Poor Sebastian

August 29, 2011

This is the story of Sebastian, a young man who married a histrionic woman. If you were to look at a photo of Sebastian now, you would hardly recognize him from his former days. That’s because he’s been transformed by a master manipulator. She tells him how to dress, how to behave… even how to think.

Look closely at photos of them together and you will notice her arm is always over his shoulder, like a leash around his neck.  This subtle body language states who is in control of this relationship. What Sebastian doesn’t realize is he is on a very short leash.

Histrionics are control freaks. This is the only way they can soothe the overwhelming feelings of insecurity that have plagued them since childhood. Their experience has taught them that bad things happen when you lose control.

Histrionics have been abused their whole life. They suffer from C-PTSD (lifelong trauma). This means that normal and healthy defense-mechanisms have been cranked up to abnormal and unhealthy levels to ensure survival. That is why the histrionic is so brutal. A histrionic lives in a dog eat dog world. The histrionic will eat you alive.

Histrionics are predators. They look for people they think they can control. They look for submissive behavior. And if you’re not submissive enough, they will try to break you down. They will soften you up with sob stories.

They will tell you what a horrible family they have. They will tell you they were raped in college. They will tell you they have a mysterious disease that no doctor can find a cause or cure for. She will tell you horror stories of ex-boyfriends who were abusers and stalkers. She will convince you that everyone around her is crazy. Everyone except her. Then she will look to you to save her. She is the damsel in distress and you are her knight in shining armor. It is a fantasy role-play that few are able to resist.

Sebastian has no idea what he signed up for. He is clueless. He doesn’t know about BPD or HPD. He doesn’t know about C-PTSD. He doesn’t realize that he is under her spell. He doesn’t realize that she has him wrapped around her little pinky.

Sure, there were times he noticed that she was a little off. Moody at times. Quick temper. He noticed there were times when she was paranoid (on red alert). And then there were other times when she was careless (like a naive child). But he couldn’t put all the pieces together.

Histrionics are good at fooling most of the people most of the time. Everything is an illusion to fool people into thinking all is well. They can even fool themselves. But for this they must employ mind-bending tactics. They must resort to mind games to keep their partner in check. A partner in check is less likely to leave them. A partner in check will not question their ways. A partner in check is clueless. And that is exactly the way the histrionic likes it.

Because if Sebastian were to wisen up, things would get very hairy. If Sebastian were to start questioning her behavior, she would suddenly become insecure again. Because a partner that questions a histrionic is a sign that he is thinking for himself. It means she is losing control. And a histrionic control freak can not allow that.

If he insists on being his own man, she will find ways to knock him down to size. This is the process of devaluation. When a histrionic feels inferior, she will find a way to drag you down to her level. She wants you to feel as insecure as her. This is when the histrionic engages in acts of infidelity- sex with strange men she just met, maybe after a night of binge drinking. Such behavior has the added benefit of distancing them away from you and sabotaging the relationship. Crisis averted.

If Sebastian were smart enough to know what’s up, he would be quickly shown out the door. There would be no sentimental good-byes. No thanks for the memories. He would be done. He would be expected to “move the fuck on”. And if he didn’t, she would accuse him of stalking her. She would accuse him of being abusive. False-accusations are the histrionic’s most potent weapons. Playing the victim is their first line of defense.

If Sebastian were to suggest she seek help, she would suggest he leave her alone. She would suggest that he was crazy. Everyone is crazy except her. Then she would slam the door, leaving him to reel in pain by himself. A histrionic leaves a relationship in a hurry to find someone else who will save her from this tragic life.

This is the histrionic’s MO. It is well-documented. But histrionics will fight tooth and nail to suppress the mountain of evidence. If you know a histrionic, you know this story well. Unfortunately, it is a true story. These are the telltale signs that you are in a relationship with a woman who suffers from histrionic personality disorder.

17 Responses to “Poor Sebastian”

  1. savorydish said

    On some level, a histrionic knows the harm they have caused others. Histrionics are notorious for abandoning relationships they have left in ruins. They are running away from SHAME.

    They will go through elaborate efforts to cover up their shame. Move to another city, change their identity, cut off communications, etc.

    The histrionic is a well-seasoned cover-up artist. She has a dedicated team of enablers and proxies who aid her in the process. They all have an interest in keep the truth under wraps.

    She compartmentalizes her past to stay in denial. Acknowledging her past means acknowledging shame. Part of the disorder is the need to cover up this shame.

    They are always compensating by creating false fronts of well-being. They want you to believe they are living a fabulous life. When in reality the shame is eating them from the inside-out.

    So now you know why poor Sebastian remains in the dark. By the time partners have seen the real histrionic, it is too late. When the act begins to crumble, the histrionic will act swiftly to destroy everything. The relationship will fall like a house of cards.

    Then Sebastian will be left wondering “what the hell just happened”. It takes a while for the fog to lift. Months. Partners often learn about HPD, after a relationship has ended tragically. Abandoned partners are looking for answers to behavior that defies explanation.

    • savorydish said

      Don’t expect the histrionic to accept blame. Expect them to project. Projection is how a histrionic copes with pain, shame and fears. If they accuse you of being abusive, it is because they know how abusive they are to you. They will lash out at you while accusing you of being hostile. And if they accuse you of infidelity, you can be pretty sure they have cheated on you or they are planning to. Accusations are a window into a histrionic’s troubled soul.

  2. savorydish said

    Histrionic abuse attributes most of its destructive powers to the histrionic’s ability to pose as someone who loves you and cares about your well-being. But of course the histrionic only cares about their needs. They are in too much pain to consider the pain they are causing others.

    A histrionic is the worst kind of abuser. The one who softens you up with sweet kisses. And then when your defenses are down, they ruthlessly stab you in the back.

    This is the mind fuck that all histrionics indulge in. You will be amazed how much damage the histrionic can do in such a short amount of time. When you are a product of an abusive environment, abusive behavior becomes second nature.

    By the time the relationship has run its course, the victim of this cruel abuse is left scarred for life.

  3. savorydish said

    The apple does not fall very far from the tree. A histrionic abuses loved ones because this is what they grew up with. They grew up watching mommy and daddy treat each other like shit. It is ingrained in their programming. This coupled with hypersensitivity and impulsiveness is a formula for an abusive relationship.

    Without years and years of dedicated treatment, abusive behavior is inevitable. Histrionics will try to curb their tendencies. But without treatment, their efforts are futile. If they won’t even admit to their abusive tendencies or they insist on living in denial, then there is zero chance of improvement.

    If Sebastian were smart, he’d get out of Dodge. But there’s a pretty good chance that he is under the co-dependent spell. If his partner were a decent human being, she would fill him in. But the histrionic only cares about her needs. An untreated histrionic is too selfish to think about loved ones. So Sebastian is screwed.

    • savorydish said

      HPD is a disorder that relies on denial to keep the HP going. Like the borderline, the histrionic is an emotionally damaged person. But the HP is much better at creating an illusion of well-being. At first glance, the HP seems to have it all. But this is a shell. Inside the HP is slowly dying. HPs have fooled themselves into believing they can just ignore their wounds. Cover them up. But covered emotions come out with a vengeance. The histrionic is a ticking time bomb waiting to blow.

      • savorydish said

        So how does a person get involved with a histrionic?

        Well first, you have to have a predisposition for co-dependent relationships. How did you build a tolerance for this type of histrionic behavior? The answer is in your past.

        The histrionic is very seductive. So it is not hard to fall for them. They work really hard to get people’s attention. (think Marilyn Monroe)

        A histrionic is basically a borderline who has learned to adapt. They have mutated to survive. An ugly duck turned into a beautiful swan. But this is a black swan. Underneath the beauty and charm is a darkness that infects others. Histrionics bring out the best and worst in people. The histrionic is insidious in the way she destroys people’s lives. A histrionic has a way of bringing you down to their level.You never see it coming. You never know you are being used and abused until the fog has lifted.

      • savorydish said

        Like a borderline, the histrionic reacts in extreme ways, abusive ways. Seeking attention is at the heart of the disorder. But it is important to note that this is not your normal attention-seeking behavior. This is a person who goes to bizarre extremes to seek attention (see Octo-Mom or Balloon Boy’s parents). These people will literally do ANYTHING to get this attention. Including the unthinkable (Casey Anthony). They seek ANY attention, good or bad.

        Histrionics are troublemakers. They cause destruction wherever they go. They suck people into their vortex and then spit them out. Those closest to them are left in ruins. The closer you are the more damage they inflict. Therefore, it is in your best interest NOT to get close to a histrionic.

        The histrionic is often unaware of the abuse they are inflicting on loved ones, because they are consumed by the need to seek attention. This obsession prevents them from considering the harm they are causing others.

      • savorydish said

        Insidious is the perfect way to describe histrionic abuse.

        The histrionic’s mind is so warped by lifelong abuse, they don’t even realize they are being abusive until someone points it out. They don’t realize they have been abusive to a loved one until the relationship is left in tatters. And then they are so overwhelmed with shame, they run in fear. They deny all past misdeeds. They cover up the evidence.

        This is a person who was raised to believe that dirt is meant to be swept under the rug. Skeletons were meant to stay in the closet. This is why a histrionic rarely seeks help or gets better. Without acknowledgment of their past, there is no hope for the future.

      • savorydish said

        Like all abusers, a histrionic is basically a coward.

        They recruit proxies to do their dirty work because they fear confrontation. They instigate hostility and then they play the victim.

        Cowards seek passive-aggressive ways to inflict pain. They hit and run. Histrionics are notorious runaways (see runaway brides). They fear intimacy. They fear pain. They fear they will be revealed. So they inflict pain and then they run. The coward is the worst kind of abuser.

      • savorydish said

        Poor Sebastian has signed up for a lifetime of this abuse. That is, if the relationship lasts that long. Eventually the fear of intimacy will be too much to bear. She will get bored. The high of the honeymoon period is long gone. She will start to feel trapped and suffocated. This is when the histrionic will start to be abusive. When a histrionic is bored she creates conflict and chaos. This is how they kill relationships. This is why they abuse loved ones.

      • savorydish said

        Poor Sebastian is being played for a fool. He doesn’t know what he has walked into, because histrionics are con artists. In the beginning, they play nice. They seduce you and make you feel like the hero. When they want you to stick around, histrionics are sweet as honey. They become the woman of your dreams. But as soon as the fear of intimacy creeps in, the honey turns bitter and the dream becomes a nightmare.

        As long as they think they have you on a short leash, they can continue the act. But when insecurity starts to creep back in, the histrionic will play the push and pull game- alternately pulling you in closer and pushing you away. This is the fear of abandonment battling with the fear of intimacy. This push-pull mind-fuck is a major part of their abuse. It’s what drives partners crazy.

        The histrionic reveals their abusive side little by little. They are testing the waters. Seeing how much you can take. If you threaten to leave, they will break down into tears and beg you to stay. If this ever happens to you, RUN. Do not stay and hope things will get better. It can only get worse. You have just received a small sample of what you can expect more of down the line. This is the real histrionic. A person who has been abused their whole life becomes an abuser for life. And you are the abusee.

        If you stay you are giving them the green light. You are rewarding their behavior. You will see this pattern of abuse followed by feigned remorse over and over again. All abusers use this act. Don’t fall for it. Or you are basically condoning your own abuse. You are locking yourself into an abusive pattern (abuse followed by make-up). You are making yourself emotionally vulnerable to a person who has abusive tendencies hardwired into their brain. You are signing away your own well-being.

      • savorydish said

        Poor Sebastian rushed into marriage with a histrionic. And that shows some disturbing impulsiveness on his part. He fell for the act- hook,line, and sinker.

        Something is not right with Sebastian. A normal healthy person would have slammed on the brakes. But Sebastian was a willing participant. And that shouts co-dependency. As good as the histrionic is at covering up her dysfunction, a normal healthy person would have picked up the fact that something was not right with his bride-to-be. The fact that Sebastian tolerates her behavior and her drama means he has been conditioned to accept such behavior. And that means Sebastian is as troubled as his bride.

  4. Once bitten said

    Very good article and comments.
    I’ve just been well and truly mindfucked by a woman over a very short period of time, two weeks whom I now realise is HPD.
    Lucky for me I escaped, no contact for a week now.
    It’s always the same story though with HPD relationships the seductive siren luring the mug onto the rocks then leaving them to die.
    More twists and turns than snakes and ladders and NOTHING EVEN HAPPENED! It seems so profound and intimate but on reflection there is NOTHING there just a hologram pretending to have substance.

  5. Once bitten said

    Here I am another two weeks on and I’m constantly thinking about what happened with my HPD ‘friend’.

    Such a lack of closure or explanation about what her motives were. I’m left raw and exposed whilst she’s doing who knows what. I realise now it’s not about what she was so much as what she dug out of me emotionally, hurts from childhood, but then having ripped off these psychological scabs she just left me bleeding whilst at the same time demanding I help poor little her with her self created problems that can never be fixed.

    The deal seems to be the HPD demands you give everything but it barely registers as you throw all into her bottomless well of discontent and at the same time the co-dependent, me, waits expectantly like a starving puppy for mistress to toss him a bone or a crumb of comfort just like as a child I must have done from withholding parents.

    And although I have not had any contact for over three weeks now and contact was only for two weeks I’m still strangely waiting for ‘something’ to come my way even though rationally I know it won’t and even if it did it would be another toxic dose of heaven and hell.

    I can only imagine what long term partners of HPD and Borderlines have to go through.

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