This was an interesting new comment to an old post, "Sociopath child, to teen, to adult":
It's stunning how accurately this describes my life. I get so frustrated when I hear people say sociopaths are the same person from fetus into adulthood. That sociopaths were heartless, self absorbed little monsters when they were children or they aren't really sociopaths.
But I recall a time of feeling normal and having emotions. Or at least feeling as though I had emotions. Feeling love and crying over things, even if they were actually fake. I don't think sociopathy blossoms until your 20's. It's like a seed of darkness that slowly shallows you as you mature.
My childhood followed the same trend of fitting in to hitting an abrupt wall where I was a weird, socially awkward outcast. Always getting picked on and having a very tight circle of friends, going about life like a dog trying to play piano. It wasn't until my mid to late teens that I started studying psychology and social interaction, picking up books on how to manipulate and pick up women, etc.
Sooner or later I became good at getting what I want (control over men, sex from women). It was then I stumbled upon books about psychopathy, and was slowly starting to manifest all the telltale traits. I'm 27 now, and can't remember the last time I really felt all that much about anything. I think I went through a "mean streak" in my early 20's, but now I'm starting to mellow. I don't feel love, but I don't feel contempt either.
I think I went through that deep soul searching period to reach this point, and I feel I've done a 180 away from the callous, cynical, reckless ways of the dysfunctional sociopath. I don't feel compassionate, but maybe a little benign. Like the world is undeserving, but I happen to be merciful. I don't see a reason to do harm, so why not try to be civil and let the sheep adore me?
It was really challenging to write the childhood chapters of the book. I wasn't sure whether to write them in the mindset that I have now about things that I used to think were perfectly normal or innocent (manipulations, certain antisocial behavior, etc.) or whether to write it with the mindset that I had then, with all of the megalomania or delusional thinking that I was heavily subject to until my late teens and early twenties. Like everything with the book, my choice ended up being to basically filter out only the most sociopathic seeming things -- often whatever sounded most sociopathic or interesting to my editor at the time. In a way, doing that unwittingly catered to this idea that we are static individuals -- have always been and acted the same.
The truth is I don't trust my memories of particularly my early childhood before about 8 or 9 years old. They're too hazy and they seem too dream-like to feel like they really happened to me. Maybe I was more normal than I seemed. Or maybe I was more different than I seemed. I do remember having a sense at the time that I was seemed more ruthless and coldhearted than my peers, but I also have a lot of memories of feeling pretty normal -- upset about regular things that children get upset about and megalomaniacal and selfish but perhaps no more than all children tend to be. I don't know, is it possible to have been normal and feeling emotions and then later grow into a sociopath?