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I had an epiphany today, and it was deep and painful.

I've been reflecting on the power moves that I found other people tried to pull off to distance me and my partner - in restaurants, family, friends scenarios, and acquaintances.

Just for the sake of this post, I'll recall two of the eye-opening scenarios I spoke about on this forum:

  • one was the guy I spoke about here (who basically faked not seeing me to salute my partner before me). Lucio later commented on the jokes the guy made after the event:
Quote from Lucio Buffalmano on August 11, 2022, 12:01 am

Did you also spot the disempowering frame there?

That's the frame of one who courted through material giving. And material giving in dating is sometimes -not always!- used to make up for a sexual market value imbalance -ie., the frame being "she's higher value than him"-.

A strong check on this one:

Him: (to me) So how many bottles did you pass to her?
You: oh, we pass each other things (turns the frame from "I court and take care of her" to "we take care of each other"). It's you I'm not sure I'd pass anything (laughs out loud)

(BTW: the lesbian waitress who was trying to pick up my partner in front of me really was a lesbian waitress trying to do so - I know because we went back there and I was aware and closely watched her - but this is for another post).

Initially I thought these were just assholes I met by chance. Now I realize the issue was me, and these people were just poking the boundary holes I did have.

I had the epiphany today that I do have been (unconsciously) trying to make up with material things in my long term relationship with my girlfriend, because I was (unconsciously) lower value than her from an SMV point of view.

The psychopath asshole who faked not seeing me was just very power aware, and noted the chink in my armor - so to speak.

Which I was already beginning to repair at that time.

I just know this, because:

  • after studying and applying PU, my partner has started to really be attracted to me at a primordial physical level, like she never was -  and I as well to her;
  • all the power moves from her are disappearing: she now tries to be more loving, more close, more helpful than ever;
  • my "material giving" has been steadily reducing (unconsciously) all the while since I started PU, and now is basically almost zero;
  • it has started to happen that other women whom I find attractive approach me (especially in stores) or show high interest, sometimes even when my partner is present. And she has noted it as well.
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Lucio BuffalmanoKavalierMats G

I suppose my recent reflections about sociopaths are ultimately a form of self-denial.

The reality is that I was looking to find an excuse as to why I was destroying (and probably have destroyed, somewhat so far) my life, my relationship, and everything, that would allow me to maintain the frame that

"I was a good guy".

Yet, I wasn't a "good" guy.

I was just fearful, dominated, submissive, naive and even manipulative.

Unable to stand up for myself.

The anthitesis of a man.

And I lost so many opportunities and life in that mode.

And I made so many enemies out of my former way of being.

And, I can't yet see all the people who just took advantage of me and bullshitted me as "good" or even "normal".

A part of me still hates them. A part of me still hates everybody I knew before studying PU.

I hate people for the fact that they naturally took advantage of my being weak.

But it's probably ultimately another form of self-denial and self-protection.

And behind it is some form of self-hate.

I suppose this is why I'm currently feeling the need to be alone.

To get distance and accept all this. Accept that the real problem was, in fact, me.

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Lucio BuffalmanoJohn FreemanKavalierZathrianMats G

Beautiful write up, Bel.

I know you didn't necessarily mean it to be appealing and wasn't looking for that angle/compliment.
But I don't have much to add, and sometimes you can just nod along, think it makes sense, and notice how "beautifully raw" it is.

Could write a book one day: "Bel's awakening" or something.

Just maybe I'd wonder how come the realization was "deeply painful".
I mean, I can see how it can be.
But I can also see other scenarios where it's not painful and you take it either neutrally, or even positively given all the good things that are coming from it.

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John FreemanKavalierMats GBel
Have you read the forum guidelines for effective communication already?

I see that in some time this will be a positive awakening.

But the current truth is that my life just went through a total perspective change, and I don’t know what I want, and how I want to live anymore.

I feel no attachment anymore to values that I thought were sacred, and to people I thought were close ties.

I see that in getting to this awakening I basically destroyed every social tie I had.

To be fair, the process had started in me before getting on TPM. If I hadn’t gotten here, I believe the destruction would have been even more and all-encompassing. Learning from here taught me a way to salvage some things and some people while still maximizing the chance of getting what I really wanted. Because, the other outcome would have been total isolation.

But I saw too many times psychopaths or sociopaths get the prize while I went empty handed and bullied.

I hate dark triads because they get the prize by being bad, while I went alone and bullied and void of pleasure in my life for so long by not being able to play the game, not even honestly.

If the reason to not be bad is to keep social ties, than what benefit did I derive from being “not bad” if I wasn’t even able to have this single advantage?

Women did not want me. Bosses did not want me nor respect me. Friends did not want to keep in touch. Clients tended to disappear.

It was really hell on earth. I suppose my psychopath former boss was able to maintain more social ties by behaving manipulatively than I was able by being submissive.

This is really a destruction. And it went on for all my life, all the while I couldn’t see it.

And if I hadn’t found you, I don’t know what would have happened to me.

I didn’t even fully understand what “pleasure” really meant until now.

Yes, I now could restart, and slowly establish all that I didn’t have.

But I find myself not really wanting to, now. I find myself wanting to be alone.

I often had these thoughts these days about slowing down work and de facto closing down my practice / driving clients away. Which is ironic, considering that what I learned here has definitely improved my business.

I realize that I became a lawyer, unconsciously, as I was looking to protect myself with the power of the law, since I had no protection from power moves.

And then I found the profession was full of dark triads.

Now I’m able to see that there is a parallel in what I was subconsciously doing in all areas of my life:

- blocking and removing ties with friends and relatives;

- driving away clients;

- stopping fully believing and being committed to growing in my relationship.

I was - am still? - maybe trying to destroy everything to start from scratch. To start a new life.

And, I lost some morality. I lost some faith. I lost direction. I lost some empathy.

I don’t know if I now have to give up on other things to grow further, or if there’s something in my life that can still be salvaged.

I’m losing more and more interest for doing things the “socially acceptable way”.

And at the same time, I have to admit I’m still plagued by some remnants of morality that do not let me feel totally free to behave in the way I could to get more results and more life pleasure faster.

And it’s taking too long to be able to realize what has happened, and to learn these new ways, and now it’s going to take even longer to understand what I want.

I don’t know what I want anymore.

All that I thought I wanted were things that others wanted for me.

I lived a life that wasn’t mine. And I don’t want to live it anymore, even if it costs me everything I have.

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KavalierMats G

It's possible you may be going through some "stages of grief".

Some say it's common in the red pill, or even list as "necessary".

I don't see it as necessary at all though.

My take on this would be good old positive psychology and some "shock therapy" to put things in perspective (I'd personally react much stronger to this in person and I think that may help, but can't do it in writing, not nearly as effective and too easily to be misunderstood).

But look at the words, for example.

"Destruction" of your life?

Imagine what the people who just walked out of their houses that just turned into rubbles would think of that.
All they had gone up in smoke.
Maybe even some people in their lives gone up in smoke :S.

What would they think of that?

And it's happened and it's happening just a few hours away from you.

The "destructions" are very different, Bel.

Of course, some adjustments and some pains as one grow may be necessary... But as for everything, why extreme?

And of course, same as what we said in the other thread, not every "life achiever" is a psychopath / sociopath.

Many are not.
Most are not.

And even if a few are... And?

What's got that to do with you?


You can win as Bel.

How others win has nothing to do with you.

If anything, assholes who win should not discourage you, assholes who win should MOTIVATE YOU to win so you can do things just a little bit better, show a better way, a better example.
Because no, there may not be clear-cut angels and devils like in cartoons, but there are better people and better ways to do things. And even the smallest little step better is still a lot better.
That's the spirit that started TPM, by the way.

Same for the values: you're no more attached to values you thought sacred.
AND... ?
There's no inherent negative in that.
You're attaching negative feelings to that.

Plus, which "values"?

If they were BS values, great, good riddance.
If they were good, then keep them.

They have nothing to do with power awareness.

If we posit that I'm not too bad at power awareness, then I may be a good example.
And I still hold plenty of values. Including holding some of them very dear -and I'm SO happy I got rid and I'm still getting rid of the bullshit ones while refining the good ones-.

Same for women who are naturally more attracted to high-power men.

The only answer to that is... And?

Just like you're naturally more attracted to more attractive women.

So... ?

No surprise and nothing "bad" there either.

That does NOT (and probably should not) exclude the possibility of a great relationship / emotional bond.
Of course, the possibility doesn't mean anyone will get it for sure.
But being power are increase those odds.

Same for friendships, positive business relationships, etc. etc.

So, all in all, power awareness improves things.

But those are all "great to have".

Even in the worst-case scenario, you don't truly need any of that to be OK.

You're OK.

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JackMats GBel
Have you read the forum guidelines for effective communication already?
Quote from Lucio Buffalmano on May 27, 2023, 9:33 am

"Destruction" of your life?

Imagine what the people who just walked out of their houses that just turned into rubbles would think of that.
All they had gone up in smoke.
Maybe even some people in their lives gone up in smoke :S.

What would they think of that?

And it's happened and it's happening just a few hours away from you.

The "destructions" are very different, Bel.

One note on this as it can come across as unneeded harsh:

On one hand, nobody has the right to tell anyone else what's "real" pain.

One can be in very real pain even in the midst of total opulence.

On the other hand, I still think it's a fantastic and very valid approach.
Including potentially helping someone to put things in perspective.
And can be very effective, especially if delivered well -ie.: conviction-.

I'll skip further considerations for now.

Jack, Mats G and Bel have reacted to this post.
JackMats GBel
Have you read the forum guidelines for effective communication already?

Thank you Lucio.

I am ok. I’m not suffering much anymore, just very static and in some sort of monk mode these days.

Also, I never thought that power awareness was a problem.

On the contrary, it’s been salvation.

And I think that I lost the capability to live a good life for so long by not having it. That’s the “destruction” I was talking about.

Yes, I can start now rebuilding what I want. In some ways I have already started a bit. But mostly by removing.

But, I don’t want to forgive some people who led me down my former path - who will definitely pay the price of my absence, probably for the rest of their life.

And you are right, there’s much worse. Losing life is an obvious example.

But in falling down the rabbit hole for so long there’s a level of emotional and physical pain and desperation - that I especially experienced in the distant past, before starting my journey toward self-improvement at 24 - that can lead you to very bad places, where all you can think about is suicide and your life is put on hold.

Yes, I understand I can win at life more than a psychopath can. A normal empathic person who has power skills, if anything, is “superior” to a dark triad.

But to realize after so many years that some people were playing me - that the suffering I experienced was not coming from me, but was induced by abuse -; and to realize that me being abused led me to lose status, dates, jobs, life - is leading a part of me to think about revenge.

And I also lost some excitement at life. I am currently “going through the motions”.

You’re right, I’m probably still processing grief.

And also, I have changed. I’m not the Bel I was one year ago.

I don’t know if I want to continue living how he lived, or drastically change. I suppose this awareness will come naturally with time.

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Lucio Buffalmano

The truth is not that I’m in monk mode these days due to these realizations.

The truth is that I have been living in monk mode for most of my life, and only now I’m noticing it and wanting to start to live fully.

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Lucio BuffalmanoZathrian

High-investing clients

I find the lesson in SU about texting with high-investing women (who send many texts in succession) is also relevant to my professional practice.

In some ways, I have lately had the feeling that responding to a long-text high-investment email from a client with a single line answer was "wrong".

Now I realize that the same principle of "being available" applies. If you are interested in the client, you need to show you are willing to match his investment in the interaction.

I suppose this is a general principle, albeit I see a bit more leeway in work matters than with a woman one is dating.

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Lucio Buffalmano

Yep, that adds up real well, Bell.

You invest a lot less, you're bound to disempower the other person and/or break some rapport.

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Have you read the forum guidelines for effective communication already?
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