that they have formed a mutinous clique and there can be no other clique than the one in charge. The sycophancy of some, who accept this authority of PF over their life decisions, is fairly disturbing.

The dispute involved a long term member, admonished for the apparently inexcusable crime of having invited her ex to a conversation… last year. And having maintained a business-related channel for him to contact her, which obviously is related to her livelihood. Arguably, a normal group of friends would not attempt to get this person to overdramatise the presumed danger she has put herself in by simply contacting said ex, let alone chastise her for it. That’s not what emotional support is about. But then again, this is no normal group of friends, but Fahrenheit 451 with a twist of sour lemons.

On the PF mother ship, one is no longer allowed to be human. Being human is a sign of imperfection; a transgression of ideological purity. They cannot see how their attitude of excluding people for normal human interaction with “undesirables” renders them as bigoted as fundamentalist Mormons, who mandate that remaining with a partner/ spouse is an absolute, regardless of other factors. It comes from a need to control what others do, to regulate the details of other people’s lives.

When someone is truly empathetic, they listen. They take your life experience into account and seek to learn from it just as you might learn from them. Throwing the book at people on a constant basis is reserved for preachers and hypocritical moralists; it indicates distance and superficiality, not friendship.

Apologies for the size; when enlarged the text becomes blurred and impossible to read. Saving them makes them readable. I will extract some relevant quotes and comment on them below.

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“She received an email and came here to get help and reinforcement to not respond, which was the right thing to do. After several days of pages and feedback form other members, it appeared she was going to ignore the hoover. What happened next though is she popped up in here a couple of weeks later with this dramatic, attention-grabbing thread written in ALL CAPS, as if it were breaking news, bragging about 1000% validation for doing everything she was told NOT to do. (…)

But the arrogance and false bravado with which she bragged about it and took offence with certain members and administrators who didn’t “congratulate” her for her supposed “closure” and breaking NC was a big part of the issue. It was only when she received some feedback from seasoned veterans that she didn’t want to hear, that she wanted her thread taken down. But then she started another thread, thanking members for their support in this thread and passive-aggressively complaining about the members who did not express unwavering support. That thread was taken down.” (Smitten Kitten)

Quick recap here, in more realistic terms. The member sought their advice but did not follow it, as, lo and behold, it was, ultimately, her life. Her choice turned out to work better for her than theirs. Instead of being happy that she was in a better place, they were outraged that she dared to break the community rules. Because in the end, it was all about them, not her, though they wouldn’t benefit or suffer whatsoever as a result of her choice. Them or anyone else on this planet. It was such a terrible affront that they never stopped to contemplate that she was, in fact, feeling better about her situation. You’d think they were trying to dissuade this woman from joining ISIS.

If you read through this admin’s entire account of matters, it’s rather bemusing.

“Honestly I am sick of PF becoming a place where the admins are accused of wrongdoing for reacting in an adult way to non-adult situations.” (Peace)

I recall the numerous cases, on this blog alone (not to mention other platforms), of members banned out of the blue, without an explanation, even after requesting one. An adult would at least dignify a supposed friend of a few years with a quick response. Is that so emotionally straining? What about the way they treated Thomas Sheridan, with a hysterical and vicious smear campaign? Is that an adult way to do things?

“While folks may say or do things out of pain, that doesn’t erase the hurtful effects that those words & actions have on their recipients. Yes, we are all human. That doesn’t make it okay to blame a website or friend for one’s internal discomfort.” (Peace)

How about applying not blaming a friend for one’s internal discomfort when thinking of those “hurtful effects” then? Do some people have more of a right to be hurt by others and act on it? How is it so unbearable to be questioned that you have to exclude this person from the communal entourage, cutting them off from everyone else?

“People here declare abuse or judgement or censorship because they aren’t validated 100% for everything they do.” (Peace)

When you react with such effervescence to common actions they take, and declare them potentially unfit for your group of straight-thinkers, excuse people for taking offence. I’d say a mirror is required here. It’s them who don’t validate you through what they choose to do with their lives in the end, and you find that unacceptable. You find them unworthy of speaking to unless they adhere to your exact guidance. Because you couldn’t possibly find valuable insight in someone else’s experience. You’re way above learning about life.

“That’s not how growth works.” (Peace)

Perpetually failing to address concerns or criticism, by blocking people and running away, is not how growth works either. You might as well cover your ears and start humming. Unless of course, you think in your case growth is no longer required, because you’ve already achieved the status of an all-knowing being.

“PF is not an echo chamber to validate and say “yes you’re right” to everyone all the time.” (Peace)

That’s exactly what it is, only in reverse. Admins and mods have an imperious need to be validated by other people living their lives by each letter in their program. If you fail to comply, you are of no use to them anymore.

“If anyone else would like to leave, they are welcome to do so. Please just contact us privately, instead of these dramatic public exits.” (Peace)

Quite a leap from seeing members off, or even their fellow admins and mods, with a rotten tomato fair-well party, accusing them of being disordered. I assume those were not dramatic exists.

“I 1000% agree with what you all have written here and especially in connection with what I have recently been astonished and confused by in witnessing in connection to the arrogance with regard to PF where some members feel that its theirs and theirs alone so, it might be perceived as “anything goes”. The statement of, “US against the admins” reminded me of a line from Lord of the Flies. REALLY????” (Phoenix)

I don’t know about entitlement to speak your mind on a forum of so-called unconditional friends – I’d worry more about the entitlement of someone else’s life being yours to manage, and the idea that not following your directives and contradicting your perspective is offensive. This person realised she didn’t have to do what they dictated. That she could choose for herself and surprisingly, it could have better results.

“On reflection, and simply put, a moment of strait talking and the resultant shock, can save years of unnecessary emotional abuse after taking a step back and properly “digesting” and evaluating. In my view, PF has always been about “the greater good, for the greater number”, never the reverse.” (Phoenix)

Explain to me how this is different than a fundamentalist religious group. Preemptive saving of the congregation. Do not speak to this person even once because he’ll end up convincing you to go back and you will suffer for years. Do not look at that Playboy as you will end up having orgies and getting HIV. These people don’t know where they themselves will be in five years’ time, let alone someone else.

The crux of the matter is their quest is not to help individuals – otherwise they would at least take a moment to be happy for them when their lives improve. Individuals don’t matter; the cult mentality does.

“We thought closing registrations would help calm things down and make it easier to keep the peace without an influx of new trolls, but of course that doesn’t solve the problem of existing trolls who are already here.” (Smitten Kitten)

She is referring to someone who had been there for years, not a “troll”. Regardless of how well you think these people know you, trusting they would never class you as such, surprise.

“Instead, there seems to be some new kind of arrogance that’s developed in some of the membership, where they act like they’re part of an exclusive club now and they act like that gives them the right to complain about us whenever they feel like it.” (Smitten Kitten)

Pure lese-majeste, which is French for an affront to royalty, or authority, by association. Subversion, no less.

Perhaps said members are connecting privately and starting to realise what really goes on. There should be little doubt with regards to what admins think they’re running there. It has nothing to do with friendship or even consideration towards others, let alone helping vulnerable people, and everything to do with control and self-aggrandisement.

 

Internet Cult Posing As A Philosophy Group

People who have recently been exposed to Freedomain Radio podcasts and videos probably accessed them for an in-depth analysis of current events, as the material seems quite popular with the sceptic “community”, as well as the alt-right (the two seeming to fuse nowadays on social media).

Unbeknownst to new listeners, this group is a proper cult aimed at reaching young people at the age of individuation; it used to convince them to separate from their families by cutting all contact, a practice known as “defooing”, which has its dedicated website for members, defoo.org, reminiscent of Scientology or the Exclusive Brethren. Although apparently the advocacy for this has stopped (perhaps for legal reasons) the consequences remain.

The young people lured through discussions about politics, ethics, dogmas and so forth were encouraged to analyse their entire lives in ways which would lead them to think their families were morally corrupt and sabotaging them psychologically, at an age of being prone to rebelling naturally, which exacerbated the effect. They were encouraged to move out of their homes, which led to homelessness in various cases and at least one suicide, leaving behind dumbfounded families who only understood what had happened when discovering their children’s interest in Freedomain Radio.

From the start, members were told it was their duty to “get out there” and “become active” in order to help create a better world, and that occasional support such as the odd donation or product purchase was not enough for them to consider themselves “part of the conversation”.

As former members recounted, the group went way beyond what abuse recovery forums do, as it encouraged them to publicly berate the families trying to bring them back, even reading out private letters and emails for the world to hear, which reaches a deeply disturbing level of arrogance. Instead of the promised liberation, young people found themselves increasingly depersonalised, at least two describing a loss of interest for anything outside of group discussions.

Ad-hoc psychoanalysis was used by the leader to mimic a deep bond and understanding; it was also employed towards “recovering repressed memories”, in order to further antagonise them against their parents or even siblings and friends. They even used to provide those who wished to leave their families with a standard “goodbye letter”, in case they felt they could not formulate their own. Moreover, some of the most dedicated members ended up living together after “defooing”.

The group remains very popular today, continuing to attract those who consider themselves anti-system. Akin to any cult, they reject what their former peers have brought to light and berate them for being “weak enough to return to their morally corrupt families”.

There is plenty material on YouTube and dedicated sites, consisting of testimonies from former members and their loved ones, as well as the input of cult experts, confirming the nature of these dynamics.

 

New Evidence Of Disturbing Extremism On Psychopath Free

(Sorry about the size of the images; I simply copied the text on each one.)

It seems the assumption that behind closed doors PF would become even more deranged in terms of its treatment of members (and cult-ish behaviour in general) was spot on.

Someone who still has access to their account was kind enough to take screen shots and send them; they reveal what seems to be a complete lack of sanity.

First off, as seen below, a member wishing to leave and have their account deleted is immediately labelled an impostor and a narcissist/ sociopath/ psychopath, for merely stating they didn’t need the forum anymore.

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Being myself is all I need to believe in. Please delete my account here at PF

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I think you need to contact one of the administrators, @SmittenKitten or @Victoria or @Indie917.

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Joined in July of 2013 and never posted until October of this year. Most of the posts don’t make sense.

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Ah, secret nsp in our midst just looking for a reason to start shit to devalue our forum?

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We’ve had a few of those, what I call “Sleeper Cells”, suddenly become active since we shut the doors.

Seriously, what kind of group outright accuses you of being the worst kind of person imaginable, just for saying you want to leave them? What kind of “sense” does that make? It’s obvious that these people are a joke, as a community anyway, and that they always have been.

If that is their methodology in recognising personality disorders, one that they were very keen on peddling to schools and psychology practices, allow me to assume they wouldn’t have been taken seriously.

Such is their conviction of unchallenged expertise that they aspired to spread it all over the world, only a few months ago.

And if you want to see something even sicker, look no further.

According to a group of devout PF members, a woman can be labelled a “narcissistic mother” for dying one day after her daughter, apparently, to … get attention. The posts below refer to the sad recent passing of Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds, both of natural causes, though it is quite clear that Debbie Reynolds’ death was accelerated by her daughter’s, which is not uncommon within families.

The high calibre humanists and sensitive snowflakes on PF somehow ended up seeing a grief-stricken mother as a “narc” who wanted to “steal her daughter’s moment of fame” by none other than dying.

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Yeah, shoot me. Tell me I will burn in hell. Go ahead.

But I cannot help but be triggered by the outpouring of grief for the Hollywood star, Debbie Reynolds.

Sorry Carrie. You had your five minutes.

Sorry PF members. I’m feeling bitter.

(7 members like this)

 

pf3

Do you see that Debbie Reynolds was a Narc Mother Charlie??

That’s what I think you mean. I must do some research.

It does seem odd she died only a day later taking all the attention of the headlines, so soon after Carrie.

(4 members like this)

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I actually thought the same thing. Deb just couldn’t let the spotlight be off of herself!

( 3 members like this)

 

I’m not sure further comments are even needed…

A big thank you to the member who sent this, as it is a very revealing “inside glimpse”. And though posting these screen shots here might be perceived as intrusive, we can’t forget that these people are playing with the personal details and even sanity of those they have lured.

Later edit: PF banning members for… liking another author, possibly seen as “competition”

Melanie Tonia Evans, also referred to as MTE for short (on their forum anyway) is an author exploring roughly the same topics as they do, from a personal perspective, apparently introducing too many nuances for their liking, versus the black and white view of human interaction they propose. Although her motivation is at least partially financial – which appears to be par for the course in this field – it seems extreme for PF to take such a strong stance that she can’t even be mentioned. After all, what are they selling, if not made-up solutions to the problems of those in need?

The following quotes are from a thread about her (sorry for posting them so late after they were sent), after having previously referred to one of her books as a resource, in 2011.

 

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(…) So when I  looked at Melanie Tonia Evans’ website I was already feeling skeptical about paying for reading materials. After all, there is a wealth of information here, on the internet, and also in Peace’s book, which I have read 3 times now.

I think that this site is the most helpful, the most supportive, and certainly understands what it means to be empathetic. I am so grateful for its existence.

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I am amazed how many threads exist in this forum…!! I decided to do a search on Melanie Tonia Evans and see if anyone here has used her Narcissistic Recovery Program. I too was skeptical; after all, she was a victim who asked for a miracle, and had an epiphany. This is something ALL of us can ask for and receive in our own individual way, (free of charge).

I have a problem with receiving something FREE and then SELLING it (“buy the Truth and sell it not”)

(…) I may purchase it, and if I do, I will let everyone know how it worked.

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For the newer members: MTE and SLC are not recommended by PF. There are some threads in the Meta sub-forum about them. Stick with the resources listed here.

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MTE is Melanie Tonia Evans, who has a website charging victims of narcissistic abuse lots of money for taking her modules and online courses. Her approach also includes a lot victim-blaming and co-dependency claims along with what we call perpetrator-sympathisning in feeling pity for the abusers.

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We don’t support MTE here and that’s why I referred to her regarding the link to the other site that was posted that has a similar style and approach o hers.

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Of course… didn’t get anyone to take the bait and get into an argument, so threw this link in out of nowhere. This one couldn’t WAIT to get banned and is probably pissing himself while he ramps up another already-existing sockpuppet account.

Three of these posts stand out in my opinion – one claiming not to need other resources but PF, another mandating that members stick to the resources listed on the site and of course, the admin’s power trip display in the end, while banning someone suspected of trolling (I presume) for linking to MTE.

Also notice the language, the venom and contemplate being on the wrong side of PF staff, ever, even through a misunderstanding. Then contemplate having given them your most intimate details beforehand.

 

New article on Psychopath Free: “What if they’re not a sociopath?”

This post is in response to this new PF article, based on the idea that healing from a hurtful relationship is all that matters, combined with dealing with your own demons – which would normally be true, except for the situations detailed below. Here is the conclusion of the article:

The question “What if they’re not really a sociopath?” loses all of its significance when we come to love ourselves regardless of the answer.

To start with, the article conveys a warm, fluffy and appeasing feeling, detailing doubts which might arise and nuancing an individual’s response to a failed relationship – an introspection which would undoubtedly be positive … were the website not called Psychopath Free, claiming to teach people how to identify  and deal with monsters. Not people who at one point in time displayed toxic behaviours. Soulless, irredeemable monsters.

It matters when you have publicly labelled said person a sociopath

This label is far from a private matter, at one’s discretion to keep or discard, when it was turned into a public accusation, ranging from a circle of friends to the presumed sociopath’s own family. Where exactly does the hipsterism fit in once you’ve damaged that person’s life?

Of course, one might argue that they’ve also damaged yours in ways which are difficult to repair. But still, does that absolve someone of the wrongdoing of tarnishing another’s reputation?

When you broke up with a significant other specifically because you applied this label

Which I’m sure has been the case on PF time and time again – confused people coming across the “life-saving” information which raises their adrenaline, feeling self-righteous beyond the shadow of doubt and making crucial decisions based on it.

The sheer thought that a loved one is impossible to deal with by default has been breaking marriages and relationships apart. At times, had it not been for this black and white thinking, many people would’ve surely reconsidered.

While I believe that education about narcissism and sociopathy are essential to healing and sanity restoration (especially in the early stages as we break the chemical bond and learn to go No Contact), I think there is something very powerful about eventually releasing this duality.

That’s just it – they are essential to those who are genuinely involved with these types, not to the rest, who might think they are in a moment of desolation, to later brood over their assessment and find it impulsive and inaccurate. People can heal from heartache without resorting to this demonisation, which is anything but sanity when untrue.

He is basically saying that this “education”, as well as going no contact, is essential even to those who later question their judgement. In the vein of act now, think later.

With the risk of emphasising this for the hundredth time: even when a lot of heartache was involved, on one or both sides, it doesn’t mean one has to give up on the relationship, as if this were the only beneficial route. Assuming that ending it was for the best regardless, even if the label is later questioned, and that reading about disordered people was just a prop towards the “liberating” break-up even when said person was not necessarily disordered, is absolutely ridiculous.

When you claim to be an expert on sociopathy and coach others on the subject

Basing your entire expertise on your experience, “educating” others with fanatical dedication, influencing their lives (sometimes irreversibly) and suddenly turning around to say that it doesn’t really matter if your judgement was correct regarding said experience just doesn’t fly.

It is basically stating that your cut-in-stone perspective on human interaction just might be based on a murky, questionable situation, in which you just might’ve been wrong. In this case, the smallest of doubts matters a great deal. Because you might’ve – just might’ve – fed lorry loads of horse manure to all the people who regarded your approach as the absolute truth.

One of the most common questions asked during recovery is: “Was he/she really a sociopath?” Survivors ask this question over and over again, because for most of us, the alternative is the sociopath’s reality: “You are crazy, jealous, sensitive, paranoid, unattractive, unwanted.” And so we oscillate back and forth between these two realities: bad other, or bad self.

This binary excludes the middle ground – actual rationality and sanity, which admits the possibility of both individuals being wrong at the same time, to various degrees. One for saying hurtful things and the second  for taking them as the absolute reality of the other’s thinking, prompting them to label the other as a merciless sociopath.

There is no need for this radicalism, as if one were completely incapable of analysing matters beyond “I was right” versus “this person was right”.

This is not a healthy way to look at life and people who tend to think in black and white should not be teaching others how to handle their problems.

 

The post is followed by quite a few which are glorifying an empath’s ability to love, regardless of their presumed sociopath’s behaviour. I know this will sound cruel on my part, but in this context it seems like a self-gratifying exercise which does not address the real question – what if the people they labelled as such were not actually sociopaths?

This article not only implies but states it is beyond the issue for anyone “recovering” from a hurtful relationship. Is it really though? Is loving yourself enough to obliterate any damage you might’ve done to someone and any afterthoughts about what might’ve been in the absence of this label? And is loving yourself enough to give you confidence to keep “spreading the word” about disordered people, even in the absence of certainty that you have even met one? And regardless of the damage you might do to others who believe you know what you’re preaching?

The answer is logical.

Holiday Misery – A Presumed Red Flag Of Narcissism

There are dozens of articles and videos describing how narcissists are always miserable during holidays others fully enjoy and make a point out of ruining them for everyone else.

Never having met one, to my knowledge, I  can’t claim to be able to dismiss this criterion; however, if this is one important reason why you have labelled a person as such, please think twice – as there are many valid reasons for not sharing the holiday cheer.

  1. People don’t have a “happy” button they can push for social convenience. The more this is asked of them, the more miserable and antisocial they will become.

Whereas for some, a diversion from their usual existence is more than welcome, for others, this yearly ritual of let’s try to be happy (desperately, clinging to this magnificent day as if we were in danger of missing the boat to move overseas) is just as dry and robotic; difficult to understand, in a way. Here is  an article on the matter, describing a whole nation experiencing feelings of gratitude, being kinder, reacting emotionally to songs and symbols, as if these things suddenly occurred on cue at that time of the year.

For many in the United States, as the month of November approaches, their spirits begin to lift as they start to prepare and decorate for Thanksgiving and they reflect on the blessings that they are grateful for.In December, the holiday songs, decorations and white bearded guy in the red suit reminds everyone to spread goodwill and cheer to others.

Let’s forget about the location for a moment, as people around the world could make the same statement. The first issue I have with this is that feelings are private, not collective; one can’t simply tap into the communal cheer as many claim, and catch it from others. It’s not Ebola FFS.

A human being does not owe these feelings to anybody. It is absurd to claim that someone’s mood should be lifted simply by how other people feel; it is also absurd to claim that joy is a cultural thing, brought on by certain stimuli such as dates or decorations or costumes (much like bulls react in a predetermined way when they see red).

Another common way narcissists deflate holiday bubbles is to buy the worst gift imaginable or cry “poverty” to get out of having to purchase gifts at all. Many narcissists will even purchase something they purposely know won’t be liked, only to delight in the disappointed expression on faces as the gift is opened. (same source)

So that spiritual high is at least partially material, and if one cannot “pay their dues” to the communal happiness by buying gifts, they are somehow inferior?  Perhaps they are themselves fed up with this culture of customs become obligations and happiness derived from what lies underneath the wrapping paper. Giving gifts is wonderful when it actually comes from one’s heart. When the “joy of giving” becomes the stress of where to get money to rise up to everyone’s expectations… it is visibly just another chore on the year’s calendar. Nothing spiritual in the slightest – hence one cannot genuinely claim heartache from not receiving the kind of gift they wanted, for some reason. That is superficial and snobbish, sorry to say. (PS, think of the worst gifts you’ve ever received and then consider the following: a Chuckie doll, a box of toilet brushes, a ticket to see feminist theatre which would scar you for life.)

On the deeper level, Sam Vaknin describes the narcissist’s need of complete autonomy , which manifests by rejecting what society tries to impose – forced cheerfulness and celebration on certain occasions – corroborated with the need to control how others feel and to bring them down. Whereas the latter is indeed toxic, I can safely argue that the need to reject any imposition related to how they should feel is natural. They might just experience a visceral repulsion  towards anything that is artificial, without ever looking down on those who embrace it.

When a person deems a partner cruel and neglectful because of this rejection of conformity, they’re basically stating that they long to be like everyone else, to have and do what everyone has and does around them. In my view this is not a natural and personal need but a culturally imposed one and should not come between two people.

2. They might just be a nonbeliever among a group of believers ceaselessly attempting to drag them into the “holiday spirit”.

This year I had my first Easter as a non-Christian in a very religious country, where for 3 days (although I think it extends to 40) people greet each other with “Christ was resurrected” instead of hello. But during the three days of Easter, if you greet them with a simple hello, they give you some right funny looks. Some older people don’t even reply; they think you’re being dead rude. It’s the type of context of being constantly warned not to work or wash on a Sunday, in spite of repeating you have no fear of any higher power smiting you with lighting for turning the washing machine on. So I can totally sympathise with anyone in that context or any variation.

3. The nauseating commercial mania is enough to put some people off.

As we’ve all become accustomed to, Christmas tends to start in October now. If during the rest of the year major stores (at least) are conniving, annoying and relentless towards making people buy things they don’t need, during the holiday season it’s like they’re all on cocaine. Some folks, myself included, find that this intoxication drains the spirit right out of such occasions.

4. The personal turned impersonal

Nowadays, someone needn’t even write a few lines on a card for a loved one; they can pick from a variety of standard messages and just sign their name in a hurry. Let’s call these depersonalised cards. As to Valentine’s Day (when society assumes every couple enjoys a mandatory evening out and mandatory sex), aside from its blatantly commercial nature, the whole concept of something intimate being celebrated collectively is uncomfortable to say the least. If anything, it’s proof of the robotic nature of our existence, with a preset date for the best quality romanticism.

Slowly, our interest is being compartmentalised, with foreign groups somewhere deciding which days or months are to be dedicated to a particular matter. Not that certain matters weren’t important or worthy of more awareness, yet setting international standards for what people should focus on, on fixed occasions, is not natural.

5. People can also hate larger celebrations due to social anxiety, simply preferring to be alone or in a very small group.

If someone feels out of place in a room full of people they’re not close to, there’s probably nothing you can do to fix them – because they don’t need fixing. It’s just how they are and how they approach life. Some think they’re doing others a favour by forcing them to socialise or that others have a “duty” to attend an event with them, even if they feel out of place the whole time. It’s like putting a drop of oil in a glass of water – it will always end up isolated and taciturn, and will probably make others feel uncomfortable as well.

Perhaps this analysis is somewhat superficial, yet might raise useful points to anyone who places an emphasis on conforming to the norm to the degree that it causes trouble in their relationships with others.

 

What Is NOT Gaslighting

By now, many people are familiar with this notion, especially if they have an interest in unhealthy interpersonal dynamics. A brief article explaining gaslighting can be found here. First of all, a few ideas are worth noting (though doing so might seem superfluous):

  • -It is inflicted on a victim by an abuser who believes to be superior;
  • -It is a consistent technique ( it’s used more than once);
  • -It is always deliberate (planned, organised in cold blood);
  • -It is meant to cause actual suffering (confusion, self doubt, low self confidence etc).

After encountering this term in a variety of inappropriate situations – its use being meant to accuse someone of foul intentions – there are some observations to make regarding what is – only in my view of course – not gaslighting.

  1. Someone trying to convince you of their opinion (yes, I know how stupid that sounds). A couple of times I’ve seen this artifice used on PF, along the lines of:

You want me to see this event your way, not mine, therefore you are trying to make me replace my version of reality with yours, therefore you are gaslighting me.

Which is of course an eerie, cult-like stretch, caused by a person automatically analysing the world through the lens of psychopathic behaviour – a lens most people do not use on a daily basis. One often has a different perspective and imparts it ingenuously, debating others; most people understand that; it’s only to the paranoid that a different opinion can seem a devious attempt to blur their sense of reality.

From everyone is entitled to an opinion it suddenly becomes  telling me that my view/ my perception is not accurate is abusive.  Which practically means they’re always right and contradicting them is a direct attack on their well-being.

2. Most fleeting conversations (online or not).

With an emphasis on ”fleeting”. Although presumably there are those who enjoy genuinely screwing with the minds of others for the fun of it (as opposed to simply trolling), jumping to bite the jugular of every recently met person for “gaslighting you” is not a healthy reaction.

Gaslighting is known to have a purpose; there is a clear intention behind it; it’s difficult to associate it with a few words exchanged by people who will most likely never meet again (unless criminal intention is present, as those involved in crime have to act fast). Otherwise, for a person to suspect this intensity or interest from a complete stranger, their ego must be quite inflated.

3. A poor way of making excuses.

Yes, someone might say, for lack of inspiration, “I didn’t say that”,”maybe you heard me wrong” or “that’s not what I meant”, while awkwardly avoiding eye contact. Some people are worse than others at apologising (that takes some balls) or even admitting guilt, or might try to cover for others, protect your feelings by not repeating an insult etc. When caught red handed, they might just say something stupid, such as this never happened. Which is not a laudable thing to do and obviously would trigger people who were actually gaslighted in the past.

Does that automatically make a person  a psychopath? Of course not. If it’s an isolated event, it means nothing at all. If it happens repeatedly, then it is a problem – however, if that’s the only thing to go on, I’d still reflect on it before jumping to conclusions.

4. People who lie compulsively out of anxiety.

The only instance in which I can find a valid excuse for repeated lying is when it comes from people who have developed this as a defence mechanism, after a long time (usually years) of suffering serious consequences whenever things went wrong, they made a mistake or they risked angering/ upsetting someone else. These people lie very naturally to pacify a situation, hiding negative aspects others would have liked to know about. The reaction they get when their lies are uncovered is worse than the one they would’ve received for simply making a mistake. But in a way I can sympathise with the chronic fear of attracting other people’s anger.

In a way it’s comparable to what children do. Since gaslighting is based on control and deviousness, not anxiety, it doesn’t apply here.

5. People who don’t pay attention.

Everyone’s met the type who is a bit self-absorbed and has rosy sunglasses on, meaning they minimise and brush off your sincere concerns as if they didn’t matter (and no, I’m not one for writing this post or any others which deal with these complicated issues).

I’m sure you just imagined it! I’m sure everything’s fine! Everything works out in the end! 

Of course they do it in order to keep things comfortable and keep talking about their own preoccupations, without bothering with yours. I’m not saying these people are worth maintaining a close relationship with or confiding in – obviously not – but that doesn’t mean their attitude is devious and seeks to undermine your confidence. It’s just complacent and ignorant. They also do that to protect their own view of the world, of a family, a community, an institution etc. Basically, it’s all about them, not about invalidating or worse, destroying you.

Most people are not out to abuse others – gaslighting is a cruel, premeditated and sustained  form of abuse, just like psychopathy is a chilling disorder, not to be pinned on every selfish asshole.

Later Edit

Nowadays, every other progressive has been harmed by a narcissist or psychopath, has been the victim of oppression and is suffering from PTSD, requiring trigger warnings whenever they are exposed to unfamiliar information. Next on the agenda, half of them will soon claim they are being  or have been gaslighted (probably more since the straws they cling to are so diverse).

Unfortunately, analyses such as this one are not unnecessary, since misinformation is already spilling out of the poisoned well of the victimhood culture, with feminism at the centre of it. This feminist website (which as a whole is possibly the richest source of unadulterated bullshit I’ve come across so far), seeks to take the false victim complex into the mainstream in every possible way.

This particular article, “10 Things I’ve Learned About Gaslighting As An Abuse Tactic”, is precisely the type of  generalisation I was referring to at the beginning of the blog post.

Far from wanting to invalidate the author’s experience, my honest opinion is that here, gaslighting is presented as a common method of overpowering someone using an emotional bond, by which a person gets another to see things their way, and undermines their confidence as a result, whether they intended to or not. There is nothing in the article to suggest maliciousness or duplicity from the supposed abuser.

Direct quotes are essential (the fair use notice is displayed on the homepage).

1. Gaslighting Doesn’t Have to Be Deliberate

(…)Unfortunately, the first definition I looked up was woefully inadequate. Gaslighting does not require deliberate plotting. Gaslighting only requires a belief that it is acceptable to overwrite another person’s reality.

The rest just happens organically when a person who holds that belief feels threatened. We learn how to control and manipulate each other very naturally.

First of all, the fundamental aspect of defining and identifying gaslighting is the clear intention of causing someone to lose their mental balance and self-confidence, manifesting systematically and in cold blood, inflicting as much harm as possible. It is the method through which pathological types gain control over others, with no remorse whatsoever, sometimes resulting in their victims committing suicide.

Muddying the waters to blur the logical differentiation of this technique from ordinary lying, spontaneous excuse making and even expressing a different perspective is very detrimental, as the real meaning of the word is lost, resulting in an excess of zeal and hysteria wherever this diluted information spreads.

Clear intention, calculation, persistence and cold blood are essential elements to identify in order to make an accurate assessment. Gaslighting must by definition be deliberate.

The author of this piece claims the generally used definition is inaccurate, instead of pondering her own decision to use this specific word. Which is what progressives often do – instead of finding their place in the world, they want to make the entire world adapt to them. With no disrespect to her experience, when a concept does not suit someone, what they do is let go of it and find anther one – or why not, invent it. What they don’t normally do is re-engineer that  concept to suit them specifically, claiming that everyone using it previously was going about it all wrong.

Another red flag is using a situation which is charged with emotions and subjectivity – an argument between romantic partners (which almost by default involves accusations), adding that the “gaslighting” was spontaneous and not deliberate; combined, these aspects become very suspicious. One should consider the following aspects:

  • Whether lies were definitely told, with the partner definitely being aware they were lying; the contentions made may very well be the partner’s honest opinion;
  • Whether the contentions were commonly made or just a one off;
  • Whether the partner simply had an emotional outburst, even if they went a bit overboard;
  • What their composure was and if they seemed to take pleasure in winding up their target (arrogance and delight usually become apparent in these situations).

Of course I’m no expert but this is all just common sense. The key issue is that this technique cannot be identified from an isolated incident or from the mere existence of two conflicting perspectives. Deceit (deliberate, repeated lying) and malicious intentions both have to be involved – lying once in order to cover something up does not count.

“Gaslighting only requires a belief that it is acceptable to overwrite another person’s reality”.  I’ve seen this happen with parents and children, indeed, yet the purpose was shitty excuse making (counting on children’s short memory and volatile perceptions to deny they had done something). Therefore this is an interesting nuance, though more of a cowardly thing to do and not intended to destroy a child’s self-confidence.

You can see it in the media constantly.

For instance, every time an obvious hate crime is portrayed as an isolated case of mental illness, this is gaslighting. The media is saying to you, What you know to be true is not true.

The media does gaslight people all the time, no doubt about it, on behalf of an establishment seeking to confuse them constantly, to the point that they no longer know what is going on around them. Alan Watt gives a good example with the contradictory conclusions of  studies, published from time to time, bamboozling those who read them. For instance, today coffee prolongs your life, tomorrow it gives you cancer, the day after tomorrow it is presented as a miraculous cure for some other disease.

However, the example the author chooses is not relevant, as it claims a presumed hate crime should cause a hysterical reaction and not be treated as an isolated incident. Why presumed? Well, when a person forming part of a minority of any kind is attacked (conservatives excluded), the media, followed by a choir of progressive activists, tends to simply assume that “hate” was involved, even before the actual motive is established. Violence can erupt in a multitude of situations and it is idiotic to simply assume, each and every single time.

But now if you abuse your partner, you’re usually considered to be a bad person. So what do you do, with all the beliefs that would lead you to violence, if violence is no longer an acceptable option?

You use manipulation, and you use gaslighting.

Here it is simply assumed that if these forms of abuse both involve control and a power imbalance, one is a suitable replacement for the other. However, causing someone to fear you is not the same as causing them to think they are insane. Moreover, while gaslighting is premeditated, violence is, more often than not, mindless and momentary. Also, violence is commonly used by the run-of-the-mill asshole, whereas gaslighting is a calculated and sophisticated technique employed by devious minds. Comparing the two implies gaslighting is very common and can be used by just anybody, which in turn implies that the world is full of heartless, devious people (basically psychos), fully capable of this level of evil. And since this is a feminist blog, guess which sex the psychos would predominantly belong to.

A gaslighter doesn’t simply need to be right. They also need for you to believe that they are right.

The whole point is getting their victim to believe a lie – it’s not that they think they are right to begin with; they know full well they are lying. This quote reinforces my initial suspicion that the author ignores this fact, which reduces the technique to someone convincing someone else of their perspective, which the other party (presumed victim) thinks is invalid or which later proves objectively invalid.

The description of the “three stages of gaslighting” is too long to paste here; you can find it by clicking the link above. Yet again, it describes a common argument in a romantic relationship, with no apparent, demonstrable conniving involved. The short version:

1.You argue for hours, without resolution. You argue over things that shouldn’t be up for debate  – your feelings, your opinions, your experience of the world.(…)2. Winning the argument now has one objective :  proving that you’re still good, kind, and worthwhile. (…) 3. You consider their point of view as normal. You start to lose your ability to make your own judgements. You become consumed with understanding them and seeing their perspective. You live with and obsess over every criticism, trying to solve it.

Just a few observations:

  • -One’s feelings and opinions are subjective; they are not absolutes and are always up for debate.
  • -Gaslighting deals with distorting one’s perception of reality, usually by reframing events or conversations, denying them or making them up, aiming to make the other  think they are confused or crazy. Feelings and opinions have nothing to do with this.
  • -The fact that someone eventually convinces their partner of their perspective does not mean that they are deliberately lying – or even mistaking, for that matter, and gives no indication of trying to drive the partner crazy.

By accusing someone of gaslighting you, you are basically accusing them of being a monster. Not every hurtful or difficult relationship involves that and not every insecure, hypersensitive,  overly loving or overly tolerant person drained by arguments is being subjected to an actual form of mind control.

Once again, this is the result of confusing feelings and opinions with actual reality, which opens the door for any argument to be seen as gaslighting, trivialising this notion.

Another article, this time written by a professional, gives three peculiar examples:

  • -A woman is left abruptly at the bus stop by her date (recently met), who prefers the metro and then calls later to justify his strange gesture.
  • -A woman complains to her boss about her assignments and is told she is stressed and sensitive; this keeps happening overtime.
  • -A woman develops anxiety over the fear that she doesn’t care enough about her husband, as he often criticises her for not paying attention to details (such as going to the right store at the right time to get him the right kind of salmon).

Call me crazy, no pun intended, but I do not see any deliberate attempts to make any of these women doubt their sanity. The first case involves a second date and an impatient and tactless prick; it is unclear what he thought he would achieve by dumping her at the bus stop. In the second scenario, the woman is aware of the injustice; she does work harder but nowhere does it say that she feels confused or crazy. And in the third one, she develops this unease because she lets him get away with being so demanding in the first place, taking his shallow reproaches to heart. However, nothing suggests he is being deceptive or that he wants to destroy her self-confidence; he is probably just exploitative and thinks he’ll gain some advantage out of making her feel guilty over trifles.

The list of signs is a long one, describing the targeted person’s feelings. Taken separately, none is a clear indication of being gaslighted, and adjoined, they paint a picture of an unhappy individual in an unhappy relationship, facing anxiety issues and low confidence, possibly depression. And yet there is no mention of actual inconsistencies in this person’s daily reality, of the facts which do not match between their memory and that of their abuser, of this person thinking they might have lost the plot or might be lied to on a constant basis. Someone going through a depression affecting their relationship might apply these filters and end up thinking they are the victim of a deliberate attack on their sanity.

Many comments I read agreed the examples were quite poor; however there were also others, such as this one:

“I recently found the term and its meaning. I was in a relationship (my ex husband) who was a classic gaslighter. I have been divorced from him for almost 20 years. However, a work situation, too bizarre to discuss here, has led to gaslighting on the job more than once, and by extension into the community thanks to ex colleagues. Your description, however, also describes my current relationship with certain family members. I have been feeling that things were not right in the home for some time, and I know this is also an extension of the workplace issue. Very nosy nervy backstabbers. What a great article.”

It becomes apparent that due to such vague criteria, some people end up believing they are being targeted in this manner by multiple individuals (much like others identify “narcs” at every street corner). On a large scale, this leads to a lot of misinformation being circulated.

Silent Treatment – Is It Always That?

As the old proverb goes, all that glitters is not gold, including when it comes to difficulty in relationships.

A few of the behaviours labelled as forms of abuse and signs of psychopathy or narcissism are, in my opinion, ambiguous. Silent treatment is one of them. Whereas it can certainly be used as a form of aggression or control, abuse recovery communities encourage people to generalise, excluding other interpretations.

The reason silence is seen as abuse in romantic relationships is the strong reaction it provokes in the partner, who anxiously awaits communication, seeming lost without his/ her significant other and agonising over what they might be thinking. When complaining, the partner is sometimes referred to as needy and feels insulted; compared to them the presumed abuser seems cold, unemphatic and unloving.

But is this any proof  of foul intentions? Why should one assume these people are even aware of the drama they cause? Who’s to say that instead of being – as portrayed – sadistic monsters grinning beside the phone with a stopwatch, they’re not simply incapable of dealing with the intensity of a situation and need some distance?

Believe it or not, some people are more aloof than others; they need more space, even if that might seem unreasonable.

Even when done for selfish reasons, silence is not necessarily meant to induce a state of despair in the other, to punish them or to control them – in other words to intentionally inflict suffering. Even if someone habitually fails to care about the partner’s feelings, it’s still not the same as causing them deliberately.

To elaborate on that, I would like to make a few points.

1.The partner’s reaction is just as significant as the silence itself, if not more.

If the partner carried on with their own interests in the meantime, focusing on other matters, the situation might be seen as an odd behavioural pattern, yet not abuse. I’m writing from experience here, not out of some desire to engage in victim blaming. When one becomes so  emotionally dependent on another person, to the point of their feelings becoming an unseen burden on that person’s back, it’s not only unfair but also unhealthy. It is not a sign of maturity or balance to be unable to detach mentally from the relationship and turn your attention elsewhere for a while. This strong, disproportionate reaction to someone’s distancing might just be the tip of the iceberg.

2. These patterns (of one ignoring and the other responding with neediness) are likely to be influenced by what both partners have observed in their homes while growing up.

Although the dynamic is sometimes reversed, typically, it is women who feel neglected and men who feel their partners are always dissatisfied with their lack of emotional support. There is a very interesting video by Teal Swan on the perpetuation of these patterns and the Oedipus complex, describing how girls go on to seek the affection of partners who are predisposed to ignoring them and how boys go on to seek caring yet nagging women they end up withdrawing from – and so the cycle continues.

People may develop automatic reactions to certain situations, as a defence mechanism. For example, when someone in front of them raises their voice, the response might be to walk out of the room, regardless of other variables. This might be very frustrating for the partner, who can’t get a point across as things always escalate and end in this manner before any resolution is reached.

3. Poor synchronisation.

It’s fair to say that disappointment is the result of the expectations we have regarding others, whether they have caused us to have them or not. The reason we place such emphasis on trivial matters, like a forgotten anniversary or a trip which never materialised, is the importance we give them, as opposed to their real importance, which might be as small as a grain of sand.

When for instance someone makes an effort to plan a special evening with their partner and instead of it progressing well, the partner is morose and withdraws, causing discontent – if not a fit – the only damage done is to the figment, to the expectation. Nobody owns another person, as to force a certain mood on them and instantly demand reciprocity in their emotional state.

4. Love is about giving. Even space.

When we feel lonely and misunderstood, it can slip our minds that the people we are unhappy with might themselves have serious problems, be very tired or otherwise unavailable. Sometimes, the last thing to help the situation is ceaseless complaining over matters they might not have the energy to deal with. Neediness does make people withdraw more.

If someone is quiet for long periods of time, it can also be due to an issue they are trying to work through, at their own pace.We often come across this statements in popular culture:

If he/she really loved me, whatever issues he/she had, we could work them out together. There’s nothing he/she can’t tell me.

Wrong. Again, nobody owns another person and the need to keep some things private (even take them to the grave) should be respected. There is nothing more annoying and alienating than being prodded by others to speak because of the role they think they must play in your life. People don’t owe others explanations regarding their moods or feelings, if they do not wish to give them. They also do not owe them a mask of jolliness in order to not ”bring them down”.

 

In conclusion, this matter is as complex as it is delicate. One should pause and think very carefully whether another’s actions are really designed to affect them, or are simply an expression of how the other feels at the time.

 

 

Recovery Forums – A Tool Against The Family

For those of us of the opinion that the family as a concept is being pounded on with a battering ram, it’s easy to see how the ever-expanding identification of abuse (especially emotional) is aiding this ”progressive” quest. After years of observing this phenomenon, its role in isolating individuals within society is becoming clear.

Besides the fact that their gains are sometimes financial – for example, forums which charge for membership or sell a lot of improvised material – they are, even if not admittedly, part of the crusade to  elevate one’s transitory feelings to the rank of absolute truths, which is a typical SJW attitude.

Eager to capitalise on grief and confusion, these groups resemble ambulance chasers, mastering the art of convincing people to see victimhood in murky situations, in order to cash in on the profits. 

Akin to talented divorce lawyers, they strongly encourage exaggerating the harm one has experienced through rejection, emotional unavailability, instability, lack of support, criticism etc – thus making it easy for those who are momentarily displeased with a significant other to think they  should consider cutting contact altogether.

A few examples of the fallout of wrongfully identifying a significant other as a sociopath, psychopath or narcissist:

  • People going through a difficult time in a viable relationship or marriage can freak out and give up, to later regret it.
  • Break-ups and divorces can escalate into a huge mess, with children being particularly affected by a parent’s suspicion that their ex  is disordered, which can escalate into hysteria.
  • Parents can end up alienating children from their former spouses, to later realise the mistake, as well as extended family.
  • Adults can disassociate from their parents or siblings due to grievances they’ve kept hidden for years, suddenly convinced they are dealing with something more serious.
  • Teenagers can be – very easily – persuaded that the difficult relationships they have with family members (who often fail to provide emotional support at an optimal level) are in fact abusive.
  • Impressionable young people in general can start seeing disordered types everywhere and have an even more difficult time integrating into society.

To complete the process of isolation, another list of attitudes pushed by these groups as healthy, conducive towards healing.

  • Spending one’s precious energy overanalysing every word, gaze or gesture they receive on a daily basis, in order to identify hidden intentions (and finding oneself accurately described in the DSM as a result).
  • Blaming one’s upbringing almost exclusively for the decisions taken in real time.
  • Demonising any friends who show difficult behaviour and eliminating them from one’s life straight away.
  • Once out of  a romantic relationship, ossifying  selection criteria which make sure one will run scared of most potential partners.
  • Living with a pervasive sense of danger in relation to the outside world.
  • Unearthing mistakes made years ago by others, which are no longer relevant (excluding serious maltreatment which affects a person for life).
  • Identifying as a victimised empath to the point of muddying one’s sense of responsibility in everyday life and absolving oneself of all blame for one’s troubles, regardless of their nature or importance.

This is not only prevalent in romantic relationships, which are the prime target nowadays, our culture inviting people to wallow in dissatisfaction and constantly scrutinise their partners for the smallest clue of wrongdoing. It is reaching far beyond, as many start to analyse their past, sticking labels on those who raised them, in a bid to rid themselves of negative influences. As someone who has partaken in this hysteria, seeing it as a personal quest at the time, I can safely argue it has become a fad, and a dangerous one at that.

There is a positive way of going about changing toxic attitudes one has inherited from previous generations; that is part of self-improvement and a noble goal. The catch is trying, to one’s best ability, to understand those attitudes in their original context, instead of judging previous generations by today’s standards, in  Maoist fashion, eager to write off any wisdom passed on by them. As usual, balance is the key to everything.

People have grievances, from the mundane to long term issues which need addressed. Leaving them to fester in the basement of unacknowledged needs or frustrations can make them seem insurmountable; at times they rise to the surface like an overflowing septic tank, bringing a person into a state of crisis. This is not necessarily, in real time, the fault of those who share their life, though it might feel or appear that way – hence separation is not necessarily a solution to anything.

For abuse recovery communities, knowing just what buttons to push at just the right time is guaranteed to reel in some potential believers.

In this bid, they discourage forgiveness, open-mindedness and empathy, feeding one’s need for validation right away, before even having enough data regarding each case. Evidently, this does a major disfavour to those who are simply mistaking and would benefit from objective advice (though it is difficult to be objective with so little insight, which is why I’m against seeking advice on the internet on such complex, delicate matters). Rage and bitterness are parasites of the mind; they end up consuming their hosts.

No one on the internet is able to understand your exact situation. It’s impossible. Even if you wrote a novel for them to read, you still wouldn’t be able to paint the entire picture – let alone in a few paragraphs posted anonymously.

What they do is look for buzzwords which trigger them and identify with your feelings, without accurately understanding the cause (which might be unknown to you as well). It’s not you inviting them into your reality; it’s them dragging you into theirs.

They start by encouraging you to refer to yourself as a survivor of abuse. This label becomes part of your identity and, depending on how consumed you are by it, it can take over. For those who still post daily about ”their P’s”, some of whom exited the stage years ago, the label ”survivor” has doubtlessly become their identity. How toxic is that? If you were a woman who divorced Bob  five years ago, when asked to introduce yourself, you would not say, ad infinitum,  I’m Bob’s ex-wife or I’m the one Bob stood up at the altar or I’m the one Bob’s mother always hated. It’s the same thing; defining yourself by what you meant to someone else or what that person did to you.

That takes away from your  real identity, from your energy and vitality, not to mention optimism and confidence.

Last but not least, one has to consider that calling a loved one a psychopath or narcissist, especially publicly or over a prolonged period of time, can end up in a permanent rupture, which wouldn’t necessarily happen with other insults or grievances. It’s a very strong statement to make and should not be made lightly, especially at the nudge of an internet community.

The internet might seem like an immediate source of relief and comfort when we are dissatisfied with those closest to us; at times we end up using it in this sense for trivial reasons. It’s far too easy nowadays to air one’s underpants for all to see, only to regret it later. But at the end of the day, it’s those same people we collaborate with day in and day out; when it comes right down to it, we have them and they have us, through thick and thin (genuine cases excluded, of course).

The thought that we can get a balanced perspective on our intimate problems from complete strangers is a mirage, an illusion, as the only ones able to solve them are those who are directly involved.

 

A Link To This Blog On PF

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(Sorry for torturing anyone’s eyes with the font size so far; I had no idea how to enlarge the screen shots.)

A couple of days ago, there was some traffic to this blog coming directly from Psychopath Free. The referrer list shows it started with a PM sent by a long time member and reported by an administrator. A thread was then created on the Meta forum (it can’t be accessed unless one is logged in so it must be there).

https://www.psychopathfree.com/showthread.php?46484-Smitten-Kitten-reported-a-PM-by-ReadyToRun&p=618323

The number of views is very small and chances are the thread itself is hysterical or venomously derogatory. Or no longer exists. If anyone who reads this blog from time to time still has access to their account on PF, perhaps they can tell the rest of us what is going on; that would be much appreciated.

However, I take it as a good sign; there is a (slight) chance the issues brought up here were briefly discussed or at least seen by some of the new arrivals, who still have a chance to hit the road before they disclose too much.

I’m not holding my breath for an open discussion or public explanation for the unfair treatment of hundreds of people (or more), some of whom were unceremoniously booted right after a donation or book purchase.

As it was truthfully put in a comment by a former member, the blog and other similar information on the web will not be enough to “make a dent in that monster”, but it might make a small difference to individuals.

The biggest danger of all is not even the treatment one experiences on the forum or the data which might not ever be of use to the team. It’s the false certainty they give those who take a seat at the McDonald’s of pop psychology, which PF has metastasised into. The over-processed, artificial junk which cannot be customised or altered even by the passing of time. In fact, it’s safe to compare the PF dogma to the famous cheeseburger with fries which looked exactly the same after four or five months – not altered by time or wisdom. It takes some members weeks to snap out of it and realise they are intoxicating themselves, whereas others have been there since the beginning.

The thread mentioned by Stefan in a comment below shows just how little it takes for someone to be targeted. A bit of doubt, not even blatantly expressed, but only hinted at. For that reason alone it’s worth posting the conversation (with no exposure of anyone’s private story, of course). This is so far removed from their corny PR material, which claims they welcome people with open arms.

Nothing this new member posted suggested they were less of a victim of abuse than anyone else on the forum. And yet…

2

@sychokarma, not sure what you are asking for clarity on or, in fact, your question? Would you like to elaborate?

3

@Phoenix Oh just kind of wondering if normal people (e.g. ass***) might also have no guilt or shame when they simply want to get away from you or don’t want to be responsible for things?

4

@sychokarma. IMHO, If you have truly been in a P-type relationship, through education, awareness and resultant knowledge you will be easily recognise and know the difference. 

(I guess the “be” was a simple mistake.)

5

@Phoenix Hmm ok thanks!~ Be well 🙂

6

Totally agree. I have met assholes… but a p… omg! Omg! Omg

Hey @Wildfire, so what is the diff. you felt between the ass*** and psychopath?!

Then you’ve answered your own question

@jordy but what is the diff? Normal people might not feel guilt or shame when they want to avoid headache or responsibility.

7

That’s a very considered response (NOT) and in my book, passive aggressive ending!

8

Non disordered people DO feel guilt and a degree of responsibility, that’s the difference. Are you claiming to have had a relationship with a disordered person because if you are you really should know the difference

@jordy The thing is normal people can feel shame or guilt but due to ego or avoid responsibility, they might pretend not to show it. In that case, how do we know?

That’s a very considered response (NOT) and in my book, passive aggressive ending!

@Phoenix hmm not sure what you mean but sounds like you are happy 🙂

 

9

@Phoenix oh so you have banned him 5 years ago? Good!! Could someone who is normal might also feel no guilt or shame sometimes (just ass***)? Lol

Why are you asking about normal people? Don’t you know how normal people act? And are you suggesting that @Phoenix was possibly talking about  normal person? Lol?

10

I personally feel that any interaction with @sychokarma may well be heading for the META board any time soon as their username, IMHO, says it all for good reason! As in reverse meaning!

11

Sorry folks I am going to be in a meeting. Will get back later!

12

And, do we really need or, want, your apology? Or are we in any way, awaiting your return for some kind of “karma” experience to teach the already converted anything?

13

Sounds like the xP…vanishing in the middle of a discussion, but stating that he was too busy to stay of course. Not okay.

14

Lol, very true, lol

@Phoenix @jordy I find it concerning… There is another topic currently going on also started by a new member about the same issue…

15

If you have any kind of concern about anything on PF, then you have the opportunity of reporting your concern by pressing the black triangle withing that particular post to give and explain your feelings and/ or concerns.

16

Why are you asking about normal people? Don’t you know how normal people act? And are you suggesting that @Phoenix was talking about a normal person? Lol?

@Victoria assholes are also normal people vs psychopath. So i wonder what is the difference between assholes and psychopath?

You don’t. Trust your gut instinct and if your gut is telling you this is one fu#kd up spunk wipe who thinks playing games is the way to do things, you show him the door, close it and never open it again for him

@jordy what is the diff between assholes and psychopath?

Sounds like the xP…vanishing in the middle of a discussion, but stating that he was too busy to stay of course. Not okay.

@Aurelia I actually do have a meeting and now I am back. But who cares, you guys should be shamed of bullying while crying you are psychopath victims.

17

And, do we really need or, want, your apology? Or are we in any way, awaiting your return for some kind of ”karma” experience to tech the already converted anything?

No I don’t apologize but I do need to talk to people I want to talk so I am letting them know I will be back shortly. Hehe

This member didn’t even realise he/she was about to be booted. That’s how quick it was.

Any of those who pretended not to notice the absurdity, as one does when they spot a big pile of dog shit on the pavement and just walk past it pretending the air around it smells like roses, could be next. Any of them.

And before they are, they will consider advice on their deepest issues from these people, which is the saddest thing of all.

Yes, it’s their establishment, they can do what they want with it. Except they advertise it as a life-saving, all-embracing community.

People have the right to have the superficiality and gratuitous capriciousness pointed out before they rush to disclose their childhood rapes, court cases or therapy sessions. They think this so-called community will take them seriously. That is clearly not the case.

LATER EDIT

Akin to other times, a quick peek instantly revealed the latest witch hunt, which can be seen below, as a red flag for those who believe the public image of the website. The recently banned member had given a lot of details (unfortunately) regarding her situation, including legal, all of which were used against her by an admin in the end, in her impromptu psychological evaluation, the admin using words such as “cold” and “lacking empathy”.

All of this, of course, for criticising the website and its lack of seriousness. The member (presumably) had been “supported” by the site until the post below, when they instantaneously turned against her (aside from two  who dared to like the post and probably won’t last long either as a result).

I covered as much as possible of the OP’s personal story; the last post however, by said admin, would not make sense without the quotes left in place. If the banned member ever finds the conversation on this blog and wants it removed, it will be (though I have a feeling she is stronger than the people who posted there put together). So I apologise in advance if this causes any bother.

This case is very relevant to the fact that it is impossible for them to provide “support” for anything but  relationship or family related problems, as what they cannot identify with is irrelevant to them.

new0

All in all: we NED service for:

-victims of psychopath crime. It is a special class, they have over 200% higher chances of better treatment by justice because they manipulate law enforcement agents and I saw how badly prepared these people are

-parents of psychopaths : a mother posted this here. For me, it was the most serious post in this forum. Most people didn’t even pay attention.

-legal advice for psychopaths in the workplace

-education for fraud in business caused by psychopaths

-education for victims’ families: families do not usually understand that targets are not stupid gullible imbeciles. They were targeted by professionals, frequently people who are borderline geniuses. Nobody is immune to them.

Victims of hard-core psychopaths have their whole lives shaken and need help – LEGAL help, financial help etc.

Unlike most of you think, there are no special types of psychopath victims because psychopaths come in all shapes and forms (of behavior). The most damaging are the ones who target the highest prizes. Or the signature killers. But then we don’t need a forum for their victims, do we? They are dead…

The post had followed an infuriating experience with the legal system; one of incompetence and greed; however, they had no empathy at all for her situation.They saw red. Her actual suffering ceased to matter.

new01

I’m confused. When you say “unlike most of you think”, do you mean members of this forum? Or the public, in general?

new2

Uh… well, you see, even your reply shows that these forums are for people who suffer the results o a love relationship with a psychopath. My problem was not love at all.

You see, there so much more related to psychopathy damage… We’re talking about an average of 50 BILLION dollars/year in the USA alone. These crimes destroy lives. It’s not “silent treatment”…

Yeah, yeah… I am resentful: my life and many other lives are totally damaged, we need help, I was asked by my daughter to look for these groups but all I can find is another version of “codependents anonymous”. 

new3

If these forums are for people who suffer the results of a love relationship with a psychopath, then I’ve been in the wrong damn place fr almost two years. I’m here because of a friendship.

So his actions disrupted your life? Guess what? Every person here had their lives DESTROYED by the actions of the psychopaths they knew. You thin you’re the only one left without a past or future? Really? Did you even suffer at the hands of a psychopath? it doesn’t sound like it, based on your words.

You just pissed all over silent treatment, which is one of the worst forms of abuse known to man. You just referred to this site as ”codependents anonymous”. Take your PHD bullshit and piss off. We don’t need crap like that from an “educated” woman.

“Did you even suffer at the hands of a psychopath? It doesn’t sound like it, based on your words.”

Because, according to this member and the admin, as they appear to put it, the only way to <suffer> is to actually have had feelings for said psychopath. It doesn’t matter if they burn your house down, poison your dog, steal your life savings or persecute you at work. If you never had any heartbreak through disappointment, silent treatment, disillusion etc, tough.

“So his actions disrupted your life? Guess what? Every person here had their lives DESTROYED by the actions of the psychopaths they knew.”

By reading between the lines, one sees a clear message of “what happened to us is more serious than what happened to you; your life was disrupted; our lives were destroyed”. Just by the way she is phrasing it, it’s almost like winning a competition. If I’m not mistaking this is the same member who was annoyed at others maintaining their “no contact time” intact although they had slipped and contacted their suspected psychopaths.

“You just pissed all over silent treatment, which is one of the worst forms of abuse known to man.”

I don’t know about others, but if I had to choose between silent treatment and being the victim of actual crime, the choice would be an easy one.

“Take your PHD bullshit and piss off. We don’t need crap like that from an “educated” woman.”

Best suited here would be one of Peace’s quotes describing the loving and respectful atmosphere on PF, where members can safely express their social frustration at someone who simply mentioned having a higher education at some point. Once she has become fair game, everything goes.

Better yet, one of those videos with autumn foliage blowing in the wind and soppy music in the background, describing how angels with broken wings (and no PhD) are welcome to the forum. I’m not trying to make fun of this situation; it’s simply grotesque.

new4

Whether it involves a psychopathic parent, child, sibling, other family member, spouse, romantic partner, or friend, it always involves a ‘love relationship’. But based on your other posts, you wouldn’t understand that, because you admitted you had no empathy.

Correction, she had “admitted” having no empathy towards the psychopath. Was she supposed to? Would it cross the mind of anyone who had just been robbed by an unscrupulous individual?

You’ve only discussed revenge and retribution and aggressive retaliation.

Again – what attitude would you show, let’s say, a hedge fund crook? Would you describe to them your heartache over the betrayed trust ? Would they care? Would you expect them to?

“one thing we share in common is we cared about the people we discovered were/ are psychopaths. Apparently you don’t”

It seems she is implying the lack of said feelings makes the psychopath’s actions less real and their impact less serious. She seems to doubt the member considered suicide at all, as if no one in human history has, based on circumstances which had nothing to do with heartbreak (political persecution, poverty, debt, harassment, a ruined career, to name but a few).

Again and again, this type of damage is reduced by PF to bad break-ups. As mentioned above, unless you sing their praises and fit into the only narrative they can successfully process (so&so broke my heart), they will not even take you seriously. 

Plus – isn’t the goal of their forum to help members achieve emotional detachment from the psychopath, so they can move on? Don’t they reprimand others for still having or showing feelings for their ex partners? But in this situation it’s somehow wrong to show detachment? What are they playing at?

I can only imagine a dialogue between another normal individual and one of these PF types (again, not making fun of the situation, but just to show how bloody ridiculous they are).

“But he never stole your heart!”

“He stole all my savings; is that good enough?”

“But he never gave you the silent treatment!”

“Yes he did; he took off with my money and I never heard from him again. How’s that for silent treatment?”

And so on.

Psychopath Free And The Cringe Factor

Recently, an excerpt from Psychopath Free was added to its Amazon page (quotes are reproduced here from the website, for non-commercial educational purposes, thus qualifying as fair use). Whilst the entire text screams improvisation and if one properly analyses it they can be sure to find more than a dozen logical errors, the worst parts lie below.

To use their terminology of choice, I might as well class this as triggering to former members of the forum, in good humour of course.

poltergeist

As you frantically share your story, you latch on to the quickest and most sympathetic ear—anyone who claims to understand you. The problem is, these people do not always have your best interests at heart.

Those willing to listen to your psychopathic story for hours on end are, unfortunately, not likely to be people who are truly invested in your recovery. They are most likely “vultures.”

Vultures often seem exceptionally kind and warm at first. They want to fix you and absorb your problems. They are fascinated by your struggles. But sooner or later, you will find yourself lost in another nightmare. They begin drowning you in unsolicited advice. They need constant praise and attention. You are never allowed to disagree with them. They feed off drama and an insatiable need to be appreciated by others. (…)

They do not want you to seek help from anyone except them.

Whether these people are pathological or not, you don’t need this toxic garbage after what you’ve been through. (………)

But real friends won’t be acting as your therapist, and they definitely won’t be rambling on about their ability to empathize and care. Their actions should speak louder than their words.

It takes a long time to start building healthier relationships. It takes breaking old habits, forming new ones, developing your intuition, and finally coming to understand what it is that you want from this world.

So be on the lookout for vultures. In the writing world, there’s a universal rule called “show—don’t tell.” This rule also applies to people. If you encounter someone who’s constantly telling you who they are, how much they want to help you, how they will make things right for you, take a step back and look at their actual behavior. Manipulative people are always “telling” because they have nothing good to show. Their inappropriate and dishonest actions never actually match up with their promising words, causing an overwhelming cognitive dissonance in the people who trust them.

You will find that decent, humble human beings aren’t trying to tell you who they are and what they can do for you. They simply show it through consistent love and kindness. You never need to question them, because their intentions are always pure. Vultures, on the other hand, are really acting out of self-interest; they want to be praised and adored. In an argument, a “teller” will frequently remind you of how well they treat you, even after blatantly hurting you. A “show-er” will simply share their point of view without trying to twist the conversation in their favor. Avoid those who tell you how nice they are, how generous they are, how successful they are, how honest they are, and how important they are. Instead, search for the quiet ones who show these qualities every day through their actions.

Truly cringe-worthy.

No explanation is needed for those who have been given the PF treatment and know what really goes on there, openly and behind the scenes.

When referring to “vultures”, he is describing the behaviour of the Psychopath Free team to a tee.  Not only do they claim to empathise with vulnerable people they couldn’t care less about (as shown on countless occasions); they behave as if those strangers owed them for their brainwashing support; they constantly display controlling, egomaniacal and patronising tendencies.

Whilst behaving in that fashion towards one individual is bad enough, they do so to thousands of people, processing members more diligently than fast food chains process battery farm chickens.

I would strongly urge all survivors to avoid seeking out new friendships and relationships for at least a few months. You must get to the point where you no longer need—or want—to talk about your abuser anymore.

When you do need help, stick to professional therapy or recovery communities and services. These people know what you’ve been through, and you’re going to find that all of them are willing to help—with no strings attached.

I understand the temptation to go out and meet new people. You’re looking to start rebuilding your life. You want to surround yourself with kinder and more genuine friends.

Let me get this straight.

He argues there is a fundamental difference between finding new friends in real life and confiding in strangers on-line, which is what people do in these so-called recovery communities. He places these groups on par with seeing an actual therapist. Not that a therapist is necessarily able to help a hurting soul; regardless, they are guaranteed to be more mindful of their behaviour, as to not leave that person in a worse condition than their original one. They are guaranteed to have more ethics than those who risk nothing when bullying or discarding a vulnerable person on the internet.

No strings attached is a funny one. Let’s see if these qualify as “strings”, aka, in my understanding, issues the group can use in order to manipulate someone into obedience.

  • Tracking members on-line as well as in real life, if they see fit, violating their privacy.
  • Bullying and shaming members to influence their decisions in real life, as opposed to merely providing information.
  • Mandating that in order to participate in simple discussions one has to break all contact with the person who has (presumably) been abusing them, although that rule is not specified when registering.
  • Insisting that members give accurate information regarding their relationships and seeing prospective lies or omissions (again, about the private lives of others) as “security threats” to the forum, posed by “imposters”.
  • Labelling others with variations of ASPD, though they usually skip that part and call them psychopaths directly, to refute their arguments.
  • Mocking members’ sensitive stories in kangaroo courts, using vile language, after having expressed “sincere” empathy for them.

Make no mistake; these people are dangerous.

You register under the impression of posting anonymously, only disclosing what you see fit and being able to leave whenever, which is when a normal forum admin or moderator would cease all interaction with you. That was the whole point of being able to open up on the internet.

If you lived outside the US, were temporarily part of a group like PF, and one day posted about feeling extremely low – as people sometimes do in order to blow off steam – you would think that merely closing the window in your browser was the end of it. Well, guess again. They once tracked down a member from a different country and alerted the police regarding a suicide related post, causing substantial trouble in her life and custody case.

Imagine bringing that on yourself just by clicking “post” on a foreign internet forum. Imagine the absurdity.

So when you feel those things after a relationship, does it really matter if your ex was a psychopath, a sociopath, a narcissist, or a garden-variety jerk? The label doesn’t make your feelings any more or less valid. Your feelings are absolutes. They will endure, no matter which word you settle upon.

YES, it does matter.

Psychopathy is a personality disorder. Being a jerk is a behavioural problem, which needn’t be permanent or affect all sides of an individual’s life. It matters even more in terms of discussing your story on forums based on psychopathy, where the constant use of the word psychopath is encouraged.

There I was thinking the whole “identify the psycho” technique was meant to be accurate; that it was crucial for a “survivor” to apply it correctly. Now we see that the label is just fluff and it’s OK to confuse someone who is a bit of a dick with a deranged, dangerous individual. Pick whatever you want; it’s all the same.

And it certainly matters when you place the word “psychopath” on the cover of your book and market it as such, although it now appears it addresses a much wider audience, some cases having nothing to do with psychopathy whatsoever.

And if you are anything like me, we can agree on this simple truth: good people make you feel good and bad people make you feel bad.

Yup. Never heard that one before. Certainly not in George Orwell’s  Animal Farm, when the sheep would go ‘‘Four legs good, two legs bad! Four legs good, two legs bad!” 

This oversimplification is baffling, really.

The fact that the book mentions it doesn’t solely address victims of genuine psychopaths but people who have been hurt in general is very telling; however, those who read it and join PF end up using the words psychopath and narcissist by default.

I might be biased—actually, I definitely am—but I think PsychopathFree.com has one of the coolest healing processes out there. We believe in education, open dialogue, validation, and self-discovery. We have a uniquely inspiring user base, full of resilient values and honest friendships.

I’m not sure whether to laugh or cry. Laughing is generally healthier. The only thing open about the place is the back door, through which they constantly (and abruptly) shove others. Many compare the way one relates to the forum to a toxic relationship; by the time you get doubts and want to confront the establishment or leave, you have too much invested already, as they know your details and intimate story, hence you choose to stay on their good side and not draw attention to yourself.

It’s a funny world, isn’t it? We have doctors who kill for a living and key people in corporations working with governing bodies who are supposed to regulate their practice. And we have people with awful ethics writing books about human interaction.

Here is a real gem:

But first, you’ll need to forget everything you thought you knew about people. Understanding psychopathy requires letting go of your basic emotional instincts. Remember, these are people who prey on forgiveness. They thrive on your need for closure. They manipulate compassion and exploit sympathy.

And they’re surprised people keep comparing them to a cult…

LATER EDIT

After some pondering, I figured posting the conversation I came across accidentally makes sense in order to warn others, with all precautions taken to hide the details of everyone involved (aside from an admin as the way an admin behaves is quite important).

As mentioned in my comment below, a relatively new member questioned the status quo, politely saying he would prefer a quick solution rather than months or years of analysing the difficult relationship. He named the thread ”Our own obsession”. Nothing unusual – unless you’re a devout PF member, reacting to every word with suspicion. Here is what happened next:

PF gang up 2- mod

PF gang up 2- mod

PF gang up 3 - Copy

PF gang up 3 - Copy.1

Still on the good enough side, pretending to try to be helpful, though notice the tone. I covered a few lines giving details of the OP’s personal situation.

PF gang up 7 - Copy

PF gang up 7.1

Notice here the “WE”/ “OUR”, which the OP had been jumped for, is kosher when used by an experienced forum member. Hence while the member felt outraged she was being included into the OP’s “our own obsession”, he should be fine with the “we can be toxic to other people”.

The new member needs to understand the following:

-He has found the ultimate experts in the book and forum. Doubting them is like questioning evolution. He is not on the site to share his views in an equal environment, but to be told what to do.

-The experts know better than he does how long his recovery is supposed to last, even though the human mind is the land of all possibilities.  He has to accept the fact that he’ll be suffering for a year or more; arguing otherwise is like arguing pigs can fly. Imagine the fucking nerve, telling someone what they are supposed to feel and for how long, and discouraging them from trying to recover faster. If anything, this is proof of the concerns from others (that their admin ridicules by calling them “concern trolls”) are valid. They are effectively trying to drill the need to dwell on a bad relationship into people’s heads. They don’t want people to get better as soon as possible.

Still wanting for an apology or acquiescence, the member’s tone changes quickly.

PF gang up 11 - Copy

PF gang up 11 - Copy.1

The member making that accusation also wrote the gems below. How does the term gaslighting even apply to that quote? It’s basically an attempt to find a familiarly-sounding “crime” to pin on the comrade who was undermining the PF revolution with contrary views.

PF gang up 9 - Copy

PF gang up 9 - Copy.1

That about sums it up (the attitude on PF). Notice how polite he was trying to be, while still maintaining his point of view. His politeness was met with disbelief and as a personal attack.

He obviously had  a healthy view on taking one’s life back, meaning stopping the toxic, consuming rumination. Taking one’s life back is impossible without taking one’s mind back. But that’s not allowed on PF; one is never supposed to be better off than the average member, who still ruminates daily. ”I want to get better quickly” is seen as ‘‘ you shouldn’t be ruminating for this length of time”, directed at them, which is visibly a touchy subject since it makes members so angry instantly.

Subsequently, the thread disappeared into the big nowhere.

Like I said, I had just stumbled in there intending to spend no more than a minute, after not visiting the site for weeks.  Who knows how often this actually happens; it’s all erased within hours and members carry on, pretending not to see the nastiness.

Hence… so much for open dialogue, self-discovery and whatever PR speech their admin was giving.

If you register on PF with an open mind and heart, chances are this will happen to you. In fact, it is very common for members to be banned on the first day, after just a few posts.

Note: I am attaching this here to avoid writing yet another blog post about Psychopath Free.

Recently, the interest in speaking out regarding the recovery forum phenomenon has grown, former members seeking to expose it for what it is, namely emotional quackery.

This YouTube video describes it as a mental trap, as many former members have before. The interest in this blog is also growing, judging by the traffic increase, most of it via Facebook (where I don’t have an account so I can’t tell what’s going on). As they spread their propaganda, the importance of shedding some light on matters is significant in environments which constitute rich recruitment pools for them.

I was thinking recently of the amount of information such forums obtain on individuals who are desperate for a friendly ear or for an explanation they cannot realistically obtain from external sources – much like people being approached by quacks in their hour of need, with a miraculous solution for their health problems. This site saved my life, a common expression of gratitude from enthusiastic new members, indicates that some people are literally desperate when they land there.

Today, privacy is a frequently used word, when the reality behind it has almost disappeared. However, one is rarely willing to allow complete strangers full access into their lives, bedroom included.

You have a social life – work, acquaintances, hobbies; people in it only see what you consider safe for the public eye. The you have a private life, populated by family and close friends, who know more about you but not necessarily everything.The rest, you save for those you trust the most.

If you don’t hold back at all it’s normally before a therapist, life coach , a priest you genuinely trust etc. And they all have a few things in common: actual knowledge regarding people, experience with others and most importantly, a policy of confidentiality. Moreover, they have accountability. At least you know who they are.

Think about what you’re giving access to on forums such as PF.

  • Information regarding your family, legal status, children, custody case, other details with legal ramifications.
  • The most problematic relationships in your life.
  • Your current and overall mental health and emotional state.
  • Information regarding your hobbies, habits, preferences, political views, spiritual views etc, down to what you do on a daily basis.
  • Detailed accounts of your most painful memories (all types of abuse), some of which you are most likely revealing for the first time.
  • Detailed accounts of your childhood memories, with an openness to be analysed by others in that sense, to be told how past traumas have affected you.
  • Information regarding your vices, affairs, addictions, phobias and deepest insecurities – which they can use against you later.
  • Information regarding your sex life, past and present.

Basically, all your defences are down. Anything you would normally keep from public view is now in their database. Forever.

On top of that, according to former members with inside knowledge, here is what they can find without your permission, using their forum software, your digital footprint as well as other data you automatically provide when posting:

  • Your Facebook profile (though I’m not sure to what extent) and at least the amount of information which is public by default;
  • Other social media profiles, including on other forums, where you thought you were posting anonymously;
  • Your internet browsing, apparently;
  • Private messages you send to other members.

Obviously, most people would not agree to that invasion of privacy by any group or institution.

But they would agree even less when learning the PF team accesses all this data in order to determine if you are a danger to the forum and potentially a psychopath yourself.  So basically, people who usually clutch at straws to prove others are  “evil” and disordered have full access to who you are, who your family is and maybe even where you work. I wonder what’s wrong with this picture ….

YET ANOTHER EDIT 🙂

Some people might argue psychology and psychiatry are dodgy in terms of credibility, since they rely on speculation instead of measurable data. But there are certain things you’re not likely to ever hear when turning to a professional, this being one of them:pfnewban3 mod

pfnewban3 mod 2

Granted this person seemed annoyed and quite hostile – however, when starting a community for those who are in emotional distress one should expect some members to be hyper-vigilant and have a difficult attitude. Tact is part of the difference between those who have studied human behaviour for a good few years and those who base their expert status on thin air. Whatever the approach of a professional is when hitting a brick wall, so to speak, I bet it’s nothing like the paragraph pasted above, or the one below, addressed to the same new member.

pfnewban4

Not to say that people on forums should put up with any type of attitude; however, the niche they have selected basically implies that some new members will be in a bad place emotionally and even psychologically. So whilst no one is obligated to show endless patience, it surely doesn’t help for them to be called nasty, horrible and vile (the OP ended up with a couple of those labels after being banned), following only a short exchange of replies. The hostility they perceive from the world at large must increase dramatically.

The team shows no worries at all about the high potential of attracting people who are in a troubled state to the forum, to be swiftly booted; they don’t seem to wonder what can happen as a result.

Also, one is expected not only to have the perfect composure at all times, but to give advice to others (their self-involvement being a red flag according to their main admin), unless they have fallen out of grace by breaking “no contact”, which is when they are unworthy, as they are – try not to spill your coffee when reading this – “projecting a false image that is affecting other members”. I wonder who is really projecting here…

no contact pf- edited

no contact pf- edited2

That, by the way, was in response to members complaining that others were allowed to keep their “no contact” time intact although they had resumed contact at some point. The mere fact that they feel righteous indignation regarding other people’s lives and want others to be “stripped of their badge”, so to speak, says a lot about what they’re really doing there in the first place.

Examples could go on an on, but surely these are enough to provide a glimpse into the overall atmosphere unsuspecting people find there.

And in case some members or staff members ever wonder what gives me the right to post these screen shots here and comment on them, well, it’s the same “entity” or concept giving them the right to hold other people’s information captive, to hunt for thought crimes in their history and hold witch trials for all to see, indulging freely in all types of language and speculation. If they can do it, so can others.