Triangulation-How It Works

Triangulation can occur in any relationship, but it is very common in a relationship with a narcissist. It may happen at home, at work, with friends, or within in family of origin. He may pit you against another woman, several other women, his mother, his friends, or any other person he can get to engage in his “victim-playing” who is willing to serve the role he assigns. He may also adopt the role of Persecutor to assign blame or Rescuer to maintain control of his image. In the end, this travel around the triangle is how he dumps shame and finds someone to blame for his misery. If there is always a role to play, there is always a way to escape responsibility by shifting the position on the triangle.

The answer to the exhaustive push and pull of a triangulated dynamic in a relationship with a narcissist is to simply step off the triangle and refuse to play. It’s a game you cannot win.

Control by Triangulation
If all else fails, the abuser recruits friends, colleagues, family members, the authorities, institutions, neighbours, any third party to do his bidding. He uses them to cajole, coerce, threaten, stalk, offer retreat, tempt, convince, harass, communicate and otherwise manipulate his target. He controls these unaware instruments exactly as he plans to control his ultimate victim. He employs the same mechanisms and devices. And he always dumps, his props, unceremoniously when the job is done.
Another form of control by triangulation is to engineer situations in which abuse is inflicted upon another person. Such carefully crafted scenarios of embarrassment Narcissist's Prayerand humiliation provoke social sanctions (condemnation, opprobrium, social exclusion and shame) against the victim. In this instance, society becomes the instrument of the abuser .By clever seduction, through words and posturing, he entices his pawns to do his dirty work for him. Unaware, they exclude his victim, being persuaded by his rendition of truth, they take up his cause and his right and align themselves against the one he controls.

The malignant narcissist creates perpetual triangles around the one he desires to control. He sees through these eyes, eyes with no empathy, that perpetuates constant, residual torment, for his partner. Claiming that he is being tormented by his victim, he creates rescuers who then torment his victim, thinking they are protecting him from the “bully”. Doing this through his friendships, family members, associates and whoever he can entice; he remotely views his operation, like a director of a movie. In other words, he will frame a picture and put his secondary supply in that frame,the borders always being the shape of a triangle and the picture within, being a distorted truth he propagates. Usually, the claims he makes of his victim are the truth of himself and while hiding behind his victim, he will spin doctor and gaslight until he gets his desired result. Defamation of character and destroying the credibility of the one he victimizes is his goal. He convinces his pawns that his victim is the persecutor and he is the victim. The naked eye cannot see this game of illusions and that is why he engages others into his web. They do for him what he orchestrates in secret.

All I can say is wow.  I copied this entire post from Sea of Glass on FB You can click anywhere on the post to go directly to her site.  Every word is relevant to my current experience with my sister and my ex and I could not say it better.  None of the above words are my own, although they clearly define my experience to a tee.  If you see it happening, do not be a bystander.  This makes people want to die….Seriously devastating.  

Much Love,
Magda Gee

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4 Replies to “Triangulation-How It Works”

  1. Magda Gee,
    Do you worry that you make yourself look less stable or more of a troublemaker by posting? I worry for you.

    And, I think you are helping others. This is a delicate matter and to be honest, this is how the bulk of power in our culture is configured. It is mainstream. And to that end, you are being subversive.

    Warrior on with my blessing.

    1. ToneA-
      My main concerns are the depression of being treated this way and the hostility that is always intense, and sometimes more so. These things diminish the quality of life for my boys. As co-parents, went from working together for a year before moving cross country together as a family, but not a couple, special occasions and collaboration to unspeakably bitter/volatile, no eye contact, hostile tension. How could we feel anything other? He has joined forces with people whom I divorced also and who stop at nothing to have THEIR way. So between his angry sister and mine just looking for a host for the 50 years of rage hidden behind the things they use to hide behind. It is so inappropriate.

      I do believe sharing helps me, and others. How I have appeared has been something which I have spent little time worrying about since I was pronounced unworthy and crazy from an early age. Maybe the gift of low self esteem, the legacy of narcissism and black sleeping and scape goating.

      I was fucken free from all of them and now- my children are hostage to the fall out of this despicable union. My boys never knew I had a sister before the move. And they do not know another Aunt either who has also been treated this way. My mother did raise us to believe “Your enemy’s enemy is your best friend.”
      So, do I care how I look? Not one bit? The only people to be offended are those who think they are right or better or that I am crazy or deserving and guess what. They are not my business. My children are.

      I am disappointed by reader emails, rather than the open comments(because I seek open dialog, not closeted convos), that maybe I should back off or let it go. And always leaning towards let them be, they are doing the best they can or just live your life. If only, I could…My sister probably claims she is so all loving by including my “ex” and his family, like she is so expansive and gracious. She is not. Those are shitty things to do and while of course it hurts me personally, what I cannot stomach is what my children get to learn, lump, pretend, and deny, just so they can live in this way.

      Thank you for being here, for asking, caring, showing up, not judging.

      Magda Gee

  2. Oh! Oh! Oh! Is this ever what my second AH did, was, the game he played. You are right. This is devastating, it does make people want to die (or kill or run away). In our case, he was so clever about this, I was so young, a 22-year-old divorcee. How well I remember the oft-heard statement from his friends, my friends, various family members: “You’re so lucky. He’s the nicest (brightest, most caring, interesting, generous) man I’ve ever met, and anyone can see he adores you.”

    Crazy-making, when you know he seldom comes home for dinner, constantly breaks promises, gets you to dress and look your best so HE looks good by proxy. Yes, I know what “arm-candy” means. Guess what? I just made that connection as I wrote it. I would never in the world think of myself as “arm-candy” yet that was one of my main functions for him. But he constantly embarrassedme by his public displays of idiocy – actually dancing with a lampshade on his head once, another time suddenly leaping to his feet in a lovely restaurant where my parents had taken us for an anniversary dinner. “I’m late for a meeting,” he said. “I am going to the Little League planning meeting for this year. They have several important things to decide, and I have to get the Hell over there and tell them how to do it.”

    He had no connection to, or real interests in ,the Little League. Oh, buggers! Boogers! I hated that man.

    He has died. I didn’t kill him, I divorced him. “Patient endurance attaineth to all things.” Hanging in there and getting out on your own is powerful medicine.

    Building and lovingly maintaining your support system is key. He is not able to hurt you if you don’t play. What do they say? “The best revenge is a life well lived.” So…..

    I give you my love and support from across the continent.

    1. Yes, yes, yes. I am trying to live life well, though the depression is real and while I avoid active combat or even acknowledgment for the bullshit, it is sickening to me. I love the life and loyalty we have here in our home. He can not take that away or purchase anything or create any event act could ever compare to what happens for us and between us. Our love, loyalty, and connection is much greater than anything he will ever do or that I will ever feel with regards to him and them. I give them nothing to work with. My greatest crime is having boundaries and sharing my experience here. Thank you for being here, for being a trusted other and an enlightened witness who walks the path with me, sometimes in silence and sometimes with nods of recognition…but always with me. I love you!

      Magda Gee

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