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Weekly updates on sociopath abuse awareness and trauma recovery.
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Paula's Pontification's Newsletter

Volume 1, Issue 5
August 25, 2014
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Love. Life. Om.

If you follow my blog, you are probably aware that I earned my 200-hour yoga teacher training certification on August 8, 2014. My training consisted of 10 months of immersing myself in all things yoga. My physical, emotional and spiritual practices were transformed.p>

Along the way, I landed a new day job with a company I deeply respect, became a vegan, started studying nutrition and anatomy and realized I want to share more than just my writings with survivors of relational abuse and trauma.

In May, I enrolled in a health coach training program through The Institute of Integrative Nutrition. It's a year-long program, so by this time next year, I will be fully certified as a health coach and armed with the knowledge and resources to work one-on-one with survivors and their supporters.

I’m calling this project Love. Life. Om. (because I had to learn to Love myself before I found a Life worth living and foster both through a mindful connection with Om).

My desire is to partner with individuals, community organizations, and corporations and offer abuse awareness and recovery guidance. My focus will be yoga, meditation, group consciousness workshops, and nutrition. I will surely be incorporating the See the Triumph Workbooks highlighted below, along with other approaches to recovery that have worked for me and others.

My hope is for all survivors to succeed and to find their peace, joy and happiness.


In this issue...
Namaste!
~Paula Carrasquillo, author of Escaping the Boy: My Life with a Sociopath

If you haven't already, sign up to receive this newsletter automatically each week. I love feedback, constructive criticism, and any insight you can offer to make this experience more valuable for all of us. Contact me!

Issue Feature

Patterns of Behavior of a Pro-Social Psychopath

The following has been republished here with permission by the author, Genetic Psycho:

This is the "Lackadaisical Lawson List" of pro-social psychopathic habits. These criteria are based on the life experiences of growing up with a violent psychopathic father and subsequently, being (unknowingly) married to a nonviolent high-functioning sociopath.[1] The husband had a "devil-may-care" attitude and perpetrated a fraud for over 10 years. This was made possible by the victim's early childhood training to ignore dysfunctional behaviors that were not violent, but later revealed as emotionally damaging. If all of these criteria are met, then you are dealing with a psychopath, also known as a covert narcissist.

You probably love this "nice" person because you pay no attention to their idiosyncrasies (inconspicuous red flags) - the subtle clues that they have no conscience, and they will betray you on a whim. Socialized Psychopaths (aka Sociopaths or Malignant Narcissists) fool everyone, and only show their true colors after their schemes are uncovered, or they get bored with you.

  1. Be sensitive to contradictions. They end a conversation with a statement that opposes what they said at the beginning. They talk about the problems of the world like a good citizen, yet break the rules without apology, and are just so happy go lucky.

  2. Double-check their (tsunami of) stories. They talk (boast or demean) nonstop about the people in their lives because they (are property) are extensions of themselves. No one is off limits so they even lie about their children. Mainly they specialize in half-truths and disinformation. They have no problem keeping important information away from you.

  3. Pay attention to the quick lane changes in conversation. (One second they are talking about their kid's party, then a half-second later, they are talking about their friend's dead cat and veterinary history.)

  4. Look for cold, "robotic" reactions to what should be emotionally troublesome events. Ex: They will state verbally their disappointment, but it's just words, no show of emotion nor corresponding action. They will make no effort to resolve an issue, no matter how much they yammer on about it. (They feel no sorrow. They have no shame. Their feelings don't get hurt. This also makes the lackadaisical psychopath incredibly easy to live with. They treat spouses and family members like roommates.)

  5. Track each time they bug you with questions about how you would act in certain (off the wall) situations: "What would you do if I...fill in the blank". Ex: "What would you do if you came out of your apartment and saw me hiding in the bushes?" *This is something a normal person would not need to ask.* If you respond like they are idiots for asking, then they act like it was just a joke. But, they will ask you another odd thing later, and again and again...

  6. Take note of their scapegoating. Scapegoating is a term that's usually associated with assigning blame, but psychopaths also expertly assign credit where little or none is due. This gives them a saintly aura, but the reality is that it's all lies regardless.

  7. Analyze their desire to move quickly into a close relationship; calling you endearing terms right away, insisting that you should freely bring them into your circle of trust, wanting you to share living quarters or share a business venture very soon after meeting... all very seductive, and ego-boosting for you.

  8. Observe the "Poor Me, I'm the Victim" tone and words that they use to get your sympathy, which can fool you into being controlled/manipulated by them and giving them stuff (time, special favors, gifts...). They also use this pity play when they need an excuse as to why they didn't act responsibly, or didn't give you a birthday present.

  9. Notice a pattern of hot-cold-hot-cold-hot attraction and attention to you. When they give you the cold shoulder, they leave you inwardly begging for more attention. When they finally bring the heat back, you experience maximum elation and feel high from the boost of dopamine (the "love" chemical) and endorphins. They manipulate you into pretty much being addicted to them, so you repeatedly forgive whatever transgressions they perpetrated against you.

  10. Be wary of their number of claims that "There was a misunderstanding", because they know that phrase restores your trust, and eases their way past you catching them in a lie.

Tips:

  • A psychopath gives 4 messages: 1. I like who you are. 2. I am just like you. 3. Your secrets are safe with me. 4. I am the perfect friend/lover for you. This is how a psychopath will very rapidly create an intimate bond with his prey.[2]

  • Psychopaths (as predators) target genuinely nice people. If you are victimized, that doesn't mean there is something wrong with you, it means you are one of the best human beings.

  • Psychopaths (as parasites) test boundaries to see if you are a self-sacrificing people-pleaser. They start by asking for small personal favors that make you feel included, but inconvenience you slightly ("Give me a wake-up call", "Help me with my job search", etc.)

  • Psychopaths are the most fun people to hang out with because they are always looking for new forms of entertainment, and invite you along for the ride. They will take you to Disney World and tell you it's a special treat just for you, when it really is where they were going anyway, regardless of your accompanying them. Nothing is ever for you because neurologically, psychopaths can only be self-serving.[3]

Warnings:

  • Never give your trust freely. Beware anyone who asks you to do so. Trust must be earned.

  • The most overlooked sign of psychopathy is "Eerily calm demeanor".

  • Do not confront a psychopath about your discovery of their psychopathy. That would be like backing a wild animal into a corner.

  • Be careful of confiding in their "nice" family members, since psychopathy is genetic.[4]

Citations:


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Recovery Support

FREE Recovery Workbooks for Individual and Group Support

See the Triumph Workbooks were created for survivors by See the Triumph founders, Dr. Christine Murray and Dr. Allison Crowe. 

The following is taken from See the Triumph Workbook, Volume 1:


We created these See the Triumph Workbooks to provide a format for survivors and others to take some of the resources we've developed for See the Triumph into local communities. Our hope is that these Workbooks will provide a way for people take action in their local communities to work with us on our two main goals for See the Triumph: (1) challenging the stigma surrounding intimate partner violence and (2) providing supportive resources for survivors.

The Workbooks are written for survivors. They are based on some of our past blog posts and other resources. We've added an introduction and some Reflection and Discussion Questions to each resource to help you think about how well the information applies to your life. Each week’s article ends with an Affirmation that we encourage survivors to reflect upon throughout the coming week.

Although a survivor could use these Workbooks on her/his own, we ideally hope that they will be useful for small-group discussions, such as in support groups and “book clubs.” Because of this, we've also developed See the Triumph Workbooks Facilitator Guide.

We envision that Facilitators could come from all walks of life and provide either peer support or professional support for survivors. In other words, Facilitators could be either trained mental health or domestic violence service professionals, or they could be survivors who are interested in leading peer groups.


Signup to receive your FREE copies of See the Triumph Workbooks and consider starting your own discussion and support group today.

If you’re not already connected with See the Triumph communities, please join them:

See the Triumph website
On Facebook 
On Twitter 
On Pinterest 
On Causes 

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Plan Ahead

Halloween is just around the corner. Take action and start planning your Red Riding Hood Project costume.


Silent No More

Check out the personal stories shared by survivors on the blog page Identifying a Sociopath.


Retreats/Conferences

Getting together to heal is not out-of-reach. We're planning a trip next September to ARC. Stay tuned!
Copyright © 2014 Love. Life. Om., All rights reserved.


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