I get that FDS tells women to block and delete, with good reason. Some men are what we call "sniffers" who demand way too much attention like overgrown toddlers. Texas Lawyer Guy was one such sniffer, and I am super glad to be going on Camino with him out of the picture. No distractions, total time to focus on myself. I look forward to getting off the merry-go-round of the world for a while. Overall, over the past couple of months, it's worked simply to ghost him, requiring next to no effort on my part: a swipe left, hit delete, done. Instantly forgotten, and I go on with my day, with my life, sans a sniffer. Today, though, I had an epiphany: this guy is a narc, and it's why he's persisted and even perseverated well past the expiration date. It's been a couple of MONTHS now that we've said goodbye, and he's still attempting contact after being ghosted. Pathetic.
Yes, I had contemplated (for about five minutes) sending him a pic of me in front of the cathedral at Santiago and/or at Finisterre, but not worth it, too petty, and it would mean that I cared what he thought when I do not care at all. Or rather, yeah, I care slightly, very very slightly, ie 1%, but not enough to open that door again. I care much more about proving to myself I can walk a full Camino. Sending him a pic would be vengeful and petty, so not worth it on many levels. It would also mean opening up the door to communication again, and NO, a HARD no. With him being 90% positive and kind, but 10% snarky and saying really dumb, insensitive shit? (Comparing me as an introvert to Richard Simmons who's become a shut-in? UGH, what fuckery and stupidity. Anyone who doesn't comprehend my entire temperament doesn't deserve my company!) Big, big no thanks. And anyway, if he shadows me on Facebook, he'll see I did it anyway, so no need for a picture.
However, I also have a policy of blocking people on Facebook and other social media, but I'll go back later and unblock them because I simply don't want to remember who they are, and I don't want to remember any anger or annoyance. I just want to release them. Ninety-nine times out of 100, they never get back in touch with me, and both of us just go on with our lives, which suits me fine. I like not having anyone blocked, which feels to me like a tiny act of good karma all around, and I like even more not even remembering their names.
Of course TLG was the 1%. He texted me randomly yesterday and said so sorry about Chloe, my cat that I had to put down last week; she was just beginning to suffer from kidney failure, and I knew she wouldn't survive my being gone for months, so I had to be the one to let her go. I cried SO MUCH that day and all the end of last week. My first visceral reaction to his message was to roll my eyes so far back, I saw my own brain. Just UGH. I probably made the mistake of actually reading what he said then deleting, but whatever, it's done now. Obviously I didn't bother to respond, because honestly, what is there to say? If I had said "thanks" I wouldn't have meant it. I do NOT want to open the door to communication again. It was kindly meant this time, but I am leery, super leery of him. That whole 90% kind, 10% shitty vibe from him just ruins everything.
Another lesson learned: blocking and deleting a man that I met on a dating site is different than just a random blowup on social media and blocking. This rejection is more personal. And because TLG is a low-level narc, I believe, he does that typical narc shit of trying to reel me back in, ie hoovering. So now I see: no wonder block, delete, unblock worked 99% of the time, because there was an initial blowup or someone said something unkind and/or stupid, but it was just social media, it was a tenuous connection at best, so of course people would just go on with their lives, and we'd forget each other. This guy, however, because it was dating and he's a narc, he can't stand rejection, being ghosted, being ignored. I'm quite sure, going forward, that block, delete, unblock will continue to work online for other tenuous connections, but no more ever giving a random male access to me via social media until and unless I'm extremely sure things will work out long-term. You just never know who's a narc, because they all appear superficially charming, nice, kind at first. His mask has slipped. I will never trust him again, and there's no need to.
However, his texting me at a time when he must have thought I was vulnerable sent a clear message to me, in that he may very well have a savior and/or a superiority complex, and would prefer to be the one in power in any relationship. He is a lawyer, after all, and most males see life in terms of competition, power, control, and dominance. I don't think he's the exception like Jack was (and other men I've known who honestly GET women, and who know how to put the power/competition dynamics on hold, and be cooperative and collaborative, and understand why and how that works).
Once again, it just leads me to think that we'd have clashed and broken up YET AGAIN, since I don't show vulnerability much if ever, especially to someone I don't know well, who has been unsupportive and ignorant in the past. I needed support online, and well over 100 people came through with such kindness. It's simply unsafe with him to ever show vulnerability. With his comments about my health (in complete ignorance), and telling me to consider doing the Camino another time, which was gaslighting and trying to clip my wings, I don't think he would have liked or appreciated or ever celebrated any success I had, especially going forward with my catering business.
I think he would have wanted to keep me small, even somewhat dependent, and would have wanted to break me down over time. None of that ever would have happened, especially at my age and stage of life. I am flying high and free — more free now than ever, although I've engineered my entire life for as much personal freedom as possible! Moreover, I'm now older and wiser to the ways of men's fuckery, so very little of that gets past me.He is the kind of man who THINKS he's well-intentioned, but who is NOT. I think he wants power and control, especially emotional power and control, way more than collaboration and cooperation. I don't think he can be genuinely happy for others, and I also think he's a foul-weather friend, someone who swoops in when someone is low, vulnerable, needy, so cue the savor/superiority complex. (I wasn't when I dipped a toe into OLD, but I'm pretty sure he thought I was. Mistake #1.)
I think he wants an auxiliary, a subordinate, a more traditional, sweet little woman than I ever could or would be, and I also think he'd get a sick thrill trying to chop off small pieces of me bit by bit, as a power game. Peter tried that shit with me, it worked only a little, very short term, then I started putting myself back together and then some, and of course left him. I saw this coming from TLG a mile away, having dealt with Peter, and I'm not having any of his fuckery and stupidity. Clearly I need someone much like Jack who is a true equal in every way, someone who is genuinely glad of any success, who has no agenda to make/keep me small or subordinate, who can lead as well as follow. Someone who is egalitarian in every way, and genuinely so.
Besides, there is nothing to say to TLG. My anger and resentment would come out almost immediately. I also don't want to tell him precisely how he fucked up; I don't want to enable him to be a better manipulator to another woman in the future. I don't think he would have apologized anyway; I think, if he's the covert, low-level, mostly benign narc I kind of suspect he is, there would be DARVO shit and another breakup. And then he'd start the reeling in again. Every single time, it'd get more and more toxic, so who needs any of that? Just NO.
What I've learned from this is, when I do get back on OLD, download Google Voice and give men ONLY that number, because it's not my actual number, and can be changed as needed, so it's quite easy to ghost men who simply don't measure up. Don't give them access to social media for the first several months of vetting. In fact, I'd consider not allowing him any more access than texting to any man until an official offer of exclusivity (and monogamy, long-term) is made, and even then, give it a year or so -- no need to add on social media especially if he lives close and we see each other often. Keep it to text. Do an initial phone call within the first week to establish if there's good flow of conversation, and to see that he doesn't try to talk over, interrupt, mansplain. And try to meet ASAP of course in public, to see again how the flow is, what my gut says, how easy conversation is.
Bottom line, I will train him like I've trained who knows how many hundreds if not thousands of men online to leave me alone. I will starve him of any and all attention. I'm not even tempted now to reply to him, to get into it, now that I know what hoovering is. He will be trained. He will leave me alone. He. Will. Be. Trained. Into. Silence. I've done it many times before with all other men online, and he is no different. He is just another, and he is just as disposable as every other male online who failed the vetting process. The only difference is that The Idiot With 10,000 Names does keep hoovering me, simply because his only talent at all is changing names online, and even then, I still shoot him down and reject him 100% of the time, and am always the one to end things and wish him well as I send him on his merry way, since he's clumsy, crude, needy, traditional, a parent, religious, conservative: absolutely everything I dislike in a man.
TLG has taught me several things now that dating is way different in the 21st century; before, I was a 20th century dater, but the world has changed. I'm grateful for his advice on creating an LLC for my business, but be damned if I use him, of course; I'll use someone here in town, who, even with my home address, won't even think of stalking me, and who will just be performing a service, and will forget me as soon as I walk out the door, which is precisely what I want to happen. I'm grateful for him for ALL the negative lessons about dating, very useful indeed. I'm grateful he talked to me about GoLo, the diet mix, and I want to look into that further when I get back.
As it is now, I'm about to go out to lunch then shopping with my niece, and hopefully see her and her husband and my great-niece in a day or two for a last dinner before I depart. Chloe is now out of suffering and forever in my heart, and although that's bittersweet, I'm so glad I had her for over 11 years, and gave her 100% love, devotion, and a good, calm, stable, consistent life with tons of affection. I'm glad she had me so she could learn to trust again. I'm also going to work out every day until the time I leave. I'll re-pack at some point and consult my packing list. I'll go to the gym and weigh my pack again one last time, too. I have a feeling it'll be around 14 lbs, still less than half of what I could carry. It'll get lighter and lighter the more I use up meds and put on layers of clothes.
I am excited. And I'm happy to see TLG for who and what he is, dismiss him, and carry on with life and another exciting adventure. And if need be, I absolutely WILL block him again, but for now, I prefer not to have him or anyone on block. That's a weird little personal preference, and I own it. I'm still learning with this guy, since I haven't run into many narcs at all in my life, so time will tell if he is that 1% who gets a perma-block. I'm always willing to change my mind given new data.