By: Lisa M. Hayes – Confluence Daily is your daily news source for women in the know.
There is a phenomenon in first-year med school where med students find themselves seriously ill with everything. They start learning to diagnose and in the process begin to see symptoms everywhere they look. The same thing happens when therapists, counselors, and mental health professionals get ahold of the DSM5, the book with which you diagnose mental health disorders. The first thing everyone does is diagnose their mother, but it’s not long before they realize they, themselves probably have schizophrenia – even well-trained professionals can fall victim to textbook diagnosis and pop-psychology.
There are all kinds of psychological terms that get tossed around the internet. Narcissist, psychopath, narcissistic psychopath, narcissistic malignant controlling manipulator, you know, all the things your Ex should probably be diagnosed with. Having a name for things makes it easier to make sense of things that are hard to piece together.
I recently talked to a woman who’d been emotionally and psychologically abused by her fiance for almost two years. It was bad. Everyone could see it but her. She told me that after her best friend’s roommate pointed out to her that he was a classic malignant narcissist she knew she needed to end it. She looked it up online. She read all the “symptoms” and sure enough, it fit him to a tee. So, she was finally done. He’s crazy.
The roommate is a barista. While the observant barista might have been right, those kinds of diagnosis are very complicated and it’s not easy to get right. Even more so, it’s sad that so often we need an excuse to leave a relationship that’s not working.
So, I’m going to make it easy for you. Let’s stop throwing around terms that should probably be reserved for a professional with a diagnostic degree and experience. A person doesn’t have to have a diagnosis from a psychotherapist or a barista to be dangerous to themselves and others. So, we’re going to create a new category of assholes you should avoid – or break up with, romantically or otherwise.
It’s not a diagnosis so much as it is a title.
Unfit to play with People Classic Manipulator.
1. The Unfit to play with People Classic Manipulator will make you the most important person in the Universe as long as you’re the moon and they are the sun.
The Unfit to play with People Classic Manipulator needs to be the center of attention but they need a support staff. This person sees you. They know how smart you are. They think you’re beautiful. However, you are like the perfect accessory – you know, like that amazing purse that looks great with any outfit – but make no mistake you are just the purse. The outfit is the stunner.
They will make you their “Partner” (read – assistant).
They will tell you they can’t have fun at the party without you because they need a designated driver.
They will tell you, you’re the best friend they’ve ever had but won’t remember your birthday.
2. The Unfit to play with People Classic Manipulator will make you think other people don’t like you but they are your biggest cheerleader.
“I told my mother you’re actually really good with money and your business is going to be a success.”
Sounds kind of like a compliment, right?
Except it will stick in your head because you’ll wonder what his mother said about the way you manage money and why she’s wondering about your business prospects.
This person triangulates you against other people on the down-low on purpose to make you feel de-centered and insecure.
This person isolates you from other people in your life by setting you up to distrust others and dependant on them because your circle of support is getting smaller and smaller.
3. The Unfit to play with People Classic Manipulator will lie to you and then make you feel like a crazy person for noticing.
You know, gaslighting…
Another one of those internet popular psycho-phrases.
This person will lie and one of two things will happen.
Either they will make you feel like a crazy paranoid bitch for even considering they’d be even remotely dishonest when clearly they are OR they will blame you for figuring out they lied because you didn’t trust them. Seriously, what’s wrong with you???
The lies themselves become weapons that keep you feeling unstable and uncertain. You always feel like you can’t trust yourself when really you shouldn’t trust the other person.
And The Unfit to play with People Classic Manipulator knows they stand a better chance of controlling you if you don’t ever feel stable. Better you second guess yourself than them.
4. The Unfit to play with People Classic Manipulator will make their behavior your fault.
“Yeah, we got in a fight in front of your family. I shouldn’t have yelled that way. But you should have known better than to bring up that thing about the mortgage payment before we went over there. You know I’m tired and stressed.”
That’s not an apology. It kind of sorta sounds like one, but it’s not. It’s blame-shifting.
“If you hadn’t made me so mad, I would have never hit you.”
“If you’d given me any attention, I wouldn’t have been talking to her. You made me feel invisible. She sees me.”
“If you hadn’t spent so much money, I wouldn’t have gotten us behind on our bills.”
“If you weren’t such a drama queen I wouldn’t have gotten so worked up like that.”
The Unfit to play with People Classic Manipulator doesn’t ever really own it – they deflect it and in the process make you feel like something is wrong with you.
5. The Unfit to play with People Classic Manipulator will build history into your relationship with layers of really meaningful apologies.
Ask any woman who’s been in a physically abusive relationship and she’ll tell you it’s never better than after he beats her and he is trying to convince her not to leave. That cycle becomes an addiction and that addiction seals the deal for the Unfit to play with People Classic Manipulator.
Not all abuse is physical abuse but all abusers are very good at the apology tour. Making up is hard to do, but it’s also very seductive. The Unfit to play with People Classic Manipulator knows that if they can get you to love them again after stomping on your heart or self-esteem once, they will have a very good chance of pulling it off again.
And all of those ups and downs become a part of your story, the history you share together. The Unfit to play with People Classic Manipulator knows those cycles bind you together and it gets less and less likely you’ll come to your senses everytime they make you believe the lie that it’ll never happen again.
More by Lisa:
Lisa is an LOA Relationship Coach. She helps clients leverage Law of Attraction to get the relationships they dream about and build the lives they want. Lisa is the author of the newly released hit book, Score Your Soulmate and How to Escape from Relationship Hell and The Passion Plan.
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