I've just finished reading your book, and wanted to thank you for writing it. True honesty, combined with acute self-knowledge, is so rare in any autobiographical work that it's truly a gift when I come across a gem like this.
I suppose I should preface by saying that I'm not exactly sure if I'm a sociopath. I lack some of the characteristics you describe, such as sensation-seeking tendencies and fluid sexuality.
That being said, as I read your book I couldn't help but identify with so many parts of your story. You are basically me, cranked up to eleven. That is, I do seem to possess many of the traits you mention, just to a somewhat lesser degree than you do.
Power is the dominant lens through which I view social relations. I am sometimes scarily confident in my ideas, to the extent that people absorb the philosophies and biases I project almost by osmosis. Then I get sick of them because they've become intellectual carbon copies of "me". I have trouble believing in the concept of love or fixed identity since I have not had the experience of feeling them before - at least not in the sense most people seem to mean them.
Recently I had a dispute with a friend which ultimately ended the relationship. Typically enough, I held all the cards while she engaged in emotional outbursts, but despite the fact that I "won" in the end, I still felt disturbed because this was a relationship I wanted to keep, yet I could not see anything I would have done differently to salvage it.
Somehow, my friend had expected her emotional threats to have an impact on me that was different from what rationality and the balance of power would have suggested. This wasn't the first time something like this had happened, and it made me feel uncomfortable to realise I saw things in a way that was fundamentally different from other people, and that I could not seem to bridge that gap despite my best efforts to consider other strategic paths.
That's when I discovered your book.
I don't know if you realise what a gift you've given to people like me (us?). Reading it was like discovering an oasis in an alien desert. After months of searching for answers in literature, philosophy and even random internet forums and blogs, all of which seemed completely irrelevant to what I was going through, I found your Confessions to be a rare source of solace.
It's incredibly inspiring to read about someone older and more experienced than me, who seems to share the very traits I have, and who has nonetheless managed to create and (even more importantly) maintain a successful life and career.
I used to feel guilty about manipulating people, but more and more, I'm coming to understand its absolute necessity if I am to make my way in this world and achieve my goals. Your book has given me further assurance that this is not only necessary, but could in fact be seen as an ethical, charitable thing to do. If it makes empaths happy to be deceived in certain situations, where's the harm in that? Perhaps my real sin has been in being half-hearted about my schemes, instead of going full bore ahead and ensuring that I get away with them fully. Not just doing the minimum to get by (clumsily), but doing whatever is necessary for a graceful, virtuoso performance.
Thank you for casting light on an alternative system of ethics, a way of living life that works for people like me. I felt like I was reading a version of Seneca's "Letters" that was personally addressed to me.
I've never written to an author before, but you struck a chord with me.