Monday, July 24, 2017

Grains of sand

From a reader:

4 minutes ago I finished your book. Loved every page of it. Devoured it in 3 days I loved it so much. I've always been so intrigued by psychopathy and other behavioural disorders. I've thought for a long time that it's unjust to punish people for who they are and their genuine wants and desires. My opinion even extents to pedophiles and all the rest.. But it does leave me confused as I do feel hurting people is wrong (I am an empath). Irrelevant. Anyways.

On the last page you invited the reader to email you to discover your real name. I would love to know it. I had a suspicion too that you were perhaps a male? Throughout the book I kept thinking about your motives for writing.. In the conclusion you mentioned changing the world, suggesting that a motive was to end the stigma around sociopathy, in hopes for an easier future for you, 'in the light'? But was it also somewhat out of boredom, the need for a stimulus? Or not only a protection of yourself, but the possible protection of future sociopaths ("inclusive fitness theory"). Which gave birth to my final question below.

Final query: Can you empathise with other Sociopaths? You don't mention having a relationship with other sociopaths.. I don't know how that dynamic would go, do you?

My response:

I don't think I have empathy for other sociopaths, but for whatever reason I have always had a sense that there is not as much separation between us as some people think. What is bad for one group of people really is bad for all people. I have always intuited that, but used to come up with utilitarian reasons to justify that belief. Just in the past few weeks I feel like I have realized the underlying belief is that for each one of us, part of our identity is our individuality and part of our identity is we collectively make up the universe -- like how cells in the body are both individual and collective, or like how a beach is really just a collection of grains of sand. 

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Sociopath's perspective on being in love

From a reader:

I’m a male sociopath in his late 20s, and M.E. has loaned me her pulpit, because I’ve been in love, which I know from personal experience that that’s not something entirely unique for somebody like me (I know at least one other outlier), so it may apply to some of her readers. And because, well, I asked for the use of said pulpit. And, of course, because she’s been gracious-enough and interested-enough to see where I might be going with this.

            I’m high-functioning. I blend. I excel, and I don’t draw suspicion. The medical parameters that define sociopathy by the prerequisite of pre-adult fuck-ups and missteps seems just as asinine to me as to anyone. Not screwing up or making mistakes before a diagnostic age doesn’t change who you are, or what you are; just means you can watch your ass. You aren’t a total idiot. Good for you. But kids are idiots, across the board, and at the end of adolescence, I met a girl.

            Started off pretty mundane, really. She agreed to go out. She got cold feet. I saw reluctance as a game. I successfully made her go out with me, and that was pretty much it, as far as I was concerned; I won. But she wanted to hang out with me the next day, and for some reason, I did too. We spent time together, and then she had to leave. Maybe because I wasn’t ready for her to leave yet, and because it wasn’t on my terms, but the absence made the heart grow fonder.

        After weeks of talking to another human being, every single night, for 2 – 6 hours at a time, I finally had a moment of clarity; I (still) forget what my mother looks like if I haven’t seen her in a week, but I actually miss somebody when I don’t see or hear from her. I might be feeling something for somebody. Faced with two options, instead of cutting and running, I went all-in, because this was the weirdest game of my life. Either I was wrong, which’d be a first, or else I actually had a shot of an emotional bond, which was also a first. So I bet it all, threw caution to the wind, and invested in whatever other bullshit poetic stereotypes I could think of. I even wrote her a poem and asked her to go steady with me; we both cried. Well, I shed one tear, but that was a personal victory.

        I attempted self-delusion. I’d read everything there was to read about sociopathy, ASPD, and about psychopathy. If I felt love, I must’ve been wrong; I couldn’t be a sociopath, by definition. But I still couldn’t make myself care about anyone or anything else, and I still gut-laughed when cripples fell, despite my best efforts. I grew to quietly accept that I was still an asshole, and she was just the one exception to all my rules: the one I didn’t get tired of, the one I didn’t want anything from but her company, the one I gave a fuck about even when it had no bearing on myself. The one I resolved to never manipulate in any way.

        I was happy. Not satisfied, like winning a fight, or getting my way, and not amused or entertained, but happy. It was fucking intoxicating. Addicting. Like nothing I’d ever felt before; I felt simple for ever doubting the empaths I saw with their dumbass little bliss, because I actually had it. And it was real.

        We were together for years. I joined the military, because I’d already had plans to kill people and not go to jail, and I wasn’t going to bitch out on plans I’d told others of just because of somebody else or their feelings, and still she stayed loyal. Finally, she broke it off, for her own personal reasons. I didn’t blame her. What’s incredible is that I still don’t. The only person I haven’t ever been able to be mad at, even if I tried, and rage is the one thing I’m truly good at.

        I imagined that I should be furious at how she could be so dumb to throw away one of the only times lightning struck and somebody like me felt love. I wanted to think her stupid for throwing away my complete, unfettered, and unchallenged love, because nobody could love her with the same focus I could. And her friends did.

        But I realized that the reason I couldn’t actually judge is because I don’t know. I can’t claim that. I have no idea how somebody else would love her, and maybe a normal man would be able to love her, and her family, and his family, and whoever else, and still be full of love leftover. Maybe somebody else would have room in his mind for all the love I felt and other loves, but without all the hate that I always have in me. Even if she could appreciate the statistical anomaly, I’d never tell her what I was, so it’s not like she could be culpable. And even if she’d known, if leaving me was what she needed, I actually just wanted her to be happy, for whatever fucked-up reason, far more than I’ve ever wanted myself to be happy.

        I’ve read, all my life, the “studies,” the bullshit, about how sociopaths aren’t capable of love. I’ve heard the “prognosis,” all of which end with the same recommendation: everyone who knows any sociopath should cut all ties and abandon them. I’ve even read sociopaths’ accounts of being in love. One described it as all-consuming, wanting to suck the air out of the person’s lungs. I think that might actually be the sociopath’s infatuation, but I’m not positive that’s love. When you don’t care about anything, the one thing you do care about can be intoxicating.

        But to actually love somebody, it’s selfless. When all you have is yourself, that’s dangerous. It’s addictive, it’s destructive, and it’s terrible. Love actually is all they crack it up to be. But if you don’t even love your family, if all you love is one person, it’s crushing, unrelenting, and as single-dimensioned as a fucking fairy tale.

        To say I love this girl more than myself isn’t that impressive. I couldn’t give a shit about my own personal well-being. If picking a fight or riding a motorcycle breaks up the monotony of the day, let’s roll the dice. But I can say that I was willing to grow old for her, and that I still dream about her, and both are equally horrifying.

        I’m proud of her for stepping away before I or my lifestyle scarred her, but I hate myself every single day for it. Letting her go without manipulating her into staying, every day that I don’t call her and worm my way back into her life, is the only selfless thing that I’ve ever done, probably my only “redeeming factor.” But I also live every day knowing that I could. Not contacting her seems to be the only “decent” thing I’ve ever really done. The voice that says I could tells me I’m a little bitch for losing the only game I actually care about anymore. And I live with the self-directed anger. The fact that I don’t is more proof to me that I actually do love her than any proof I ever saw while riding the high.

        I’m working on being as angry as I used to be, but instead of fueling fearless aggression that drives success, my apathy now tends to be a shitty little anchor tempting me towards comfort and complacency. I’m open to tips from anyone who’s been there before, to get back to where I was. I do not value this “personal growth.”

        This isn’t a tale of redemption; I never stopped treating people like the social commodity they are before, during, or after being a mutually loving relationship. This isn’t a bitch-session; if I had to do it again, knowing what I know now, I’d still do the same, because that high was indescribable. And it isn’t advice, because I’m not “better” for having been through the experience. If you have the chance, do whatever you fucking want. These are just words, and one solitary account. If you’ve been through the same, you aren’t alone. If you haven’t, you’re in the majority. But the concept that a sociopath can’t feel love, under the right circumstances, real, selfless love, is utter bullshit, and I’d beat to death anybody that tried to argue. And I wouldn’t even feel bad about it.

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Monster's Children

From a reader:

So I was wondering if you'd take a look and possibly review on your blog.

Monster's Children

The Queen of Order and the Trickster gods originally formed an alliance to defend against the dreaded beast they called the Monster. That alliance was dashed with the Monster’s defeat. The war that erupted with the alliance’s dissolution has ripped the land apart for millennia. With recent defeats the Tricksters face an unpleasant truth. They need the help of their most malicious and feared member. They need Spider and her Chosen to win this war.

Jamie is the newest Chosen of the Spider. Having spent her childhood struggling to fit within society, Jamie has been set free from hiding behind masks. As she learns to contend with the power within her so to must she come to terms with her feelings for her alluring teammate Nettle. 

Jamie and her team must discover what makes them so special before they fight against those that would bring Order to a world meant to stay wild and free. Most importantly she must learn what it means to be a monster’s child.

Jamie is noted by one reader as a “Psychopathic Power Ranger that stabs her way through obstacles leaving a trail of bodies.” 

Another said about her team, “This is what Captain Planet and the Planeteers would look like if they had a lust for blood and each other instead of charity work.” 

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