Posted in Alienated children psychopathic parent, Are there psychopathic children?, Attachment, Security, Separation and Psychological Differentiation, Autopsy of the Narcissistic Parental Alienator, British Psychological Society's Division of Counselling Psychology in London, Carl Jung - psychological theorists, Parental Alienation PA

DIAGNOSTIC CRITERIA FOR VENGEFUL FATHER SYNDROME

Taken from:-http://mothersoflostchildren.org/2015/09/vengeful-father-syndrome/

Charles PragnelltoPsychopathy

DIAGNOSTIC CRITERIA FOR VENGEFUL FATHER SYNDROME

The most notable behaviors and attitudes manifested by vengeful fathers and which indicate Vengeful Father’s Syndrome.

1. CONTROL AND DOMINATION – The outstanding feature of Vengeful Father Syndrome is an obsessive and relentless drive for continuing control and domination over their former spouse and their children, who they view in terms of their personal ownership. In these cases, there is usually a history of spousal assault, rape, and a range of emotional, psychological, and physical maltreatment of their spouse and of their children, either directly or indirectly as a consequence of the spousal abuse. These are usually the factors which have led to the separation and ultimately to the divorce. Many such clinical examples case illustrations can be found in the Case Judgments in Family Law cases in all countries, as such Vengeful Fathers frequently use the law and the legal system as a means of enforcing their rights and demands and for continuing to persecute their victims, both mothers and children. They can also be found abundantly in the cases referred to voluntary organisations involved in Domestic Violence support services and child advocacy work
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2. LACK OF EMOTION AND ‘AFFECTIVE’ RESPONSES – Vengeful Fathers are notable for their absence of genuine emotions and feelings although some have developed relatively sophisticated methods of mimicking such attitudes and behaviors in order to appear `normal’;

3. LACK OF EMPATHY, COMPASSION, AND REMORSE – these are very significant features of the Vengeful Father who frequently obtain a schadenfreudic delight in observing the consequences of their behaviors in their victims’ responses and sufferings;

4. OBSESSIVELY DETERMINED TO `WIN’’ IN ANY FORM OF CONTEST, PARTICULARLY IN COURT PROCEEDINGS – THE VENGEFUL FATHER ALWAYS REQUIRES THAT HE IS PROVEN TO BE `RIGHT’ IN HIS VIEW OF THE WORLD, EVENTS, AND HIS PERCEPTIONS OF OTHERS – Vengeful fathers found considerable support in the conjectures and contentions of R.A. Gardner regarding Parental Alienation Syndrome during its period of being favored in some Family Courts. PAS provided an immediate vehicle by which the Vengeful Father could transfer blame onto the mother, when his children rejected and despised him for his cruel and uncaring behaviors towards them in the past and the children resisted any attempts to force them into contact or residency with him. It has become increasingly obvious that in many cases where Vengeful Fathers have alleged PAS, that in fact it was a clear and convincing case of Self-Alienation;

5. DECEIT, CUNNING, AND MANIPULATION – Vengeful Fathers often present and portray themselves to relatives, family friends, and significant others as the `Perfect father’. The purpose of this is to encourage others to believe that their former spouse is the defective partner and parent, or is `to blame’ for the relationship breakdown and to thereby isolate them from their social groups and communities. This again is a part of the Vengeful Father’s `control and dominate’ strategy. With little or no support, it is easier for them to continue to persecute and torment their victims;

6. GROOMING AND MANIPULATION OF AUTHORITY FIGURES AND PROFESSIONALS – Vengeful Fathers quickly recognize that lawyers, Court Reporters/Consultants, and judges have key roles in the Family Law system, They quickly learn the tactics and ploys to defend themselves in Courtrooms or receive advice from the many Father’s Rights groups and websites formed by other Vengeful Fathers. Such tactics and ploys involve : Denial or minimization of any allegations of assault or abuse, despite evidence to the contrary and including criminal convictions; Blaming the victims; Counter allegations to weaken the victim’s position; Provocation by the victims;

7. BLAME THE VICTIM – probably the most highly significant feature of the behavior and actions of the Vengeful Father, is a pathological aversion to accepting any form of responsibility for their actions. They readily blame the police, authority figures, the Courts, lawyers and even mothers, when proceedings do not go in the way they expect and anticipate. When thwarted in such ways and denied a “winning’’ outcome, this is when they become at their most dangerous.

From 1998-January 2014 there were 19 events were separated fathers killed their children. A total of 52 people have died in these events. 38 of the dead were children. All were murdered. Two women were murdered and 2 men were murdered. The remaining 10 men’s deaths were suicides by the perpetrators.

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Posted in 30 Red Flags of Manipulative People, And Manipulation Are Key Tools, Are children susceptible to manipulation?, Managing the impact of parental separation on children, Manipulative People, Parental Alienation & Narcissistic Personality Disorder

How manipulators control their victims according to Simon

According to Simon

Simon identified the following manipulative techniques:[2]

  • Lying: It is hard to tell if somebody is lying at the time they do it, although often the truth may be apparent later when it is too late. One way to minimize the chances of being lied to is to understand that some personality types (particularly psychopaths) are experts at the art of lying and cheating, doing it frequently, and often in subtle ways.
  • Lying by omission: This is a very subtle form of lying by withholding a significant amount of the truth. This technique is also used in propaganda.
  • Denial: Manipulator refuses to admit that he or she has done something wrong.
  • Rationalization: An excuse made by the manipulator for inappropriate behavior. Rationalization is closely related to spin.
  • Minimization: This is a type of denial coupled with rationalization. The manipulator asserts that his or her behavior is not as harmful or irresponsible as someone else was suggesting, for example, saying that a taunt or insult was only a joke.
  • Selective inattention or selective attention: Manipulator refuses to pay attention to anything that may distract from his or her agenda, saying things like “I don’t want to hear it”.
  • Diversion: Manipulator not giving a straight answer to a straight question and instead being diversionary, steering the conversation onto another topic.
  • Evasion: Similar to diversion but giving irrelevant, rambling, vague responses, weasel words.
  • Covert intimidation: Manipulator throwing the victim onto the defensive by using veiled (subtle, indirect or implied) threats.
  • Guilt trip: A special kind of intimidation tactic. A manipulator suggests to the conscientious victim that he or she does not care enough, is too selfish or has it easy. This usually results in the victim feeling bad, keeping them in a self-doubting, anxious and submissive position.
  • Shaming: Manipulator uses sarcasm and put-downs to increase fear and self-doubt in the victim. Manipulators use this tactic to make others feel unworthy and therefore defer to them. Shaming tactics can be very subtle such as a fierce look or glance, unpleasant tone of voice, rhetorical comments, subtle sarcasm. Manipulators can make one feel ashamed for even daring to challenge them. It is an effective way to foster a sense of inadequacy in the victim.
  • Playing the victim role: Manipulator portrays him- or herself as a victim of circumstance or of someone else’s behavior in order to gain pity, sympathy or evoke compassion and thereby get something from another. Caring and conscientious people cannot stand to see anyone suffering and the manipulator often finds it easy to play on sympathy to get cooperation.
  • Vilifying the victim: More than any other, this tactic is a powerful means of putting the victim on the defensive while simultaneously masking the aggressive intent of the manipulator, while the manipulator falsely accuses the victim as being an abuser in response when the victim stands up for or defends themselves or their position.
  • Playing the servant role: Cloaking a self-serving agenda in guise of a service to a more noble cause, for example saying he is acting in a certain way to be “obedient” to or in “service” to an authority figure or “just doing their job”.
  • Seduction: Manipulator uses charm, praise, flattery or overtly supporting others in order to get them to lower their defenses and give their trust and loyalty to him or her. They will also offer help with the intent to gain trust and access to an unsuspecting victim they have charmed.
  • Projecting the blame (blaming others): Manipulator scapegoats in often subtle, hard-to-detect ways. Often, the manipulator will project his/her own psychotic thinking onto the victim, making the victim look like he/she has done something wrong. Manipulators will also claim that the victim is the one who is at fault for believing lies that they were conned into believing, as if the victim forced the manipulator to be deceitful. All blame, except for the part that is used by the manipulator to accept false guilt, is done in order to make the victim feel guilty about making healthy choices, correct thinking and good behaviors. It is frequently used as a means of psychological and emotional manipulation and control. Manipulators lie about lying, only to re-manipulate the original, less believable story into a “more acceptable” truth that the victim will believe. Projecting lies as being the truth is another common method of control and manipulation. Manipulators love to falsely accuse the victim as “deserving to be treated that way.” They often claim that the victim is crazy and/or abusive, especially when there is evidence against the manipulator. (See Feigning, below.)
  • Feigning innocence: Manipulator tries to suggest that any harm done was unintentional or that they did not do something that they were accused of. Manipulator may put on a look of surprise or indignation. This tactic makes the victim question his or her own judgment and possibly his own sanity.
  • Feigning confusion: Manipulator tries to play dumb by pretending he or she does not know what the victim is talking about or is confused about an important issue brought to his or her attention. The manipulator intentionally confuses the victim in order for the victim to doubt his/her own accuracy of perception, often pointing out key elements that the manipulator intentionally included in case there is room for doubt. Sometimes manipulators will have used cohorts in advance to help back up their story.
  • Brandishing anger: Manipulator uses anger to brandish sufficient emotional intensity and rage to shock the victim into submission. The manipulator is not actually angry, he or she just puts on an act. He just wants what he wants and gets “angry” when denied. Controlled anger is often used as a manipulation tactic to avoid confrontation, avoid telling the truth or to further hide intent. There are often threats used by the manipulator of going to police, or falsely reporting abuses that the manipulator intentionally contrived to scare or intimidate the victim into submission. Blackmail and other threats of exposure are other forms of controlled anger and manipulation, especially when the victim refuses initial requests or suggestions by the manipulator. Anger is also used as a defense so the manipulator can avoid telling truths at inconvenient times or circumstances. Anger is often used as a tool or defense to ward off inquiries or suspicion. The victim becomes more focused on the anger instead of the manipulation tactic.
  • Bandwagon Effect: Manipulator comforts the victim into submission by claiming (whether true or false) that many people already have done something, and the victim should as well. These include phrases such as “Many people like you…” or “Everyone does this anyways.” Such manipulation can be seen in peer pressure situations, often occurring in scenarios where the manipulator attempts to influence the victim into trying drugs or other substances.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Psychological_manipulation#How_manipulators_control_their_victims

Posted in And Manipulation Are Key Tools, Are children susceptible to manipulation?, Can a Child Really be Manipulated Like That?, Child Being Manipulated;, Manipulating a Child’s Loyalty, Parental Alienation & Narcissistic Personality Disorder

How manipulators control their victims

According to Braiker

Braiker identified the following ways that manipulators control their victims:[1]

  • Positive reinforcement: includes praise, superficial charm, superficial sympathy (crocodile tears), excessive apologizing, money, approval, gifts, attention, facial expressions such as a forced laugh or smile, and public recognition.
  • Negative reinforcement: involves removing one from a negative situation as a reward, e.g. “You won’t have to do your homework if you allow me to do this to you.”
  • Intermittent or partial reinforcement: Partial or intermittent negative reinforcement can create an effective climate of fear and doubt. Partial or intermittent positive reinforcement can encourage the victim to persist – for example in most forms of gambling, the gambler is likely to win now and again but still lose money overall.
  • Punishment: includes nagging, yelling, the silent treatment, intimidation, threats, swearing, emotional blackmail, the guilt trip, sulking, crying, and playing the victim.
  • Traumatic one-trial learning: using verbal abuse, explosive anger, or other intimidating behavior to establish dominance or superiority; even one incident of such behavior can condition or train victims to avoid upsetting, confronting or contradicting the manipulator.

According to Braiker

Posted in Parental Alienation & Narcissistic Personality Disorder

Psychological manipulation

Psychological manipulation is a type of social influence that aims to change the behavior or perception of others through abusive, deceptive, or underhanded tactics.[1] By advancing the interests of the manipulator, often at another’s expense, such methods could be considered exploitative, abusive, devious, and deceptive. Social influence is not necessarily negative. For example, doctors can try to convince patients to change unhealthy habits. Manipulation involves a clever and ruthless manipulator bringing a simple victim under his or her domination (using deception and cunning) and using the victim to serve their own purposes. Manipulators are cold and ruthless in treating their victims and skilfull enough to know how to dominate and control the victim for a long time.

Psychological manipulation

Posted in And Manipulation Are Key Tools, Are children susceptible to manipulation?, Can a Child Really be Manipulated Like That?, Child Being Manipulated;, Parental Alienation & Narcissistic Personality Disorder

A message of hope

A message of hope for those parents whose child has been turned against them in a vicious campaign of lies and manipulation.

 

Posted in Parental Alienation PA

Understanding and Treating Psychological Disorders

This must-have reference is a unique exploration of how the individual notion of ‘self’ and related constructs, such as early schemas and attachment styles, impact on psychopathology, psychotherapy processes and treatment outcomes for psychological disorders across DSM-5, such as depression, bipolar and schizophrenia spectrum disorders, anxiety and trauma, eating disorders, obsessive-compulsive and related disorders, autism, personality disorders, gender identity disorder, dementia and somatic problems such as chronic fatigue syndrome. It discusses the role of the concept of self in a wide range of existing theoretical and treatment frameworks, and relates these to real-life clinical issues and treatment implications. Emphasizing the importance of integrating an awareness of self constructs into evidence-based conceptual models, it offers alternative practical intervention techniques, suggesting a new way forward in advancing our understanding of psychological disorders and their treatment.

The Self in Understanding and Treating Psychological Disorders

Posted in Parental Alienation PA, Psychopathy Checklist

Psychopathy Checklist

In contemporary research and clinical practice, Robert D. Hare’s Psychopathy Checklist-Revised (PCL-R) is the psycho-diagnostic tool most commonly used to assess psychopathy. Because an individual’s score may have important consequences for his or her future, and because the potential for harm if the test is used or administered incorrectly is considerable, Hare argues that the test should only be considered valid if administered by a suitably qualified and experienced clinician under controlled and licensed conditions. Hare receives a royalty on licensed use of the test.

PCL-R model of psychopathy

The PCL-R is a clinical rating scale (rated by a psychologist or other professional) of 20 items. Each of the items in the PCL-R is scored on a three-point scale according to specific criteria through file information and a semi-structured interview. A value of 0 is assigned if the item does not apply, 1 if it applies somewhat, and 2 if it fully applies. In addition to lifestyle and criminal behavior the checklist assesses glib and superficial charm, grandiosity, need for stimulation, pathological lying, conning and manipulating, lack of remorse, callousness, poor behavioral controls, impulsivity, irresponsibility, failure to accept responsibility for one’s own actions and so forth. The scores are used to predict risk for criminal re-offence and probability of rehabilitation.

The current edition of the PCL-R officially lists four factors (1.a, 1.b, 2.a, and 2.b), which summarize the 20 assessed areas via factor analysis. The previous edition of the PCL-R listed two factors. Factor 1 is labelled “selfish, callous and remorseless use of others”. Factor 2 is labelled as “chronically unstable, antisocial and socially deviant lifestyle”. There is a high risk of recidivism and currently small likelihood of rehabilitation for those who are labelled as having “psychopathy” on the basis of the PCL-R ratings in the manual for the test, although treatment research is ongoing.

PCL-R Factors 1a and 1b are correlated with narcissistic personality disorder and histrionic personality disorder. They are associated with extraversion and positive affect. Factor 1, the so-called core personality traits of psychopathy, may even be beneficial for the psychopath (in terms of nondeviant social functioning).

PCL-R Factors 2a and 2b are particularly strongly correlated to antisocial personality disorder and criminality and are associated with reactive anger, criminality, and impulsive violence. The target group for the PCL-R is convicted criminals. The quality of ratings may depend on how much background information is available and whether the person rated is honest and forthright.

The two factors

Factor 1: Personality “Aggressive narcissism”

  • Glibness/superficial charm
  • Grandiose sense of self-worth
  • Pathological lying
  • Cunning/manipulative
  • Lack of remorse or guilt
  • Shallow affect (genuine emotion is short-lived and egocentric)
  • Callousness; lack of empathy
  • Failure to accept responsibility for own actions

Factor 2: Case history “Socially deviant lifestyle”.

  • Need for stimulation/proneness to boredom
  • Parasitic lifestyle
  • Poor behavioral control
  • Lack of realistic long-term goals
  • Impulsivity
  • Irresponsibility
  • Juvenile delinquency
  • Early behavior problems
  • Revocation of conditional release

Traits not correlated with either factor

  • Promiscuous sexual behavior
  • Many short-term marital relationships
  • Criminal versatility
  • Acquired behavioural sociopathy/sociological conditioning (Item 21: a newly identified trait i.e. a person relying on sociological strategies and tricks to deceive)

Early factor analysis of the PCL-R indicated it consisted of two factors. Factor 1 captures traits dealing with the interpersonal and affective deficits of psychopathy (e.g. shallow affect, superficial charm, manipulativeness, lack of empathy) whereas Factor 2 dealt with symptoms relating to antisocial behaviour (e.g. criminal versatility, impulsiveness, irresponsibility, poor behaviour controls, juvenile delinquency).

The two factors have been found by those following this theory to display different correlates. Factor 1 has been correlated with narcissistic personality disorder, low anxiety, low empathy, low stress reaction and low suicide risk but high scores on scales of achievement and well-being. In addition, the use of item response theory analysis of female offender PCL-R scores indicates factor 1 items are more important in measuring and generalizing the construct of psychopathy in women than factor 2 items.

In contrast, Factor 2 was found to be related to antisocial personality disorder, social deviance, sensation seeking, low socio-economic status and high risk of suicide. The two factors are nonetheless highly correlated and there are strong indications they do result from a single underlying disorder. However, research has failed to replicate the two-factor model in female samples.

Recent statistical analysis using confirmatory factor analysis by Cooke and Michie indicated a three-factor structure, with those items from factor 2 strictly relating to antisocial behaviour (criminal versatility, juvenile delinquency, revocation of conditional release, early behavioural problems and poor behavioural controls) removed from the final model. The remaining items are divided into three factors: Arrogant and Deceitful Interpersonal Style, Deficient Affective Experience and Impulsive and Irresponsible Behavioural Style.

In the most recent edition of the PCL-R, Hare adds a fourth antisocial behaviour factor, consisting of those Factor 2 items excluded in the previous model. Again, these models are presumed to be hierarchical with a single unified psychopathy disorder underlying the distinct but correlated factors.

The Cooke & Michie hierarchical ‘three’-factor model has severe statistical problems—i.e., it actually contains ten factors and results in impossible parameters (negative variances)—as well as conceptual problems. Hare and colleagues have published detailed critiques of the Cooke & Michie model. New evidence, across a range of samples and diverse measures, now supports a four-factor model of the psychopathy construct, which represents the Interpersonal, Affective, Lifestyle, and overt Antisocial features of the personality disorder.

Diagnostic criteria and PCL-R assessment

Psychopathy is most commonly assessed with the PCL-R, which is a clinical rating scale with 20 items. Each of the items in the PCL-R is scored on a three-point (0, 1, 2) scale according to two factors. PCL-R Factor 2 is associated with reactive anger, anxiety, increased risk of suicide, criminality, and impulsive violence.

PCL-R Factor 1, in contrast, is associated with extraversion and positive affect. Factor 1, the so-called core personality traits of psychopathy, may even be beneficial for the psychopath (in terms of nondeviant social functioning). A psychopath will score high on both factors, whereas someone with APD will score high only on Factor 2.

Both case history and a semi-structured interview are used in the analysis.

Other mental disorders

Psychopathy, as measured on the PCL-R, is negatively correlated with all DSM-IV Axis I disorders except substance abuse disorders. Psychopathy is most strongly correlated with DSM-IV antisocial personality disorder.

The official stance of the American Psychiatric Association as presented in the DSM-IV-TR is that psychopathy and sociopathy are misnomers. The World Health Organization takes a different stance in its ICD-10 by referring to psychopathy, antisocial personality, asocial personality, and amoral personality as synonyms for dissocial personality disorder.

Among laypersons and professionals, there is much confusion about the meanings and differences between psychopathy, sociopathy, antisocial personality disorder, and the ICD-10 diagnosis, dissocial personality disorder. Hare takes the stance that psychopathy as a syndrome should be considered distinct from the DSM-IV’s antisocial personality disorder construct, even though ASPD and psychopathy were intended to be equivalent in the DSM-IV. However, those who created the DSM-IV felt that there was too much room for subjectivity on the part of clinicians when identifying things like remorse and guilt; therefore, the DSM-IV panel decided to stick to observable behaviour, namely socially deviant behaviours.

As a result, the diagnosis of ASPD is something that the “majority of criminals easily meet.” Hare goes further to say that the percentage of incarcerated criminals that meet the requirements of ASPD is somewhere between 80 to 85 percent, whereas only about 20% of these criminals would qualify for a diagnosis of what Hare’s scale considers to be a psychopath. This twenty percent, according to Hare, accounts for 50 percent of all the most serious crimes committed, including half of all serial and repeat rapists. According to FBI reports, 44 percent of all police officer murders in 1992 were committed by psychopaths.

Another study using the PCL-R to examine the relationship between antisocial behaviour and suicide found that suicide history was strongly correlated to PCL-R Factor 2 (reflecting antisocial deviance) and was not correlated to PCL-R factor 1 (reflecting affective functioning). Given that ASPD relates to Factor 2, whereas psychopathy relates to both factors, this would confirm Hervey Cleckley’s assertion that psychopaths are relatively immune to suicide. People with ASPD, on the other hand, have a relatively high suicide rate.

Since psychopaths frequently cause harm through their actions, it is assumed that they are not emotionally attached to the people they harm; however, according to the PCL-R Checklist, psychopaths are also careless in the way they treat themselves. They frequently fail to alter their behavior in a way that would prevent them from enduring future discomfort.

In practice, mental health professionals rarely treat psychopathic personality disorders as they are considered untreatable and no interventions have proved to be effective. In England and Wales the diagnosis of dissocial personality disorder is grounds for detention in secure psychiatric hospitals under the Mental Health Act if they have committed serious crimes, but since such individuals are disruptive for other patients and not responsive to treatment this alternative to prison is not often used.

Because an individual’s scores may have important consequences for his or her future, the potential for harm if the test is used or administered incorrectly is considerable. The test can only be considered valid if administered by a suitably qualified and experienced clinician under controlled conditions.

Hare wants the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders to list psychopathy as a unique disorder, saying psychopathy has no precise equivalent in either the DSM-IV-TR, where it is most strongly correlated with the diagnosis of antisocial personality disorder, or the ICD-10, which has a partly similar condition called dissocial personality disorder. Both organizations view the terms as synonymous. But only a minority of what Hare and his followers would diagnose as psychopaths who are in institutions are violent offenders.

The manipulative skills of some of the others are valued for providing audacious leadership. It is argued psychopathy is adaptive in a highly competitive environment, because it gets results for both the individual and the corporations or, often small political sects they represent. However, these individuals will often cause long-term harm, both to their co-workers and the organization as a whole, due to their manipulative, deceitful, abusive, and often fraudulent behaviour.

Hare describes people he calls psychopaths as “intraspecies predators who use charm, manipulation, intimidation, sex and violence to control others and to satisfy their own selfish needs. Lacking in conscience and empathy, they take what they want and do as they please, violating social norms and expectations without guilt or remorse”. “What is missing, in other words, are the very qualities that allow a human being to live in social harmony.”

Read more: http://www.minddisorders.com/knowledge/Hare_Psychopathy_Checklist.html#ixzz491rQYbbY

Posted in Parental Alienation PA

Infographic: Psychological Manipulation | Psychologia

All you need to know about psychological manipulation.

Source: Infographic: Psychological Manipulation | Psychologia

Posted in Parental Alienation PA

Psychological manipulation

Psychological manipulation is a type of social influence that aims to change the perception or behavior of others through underhanded, deceptive, or abusive tactics.[1] By advancing the interests of the manipulator, often at another’s expense, such methods could be considered exploitative, abusive, devious, and deceptive. Social influence is not necessarily negative. For example, doctors can try to convince patients to change unhealthy habits. Social influence is generally perceived to be harmless when it respects the right of the influenced to accept or reject and is not unduly coercive. Depending on the context and motivations, social influence may constitute underhanded manipulation.

Requirements for successful manipulation

According to psychology author George K. Simon, successful psychological manipulation primarily involves the manipulator:[2]

  1. Concealing aggressive intentions and behaviors.
  2. Knowing the psychological vulnerabilities of the victim to determine which tactics are likely to be the most effective.
  3. Having a sufficient level of ruthlessness to have no qualms about causing harm to the victim if necessary.

Consequently, the manipulation is likely to be accomplished through covert aggressive (relational aggressive or passive aggressive) means.

How manipulators control their victims

According to Braiker

Clinical psychologist Harriet Braiker wrote a self help book[1] which identified the following basic ways that manipulators control their victims:

  • Positive reinforcement: includes praise, superficial charm, superficial sympathy (crocodile tears), excessive apologizing, money, approval, gifts, attention, facial expressions such as a forced laugh or smile, and public recognition.
  • Negative reinforcement: involves removing one from a negative situation as a reward, e.g. “You won’t have to do your homework if you allow me to do this to you.”
  • Intermittent or partial reinforcement: Partial or intermittent negative reinforcement can create an effective climate of fear and doubt. Partial or intermittent positive reinforcement can encourage the victim to persist – for example in most forms of gambling, the gambler is likely to win now and again but still lose money overall.
  • Punishment: includes nagging, yelling, the silent treatment, intimidation, threats, swearing, emotional blackmail, the guilt trip, sulking, crying, and playing the victim.
  • Traumatic one-trial learning: using verbal abuse, explosive anger, or other intimidating behavior to establish dominance or superiority; even one incident of such behavior can condition or train victims to avoid upsetting, confronting or contradicting the manipulator.

According to Simon

Simon[2] identified the following manipulative techniques:

  • Lying: It is hard to tell if somebody is lying at the time they do it, although often the truth may be apparent later when it is too late. One way to minimize the chances of being lied to is to understand that some personality types (particularly psychopaths) are experts at the art of lying and cheating, doing it frequently, and often in subtle ways.
  • Lying by omission: This is a very subtle form of lying by withholding a significant amount of the truth. This technique is also used in propaganda.
  • Denial: Manipulator refuses to admit that he or she has done something wrong.
  • Rationalization: An excuse made by the manipulator for inappropriate behavior. Rationalization is closely related to spin.
  • Minimization: This is a type of denial coupled with rationalization. The manipulator asserts that his or her behavior is not as harmful or irresponsible as someone else was suggesting, for example, saying that a taunt or insult was only a joke.
  • Selective inattention or selective attention: Manipulator refuses to pay attention to anything that may distract from his or her agenda, saying things like “I don’t want to hear it”.
  • Diversion: Manipulator not giving a straight answer to a straight question and instead being diversionary, steering the conversation onto another topic.
  • Evasion: Similar to diversion but giving irrelevant, rambling, vague responses, weasel words.
  • Covert intimidation: Manipulator throwing the victim onto the defensive by using veiled (subtle, indirect or implied) threats.
  • Guilt trip: A special kind of intimidation tactic. A manipulator suggests to the conscientious victim that he or she does not care enough, is too selfish or has it easy. This usually results in the victim feeling bad, keeping them in a self-doubting, anxious and submissive position.
  • Shaming: Manipulator uses sarcasm and put-downs to increase fear and self-doubt in the victim. Manipulators use this tactic to make others feel unworthy and therefore defer to them. Shaming tactics can be very subtle such as a fierce look or glance, unpleasant tone of voice, rhetorical comments, subtle sarcasm. Manipulators can make one feel ashamed for even daring to challenge them. It is an effective way to foster a sense of inadequacy in the victim.
  • Playing the victim role: Manipulator portrays him- or herself as a victim of circumstance or of someone else’s behavior in order to gain pity, sympathy or evoke compassion and thereby get something from another. Caring and conscientious people cannot stand to see anyone suffering and the manipulator often finds it easy to play on sympathy to get cooperation.
  • Vilifying the victim: More than any other, this tactic is a powerful means of putting the victim on the defensive while simultaneously masking the aggressive intent of the manipulator, while the manipulator falsely accuses the victim as being an abuser in response when the victim stands up for or defends themselves or their position.
  • Playing the servant role: Cloaking a self-serving agenda in guise of a service to a more noble cause, for example saying he is acting in a certain way to be “obedient” to or in “service” to an authority figure or “just doing their job”.
  • Seduction: Manipulator uses charm, praise, flattery or overtly supporting others in order to get them to lower their defenses and give their trust and loyalty to him or her. They will also offer help with the intent to gain trust and access to an unsuspecting victim they have charmed.
  • Projecting the blame (blaming others): Manipulator scapegoats in often subtle, hard-to-detect ways. Often, the manipulator will project his/her own psychotic thinking onto the victim, making the victim look like he/she has done something wrong. Manipulators will also claim that the victim is the one who is at fault for believing lies that they were conned into believing, as if the victim forced the manipulator to be deceitful. All blame, except for the part that is used by the manipulator to accept false guilt, is done in order to make the victim feel guilty about making healthy choices, correct thinking and good behaviors. It is frequently used as a means of psychological and emotional manipulation and control. Manipulators lie about lying, only to re-manipulate the original, less believable story into a “more acceptable” truth that the victim will believe. Projecting lies as being the truth is another common method of control and manipulation. Manipulators love to falsely accuse the victim as “deserving to be treated that way.” They often claim that the victim is crazy and/or abusive, especially when there is evidence against the manipulator. (See Feigning, below.)
  • Feigning innocence: Manipulator tries to suggest that any harm done was unintentional or that they did not do something that they were accused of. Manipulator may put on a look of surprise or indignation. This tactic makes the victim question his or her own judgment and possibly his own sanity.
  • Feigning confusion: Manipulator tries to play dumb by pretending he or she does not know what the victim is talking about or is confused about an important issue brought to his or her attention. The manipulator intentionally confuses the victim in order for the victim to doubt his/her own accuracy of perception, often pointing out key elements that the manipulator intentionally included in case there is room for doubt. Sometimes manipulators will have used cohorts in advance to help back up their story.
  • Brandishing anger: Manipulator uses anger to brandish sufficient emotional intensity and rage to shock the victim into submission. The manipulator is not actually angry, he or she just puts on an act. He just wants what he wants and gets “angry” when denied. Controlled anger is often used as a manipulation tactic to avoid confrontation, avoid telling the truth or to further hide intent. There are often threats used by the manipulator of going to police, or falsely reporting abuses that the manipulator intentionally contrived to scare or intimidate the victim into submission. Blackmail and other threats of exposure are other forms of controlled anger and manipulation, especially when the victim refuses initial requests or suggestions by the manipulator. Anger is also used as a defense so the manipulator can avoid telling truths at inconvenient times or circumstances. Anger is often used as a tool or defense to ward off inquiries or suspicion. The victim becomes more focused on the anger instead of the manipulation tactic.
  • Bandwagon Effect: Manipulator comforts the victim into submission by claiming (whether true or false) that many people already have done something, and the victim should as well. These include phrases such as “Many people like you…” or “Everyone does this anyways.”

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Psychological_manipulation

Posted in Psychological manipulation

Psychological manipulation

Psychological manipulation is a type of social influence that aims to change the perception or behavior of others through underhanded, deceptive, or even abusive tactics.[1] By advancing the interests of the manipulator, often at another’s expense, such methods could be considered exploitative, abusive, devious, and deceptive. Social influence is not necessarily negative. For example, doctors can try to persuadepatients to change unhealthy habits. Social influence is generally perceived to be harmless when it respects the right of the influenced to accept or reject and is not unduly coercive. Depending on the context and motivations, social influence may constitute underhanded manipulation.

Requirements for successful manipulation

According to psychology author George K. Simon, successful psychological manipulation primarily involves the manipulator:[2]

  1. concealing aggressive intentions and behaviors.
  2. knowing the psychological vulnerabilities of the victim to determine what tactics are likely to be the most effective.
  3. having a sufficient level of ruthlessness to have no qualms about causing harm to the victim if necessary.

Consequently, the manipulation is likely to be accomplished through covert aggressive (relational aggressive or passive aggressive) means.[2]

How manipulators control their victims

According to Braiker

Clinical psychologist Harriet Braiker wrote a self help book[1] which identified the following basic ways that manipulators control their victims:

  • Positive reinforcement: includes praise, superficial charm, superficial sympathy (crocodile tears), excessive apologizing, money, approval, gifts, attention, facial expressions such as a forced laugh or smile, and public recognition.
  • Negative reinforcement: involves removing one from a negative situation as a reward, e.g. “You won’t have to do your homework if you allow me to do this to you.”
  • Intermittent or partial reinforcement: Partial or intermittent negative reinforcement can create an effective climate of fear and doubt. Partial or intermittent positive reinforcement can encourage the victim to persist – for example in most forms of gambling, the gambler is likely to win now and again but still lose money overall.
  • Punishment: includes nagging, yelling, the silent treatment, intimidation, threats, swearing, emotional blackmail, the guilt trip, sulking, crying, and playing the victim.
  • Traumatic one-trial learning: using verbal abuse, explosive anger, or other intimidating behavior to establish dominance or superiority; even one incident of such behavior can condition or train victims to avoid upsetting, confronting or contradicting the manipulator.

According to Simon

Simon[2] identified the following manipulative techniques:

  • Lying: It is hard to tell if somebody is lying at the time they do it, although often the truth may be apparent later when it is too late. One way to minimize the chances of being lied to is to understand that some personality types (particularly psychopaths) are experts at the art of lying and cheating, doing it frequently, and often in subtle ways.
  • Lying by omission: This is a very subtle form of lying by withholding a significant amount of the truth. This technique is also used in propaganda.
  • Denial: Manipulator refuses to admit that he or she has done something wrong.
  • Rationalization: An excuse made by the manipulator for inappropriate behavior. Rationalization is closely related to spin.
  • Minimization: This is a type of denial coupled with rationalization. The manipulator asserts that his or her behavior is not as harmful or irresponsible as someone else was suggesting, for example, saying that a taunt or insult was only a joke.
  • Selective inattention or selective attention: Manipulator refuses to pay attention to anything that may distract from his or her agenda, saying things like “I don’t want to hear it”.
  • Diversion: Manipulator not giving a straight answer to a straight question and instead being diversionary, steering the conversation onto another topic.
  • Evasion: Similar to diversion but giving irrelevant, rambling, vague responses, weasel words.
  • Covert intimidation: Manipulator throwing the victim onto the defensive by using veiled (subtle, indirect or implied) threats.
  • Guilt trip: A special kind of intimidation tactic. A manipulator suggests to the conscientious victim that he or she does not care enough, is too selfish or has it easy. This usually results in the victim feeling bad, keeping them in a self-doubting, anxious and submissive position.
  • Shaming: Manipulator uses sarcasm and put-downs to increase fear and self-doubt in the victim. Manipulators use this tactic to make others feel unworthy and therefore defer to them. Shaming tactics can be very subtle such as a fierce look or glance, unpleasant tone of voice, rhetorical comments, subtle sarcasm. Manipulators can make one feel ashamed for even daring to challenge them. It is an effective way to foster a sense of inadequacy in the victim.
  • Playing the victim role: Manipulator portrays him- or herself as a victim of circumstance or of someone else’s behavior in order to gain pity, sympathy or evoke compassion and thereby get something from another. Caring and conscientious people cannot stand to see anyone suffering and the manipulator often finds it easy to play on sympathy to get cooperation.
  • Vilifying the victim: More than any other, this tactic is a powerful means of putting the victim on the defensive while simultaneously masking the aggressive intent of the manipulator, while the manipulator falsely accuses the victim as being an abuser in response when the victim stands up for or defends themselves or their position.
  • Playing the servant role: Cloaking a self-serving agenda in guise of a service to a more noble cause, for example saying he is acting in a certain way to be “obedient” to or in “service” to an authority figure or “just doing their job”.
  • Seduction: Manipulator uses charm, praise, flattery or overtly supporting others in order to get them to lower their defenses and give their trust and loyalty to him or her. They will also offer help with the intent to gain trust and access to an unsuspecting victim they have charmed.
  • Projecting the blame (blaming others): Manipulator scapegoats in often subtle, hard-to-detect ways. Often, the manipulator will project his/her own psychotic thinking onto the victim, making the victim look like he/she has done something wrong. Manipulators will also claim that the victim is the one who is at fault for believing lies that they were conned into believing, as if the victim forced the manipulator to be deceitful. All blame, except for the part that is used by the manipulator to accept false guilt, is done in order to make the victim feel guilty about making healthy choices, correct thinking and good behaviors. It is frequently used as a means of psychological and emotional manipulation and control. Manipulators lie about lying, only to re-manipulate the original, less believable story into a “more acceptable” truth that the victim will believe. Projecting lies as being the truth is another common method of control and manipulation. Manipulators love to falsely accuse the victim as “deserving to be treated that way.” They often claim that the victim is crazy and/or abusive, especially when there is evidence against the manipulator. (See Feigning, below.)
  • Feigning innocence: Manipulator tries to suggest that any harm done was unintentional or that they did not do something that they were accused of. Manipulator may put on a look of surprise or indignation. This tactic makes the victim question his or her own judgment and possibly his own sanity.
  • Feigning confusion: Manipulator tries to play dumb by pretending he or she does not know what the victim is talking about or is confused about an important issue brought to his or her attention. The manipulator intentionally confuses the victim in order for the victim to doubt his/her own accuracy of perception, often pointing out key elements that the manipulator intentionally included in case there is room for doubt. Sometimes manipulators will have used cohorts in advance to help back up their story.
  • Brandishing anger: Manipulator uses anger to brandish sufficient emotional intensity and rage to shock the victim into submission. The manipulator is not actually angry, he or she just puts on an act. He just wants what he wants and gets “angry” when denied. Controlled anger is often used as a manipulation tactic to avoid confrontation, avoid telling the truth or to further hide intent. There are often threats used by the manipulator of going to police, or falsely reporting abuses that the manipulator intentionally contrived to scare or intimidate the victim into submission. Blackmail and other threats of exposure are other forms of controlled anger and manipulation, especially when the victim refuses initial requests or suggestions by the manipulator. Anger is also used as a defense so the manipulator can avoid telling truths at inconvenient times or circumstances. Anger is often used as a tool or defense to ward off inquiries or suspicion. The victim becomes more focused on the anger instead of the manipulation tactic.

Other Techniques

  • Bandwagon Effect: Manipulator comforts the victim into submission by claiming (whether true or false) that many people already have done something, and the victim should as well. These include phrases such as “Many people like you…” or “Everyone does this anyways.” Steven Dubner shared an example of bandwagon his Freakonimics podcast titled: The Maddest Men of All[3]

Vulnerabilities exploited by manipulators

According to Braiker’s self-help book,[1] manipulators exploit the following vulnerabilities (buttons) that may exist in victims:

  • the “disease to please”
  • addiction to earning the approval and acceptance of others
  • Emotophobia (fear of negative emotion; i.e. a fear of expressing anger, frustration or disapproval)
  • lack of assertiveness and ability to say no
  • blurry sense of identity (with soft personal boundaries)
  • low self-reliance
  • external locus of control

According to Simon,[2] manipulators exploit the following vulnerabilities that may exist in victims:

  • naïveté – victim finds it too hard to accept the idea that some people are cunning, devious and ruthless or is “in denial” if he or she is being victimized.
  • over-conscientiousness – victim is too willing to give manipulator the benefit of the doubt and see their side of things in which they blame the victim.
  • low self-confidence – victim is self-doubting, lacking in confidence and assertiveness, likely to go on the defensive too easily.
  • over-intellectualization – victim tries too hard to understand and believes the manipulator has some understandable reason to be hurtful.
  • emotional dependency – victim has a submissive or dependent personality. The more emotionally dependent the victim is, the more vulnerable he or she is to being exploited and manipulated.

Manipulators generally take the time to scope out the characteristics and vulnerabilities of their victim.

Kantor advises in his book,[4] the following are vulnerable to psychopathic manipulators involve being too:

  • dependent – dependent people need to be loved and are therefore gullible and liable to say yes to something to which they should say no.
  • immature – has impaired judgment and believes the exaggerated advertising claims.
  • naïve – cannot believe there are dishonest people in the world, taking for granted that if there were they would not be allowed to operate.
  • impressionable – overly seduced by charmers. For example, they might vote for the seemingly charming politician who kisses babies.
  • trusting – people who are honest often assume that everyone else is honest. They are more likely to commit themselves to people they hardly know without checking credentials, etc., and less likely to question so-called experts.
  • lonely – lonely people may accept any offer of human contact. A psychopathic stranger may offer human companionship for a price.
  • narcissistic – narcissists are prone to falling for unmerited flattery.
  • impulsive – make snap decisions about, for example, what to buy or whom to marry without consulting others.
  • altruistic – the opposite of psychopathic: too honest, too fair, too empathetic.
  • frugal – cannot say no to a bargain even if they know the reason it is so cheap.
  • materialistic – easy prey for loan sharks or get-rich-quick schemes.
  • greedy – the greedy and dishonest may fall prey to a psychopath who can easily entice them to act in an immoral way.
  • masochistic – lack self-respect and so unconsciously let psychopaths take advantage of them. They think they deserve it out of a sense of guilt.
  • the elderly – the elderly can become fatigued and less capable of multi-tasking. When hearing a sales pitch they are less likely to consider that it could be a con. They are prone to giving money to someone with a hard-luck story. See elder abuse.

Motivations of manipulators

Manipulators can have various possible motivations, including but not limited to:[1]

  • the need to advance their own purposes and personal gain at virtually any cost to others
  • a strong need to attain feelings of power and superiority in relationships with others
  • a want and need to feel in control (aka. control freak)
  • a desire to gain a feeling of power over others in order to raise their perception of self-esteem
  • boredom, or growing tired of his/her surroundings, seeing it as a game more than hurting others

Psychopathy

Main article: Psychopathy

Being manipulative is in Factor 1 of the Hare Psychopathy Checklist (PCL).[5] The workplace psychopath may often rapidly shift between emotions – used to manipulate people or cause high anxiety.[6]

Antisocial, borderline and narcissistic personality disorders

According to Kernberg, antisocial, borderline, and narcissistic personality disorders are all organized at a borderline level of personality organization,[7] and the three share some common characterological deficits and overlapping personality traits, with deceitfulness and exceptional manipulative abilities being the most common traits among the three. Sociopaths, borderlines, and narcissists are often both physically attractive (narcissists and borderlines in particular) and highly intelligent and can be efficient, persuasive, and incredible liars.[citation needed] Other shared traits include pathological narcissism,[7] consistent irresponsibility,machiavellianism, lack of empathy,[8] cruelty, meanness, impulsivity, proneness to self-harm and addictions,[9] interpersonal exploitation, hostility, anger and rage, vanity, emotional instability, rejection sensitivity, perfectionism, and the use of primitive defence mechanisms that are pathological and narcissistic. Common narcissistic defences include splitting, denial, projection, projective identification, primitive idealization and devaluation, distortion (including exaggeration, minimization and lies), and omnipotence.[10]

Psychologist Marsha M. Linehan has stated that people with borderline personality disorder often exhibit behaviors which are not truly manipulative, but are erroneously interpreted as such.[11] According to her, these behaviors often appear as unthinking manifestations of intense pain, and are often not deliberate as to be considered truly manipulative.

Manipulation to obtain nurturance, approval, attention and control over others is considered by the DSM-IV-TR and many mental health professionals to be a defining characteristic of borderline personality disorder. Manipulative behavior is also common to narcissists, who use manipulation to obtain power and narcissistic supply. Those with antisocial personalities will manipulate for material items, power, and a wide variety of other reasons.[12]

Histrionic personality disorder

People with histrionic personality disorder are usually high-functioning, both socially and professionally. They usually have good social skills, despite tending to use them to manipulate others into making them the center of attention.[13]

Machiavellianism

Machiavellianism is a term that some social and personality psychologists use to describe a person’s tendency to be unemotional, and therefore able to detach him or herself from conventional morality and hence todeceive and manipulate others. In the 1960s, Richard Christie and Florence L. Geis developed a test for measuring a person’s level of Machiavellianism (sometimes referred to as the Machiavelli test).[14]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Psychological_manipulation