Sam Vaknin’s Instagram Epigrams (archive only)
Narcissism with Vaknin on Instagram (active account)
Euphemisms and Orwellian
Newspeak are nothing new. The Nazis “resettled” the
Jews in the east and then gave them “showers”.
But modern technology has taken it to a whole different level: most Facebook friends are total strangers, people post likes on death announcements, few YouTube subscribers watch the channels they are subscribed to (compared to print subscribers, for example).
poaching is mating strategy in societies or periods
when there is gender imbalance or asymmetrical eligibility criteria in mate
Examples: active flirting and courting, sexting and camming (cybersex), trying to stop the couple from spending time together, and pointing out negative qualities of the romantic rival.
Davies, A. P., & Shackelford, T. K. (2017). Don't you wish your partner was hot like me?: The effectiveness of mate poaching across relationship types considering the relative mate-values of the poacher and the partner of the poached. Personality and Individual Differences, 106, 32-35.
Lemay Jr, E. P., & Wolf, N. R. (2016). Human mate poaching tactics are effective: Evidence from a dyadic prospective study on opposite-sex “friendships”. Social Psychological and Personality Science, 7(4), 374-380.
Schmitt, D. P., & Buss, D. M. (2001). Human mate poaching: Tactics and temptations for infiltrating existing mateships. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 80, 894–917.
Belu CF, O'Sullivan LF. Once a Poacher Always a Poacher? Mate Poaching History and its Association with Relationship Quality. J Sex Res. 2020 May;57(4):508-521. doi: 10.1080/00224499.2019.1610150. Epub 2019 May 20. PMID: 31106590.
Davies, A. P. C., Shackelford, T. K., & Hass, G. R. (2007) ‘When a “poach” is not a poach: Re-defining human mate poaching and re-estimating its frequency’ Archives of Sexual Behavior, 36, 702-716.
Mogilski, J. K. & Wade, T. J. (2023) ‘Friendship as a Relationship Infiltration Tactic during Human Mate Poaching’ Evolutionary Psychology, 11 (4), 926-943.
Schmitt, D. P., International Sexuality Description Project (2004) ‘Patterns and Universals of Mate Poaching Across 53 Nations: The Effects of Sex, Culture, and Personality on Romantically Attracting Another Person's Partner.’ Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 86(4), 560-584.
Schmitt, D. P., & Shackelford, T. K. (2003) ‘Nifty ways to leave your lover: The tactics people use to entice and disguise the process of human mate poaching’ Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 29, 1018-1035.
wave feminism and sex positivity are
transitioning from cults to mass psychegenic illnesses. New phenomena are
emerging among young women that are beyond disturbing.
Sex positivity openly espouses experimenting with prostitution and pornography as modes of self-exploration and self-identity.
Young women take to keeping scorecards of blowjobs they give strangers or the nationalities of their conquests (trying to cover the atlas).
Now cheating is emerging as a form of female empowerment - especially if the hapless partner is compelled to forgive and make up.
On forums and private chats alike women brag about their extradyadic exploits and are lauded and toasted by their peers with every “victory”. “Women power” and “women, go” are common refrains.
Toxic masculinity is a misogynistic late response to misandrist toxic femininity, not the other way around.
Men’s minds and values - already warped by millennia of domination over women - are twisted out of kilter by recent behavioral trends among women which amount to subclinical psychopathy.
Promiscuity is confined to about 20% of men and women who are sociosexually unrestricted or permissive.
But their values - rather, lack thereof - are now becoming the dominant sexual scripts for everyone.
Intermittent reinforcement creates ambivalence and dissonance. The abuser is perceived as TWO separate people.
Ambivalence and dissonance yield intolerable anxiety.
To ameliorate anxiety, you might fantasize about the abuser being dead.
Killing the hated external object preserves the loved internal object.
Another mechanism is to preserve both the external and the internal objects by redirecting your hate at yourself.
In the past, until the 1960s, people perceived sex as a must and a should. Something women had to provide in
return for money or protection.
Nowadays, sex is perceived by men and women alike as a wish or a need, part recreational and part medical.
Consequently, sex is commoditized and anonymized, rendered less goal-oriented or transactional.
psychology is manipulating someone to act in a specific
way by deceptively stating fake beliefs, values, and opinions or views. It is
based of triggering reactance and strategic self-anticonformity.
Techniques of Reverse Psychology:
Challenging: prove me wrong
Challenging: prove me right
Denigrating (underdog injustice)
The horror show that is modern sexuality is the gift that keeps giving.
Enemies with benefits is a new trend: seeking out your worst detractors and haters and then proceeding to sleep with them time and again. What’s the point? No one is quite sure.
A much older trend, well-documented in the literature:
Young women feel like they have prostituted themselves when they have had sex while sober. Even with an intimate partner.
According to studies, modern women believe that it is shameful to have sex with strangers or even intimate partners while NOT under the influence - but totally understandable and excusable when drunk (“I was drunk, I didn’t know what I was doing or I was taken advantage of”).
The role of substance abuse (mainly alcohol) in the resolution of cognitive dissonance has become so entrenched that a majority of women now cannot have sex at all unless they are intoxicated.
Cerebral narcissism is a relatively stable
construct across the lifespan. It involves early life sublimation so massive
and all-pervasive that it renders the cerebral asexual, all but eradicating his
sex drive (arrested sexual development).
Sensing his abnormality, potential sex partners shun the often creepy and robotic cerebral. In return, he conjures up a defensive ideology: celibacy is evidence of superior strength and women are contemptible.
Cerebrals become somatic following a collapse: when they can no longer garner supply by placing their intellect on public display or when offered an extremely rare opportunity to obtain quick fixes of narcissistic supply via sex.
As somatics, erstwhile cerebrals resemble sex addicts: from zero to hero.
But there is another reason for such a startling transformation: age and looming death.
The cerebral narcissist attempts to deny his age and fend off his ineluctable demise by having sex, preferably with much younger partners.
The cerebral being a narcissist, the sex is compulsive and autoerotic (masturbatory). The partners are mostly fungible and forgettable except when they are mentally ill (borderlines, for example) and cater to the narcissist’s grandiosity as a “healer” or “fixer”.
The shared fantasies then offered to these partners often incorporate a fresh start typical of younger ages: relocation, marriage, children, incessant travel, or a long-term relationship.
The cerebral turned somatic frantically thrashes about, trying to make up for lost time and missed sexual and romantic opportunities.
But as he inexorably declines, it becomes harder and harder to maintain the delusional self-deception and the cerebral ends up, often alone, in a degenerative schizoid state.
People with unrestricted sociosexuality (promiscuous, dissociative, dysregulated) are typically also
subclinical psychopaths. Those who are not are frequently ego dystonic: they
regret the sex and go through bouts of shame and guilt.
As time passes, to ameliorate the anticipatory anxiety (“I am lapsing again”) as well as the cognitive and other dissonances, the latter sort begin to avoid situations and activities that lead to sex (constriction). In many cases, they end up being atomized, self-sufficient, and schizoid.
This is a common outcome in Borderline and Histrionic personality disorders - but not in somatic ego-syntonic narcissism.
The Borderline’s engulfment or enmeshment anxiety has to do with her internalized bad object: the lifelong introjects that keep informing her how unworthy, unloveable, and inadequate she is.
Exposure to messages that countermand the bad object creates dissonance and the aforementioned anxiety. This leads to withdrawal, aggression, and avoidant behaviors.
People pleasers, borderlines, and codependents
have a constricted
life: they subsist only through others and for
others, vicariously, by proxy. Their identity is determined externally and is
consequently sometimes disturbed.
If you suffer from this syndrome, to get better:
1. Establish a people-free time and zone. Banish all people from this space and from your thoughts for at least 1 hour a day;
2. Introduce structure into your life by embarking on a consuming task or assignment or by adopting a hobby;
3. Stop being emotionally invested in the past or in the future. Focus exclusively on the present. Use techniques like mindfulness, if need be.
When faced with the Borderline incessant and
injurious approach-avoidance, tell
I am always here for you.
You are and always will be dear to me.
If I place boundaries it is not only for my self-protection but also in order to be strong for both of us
I will accept and respect any decision you make.
One of the most common attribution errors is the mistaken identification of one’s introjects with
The internal objects and voices that populate our inner world (automatic negative thoughts ANTs are a class of such voices) are not a part of our core identity - but they appear to us to be so.
Therapies - from CBT to schema and gestalt therapies - silence these echos of meaningful others.
Women feel that men are interested only in
sex and that they have to give sex to secure male
attention and ameliorate male aggression.
This has always been the state of affairs between men and women.
But in the past few decades, the situation got out of hand because:
Men now feel entitled to free no strings attached sex. They become hostile if they don’t get it.
It doesn’t help that about 20% of women are dysregulated and mind numbingly promiscuous. They spoil men and ruin it for the other 80%.
I blame fourth wave feminism and the sex positivity movement for the mess we are in. It is a cult, a victimhood identity movement, narcissistic, borderline psychopathic.
Sex positivity is an anti-scientific pseudo-science. The ultimate con artistry.
Women objectify themselves for the sake of predatory men - and call it female empowerment.
Most studies regard promiscuity as a life-long addiction. It can disappear even for decades
but then erupts again.
Like alcoholism or drug addiction. It is very unsafe to partner with a promiscuous person:
Their cheating rate is 3 times higher
They break up 5 times more often
They rarely truly commit
Sooner or later they become promiscuous again.
There is no promiscuous “nature” (except in very rare desire disorders). It is always a reaction to the environment.
Some people react to environmental pressures and temptations with promiscuity - others don’t.
If the behavior stops prior to age 18, the prognosis is a bit better - but not by much.
A large majority of promiscuous adolescents are subclinical psychopaths and have a borderline personality organization.
Subclinical psychopathy is lifelong. Borderline ameliorates with age.
Partnering up with someone who has a history of promiscuity even in puberty is Russian roulette.
This is why men avoid women with a high body count (unless they are lied to). Women actually avoid promiscuous men, too - but the sexual double standard precludes a typecasting of men as “promiscuous”.
This is also why women egregiously lie about their body count. They cut it down by an average of 70%.
We have outsourced most functions of the
traditional family: education, healthcare, etc. Now we are
Young people, faced with an overwhelming cognitive dissonance, have redefined sex to exclude everything except penetration while sober. The rest is “not sex” so, it is rarely considered to be cheating or promiscuous.
Open relationships are already the norm in the LGBTQA+ community (60% of “couples”).
The hookup Gen Z are adopting it as a solution in increasing numbers: they pursue gig sex mostly with strangers (because sex is the opposite of intimacy which they dread and are not skilled at).
Money and a single child are confined to the “relationship”. But the youth’s conception of a “relationship” has more to do with sharing economic burdens: roommates, basically.
Men are willing to sacrifice everything for novelty and conquest. At heart, men are hunters and explorers. They would give up
on a good relationship and qualitative sex just to impulsively experience a new
body, however briefly.
Confronted with this unstable reality, women lie to themselves: “He is just a Platonic friend” (a mythical creature), or “I give him love and addictive sex, so he will never stray” (of course he will, given the opportunity).
Women seek safety. This is why hypergyny (hypergamy) is rank nonsense. Women will never speculate or gamble their secure base on a greener grass. Better one bird in a woman’s cage than ten on any tree.
Women do tend to cheat and bail out of relationships in which they are the primary breadwinners or the partner is an inconsistent provider.
Since the educational attainment of women exceeds that of men, their lifelong earnings will at some point surpass those of their partners. This bodes ill for marriage, family, and other gender-based institutions.
POV (point of view) is the outcome of his internal dynamics,
especially the compulsive need to devalue and discard you.
Here is how he sees you:
You have changed
I am the victim
You are not self-aware
You are self-destructive and you want to drag me with you
You are disloyal
You are looking for alternatives
You are out to get me
You are after my money
You lie, deceive, and cheat
You entrapped me
You never mean what you say
You gaslight me
You hate me while I love you self-sacrificially
You humiliate me and shame me, you are malicious
Drunken promiscuity - the most common variant -
is often the confluenced outcome of five pathologies coupled with subclinical
1. Introject or object inconstancy
Out of sight - out of mind. The inability to maintain introjects of significant others or the incapacity to trust the permanence of meaningful others in one’s life.
2. Transitional or comfort objectifying
The failure to attach to or bond with or cathect (emotionally invest in) other people (to transition to object relations). Using other people’s bodies the way small kids use teddy bears or favorite blankets.
3. Identity disturbance
Fluctuating between mutually exclusive beliefs, values, behavior patterns, cognitions, and emotions (schema) owing to the absence of a core identity because of …
4. Pervasive dissociation
Amnesia, derealization, and depersonalization (feeling empty and unreal when alone or during sex).
5. Bad object
The punishment and denigration of an internalized bad object, egged on by punitive and sadistic introjects and a harsh inner critic (“I am a whore and I should trash myself”).
Put together, these mutually-reinforcing dynamics result in compulsive attention seeking and acquisition (conquests) to the point of indiscriminate people pleasing on the one hand or predatory behaviors on the other hand.
Sex is used as a currency with which to purchase a temporary reprieve from this internal inferno.
A new twist in the saga of youth sexuality: they hookup for a night and then they block each other (the
most hostile act online). What gives?
The young fail to find or hold steady jobs (as distinct from gigs). They cannot afford to live on their own, acquire an education, or have a family.
Consequently falling in love and getting attached not to mention having a relationship are the greatest imaginable threats to the meager future of a young person.
The young describe as “clinging” and “needy” anyone who attempts to communicate after a typical few minutes of inebriated sex.
They are also conflicted about their own sexual behavior. They often feel degraded. To prevent all this from happening, they block each other. Blocking is as if the sex had never happened.
Promiscuity has different
etiologies in men and women.
Men are promiscuous because they feel special and, therefore, entitled to sex. It revolves around the wielding of power or control.
Most promiscuous women seek to validate and affirm an internalized and introjected bad object (“I am a whore, so I deserve to be degraded and punished for it”).
In other words: unrestricted or permissive sociosexuality in men has narcissistic roots while in women, it is masochistic.
This holds true even when the woman or the man is a subclinical psychopath and claims to pursue and enjoy the sex for its own sake.
In promiscuous women (for example: borderlines and histrionic), this innate masochism breeds ambivalence: dependence on men and sex coupled with a resentment or even hatred of both.
In the story “Cat Person” by Kristen Roupenian,
the 20 years old protagonist is described as having had “not that many sex
partners”, only … seven!
So, having sex with 7 men by age 20 is a lamentable deficiency. It is implied that her inexperience is to her detriment in her - drunken - dating life.
The new normal is inversion of the old normal, a mutually exclusive mirror image.
The same applies to relationships. They are perceived as threats to career and to hedonistic independence.
“What’s in it for me, what am I getting out of it”, are the key touchstones.
Patience, perseverance, compromise, communication, intimacy, and endurance are all obsolete skills.
Another example are children.
A sizable chunk of women remain childless by choice and many others eschew men altogether and opt to be single mothers.
But a child is perceived as just another shiny gadget: a way to alleviate the ennui and angst of modern life, a form of entertainment.
When exposed to the vagaries of childrearing and the ornery nature of kids, wannabe mothers confess to being far less happy than their childless peers.
Many of them begin to resent the child, regard it as an encumbrance or even a persecutory object, a form of insidious female-disempowering enslavement.
Plus ca change is wrong in this case. The new normal is a cataclysmic and unprecedented negation of human institutions, values, and history hitherto.
regret one night stands way more than men do. A
majority of them experience shame, guilt, and remorse the morning after.
Yet, both men and women find it difficult to orgasm in casual sex (women considerably more than men, aka the orgasm gap).
Men underreport bad sex because they regard themselves as self-appointed guardians to the quality of sex. Bad romp? Usually perceived to be the man’s fault.
But why do women keep going for this kind of repellent sexual encounters, very often with men they are not even attracted to?
They have to compete with other women in a male dominated buyers’ market. Immediate, unconditional sex is the only currency. Better get a first mover advantage over your peers and younger women.
Winning over a man - any man, however undesirable he is and however fleeting the attention - is a booster to self-esteem.
Women whose background is religious, traditional, or conservative - including immigrants - feel painfully conflicted and dissonant about the immense peer pressure to conform and not be a prude (or a slut). They are also more prone to submit to male desires and dictates, dissociating and reverting to “auto pilot” as they succumb.
Another reason for the orgasm gap is that most women seek connection and aim to please their partners in sex while most men masturbate with female bodies, emulating crude pornography, their only sex education.
Some people stray and have sex with others in order to
preserve and persevere in a long-term obsessed and
Extradyadic sex in such couples (in the wake of drinking or substance abuse) serves to exact revenge on the partner, restore a power symmetry within the couple, cater to unmet emotional or sexual needs, and affirm an internalized bad object (the disparaging partner’s point of view).
Such promiscuous, unboundaried, and sexually self-trashing behavior typically follows a period of loyal faithfulness met with traumatizing rejection and abandonment by the partner.
Whenever offered intimacy by the external instrumentalized and objectified sex partners (an invitation to stay longer or sleep over or meet again), the cheater reacts aggressively, recoils, and hurries back to her primary partner to reaffirm their dysfunctional bond.
Such a relationship dynamic is conducive to an inversion of traditional stereotypical gender roles: women become sexually predatory and men react with dysregulation. This is especially the case when both have daddy or mommy issues.
Promiscuous women can be divided to users and “hos.”
Users use men - not the other way around!
They objectify and instrumentalize men to defy authority figures or partners, exact revenge, triangulate, or secure attention, validation, and sex.
Users TAKE from men what they need and pay for it with sex. It is 100% transactional. They are masculine in all ways.
“Hos” or sluts NEED men all the time. They are weak. Nonautonomus and nonagentic. They GIVE sex to men but rarely take back. They need to be accepted and affirmed by men. They exist only around men. They act stereotypically feminine.
Narcissists cheat on their spouses, commit adultery and have extramarital affairs and liaisons for a variety of reasons which reflect disparate psychodynamic processes:
1. In the quest for narcissistic supply, the somatic narcissist resorts to serial sexual conquests.
2. Narcissists are easily bored (they have a low boredom threshold) and they have a low tolerance for boredom. Sexual dalliances alleviate this nagging and frustrating ennui. The quest for novelty, diversions, and thrills – a vacation from his own life - is combined with a journey of self-exploration and discovery that involves “filling in the gaps” in the narcissist’s biography: a missed adolescence, an old flame, a new aspect of his personality.
3. Narcissists maintain an island and focus of stability in their life, but all the other dimensions of their existence are chaotic, unstable, and unpredictable. This "twister" formation serves many emotional needs which I expound upon elsewhere. Thus, a narcissist may be a model employee and pursue a career path over decades even as he cheats on his wife and fritters their savings away.
4. Narcissists feel superior and important and so entitled to be above the law and to engage in behaviors that are frowned upon and considered socially unacceptable in others. They reject and vehemently resent all limitations and conditions placed upon them by their partners. They act on their impulses and desires unencumbered by social conventions and strictures.
5. Marriage, monogamy, and child-bearing and rearing are common activities that characterize the average person. The narcissist feels robbed of his uniqueness by these pursuits and coerced into the relationship and into roles - such as a husband and a father - that reduce him to the lowest of common denominators. This narcissistic injury leads him to rebel and reassert his superiority and specialness by maintaining extramarital affairs.
6. Narcissists are control freaks. Having a relationship implies a give-and-take and a train of compromises which the narcissist acutely interprets to mean a loss of control over his life. To reassert control, the narcissist initiates other relationships in which he dictates the terms of engagement (love affairs).
7. Narcissists are terrified of intimacy. Their behavior is best characterized as an approach-avoidance repetition compulsion. Adultery is an excellent tool in the attempt to retard intimacy and resort to a less threatening mode of interaction.
There are two types of triangulation (using a third party to manage the emotional, intimacy, and transactional aspects of a relationship): breakup and restorative.
Breakup triangulation involves overt and ostentatious cheating with a third party in conjunction with other egregious misbehavior. Its aim is to irrevocably break up with a current partner.
Why triangulate rather than simply terminate? A myriad reasons: revenge, rage, community property, inability to let go (codependency), restoring the cheater's self-esteem, feeling desirable and alive again, obtaining succor and ersatz intimacy, or uncertainty about one's true wishes.
But usually, it is simply the desire to cast one's mate as the villain who ended it all because of he is insanely jealous and not magnanimous or empathic enough to forgive and understand.
Restorative triangulation has the exact opposite goal: to revive the relationship by provoking an emotional response from the jilted partner. Such triangulation involves the mere favorable mention of another person, hints at possible misconduct or compromising circumstances, or, at a maximum, aggressive flirting and non-penetrative sex acts, such as kissing, petting (making out), or hugging.
This is me (Sam Vaknin) at age 2 or younger. My mother breastfed me and then brain
fed me. By age 2, I was reading broadsheet newspapers and magazines. By age 4,
I completed 30 volumes of encyclopedias.
But this was the public facade. The horror started unfolding round about then and went on for another 12 years, every single day, several hours a day, every minute of every hour.
Mind contorting, extreme, life threatening, and sadistic physical torture coupled with vicious sniping and verbal abuse. I am lucky to have become a psychologist rather than a serial killer.
In the concentration camp called Home,
we report in striped pajamas
to the barefeet commandant,
Our Mother orchestrating
our daily holocaust.
Burrowing her finger-
-nails through my palms,
a scream frozen between us,
a stalactite of terror
in the green caves of her eyes
there, sentenced to forced labour:
to mine her veins of hatred
to shovel her contempt
to pile scorn upon scorn
beating(s) a path.
At noon, Our Mother
leads us to the chambers
naked, ripples of flesh
she turns on the gas
and watches our hunger
as her food devours us.
In 1987, I discuss an array of topics - from business to politics, and from morality to the future in a wide-ranging interview with Galey Tsahal (IDF Radio Station).
Courtesy my brother, Sharon Shimon Vaknin.
I know to sweet talk and charm a woman like nobody else.
But, I hate to do it because it is like begging the woman for sex. Acting this way brings on a Narcissistic injury.
So, instead, I signal and broadcast to women:
“I don’t need or want anything you have to give. I am a self-sufficient god.
If you don’t recognize that it is a privilege to be with me, then you are stupid”.
When they start to triangulate in order to attract my attention and get a rise out of me, I push them to cheat (“fuck the other guy, see if I care”).
Then, when a women I love (a tiny minority) do cheat, it breaks my heart and I want to die. But I never show them that. My pride and defiance prevail. So, I keep losing them all.
This is how stupid narcissists are.
There is an odd dichotomy in men. On the one hand, most men are predatory. One third of them
admit that they would rape a woman if they could get away with it.
Men have sex with unconscious intoxicated women, underage terrified girls, mentally ill and intellectually challenged lasses. Anything goes.
In most casual sexual encounters, men force women to engage in degrading and painful sex acts.
About one quarter of first dates end in sexual assault: men become aggressive when denied sex.
But men also confess in studies to loneliness, seeking a long-term committed relationships, wanting to meet hookup partners more than once.
Men complain that women are now the ones who rebuff their advances, ghost and block them after a one night stand, refuse to date, and, in general, are heartless and emotionless sexual users. Men also use sex for nonautonomus reasons such as to boost their self-esteem or be accepted and accoladed by peers.
It is difficult to reconcile these two conflicting sets of data.