Provocation Followed by Stonewalling

A sociopathic favorite: target aggravation guaranteed.
Provocation Followed by Stonewalling

See also:

When the sociopath stonewalls you
What is Stonewalling?
Stonewalling or The Silent Treatment
Sociopathic Stonewalling


Vulnerabilities Exploited by Manipulators

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According to Braiker,[1] manipulators exploit the following vulnerabilities (buttons) that may exist in victims:

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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.

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According to Kantor,[3] the following are vulnerable to psychopathic manipulators:

  • too trusting – people who are honest often assume that everyone else is honest. They commit themselves to people they hardly know without checking credentials, etc. They rarely question so-called experts.
  • too altruistic – the opposite of psychopathic; too honest, too fair, too empathetic
  • too impressionable – overly seduced by charmers. For example, they might vote for the phony politician who kisses babies.
  • too naïve – cannot believe there are dishonest people in the world or if there were they would not be allowed to operate.
  • too masochistic – lack of self-respect and unconsciously let psychopaths take advantage of them. They think they deserve it out of a sense of guilt.
  • too narcissistic – narcissists are prone to falling for unmerited flattery.
  • too greedy – the greedy and dishonest may fall prey to a psychopath who can easily entice them to act in an immoral way.
  • too immature – has impaired judgment and believes the exaggerated advertising claims.
  • too materialistic – easy prey for loan sharks or get-rich-quick schemes
  • 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.
  • too lonely – lonely people may accept any offer of human contact. A psychopathic stranger may offer human companionship for a price.
  • too impulsive – make snap decisions about, for example, what to buy or whom to marry without consulting others.
  • too frugal – cannot say no to a bargain even if they know the reason why it is so cheap
  • 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.

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Nice and friendly?

Aside

Since, in the majority of cases, people who indulge in abuse are selective about whom they abuse, other people are typically surprised—or in disbelief—when hearing that someone is experiencing on-going and periodic abuse from someone they know and have always seen as nice and friendly. “Nice and friendly” is the persona of many conmen, abusers, and killers. Although many folks really are as nice and friendly as they seem, some most definitely are not.


13 rules for dealing with a sociopath

Aside

According to Dr. Stout, author of The Sociopath Next Door

  1. Accept that some people have no conscience; that there are evil people in this world who do not act out of concern or love for another.
  2. Listen to your instincts — labels (professional roles) do not make a good person. Look carefully at someone who “carries” a professional label, judging whether that individual’s behavior fits what is expected of that professional role.
  3. Practice the rule of threes — One lie or broken promise may be a misunderstanding, two lies may involve a serious mistake, three lies — the individual is not trustworthy. Stay away from that individual.
  4. Question authority.
  5. Suspect flattery — when someone flatters you excessively, telling you how much they appreciate you or like it when you visit or how much they enjoy your conversations.
  6. Redefine your concept of respect — respect must be earned. Don’t automatically give respect to an individual because of her professional role or her relationship to you.
  7. Refuse to join the game — do not try to outsmart the sociopath. Do not reduce yourself to his level.
  8. Once you identify a sociopath, avoid him, refuse any kind of interaction. It is the only way to protect yourself.
  9. Question your tendency to pity too easily. Anyone who actively campaigns for your pity or consistently hurts others is likely a sociopath. Pity should be reserved for those who truly deserve it. Make sure the individual who seeks your help really needs it.
  10. Do not try to redeem the unredeemable. If you are dealing with someone without a conscience, you cannot change them, no matter how educated or loving you are. Sociopaths have no reason to change; they like who they are.
  11. Never agree to help a sociopath conceal her true character. You don’t owe the sociopath anything. Don’t believe that you are like her, no matter what she says. You are nothing like her.
  12. Defend your psyche. Humanity is not a failure. Being kind and loving and caring is the best way to live. It is the way most people live their lives.
  13. Living well is the best revenge.