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May 19, 2005

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Comments

Joel

HaHaHa ! Brilliant !!!

Pinato

Has anyone else noticed that these same traits that you describe and that are described in the articles might well also describe many a powerful businessman?!? (think Enron amoungst many others)

dont trust you

it sounds like your aware of your problems and you live in temptation
a charecteristic of sociopath if i remember correctly

Grunt Feebly

We get the behavior we reward. If we reward this behavior at the highest levels, why should anyone at a lower level NOT emulate it?

David Jordan

Why are work place sociopaths not screened out of employment and incarcerated somewhere instead. Why do decent employees have to suffer these horrible wharped freaks when they damage peoples health, jobs and careers?

Janie

do sociopaths stick together? Do they ever recognize each other and bond? I do know that they will eventually turn on each other... they have to.. but I had a job where I swear my boss & co-worker were both sabotaging me for no reason except for sport..

Sam

You know what makes for the ultimate sociopath...add an IQ of 180 something and born with a silver spoon in his mouth, and he is an aggressive one to boot. Thinks he is above the law because he basically is, every police call he been intercepted and the reports had been completely manipulated, he smells of roses each time. How can you get others to see him for what he is and believe the utter chaos in your life.

Joan Luyties

I don't know what a URL is, but I'll comment anyway: Sandra Bridewell lived 3 blocks from me when I lived in Ross, CA. I saw her at the Post Office and thought she was a striking woman--more Texas Beauty Queen than Marin County Class. One month later I was shocked to see her on the front page of the SF Chronicle's People section. She left town months after that-- in a U-Hall, no less--and no, her furniture was not the "priceless antiques" The Chron described. Marin folks who knew her couldn't believe the incriminating gossip swirling about. She was "too sweet and gentle", even though she'd made a determined play for another woman's rich husband (and failed to capture his attention, thank God). I glimpsed her years later in St. Helena, looking a bit worn and tacky--- Tough beans Toots!

Adam

I guess what I think is amazing is how sociopaths can bash their way through their social lives... and then display such an exquisite performance of indignation and injury when someone finally bashes back. Sociopaths are truly subhuman. What they probably don't realize is that while the rest of us are limited by our emotions, we are capable of levels of hatred that they'll never quite fathom. Since it simply *can't* be their fault, they are truly the tragic victims when this hatred gets unleashed on them. (Whatever. motherfuckers.)

starfish

i agree with David...a sociopath at work has caused me half a year of some of the worst physical pain of my life, due to a 'trick' he pulled, and though i have informed my superiors, nothing is being done though he threateded me verbally afterwards...and he teaches psychology at that!! and to think i considered him a close friend and even had a crush on him due to his charm! his students make him life-sized cards, but he devastates people's lives. also, watch out for activist types, especially environmental activists( like him)..there is something missing!
i'd like to blame myself for not seeing the signs, but i guess a sociopath is good at showing fake care.

Sabrina Singularity

The view from the OTHER SIDE of this issue: I was diagnosed with ASPD in 1992, by a psychologist who gave me a "very poor" prognosis, automatically, due to the diagnosis. It took me over a decade to find a therapist who would actually treat me! Most took one look at my records and dumped me on the spot, because of the stigma attached to such a definition. "Doesn't ASK for help"???? HAH!!! How would they KNOW??? I was asking for help, for certain, but no one was listening. One of them actually said "You don't need a therapist, you need an EXORCIST!" Another threatened to call the cops, and I hadn't done anything! Still another called me "scary and dangerous" and instructed security to bar me from re-entering the building. Later she told a social worker that my EYES had scared her "half to death". Right, like I was giving her the "evil eye" or something. Give me a break. So much of it is just because of words: a label. I had a brief inpatient visit this Spring, partly because of this very same issue. I started shouting sarcastically in the middle of a psych-eval interview, "So, you all agree?!! Oh, WOW, watch OUT!!! I'm a PSYCHOPATH!!! I'm going to destroy the WHOLE WORLD!!!" at the top of my lungs. Not the best idea. I didn't exactly get my true point across. And I discovered that some shrinks just don't have a sense of irony at all; so, of course, I ended up getting committed. And during my stay, another patient, obviously of superior CONSCIENCE, tried to beat me with her Bible, to "get the devil out" of me! The nurses automatically accused me of lying about everything, no matter what the issue, and they kept yelling at me because they were constantly suspicious that I was "up to something". And of course, they just HAD to put me in a room alone; fine by me, if somewhat insulting. Did they think I was going to EAT a roommate?? Or maybe just LOOK at them -- because I started getting that business again from some of the patients and even staff, about giving them the so-called "evil eye" -- whatever. What do they see in my eyes??!! It's too much. Just everything. I'm sick of being treated like a female version of "Jason" or "Freddie"! People look at my psych records and get all these weird ideas, and they expect a cinematic show. Oh, and if I cry or show the slightest bit of pain, no way does anyone believe it's real; I'm automatically attacked for trying to put one over on someone with my "dramatic performance". So. I'm giving psychotherapy one last shot, with a therapist who can look me in the eye without suddenly turning into a panicky wreck. I guess that makes her special. That and the fact she sees me as just another human being, not a freak or "monster" or vessel of "pure evil," as I've been called. But now I finally believe that I'm not "sub-human". I've had extensive neurological testing, and I've been told by several specialists that parts of my nervous system are messed up. I sustained substantial trauma to the head as a child. I've been through CT scans, MRIs, and two complete courses of those strobe-light EEG tests, plus the regular neurological exams. The "aura" that comes before a convulsive seizure is one of the scariest things I've endured, and just before blacking out, the weird feeling of having a plastic paddle shoved into my mouth by a nurse, to keep me from swallowing my tongue. Meanwhile, as I'm struggling through all that, plus (and especially) the emotional and cognitive aspects of my illness, it seems to me that the rest of the world is having a party to which I am always uninvited. I feel that way because they share things I will never know. Ever, as long as I live, no matter how much progress I do manage to make. Accepting that is very hard. Up until very recently, my hatred for the world was formidable. This competent and no-nonsense therapist is actually helping me with that. It's amazing that she, or anyone at all, is able to help me. BUT one thing is vital to remember: IT WAS NEVER MY CHOICE to be as I am. People need to be aware that mental illness is first and foremost a PHYSICAL thing. No one CHOOSES to develop any form of it. The human brain is still a largely unfathomed territory. Less blame and judgment, more science and intervention, would go a long way toward preventing or at least much better management of disastrous illnesses such as mine. Hollywood shouldn't dictate all that people know about such things. Well, anyway. I just thought it was a good idea to offer another person's point of view. And, YES, I am a person, not an "it". Despite numerous protests to the contrary. So many people have called me "evil" -- if I believed it all, I'd end up committing suicide. Although the damage that was done to me so long ago, and what I was born with, cannot ever change, a lot can. I have already changed enough to be able to do something like writing here! Oh; by the way, I want to mention that the notorious "fake" tears aren't precisely so: how that works is that one weeps about one thing, but claims it's about another. It's what you learn to do when no one around you wants to know what's really going on. Now all I want is to move as far beyond my staggering limitations as I possibly can do. I want a life. I live in self-imposed exile, isolated and reclusive. And yet, when someone tells me I'm "hopeless," it only makes me more adamant about breaking free of the mental cage in which I've spent my whole life -- so far. Statistically speaking, my expected lifespan might fall twenty years short of the general average. But I intend to defy that, too. I'm in great pain now, psychologically, because I'm facing things that are quite horrifying to remember, and it is necessary. But in spite of that, I am starting to conceive of having something worth living for...and THAT is brand new for me. One thing I never forget: "When you're going through hell, KEEP GOING!"

Melissa Epiphany

Sabrina I commend you on your efforts to confront your sociopathic behaviour. I've had a time in my youth where I had drug-induced schizophrenia and truly appreciate just how damn hard it is to recover from any form of mental illness. What you're doing takes immense courage and don't stop! Because there are other people out there like you who will take encouragment from what you're doing to help themselves and see a light at the end of their own tunnel because of it.

I have a friend who I am convinced is sociopathic. I've known her for nine years - on and off - and always just thought she was rather 'messed up.' But lately I've begun to realise that she's way more than that. I can literally smell the danger that emminates from her. She'll be talking to me, telling me all sorts of lies, and it's like she's just blank inside behind those eyes there. Cold and well I know you don't like it but she does look 'evil' in there. I can't help thinking that when I look at her face blatantly lying and manipulating me without even a blink. She's never ever happy, she goes through man after man after man and none of them ever last, she has every excuse under the sun why she's a 'victim' yet she totally and utterly sponges off all and sundry by using other people's propensity for pity and empathy to her advantage. There are times she crosses the line with me. When she does, my soft nature falls to the side and after trying to appeal to her gently not to do a certain thing, this or that, that might hurt me, i always have to just come out and blast her. This works. A normal person would not hang out with me anymore after those events, but for some weird reason she submits to me in those times and does not want to lose my 'friendship.'

She is highly intelligent and has some delusion that she's better than the rest of humanity, her and her son that is, whos she lives vicarously through and is slowly ruining. She thinks she has the wool pulled over my eyes, or maybe she knows she doesn't really but just doesn't care - I'm not sure. But I can see through all her tricks and maybe that's why I've allowed her in my life for so long, because I make sure I have always had very strong boundaries around myself that she knows it is not permittable to cross. Though she often tries. But I am well aware that this girl is capable of my down fall. She flirts outrageously with my partner but I am lucky enough to have a partner who is very much in love with me and who finds her rather repulsive really. Her coldness, her rashness and abrasiveness are not attractive traits. I notice men either go mad for her (classic femme fatale,) or totally hate her within minutes or hours. My partner is the latter thank god. I have never given her money or fallen into the trap of helping her when she needs help because I know it will become a never-ending-pit situation. Instead I just be there.

The thing is, i've asked myself over and over why she actively pursues my frienship, even when I don't pursue hers. My IQ is as high as hers and I have succeeded quite well in my chosen profession to date, and I think she gets some strange and perverse feeling that by surrounding herself with accomplished or intelligent people, it's a reflection on her own brilliance. I think that's what she really wants from me, to say she knows me simply so that other people will think she must be someone special to have such smart friends blah blah blah. I think also, that she cannot figure out why I am so content with my life. I'm not famous, I don't go out with a famous boyfriend, (and she's just mad for some sort of love through acknowledgement like fame, I can see her driving her son to high levels of achievement that are too much for him, so that she herself can be recognised through his achievements.) I'm just a homebody essentially. I know that sounds weird that she sees me as both important and a nobody but somehow she does. She depreciates me and tries to make me dislike myself, i can see that she thinks I am on one hand, someone worth knowing to brag about, yet on the other - a total no one, no where near as brilliant/sexy/exciting as she herself is. And it drives her mad too i think,that i never admit she is more these things than i am. I am happy being just me and i refuse to allow her to bring my self worth down just because hers is so low.

She will never get better. She will never admit there is something wrong with her. It's everyone else there's something wrong with. Even when she asks me straight out if I think she's insensitive or uninsightful, I lie to her because I know if i tell her the truth, it'll just end in hours and hours of debate until i finally crumble anyway and tell her what she wants to hear, that she's sane and right.

I have a family and children to think about and protect. I have thought recently of cutting her out of my life. she is fun to be with but only for short periods of time. She feigns that she cares about me but i know she doesn't really. Well, i think somewhere inside herself she really does, but she can't get to that place, it's all blocked up with her her her instead. After being with her for longer than a few hours, to be honest, you feel dirty, like unclean, she spreads something to me and I don't quite know what it is but it's not nice. This is why I can only be with her for short periods of time.

But a part of me feels genuinely sad for her and does care for her and grieves that she was marked out with this horrible illness. I would give anything to see her healed of it so she could experience a little of the happiness i know she longs for yet can't find. The tragedy of never being able to be truly happy, of having such a horror of an illness to bear throughout her lifetime, makes me have some empathy towards her.

I am thinking of keeping the friendship open, but at the same time protecting myself by not seeing very much of her for my family and my own sake. And to keep strict and stringent boundaries up. I know she's not physcially dangerous to me, she's just cunning and ruthless and my friendship is just a steping stone to other things - i am aware of all this. She can hurt me and I do not want to be hurt. But I have known her for nine years now and somehow I've managed to do and say all the right things to manage a relationship with her without getting myself burnt. I do care for this lady.

I want to know from you sociopaths out there, if it is worth my while to hang in there with her or is it just better to let her go? She has hardly any friends although she appears to have lots.
I know I cannot change her but I guess I hope in some small way, the fact that somewhere a friend stuck by her despite her inability to stick by that friend, would be some small comfort, or help. We all only have one life and how sad for her that hers is this. Does it make any difference to you when people stick my you if you are a sociopath or is it true that us normal people are so interchangable that she will hardly flinch if I move on?

mel

mis

Is it common for Sociopaths to be aware of their condition? Or do most of them not understand why they don't fit in with society? Also if they are incapable of love how would you explain their feelings to those they pretend to care about? I ask this because I'm pretty sure I was in a relationship for several months with a Sociopath, He told me he loved me all the time, but behind my back told his buddies that he didn't. And I just want to know what I meant to him.

mhieshapula

that's great..

Shannon Quinn

Oh my God. Melissa... Thank you. This is exactly what I am struggling with so very very badly with the Father of my children. And what is worse then that is that I have children with him. He is taking me to family court (probably right to trial) like sociopaths tend to do. I try to fight him the best ways I know how so he does not turn my beautiful girls into a mini-him-sociopath? Please any lawyer out there that will do a pro-bono case for me? I am on maternity leave. I was denied legal aid cause I make a little too much? I feel like I am loosing my mind and that's what he wants. His Father is also a sociopath and dangerous, and he lives with him. I am so afraid for my children! I love him at the same time??? What is happening? How can I prove to thecourts that he is such a dangerous person as a DAd? The child reform acts need to be changed drastically and how can I change them before January of 2008 when our court is? Please I need a saviour that is also a hard ass lawyer.. I am so scared, so hurt, so confused.. Please someone anyone, help me in any way to protect my little girls all 3. My counselor told me years ago to run, how can I now when it's in the courts hands and he is such a great actor? His Mother took off on him and his siblings to get away from "the Monster " she calls his Dad. I won't run without my children, I love them so much!! I can't give in for them. Help!!!!

Hannah

So, another aspect of this whole thing- how does an average person, without any sort of psychiatric degree etc., draw a line between someone who is just an asshole and an actual sociopath? It's a bit hasty to label anyone capable of hurting someone seemingly without feeling bad about it, and there are people who are just not very nice regardless of any condition. It's not as though every person one meets who is fake, acts the part of society, or schemes and manipulates is an actual sociopath. And to me, just straight-up being a jerk, (hurtful to women and children, etc.) seems more likely to be traits passed down through behavior and parenting than an actual condition. But I have a question - if a sociopath raises a child to have similar qualities, does that actually make the child a sociopath?

Some dude

Melissa, you are a sociopath, and so is your friend, well, I assume your friend is, but i can id you by your sentence structure alone. What's wrong with having a fellow socio for a pal? They ususally make the best of friends, when one feels the need to whine or blame other people that you both know. I'll bet that sounds familiar, doesn't it?

The only downside is when two socio's have a falling out, i.e., they're both trying to control at the same time, in my experience it's usually permanent.

One thing to Sabrina, it's the first time I've put it together, but I truly understand the whole, " the notorious "fake" tears aren't precisely so: how that works is that one weeps about one thing, but claims it's about another" thing. It's strange that we won't admit why we're really upset, huh? For me I think it's an ego thing. Why project weekness when you can project a feeling of "personal abuse" done unto you from your present audience, or perhaps seek a little pity with a scenario that you think they will identify with?

Not all ASPD's are evil. I've recently been diagnosed, so I've been doing a lot of reading. As for myself, I'm definatly manipulative, and highly aware of the logistics involved with any social situation, but I don't steal anything, I don't harm animals, I don't dream of killing my enemies, and I don't eat people. I admit that it's probably just because I don't want to, lol. That was a joke.

I just truly don't understand why regular people do a lot of the things they do. For example, visiting granparents, doing volunteer work, going to church, hugging someone when there brother died.....these acts of empathy are completly alien to me. Expecting me to do these things because they are normal, is proportionally akin to me expecting you to keep your dying grandmother's condition to yourself, because it dampens the mood, and it's an awkard social situation for me. Before I knew that there was a name for what I am, I had lots of my own terms for the quirks that I held dear. One example was telling people, "why don't you start worrying about shit that matters for a change" when someone is trying to talk you into a different coarse of action. When referring to the way I do business, I always called it "speaking in plain english". I now know what I was really doing when I said that, I was saying, "you people shut up for a minute and let change your minds."

The bottom line is I just want more things, they fill up the hole, for a little while. Sex is always worthwhile, but only for a little while. My status is always better than last year, but not as good as it needs to be next year

During their teens and 20's, socio's are simply screaming about everything because they have been trying all week to parrot your happy life, and when friday shows up, they are still nonplussed as to why you are happy for the weekend, and they aren't. for me it's that simple. After 30 I mellowed out, and started trying to use my quirks for advantage instead of drama. The people that know me call it "good business". If someone is upset with you, calm them down, and convince them that everything is going to plan. If they just follow your lead, well....everything's fine. Most people need direction. They need you to be confident in order for them to feel at ease. That may bruise normal peoples ego's to say that, but deep down you know it's the reality of the world.

Of coarse I couldn't say these things to the people i know...to let them know how i think would only make them uneasy, and me poorer. I am vastly oversimplifying the entire issue, but there are two sides to every story. Like melissa said, ASPD's don't choose this life, and for 30 years i felt so sorry for myself because i didn't fit in without putting 16 hours of effort into it everyday. It's hard to be personal when you have little or no personality. Some of you say, "they learn to tell you what you want to hear". What you don't realise, is that we HAVE to learn it, it does not come naturally. it is work for us to share the same space with average people and keep our dimeanor pleasant and honest, and i realise also that some socio's don't bother with pleasantries. The crazy ones just don't think long term, well, the obviously crazy ones.

I garantee that each and every one of you know dozens of sociopaths, you work for them, you pay them your tax dollars, you listen when they speak, and you blush when they praise you.

They're just not the crazy ones.

i appologize for spelling errors, we tend to type and speak just as fast as we think, lol.

tippy

How can you tell a person is a sociopath from their sentence structure? anyways..my husband and i had a stalker for 6 years and she displayed many of these same characteristics..if not all. Loved this though.. thanks.

Jessica

Well this is all very interesting to me. I'm hoping I can get some suggestions on here. I have been involved with a man for almost 6 years now that I am starting to believe fits the profile of a sociopath, only from my own research. When we met I had just turned 18, he was 38. Charming, smart, handsome, awesome lover , genuinely nice caring guy, showed me more "love" than i'd seen before. He owns his own business- a construction company. Has 7 kids total (2 mine) 4 sons from a first marriage and a daughter who I have raised with him from the age of 2 after a 4 yr major court battle with maternal mother. (utimately DCF stepped in and awarded him full custody and removed parental rights from mother (borderline szizophrenic, bipolar,suicidal ect)Our relationship has been plagues with non stop cheating/womanizing/lying etc. He sees himself as better than most people, blames all his shortcomings on a terrible childhood (mother beat him and sexual abuse)Extremely intelligent, can talk fast and manipulate any outcome he wishes with anyone, from women hes pursuing romantically to political figures with contract signing abilities. He is an EXPERT at getting anything he wants, however following through on his end of the deal usually doesnt happen resulting in law suits and major debts incurred. He shows love constantly to his children and me, he swears he would do anything for us, has always taken care of his kids and their mothers financially and emotionally. That is to say he doesnt abandon them or be a non existent father. His children all love and adore him. I see their relationship as a mostly healthy one. He pushes them hard to achieve (the boys are older) and doesnt accept failure or laziness from them. He is actively involved in all of their lives. He uses the fact that he is Puerto Rican to convince me that it is in his culture to be a womanizer. I am very weak to him. I have WANTED to get out of this relationship for about a year now but I got pregnant again and decided to stay and try to work things out - for the kids- and I do honestly love him. He proposed to me in Dec of 06 and I accepted and I had been planning a June wedding. BUT i recently got into a fight with my sister in which she told me that about 2 years ago when she drove my bf somewhere where they had to stay in a hotel together , he made a move on her. So now I am SURE I want out. He sees nothing as a "sacred line", he admitted what happened and that it was wrong but says it was so long ago and hes changed and she caused it by asking him questions about sex blah blah blah, while meanwhile all last year he has been up to the same womanizing nonsense. I know I deserve better, I know I will not settle for this. BUT he is so difficult to get away from, I dont know what to do. He keeps trying to convince me to stay and move away into the country with him and the kids so we wont be bothered by any of these type problems. A part of me wants to , we have a great "family" we eat together everyday our kids have very functional lives, they adore us and vice versa, we pray every night at dinner, take family vacations etc. So it is not like he is this terrible person all the time. Basically my problem with him is He hurts me constantly by pursueing other women (though he denies everything unless he is cold busted) He lies all the time, all of our Ideas to make money and service huge contracts he gets are all ruined by his impulsitivity and failure to follow through on commitmetns AFTER deals are made. We have a house full of beautiful gorgeous furniture (30k+), beautiful kids, but I dont have a car and havnt for years, we are in so much debt, the business is going bankrupt, and last year we Grossed over 2 million dollars in sales. He throws these Huge lavish christmas's for the kids always trying to top the year before from 10k to 20k, to 30k. Then we spend the first quarter of the year broke as can be because of the misuse of funds at christmas, as a result losing contracts because of inability to perform because no money is avail. I have told him so many times, what hes doing wrong and how to avoid making these huge mistakes, he agrees with me, tells me I am in control of finances from now on and then does what he wants anyways. Im sorry so long, any advice would be helpful.

Also for the record he is a TERRIBLE SPELLER and suffers from ADHD

me

I've got something to say, and I hope that you who know "sociopaths" pay attention because it is VERY important: what we commonly call sociopathy is nothing more than the light shining on the truth of who people really are after a heartbreak,in deep isolation. If you've ever heard the expression "dead inside", know that you might not usually hear it from the people who truly are so. It might be the opposite of what is usually said about them actually. You might be too afraid to admit this:

Their feelings run too deep for them to handle, so they are such good actors that they act like they don't have any, that way don't show their vulnerabilities.

These people are not really running their own lives, they are leaving their lives up to "forces", to "intutition", or physical/mental processes, whatever takes the easiest amount of thinking/empathizing/feeling. Of course the most basic physical processes are only there for "I", for our own personal survival and our own personal life's needs. And even those who would say of themselves that they are "sane" because they "empathize", and "sacrifice", and etc...hahaha, it's all a highly sophisticated way to a selfish end, but oh boy like they would admit to that.
So what can we expect out of a "sociopath"? come on...they/we are still individuals, they/we are still people, and they still deserve respect, (just as a pointer, you might want to give them/us a little more of that than usual, because they have had such a lack of it being given)
Above all, if you've ever known a heartbreak(not necessarily the romantic kind), how deep was it? How did you get out of it? Did you have friends there for you? Did you have fun, interesting stuff to do to entertain your mind?If you did, that's great...(really, that's great...maybe more so than you appreciate)Just know, that some people didn't have that, and they ended up getting lost in the tunnel instead of finding the light at the other end. This can happen at any disappointment from birth onward.
Yes, sometimes you may feel that you are only getting dragged down with them, but ultimately that is a matter of how much you care for this person, because they are soooo in need of companionship and understanding. They don't need it shown through fake words, through a therapist who couldn't give a f**k, through presents or through any other unnatural method. They need honest and true companionship, in whichever way they may need it, show or not show this need, it is EVERYONE'S deepest need.
I know we are mostly so engrained in thinking "I've got my own life to live, other things to be doing, blahblah..." but if you ever feel that door open, and you truly feel you don't care what this person does to you because all you truly want is their comfort, you are in the most wonderful situation and don't let anyone ruin it for you by telling you it's wrong.

Again, I repeat, they only want HONESTY, if you don't want to be their victim, then by all means get away from them.

ZAF

http://soiciopath.blogspot.com/

mike

because it is VERY important: what we commonly call sociopathy is NOTHING MORE than the light shining on the truth of who people really are after a heartbreak,in deep isolation. If you've ever heard the expression "dead inside", know that you might not usually hear it from the people who truly are so. It might be the opposite of what is usually said about them actually. You might be too afraid to admit this:
What a crock, Sorry no sympathy here
Sure were in deep pain, so lets project every one of our insecurities on those who were manipulated with a sociopaths fake I'm a good guy/girl mask.
One things for sure, truth always comes to surface, so Poor sociopath can't keep his charade going forever.

Just sit this life out, you'll get another one...really, maybe join a tibetan monk refuge or Something.

again it's hard to feel pity for those who use goodness and trust, to manipulate people.

Serena

I have a sociopath in my family. It took me a long time to realize it. She's beautiful and intelligent. She's married with children and seems to live a normal life. I've spent years trying to understand her and I have spent years feeling confused and hurt and angry by the things she says and does. The relationship has been painful for me. But I have finally learned a great thing from her - when I consistenly feel confused, misunderstood and hurt around someone - it's a very good reason to not hang around them.

lookingatthesun

I've often suspected I have sociopathic tendencies but I don't fit all the criteria on your list.

I've lied and stolen from a very young age despite being brought up in a normal, loving, two-parent home. I had never been particularly loving until I learned consciously what the display of this behavior could do for me. In arguments with my sibling I was always labeled cold and unfeeling because I would turn off the outward expression of emotion to the point that I'm not sure I felt anything at all.

Despite this, I have forged some stable long-term relationships, married, and now have a daughter. I have learned to blend in with the status quo so much that I highly doubt if anyone suspects my inward nature. Once I learned consequence I stopped stealing and now only lie when it benefits me in some tangible manner and the risk of being outed is low. Despite this outward appearance of normalcy, I lack any sort of depth or substance. Emotions are often faked, and I have to work at performing regular friendship and relationship maintenance to keep these relationships going when there is no emotion behind the act whatsoever-(for instance, buying and providing a nice birthday card and gift for a long time friend with loving sentiments).

I struggle often with behaving appropriately and in a manner acceptable to society. I am still tempted to steal and have to slowly walk myself through the consequences of doing so. I don't avoid stealing by arguing the morality of it, but rather what would happen to me if I was caught. In my teen years I was promiscuous and to this day still struggle with my urges, though I have never cheated on my husband for fear of being caught. Sex and lust for me is more of a function of manipulation that it is a physical urge, though I can and have enjoyed sex.

I often fantasize about soulful, deep, searing love relationships but don't think I could ever truly experience this. I've used my looks and sexuality in the past to draw men in and after they fell I was through. I finally married after pressure from family, and conceived after 10 years due to pressure from my husband. I love my husband to the extent of what he can provide for me, financially and sexually, but I don't know what it means to have an aching heart for anybody real.

Nearly everything I do, even today, is calculated for personal gain. I am constantly weighing energy output VS gain VS acceptable behavior.

The only unfettered love I've experienced so far is for my daughter. She is the only one who I have *ever* given more to that I expected to receive in return, without calculating what my contribution will get for me.

I wish I wasn't like this, that I could feel a normal depth and range of emotion and not constantly be tempted by my urges. I really don't think anybody could help me, I think that my constant self-checking and chameleon lifestyle is really the best I can ever expect, I don't think a head shrink could provide me with any better "therapy". I some ways I think my disorder is a gift, because I am a consummate logician, being unfettered by normal depth of emotion.

I think there are probably many *many* people out there just like me, who live in a cloak of normalcy. I could be your neighbor, or even your wife. I firmly believe I was born this way and it is just how I am wired. I don't expect anyone to feel sorry for me but I wanted to give my own perspective on my APD.

I think I am more normal that anyone would care to admit, even to themselves.

ThisIsNotMyName

Human beings are born ignorant. We believe that we are special, yet ultimately we each must die and suffer the same ignoble end. After many years and much soul searching I began to wake up to this and begin to understand why I was so unhappy. Religion is a specialized madness. Morality is adherence to said madness. When you stop to ponder it, and I mean deeply ponder it you will begin to understand what I mean. Study the work of Frank Herbert for the answers you seek. Every one who has posted here is NORMAL.
If we are all special how can the group exist, are we not in competition? Is the caste system wrong if it gives us purpose among the masses, or must me refute our place and strive for the purpose within? How can one fight the system and operate within it unless he/she us/we accept that our divinity/damnation is a personal choice. Why am I cursed with intelligence if I must acquiesce to my masters?

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