Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Sites To Avoid

[This rather rambling article is quite dated now, but the historical facts/truths of the early days remain the same. ~InvictaMA, 2013]

The Buddha said, 
Do not believe anything on the mere authority of teachers or priests. Accept as true and as the guide to your life only that which accords with your own reason and experience, after thorough investigation. Accept only that which contributes to the well-being of yourself and others.
Remember to exercise reasonable caution in perusing any site that analyses or pathologises the survivor of a relationship with someone pathologically disordered. Please seek legitimate counselling.

It is natural to want to support victims, but supporting victims is not identical to arming a lynch mob with lack of knowledge and misrepresentation. ~ Anonymous

Over the time spent on the internet trying to make sense of what happened with my encounter with an online psychopath I came to realise that there was a load of misinformation out there, on sites and in essays I encountered. I had garnered information, ostensibly pertaining to those with narcissistic personality disorder, only to come to the realisation, in time, that the inner life of disordered narcissism described, was more indicative of a psychopath, a slippery term in itself, [2] rather than the other. What to do?

When I joined support groups I was overwhelmed with new and old theories about how it was my fault, and actually very little that had to do with online psychopaths, even while a lot of the psychodynamics were relevant as in NPD, though more severely so.

I endured a Narcissistic Personality Disorder support group where I should have known better but was so desperate for a place to feel less alone. I made the mistake of trusting someone disordered who I thought was earnest in helping survivors to recover, not realising this person is probably a psychopath. The capricious deletions should have been a hint. Moreover, I found that site in particular to be a breeding ground for all sorts of disturbed and mendacious people, for opportunists who now have gone on to breed more disturbance and misinformation on their own sites.

The following are my considered opinions and a warning about some sites and essays and "research" I have encountered; I consider them significant for spreading misinformation and deserving of a caveat. I have a solid background in psychology and I am also the survivor of an encounter with an emotionally sadistic psychopath. I was also trained for rigorous thought and research (both undergrad and grad school ), so it's not likely that there is room for advocating silly and dangerous theories, a great disservice to the suffering.

I admit this bias: Most support groups and theories blame the victim/survivor, however unconsciously which, IMO, is anathema to survivors of encounters with psychopathic types. IMO and in my experience, there is nothing in the life of the survivor that caused the encounter with, or the behaviour of, someone disordered.
I have seen sites that create hypervigilance about psychopaths and NPD or any other disorder, even the mentally ill. Sites that load up on supposed symptoms that might trumpet a psychopath or "malignant narcissism", taken to the Nth degree of absurdity. Assertions that any less than a harmonious relationship may be founded upon verbal abuse and emotional abuse as the "victim" perceives it to be; and there are many to happily support that view. As if the DSM, the legal definitions and the clinical definitions weren't confusing enough, someone comes along on the net and decides there are way more psychopaths and "N"s than we ever imagined! And far more ways to identify their peculiarities, symptoms, traits, behaviour, than the governing psychiatric bodies ever imagined.
I think not.

Moreover, my major disagreement with a lot of what I've read on the net is the role of the target/victim/survivor. Call it "co-dependence", call it "hysteria" or "histrionic or borderline personality type", call it "echo personality disorder", all pathologize the victim. Who blames us? Those who have not been through it. Nor is some bigtime pathological narcissist or psychopath going to be the one to tell me about the dynamics and my psyche OR even begin to describe to me what the aftermath is like for survivors; for one thing, consider the source.

Disordered narcissists are not taking over the planet. Selfish, self-centred, egotistical people exist, and we have dealt with this from the beginning of creation, it is not new. "Narcissists" are not lurking around every corner (ok, perhaps in LA ) to do us in. Nor are there psychopaths slinking behind every bush and in every office (though there are a preponderance of them on the internet and they are known to be statistically overrepresented in mental health areas and law and politics ). Even the abusive are not necessarily without hope for redemption. The net has pathologised us all. And, hungry for information, we bit.

I think that misinformation is taking over the internet particularly in the newly "glamorous" area of narcissism. Listed here are sites and essays which I think promulgate victimisation- that is, indiscriminately pathologise us, the survivors; some, also, in effect, attempt to quantify our experience and bind our thoughts and feelings to the author's biases. And, on the Internet, there are other sites that incite hypervigilance and create a world bereft of kindness, where "N"s lurk in the shadows, in nooks and crannies, and we have to remain in "defence" mode....ever the potential or defective victim.....

~Invicta 06/22/03

Not Recommended
Echo No Longer; The Recovery Process of the Partner of the Person Suffering from a Narcissistically Impaired Personality. Mary Ann Borg Cunen, M.A.
Unprofessional and unethical use of subjects who were not consulted regarding permission to use said quotes for research. Lack of ethics includes the people who supplied/agreed to using the quotes for submission to a conference and later to dissemination of paper on the Internet. Unscientific; "echo" is conceptualised as a predisposition to pathological dependency, exemplified by the term, "Echo Dependent Personality"; finds the victim of narcissistic abuse as defective and blameworthy.
This is a site that purports to make narcissism/Narcissistic Personality Disorder easy to understand. Lack of cohesion, cobbled together from largely speculative and unreliable and untraceable sources it seems. Narcissism is not easy to understand, and this confuses and misleads further. The more pages are added, the more it becomes clear that this "Traci Spencer, MMFT, CACII" has never written an academic paper in her life, nor is willing to fully make an accounting of both, seemingly spurious sources, and some possibly legitimate resources- this, amidst material recycled once again from a single predominant "authority" who already saturates the Internet.
I have read a lot of this site. Who is this Robert Burney? No credentials, only a lot of psychobabble on "co-dependency". IMO, there is not a single line of writing that I would take seriously. The purported "book" is self-published. What's worse, though, is that it is promoted on some support sites without question.
(Update 2009: MSN groups has closed, but the NPD and Psychopath groups, respectively, live on on Yahoo and other bulletin boards, run by femfree and saturated with S. Vaknin spam/misinformation..)
Exemplify the quote above by 'Anonymous'. Though there are some good links, and some supportive people, it's the gateway to misinformation. The links are rife with trivialities, so that one has to wade through a morass of irrelevancy. Anyone can use a search engine and the managers surely have, uncritically. There is also significant crossover and cross-posting to both sites [and now, to another site that has been co-opted] and blurring of distinctions between narcissism, NPD, sociopathy, psychopathy. Also, these sites promote the work of a self-described NPD everywhere and especially on their sites as well as the work of authors cited above. The groups and, many of their links, tend to implicitly pathologize the victims/survivors of narcissistic abuse.  

To reiterate, they exemplify the quote above, and trivialise all aspects of mental health and mental disorder- that is, both the pathological narcissist/psychopath and survivors of their abuse, alike. These groups are managed by 'femfree', who deletes any challenges to the party line. (Addendum: still quoted is: The Psychopathic Style" A Documentary by Marion Trent and John McCormick ~Funnily, this "documentary" has never seen the light of day).
Once run by the steady hand of a knowledgeable person, has recently been co-opted by femfree and the other managers of the aforementioned MSN groups. Now merely a mirror site of the above, the original theses and information on which the site was based having been removed, and replaced with advertising for the usual support sites, and promoting SV's works [more Spam]. It definitely has been emptied of all "soul".
Currently, a portal to the main site, and little more. It's deader than Kenny.


More of the same, by the same above. "N-Partners", another MSN group is slowly morphing into more of the same above."

Group discussion about Narcissistic Personality Disorder. One of multitudinous sites on the Internet belonging to Sam Vaknin. He is a self-proclaimed "malignant narcissist". Though his writings purport to be the inner life of one disordered individual, unfortunately they distort too much about NPD to be credible. This is a recent quote: "NPD is the epidemic of our time - stealthy, pernicious, ubiquitous, unrecognized." [Unrecognized? How convenient for such an assertion with nothing to back it up except one self-described NPDer's opinion].

(Update 2009: Groups have closed on Suite 101 but Vaknin's spam continues.) 

Moreover, Mr. Vaknin's Ph.D. is not in psychology; and, in fact, it is from a diploma mill. His certification in counseling is from an online "school". [3].There is nothing in Mr Vaknin's CV that suggests a BA or MA in anything, never mind psychology. Mr Vaknin's emphasis in his CV seems to be/have been on economics. This is what he has to say about his "credentials":

I am not a mental health professional, as I state very prominently on my Web site. The content of this Web site [SV's] is based on correspondence since 1996 with hundreds of people suffering from the Narcissistic Personality Disorder (narcissists) and with thousands of their family members, friends, therapists, and colleagues.[That does not make this scientific research- it merely consists of anecdotal evidence, which has no authority in the scientific community. See: Narcissism and Grandiosity]
I passed a "Counselling Techniques" exam, provided online by Brainbench.
Here are the results:
Results Without A Name or Description

Take care there. Sam
[Counselling techniques without practice? Huh? I spent many many many hours with clients and with supervisors to assess my techniques and skills and abilities. And doesn't Brainbench use "open book" exams? This is so basic, to ask such questions.]

Also the pathological narcissist's worldview is aligned with his disorder. IMO, SV pathologises the target/victim/survivor as may his followers by proxy ("followers by proxy" are defined as those who maintain BBs and Support Groups whose posted quotes by SV dominate their sites and other sites where they post). IMO, zero credibility, even if they know the difference between bipolar and major depression.
S Vaknin has recently moved on to become editor of emotional/verbal abuse topics on Suite 101. I find this to be the ultimate irony. That the abuser gets to tell us, the survivors of abuse what we are about. And what we go through. The man is self-described disordered. Can anyone doubt his lack of empathy and inability to understand the point of view of the victim? And he is writing about the trauma that we suffer from narcissistic abuse? He is now writing a book using posts by abuse survivors on the Internet, that is, from anecdotal evidence, where anyone can make up anything, and without prior consent.

When announced that he was becoming editor, this is what his ardent follower, femfree, wrote:

This is wonderful news!! Congratulations. Your unparalleled resources, assistance and knowledge to survivors is exemplary. This is an exciting and innovative resource that will be most highly recommended everywhere!![It's called 'Spam' ~Invicta]
NO. His advice to survivors and anyone else, IMO, is far less than exemplary. And so is his continuing manipulation of the Internet and the discussion group [4]

Pathologising the Therapist

 From: Pathologizing the Victim by SV (2004):
Thus, an abuse victim who declines to have any further contact with her batterer - is bound to be chastised by her therapist for obstinately refusing to constructively communicate with her violent spouse.

Better to play ball and adopt the sleek mannerisms of your abuser. Sadly, sometimes the only way to convince your therapist that it is not all in your head and that you are a victim - is by being insincere and by staging a well-calibrated performance, replete with the correct vocabulary. Therapists have Pavlovian reactions to certain phrases and theories and to certain "presenting signs and symptoms" (behaviors during the first few sessions). Learn these - and use them to your advantage. It is your only chance.
Not only is there a narcissist or psychopath under every bush and beside every 'couch', but there are also inferior robotic 'Pavlovian' types in the helping professions, and the world is hostile and unkind- a breeding bed of paranoia and persecution. The author has no understanding whatsoever of the dynamics of abuse. Just a glib surface rendering. 

Such advice is unconscionable, to suggest manipulating the therapist just like a psychopath might- to hold therapists in contempt, just like a psychopath would- to assert that therapists are prone to a conditioned response, reducing their responses to the likes of rats and pigeons and all other animals. Yet this too is supported by the groups mentioned above. And on the internet, neither he nor they will be held to account. All he has to do is say "he is not a mental health professional" [but I play one on the Internet]. Caveat emptor! Consider the source. This is all opinion, and a misuse of psychology as we know it.

The Cyber Narcissist, by SV

This essay is a example of dangerous distortion, not a point of view one may see in a thoughtful, responsible essay on therapy and therapists- this essay in effect says to trust no one, and pathologises therapists, portraying many as potentially abusive. The writer has no idea of what is best for the abused, no idea of the dynamics of a therapeutic relationship. And the advice given in the final paragraph, is so harmful, and so out-to-lunch, that it can seriously damage a survivor's desire/efforts to find help by instilling doubt,lack of confidence or belief and trust in the helping professions.   
....[The cyber narcissist], "' ever the intimidating bully" - is not accustomed to such resistance'" [by others on the net, in groups, I presume].
This rather sounds like you can show no opposition , must play "nice", or be labelled a narcissist. 

The Cyber Narcissist As Online Therapeutic Catalyst 
The author absurdly suggests that therapeutic dynamics are at play in groups where cyberpaths play, which in my view is destructive, as well as adistortion of the concept and actuality of therapy. With the really disordered in the mix, the online group environment becomes toxic, illusory and tremendously damaging, not bracing. 

Compare the above with Wendy Koeningsmann's brilliant analysis of Psychopathic Types At Play on the Internet (reflects my experience to an uncanny degree); and The FBI Profile Of the Mental Rapist
Both these assessments do not profile a cyber narcissist as essentially an argumentative, belligerent, obnoxious bully. No, these types are far subtler than that and that is why people can be manipulated and fooled. And to make psychopathic play in groups akin to therapy is to distort the meaning of true therapy. Again, it seems that the author has little conception of what really happens in groups where cyber narcissists play. Or perhaps he is trying to deflect from the true psychopathic types/narcissists that do populate the internet - the ones that on the surface display true narcissism in action, as Dr. Bruce Gregory so nicely articulates:
When the narcissistic defense is operating in an interpersonal or group setting, the grandiose part does not show its face in public. In public it presents a front of patience, congeniality, and confident reasonableness.
For stories, hear one side- the story of a survivor, me, who not only had an encounter with my own personal sociopath, but a guru wannabe, Sam Vaknin, and his followers. An excerpt from his book sets that stage:

"The book was never intended to help anyone. Above all, it was meant to attract attention and adulation (narcissistic supply) to its author, myself. Being in a guru-like status is the ultimate narcissistic experience."


Anonymous said...

Be very careful on Here you will find lots of resources that include Vaknin, Burney, and others. The main theme seems to be codependency on the part of the abusee.

Anonymous said...

And the Dr. Irene/ Trubble's Catbox spinoffs: "The Next Right Choice" and "Our Place."

These sites are more interested in the NEXT DATE, avoiding healing or looking at one's self critically, pathologizing victims and avoiding honest discussion.

Anyone who tries to educate them about pathology is abused & banned.

Anonymous said...

I found the websites with Vaknin as a contributing member difficult to endure. They were overly moderated so that any ideas, concepts or questions that did not fall in line with his resulted in deletions of posts or memberships. As an injured survivor I found that negatively affected my recovery.

I also found Laura Knight-Jadzyk's forum on psychopathy difficult for the same reasons. If I didnt want to buy or read her books, I was pathologized, analyzed and left wanting, and challenged to heal myself before coming back. They wholly rejected the reality that any of us were victims, and yet that seems an important early step in recovery.

I am wary of any website to claim to know the one right way to think about what we went through or how to come out of it. I highly respect those that respect the victims and survivors, because as individuals, of course we have different ways of perceiving and acting in this world. EMDR was an incredible benefit to me, neutralizing the PTSD I realized I was left with, and I highly recommend it to anyone who asks, but I dont for a moment believe that is the only right way and will be the cure-all for everyone.

A wealth of victims needs a wealth of different resources, methods, professionals and spiritual paths.

Anonymous said...

I will reply to the comment by "anonymous" statements about the spinoffs of Dr. Irene's site. "These sites are more interested in the NEXT DATE, avoiding healing or looking at one's self critically, pathologizing victims and avoiding honest discussion.

Anyone who tries to educate them about pathology is abused & banned."

None of the above is true. I've been a member of "our Place" since its inception, and on the contrary, the members do not pathologize victims and at the same time avoid looking at ourselves critically, which by the way would be difficult to do since these two things are mutually exclusive. The members also on the contrary are very interested in honest, open and searching discussions. And there are links posted quite often to outside information about pathological behaviors and they are discussed almost continuously.

All one has to do is visit the site and see for themselves, without taking as truth one who seems to have a particular ax to grind. Believe me, I know when a forum is unsafe, and this is the safest and most honest forum I can find at this time in my own recovery.

Anonymous said...


I was on Dr. Irene and Our Place and got banned & slimed by you people for not making "the NEXT RIGHT CHOICE" but trying to figure out myself first.

I am still in contact with 5 women who all had similar treatment at your hands.

Nice try. You guys are morons. Nasty, selfish. Verbally abusive and then claiming anyone who won't put up with it is the abuser. Pure projection.

Anonymous said...

There you go. Anonymous showed her hand.

Anonymous said...

"Nice try. You guys are morons. Nasty, selfish. Verbally abusive and then claiming anyone who won't put up with it is the abuser. Pure projection."

Indeed it is... pure projection.

Anonymous said...

Allabouthim also has a problem with arbitrarily banning people that don't ascribe to the moderators point of view, hell I got banned for reading someones blog and then linking to someone elses through that blog, guess she did didn't like the referer website I came from so the person got with the admin of and banned me! Talk about needing absolute control !

LinaBeana said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

I was banned from the Psychopath and Narcissist Survivors Support Group after I asked if any of the moderators are mental health professionals. This is one of Sam Vaknin's sites so I shouldn't be surprised. I was just starting to feel some benefit from exchanging stories with others on the forum. Being banned with no explanation is worse than never seeking help at all. This is really irresponsible and reckless behavior from people that are supposed to be in the business of healing. Now I'm seeking a support group because I was banned from a support group. Talk about feeling pathetic.

Anonymous said...

I've now realised that there is a very real danger in seeking help from abuse by going to "abuse" sites in that no matter how qualified the person is experiencing abuse does not make you any sort of expert, there are people out there who will tell you how severly handicapped they are from the abuse and that they suffer from PTSD, and yet they are moderating a forum ??? The PTSD clearly shows though when you read their responses to people seeking help because they clearly are still struggling with the effects of the abuse and most likely are triggered by the story being related. Thus affecting their response to the person seeking help. Generally those "victims" that can offer the most help are the ones that have become healthy and healed and in a sense moved beyond the abuse which means they have less of an interest in "helping" because they are now living a healthy life and not dwelling on the past.

Anonymous said...

The woman who had the biggest issue with my posts joined the forum less than a year ago with fresh wounds. If you're not a whiny blubbering mess that eats up everything she doles out, she doesn't trust you. I assumed the moderators were somehow qualified to well... moderate. They are so cautious of anything that may trigger a member, but they're also protecting themselves from any perspective that challenges their victim mentality. Some of these people post daily for years. I was really hurt when I was banned, but now I'm sort of relieved I don't belong there. It helps to exchange stories with others who have endured the abuse of a narcissist, but I also want to take responsibility for myself and at some point stop thinking about him completely. I didn't even realize Vaknin was the site admin when I joined. I made the mistake of joining the first forum I found. I'm supposed to be deferring to the authority of Windsong or ButterflyFairy about a dangerous and highly misunderstood psychiatric condition? Are there any quality online support groups?

LinaBeana said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Correction - the moderator joined 3 years ago after she found out her bf of 8 years had several ongoing affairs. He doesn't even really sound like a narcissist. They throw this label around so easily it's scary. Some men just cheat.

anonymouse...are we men or are we mice? said...

Wow shall we found a "posters" anonymous forum lol I've actually found that several moderators are....dare I say it ? Narcisissts themselves, they don't moderate, they control, micromanage and when that doesn't work they go NC (usually banning with no warning) the very people seeking help, I for one began to feel almost attacked when I expressed my opinion (rarely) and it was a revelation to be so summarily banned, but all I could really think was "thank God I hadn't revieled more about myself in that supposedly "safe" environent. Oh one other thing I learned was how to spot abuse NO MATTER where it was comming from and to have the courage to speak up about it . I felt like I tested out of the course work so to speak. Maybe I will start a blog for banned refugees ha ha . No really .

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Unknown said...

Anonymous said...

The banished should definitely unite! I have a thread going about my experience on another NPD forum. The forum is for those suffering with NPD and those affected by it. It's really refreshing, but some non-NPD's might be wary of interacting with NPD's.

April 8, 2010 11:55 AM

[Edited to remove link above].

A suggestion: it is never a good idea for those recovering from abuse to read a 'for NPD' site . All the reasoning in the world cannot make up for the toxicity of being in the presence of someone of disordered character. You're fooling yourselves if you think that there can be rapprochement between the victimised and abusers.

You are very likely to be triggered, have your brain seize up from the endless cognitive dissonance they engender, and you are setting back your recovery enormously. Those sites are a great place to spin your wheels and feel and smell the burn.


Anonymous said...

For the first time in many years, I have had the guts to ask for advice and share about myself on a NPD support forum.

I feel that because I am getting better and want to move on, that now I am being ostracized. It is very disconcerting that a site that says they are supportive, are not supportive of you when you are getting healthy.

Anonymous said...

The most important thing for abuse survivors to do when they seek support is to not stop THINKING. If you feel your gut turning over, LISTEN to that, something is wrong. If you find yourself worshipping the moderator, or OTHER people "worshipping" a moderator, something is wrong. A moderator that does not DISCOURAGE flattery and open admiration is waving a red flag.

Forums with more than two or three moderators/admins, such as Our Place, have little or no issues with despotism/nepotism. Their manner of reaching decision is by deliberation and consensus.

This creates a stability for the membership, and prevents one person's experience/advice as somehow becoming a gospel truth.

Even forums lead by therapists must be participated in with your brain turned ON. Advice from a woman fresh out of her abusive relationship can be as valuable as a grizzled veteran :) Keeping your brain turned on at all times is your (mine as well) responsibility. Turning our brain OFF is part of how we got so deep into these relationships in the first place.

No one is your guru. Take what feels right and encourages you to take back control of your life.

Anonymous said...

Dr. Irene's site, and the two spinoffs I found to have abusive members. One on Our Place privately railed me for not leaving my abusive spouse and called me an idiot! In my experience, victims of domestic violence turn on victims with the ferocity of a narcissist. Some of the people there were dedicated to their recovery, but on the whole I would avoid these places like the plague and stay with professional counselors or in-person support groups.

Anonymous said...

Another site to avoid is:

This Site is run by an ex cop and photographer named Gary Walters. The guy constantly brags about his mediocre photography by posting pix and soliciting compliments.

The moderators are all people who claim to be victims of PDs. None have any psychology backgrounds.

One of the moderators has aspergers and frequently misreads social cues and perceives insults where non exist and then lashes out at the poor member who made the innocent comment.

Typically the other moderators back up the moderator with aspergers, even though it is obvious she is misreading social cues as part of her syndrome.

Haggis another moderator skewered the therapist treating him and his wife claiming the therapist was not a good one because she suggested that he might be partially responsible for the disconnect between he and his wife.

Anonymous said...

Avoid "Our Place". They have an inner click of "special individuals" whose friendship you must have if you are to receive much attention when you join the forum. They like needy, drip, drip complainers who keep posting years after leaving an abusive relationship. Whatever happened to learning the lessons and moving on with your life?

Anonymous said...

Laura Knight Jadcyzk is a wacko

and her BFF Sandra Brown is no better

avoid them BOTH

Anonymous said...

bink-think is Bink from Our Place and Breisis from Both those places were big on CODEPENDENCE - here's something from Bink herself:

Vain Encounters owner Lisa Scott has been trying to suck money off the members for years; same as Womansavers... both places - like Our Place - are to be avoided if you want any genuine help.

Anonymous said...

Good forum here - site run by Dr. Robert Hare:

Anonymous said...

another great free site, chock full of good information:

Anonymous said...

Any abuse support forum where members are encouraged to share every little detail should be avoided. All it does is encourage codependency.

Avoid any forum where members who take a break from posting are frozen out upon their return. A healthy abuse support forum should support and encourage moving on to needing to post less and less and then eventually not posting at all.

Proper healing is what you move on to do with your life and not based on how much you reveal of yourself on a forum. Having thousands of posts on a forum is not a sign of healing but a sign of being stuck.

Anonymous said...


And 'being stuck' often is PSTD or C-PTSD in the aftermath of a narcissist. It is not possible to just "move on" for many.

Anonymous said...

Any forum where members drool over the moderators, singing their praises and defending them when another member raises a complaint.

Anonymous said...

Beware anything from Jurriaan Plesman who claims to be a 'nutritional Psychotherapist' but trolls the internet looking for persons seeking help. He invariable responds with diagnosing 'hypoglycemia' and a link back to his own non-scientific, invalid, bias-laden 'articles.' His credentials are false and his range of self-proclaimed 'expertise' is vast.

Anonymous said...

This is a very interesting thread. I too have been to most of those sites and have found them FULL of ego and/or disordered character. I run a page now for survivors. I made it VERY clear that I am NOT a professional and speak ONLY via experience. I'm also still in the middle of the healing process. I created it as a forum for safe sharing and the encouragement to process experiences, as well as MOVING FORWARD. It is my hope they find some information and can share safely, process their experiences and move on with their lives. I will stay for as long as I can with the page. I'm in school for a degree in Psychology, a Master's so I can help victims of abuse. This is a passion for me and has been for a long time, however, I DO NOT expect others to feel this way, nor to go into the field. I don't think it's true that a page or blog can't be run by someone who is in the midst of a healing journey. I learn from survivors that post. SHARING the experience from the perspective of a survivor too. This has worked out very well for everyone involved. I do not and will not visit pages where there are hierarchies. It is not true that with consensus within the moderator group, that it's at all helpful to survivors. There is way too much ego that gets in the way to make those sorts of decisions. God Bless you all on your journey's and remember to just trust your gut when seeking support. It will never let you down!

Anonymous said...

Barbara Camwell Ness google her name and avoid her like the plague! read
This woman is running scams/cons on the DV community.She is a fired file clerk on mental disability playing at online counseling.She used to be a moderator for lisa scott on vainencounters!

Anonymous said...

I second the recommendation to avoid the Out of the Fog website. It's being run by a hard core psychopath, administrators with Asperger's, and moderators with personality disorders. They recently conspired against and summarily banned the site's former owner, and now have no voice of reason/restraint to counterbalance their outrageous treatment of vulnerable members. It's advertised as a site for 'family members' of people with personality disorders, yet in reality there are more members with PD's than without. Avoid this site at all costs, and don't waste your money on their ebook. It's as worthless as their on site references.

Anonymous said...

I've just stumbled upon forums re: personality disorders. This is great information. In the past I had been on some forums that were pertaining to child abuse, and discovered the moderator was a pedophile.

It's scary how easy it is to start up an online forum. People with a genuine desire to help start them, but some people seem like they're just seeking an easy to manipulate group of followers, or victims.

Lost Leah said...

Anonymous wrote: I second the recommendation to avoid the Out of the Fog website. It's being run by a hard core psychopath, administrators with Asperger's, and moderators with personality disorders. They recently conspired against and summarily banned the site's former owner, and now have no voice of reason/restraint to counterbalance their outrageous treatment of vulnerable members. It's advertised as a site for 'family members' of people with personality disorders, yet in reality there are more members with PD's than without. Avoid this site at all costs, and don't waste your money on their ebook. It's as worthless as their on site references.

I was on OOTF for a while and got banned by ISP address after making VR friends there. It was devastating. How sad to find even online support groups are a minefield for those of us mindfucked by personality-disordered parents.

Anonymous said...

I was just banned from a narcissistic abuse recovery site this week. I have been a target of narcissists three times now. At the site, I found supportive people. But they gave advice that conflicted with the books I was reading, and I gave some counterpoint in a civil way -- I didn't think anything of it. I was also considering breaking No Contact with a narc in my life to assert myself once and for all to move past he healing.

I went to the support site to report that I decided to take their advice, and continue with No Contact (rather than breaking it), and found I was banned. I asked the moderators why, as I had not broken any rules, and I was told it was because I did not take their advice. The maain moderator quoted her 12 years of experience with mental disorders (something I was not aware of, as it was not published on the site). Apparently my tendency to say "Yes, but..." also offended the moderators because they thought it was disputatious. As I re-read everything I posted, I saw none of that.

She invited me to back to the site, but I asked to have my account deregistered. This was because I believed any group of moderators who would resort to summary executions of new members, rather than to counsel, warn, suspend and THEN ban people, were acting like narcissists themselves -- they had valued me, other members had bonded with me, and then, out of the blue, they had banned me as a big surprise, discarding my contributions and showing an incredible lack of caring for an individual their mission was meant to support.

So, I would stay away from online discussion forums meant to "help" people who have sufferred narcissistic abuse. They can be as abusive as narcissists can be.

Cat Fraser said...

I would like to make one more suggestion. Please avoid this sight at all cost:

They have a lot of Sam Vaknin links, and allow him to participate on their board. They have some misinformation as well.

Members offer a lot of advice that doesn't seem correct and are forceful with how they provide feedback to their new members. They don't merely encourage but demand No Contact, there is also a lot of insensitivity on this board from several members. It is also a bit clickish.

The Admin ( I believe) has some serious emotional issues. It's been my personal experience that if anybody offers suggestions, even in a friendly way, she takes offense. To make matters worse the Admin will ban a person without allowing them feed back, and handles any issue in a completely thoughtless manner, not allowing for a dialogue between herself and members, or between members among themselves. She controls. She also favors one person over another in disputes. She lacks the ability to counsel warmly and gently. She did not suspend me, only banned. There was NO WARNING.

I had joined this site a month ago and was banned without any real explanation. I was recently flamed by a new member. I had made a post about this, without using names, fowl language or being negative. I said I would take time from the site. I was told my post would be deleted by the Admin after she accused me of calling out in my post. I sent an apology to the Admin. She said "Thank you for your input" and banned me. To make matters worse I was given no explanation as to why I was banned and my emails were blocked from the moderator after I made an apology for a post that was generalized and not personally attacking of anyone on the site, nor was it mean spirited. (In the post I had simply expressed my safe space no longer felt safe and that singling out people seemed against the TOS.) In my email to her I offered a small suggestion to the TOS about singling out people (which is what had been done to me in a passive aggressive way) I asked that my comments on the flamer's post be deleted for my own comfort. My comments were never deleted, and I had no ability to delete them myself.

It has been painful as I felt I found a home, shared so much personal information, and when I asked that my replies be deleted from the other member's post who flamed me, I was blocked.

Essentially what the flamer did was thank everybody but me for their feedback. Some of the feedback was insulting to her, I was kind and did my best to be gentle, even apologizing if I seemed harsh. Others were much more harsh. My personal post addressed singling out people by what we dont say, and showing favoritism, which is against the TOS, and it went ignored. Again no names mentioned.

I have never been banned from a site in my entire life, nor had issues beyond the norm with anybody. I dont fight online, as it seems pointless. But when I pointed out to the Admin, in my own personal post, that I was triggered and felt hurt that my safe space was no longer safe, she handled it extremely poor.

Also most members have PTSD or PTSD-C, that an Admin is that thoughtless and careless with others is a HUGE RED FLAG.

Please be wary of this site.