The Manipulator's 6 Steps to Idealization30/07/2014 01:29
This will be the first in a series of ongoing efforts to get each chapter from the PF Book posted as an article..
While all of this is going on in your heart, their thoughts are occupied by something else entirely: “Good. It’s working.”
Psychopaths never truly feel the things they display. They’re observing you, mirroring your every emotion and pretending to ride this high with you.
Because the higher you rise, the lower you’ll fall.
Idealization is the first step in the psychopath’s grooming process. Also known as love-bombing, it quickly breaks down your guard, unlocks your heart, and modifies your brain chemicals to become addicted to the pleasure centers firing away. The excessive flattery and compliments play on your deepest vanities and insecurities—qualities you likely don’t even know you possess.
They will feed you constant praise & attention through your phone, Facebook timeline, and email inbox. Within a matter of weeks, the two of you will have your own set of inside jokes, pet names, and cute songs. Looking back, you see how insane the whole thing was. But when you’re in the middle of it, you can’t even imagine life without them.
So how did they do it?
Aside from gifts and poems, the psychopath uses a variety of brainwashing techniques to win you over. They will emphasize six major points during the idealize process:
1. We have so much in common
We see the world the same way. We have the same sense of humor. We’re both so empathetic, constantly helping out our friends & family members. We are perfect for each other.
The psychopath repeatedly drills these points home, often times even going so far as to say: “we’re practically the same person.” They spend most of the idealize phase listening to you and excitingly responding that they feel the same way. You will eventually come to think that they’re the only person you’ll ever meet who’s so similar to you. And you’re right. Because it is flat-out impossible (and creepy) for two people to be identical in every way.
Normal people have differences. It’s what makes life interesting. But psychopaths can skip this complication because they don’t have an identity. They do not have a sense of self. They don’t have life experiences that shape their needs, insecurities, and fantasies. Instead, they steal yours. Like a chameleon, they will transform every part of their personality to become your perfect match.
2. We have the same hopes and dreams
The psychopath will consume your present life, but they will also take over your future. In order to raise the stakes in the relationship, they will make many long-term promises. This ensures that you are highly invested in the relationship. After all, who wants to stick around for a romance that has no potential future?
The psychopath takes this a step further, quickly discussing major life events like marriage and moving in together. These are decisions that typically take years in a healthy relationship. But you don’t need all that time. You already know you’ll be spending the rest of your life with them. If you’ve always dreamed of a family and kids, they will fit that role perfectly. If you want to start a business, they will be your right-hand man/woman. If you’re in an unhappy marriage, they will have a plan ready to replace your spouse. You will notice that these plans always seem to involve some sort of sacrifice on your end—never theirs.
3. We share the same insecurities
They will never actually say this, of course. But psychopaths can sniff out vulnerabilities in a second. They will mirror your insecurities to drive up your sympathy—so that you attempt to heal their problems with the same care you might hope to receive yourself.
Empathetic people are not attracted to blatant butt-kissing and over confidence. You’re attracted to the innocent, sympathetic person. This increases exponentially when you also recognize their insecurities as your own. You see someone feeling inferior, and you believe that you know how to make them feel better.
The psychopath is like no one else, because they genuinely seem to adore all of your efforts. They compares you to past exes, idealizing you above everyone else. It’s as if all of your energies finally have a purpose, after likely being frustrated with the unending, not-so-appreciative complaints of others.
If you perceive the psychopath in a sympathetic light, your natural instincts kick in, and you do everything you can to prove how much you care. Psychopaths see insecurities in a very different way—a tool for manipulation and control. Their childlike “baby” routine is a perfect way to mask these intentions.
4. You are beautiful
Psychopaths are obsessed with the way you look. You will never meet another human being who comments so frequently on your clothes, your hair, your skin, your pictures, or whatever other superficial quality they choose to focus on that day. At first, these feel like compliments. They can’t believe how beautiful or handsome you are—they don’t even feel worthy of being your partner. They walk around the park and can’t find a person more attractive than you (how this is a compliment, I’m not quite sure).
Going along with the above point about insecurities, you begin to return all of this flattery. You want to make sure they feel adequate—that they understand how attractive you think they are. And that’s what they’re aiming for. By showering you with compliments, they know they can expect the adoration to rebound shortly. Suddenly, they become very comfortable sharing photos of themselves with you. Your relationship becomes an unending exchange of praise and approval.
You begin to place your self-esteem into their words, because they are so reliably positive. You can actually feel yourself glowing. Your body goes through changes as your confidence rises with their every word. You spend more and more time improving your appearance to keep them impressed.
5. I’ve never felt this way in my life
This is where the comparisons begin. They hold you in high regard, far above all of their other relationships. They explain—in detail—every one of the reasons you are better than their exes. They can’t remember the last time they’ve been this happy.
You will constantly hear sweeping declarations like, “I can’t believe how lucky I am.” Statements like these play on your innate desire to make others happy. They convince you that you’re providing them with a special sort of joy, something that they cannot find in anyone else. This becomes a point of pride for you—knowing that you are the one they want, despite all of their other admirers.
The psychopath will refer to you as “perfect” and “flawless”, which becomes an overwhelming source of cognitive dissonance when the words inevitably change to “crazy” and “jealous”. As you work through these memories, remember that their compliments were always shallow and calculated. They do it with everyone. For each target, the idealize phase will be different. However, one thing remains true throughout each relationship: they really have “never felt this way” in their life. Psychopaths do not actually feel the love and happiness that they so frequently proclaim. They oscillate between contempt, envy, and boredom. Nothing more.
6. We are soul mates
Psychopaths love the idea of soul mates. It implies something different than love. It says that there are higher powers at work. That you are meant to be together. It means that they consume your entire being—mind and body alike. It creates a psychic bond that lasts long after the relationship has ended.
Perhaps there is a small part in all of us that longs for a soul mate. The perfect person to complete our lives. Someone with whom we can share everything—a lover and a best friend.
And there is nothing wrong with that. I cannot stress this point enough. Psychopaths will manipulate your dreams and fantasies, but that does not make them weaknesses. After being discarded by a psychopath, many survivors denounce everything about their past life, raising a permanent guard to protect themselves from more abuse.
Please don’t do this.
If you believe in soul mates, you will find a real one. You will meet a man or woman who is full of gentle compassion & kindness. You will never question your heart because of them. Your love will blossom on its own, without all of the manufactured intensity. The psychopath was not your soul mate, and they never will be. To be your soul mate, they would—of course—need to have a soul.