Beware of She-Wolves


By Samuel Lopez De Victoria, Ph.D.

A woman becomes a she-wolf out of necessity to survive in the relational jungle of life. She feels that there is no other way to make it through life successfully.

These women are not born that way and may have once been among the kindest of women. It took one or more major wounds to make her vicious.

Anyone who has dealt with a wounded, bitter, and angry woman knows quite well how much harm she can inflict, especially to men. This is a she-wolf.

She is a woman who has become a reactionary predator, just like the animal itself. Women who have become she-wolves need to be understood and have compassion towards them, yet that does not mean they stop being dangerous. Just like a wolf in the wild, they will destroy their prey and devour them should the opportunity arise.

They should be considered from a distance, but not ignored, and with minimal exposure, as you would in the presence of a real animal predator. Let the reader understand that there are similar abusive predatory men but that would be a topic of another article. He-wolves are also a reality.

I have endeavored to uncover, in a non-scientific way, what I consider typical traits of she-wolves. I have based these traits on anecdotal experiences (mine, as a therapist, and other’s) encountering these and watching them from a distance.

They can be found in families as a mother, aunt, sister, daughter, and even a grandmother. They can be married, single, divorced, or widowed, heterosexual, or homosexual. They are in the corporate world and in the creative arts. If one is married to one or works for one, there is much pain received and often unnecessary abuse received from them.

They typically go after men… but especially after strong confident men. Their attacks on these men come in the form of disrespect, talking down at, mistreatment, downgrading of position, leaving these men feeling castrated socially and emotionally.

They tend to attract only weak and soft men whom they can totally control yet disdain. They wonder why they cannot attract men that will courageously protect and defend them. Emasculated men who have them as mothers or are married to them, can easily and secretly hate and resent them. Experienced strong men will see these dangerous “creatures” from afar and will avoid them, seeing them as dangerous. They will conclude that the relationship is simply not worth the trouble.

God have mercy if she has a son. She will end up emasculating him. If he is an emotionally sensitive boy, he might learn that her mistreatment is reduced if he simply surrenders his manhood and conforms. If he chooses to save his masculine spirit, he may have to choose to metaphorically “kick her in the face” to get away from her and protect himself. She, no doubt, wonders why he spurns her love. Her version of love can be asphyxiating, controlling, enmeshed, and an impediment to becoming a self-assured man.

Many strong men can work interdependently with women but it is impossible to do so with a she-wolf since she is highly insecure and cannot share power. I have endeavored to come up with some characteristics that will help identify and understand this kind of troubled woman. Surely some women reading this might be tempted to brand me as a patriarchal, sexist, and “Machista” male, but they would be misinterpreting my position and possibly overreacting based on their own mistreatment and traumas. In some women’s minds, it is totally impossible to be a strong and confident male and still be a mature, loving, kind, and interdependent mate/lover/friend. They would be blindly projecting their own anger and their own absence of positive experiences instead of understanding this phenomena that proliferates in society and promoted in the media about women.

Consider these characteristics:

1. Wounded. She-wolves are wounded women. Each She-wolf has, at one time or another, received mortal wounds from persons she has trusted or assumed were safe. Eventually she chose to stop the bleeding and turn the tables in order to survive the jungle.

2. Wounded by an important man of her life. She-wolves, were mostly wounded by an influential and trusted man or series of men. The kind of person that wounded her could have been her own father, step-father, grandfather, husband, boyfriend, male friend, or others.

3. Angry. She-wolves are angry women. They have experienced so many personal boundary violations and disrespectful treatment that they turned angry and vicious. If someone were to crash through your house fence with a bulldozer and smash into your house, you would probably be very angry. This woman had to put up with many such “crashings” into her life without her permission. Her personhood has been violated.

4. Exhibits traits of narcissists. Many of the characteristics of narcissism can be seen in Shewolves (See my articles and videos on narcissism). Grandiosity can be seen in the form of being the maker and convenient breaker of rules. Narcissists are gods in their own mind. They have to have the last word and will not accept fault. They are better, bigger, and more amazing than others in their own opinion. Besides the grandiosity component of narcissism, there is another side for the she-wolf. That side is seeing herself as the greatest martyr ever. She suffers more than anyone else. No one dare to challenge her here because she will turn the tables on you and shame you for not being a caring person for her or as giving as her. Victimization is the other side of the narcissism coin.

5. Dangerous. You can never trust a wolf, especially a female one. A she-wolf has to be the Alpha-leader in a group. No matter how kind she may act, one must be careful for she can give you false impression that she cares for you. Don’t fall for that trap. She will gather precious information you share with her and will use it to destroy or blackmail you. There are fangs behind the lipstick.

6. Unsafe. There is no safety when you have a wounded and aggressive she-wolf. If you are a confident person and have a healthy self-image, you can easily be a threat to this type of woman. She wants strong persons, and especially men, to be weaker and subjugated to her. Otherwise, be ready to eventually come under her wrath. She despises men who do not need her. In some cases, it drives her to extreme anger and meanness.

7. Will sacrifice you. You mean nothing to a she-wolf. You are expendable. You are only useful insofar as you praise her, help her, agree with her, and conform totally to her will. Independence, or better yet, interdependence is not possible working with her. She-wolves, at their convenience, are adept at micromanaging and making triviality a federal offence.

8. No loyalties except to those who obey her unquestionably. She can reward her “yes” persons. She will say that they like her. In reality, they are afraid of her and can say unmentionable things about her behind her back. The she-wolf is under the delusion that people like her. The only persons who “like” her are those who are lesser she-wolves carrying out her wishes, or very insecure persons. She would fall into a depression if she were to find out the true ugly feelings people have in secret.

9. Will destroy you if you disagree or oppose her. In keeping with narcissistic traits, she takes on a godlike role thinking that her words cannot be contested. If she thinks you are counteracting a thought of hers, she feels threatened and will viciously attack you, possibly marking you for extinction. She does not have the ability to create Win-Win scenarios or patiently process conflict to distill misunderstandings and legitimate positions different from her worldview. She is entrenched in her positions with little flexibility.

10. Will never admit wrong or fault. Since the she-wolf is not open to correction, change will only come to her either by an extremely painful lesson (if she can learn) or by a superior authority forcing her to submit. She will hate it. She is deathly scared of being terminated to shameful nothingness or extreme humiliation by falling out of grace with a higher “alpha-dog.” With equals in positions of authority, she can be very congenial, yet ruthless with underlings. Humble maturity needed to admit error, especially with an underling, is basically impossible.

11. Can give the illusion she likes you and that you can trust her. She is experienced at asking questions and probing to gather information about you. Your loose lips will be your demise when you deal with a she-wolf. Anything you say can and will be used against you. Since she does not care about you, ultimately, she will easily sacrifice you on the altar of her whims and thus trash your life and reputation.

12. Ruthless and authoritarian/oppressive leadership or motherhood. She is the Master-Castrator. Remember she is angry at men who were supposed to legitimately love and care about her, yet failed. She is on a revenge campaign. If she is a mother, she resents male independence that does not need mother and cannot control. She will easily incapacitate her son and label him as an ingrate child when he rejects her suffocating control. If she cannot control him, she will, in desperation, abandon him since she does not like to hear the truth that she is an emasculator. In this type of situation, she will take on the mantle of sainthood and proclaim herself as the Ultimate Sufferer of her family. Daughters will see their sibling brother as a rebellious child that hurts their mother. They will turn on him and see him as a black sheep. Those daughters are in training to become the next oppressive matriarchal she-wolves. They will attract weak and wimpy men, then wonder why they have that kind of controllable and indecisive man in their lives.

13. Will not accept dissent/departure from her rules. Of course, she excludes herself from them. She makes iron clad rules and will require absolute adherence from her underlings. Never mind if those rules are illogical, unreasonable, and non-practical. She, acting like a god, will make exceptions for herself and for anyone she chooses to grace with her temporary favor.

14. Talks down at you disrespectfully assuming you are guilty without the benefit of doubt. The she-wolf greatly lacks the ability to be humble and conciliatory. She does not know how to look at a situation without personal bias and make a balanced and just judgment. She cannot accept the very probable possibility of a misunderstanding and being wrong or even accepting other valid worldviews. When she is glandular, angry, and reactive, she will immediately assume someone is culprit and pronounce a sentence without having thoroughly checked the facts and perspectives.

15. Does not truly listen nor wants to. Once she has made up her mind, her narcissism does not let her listen. She has to be absolutely correct. She is unmovable and extremely stubborn in her entrenched positions, in other words, she is a closed-minded person. It is not possible to have a reasonable talk and resolution of a problem with her. There are no misunderstandings possible with her once she decides she is correct. Sometimes, to give the illusion that she is balanced and listens, she listens very briefly with a made-up mind and then has a long list of rapid fire accusations she shoots at you with her verbal machine gun. This is a situation where it is practically impossible to dissent and get a fair hearing. She walks away self-assured that she was considerate of you, but still got the upper hand and, destroyed you.

16. Bad people manager. Her people hate her behind her back. A she-wolf is not good at bringing out the best in persons. Since she has anger issues and has to dominate with no questioning, she is prime candidate to be a dictator. A dictator rules by fear. A dictator gets a macabre sense of pleasure doing this and that people can be terrified of her… an unhealthy and sick response.

17. Strong, confident, and respectful men threaten her. She tends to attack them because she can’t handle or control them. Since a wolf is a predator and hunter, strong men with a sense of confident warrior-like traits become her enemies. This is because they look like competitors when they are not. She carries a sword all the time. It is good that a woman does carry a sword for those emergency moments she is genuinely in danger. The problem is when she carries it all the time, 24/7. That shows the person has emotionally unhealed issues. A strong, healthy, and confident man reminds her, because of a dysfunctional and mistaken interpretation, of the abuse she received from unhealthy abusive men. She is threatened by and is in competition with these men. She can be as lethal as a male hunter… probably worse. She prides herself in emasculating men. If she writes, she chooses to project through topics that turn her anger into acceptable and “legitimate women’s abuse issues.” She will be rewarded greatly by expressing her anger through championing women’s abuse topics. This is a way to sanitize and have her anger socially and academically accepted. The only kind of men she can possibly accept as a “friend” are those with no spine, praise her incessantly, and obey her unquestionably. Deep down she does not respect this type of man. In this arena, she is a walking contradiction.


She-wolves are not to be trusted. They can do incredible harm to you. They carry a sword 24/7. Try to stay totally away from them. If you have to deal with them, do so minimally to reduce your risk of getting eaten alive. Do not disclose much and give ammunition to her. If you are a confident and healthy man, be careful, for you will be metaphorically emasculated. There is hope for a she-wolf if she admits she is one and carries great anger. She can heal if she gets professional counseling from a psychotherapist, pastoral counselor, or psychologist that is well experienced working with narcissists and controlling persons. Above all, while you guard yourself from them, have, even if at a distance, compassion for her as a hurting person. Hurt people do hurt people.

Paul Layden said,

February 20, 2014 @ 2:30 pm

Dr. Sam:

As you may remember, **** and I came to see you. I had already read your article entitled “Beware of She-Wolves”. I had long suspected **** as having many characteristic of Borderline Personality Disorder (which may include features of other personality disorders; such as Narcissistic Personality Disorder and Histrionic Personality Disorder and Antisocial Personality Disorder).

I believe what you wrote in your article entitled “Beware of She-Wolves” captures in a nut-shell women such as these. It is also extremely useful because of it’s appeal to the average male.

After our meeting, many things changed. **** could not let go of the past and was very quick to point out that I was “smoking more than ever”, “once an alcoholic, always an alcoholic”, perpetually accusing me of “having sex with your roommate”, “having sex with prostitutes”, “having affairs with women online”.

Although I can be very forgiving, especially in the light of known pathology, these daily tirades and accusations make me aloof, distant, and at several points in the past few days – I just felt like packing up my stuff and leaving.

In essence, I believe that **** shares more characteristics of a She-Wolf, than most other women. If we are to meet again, I just wanted you to know this.


She-Wolf Victim

(You can use my comments on your blog as long as replace all identifying information.)

Brett said,

February 25, 2014 @ 9:57 pm

So what you are describing as a She – Wolf is a NPD , BPD or other personality disordered Woman ? You are right 100% about them hating confident men , they stare with hate in their eye’s and can’t stand me laughing having fun.

Martijn said,

March 5, 2014 @ 1:53 am

I am recovering from a devastating breakup that tore me apart, just a week ago. This girl is much younger than me, I am 40 and she is 19 and she turned from a caring sweet wonderfull companion to indifferent, cruel and aloof in just 3 days !! I posses ALL traits your described as being a prey for a narcissist and my mother was also as you described above. Still, I can’t seem to be sure if my now ex gf is this wolf (she does have an abuseive dad and even the cast away brother)or if I am just making her into a villain to soothe my pain, because I had a lot of pain. She never degraded me openly, or overtly told me what to do and we did not seem to have fights, I did not really feel like I had to conform to have points of view, yet I WAS walking on eggshells somehow and the thought of doing something that woukd disapoint her was unthinkable to me and everytime I saw a message I felt terrified somehow and addicted to her, inmensely scared to lose her. Yet, the thing is, all the while she has been charming, sweet, attentive, and also submissive in bed, everything a guy could want, not wolf like at all .. am I just naive or am I trying to mend a broken heart by blaming her ? Hope you share your thoughts with me !

Dr.Sam said,

March 5, 2014 @ 9:47 am

I would encourage you to move on. This is a brat-child you are with. How many 19 year olds are ready for a serious relationship? I don’t know too many. She is a child and is playing you probably just like she has played her parents. She is either a copy of them and/or they have been too lenient in letting her flip-flop through her mood swing extremes. She does not know how to regulate her emotions and you are the victim. I recommend you get a real adult as a mate. She has you under a spell. With all due respect, you have a fantasy in your mind with this person. Look at your “insides” and figure out what is in you that attracted this girl to you… a beautiful but selfish girl.

Ken said,

March 8, 2014 @ 9:56 am

This article and the other one about the Crying Narcs (those who play victim) are excellent reading. Great videos, too. It’s true what you said, have compassion for them at a GREAT distance. I’ve completely recovered (certainly with the help of your videos/articles), and gotta say, despite the entire ordeal, I’m much happier now than I ever was before the experience, because I’ve come to realize that I have nothing to feel guilty about, that she was a highly charged, combustible individual long before I had even met her, that I am seriously blessed to realize that I’m not a narc (they lead truly miserable lives of their own prideful making, both mentally and physically, with ailments as of their own anger), that I am able to let go of it all in a lighthearted manner, that it’s all very much like a distant dream that has taught me much about how to behave and how NOT to behave, that true lasting joy in me comes from within my heart and not from trying to please a narc, that being the total opposite of a narc is for me the key to living a truly meaningful and joyful life. I used to have narcissistic qualities myself (except I wasn’t an extreme narc because I have strong compassion for all humans) which was why I used to live a mildly depressed, somewhat angry life. After my ordeal with an extreme narc, I’ve permanently made up my mind to immediately rid myself of all remaining narcissistic tendencies within. This decision improved my life dramatically. But the ultimate improvement in my quality of life came when I decided with conviction to just stop being angry at myself/others (realizing that narcs are almost constantly angry within even if they don’t show it) and just “let go” by viewing every situation in a lighthearted way. When I took that leap of faith in myself, I realized that I had been holding onto anger for much too long, to my own mental and physical detriment. Being lighthearted enabled my energy level and immune system to significantly improve (previously, was getting sicker and sicker after that ordeal). Instead of turning me into a full-fledged vampire narc (as unfortunately happens to many of the prey that narcs seek out), I guess the better angel in me decided that enough was enough and that it was time to once and for all stop getting angry like narcs do and instead, focus on being lighthearted. This is difficult for many to do, i’m sure, because it hurts to be a “victim” of a narc. Took me quite a while, I’ll admit, but once I got to this level (and I believe anyone can if they don’t give up), I looked back with amazement and even amusement at it all and became grateful that the ordeal opened my eyes to a greater level of joy and fulfillment. Not saying that my experience applies to everyone, but I believe it’s possible to fully heal and become even stronger through proper introspection. Just my personal belief, because I am living proof of it. Just finding it in my heart to lightheartedly smile and even laugh at the whole ordeal did the healing for me. I’m no longer angry at myself/others. Thank you, Dr. Sam.

Ken said,

March 8, 2014 @ 10:13 am

Dr. Sam, I couldn’t agree more about your comment to Martijn. Certainly sounds like a “beautiful but selfish brat-child”. And, I believe that you’ve nailed it by saying that Martijn is under a spell. I sense it, too, because I used to be under that spell, too, also by a brat-child who was sweet and charming (she was 33, but looked 16, seriously). He has been enchanted by her sweet, charming, submissive facade of her, and she sounds just like the mythical Greek Sirens. But her innards appear to be extremely selfish and prideful. Good luck to Martijn.

Christy said,

March 13, 2014 @ 5:59 am

I am part She-wolf I guess….but this is only to deal with the Narcissist that I am presently tangled up in. I have been victimized way to much by him and now I want him to feel what hes done to me in the past 4 years. I have no problem with other men….but I want this one to pay for the pure hell and torment that he has inflicted upon me because I wanted to love him.

Susan said,

March 17, 2014 @ 3:35 pm

I am the second born of four children. Why my mother picked me I will never know. Trying to live up to her perfect home, perfect kids and having the perfect husband, was an unbelievably cruel life for me. Her voice was her hands anywhere she could hit me; my memories of her screaming still to this day cause me to freeze, thinking I’m going to be hit. It didn’t matter where; anywhere and by whatever means, hair brush, wooden spoon (I don’t remember how many were broken over me),a ruler or her hard slaps. She would then hug me and say she only did it because she loved me and wanted me to do better in school or look better or be better.
Undiagnosed Petit Mal night time seizures was the reason I didn’t do well in school. I had always thought it was the same recurring nightmare. It wasn’t because I was “The stupidest thing on earth” it was because I would lose a day of memory and what I’d studied for the night before a test. At the age of six, mother had gone somewhere for a few days and were looked after by a lady friend. I woke at 8:50 and panic set in. I was late for school. My mind raced. I was going to ‘get it’ from my teacher and why hadn’t mom woken me for school? I cried and cried in fear. I tried thinking back to Monday and work my way through the week but I got stuck on Wed., or was it Thurs? The lady friend had heard me crying and kindly said for me not to worry that there was no school today because it was Saturday. I was so happy, but why couldn’t I remember past days?
Undiagnosed until I was 30, and had one seizure while working in a hospital. I could hear a freight train coming through the wall getting louder and louder – but no one else was looking toward the sound, and i couldn’t speak.
I found out years later it was probably due to extreme stress. Not a look, not a tone and certainly anything that I said or did in front of others, I was screamed at and hit after we were safely behind bars again.
Nothing I did was ever good enough. Even as an adult, the clothes I wore were not suitable for events. She would drag me down the hall to their bedroom and pull something from her closet for me to wear. It didn’t matter that she was 5ft 6 and I am 5ft 3. You can imagine where the waistline was.
I had no idea what a narcissist was and certainly had little knowledge of life outside mother’s world – so I married one! After 8 years of humiliation, belittling, yelling at, controlling, and yes the Imaculate Conception of my daughter. Imaculate Conception due to the fact that he would only plant himself inside me during my period – once a month. There was never any affection on his part and certainly would not allow any from me. Still the seizures continued. I had given up on life and had made an appointment with my Dr. to remove an IUD because ‘he’ wanted another child. The Dr. didn’t remove the IUD because “I just didn’t care, one way or the other” I was empty. Nothing left. He had taken my sole.
I am 63 years of age with a very loving husband, four wonderful grown kids and six beautiful grandchildren whom we love to bits. We are so proud of our children; my firstborn daughter and three sons. They were raised with love, compassion, empathy and genuine arms and words of encouragement and are always there for them, no matter what and with no exceptions. It’s funny, they call me “their rock” or their ‘pit bull’. I prefer momma bear.
It’s only been three years that I decided to have NO CONTACT with my mother and my youngest sister; she is also cut from the same cloth. Lies, steals, twists anything she hears into her own truths. It’s only been two weeks that I accidentally found descriptions for narcissists, what and why they suck the life bood out of innocents only for their own fulfillment of their own unfullfilled lives. I’m done and now I am finally free. The memories are always fresh, and my burning question of ‘why’ makes a little sense knowing there are some dis-connections in the brain department. My mother is 89 yrs. of age and still doesn’t know what she’s done wrong and why won’t I talk to her! I congratulate myself for freeing myself from a She-wolf mother and he-wolf ex. Onward and upward. Thank you for hearing my voice.

Carlos B said,

June 27, 2014 @ 11:19 am

Helpful info here. Item 15: ’she listens very briefly with a made-up mind and then has a long list of rapid fire accusations she shoots at you with her verbal machine gun.’

It’s taken me too long realizing that ‘a best friend’ is indeed not. Consistantly shooting me down, making me feel that any decision is a wrong decision.

Telling me not to take one job and then later saying that would have been a good job and she knows people who really enjoy this type of work.

And…then seeing her true schadenfreude, hoping that I will have a failure or make a mistake similar to her own. One example, that I should have sold my house when I took a job out of state. I knowing it would only be temporary. Stating that I should ‘be a man’ by making a ‘ commitment to this new position and I would really do this by selling and fully moving and engaging to the new city. Such BS.

This really was to help herself feel better about the mistake she made selling a great house she bought at a low price with a view and moving out of state to get married. A decision she fully regrets. A home that has now tripled in price.

Another,telling me how disappointed she was that I did not attend a graduation event for her son, when I had to work that day. Not calling me for months after this, but then telling me she could not unfriend others that also were unable to attend. Because then she wouldn’t have any friends.

I must be a slow learner. Thank you for helping me remove the heavy curtain of my niceness, loneliness, people pleasing.

Theresa Bell Naticchia said,

September 20, 2014 @ 6:13 pm

I just have to add, suffering through humility, finding out who your friends truly are can be the cure. If you choose to move on. I have a strong man & in my mind I need that to keep me or in my case bring me to believing life can be better! Like the old cliche “everything happens for a reason”. I think faith & being raised by a strong woman, who over came so much, I would never “pity” myself,,,, for long. I am by nature a loyal, caring person but without a strong man, could very well be a “She Wolf”. Nobody ever said life was fair or easy & the sooner you deal with it, the sooner you can overcome. But I will never forget & one of favorite sayings ” If Karma is a B****h & Revenge is sweet, I’m the sweetest b****h you’ll ever meet ;) Great insight Sir!

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October 8, 2014 @ 8:09 pm

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Ted said,

November 4, 2014 @ 7:49 pm

Wow, this is a great piece! My wife has all of these traits. I have known this for a long time now. My father is a narcissist, too. I have been reading a great deal and journaling about my past and making sense of it all. I’ve written enough to write an entire book. My memoir has been a great journey for me. I have learned so much. I have done so much. I am so happy for having taken this time and opportunity to do this.

It is time for the wife and I to call it quits. We have been married for thirteen years and I don’t see anything ever changing with her. Like I said, she easily bears all the traits described in Dr. Sam’s article above, and then some. Everything is all about her, her, her, her, her, and her precious son. I am no good, a “diamond in the rough” who can’t do anything right, ever. It is she who will teach me how to behave and be a good man one day.

I just laugh. Just as I laughed at Dad. Dad, too, said that when I turned eighteen, “You’re joinin; the Marine Corps, boy. They’re gonna make a man outta you!” I’ve never understood why everyone is always trying to “make a man outta” me. I was a man already when I was a child. Had to grow up fast and learn how to fend for myself, being surrounded by all the vicious dogs that surrounded me when I was a boy. They taught me how to steal, lie, cheat, hide and wait, and do whatever I needed to do to survive. I walked through their landscape undetected, unnoticed, for most of my life. I knew all along they were all nuts. I knew that one day I would figure all this stuff out, and straighten it up, set things right, and set the record straight, and be happy and healthy. I have always wanted to do that.

She’s taken every dime we have and spent it all, lost it all, on business ventures she still thinks will pay off big one fine day. I managed to keep a little something, a little nest egg for myself, when I realized that this was going nowhere. When I cut her and her precious family off from any more of my money and/or my effort, she became hostile and could not understand why. Couldn’t I see that she was a beautiful business woman who will get us all success one fine day? I just couldn’t see it. I believed in her at first. When we started out together, she made every effort to secure my confidence and trust in her.

She wears these ridiculous outfits with giant birds and fruits and other objects in her hair. She spends hundreds of hours gazing at herself in the mirror, always admiring her “fresh face”. If I don’t compliment her on her appearance, she shoots me a vicious stare. I just chuckle. She always has to comment on how kind other people we meet think she is, even though no one has said anything of the kind. For the most part, I always see them getting uncomfortable around her and looking for a way to escape.

I chuckle because she is unaware of how close I am to leaving here and be done with her. She thinks everything is fine. Yes, when I tell her I am leaving, she goes to water. She falls apart and acts nice to me for a couple of days, thinking that will be sufficient to make me feel good enough to stay with her forever. She actually gets that idea stuck in her head and believes it. She is sadly mistaken. What really makes her sad about all this is the fact that I will be leaving her, not the other way around. She can’t bear the thought that it is I who initiates the separation and divorce. What? Lowly me wanting and needing to get away from incredible, wondrous, stupendous her and her perfect family? Unthinkable! Laughable! “Where will YOU go?” “What will YOU do?” “Why you’ve never had it so good!” What’s laughable is that they are pretty freakin’ far from perfect. This place is a dysfunctional nuthouse.

I will be landing stateside from a foreign country at the airport, with no place to go and little money, after living here with her family for almost a year. I had to come here and see if the illusion could be made real, as she always said it would. I was right. My suspicions were correct. It was not real. It was never even meant to be real. All this talk about running and owning businesses, getting rich, and blah, blah, blah… they can barely pay their bills, let alone pay me anything for my efforts and putting up with all their nonsense. And/or they are lying through their teeth. One day, I hear about how we, the family, are having money problems, the next, brother-in-law pulls up in the driveway, showing off his brand new truck. The first thing that came out of my mouth as he got out of his new vehicle with a big smile on his face, in my face, wasn’t “Congratulations!”, but rather, “New truck, eh? I thought we were having money problems? Here, I can’t even get a paycheck, but you got yourself a new truck. The old one wasn’t even two years old yet. What’s up with this?” Wife overhears the conversation and comes out to give me dirty looks, bad temper, and shut up! Liars. They’re making money all right. It’ just that I’m not going to get any of it. I can help them make it, but I can’t help them spend it or have any of my own.

I don’t think so.

Anyway, thanks again, for this great piece. I have learned so much over the last year or so that it’s mind boggling. Time to dump all the dead weight, move back stateside, and get on with it. Thank you, Dr. Sam!

Mike E said,

December 13, 2014 @ 3:52 am

Thanks for posting this article. I’ve been in a relationship with someone who my own therapist suggested might have BPD. After 3+ years of bending over backwards, and having a child with her, I’m now in the process of attempting to get equal custody rights of our daughter. Just a few weeks ago when I was bathing our daughter at my apartment she worked herself into a rage, and called the police 30 minutes laters. Just today she confirmed she told the police she believed I was molesting our 10 month old daughter. The weird thing is, she was in the other room the whole time. If any sane mother really thought the father was molesting their daughter wouldn’t she do anything at that moment to stop it from happening?

I’ve been pouring my heart out to her with understanding and love this entire week, only to be cut off with the insults, the silent treatment and every other tactic you’ve described in this article. I just wanted to say thank you so much for sharing this information. It’s given me some badly needed insight and a clear path to a decision I must make to protect our daughter from her abusive behavior. Weird thing is, I do still love her and wish more than anything she’d get help. But, it’s time to accept the reality that she might not ever get help, and in the mean time I need to protect both myself and our daughter. Thanks again!!!

Best regards,


Doug said,

December 17, 2014 @ 10:20 pm

I recently had a brief relationship where my emotional—ass was handed to me on a silver platter. I’m in the understanding/educating phase of my recovery. Before I can go further I needed to know what/who I leaving behind.

Thank you so much for this article.

You nailed it!


Luba said,

February 25, 2015 @ 2:45 am

Yes. An absolute stay away from these type. I am in a relationship with a mother-in-law for over 10 years now. It has been quite a journey since now I am more aware of what was happening for the most of my mature life. My poor husband, too. Often falls for her manipulations with talking bad about me and I can see how he walks around with stuff in his head and I can see in his eyes he is been again programmed.
I know it is hard to love someone that thinks crappy of you. And I am talking about my husband. But being aware of his true nature and what he really means to express, allows me now to see him for what he really is, carrying and fun person. I try to see beyond, the possibility, that he is now maybe a narcissist too; but I see how he is able to snap out of it if I show some appreciation. Maybe I am just trying to excuse myself from all the pain and exhaustion this relationship has caused; but having two toddlers and no job, and his disapproval for working, saying that “I do not want others raising my kids”, which part I understand; but I feel like I will be better off if I get out of the house and my kids can experience other kids and adults.
I learned that I must act independently in private, if I want anything to happen. And be sure of I am ready to do and show it in expressed words. If there is a slightest doubt expressed, it will be immediately noticed and the come back that will be received can discourage and ruin any good vision.
Yeah, he is a narcissist too. Finally, the enlightenment.

Erin said,

March 16, 2015 @ 1:50 pm

I found this really useful, and all I had to do was flip the gender.

Phong said,

August 4, 2015 @ 6:01 am

Thank you that is so kind of you ! The wolves here are truly under siege and unfrutonately the hate seems to be spreading across the country. More and more people are learning of their plight however and though things haven’t gotten better for the wolves yet , I truly believe that the tide is beginning to turn.

Carlos said,

September 23, 2015 @ 11:55 pm

Ken, I’m going through a very similar process after a relationship with a highly attractive, smart charming but damaged femme fatale, still hurting though, but learning to release the narcissistic traits that I’ve developed to protect my shame-based wounded self. I hope I can reach the peaceful place that you talk about.

Dr. Sam. I’m now struggling with obsessive thoughts around the relationship and isolation. I’m struggled all my live with issues around women. I’ve been told that I have exceptional qualities both physical and intellectual, people are puzzled at my lack of confidence and success, but I always feel very insecure, unworthy and defective. I was an unexpected son, traumatic premature birth. Castrating and smothering mother and absent passive father.Two older sisters and on older brother. Ive heard things like this coming from my mother and sisters mouth “Men are evil”. My parents are not evil, they are traumatized themselves. I was raised into a high controlling socially isolating paranoid sect, and I blame my mother for that. I left that the cult and my parents home and lost all my friends when I was 25.My mother did not want me to leave home and become depressed. I’m trying to have a “normal” life (after releasing my narcissist fantasies of exceptional success) but I feel like I struggle just to not get drowned in my own pain. I have ADD like symptoms, despite having a very high IQ, I’m very unsuccessful. I’ve improved a lot. But still feel very lost. I’ve been to several psychologist (female) but I mostly had to help my self. I tend to isolate and to no ask for help.

Kaarina said,

October 22, 2015 @ 10:48 am

I think it’s important to add that narcissistic women attack other women as well, not only men. The key is that they attack people they consider weak. In this instance, she bullied younger single females, particularly disabled women, who lived alone. It caused me untold damage and there were a number of complaints made about her. I eventually went no contact, but regret it took me so long to do something about it as the damage done has been tremendous. In this instance, I don’t think it was abuse by men that caused her to be like this, though I don’t know her history. I think it was just a cold upbringing generally. I think there are a number of reasons why women or men become narcissists and the reason described in this article is just one reason. I realise the key to recovery is working on one’s own boundaries though and making changes to yourself, so that you don’t attract these kinds of people anymore, nor are attracted to them. Also learning to recognise them before you give them entry into your life and they show their true colours.

Brian Yach said,

November 28, 2015 @ 2:07 am

I have a sister who fits most of these descriptions to a T. I recently decided I can’t be around her. Her lack of respect for other people’s wishes, a negative energy that drains you and makes you feel like crap when you’re around her, and much more. She loves trying to throw guilt trips at you. The deciding factor for me is, she drinks a lot and is always sipping on a glass of wine. I was convicted of a dui but for the time being, am still able to drive. When driving her to places she needed to go because she didn’t have a vehicle, she would sneak open alcohol containers into my vehicle. I noticed when she would take a drink. It was then that I decided that she was detrimental to my physical, mental, and spiritual well being. She doesn’t think she needs help, knows she is always right and oh yes, she is smarter than everyone else. I’m not sure I know what else to do but stay the heck away from her. She has lost most of her other female friends as well. Nobody wants to be around her.

Jaisce said,

December 29, 2015 @ 5:24 am

So…a bitter and abusive woman is considered a she wolf? What is it with this world and humans considering wolves to be evil or bad? There are fsr greater traits associated to wolves should you actually understand them. Loyalty. Determination. Commitment. Family oriented. They are tough, and only sunmit to their chosen mates…and even then they often go back and forth. But this, strange fascination with depicting wolves as bad, short tempered and abusive…is retarded..and yes, i am using the actual definition. “Held back or slow minded”. Women like this should be called as they are. Women. Human, women. I am sure i will catch a tonne of flak from this. But i care not. It will just make me face the same ignorant issues my chosen, favored animal does. The very same ignorant thinking that constantly keeps these majestic creatures on the endangered list. So they kill off livestock and stuff…you seem to forget. They were there first and are merely trying to survive in a world that used to be so vast and large to them. But is now diminishing due to humab expansion. They are cornered; that is why they lash out. And besides. Who needs to hunt deer and other game…when humans so perfectly store their livestock? Makes it easier to kill. Easier to feed the family. But. Whatever. Go on reflecting humanity’s vile, evil nature on innocent animals that are covenient scape goats. It’s the human way. What is even more sad…is once upon a time our ancestors, both wolf and man, coexisted happily and created strong bonds. How far we have come. How easily we forget our origins, our friends. In all honesty, i will trust a wolf over a human any day. And don’t try and say im stupid, the wolf will kill me. Though that may be true…so would a human. At least with a wolf, i merely need not interfere with its survival. The very thing that drives wolves. As opposed to a human where greed, corruption, hate, bribery, and jealousy are often what is the motivation. Call these vile women what they are. Human.

Dr.Sam said,

December 29, 2015 @ 9:59 am

Okay, I get it. You idolize the actual animal… the Wolf! Maybe I should have chosen a tree, but then that would not communicate the predator traits I was trying to analogously point out. All I can say is that you missed the points of the article and got stuck on “I love my beautiful wolves” part. Your love for wolves sounds scary. Why? because you seem to love them more than humans and you almost deify them. I gather that there is no reasoning with your position. It is a closed and shut thing. I wish you and your wolves the best. Dr. Sam

George Speake said,

January 28, 2016 @ 3:10 pm

Dr. Sam,

I really want to thank you for this article on “She Wolves”.

I had an intense, if not brief romantic interest/exposure to just such a woman-some seven years ago. And your article has been most helpful in illustrating some of her more perplexing and disturbing characteristics. (she was quite a siren as well as a femme fatale by the way). It took me over three years to “let go” of my emotional entanglement with this woman….

I have watched all of your YouTube Videos on Narcissism and personality disorder related topics–which have been more than helpful in understanding unusual types of people.


Aisha said,

February 23, 2016 @ 3:09 pm

Sounds like I am one of those she-wolves, narcissist too the fragile type. And that’s enough to feel hopeless……

Chris said,

July 2, 2017 @ 7:58 am

I think I am messed up from this. 2 or more yesrs. Stripped of who I was and who I am now. I have been on a course for a year trying to fix my mind and myself.what a ride this has been.I have a daughter with this crazy person. I am worried about her and myself. I work everyday trying to find my self again. I coach my little girl on some thoughts of the now. Shes catching on, I hope.

T. Huisman said,

October 14, 2017 @ 2:00 am

I am stripped and financial ruined and bankrupted and I am living on the bottom of society unemployed and robbed from possessions, a clairvoyant person said that I that my personality was hijacked in that was in their own favor to get better from it.

Cat Spydell said,

April 15, 2018 @ 2:58 pm

You obviously know less about wolves than you do about women. Women who call themselves ’she-wolves’ are: Loyal, would go to bat for their significant other in an instant, wish to be paired for life, believe that they and their mate are a team, and find the bond between them loving, and the she-wolf defers to the alpha male (for ONLY alpha male wolves get to mate with a female alpha wolf, did you even know that?)

What you are describing in your diatribe is more of a parasitic relationship that only the most insecure woman would find herself in.

That scenario is not the wolf way at all. Did you know that the female wolf pretends to be coy and playful when a male wolf tries to attack her mate? That is what it looks like on the surface, but in actuality she is putting her face in front of her male mate’s throat to protect him.

I would highly suggest studying thoroughly the subject you are a writing about…i.e., WOLVES…before stumbling around stating a bunch of nonsensical rubbish as to how the human version of a female wolf would act. You have a great deal to learn about both the human and animal kingdom.

Regardless of sex, each individual is responsible for their own actions, and to blame another person for one’s downfalls is the weakest way of playing the victim.

Dr.Sam said,

June 29, 2018 @ 2:17 pm

Sorry Cat, but I feel that you totally missed my point. I wrote my article based on a series of very hard women I have come across in my life. Most, if not all, were not insecure, at least on the outside. That’s what made them pretty brutal in how they have treated men. I would suggest you approach people more gently instead of coming out of the gates attacking me. I can take it but it does not make friends and it puts people immediately on the defensive. I take the attitude that I don’t know everything. If I did, then my name would be “God.” I suggest you approach folks giving them some benefit of doubt and you’ll find your criticism would be received well. I wish you the best in life. Dr. Sam

Tio said,

August 7, 2018 @ 9:34 pm

Trust your self. Selftrust. The narcissist got esthablishment behind him while their thingkingprocess is nog logical. It is an unconsious process when you attract narcissists. You get used to it and have still hope and dreams that it would get better but that is an lllusion with a narcissist. All things can happen in deepest secrecy with a narcissist and everything they do is hidden. The first impression is the best. Never thought it could be so dangerous and evil.You can loose everything and it is all about them. Thay forget their commitment and what they did and it is logical that you defend your self and your rights after they have done wrong. Thay never listen waht you say and if you want that they listen what you say they call you egocentric and that is the opposite of what you are but is is about them. Turn the table to you and use everything against you to get and feel better and it is for their own need and purpose for the moment. Forget important details waht they said and did and they don’t want to know you as a person and you feel betrayed.

Tio said,

August 7, 2018 @ 9:44 pm

Feel comfortable with your self but that is an unconcious process and i can believe that if you unknown in this field of narcissism and not knowing what to do you can feel isolated and disconnected with the environment and don”t no who to trust and who not and maybe after that relationship you attract one again because selftrust. You have to know for sure where you are dealing with. Some people warned me for that person I turned to that it was a rascal a scoundrel and was even life threatened and ethical and technical unresponsible. Was not in a legal mandatory with rules and authority above them. They want not held accountable for it. And it is if they are stay above every rule in society and trample other rights while they want a appropiate treatment whil they give other not that treatment as they will. And that is unjustified.

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