Wednesday, January 6, 2010

More portraits of sociopathy

People always ask me questions. Sometimes I ask them questions back:

What did it feel like to discover you were a sociopath? Were you more relieved or curious that there was a label for the type of person you are?
I've been trying to put a label on myself for the type of person I am for years now -- since I was around 14 years old. The fact that I've never been able to quite understand emotions or why people have them effectively resulting in a sense of separation from the rest of society and an overwhelming drive to engage in grandiose entrepreneurial projects, the end result of which is usually a fantasy in taking over something or someone, has led me to think I had Aspergers syndrome (a mild form of autism marked with anti-social behavior and the ability to hyperfocus on sometimes superfluous hobbies).

But, after hearing from several people (the guy at the bar, an ex girlfriend, co-workers) that I had a sociopathic personality I decided to research it further and was incredibly relieved that I had finally found the correct label. At least now I feel as though I stand in some niche and that there are verifiable characteristics and an adhering portion of the population.
Did you always know you were different? or had you assumed that everyone else was just like you?
When I was in Middle School -- about 13 years old -- I came to home room one day and the kid I had been sitting next to since the beginning of the year wasn't there and everyone around me was crying. I asked what was going on and they sobbingly expressed to me that he was dead. He had been riding his ATV and flew off and hit a tree and died instantly.

My first thought? "Damnit, I wonder how long before everybody stops crying and talking about this and everything is back to normal".

That's also the first time I've ever been yelled at for not crying during an "appropriate" crying situation, but not the last. I just didn't feel ANYTHING for the situation. He was dead, who cares?

Years later my grandmother took her last breath in front of me -- I felt nothing. People die. After that my girlfriend's little brother was hit by a car and died. I had a hard time dealing with the situation because I didn't know how to be emotionally supportive.

Several of my friends commited suicide during high school and I went to all of their viewings. I remember one situation where a friend of mine said, "why aren't you crying?" and I said, "the only reason people cry at funeral's is because they're all of a sudden reminded of their own mortality and that they're going to die too, so really everyone here is just being selfish". That person never talked to me again.

So, did I always know I was different? Yeah, but I clearly saw that other people weren't the same as me. I've never been able to understand people's feelings. I just don't get it, not one bit.

I've tried to feign feelings or at least act like I have them, but that's all I've ever been in my life thus far (I'm 23) is an actor. I can adjust to any personality type within a matter of minutes. I can say things I know people will like and act in ways so people will think I'm cool. Basically I'm just a chameleon, which is great for my business aspirations hah hah.

18 comments:

  1. Wait, so is ME 23 or is he/she the italic one asking the questions? I ask this because this is oddly written for ME’s usual Q&A posts.

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  2. Daft ME said sometimes he asks questions back. You'll note the person answering is not asking questions back, therefore it's clear ME is doing the asking.

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  3. M.E,,
    Like this post.. Good read.

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  4. hahaha perfect picture me 50% and a bite taken out of it too hahaha!!!

    fits the reader so good!!

    1 bite short of a half!

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  5. So what happens, when the seduction becomes a "relationship", perhaps even long term, and the seducee learns to see through the facade?
    Does the sociopath just back off and leave because the game loses its interest once he/she (I’ll just use “he” here on out for simplicity sake) has been found out?
    When the seducee says “Hey, you lied to me about x, y, and z, you did such and such and such that shows (insert lie or inconsistency or just that you don’t give a damn here)…” when the inconsistencies can be pointed out, or the lies revealed, what does he do? Does he just move on to the next victim? Or will he see what he can salvage through his great talents of manipulation? Is it sometimes actually about that individual to him? Or is it always just a game regardless of who the hockey puck is so once he seems to have lost he leaves, or will he keep trying to see if he can win?

    Or…

    What does the sociopath do, when confronted by a "loved one" who shows him a site such as this, or some other reading material, and says "I think maybe you suffer from anti-social personality disorder and this is why"…
    Will he just leave being found out? (assuming he knows already)
    Or will the challenge then just be too tempting to resist, to see if he can still win once his true nature has been discovered?
    IE: If you are a great Seducer whilst enmeshed in your own bs, can you also be a great seducer, whilst allowing your TRUE self to show? “Hey, I’m full of $%&# but you will love me anyway.”

    What if he doesn’t know? Will his ego be offended that someone might think such a thing of him?
    Or would most be sensible enough to read and potentially discover their own true nature then?

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  6. Sociopathworld, thank you so much for your informative posts. It's helped me to understand your perspective, and that in turn is helping me to interact with my own socio without being too manipulated. I'm trying to be more aware of the manipulations. Anyway, I appreciate the education.

    E

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  7. I've always hated it when people around me died, just because my response was always wrong. It happens so infrequently that it is hard to script a reaction for, so usually when someone around me dies, I just go somewhere else for a while. Out of sight, out of mind and no one is the wiser that I couldn't really care less.

    My first lesson with this was when my paternal grandmother died (I think I was around 11 or 12) and I was stupid enough make my annoyance at being forced to go to the funeral rather clear to my Dad. He did not appreciate my complete lack of interest - much less sympathy - in the death of his Mom or the funeral and he smacked me around quite a bit over it.

    I am quite good at feigning empathy in most situations, but not around deaths. I just can't really care and feel stupid for even trying to pretend like I do. After all we all die, its perfectly natural and normal. When I stand to benefit from it, I don't mind feigning any sort of emotional response, but since sympathy for someone dying generally doesn't get me anything I just can't get myself motivated to even pretend to care.

    The whole infatuation with, fear of, and ritual around death is one of those things I just don't get at all, in any respect. I guess I can appreciate that you might miss someone after they're gone; but you don't see the same reaction to people moving far away as you do to people dying, though the effective result (missing them) is exactly the same. I can also understand being ticked off if someone useful to you in whatever way died unexpectedly.

    But come on, we all - without exception - are going to die and we all know it so I just don't get the hoopla. I have no desire or interest in taking anyone's life (as far as I can tell dead people are quite useless to me), but I don't see any reason to act like an idiot when people do die.

    This is one of those stupid things I just don't get at all and judging by most empathic responses, I am glad I don't.

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  8. E wrote:

    "I appreciate the education."


    Yes, there is a lot of good information on this blog. I don't know of any other just like it, and your links to various Articles are great too.

    Thanks from another learner!...

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  9. I'd like to hear the answer to this too.

    "So what happens, when the seduction becomes a "relationship", perhaps even long term, and the seducee learns to see through the facade?
    Does the sociopath just back off and leave because the game loses its interest once he/she (I’ll just use “he” here on out for simplicity sake) has been found out?
    When the seducee says “Hey, you lied to me about x, y, and z, you did such and such and such that shows (insert lie or inconsistency or just that you don’t give a damn here)…” when the inconsistencies can be pointed out, or the lies revealed, what does he do? Does he just move on to the next victim? Or will he see what he can salvage through his great talents of manipulation? Is it sometimes actually about that individual to him? Or is it always just a game regardless of who the hockey puck is so once he seems to have lost he leaves, or will he keep trying to see if he can win?"

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  10. "So once he seems to have lost he leaves, or will he keep trying to see if he can win?"

    Every situation is different.

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  11. "the only reason people cry at funerals is because they're all of a sudden reminded of their own mortality and that they're going to die too, so really everyone here is just being selfish"

    that's actually a damn good point. if a person lived a significant life, their mortality is based on that significance being accurately comprehended by a wise living generation who can keep their emotional composure in order to sustain a developed concept of ultimate reality. the actual experience of being able to interact with the person's physical being is just a vehicle and an instrument with which to have arrived at the present realization of the appropriateness for what naturally has come to end as a result of real life causes/effects.

    especially if you're crying as a result of a death from old age, it's your own selfish fault for not preparing yourself for what was obviously going to occur 10,20, 60 years ago. in ANY good relationship, you prepare for their death of old age from the start, so by the time they do die, you're glad that their life has successfully approached its next horizon.

    unless you start sabotaging ATVs to make deaths look like accidents, or torture animals, or pray for relatives to die prematurely so you can inherit their wealth, you might actually be a philosopher with a high emotional composure rather than an actual sociopath. also, a true sociopath imo NEVER EVER EVER will allow himself to even remotely consider that he's a sociopath. sociopaths literally make up reality in whatever way grants them the maximum number of talking points. presumptuousness which allows for the most viral popularity ranking. you lose authority if you're considered "crazy", so a sociopath will always turn his pseudo-philosphical justifications of anarchy into political/cultural movements in order to represent himself in a group that is falsely considered honorable.

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  12. The reasons people cry at funerals are many and varied; yes, self pity at their own mortality is one of them but not the only one. The feeling of missing someone who has died is on a totally different level to that of missing someone who has moved far away - the person who has moved still exists in the world, you can call them on the phone or email them and may even see them again (and anyway, people do cry when someone they love moves far away! Not as much as they do when someone dies, granted, but it is sad for them nonetheless). Someone who has died has ceased to exist, everything they were is unrecoverable, and if you happen to have thought that they were a good person to have in the world then you will feel like the world is a less rich place now they are gone. Knowing that something that was precious to you is lost forever is upsetting for most people - it doesn't even have to be a person, many people cry at the loss of physical objects too. This doesn't have to be a selfish emotion, either; I cried a little bit when I visited Indonesia this summer and saw the endless palm oil plantations which have contributed to the loss of vast swathes of rainforest - this was sadness at a loss to the whole world, not just myself.

    Going to back to the issue of crying at one's own mortality, I think this also goes a little deeper to something that most people can't articulate; I don't think it's just their own mortality that upsets them, it's the entire concept of mortality that is almost impossible for humans to get their heads around, and which terrifies them when they try to. We cannot conceive of the idea of a human consciousness simply ending, which is why we invent ideas like the soul and heaven and mind-body dualism. It's really just a kind of existential anxiety. We are terrified of the nothingness.

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  13. The last paragraph is especially accurate. A part of functioning as a sociopath is making different "masks" for certain situations. Using these masks, with certain characteristics and beliefs associated with them, are generally enough to pass. The more masks you have, the easier it is to be accepted as "normal". Despite being an atheist, I have developed my christian mask very well, and am apparently on a fast track to heaven. I generally assume the mask of someone who is shy/nerdy, as it varies the least from my own persona, and allows me to be more calculating than my christian mask. While I do have many masks, those are the ones I use the most frequently, and are therefore the most developed.

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  14. I can relate to this somewhat. Like when people have cried and I have not...then I got yelled at or called a freak because of no emotion. When I was 14 my mothers boyfriend died in front of me and it partially was my fault because she went to pick me up and he didn't receive oxygen. I saw him laying there pale and I just was thinking to myself when is this bitch going to stop crying and give me the attention she was supposed to give me. so I asked her to bring me home and she mourned. While I was getting yelled at for not feeling bad at all. Now my mother was a paranoid schizophrenic. She def did a number on me but I learned from it and now I def appreciate the lack of empathy that I contain.

    I was alone growing up no one liked me because I was too smart for them. They called me dumb and stupid because they didn't understand why I did the things that I did. Realized my IQ was fairly high within the past year (I am 23 now) and my psychologist thinks I have ADHD. I don't I just get the medication to lose weight. I refuse treatment and always have because I would always borrow books from them and read on what I think I have and why I can't feel. They said I might have PTSD but I don't because I don't have episodes, I just tell boyfriends I do for lack of communication on my part of my anger towards them.

    Other than that I can tell you I do have the traits of a socio but again who would believe me and honestly who would care.

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  15. More people need to be on http://sociopath-community.com/

    !!! it used to be connected to this blog but was disconnected over a year ago. We need fresh blood and lots of interesting things have happened recently (relates to kiwifar.ms drama: https://archive.is/M2tXa) that will go down in the forum's history! Be sure to check out http://www.psychforums.com/antisocial-personality/ too, as some of its regulars are regulars on SC too!

    Goddamn ME refused to reconnect the blog to the forum so we SC goers will just have to spam advertisements for the forum in the comments section. ;)

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