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Joined: 7/20/2006
Msg: 146
characteristics of a sociopath/psychopathPage 5 of 13    (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13)
Living it up, Ted Bundy was a very charming person by all those that knew him socially (put up a great front of "normal") Charlie Manson, on the other hand was not so "charming" to MOST people. They were both antisocial personality disorder, which is the "newer" name for sociopath and psychopath. Early on in the useage of the names of many mental disorders or illnesses, one "term" or "label" would be used, and then as information on these syndroms (a cluster of behaivors) developed someone would try to "rename it" and the new term and the old term would be used sometimes together. PSychopath and sociopath are two names for the SAME syndrome (cluster of behaivors) the newer name is antisocial personality disorder (for adults) and in children it is called "conduct disorder" untiil they reach 18. Some children who are "bad actors" are labeled "oppositionally definant" instead of the practitioner putting the "conduct disorder" on them and labeling them for life.

The cluster of behaivors exibited by a sociopath=psychopath=antisocial personality disorder. It is the same rose by another name. It IS CONFUSING to non professionals and even some professionals.

Now, given all the different labels for the SAME THING. There are also differences in the DEGREE of each disorder. Some who only exibit mild behavior consistent with the disorder may be labeled antisocial personality disorder TRAITS. This means that they have some of the TRAITS but not enough to really hang the "label" on them.

Not all people with antisocial personality disorder (sociopath/psychopath) become serial killers. For the most part, they just have dysfunctional personal relationships with people within their circles at work, at home and in general. It is almost a given that they cannot have a functional emotional relationship with a S/O and generally leave people emotionally bleeding in their wake wondering what train hit them.

The semantics of the disorders are really a moot point. The behaviors and how to spot them early on BEFORE you get involved with them is the best defense. Years ago when I was working in a hospital that specialized in spinal cord and head injury rehabilitation, a sociopathic nurse manager was hired in a high level position. She literally destroyed the nursing department of the hospital during a critical nursing shortage and within six months all but one of the highly specialized nurses who had worked there, many for as long as 20 years, quit. There were several of us that SAW what was going on, and tried desperately to stem this outflow of critically needed specialists, but in vain! In the end, the psychopathic nurse manager was fired, her boss was fired and the corporation that owned the hospital eventually had to close it and sell the property because there were not enough available specialty nurses in the country to staff it for its specific purpose.

How many people who were spinal cord or head injured that NEEDED the very excellent and special care that this group of highly trained specialty nurses provided ended up with less than ideal results because of this one woman's venom?

In order to find something good out of this disaster, I did realize that the moving on of this many wonderfully trained professionals did spread their knowledge to a great many other places that I am sure it helped to educate more people in the medical system to an aspect of care that they had less knowledge of.

Dr. Robert Hare and others estimate that 4% of the general population are full blown psycho/sociopaths. The estimate that 20% of the incarcerated population is full blown also gives us an idea that more of them commit legal offenses that will land them in jail/prison.

Not all of them are "criminal", but they are 5 times more likely to be. Not all criminals are psycho/sociopathic, but have some other problem or personality disorder.

For the other 96% of us on the street, though I have no data or research to back me up, I would "guestimate" that with the divorce rate at 50%+ and domestic violence at a high rate, that MOST IF NOT ALL of us have encountered one at one time or another in some form that they "bit" us to one degree or another.

Since there seems to be increasing evidence that there is a high rate of inheritability to the personality disorders (all of them) and more evidence coming about as they are now recognizing the "adoptive syndrome" and are realizing that children of these people, even if raised in a loving adoptive home from birth have a VERY high chance of showing signs of personality disorders at a young age, even as low as 8. With very dangerous behavior and no willingness to conform, no matter what therapy is used.

I successfully raised a child whoo was very ADHD and he is a productive member of society and very loving. In the "wrong" home or with a less knowledgable mother he might have been a criminal. Enviornment helped him greatly. But I also raised a psychopathic son in the same loving and educated environment who has spent most of his adult life in prison for increasingly violent crimes. But I guarentee if you sat down to talk to him, he could convince you he was Jesus Christ himself. He is extremely intelligent and can quote from every religion in the world, the most sincere sounding sermons on forgiveness, etc. yet, he sits there as charming as Ted Bundy--and just as toxic.

I have no doubt about the hereditary aspect, my biological father is a full blown psycnopath with ALL the worst aspects, including murder, but he has gotten away with it, partly because he is very wealthy. But 7 ex wives will testify, and a multitude of former business partners, to say nothing of the people whoo have "gone missing" with him on trips out of the country. Sounds too bizarre to be "true"--but he isn't the worst I have heard about by far. Look at the news, John Wayne Gacy, Ted Bundy, Charlie Manson, Reverend JOnes, and I am sure you can all name the names from the news, but the ones that are the WORST are the ones that will never be "caught" and executed or put in prison.
Joined: 3/6/2007
Msg: 147
characteristics of a sociopath/psychopath
Posted: 3/17/2007 12:38:57 PM

Sounds too bizarre to be "true"--but he isn't the worst I have heard about by far. Look at the news, John Wayne Gacy, Ted Bundy, Charlie Manson, Reverend JOnes, and I am sure you can all name the names from the news, but the ones that are the WORST are the ones that will never be "caught" and executed or put in prison.

for instance The Zodiac Killer..he taunted police with letters of blowing up school buses.
Joined: 7/20/2006
Msg: 149
characteristics of a sociopath/psychopath
Posted: 3/17/2007 4:58:39 PM
MSN has a free forum, you have to join but it is free, if you google "psychopath forum" it will come up and you can get in. It is totally about psychopaths and narcissists (which are hard to distinguish, but what the label is doesn't matter, "close enough for government work." The whole thing is devoted to professional people giving advice and stories from people who have been victims. GREAT site. I read and read and read last night.

The best advice I can give is KNOW YOUR ENEMY--some are VERY slick, Ted Bundy was one of those very slick ones. Even used his charm to lure some of the women to him.

My PERSONAL "on the street" thing is that many times they will "come on strong" upon first meeting you--want to be your best friend almost immediately. If that happens, step back and watch and wait.

Look for INCONSISTENCIES in their stories. Some are slick liars but they have problems "keeping their stories straight" so watch for that, back peddling on being caught, avoiding answering a question directly.

Watch how they interact with others--are they always calling others dumb, stupid, pointing out how SUPERIOR they are to the others.

READ READ READ and learn, learn learn. It isn't an easy subject, and no "system" of spotting them is fool proof--I've been fooled, but at the FIRST detectable sign, I RUN. No matter who they are, how much I love them, etc. they get NO SECOND CHANCES. That may sound harsh, but self preservation is my goal. I only let "tried and true" people into my "ring of intimacy and trust"---I've weeded out quite a few on the telephone from POF in a couple of calls. One even only by email. He threatened me and to hurt me if I didn't let him have my home e mail address--he, after all, had given me his. His demanding my home e mail address, which hooks to my business web site would have given out more info than I was comfortable giving him, but he was more the "charlie manson" type than the Ted Bundy type who would have had patience enough to wait longer.

REad on the internet, and buy books and learn all you can, and then, most important, put it into practice.
Joined: 3/6/2007
Msg: 150
characteristics of a sociopath/psychopath
Posted: 3/17/2007 5:57:37 PM

The best advice I can give is KNOW YOUR ENEMY--some are VERY slick, Ted Bundy was one of those very slick ones. Even used his charm to lure some of the women to him.

His intelligence is what made him so dangerous...he wasn't your average garden variety psychopath He had a high IQ..........
Joined: 11/15/2006
Msg: 151
characteristics of a sociopath/psychopath
Posted: 3/17/2007 10:24:39 PM
This is what i'm doing now by discrediting these criterias.

A little bit of knowledge really is a dangerous thing.

First point: Your research fails to adequately relate the actual language of the DSM-IV

On the first set of points (you listed 1-6 yet there are 7) items 1-7 are descriptive of the language in paragraph A

A. There is a pervasive pattern of disregard for and violation of the rights of others occurring since age 15 years, as indicated by three (or more) of the following: (1) failure to conform to social norms with respect to lawful behaviors as indicated by repeatedly performing acts that are grounds for arrest
(2) deceitfulness, as indicated by repeated lying, use of aliases, or conning others for personal profit or pleasure
(3) impulsivity or failure to plan ahead
(4) irritability and aggressiveness, as indicated by repeated physical fights or assaults
(5) reckless disregard for safety of self or others
(6) consistent irresponsibility, as indicated by repeated failure to sustain consistent work behavior or honor financial obligations
(7) lack of remorse, as indicated by being indifferent to or rationalizing having hurt, mistreated, or stolen from another

Though the specific words of the US and EU criteria are different, the meaning and intent are identical.

EU criterion 'a' and US A-5 & A-7 (and to some extent A-1 & A-3), EU 'b' and US A-1 & A-6, EU 'c' and US A-2 & A-7, EU 'd' and US A-5 & A-3, EU 'e' and US A-7, A-3 & A-1, EU 'f' and US A-7 (and to some extent A-2).

Point 2:

B. The individual is at least age 18 years.

This is to distinguish Axis II adult disorders from Axis I childhood onset disorders as well as recognition that the diagnostic criteria for Conduct Disorder are not necessarily indicative of future Antisocial Personality Disorder.

There is nothing magic about it, it comes from both societal norms for adulthood, legal issues surrounding consent for treatment and age-related disgnostic criteria.

Point 3:

C. There is evidence of Conduct Disorder with onset before age 15 years.

Childhood-onset and early Adolescent-onset Conduct Disorder is statisticaly related adult Antisocial Personality Disorder whereas late Adolescent-onset Conduct Disorder is directly diagnostic. There is also the diagnostic criterion that the pattern should be present since age 15.

Again, nothing inconsistent here.

Point 4:

D. The occurrence of antisocial behavior is not exclusively during the course of Schizophrenia or a Manic Episode.

Schizophrenia and mood disorders with Mania are entirely different beasts. These can actually be medically treated whereas Antisocial Personality Disorder can't.

Point 5:

Every example you use to 'illustrate' how everyone shows the symptoms of Antisocial Personality Disorder are both ludicrous and disingenuous. They appear vague only because your examples completely ignore the issue of degree and severity, both qualitative and quantitative.
Joined: 7/20/2006
Msg: 152
characteristics of a sociopath/psychopath
Posted: 3/17/2007 11:30:52 PM

Another couple of things I'd like to say about what you said or the way the thread is turning is "If you try to teach a pig to sing, you only frustrate yourself and irrirtate the pig."

"My mind is made up, don't try to confuse me with facts."

Unforunately psychology is one of those sciences which, unlike math, seems to fall into the class that a few people who read a book or two, or try to "prove" a point by showing that nothing can be "proven" (like in math 2+2=4) or that in psychology there are few absolutes, overlook the point that psychology is a study of the patterns of behavior of various disorders and illnesses along a broad range of hereditary and enviornmental differences. Doesn't mean those patterns aren't there, it just means that those patterns are that, PATTERNS, not absolutes. In every individual with every disease or disorder there are degrees and differences regardless of which disease physical or mental.

Since I have practiced in both medicine and psychology, and my first degree was in family medical practice (which by the way is about 50% psychology) I realize that the mind and body have no dicotomy. They are one.

There are some great web sites on sociopath/psychopath/antisocial personality disorder and some great books, I would recommend Dr. Robert Hare who studied them in prisons for over 25 years and has written well and understandably about this subject. Since we all have to deal with these people at one time or another, and the potential for damage from dealing with them can be grave--physically and emotionally--I would highly recommend that any person educate themselves to the potential problems in dealing with them.

We try to educate our kids and ourselves about possible sexual predators inside and outside the family, and these people are just as dangerous. Sometimes are one in the same. In the 1970s I lived in Lonoke,AR and was accquainted with Jack Walls III who was one of the worst sexual predators who did not killl his victims. Over a 20 year period this man, from a good and prominent family, molested over 1500 young boys, and eventually when one of them "told" he persuaded the young man to kill his parents. Jack also molested his own sisters boys and one of them committed suicide. Jacks father, Charles "Jack" Walls II, was and, unless he has died recently, is, one of the most upstanding and honest men in the world. He was General Patton's legal aid. I never liked Jack III and knew he was an A$$hole , but never for one moment dreamed he was a pedophile. They can be slick. But I wasn't the only one he fooled. I can only imagine how his lovely wife and two children must feel, and what hell she, they and his father went through in a town of 3,500 when all this came out.

My own psychopathic son killed a girl and is in prison, but he didn't do it in the state in which we lived, and all our friends didn't know it. The "victims" of a psychopath are not limited to the people they molest, or kill, their own family also suffers. Even the ones that are not the Charlie Mansons, Ted Bundies, or Jackie Walls III still wound those the closest to them, and make them emotionally bleed. Sometimes for years and years, with wounds that will never heal.
Thanks for your great post joe
Joined: 4/19/2007
Msg: 153
view profile
characteristics of a sociopath/psychopath
Posted: 7/19/2007 8:25:35 AM
1) Seems like a player. Well, I guess that 75% of the world is a psychopath or a sociopath.

So: if a person seems to be good to be true, then they are probably a psychopath or a sociopath.That makes sense. I've met people like that and it fits.

Mind you, all this is very possible. I one saw a film called "The Corporation". It was all about how most businesses are so selfish and money-oriented that they have the same personality as a psychopath.

I guess the same holds true for people.
Joined: 6/20/2005
Msg: 154
view profile
characteristics of a sociopath/psychopath
Posted: 8/1/2007 5:19:11 AM
Kudos to jon and the Muse for covering the most essential elements of what my best girlfriend got free of last year. Forget diagnosing; people need to be educated in order to avoid these predators and unfortunately our society blames the victim rather than to suppport and encourage these people. She's been banned for life since she inadvertantly revealed his sordid, sociopathic true nature. Having met and fell in love with this monster several years ago, he was charming, witty and sweet; very convincing facade. Over time as the violence, backstabbing, control and fits of rage took over in private, she had to make for the exit. It was a psychological war in which she was held hostage, and she also now suffers from Stockholm Syndrome and post traumatic stress disorder. Yes, machiavelli is the model for this evil, as they're always lying and manipulating behind the scenes to destroy those who expose and/or leave them, while pretending to be just as sweet as sugar ar0und people who can advance their goals and status. Families, friends and counsellors need to be supportive and nonjudgmental. My sista has been through years of indescribable hell and this site is one of the few ways that she can get the word out on these monsters and warn other people to protect them from what she'll go through for the rest of her life. If anyone hears of sees things like her profile on here~ooomaadoll, they might want to take what some people say with a grain of salt and bother to find out the truth; she's not the cause, but is trying to cope with the effect, also from other sociopaths like her sister, ex-sponsor and a few more former friends of both genders. Imagine coming back from a 4-year tour of duty and having the very people who are there to lend help and support are blaming the victim. If they want to hear tapes, hear voice mails or read years of emails to know the truth, which most people should know by her character anyway, it's all there for backup proof. Evil does thrive when good men fail to act and this town is a disgrace; find out the facts before you destroy an already mortally wounded soul, as she did nothing but ask for your support. shame 0n all of you.
Joined: 7/20/2006
Msg: 155
characteristics of a sociopath/psychopath
Posted: 8/10/2007 4:28:21 PM
Kitty, you are sooooo right!

Just been through another "war" with my psychopath son--and finally "won"--but like most "winners" in "war"--I've got some terrible wounds, and the cost has been horrible. I will survive, but AT WHAT COST.

My psychopathic son's "puppet" (also professionally diagnosed as Anti-social Personality disorder--the newest name for psychopath) is in jail, on several felony charges stemming from his being a felon in possession of a fire arm, attempted murder with a fire arm, and attempted breaking and entering. Plus, my son C's wife BOUGHT THE GUNS --and she is also in jail with a felony charge as well. Good thing, too.

My psychopathic son P had all this planned out--but K, his "friend" decided to have an affair with son C's wife, and they got caught, so they just decided to hurry things up a bit and kill C before they took off with thousands of dollars they had scammed out of my confused elderly mother. I have been trying for months to get my son C to see what was going on with his brother and his brother's "friend"--but no one believed my "rantings" and "paranoid ravings"--how could "any sane person believe such a stupid story?"--MAYBE BECAUSE IT WAS TRUE???? not a chance!!! They wouldn't even look at the evidence that the private investigator I hired found to prove that K was lying, that he WAS A PEDOPHILE--their "evidence" that they had was "he said it wasn't true." DUH!

Well, now, we are working to get enough evidence to get a "conspiracy to murder" charge against my son who is in prison, and in Texas that is his THIRD STRIKE and he will NEVER GET OUT...and K will go to prison in Arkansas and I think I might be able to get his "sentences stacked" so that they are not "served at the same time" which will make him do more years. But in the meantime, they have our address, so it is move somewhere they can't find us--move from our family's home siince 1833--but at least I am alive to move, my son C is alive and my mom is alive and still has her estate intact.

But our family will never be the same again--my mother will go down to her grave in grief and pain, but the knowledge that her "beloved grandson" did this to us, to her, and that her disbelief almost caused my son C and me to lose our lives---how can that be "fixed"--??

I've spent almost $40,000 in legal fees, private investigators, etc. and wasn't able to accomplish anything, except put them on notice that I was "after them"--but in the end, they brought down their own house of cards with the "affair"---and got caught.

When I showed up at the bail hearing to give an "impact statement" to the judge, the psychopath sat over in his orange jump suit--smirking--not the least ashamed or "sorry" for anything except getting caught. Even if he got caught, he had still "won" because he got the pleasure of making my life miserable, of hurting me, of destroying my son's marriage---

But I did get the bail so high neither of them could make bail, and my DIL did decide to give the money back in exchange for a little "good will" and to sign the divorce papers without contest--and she will most likely get probation. But she will have a felony conviction, and when she does come out of jail, she will have "everything in the world she owns" on her back---so there is some justice in this world. Some vindication for us "victims---and yes, there are plenty of people that deal with these folks that are 100% INNOCENT VICTIMS. They are excellent con-men and can use you like TP and not care.

Vindication does feel nice--but I am not gloating in any sense of the word. I am just glad to be alive and kicking.
Joined: 6/20/2005
Msg: 156
view profile
characteristics of a sociopath/psychopath
Posted: 8/12/2007 7:14:49 PM
hugs) to you oxdrover. it's heartbreaking to read what you've been through; it's just inconceivable and heartbreaking to read. my best friend who's been banned from these forums by her XNP and all of his lies gets a lot of support on some other sites that you've mentioned before. you can't appeal to the conscience of an np as they don't have one, no guilt no heart. however, her lawyer has now got years of his chat archives, complete medical history, emails and the tapes of every conversation they've had for over a year now, to have him arrested. sociopaths are pathological liars, master manipulators and they've got a perverse sense of entitlement/irresponsibility. the only way to hold them accountable and to stop the projection/smear campaign is to get the courts and police involved. narcissists tend to underestimate their prey sometimes and overestimate their own intellect, attractiveness, powers of persuasion, etc. par for the course as you know that they're a legend in their own minds. he became violent by last fall, smashing 2 pc's and her phone outta her hand. good thing there is so much evidence and an endless array of witnessess. it's for his own good as his fits of rage almost killed her while he was driving as well. you're so right that there's no vindication in locking them away. they hurt everyone including themselves and their families, people who loved them most. at least knowledge is power and she'll never be a naive, trusting target again~that was stolen by him. you're an inspiration oxdrover; glad that you're alive and kicking too, kitty
Joined: 7/20/2006
Msg: 157
characteristics of a sociopath/psychopath
Posted: 8/12/2007 7:56:42 PM
Thank you for your kind words, Kitty, I don't know about "inspiration"--I do know that my "little darling" son did underestimate this "tough old bird"--yes, he is arrogant like you can't believe--and he has fooled me in the past--or rather, I LET him fool me, which is in some ways the hardest thing to admit. When you love someone it is difficult to admit that there is NO HOPE for them, and that they are literally a MONSTER.

My son qualifies in the "monster" "Hannibal Lechter" (I'm not sure of the spelling on that). catagory. Back years ago I had worked in head and spinal cord injuries, and then when my beloved step son suffered a massive head injury, I told my husband that I think that that job was "God's way of preparing me to deal with this." The time I spent working in the psych field I also think was God's way of "preparing me for dealing with my son."

Depending on which studies you read, there are from 1 to 4% of the general population that qualifiy as "certifiable" Psychopaths (Narcissists are the "nicest" form of this, but is essentially the same) all Ps are Ns, but not all Ns are Ps--

In prison, 20% of the inmate population are certifiable PPDs--and they do about 75% of the violent and repeat crime. Many people on the outside never get afoul of the law and go to jail or prison, but the wreck lives and leave a wake of emotionaly "bleeding" corpses, financially ruined people, scarred children, wrecked families, and other devestation behind.

Punishment doesn't "work"to help them clean up their act in the least, and therapy (according to a recent study) only gives them a better arsenal of weapons to work with and hones their skills as con men, and emotional fakes. Some of them are quite good at it.

If you are interested in protecting yourself, go to --the psychopath dot freeforums dot org and READ AND LEARN. That is one of the best support sites for survivors of these human vampires that I know of. MSN also has one.

About 99.9% of "abusive" spouses would qualifyt at least on the low end of the scale in these qualities, and your friend's husband qualifies. They can become quite violent when they are thwarted in their goals. It is amazing to me that so many of us "victims" allow ourselves to be abused over and over and over and over, some victims NEVER escape the clutches of these people.

There are a great many "red flags" that are generally apparent when you meet one of these people, but most ignore it and let them get their clutches on you before you even realize it. We try to be "too nice" and just like a wolf seeks out the weakest deer in the herd to focus on, these people can almost "smell" someone who is emotionally needy enough to fall for their BS--not every Jackass is an N or a P, but all Ns and Ps qualify as jackasses for sure.

A friend of mine who just "fell in love" with a guy she met on the internet, saw fairly quickly that this "princecharming" was setting her up for the "emotional kill"--no benefit to him, really, except the satisfaction of another victim on his resume.

I have met several guys on POF and other sites that I would "bet the farm" that qualified, but "picked up on" the RED FLAGS. I didn't however, pick up on those red flags when I started dating one after my husband died because I had "known" him casually for about 10 years. Many times they have a mask of "mr nice guy" to the world at large and only abuse those nearest and dearest to them. Fortunately, I got out of that relationship in only a few months, but if I hadn't eventually realized he was a P, I could have married the man and been in "hell on earth"---

Most people are basicly good people and do the best they can. We all have things that are "baggage" of one sort or another, but the "red flags" of the N and P are the "instant love" and the "too soon too fast" "sweep you off your feet" stuff that should be a red flag. They are a heady "narcotic" and lure you in with "the love affair of the century" but as soon as you are "hooked" they start to fillet you alive and throw you in the hot fire to cook.

I am just sorry that I gave birth to one, but I hope he stays in p rison for the rest of his life and if I can facilitate that, I will.
Joined: 6/20/2005
Msg: 158
view profile
characteristics of a sociopath/psychopath
Posted: 8/16/2007 9:40:36 PM
you are so right on the money regarding all that you've posted oxdrover; clearly having a firm grasp of this evil from both a professional and a personal level. my best friend left her exNPbf last winter and will never go back~not a victim.. i'm staying with her sometimes to help with the nightmares and just to lend support, since most people could never grasp the depraved insanity of "such a nice guy". that is how they hook in their victims initially, faking to care about others, etc. since she left this monster, of course he is stepping up the smear campaign and recruiting loyal followers who are not smart enough to catch on. once she read, studied and talked to some of his ex's, family members and psychiatrists, the puzzle pieces clicked together and she got out. also, this male friend of hers, who helped her move into a supposedly "safe" place and lives a few blocks away w/his girlfriend and their kids, gleefully bragged at full volume in public last winter, that he was an ex-con/diagnosed psychopath as well. at least they're easy to spot now, it's just too bad that they convince everyone that they're the victims, thereby isolating the real victim and simultaneously blowing her entire support network to shreds. they contradict themselves often, have a low i.q. and derive their only pleasure from delierately hurting as many people as possible, with an evil smirk while they doing this. how ironic that people believe such lying, spin doctors no matter how much evidence points to the contrary. hope that you're well and thanks for all the useful input. hugs, kitty
re: the other post about them having abnormal mri's; hopefully this could be forced by the courts once he goes jail, then they will throw away the key, no? perhaps giving a set of tapes of these ppl, including her sister and a few others, along with the other documented/recorded proof to the CMHA, in addition to her lawyer and the police, would land them in penatang, where they must have an mri machine as well. peace
Joined: 7/20/2006
Msg: 159
characteristics of a sociopath/psychopath
Posted: 8/17/2007 8:50:01 PM
Shy Lady, the "terms" for Psychopath/sociopath/anti-social personality disorder are debated and used and changed on a frequent basis even by professionals, so in essence they are THE SAME. A Narcissist is also on the same scale. There is a continuium from "Bad to worse" with narcissist at the "bottom" (least violent usually) up to Psychopath/Sociopath/Anti-social personality disorder. i.e. a 1 to 10 scale.

In any terms, these people leave chaos, havoc and misery in their wakes to one degree or another.

Yes, their brains are HARDWIRED different and there is an 80% correlation to heredity, but probably not just one gene. Dr. Robert Hare studied these folks for his entire career and is one of the top experts on them.

Unfortunately, it is not "PC" to say that there is anyone who is not subject to rehabilitation etc. etc GAG! Unfortunately, a recent study proved that PPD (psychopathic personality disorder) are WORSE and more violent AFTEr therapy--they gain new tools to use against their victims.

Because they do not many tiimes have a "motive" that makes sense to the rest of us, it is difficult for "normal" people to actually see what is happening until they are hooked in deeply with these people. Some motives are apparent, scamming money, but others are more difficult to see--but many times it is nothing more than the "thrill of the chase" to "get away with a con."

They are experts at picking out prey that are vulnerable to their charms and they sense somehow what it is emotionally that the prey "needs" and pretend to fill it, then when the pray is "hooked" the abuse starts--sometimes just for the sake of huring someone or somthing "weaker" than they are. They need constant adoration and have an inflated sense of entitlement and that "rules don't apply to them."

Many times the victim is made to lookk like the scammer, and they ruin body and soul, reputation and sanity of the chosen victim. They do as much as they can to make the victim accept the "blame" for their behavior. A PPD husband may come home, and beat his wife, then apoologize and blame her, "Honey, if you had had supper on the table when you should have, I wouldn't have had to smack you." He was hitting her "for her own good"--GAG YUK--they love to taunt their victims and brag about how sly they are. A pair of them can be beyond belief if they can work together on a scam. In the end, though, if they are caught, they will "roll" on each other because they have NO loyalty to anyone except themselves.

There IS NO HOPE for these people to make them "normal"--to make them see the light. They are unable to feel empathy, or love, but they learn to mimic the emotions in conning their victims. They are NOT all in prison. Reading and learning the RED FLAGS will help, but some are so sly they frequently fool professionals.

The damage they do to humanity and to society are unfathomable.
Joined: 3/19/2008
Msg: 160
characteristics of a sociopath/psychopath
Posted: 3/22/2008 5:26:00 PM
I spent almost 14 years with such a person! It's been a year since the last time we were toghether and I'm still struggling with myself and getting as much information as possible to get rid of all the harm this person caused to myself. He used to be an "functional addicted" and it seems that the use of drugs made him an incredible lovable person, even though he lied about almost everything and I felt like walking on edge most of the time. He kept me hanging on with promises he never kept and used every person in his way. When he entered in Narcotics Anonymous, about 2 or 3 years ago, his true personality emerged and believe me it was really scary. He started a fight for nothing or for the most stupid thing you can't imagine. The shouting was incredible and very out of proportion....
Joined: 4/8/2007
Msg: 161
characteristics of a sociopath/psychopath
Posted: 3/22/2008 6:21:19 PM
There is a book i highly recommend called The Psychopath's Bible. it was written by Dr. Christopher Hyatt.

it has a different take on what society deems as psychotic. i tend to believe his take more. that society has built and formed a nice human that we should all become because of our society being unable to deal with anything else.

but what are humans really wired to be like? i could argue what the altruistic qualities of a human actually are to what people think they should be.
Joined: 6/27/2008
Msg: 162
characteristics of a sociopath/psychopath
Posted: 9/12/2008 9:44:25 PM
I don't know if this has been mentioned but if anyone wants to really understand sociopathy and who prevalent it is in our society they need to read:


I can't remember the author but just google it.
Joined: 7/11/2006
Msg: 163
view profile
characteristics of a sociopath/psychopath
Posted: 9/13/2008 11:42:29 PM

I just read all 13 pages of this thread. I once knew a sociopath - but thankfully was tipped off by his ex-friend (although had suspicions about things he'd done). I didn't really know what a sociopath was so searched online and he did share all the traits - constant lying, using people, borrowing money, appearing charming at first, then showing his irate side when things didn't go well, throwing in stuff to get your pity (which is probably mostly lies), his ex-friend told me he'd stolen money, suffered from addictions and other stuff, etc etc.
I don't think you can diagnose a sociopath just by researching the traits and then comparing them to him. He could just as well be someone who suffers from low self esteem. Which in different sitautions, could just about be everyone alive. (except sociopaths). By the traits you've listed, it appears all children are sociopaths. It's a lot more involved that possessing traits. Even well trained professionals have a hard time diagnosing someone as a true sociopath--someone who possesses no conscience, no remorse, no empathy for his/her victims.

Do sociopaths use absolutely everyone? ie. all of their friends and people they think they can use? Or do they just target specific people and actually be 'nice' to certain close friends? I'm just curious because the one I knew had a couple of friends that he'd been friends with for quite awhile (longer than I'd known him) - and it made me wonder why they hadn't figured him out and stopped being his friend like others had.
This might indicate he does possess what it takes to form lasting relationships. Overall he is a bad dude, but probably not a true sociopath. He acts like a child. More than likely he hasn't emotionally grown up past a certain chronological age. This happens to people. Not everyone comes from a proper nurturing background. Kids learn what they live and carry it into adulthood. Through cognitive therapy it is possible to unlearn life lessons and learn proper behaviour, but the subject really has to acknowledge they are a problem and want to change.

Sounds like your past friend suffers nothing more than stunted emotional growth.
Joined: 6/27/2008
Msg: 164
characteristics of a sociopath/psychopath
Posted: 9/13/2008 11:52:11 PM

Do sociopaths use absolutely everyone? ie. all of their friends and people they think they can use? Or do they just target specific people and actually be 'nice' to certain close friends? I'm just curious because the one I knew had a couple of friends that he'd been friends with for quite a hile (longer than I'd known him) - and it made me wonder why they hadn't figured him out and stopped being his friend like others had. Do sociopaths decide who they want as their 'victim' while showing no sociopathic signs to friends that they don't want to use?

Sociopaths view EVERYONE as objects to be used but whether they are successful is up to the person whom they are relating to. Usually, if a sociopath cannot use you he/she will move on. The friends you are speaking of may allow the sociopath to use them and that is the nature of their relationship. Some people live to "help" others because it gives them a sense of purpose.
Joined: 12/9/2007
Msg: 165
characteristics of a sociopath/psychopath
Posted: 9/14/2008 11:04:23 AM
I think a real sociopath is in part delusional. And may not necessarily be delibrate in their actions. I dated a sociopath that was more negligent in her behavior than what some might typically label as sociopathic behavior. And example would be independency and dependency. She was very independent. And could not understand how her partner could be emotionally dependent on her in the closest sense. Despite what may be assumed she was not delibrate in her actions that may have caused emotional distress. Now I'm not talking about anything criminal here. More so a simple not following through with things that were discussed. For instance. It could be something as little as going out to dinner. But shortly before going she says that she has to get other thing done and we'll go another time. So I would have to say that there are different levels of sociopathy. And some may misinterpret sociopathy with someone who is greedy, calculating, and dishonest.
 Sassy 1
Joined: 1/31/2005
Msg: 166
view profile
characteristics of a sociopath/psychopath
Posted: 9/15/2009 5:14:21 PM
sidheanwwyn is correct ! Psychopath is a Sociopath , just with further, more severe characteristics. I just read up on both of them for my own research.
Joined: 8/10/2009
Msg: 167
characteristics of a sociopath/psychopath
Posted: 9/16/2009 4:43:08 PM
OP...You certainly got them spot on!!! The sad thing is because they are so good at what they do, they even start believing their own lies...these are the ones who always pass lie detector tests
Joined: 2/27/2010
Msg: 168
view profile
characteristics of a sociopath/psychopath
Posted: 5/3/2010 12:37:31 PM
I do know that some people, more than you'd think, (2%?) lack empathy (psychopaths) and it's being researched to see if they were born this way. (probably). It's a tough way to live as these people often feel "different", but it does not have to be "bad". It can often come in handy for heavy situations. (like working as a surgeon in a war torn country). It's only "bad" if these people use it to harm. Psychopaths lack empathy, but can be socialized to understand others feeling and taught how to relate in a healthy social manner. Sociopaths are often psychopaths and they often do not relate to others feelings nor do they care to. In worse case scenarios, they'll use charisma or feign social skills and empathy to hide the fact they have no empathy thus being able to seduce their victims for their own selfish desires. There are also sociopaths who are not psychopaths, they just haven't the skills to relate to others. My opinion, C
Joined: 2/1/2009
Msg: 169
characteristics of a sociopath/psychopath
Posted: 6/2/2010 7:44:21 AM

I do know that some people, more than you'd think, (2%?) lack empathy (psychopaths) and it's being researched to see if they were born this way. (probably). It's a tough way to live as these people often feel "different", but it does not have to be "bad". It can often come in handy for heavy situations. (like working as a surgeon in a war torn country). It's only "bad" if these people use it to harm. Psychopaths lack empathy, but can be socialized to understand others feeling and taught how to relate in a healthy social manner. Sociopaths are often psychopaths and they often do not relate to others feelings nor do they care to. In worse case scenarios, they'll use charisma or feign social skills and empathy to hide the fact they have no empathy thus being able to seduce their victims for their own selfish desires. There are also sociopaths who are not psychopaths, they just haven't the skills to relate to others.

I believe the figure is higher than 2%. Over the years, I have known several individuals that exhibited both psychopathic and sociopathic characteristics. I don't feel these damaged people that show a lack of empathy are born that way---I think it's often the result of some type of trauma they suffered earlier in their lives, either physical or emotional.
Joined: 2/1/2010
Msg: 170
characteristics of a sociopath/psychopath
Posted: 6/26/2010 6:12:09 PM
This is as good a collection as any, encompassing many different sources of diagnostic criteria and description.
 Chivalry is not dead!
Joined: 7/11/2009
Msg: 171
characteristics of a sociopath/psychopath
Posted: 6/30/2010 4:29:13 PM
Please join our new support groups on Face Book and Meet Up websites called:
South Florida Survivors of Sociopaths
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