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Narcissists and stalking

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Narcissists and stalking

Postby tryingtolearn » Wed Apr 13, 2011 10:03 pm

I just stumbled on to this forum and have found it really useful in trying to understand NPD. I am interested in asking (particularly the self aware N's here) about stalking. I have a former coworker (who a psychologist has told me is NPD) and friend (he is male and I am female) showing up at places I frequent including my children's school at their pick up times (at least 3 times under the guise of exercising in the area). This has been going on for 6 weeks and is scary and unwanted. I was NC for 4.5 weeks prior to that. I quit my job because of his behavior towards me (bullying, harassment, and emotionally abusive IMO) and I told our mutual boss all of this. I tried to keep it quiet but he was enraged and looked bad. He started a vicious smear campaign to discredit me. A few people believed him, but because his reputation in our town is bad (affair(s), bankruptcy, divorce) his credibility isn't great. I think he was romantically interested in me over the years and I was a great source. I listened to his woes day after day for years.

Is it common for N's to stalk? Any thoughts on his motivations? Is he trying to re establish a relationship? Punish? Both? I could really use any insight anyone out there has. I have researched stalking and half of it says call the police immediately and the other half says that will make the situation much worse. Thoughts? The psychologist I spoke with said to ignore him unless he threatens me. He has threatened others and grabbed me once, but so far the stalking is him looking at me and driving by. Sometimes he is smiling at me almost euphorically, sometimes he glares, other times he stays stony faced. Is this part of the idealizing/devaluing cycle? I think he has a girlfriend but does that even matter to him? Has anyone had a similar experience? What should I do? Thank you.
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Re: Narcissists and stalking

Postby orion13213 » Sat Apr 16, 2011 3:43 am

Many acquaintance stalkers like your former co-worker ARE often either NPD or BPD. You want to be careful how you respond, because premature restraining orders, or even just having the cops come out and field interview the guy you can enrage him and unintentionally escalate the behavior.

On the other hand, if you feel you or your family is in danger then you need to call the police right away. I find it disturbing that you already had to leave your job. This might have empowered him.

Restraining orders are usually civil processes so you might want to consult with an experienced restraining order lawyer now, as well.

Sometimes before actual violence occurs to you or a family member, they will vandalize your property like your car, etc.

Gavin deBecker is a well known personal security expert who has extensive experience in stopping stalking and domestic violence. His company has a website page that might be of assistance to you: https://www.gavindebecker.com/resources/resource_list/

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Re: Narcissists and stalking

Postby maria » Sat Apr 16, 2011 7:30 am

i read somewhere that schizophrenics and narcissists are the two most important groups of stalkers - schizophrenics because they make the victim part of their delusions and narcissists for revenge/control purposes.

so the aim of his actions is to get a handle on your emotions, creep you out, make you think about him, anything. i agree wiht the above person that as long as he doesn't give any signs of doing more than just lurking around, you shouldn't do anything because any reaction is a sign of control and at this stage will rather provoke him. the real battle is in your head: Try to not care or at least act as if you don't. if nothing happens he will get bored and look for other sources of supply. but, obviously, there are limits to what you should put up with...

i once met a person whom i assume to be a narcissist who went through a cycle of idealization - devaluation - creepy stalking with me. after he had devalued me he suddenly came on to me again and i was creeped - how could he think this would work, does he think i don't have a memory? he's crazy! and my discomfort was visible so that's what he went for, lurking around, showing up funny places, also sometimes smiling, sometimes stone-faced. it wasn't very extreme but i tend to mentally obsess about stuff so after 4 days i became insomniac worrying about this.

i got very angry, didn't want him to play such an important role in my life. i overthought the situation. he is extremely intelligent and still the most subtle and creative manipulator i have met, but he appeared to have limits when it comes to being violent/physically forceful. so i could rate the situation as not actually dangerous and decided to not give him what he wanted, the creep reaction. so next time he showed up i just beamed at him sheepishly and waved. he was baffled. from then on, i adopted the sheep policy, like i was too dumb to even realize he's playing games. stalkign stopped instantaneously.

now don't take this as a typical example - maybe it was so easy because i was just a side project in his plot for world domination (i was). also the best way of implementing "i don't care" may vary between different people - i am an extrovert and a bit narcissistic myself, so adopting a particular emotional policy seemed reasonable but you really need the emotional self-control to stick with it despite his best efforts to break it down. for others, maybe not reacting at all will be easier and more effective. but the bottom line is that as long as bad things only happen in your head and not in real life, your real struggle is for control about your emotions.

so think for a moment about your reaction to his appearances - what will he see? you freezing, looking terrified? that makes it worth driving all across town! any form of interaction with him, any ambivalence inside you will feed him. if he is still looking for pretexts (like exercising) that indicates that his attempts are still bound by trying to appear normal - so i wouldn't assume he's dangerous for the moment. so don't react to his provocations. should he, however, actually use or threaten violence that's a whole different story.
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Re: Narcissists and stalking

Postby tryingtolearn » Tue Apr 19, 2011 10:18 pm

Thanks for both of your posts.
I read the chapter in Gavin deBecker's book on stalkers and it seems like he is a big "don't engage and enrage" proponent. He says don't look for truth and justice-just get away and stay safe. This guy showed up in person at a coffee shop where I meet my friends and was at the door when I was coming in the other day, but then he ran off. It seemed like an escalation and it freaked me out. So I anonymously called the police about filing a report and the courts about restraining orders. They gave me info and I decided to wait on it a day, and I am so glad I did. It turns out he had just had a baby with a woman who kicked him out of her house (he already has a bunch of kids he can't afford) and I had no idea about any of this because I have cut all contact with him and anyone I think he talks to. He started the stalking 2 weeks before the baby was born, and now it has slowed, I presume, because he is busy. If I had sent the police to investigate him I think it would have made matters much,much worse. I guess the stalking is because he needs old sources in a stressful time. I am not really sure about that though. So, if he is in fact not dangerous, I think the ignoring is for the best. If he gets scarier I can still go to the police and courts.

I chuckled at your image, maria, of pretending to be so clueless that it confused him. Your description of your situation was very familiar to me. It seems so CRAZY to me that he would show up smiling after all that has happened- it is very unnerving to say the least. If he knew how much this is bothering me I think he would be thrilled. I think you are right that the battle is in one's head after the stalking begins (which I suppose is the point). I am going to work on that. I am frustrated that I can't tell people that he is doing this because it will get back to him and probably empower him. That makes me feel very isolated, unsupported, stressed, and angry.

My question now to anyone out there is how purposeful or conscious are people with NPD? Sometimes I have an image of him sitting and twirling his fingers like an evil genius plotting this all out, and then there are times he seems more like a ball in a pinball machine just being bounced all over the place (reacting and chaotic). If the disorder is driving this behavior, does he have any idea why he behaves the way he does? Are there moments where a person with NPD gets it and then the denial sets in?
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Re: Narcissists and stalking

Postby orion13213 » Wed Apr 20, 2011 4:32 am

One possible psychological motivation: I don't know if the normal level of flirting that goes on between men and women in the workplace occurred between the two of you, but many stalkers can feel slighted, even wounded by these common place male-female interactions. Perhaps you eventually rejected him (or he perceived that you did) and this reminded him of the fundamental narcissitic injury that is at the core of his disorder (if he is in fact NPD). For most men and women casual flirting is a way to get through the day; but stalkers for whatever reason are often unable to play these normal idle romantic games, might feel like they are in love, become attatched through fantasy, obsessed, and eventually vengeful.

If he was the schizophrenic erotomanic type (as Maria described...the stranger convinced that you are in love with him) the smile would be perhaps an indication of bliss...that he was returning "your love," but since he is an acquaintance stalker the smile could indicate something more in line with vengeance...his satisfaction with intimidating you. Like I said before, he evidently was successful in getting you to quit your previous job, and if intimidation worked once for him...this could have empowered him and set up a future pattern.

Like deBecker and your shrink indicated you have been wise to seemingly ignore him, not give him any emotional supply, and not overreact with the police or a TRO, but keep all your resource options open (a lawyer, security if you have them where you work now, the police) just in case for whatever reason he escalates his behavior you can put a swift and effective end to it quickly. Also, keep a journal and document everything whenever possible: witnesses, security and / or police reports if you had to resort to them, etc.

If he uses alcohol or drugs these can cause him to lose the inhibitions he has and thus the situation could escalate.

Hopefully he will eventually give it up; the old saying "idle hands are the devil's workshop" applies here; it might be good that this guy has other things (another baby and more child support) to think about now.
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