Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Braiker on Motives of Manipulators

From Harriet Braiker's
How to Break the Cycle of
Manipulation
and Regain Control
of Your Life

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Confusion About the Manipulator’s True Motives
(Pg 159 – 161)

The confusion that develops in the victim about the manipulator’s motives is often an integral part of the manipulative control… The victim’s confusion is magnified many times over when the manipulation occurs in the context of a family/marital/romantic relationship. In such relationships, there is a general expectation that love and altruism will prevail over the self-centered goals of manipulation. You may not expect those who say they love you to manipulate and exploit you, so you are likely to use the defense mechanism of denial to protect yourself from painful – although ultimately necessary – realizations…

Sometimes the victim’s confusion lies with the manipulator’s carefully disguised motives. Other times the victim’s own denial and fear keep him from recognizing the manipulative methods being used to control him…

Confusion about what the manipulator “really wants” or “truly wants” is the inevitable result of maintaining the silent contract to keep the manipulative agenda hidden or obscured. When direct communication – especially about the power and control dynamics of the relationship – is avoided, the most effective tactic for clarification and for ending or reducing confusion is crippled…

If it serves his or her purposes, a manipulator may well seek to disguise his or her motives simply by lying about them.
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