Carrot and the Stick

The Carrot and Stick Tactic

Have we forgotten what love is? Today we hear so many people (to include myself at times), say how much they love their narcissist. Speaking for myself, I can say that I loved him with all of my heart, every beat, every breath. I don’t remember ever feeling like this about another person, nor have I ever been as badly hurt.

I had forgotten what love was…

The feeling of being with someone that loves you as much (if not more) than you love them is an incredible feeling. A healthy relationship with someone where you set goals together, plan holidays, vacations, work together to build a life as one. To have equal strengths and directions, is all a good recipe for a healthy journey.

This doesn’t happen with a narcissist. It doesn’t, it will never. They are not capable!

In the beginning, a narcissist will say anything to get your to fall for their performance and they will perform it well. During the Love Bombing stage, they will put it all out there. After all, they can only make this effort for a short period of time, so their first impression is what gets them in the door. This will go on until it becomes exhausting to them. They give it their all in the beginning and then ride the wave that follows.

If things don’t seem to be working out, there will be someway guaranteed that the blame will be places on you. doesn’t happen with a narcissist.

Do these words sound Familiar??

  • Where have you been all my life”
  • “I’ve never felt this way before”
  • “I can’t wait to spend the rest of my life with you”
  • “You really get me”
  • “We are soulmates”
  • “I don’t want this to ever end”

It’s all BS…. It really is!!  As you live through the nightmare of this relationship with a narcissist, you will become more and more confused about whats right and wrong. You will develop a cognitive dissonance when trying to justify things that are just unjustifiable.

Have you forgotten what it’s like to be loved with respect and fidelity?  I know I certainly had throughout the past many years.

Each narcissist has a list of lines that they seem to use over and over again. They learn whats works for them. When you are in a vulnerable state, it’s very hard to see through the facade that they create.  You start to believe their stories, promises and sweet words. None of these things are  backed-up with actions, integrity or character.

Actor

And so the show begins…

You must see that they are like a character played in a theater built just for their amusement. They are a skilled actor that performs just to entertain themselves. Learning what to say, what to do, just render the results they want becomes their primary focus.

This is where you come in… You are the supply!  

You have something to offer that they want, or need. Be it attention, money, status, support, sex or just a punching bag.  They get a kick out of what they can get and how much they can get away with it.

They find all the vulnerabilities within you and then they fill those voids (temporarily mind you). Whatever they need to provide to suit your needs, will surly be short term. 

  • Offer you something you want or crave.
  • Make you want it more than you did before.
  • Then take it away, but dangle it ahead creating the desire.
  • They make you work harder for it, to fix it, make it better (but this is impossible)
  • Then they toss you to the curb when you no longer serve the purpose.
  • Oh, don’t forget they will come around again “hoovering”

All of these stage occur and then there is a repeat of the cycle.  Act II, III. IV and so on.  The play remains playing as long as you choose to be in the audience.

It is human nature, when we feel vulnerable, we seek comfort and validation. I swear they can almost sniff it out… A narcissist knows how to play this part very well, it is instinctive and a well formatted script.  Don’t kid yourself, its all well planned in their head.

Love bombing…

When we are being love bombed it is euphoric. During love bombing you feel overwhelmed with the attention, adoration and the chemistry spikes. All of those little special things, sweet texts, attentiveness, flowers, pet names, thoughtful gestures, gifts, great sex… all of it comes flooding in, faster and faster as they increase their attack on your core emotions and vulnerabilities. These are all manipulation tactics that are laying the foundation of their future games of strategy.

Yup, you are getting set up for the staging of the show to come…

Very quickly they set out to groomed to fit their needs.  You fall so head over-heels for them, it’s like an addiction to everything they are. Them have you wanting more and more, but you  have no idea that the narcissist is full of false promises. You invest yourself into this relationship, because you feel that they are investing themselves into one with you too.

They present a persona that makes you need them. You start to feel secure that they want whats best for you. A narcissist will help move you, or do the “manly” or “womanly”things around the house. They will make small gestures to show their feelings, however they are not feelings, they are a strategic plan to catch you up in their chaos.

A narcissist is like a chameleon. They learn to mirror everything they need to blend into your life’s  background. You will notice how they start to pick up your lingo, habits, hobbies, anything that makes you more obviously connected to them.  Didn’t you start to feel like they became an extension of “your” life.  Generally because they don’t have one of their own.

The narcissist clings to a life to feed upon it, not to nurture it. This is why narcissists have been nicknamed “Emotional Vampires”.  They suck the life right out of you!

Promises made and broken…

A narcissist will tantalize you with promises made that never come true.  They will falsely offer you a relationship where you feel deeply validated and taken care of. However, they only make these small investments in the beginning, because their true motive is for you to take care of them.

We become comfortable with the laser-focused attention, we actually get addicted to it.  The sex during the love bombing and initial idealization phase is explosive! The relationship has the perfect balance, a steady up-climb and the goal at the top, is your soul.  However, all during this time you think it’s being nurtured, but its actually being raped.  Yes, raped!!

The narcissist knows exactly how to bring us to greater heights. They are Pros! It’s what they live for, how they live.  They have learned over their lifetime this technique and it serves them well to catch you up, spin you around and then make you feel like hell. If they discard you and give you the silent treatment, you are prime prey. They will have you wanting something that you don’t even really want.

They’ve studied who we are, what we like and learned to mimic it.  Little do we know, sex and intimacy will later be used as ammunition.

Narcissists are skilled artists of manipulation. They will flatter you with attention, gain your trust and adoration, then start their field of games. Now that you are properly seasoned, “Let the games begin”.

The Carrot and Stick Tactic

One of the foundations of their strategy is how they lure you in and then punish you for falling for it 1 out of 3 times. This simple manipulation technique is to elicit certain behaviors desired by the narcissist.

One day everything is great and just because you added one additional word to your sentence, the words become scrambled, the narcissist takes flight with rage and anger and you haven’t a clue what you did or said wrong. WACK!! You get the stick!

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Next time it might be different, you actually might get the carrot, if you succumb to the submissiveness of doing everything their way. What a wicked game they play, leaving your wanting and waiting.

They punish you for having the love that they have created. You become convenient for them, then without warning, they come back with the punishment to condition you when you try to express your needs. Don’t have any, not if you want to remain on the good side of this Mask Predator!

This is absolute emotional abuse!

I went through the positive and negative reinforcements during my relationship with my ex-narcissist. He would promise me the world, then he would create an argument when it was time for him to keep that promise.

I would confront his words that were not supported by his actions and he would become extremely defensive. The intensity of his anger would come from nowhere and obviously triggered as a result of being unmasked. When they stand naked, they FREAK!

A trip up that was unable to be justify in his behavior, would be met with panic and irrational explanations. So, it was easier to cause an argument, project fault and avoid. It use to make me feel “It’s you or me babe…” And, you can count on it, in those situations, it was him!

“The only person that gets angry hearing the truth, is one that’s living a lie”

Unknown

Just when you start to realize what is going on and things aren’t as they appear, the Gaslighting begins.  He would though statements from the air… “I can’t stand your manic behavior”, “Your crazy”, “It’s all in your head”, “Pump the brakes…”, “You know your the love of my life, and if you don’t know how I feel about you, then shame on you”.

You start to think, “Is there something wrong with me?”, “Did I do something wrong” and you find that you start to question yourself and your cognitive dissonance starts to play a game on you. You loose grasp of the reality that you know is going on and are being convinced by the narcissist that it’s you.

I once read this on a web site, making it a cross reference to cognitive Dissonance.

“There’s no earthly way of knowing, which direction we are going. There’s no knowing where we’re rowing, Or which way the river’s flowing. Is it raining? Is it snowing? Is a hurricane a-blowing? Not a speck of light is showing, So the danger must be growing….”  

Willy Wonka, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory 

Cognitive Dissonance.  Do yourself a favor, read about cognitive dissonance and how it creates an alternate belief and confused state.

By definition…

Cognitive dissonance is “the psychological discomfort a person feels when he or she holds conflicting beliefs about something simultaneously.”.

As a result of cognitive dissonance, we enter into a state that keeps us attached to our abusive partner, despite knowing that they are incapable of loving us.  The confusion is wanting to believe them, and knowing the truth nonetheless.  It doesn’t make sense. Many people suffer from narcissistic abuse and cognitive dissonance keeps them trapped in the cycle.

We find it so hard to let go of our dreams and all that we believed our relationship to be. And, it was all a lie, it wasn’t real!  The narcissist is an actor and we fell for it.  The question remains, Why?  For that answer, we need to seek down deep within ourselves. What has us so confused that we believe something that is outside our beliefs, factually presented in front of us. We see it, we know it, we chose to allow someone to influence our belief system to the extent that they are able to cause us to believe something that we know not to be true.

Their actions and words don’t match up. If you address them about their conflicting facts, words, actions… They go into a melt down mode because you have inflicted narcissistic injury. This is guaranteed to occur should you dare to challenge them.  Know, if you chose to not accept their lies, infidelities, erratic behavior, they are sure to say, there is something wrong with you (gaslighting). They may even be able to make you believe it. You are blamed for the argument and then they will go into the silent treatment without regard of how it leaves you feeling (no closure, isn’t that a pin pinching your ass?). This is a conditioning to lower your expectations and make you compliant for the crumbs that you are yet to be minimized to in the near future. You feel like a sitting duck for the abuse and be careful when walking on those eggshells, a crack in any one of them will set them off, even if your not the one that crack it.

Be aware of the Carrot and Stick tactic.  You are chasing something that will never be. This is an act of control and a tool for the narcissist to trick you right into their web.

Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.

Fool me three times, then I’m the fool!! 

Don’t be a fool!  There isn’t enough time on earth that we should waste all the precious gifts we have to offer the right person, on one that doesn’t deserves it. We can’t change them, cure them and we didn’t create them.  Let them GO!!

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