What's your opinion on sociopaths? | INFJ Forum

What's your opinion on sociopaths?

Discussion in 'Psychology and MBTI' started by LucyJr, Dec 18, 2013.

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  1. LucyJr

    LucyJr Well-known member

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    Do you think they really exist, after all, at least in the form they are described?
    I've meet many people who fit the sociopath description, but I seriously doubt the description is true!

    I mean, do they really lack conscience, and empathy, ? The ability ? It doesn't mean that if they don't empathise, they lack the ability to empathise. What do you think? It's interesting they feel emotions when their ass is in danger .

    And, why are people so intimidated by them? I find them like big children, dangerous indeed, but really stupid. Yes, they are described as smart, but they are not actually smart, they just give the impression they are smart.


    It has been said that many of them are born like that...do you think is true? And if it's true, how can anyone impose any moral boundaries against them, in case they commit a murder or something like that, illegal? It wouldn't be ethic, right? It's not their fault, they were born like that!

    Does anybody think they can be cured? I know doctors say no, but lets just leave their opinion for a while. If they can be cured, what would be the cure, the nature of that cure?


    Anyone know any girls/women sociopaths? I know two, and one of them I know pretty well, the other one just formal. Would you care to elaborate on how they are?

    Edit:
    Also, what do you think about the fact that they are more rare in Asian countries and in Eastern European countries? Does this tell somethink?
     
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  2. Radiantshadow

    Radiantshadow Urban shaman

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    "Sociopath" is usually a general term for people with antisocial personality disorder. They exist, the condition is innate, they're often highly intelligent, charming, and manipulative, and they can be incredibly dangerous. Their emotional circuitry is largely unformed and they often bear no sense of morality whatsoever. Treatment is generally ineffective because people with the disorder see no need to take their medication and tend to manipulate their way through psychotherapy without actually benefiting from it.

    If you want to know why ASPD is feared, research famous ASPD case files. Ted Bundy and Dean Corll come to mind off the top of my head.

     
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    #2 Radiantshadow, Dec 18, 2013
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  3. muir

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    Yes absolutely and there are many criminal psychologists who will testify to their existence

    I think there is a sliding scale though. So there are full blown psycopaths who are extremely dangerous; many people have skeletons in their cupboards but with a fullblown psychopath the skeleton will be real

    They might be on the scale.....so they might be showing some traits but not fullblown



    YES!

    They do not care about anyone but themselves

    Because they are incredibly dangerous and manipulative

    They are a breed apart....if you want to survive as a sub species within a species and not be jailed or end up dead then you need to be smart. Those that aren't smart enough end up in jail or dead

    Society needs to be protected from them

    It has been found that therapy only helps them to learn how to mimick the correct responses

    many of the highflyers in our society that we see on the TV will be psychopaths

    psycopathy has a genetic aspect

    But people can develop sociopathic traits under the right conditions. So someone who is brutalised might express sociopathic traits

    What psychopaths tend to do is surround themselves with people who exhibit sociopathic traits

    The documentary called 'The Corporation' gets an FBI criminal profiler to profile the model US corporation and he says that it is psychopathic. There is no mechanism built into corporations to take into account externalities hence why they are destroying the planet. they also provide the perfect vehicle through which psychopaths can seek power and dominate others

    There's a book about how they gravitate towards business and corporations called 'Snakes in suits'. You can find it in PDF online

    Aesop wrote a fable about psychopaths called ''the scorpion and the frog''

    A scorpion and a frog meet on the bank of a stream and the
    scorpion asks the frog to carry him across on its back. The
    frog asks, "How do I know you won't sting me?" The scorpion
    says, "Because if I do, I will die too."

    The frog is satisfied, and they set out, but in midstream,
    the scorpion stings the frog. The frog feels the onset of
    paralysis and starts to sink, knowing they both will drown,
    but has just enough time to gasp "Why?"

    Replies the scorpion: "Its my nature..."
     
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  4. OP
    LucyJr

    LucyJr Well-known member

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    If the condition is innate, and they have no sense of morality, how can anyone accuse them on anything? They are just doing what they suppose to do, isn't it?

    I know the story with the treatments and medication, but my question was, it is really effective this treatment? What if their problem is of a different nature? Or, how can medication treat a problem that in essence is of metaphysical nature, as far as ethics is concerned?

    Some things can only be understood if you meditate on them...those very things is what makes a person actually smart. Sociopaths don't this, their very "strenght" is their biggest weakness. So, they may be "highly intelligent", but that won't change the fact that they are stupid. In other words, they are clever, but they are not smart. ("a very good use of intelligece, mr. How")
     
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  5. Radiantshadow

    Radiantshadow Urban shaman

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    You have not researched any cases, have you?


    No, treatment is not generally effective because of the nature of the disorder. Also, medication is simply meant to correct errant chemical flows: it's not always useful for cognitively or mentally based issues. No, active/full-blown ASPD is not a metaphysical or philosophical problem.


    What? I don't know that I completely grasp what you're trying to say here, but knowledge and intelligence bear neither correlation nor causation.
     
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    #5 Radiantshadow, Dec 18, 2013
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  6. muir

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    Here's the documentary 'The Corporation' for anyones who's interested. i don't know at what point the FBI profiler does his segment:

    [video=youtube;s6zQO7JytzQ]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s6zQO7JytzQ[/video]

    I watched a UK film called 'Filth' recently in which the main character is incredibly manipulative and destructive to the lives of those around him. He seems to express some remorse though so is not likely a fullblown psychopath but certainly seems to be on the scale

    I have had some dealings with the occult world and within that world there are structures.

    These structures are pyramidal, coercive, hierarchical structures where people must undergo a series of 'initiations' in order to rise up the ranks of that structure

    These initiations will test the resolve of the candidate and will act as a screening process through which the heirarchy can assess the candidates suitability for that organisation

    There is another hot thread on the forum at the moment about the personality tests ('psychometric testing') which people often have to do to get a job at a corporation. The occult initiations which can be traced back to 'ancient' egypt and beyond are essentially an old form of psychometric testing which took place over a period of time

    This system can be seen in modern freemasonry where the candidate is given information which they must take away, read and learn; they must then come back and give their interpretation of it to their lodge brethren; this process will enable the brethren to assess the mindset of the candidate

    If you think about what these societies are they are a forum...a meeting place, like the one we are on at the moment. The difference is that anyone can enter this forum but only invited people may enter occult orders or people who are given references and are approved of

    The candidate must also swear terrible oaths that if they ever give any of the lodge secrets away to a non lodge member (one of the 'profane') then they must have their throat slit

    These exclusive forums act as meeting places for people who seek power and influence. If a powerful person is in a political party or a corporation whether it is a bank or a lawyers firm or industry or whatever they are visible to the public and their actions have a degree of transparency. Their allegiances are easier to track for an observor.

    However membership of an occult order means that people from different organisations will be rubbing shoulders in private and the usual boundaries do not matter anymore. This might mean that the head of a bank might be friends through the order with a police chief and with judges and with journalists and politicians. This provides a form of covert influence that is out of sight to the general public

    So i mention all this because just as psychopaths are drawn to corporations and politics because of the power and influence it will offer them they are also drawn to secret societies because of the connections and influence it can grant them

    Secret orders are as much a vehicle for psychopaths as corporations....its pretty logical when you think about it
     
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    LucyJr

    LucyJr Well-known member

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    So, are you saying that some of them are more wilde, while other more civic?

    Well, at least they care about themselfs. They are not really "careless".

    Yes, but it's not ethic to bring people in jail for killing other people, because they are born like that. It's like the colour of their hair or the colour of their skin. Would you put in jail someone who isn't blond or brunete, like Hitler tried to do? It's like you would jail a lion for killing a man. The lion doesn't murder, it's just natural.
    Why simply just kill the sociopath?, after all, he's just "broken".
     
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  8. OP
    LucyJr

    LucyJr Well-known member

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    [MENTION=4108]Radiant Shadow[/MENTION] [MENTION=1871]muir[/MENTION]
    I'm just playing devil advocate here, or something like that. Hope you guys know this:)
     
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  9. muir

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    I mean at the lower end of the scale a person might have some guilt, remorse, empathy and so on but not a healthy amount and may be a bit manipulative and at the other extreme of the scale they might have no empathy, guilt or remorse, be highly manipulative, reckless, risk taking and volatile

    There's a sliding scale but they will all be charming and civil until they are exposed

    Often they are reckless and will take many risks so they can be careless

    I never advocated killing anyone

    A lion kills because man has intruded on its territory

    A psychopath is not someone you can reason with, you can't back off like you can a lion and you can't discearn it as a seperate species at first glance

    If they are free to mingle with others they will cause damage; its better that they are housed in humane but secure conditions

    Those from poorer backgrounds are more likely to end up in jail, but those raised in a stable middle class environment might make their way into a corporation or government where their actions might affect hundreds to millions
     
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  10. OP
    LucyJr

    LucyJr Well-known member

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    No, not any specific case, like a criminal or something. I just read about it in general.

    What is "the nature of the disorder"?
    You used the word mental. Doesn't mental reffer to something beyond physics? Or you used it just in a physical sense?

    Ah, let's leave that. It was just a silly idea that I bought up.
     
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  11. Flavus Aquila

    Flavus Aquila Finding My Place in the Sun
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    I think sociopaths have their place in society. However, to be able to function in society they need extreme discipline growing up - something which Western culture is currently rejecting. Without rigorous discipline, sociopaths probably need to be isolated from the rest of the community.

    [video=youtube;g2-Re_Fl_L4]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g2-Re_Fl_L4[/video]
     
  12. charlene

    charlene never mind no matter nevermind

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    [MENTION=9401]LucyJr[/MENTION] you have a beautiful mind and i feel grateful to know you

    I have been friends with someone that was a 'sociopath', diagnosed with antisocial personality disorder. This is when i was much younger and before i had studied psychology. Apparently this person was highly dangerous, and my friends and i were specifically warned of this by his case workers.
    Although his behaviour was sometimes bizzare, i saw it as eccentric. I really liked him and enjoyed his company. We use to hang out quite a bit. My family all liked him too.
    There were plenty of people that hated him too, including many of my friends. He was different around these people.
    He did end up in prison for armed robbery. Im not sure when he got out and i havent seen him since, but i would be pleased to see him again.
    There have been several people that ive associated with over time that have had darker pasts and i suspected had this condition. They are people, and looking at them in the eyes, dropping judgements and communicating with them is more telling than stereotyping and judging based on past.

    When i studied psychology i came to a similar conclusion as you- if this condition had a strong biological basis, then how could we possibly condem them?
    However, my opinions are not based on a psychological perspective- i stopped doing psychology because i did not believe in it. Ofcourse there was some interesting and worthwhile information, but as a whole, it did not resonate with me.

    I realised that our culture is very sociopathic in its nature. And i believe that 'sociopaths' manifest from cultural mindset. Sociopathic behaviours are rewarded in many organisations, governements and communities. In fact, it seems clear to me that the whole system of how everything is done is completely warped and upside down. I would say it is all completely crazy! No wonder we are creating sociopaths.

    I believe strongly that all people can be healed. No one is beyond healing, compassion and Love.
    Because of my spiritual beliefs, i do not subscribe to conventional medicine. I do not believe that our current medical system can help sociopaths. Especailly considering most of the drugs are made by sociopathic organisations

    I also know that we are One. And that we are God's children. To condemn one, is to condemn all. To Love one, is to love all. There is no one that is beyond hope, and all people are aspects of ourself.
     
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  13. Gaze

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    Good point. I've met a few people who I believe lack empathy, who take joy in other people's suffering. Or I could just be paranoid as usual :D. In any case, I think true sociopaths get their power from taking advantage of someone those who are intimidated by them, especially someone who finds it hard to belief that anyone can lack so much empathy. In other words, they develop their lack of empathy from the people they try to take advantage. If they see they can manipulate and get under your skin, and rattle you, then they will because they realize it's having an effect. That's where their power derives. If you believe they are as powerful and as dangerous as they say they are, it tends to give them more power and advantage. If they see you are affected by them, then they get the upper hand. I don't doubt they are dangerous and they usually have an mo. They generally go after those who they they believe are gullible and vulnerable. They often target those who are "simple". In other words, they get their kicks from those who they can make feel inferior and weaker. They want you to feel less or beneath them. Their goal is control and the upper hand. However, if you're not affected by them or if you are immune, you are lucky. IF you can see them a mile away and stay away, chances are you've dodged a bullet. If you're not easily affected by them, then the impact won't be as harsh. In other words, I don't always think it's a case of someone being sociopath or not. Sometimes, it's a developed trait. Depending on the response they get, they will likely adjusts their sociology and psychology to fit the person. They are excellent chameleons. They can seem normal one minute but next do something to make you shiver. So, it depends.

    I also just think we may sometimes give the sociopathic label to someone as a reason or excuse for their behavior rather than this person taking personal responsibility for their actions and choosing not to take those actions. Arguing that they have no control over those apathetic feels or emotions makes it too easy for sociopath to justify and continue their behavior. It makes them feel smarter and more attuned than everyone else.

    Edit: Kinda makes you think of ethics. Does the fact that someone doesn't have empathy mean they don't have ethics?
     
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  14. La Sagna

    La Sagna Trying to become a butterfly

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    My husbands identifies himself as a sociopath. This is because he fully admits to having very little empathy and takes great fun in manipulating people.

    I do not believe that he would be considered a full-blown sociopath but if you look at the scale for sociopathy he scores quite high.

    He has never been in jail and he is not physically violent but he can be quite cruel and cannot relate to other people like most people do. He is also very successful in his own way.

    I was going to make some observations about him and sociopathy but I think I will do that later. I have to gather my thoughts on this first.
     
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  15. La Sagna

    La Sagna Trying to become a butterfly

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    I have a confession to make _ I am married to a sociopath.

    Psychopathy (/saɪˈkɒpəθi/) (or sociopathy (/ˈsoʊsiəˌpæθi/)) is defined as either an aspect of personality or as a personality disorder, characterized by enduring dissocial or antisocial behavior, a diminished capacity for empathy or remorse, and poor behavioral controls or fearless dominance. There are various definitions which are only partly overlapping and sometimes appear contradictory.

    I have done some research on sociopaths today just to get a better understanding, and it seems that my husband is right, he is more than likely a sociopath according to the the DSM and the Hare Psychopathy Checklist.
    I was telling him that I thought maybe he was narcissistic and he didn't like that. It turns out that a major difference between a sociopath (or psychopath which is essentially the same thing but I'll stick to using sociopath because it doesn't sound as bad) is that a narcissist is not aware that they are different than others they just think they are better but sociopaths are aware that they are different than the average person. My husband has said for a number of years that he believes he is a sociopath, before that he claimed that his heart was "two sizes too small".

    This is a difficult thing for me to admit and brings up lots of emotions.

    One of the things that had made me think that he probably wasn't really a sociopath was that he does seem to have a certain type of empathy and does have a moral code that he adheres to.

    I have disovered that there are two types of empathy, affective empahty and cognitive empathy. Apparently sociopaths have a dissorder that affect their affective or emotional empathy but still have cognitive empathy. People who are autisitc are the opposite, they have affective empathy but don't have cognitive empathy.

    Affective empathy, also called emotional empathy:[15] the capacity to respond with an appropriate emotion to another's mental states.[14] Our ability to empathize emotionally is supposed to be based on emotional contagion:[15] being affected by another's emotional or arousal state.[16]

    Cognitive empathy: the capacity to understand another's perspective or mental state.[14][17] The terms cognitive empathy and theory of mind are often used synonymously, but due to a lack of studies comparing theory of mind with types of empathy, it is unclear whether these are equivalent.[18]


    In the case of my husband, I think if he believes intelectually that someone deserves empathy then he will chose to have it. He considers emotions as weaknesses and people who display emotions are seen as weak and aren't given any consideration towards those emotions.

    I could say a lot of things about the behaviour he has exhibited throughout the years but I think right now I am a little overwhelmed with the realization that I have more than likely been living with a sociopath for the last 25 years. It does explain a lot.

    I do have to say that it is true that they can't help who they are and that they can't feel empathy the way you and I usually do. He also comes from a very dysfunctional family. I have never seen him or his sister kiss or hug their mother, even on Mother's Day, but they would kiss and hug their dad. His mom is very cold and he has never seen her cry, even when her husband died, so I always figured that is why he had a difficult time empathizing with the feelings of others. His mom lost her mother when she was very young and had to live with an asshole of a dad and two asshole brothers so I could empathize with the reasons why she is the way she is. Wow, it seems that my overwhelming empathy and consideration for others led me to keep forgiving the bad behaviour of a sociopath.

    No wonder I decided that I couldn't do this anymore.
     
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    LucyJr

    LucyJr Well-known member

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  17. muir

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    ''by default their empathy switch is off''

    Tell me would you want to share living space with someone who might at the flick of an empathy switch decide that they were going to kill you and bury you under the patio, then take your credit card and all your money and run off and do the same again to someone else?

    I want to stress there IS A SCALE with all this. Not all sociopaths are full blown sociopaths. They are all potentially dangerous but the full blown ones are full blown dangerous!

    My advice is: do not keep a psychopath in your life! You might have the best intentions...you might want to save them... but when your guard is down they will take advantage

    There is a distinction that some make between psycopaths and sociopaths which is that psycopathy is a hereditary condition...it is passed down through families in the genes

    Sociopathy on the other hand is developed. So if someone is brutalised their heart can harden until they feel less empathy. What this effectively means is that it is possible to create an increasingly sociopathic society if more and more people are brutalised

    The quickest way to do this would be to create an ideology which sees everyone compete against each other in a dog eat dog world whilst telling them that such behaviour is simply human nature

    If you think about the royal families of europe....they all interbreed with each other....they are highly incestuous. This goes back to the royal families of egypt. This is because they are obsessed with bloodlines. These families also have been responsible for wars and torture for example the burning of people at the stake. They have been doing these sorts of things for hundreds of years and violently crushing any resistance

    Even today in the UK it is illegal under the Treason Felony Act 1848 to even imagine a world without the british royal family. Not just to speak about it but to IMAGINE it in your own head....is illegal

    One of the things these royal families have been passing down is the psycopathy gene. The British royal family for example traces its roots back to Vlad the Impaler who would impale thousands of his prisoners whilst still alive

    There are plenty of videos online about the links of the royal family to the nazis and peadophiles and so on

    Psycopaths have a low resting heart rate. They need greater stimulation to get a buzz so they are driven to increasingly insane behaviour to get a buzz. This will often involve performing things that are taboo. The more taboo something is the more of a buzz they will get from doing it
     
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  18. La Sagna

    La Sagna Trying to become a butterfly

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    I read that article. I think it reflects the idea that sociopaths can choose to have empathy if they want. I don't believe though that they feel it the way we do. There is no evidence that the parts that light up in the brain when they 'empathize' are what actually causes the 'feelings' that we have when we empathize, maybe it is just the cognitive function of empathizing and there is something else that causes the 'feeling' part.

    I asked my husband if he ever has a feeling of love. He had to think about it and figure if he has. He said that he thinks that he does love and explained a moment when he got very upset at me because I mentioned that it might be better if we split up as showing that he does love me. It was all very analytical about reactions and nothing about feelings. That's not how I view love. To me love is a feeling of caring and wanting nothing but the best for another person.

    I also asked him how he felt when his dad died (he was 20 when that happened) and he again had to think about it and say that he thought he did feel upset and then said he got over it quickly because his dad had lived a good and long life. It kind of explains why shortly after my mom died he told me to 'get over it'. He still claims that that was him showing that he cared because it was good advice. To him 'feelings' are a waste of time or a manipulation tactic. He just doesn't understand that feelings are things that most of us just feel spontaneously and not something that we conjure in our minds by choice. I guess if he doesn't feel them then it is completely understandable that he doesn't understand them.

    I have to say that sociopaths can be quite pleasant and even helpful when they choose to. They can choose to act in whichever way they like, so they can act like a kind person if they want to, but they don't feel it, they just act it, whatever they believe serves their purpose. They can decide that somebody deserves to be treated a certain way, good or bad, they just don't take the emotions of others as a consideration or what others think is 'right' or 'wrong' either. In their opinion they make a reasoned judgement call that only takes into action their own value and not anybody else's or society's. My husband enjoys manipulating people, both to get what he wants and for entertainment purposes, and in his opinion if people can be manipulated then they deserve to be. He has no remorse whatsoever. On the other hand he always gives money to street people and he gives money to a charity that helps kids that have been abused. He also is the first one to offer to help his friends when they need help moving. He once helped save an old lady who was trapped on her balcony while others just ignored her.

    I really think that you wouldn't recognize a sociopath unless you knew them very well or they somehow let you in to their inner thoughts. Most are not murderers or criminals, but they don't take laws into consideration. They can be anybody you know that doesn't appear 'warm hearted' but they would likely seem very nice and charming or funny.

    As with most things experts believe that this is caused by a combination of nature and nurture. I think that the nurture part may be what determines if somebody becomes a murderer or violent criminal or not. In the case of my husband, his mom's family are known as cold and inconsiderate people but his dad's family were very nice and gentle people, very much respected by others, so I'm thinking that his dad's influence probably helped form his ideas of what he considers 'right' or 'wrong'. He idolized his dad so that would influence him (although the fact that he idolized his dad but barely grieved him does show that there is something different in the way he processes feelings). I don't believe that he was physically abused as a child or witnessed violence so that probably stopped him from developing the more violent tendencies. I'm sure his mom's coldness affected him though.
     
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  19. La Sagna

    La Sagna Trying to become a butterfly

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    Here's a well-functioning sociopaths's description of himself:

    I Am a Sociopath

    Remorse is alien to me. I have a penchant for deceit. I am generally free of entangling and irrational emotions. I am strategic and canny, intelligent and confident, but I also struggle to react appropriately to other people's confusing and emotion-driven social cues.

    I was not a victim of child abuse, and I am not a murderer or a criminal. I have never skulked behind prison walls; I prefer mine to be covered in ivy. I am an accomplished attorney and law professor, a well-respected young academic who regularly writes for law journals and advances legal theories. I donate 10 percent of my income to charity and teach Sunday school for the Mormon Church. I have a close circle of family and friends whom I love and who very much love me. Does this sound like you? Recent estimates say that one in every 25 people is a sociopath. But you're not a serial killer, never imprisoned? Most of us aren't. Only 20 percent of male and female prison inmates are sociopaths, although we are probably responsible for about half of all serious crimes committed. Nor are most sociopaths incarcerated. In fact, the silent majority of sociopaths live freely and anonymously, holding down jobs, getting married, having children. We are legion and diverse.

    You would like me if you met me. I have the kind of smile that is common among television show characters and rare in real life, perfect in its sparkly teeth dimensions and ability to express pleasant invitation. I'm the sort of date you would love to take to your ex's wedding—fun, exciting, the perfect office escort. And I'm just the right amount of successful so that your parents would be thrilled if you brought me home.


    Perhaps the most noticeable aspect of my confidence is the way I sustain eye contact. Some people have called it the "predator stare." Sociopaths are unfazed by uninterrupted eye contact. Our failure to look away politely is also perceived as being aggressive or seductive. It can throw people off balance, but often in an exciting way that imitates the unsettling feeling of infatuation. Do you ever find yourself using charm and confidence to get people to do things for you that they otherwise wouldn't? Some might call it manipulation, but I like to think I'm using what God gave me.
     
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  20. OP
    LucyJr

    LucyJr Well-known member

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    Ugh, who, me? thank you

    I think I know 3 of them up to this time. I always recognise them by their eyes. They either have the "predator stare", or they have a normal stare but lacking in emotion. All you can see is happiness and anger in their eyes. And also very superficial, their eyes lack depth whatsoever.

    Yes, they don't need someone who can beat them at their own game, they need someone who can love them just as they are.

    Yes, I strongly agree with you.
    Psychiatry means "doctor of the sould". Question: Ho can they treat the soul if they don't believe in it??? They don't believe in conscience either. They believe in "chimical imbalance of the brain" and "genetic disease" and that's it.

    Yes, exactly. That's one of the reasons why sociopaths are much more numerous in the individualistic/modern society. And I soo agree with you that society actually train and create sociopaths, just like muir said.

    Neither I believe they can help sociopaths. In fact, I don't believe that they could cure any mental disease...many of these disease you couldn't call actually a "mental disease"

    True. They can be healed, because they have been healed. Hystory teach us that.
     
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