Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Is Mr Hyde A Fake?

True Self/False Self Revisited

Posted by Stychia, Assistant Manager 01/22/04

Stych has joked, "The Inflated False Self is neither inflated, nor false, nor a self.....discuss". I think she makes a very salient point. This post reassesses a common assumption in groups on the internet, among others- that Mr. Hyde, not Dr Jekyll, is real. Stych smashes that false idol and engenders a huge paradigm shift in the way we orient ourselves to the character disordered, especially narcissists. As for psychopaths- I think that remains a separate question at this point in time. Even Cleckley could only speculate ~Invicta

I remember when I first realized my husband's behavior was disturbing, and started reading up on personality disorders, I was very concerned about the Jekyll and Hyde nature of his personality- the super nice guy who made me feel like a princess, and the manipulative, out of control, devaluing, vile-tempered, self-absorbed jerk. I thought the True Self was the Nice Guy, and the False Self was the Bad Guy.

This is wrong. Nice Guy and Bad Guy are both part of the False Self.

The False Self has a critical mission - to have power over others (specifically you.) The False Self doesn't care if this power is in the form of you adoring it or fearing and hating it. If it can make you dance, it feels good. They are in control, and that's primarily what narcissism is all about.

The True Self is that pathetic little orphan, locked away in a tomb of deep, paralysing pain.

So take this carefully into account, all ye who are anxiously awaiting the wonderful day your N sees the light, sheds the False Self and all of its primitive defense mechanisms - there ain't nothing there. They are empty vessels.

Many try to fill it up with things like food, drink, drugs, sex, the finest material possessions money can buy, enmeshed relationships with others - but it doesn't work. They are like black holes, emotionally.

The Bad Guy isn't real, the Nice Guy isn't real, all there is underneath the pretense is a helpless little critter that hasn't a clue about anything.

Then you have to decide if that's what you really want.

Peace to all of you, my friends-

© Stychia-msn 2004-2010. Reproduction, even in part, by permission only


minka said...

Very well said and spot on, in my opinion.

Heed this blog's advice, and also remember: what you are going through/went through with your narcissist is NOT your fault. This is the way they are built, unfortunately for those of us who have had the misfortune of getting involved with one...

Anonymous said...

Thanks for posting this. Just discovered your site; recently separated from my narcissistic/depressed husband, and not sure what the future holds.

I also have a masters in psychology which did not help me avoid a narcissist. It is comforting to know that I am not the only one, and the insights offered here are very useful. Thank you.

Dee said...

Hi, been reading up on Ns cause I think my ex is one. I have so many questions. The one I've yet to see discussed out of hundreds of sites on Ns is this... is there no hope for them? No redemptive qualities or are they just very bad folks that can't change because they really do lack the capacity to love, feel real emotions or empathise with others? And if that's the case, then isn't that pitiable? I would hate to be like them. If they can't help it then can we really hold them accountable? Hey I'm all for getting away from this fire. Being burnt by someone hurts whether or not it's intentional. And the scars they leave are permenant. I'd like to know, are you saying that this is say your child with narcissism that they are just hopelessly evil? Do you just say "oh well, they are narcissist and we must accept this and watchout"!

Anonymous said...

What is it about a 'self' that is real to begin with?

The past is illusion, and to operate 'from' the past is to be a false self. Operating out of the past - trying to save it, fix it, salvage something, prove something, qualify yourself or someone, be clever, be funny, be impressive, defend oneself, devalue someone else, be really nice to someone else, etc.

We do these things because we are afraid. It makes us contingent, on the past, on some externality.

Blame, fame, shame, etc.

Even to try to pinpoint it or analyze the 'flaw' won't help because it has no substance: it is best understood as a simple refusal to unhide. The nature of the mask is immaterial and analysing him will only complicate the imposter, who will only end up reinforcing his perceived lack of essential goodness with new strategies for 'obtaining' goodness.

The reality is that self-image is an illusion and we are essentially good (just like life is good), and we are who we really are when we love, and when we are afraid we hide that love behind imaginary memories.

Be wary of those who think it's more complicated than that.

Anonymous said...

I have recently discovered that my fiance has narcissistic tendancies and this post saddens me deeply.

Stychia writes "The True Self is that pathetic little orphan, locked away in a tomb of deep, paralysing pain."

Later she calls them 'empty vessels' and then at the end 'they are like black holes' 'a helpless little critter that hasn't a clue about anything'.

There is a huge difference between 'a pathetic little orphan entombed in paralysing pain' and 'a helpless, empty, little critter that hasn't a clue'.

The first description is empathic and caring, the second is heartless.

I believe the first is more accurate and although in the end I may choose not to marry my fiance, and I know he may never break free of his tomb, I will do whatever is within my power to ease his deep paralying pain.

How can anyone say they love another human being and then abandon them to a living hell?

Anonymous said...

To the poster above...go somehwere else to judge people have been so loving that they were ripped into shreds by the devil. Just for your info, women who love these monsters score in the 99th percentile in both empathy&tolerance. I was raised by one and thus trained to be nothing more than food for these f'ing monsters. I was not allowed to have a single feeling, need, be sick, cry, mourn lost loved ones, celebrate accomplishments. They do not allow others the right to even exist other than to serve them. This means that they will encourage you to blow your head off if in that moment it fills their void by creating some exciting drama. They will rape their own child if they feel like it&then say the child enjoyed it, asked for it, etc. with ZERO care for anyone else EVER! So go ahead and marry him. Have a couple kids with him. When you begin watching him destroy your precious, innocent children for his entertainment then come back here and let me know if your feelings have changed about us victims who are so very lucky to have gotten out with a morsel of our soul left. Countless others die or commit suicide because of these demons. Narcs RARELY kill themselves, but it's quite the norm that their victims do. Now, tell me whose hell is worse?

Anonymous said...

I just had a relationship-ending fight with my N last night, and hopefully the last - I kept pleading he be honest and a human being - I think he does not have the capacity for it. Being a fake - yes - maybe - maybe it is just a lost cause for some people because the amount of self work it would take for a N to change is enormous, and when they don't even think they need to change, then it is even worse. It's a cut your losses situation - I just wish I did not waste 5 years of my life to find it out - I too had a father who was a N - I did not have one in my first husband, but this man I just broke up with - he was my father, and my sick, twisted doll that I believed would change, and even though everyone around me said run, I thought I could handle it. The weirdest thing now that I remember saying to myself (and I am not a dramatic person), was that when we were going out about 8 months, something inside said he is filled with the devil - a friend met him, and said the same thing. I didn';t listen - I was a glutten for punishment but didn't know it - I couldn't see it til recently - I was so afraid of being alone, I just kept putting up with it - being alone without the devil opens up my life to a whole new world of good - I will not be taken down by Mr. Hyde.

Anonymous said...

I too have just recently gotten out of a relationship with a person I now suspect is an N. At first I was not sure what was going on and I did suspect a mental disorder or something. His lies and manipulation were unreal and he was trying to keep me away from my family and friends. I thought he was doing that later on because he felt he couldn't 'snow' about 50 members of my close-knit family! I am so thankful I followed my 'gut instinct', something I have ignored in the past and regretted it. I had abuse in the past from other relationships so I am probably not as emotionally stable as the average person, but I have done counseling and feel that when I have my gut churning there is something NOT right. Only a few days ago did I issue the "no contact" rule and of course he reacted with a horrible display of hatred toward me. I felt like such a loser when I heard all of that, but then almost immediately I think God stepped in. I got on the computer and actually did a search for "evil in the guise of good" and I started finding research articles and blogs on narcissism. When I started to read the behavior characteristics I just knew that was 'my' guy! I also run pretty high on the 'prime candidate' scale so I guess I am the perfect 'patsy' for this type of person. I am so relieved that I only spent about 9 months on this guy. I pray that he is out of my life right now. If he tries to contact me, etc. should I go to the police and try to get a harassment charge, or an order of protection? I just wondered if that would 'flame' the fire. Thanks for providing info here. Thank goodness I am not the only one who has gotten trapped, but so good to get away and know that I am not the 'crazy' one. I know he cannot help it. And I do know some of the events of is early life is true so there was some abuse in his life as well, but I have read enough now to know I cannot help him or change him. The best thing is to get away and just pray he will be 'healed' if that is even possible. Thanks again for this site and all those who have told their story.

Anonymous said...

After reading Anonymous May 9, you were raised by one Narcissist parent I was raised by two, both of them. You're right, I wasn't allowed to even mourn the death of my 4 year old daughter, N parents have never said a thing to me, no acknowledgement about anything, stopped me from excelling in anything, interferred in my relationships, shattered them, shattered me in every way, not allowed to feel any emotion or grief or need anything, as a daughter of 2 N's I am not allowed anything. Brought up as an extension of them and what they need their wants etc never my own. I was never allowed to need anything. Neglect all the way.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous from Europe :-)


Hi Everyone,

I am in the midst of leaving a Narcisst and it is the weirdest seperation ever!
As you can see I am also searching for Information to explain to myself what the hell is going on!

Here are the facts:
Him Police officer, seperated paying for his child
Me more than knowledgeable of the human soul and Brain und utterly ashamed that THIS happened to me. BUT as a previous post said: When my gut is churning there is something NOT right! So true! Ladies listen to your instincts.
Relationship on-off four time, always HIM coming back, complete duration 2 years with breaks, intensive for nine months.

I can only nod to all I read. Yes he too made me feel like a princess. HE went after me like crazy, which is nice. I think the fatal attraction lies in the pursuit a N can set loose, when he wants something, which is you/us. It is soooo nice to be really pursued. His seeking for control over us, which we find out later and which feels sooo bad is in the beginning really charming. A man who acts manly, aggressive, gets things done exudes power. Great! It made me swoon. I was in love. And then the other side. His sooo bad ex-wife. And no he wasn´t at fault he was/is the good guy. I fell for it.
I was like one of the posters described women who wanted to be a good human who wanted to help him overcome his terrible ragged soul, which i coul clearly sense under all of his I am the best Cop macho behaviour.
As long as I catered to his every need all was fine. But I also made some of my relationship goals very clear right at the beginning. And as I could see that he didn`t keep his promises and was clearly not coming my way in critical points i confronted him.
And another YES He didnt acknowldege my feelings, he didnt show any concern, he didnt acknowldege that he let me down. He said he understands may feelings, but as -i later recognized he used a lot of police phrases for deescaltion on me. He always said, later whe talk, when you have calmed down but the talk never came etc.

So then it dawned on me he will NEVER come my way, it is only about him, he doesnt care and he never makes a mistake and he didnt invest either emotionally or money wise in our relationship. I cooked, I washed, i entertained his child on the weekends, i understood AND Thank GOD! I had a coach!!!! I started and furthered my own process and came clear with my own childhood. It cost me money but it was sooo worth it. The day I had processed and integrated tha last morsel of my own Pattern I felt emotionally free from him. I no longer needed him for "false" protection. I felt my own strength and put down a foot. Very softly I cut down on pampering him. I asked him to go shopping, to prepare supper, to hang up the laundry etc. I started to stop beeing his servant. He always put work first and my services enabled him to put all his energy into his career. but he didnt share the payoff all the money went to his exwife, child and then he started buying things for his pleasure not for our pleasure he didnt invest in our future he went strictly his way. And always patted me and called me pet names in an effort to calm me down like you would pat an animal, when it was a "good dog" pat pat.
So when he realized that it was getting uncomfortable he pulled back, said he needed time to think, bla bla.

Anonymous said...


I was so composed because i felt my strength i knew that if he wouldnt leave then i would, but i wnated him to make decision so it wouldnt be my "fault". He started moving out under my nose, removing things and clothes from my appartment and not telling me about it, but as i am trained in certain thing i started to use my profeesional mode and saw clearly what he was pulling off.

Now the weird part started:
If you have the feeling he wants to control you: Get out or get professional legal and mental help!

I made him admit that he wanted to break up. I made him a scene just for the effect, but i wasnt deeply hurt i felt FREE! But i wanted to see if he realized that he hurt me. Take a wild guess: NO.
I then wanted to have my things back and i wanted to give him his back. and then the power struggle kickesd in. He alway postponed made dates to exchange things. He didnt pick up his belongings. I had his friend pick up his stuff and bringt it to him. Which his friend did and he cleared the picture of the marriage. His ex wife had the same complaints as I had. She was not a bad mean woman. He didnt take responsibility in his marriage etc. I was so relieved that it was not me.
He then did not come around to give me my things.
The good thing is with an N you can push his buttons. I pushed the button and threatened him I would go to his police station and get my key. He bolted and got it. One hour later it was in my letter box. He was in rage that i threatened to put him down in front of his colleagues whi i hadnt. I said i woul get my keys :-).
Then I shad my neighbour put his cat tree outside the house. And a miracle, he picked it up within five minutes!
And when I threatened him with legal action to get my things back, there is a paragraph for this kind of thing, he was oh miracle, able to send it by mail.
Now I made him see that I have rights and that I defend them and that I defend my dignity and That he is NOT the center of the universe. It feels awesome!
I am not willing to let myself be controlled!
If cooperation is not possible.
Warning: You have to have good energy to pull this off. I am in a very good state, which i was not as i met him.

Note: Normal Relationship rules don’t apply to this kind of partner. You are not “investing” in your future together you are exhausting yourself and getting taken advantage off. This can result in severe depression and suicide. DON’T GO THERE! Trust your instincts and feelings and your friends and family. But sometimes they cannot see his bad side because he charms the pants off everyone and is such a good catch! Read the beginning, why we fall for him in the first place.
And YES attractive women at risk, because you have things he wants!!! Beauty, Brains, Character etc. he would like to shine your light on him, but he doesn’t want to pay the energy bill ;-) Boy I like this metaphor.

Good luck to you all and i will come back to read other posts.

Anonymous said...

It gets even better :-)
Anonymous from Europe

Yesterday I walked into a "friend" of his, a mother of a boy his child plays with. And she met a friend of mine and heard my version of the story and really likes me. And also has been through a similar thing. And she told me what lies he tells about that we separated in a friendly way and how he tells he needs time for himself, but I told her he has a new woman, which he to me he also doesn´t admit to. BUT I heard him and her talk, when he did not notice that his cell phone had answered without him realising. There is a GOD:-).
He tries to convince everybody what a nice guy he is, but his wor(l)d is starting to crumble and I can sit back with the girls and watch:-).

Ahem, yes. I must admit openly, I have my reiss-profile and I score freakingly high on the dimensions "revenge"and "competition" so if somebody really, really pesters me and really wants to be put in his place, I am the woman to count on. But I always said so, just when I was not well in the beginning I could not stand up for myself, I needed someone but was taken advantage of.

As invicta says: Know your values! I stand for truth and love. Love can also mean to be "mean" like loving parents will not allow their child just any fit and temper tantrum. Try to see it like that.

I also started to think healthy: I am worth ist, I count, I may have wishes, I may ask to have help, I do not have to put my needs behind my partners at any cost, I do not have to understand everything etc. and I can take care of myself and there are good men out there and I will have a good partner.I am allowed to be mad I am allowed to fight

Good tip:
Get to a gym. Strenghten your body it then can give your soul some hold. Being strong makes you feel powerful, makes you think better of yourself. Nurture yourself, eat good quality food, nurture your soul with good friends, good movies. I like legally blond part I. Reese really kicks ass :-) I had myself brainwhshed with taht movie. I let it run for hours. It has good energizing music and she wins :-).

I have a new guy who wants to date me.
So use that energy and the awesome feeling of beeing free and having survived! We have to accept that there is evil in this world, but we are NOT willing to be put down. Stand up for yourself, as soon as you can or get help to stand up BUT DO SOMETHING! Only Doing something will make you recover.

Good luck and please write what helped you! I will keep coming back!

Anonymous UK said...

I don't know if this blog is still live, but thank you very much for these resources. I have found them helpful.

It has been ten years since I was messed up by a messed up individual (who certainly has a lot of the characteristics of narcissism). I have been celibate and tormented by it ever since and I still feel that I am a broken person. I am not really sure what to do now, as it looks like there is a serious possibility that I will never recover.

I am struggling with the "pathetic orphan" metaphor, although I'm sure the idea is on the right track. I was wondering if it is possible to explain it in another way? The thing is - I myself often feel a bit like a pathetic, vulnerable orphan. But I'm not like him, and that isn't what you mean, I don't think.

I don't know what it means to say that there is a 'real self' under it all. Clearly what I saw was false, because it was riddled with contradictions. But where is this vulnerable self located? How does it interact with the false self that I saw? Does it think? Does it feel? To what extent does it control his speech and make his decisions?

I think that describing something in the right metaphors is the key to getting it into yourself emotionally as well as just intellectually. Metaphors speak the language of the soul.

If anyone has any suggestions for alternative metaphors for this, that might be helpful to me. Thanks.

Cromwell said...

Thank God you are here. my soon to be ex is described here to the T. I feel used, abused, hurt, all the same things you say, but beware men and women out there. He will use your weakness against you and convince you that he will assist way, he does it on "his" terms. The game plaing is so bad, that I felt so afraid to go anywhere. The last straw is he taught our son, through his negative treatment of me, how to "deal" with mom.

It is simply unacceptable to disrespect women, and I pray that in time, my boy will become, more positive, in touch with his true self, be in love with God first! I had an "N " dad and a "God fearing" mom who felt it was her duty, carrying her cross, for my Dad, who made her work herself to the bone, she died young, from pancreatic cancer 17 yrs ago. A power/dominance relationship, my Dad and husband act the same, I never wanted to marry someone like my Dad, but I did, except the man I married, did not communicate, it doesn't matter if they do or not anymore, since it lacks any true reciprocal emotion.

My Dad, my brother, my paternal grandfather, my husband, my inlays, all toxic, all learned abusive behavior. I pray each day, for nothing is impossible to the God who created us, to heal those affected by toxic people, that we go on to lead healthy lives and learn not to allow our hearts to be "suckered" in my little selfish demons, who only seek to devour and destroy your being. I look forward to reading any posts, information.

For finally after 1/2century, I can finally see a glimmer of light!

Anonymous said...

Just wanted to leave a note for all those out there. Please let my experience serve as a warning. You MUST get out NOW. Make the decision, but don't actually do it rashly. Plan it. Make sure you have enough money, social contact (victim support if you are isolated). Have a POA - a plan of action prepared for when you have left. Don't let on that anything has changed, but walk away from any sign of confrontation. You can NEVER come out on top in an 'argument', they control you the moment you respond. Just walk away. Get out and away to reflect and reinforce where you are. My personal POA in retrospect would be to contact the police, let them know what is happening, have it in writing. My ex used the police against me in the end, turned the whole thing round. If you live in the same house then leave if you have to, or get the police on side and change the locks. Have a solicitor draw up a letter stating that there is to be NO CONTACT. I swear to you, the pain that these people can bring is unbelievable. They can manipulate the full weight of the law and justice system down on you with lies. You MUST protect yourself. Do not think they will not do it. They will ruin your health, they will steal from you, they are almost certainly already cheating on you, and they will tell nothing but lies. They are a lie. Full stop. Detach from any feelings, they have none for you and never did. Deal with that later, now, save yourselves. Good luck to you all.

Anonymous said...


you abandoned one
all alone
and hating
scared to death
of death
of any danger
and scar
you know it would kill you
and longing
ghost trying to come back to Earth
but you don't exist anymore
you killed yourself
and felt relief
now that horror haunts you
that's why you can not find a peace
that's why you're haunting people while they sleep
scared to death
it will happen again

you're immortal now
as you always whished
though not at all alive
that's why you suck their blood
you can't touch yourself
hence you try to catch your reflection
in every mirror you pass by
it's only you you you
no one else around
you can see them all
but they're from another world
the world you left
now it's just you
and you will fight like a lion to stay here
if just all the others could join you too
you try to catch their eye
you play drama
throw the things
they are all amazed and wondering
yet they can not see you
looking for you
can not find you
you remain alone
screaming to the night
scaring them while they dream
you play theater again and again
furniture spinning in the room
they're clapping
you're hoping
but you couldn't catch their eye
and all their attempt to describe you failed
you're alone again
not satisfied at all
but you found your way
you moved to the empty house
where no one ever comes
and if so
the haunted house wails, crackles and mourns

they will never see you
you already know
well you hate them in return
you scare them to death
and whisper "can you see me now? see how I feel?"
so they call the priest
they bring cross and garlic and silver
they call your name
they call "show up. come here.
tell us where your body lies.
we'll help you find a rest.
we'll lead you to yourself."
that hurts like hell
that scares and stings
that murder you sworn to forget
you scream and wail and ruin the house
and if you didn't bury them
they ran away

you abandoned one
you left yourself
you left your body there
dead corp in our world
and you felt relief
you can't look into your eyes now
you see that silent painful question there
you hate those eyes
the murder you sworn to forget


Anonymous said...


you tried hard to catch my eye
you juggled with plates and I laughed
you whispered when I dreamed
and I spent nights seeking you
but I heard your body cry
I looked through you
and ran to your body
kissed your lips
and listened to your breath
I fell in love
and held your hand
I would swear it was warm still
I screamed
"where are you? please come back.
who did it to you?"
but you heard me
you rolled in in a rush
pulled me off
and beat me to the blood
"I am here. He is dead."
the murder you sworn to forget
I looked in to your dead eyes
I saw the horror you try to disguise
and noticed you right then
you dropped the plates
shards remain
"here you are" I whispered,
"he's waiting for you,
give him life back"
I begged
you put a mask upon your face
and turned away
then you slapped my face
"why you don't love me but him?"
the murder you sworn to forget


I loved you
you didn't want me to
you dragged me into your haunted house
juggled with plates to make me laugh
but I couldn't even smile
you screamed and mourned
then whispered while I dreamed
"there's a body in the street
so pretty and sweet...
there's a body in the street
dead and cold..."

I loved you
you didn't want me to
and I don't belong here in this haunted house
I'm from another world
the one you decided to leave
now I'm leaving for the streets where you body lies
cause you don't exist
but there's a body in the street
so pretty and sweet
that I'll hold tight for one more time
to let him know he was loved
but he's not waiting for my kiss
my kiss will never wake him up
if you don't kiss him first
and to honour all he is
I'll love him in another man

the murder you sworn to forget

Diana Colvin said...

You are absolutely right! Thnx

Diana Colvin said...

I do understand where you are coming from. I too thought the same way as you do, but you nor I can change them. They need professional help, unfortunately most narccicists wont even admit to being one which I think is the first step to healing. We have to live our own lives the best way we can to be happy. In my short experience with my narccicistic husband, I see so many changes in myself already and I've been so unhappy!!! I've lost my lids respect, my family and friends, also my pastor and church!! This is because of my husband!! He hasmade our private life known to everyone. Always getting their favor somehow and turning everyone against me!! I can't believe that people judge me but they do. Talk later if you want.

Diana Colvin said...

I agree!! They are demon possessed!! Only God is able to free them!! God bless you. The Bible (gods word) teaches us that we battle not against flesh and blood but against powers of darkness (demons) God bless Romans 10:13

Diana Colvin said...

Great attitude and good for you!!

Diana Colvin said...

I have walked in your shoes most of us have. What has worked for us all was to her away from the narccicist angst get saved and lean on the saviour the lord Jesus Christ. He cares and he changes lives!! That's a great promise!!!

Anonymous said...

If you identify your "partner" as having the behavior of a narcissist, plan to get out now. Do not waste one bit of energy trying to figure out why. Do not try to psychoanalyze and diagnose them and present them with your findings. Keep your discoveries to yourself and use it as a sort of armor to protect yourself. You may think that your efforts to show him who and what he is and how his ways may actually being negatively effecting his life but your efforts will be turned against you in the worst ways. You will now unearth and awaken a force that will be nothing but pure evil and you will surely pay. Use your energy on yourself and work to get out and away. You wannna save the world and do good, don't waste your time with a narcissist, go volunteer with people who really need your help and who won't try to destroy you in the process,

Anonymous said...

It's been a hard 6 months!! I knew about the person I was dealing with... I found out that my now N ex had these traits, per my therapist about 2 years ago. I was in denial and now after he cheated, lied and left our daughter and I... I wish I could have left him before he almost destroyed me! They suck you out of everything you have (money, love, mind, soul) and when they find new bait, they will leave. Not one person could change these monsters... Only God could... My only concern is that he now wants to have shared custody and visitation with our daughter.... Not sure as to how he will treat her when I'm not around since I always stood up to him when we lived together... If with an N, run and don't look back!