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  1. #1
    meh Salomé's Avatar
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    Lightbulb Common, everyday psychopaths



    Not every psychopath is an insane muderer. Their insanity is of the moral kind.

    Psychopaths (also known as sociopaths) represent 3-4% of the male population and 1% of the female. That the same proportion as INTPs. (Coincidence? lol)

    That is to say, you’re likely to know as many psychopaths as you do INTPs (if not more, since they don’t spend all their time in libraries and basements ).

    I recently figured out someone I know (who happens to be INTP) is most likely a psychopath/sociopath.

    Think you know someone like this?
    (Information taken from here.)

    HOW TO KNOW
    Ask yourself these questions:
    1. Do you often feel used by the person?
    2. Have you often felt that he (or she) doesn't care about you?
    3. Does he lie and deceive you?
    4. Does he tend to make contradictory statements?
    5. Does he tend to take from you and not give back much?
    6. Does he often appeal to pity? Does he seem to try to make you feel sorry for him?
    7. Does he try to make you feel guilty?
    8. Do you sometimes feel he is taking advantage of your good nature?
    9. Does he seem easily bored and need constant stimulation?
    10. Does he use a lot of flattery? Does he interact with you in a way that makes you feel flattered even if he says nothing overtly complimentary?
    11. Does he make you feel worried? Does he do it obviously or more cleverly and sneakily?
    12. Does he give you the impression you owe him?
    13. Does he chronically fail to take responsibility for harming others? Does he blame everyone and everything but himself?

    If you answered "yes" to many of these, you may be dealing with a sociopath. For sure you're dealing with someone who isn't good for you, whatever you want to call him.
    ]I like Martha Stout's way of detecting sociopaths: "If ... you find yourself often pitying someone who consistently hurts you or other people, and who actively campaigns for your sympathy, the chances are close to one hundred percent that you are dealing with a sociopath."

    Because they go undetected, they wreak havoc on their family, on people they work with, and on anyone who tries to be their friend. A sociopath deceives, takes what he (or she) wants, and hurts people without any remorse. Sociopaths don't feel guilty. They don't feel sorry for what they've done. They go through life taking what they want and giving nothing back. They manipulate and deceive and convincingly lie without the slightest second thought. They leave a path of confusion and upset in their wake.

    Who are these people? Why are they the way they are? Apparently it has little to do with upbringing. Many studies have been done trying to find out what kind of childhood leads to sociopathy. So far, nothing looks likely. They could be from any kind of family. It is partly genetic, and partly mystery.

    But researchers have found that the brains of sociopaths function differently than normal people. And their brains function in a way that makes their emotional life unredeemably shallow. And yet they are capable of mimicking emotions like professional actors.
    Sociopaths don't have normal affection with other people. They don't feel attached to others. They don't feel love. And that is why they don't have a conscience. If you harmed someone, even someone you didn't know, you would feel guilt and remorse. Why? Because you have a natural affinity for other human beings. You know how it feels to suffer, to fear, to feel anguish. You care about others.
    [f you hurt someone you love, the guilt and remorse would be even worse because of your affection for him or her. Take that attachment and affection away and you take away remorse, guilt, and any kind of normal feelings of fairness. That's a sociopath.

    Even when the evidence is staring you in the face, you may have difficulty admitting that someone you know, someone you trusted, even someone you love, is a sociopath. But the sooner you admit it, the faster your life can return to normal. Face the facts and you may save yourself a lot of suffering.

    WHAT DO THEY WANT?
    A sociopath's goal is to win. And he (or she) is willing to do anything at all to win.
    Sociopaths have nothing else to think about, so they can be very clever and conniving. Sociopaths are not busy being concerned with relationships or moral dilemmas or conflicting feelings, so they have much more time to think about clever ways to gain your trust and stab you in the back, and how do it without anyone knowing what's happening.

    One of the questions in the list above was about boredom. This is a real problem for sociopaths and they seem fanatically driven to prevent boredom. The reason it looms so large for them (and seems so strange to us) is that our relationships with people occupy a good amount of our time and attention and interest us intensely. Take that away and all you have is "playing to win" which is rather shallow and empty in comparison. So boredom is a constant problem for sociopaths and they have an incessant urge to keep up a level of stimulation, even negative stimulation (drama, worry, upset, etc.).

    And here I might mention that the research shows sociopaths don't feel emotions the same way normal people do. For example, they don't experience fear as unpleasant. This goes a long way to explaining the inexplicable behavior you'll see in sociopaths. Some feelings that you and I might find intolerable might not bother them at all.

    HOW TO DEAL WITH A SOCIOPATH]There is no known cure or therapy for sociopathy. In fact, some evidence suggests that therapy makes them worse because they use it to learn more about human vulnerabilities they can then exploit. They learn how to manipulate better and they learn better excuses that others will believe. They don't usually seek therapy, unless there is something to gain from it.
    Given all that, there is only one solution for dealing with a sociopath: Get him or her completely out of your life for good. This seems radical, and of course, you want to be fairly sure your diagnosis is correct, but you need to protect yourself from the drain on your time, attention, money, and good attitude. Healing or helping a sociopath is a pointless waste of your life.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ivy View Post
    Gosh, the world looks so small from up here on my high horse of menstruation.

  2. #2
    Superwoman Red Herring's Avatar
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    [YOUTUBE="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u2V0vOFexY4"]Jim Fallon on psychopaths[/YOUTUBE]
    The good life is one inspired by love and guided by knowledge. Neither love without knowledge, nor knowledge without love can produce a good life. - Bertrand Russell
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  3. #3
    Starcrossed Seafarer Aquarelle's Avatar
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    Very interesting information!
    Masquerading as a normal person day after day is exhausting.

    My blog:
    TypeC: Adventures of an Introvert
    Wordpress: http://introvertadventures.wordpress.com/

  4. #4
    Senor Membrane
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    Quote Originally Posted by Salome View Post
    HOW TO KNOW
    Ask yourself these questions:
    1. Do you often feel used by the person?
    2. Have you often felt that he (or she) doesn't care about you?
    3. Does he lie and deceive you?
    4. Does he tend to make contradictory statements?
    5. Does he tend to take from you and not give back much?
    6. Does he often appeal to pity? Does he seem to try to make you feel sorry for him?
    7. Does he try to make you feel guilty?
    8. Do you sometimes feel he is taking advantage of your good nature?
    9. Does he seem easily bored and need constant stimulation?
    10. Does he use a lot of flattery? Does he interact with you in a way that makes you feel flattered even if he says nothing overtly complimentary?
    11. Does he make you feel worried? Does he do it obviously or more cleverly and sneakily?
    12. Does he give you the impression you owe him?
    13. Does he chronically fail to take responsibility for harming others? Does he blame everyone and everything but himself?

    If I answered yes to a couple of these, I'd get rid of the person. I'm picky, yes.

    I've thought about these people, and I think I have even met a couple of them, but I still haven't met anyone clearly evil. Sure, they are not the people I would hang out with, and they are a drag, but I still tend to consider them more "confused" than evil. This makes me feel pretty optimistic about humanity. It might be, of course, that I've never met a psychopath.

  5. #5
    The High Priestess Amargith's Avatar
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    I'd say they just rate emotions differently than we do, based on this information. Boredom is a feeling after all and they seem to go through any lengths to avoid it, to really be stuck with themselves alone, in a space, with nothing to face but themselves. That to them is excruciating according to this information. That means that pain, hurt, fear etc are preferable to boredom and often more easily obtained than real happiness, bliss, trust etc. Takes less effort to create situations with those emotions and allows them to flee that mirror inside. If you never face the mirror, you also can forget what you look like in that mirror and what your actions have brought you...
    ★ڿڰۣ✿ℒoѵℯ✿ڿڰۣ★





    "Harm none, do as ye will”

  6. #6
    darkened dreams labyrinthine's Avatar
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    In experience there seems to be varying degrees of this behavior. Is the diagnosable sociopath an all or nothing trait? What I wonder is if the brain process is different for sociopaths, what is occurring for people who's behavior is something, if not wholly, like this. Are their brain processes similar or is it environmental conditioning, etc. I suspect both things could be involved.

    There is a whole slew of conditions that are related with slight differentiation [sociopathy, psychopathy, borderline personality disorder, narcissicism, etc]. These are all similar in that the individual has an unbalanced sense of self vs. other. I believe narcissism is considered developmental. It has to do with problems in the process of infant separating its identity from its mother during the first stages of life.

    I've encountered people with varying degrees of this sort of issue, although I'm not qualified to know which condition or to what degree. Some show up in the performing arts which I suspect is attractive because it is based on manufacturing emotions and manipulating crowd responses. There is a degree of power associated with that. I've also thought that politics would be attractive for the same reason plus there is actual power involved, and I have wondered about a few specific politicians.

    There are definitely degrees of it from a person who is trying to murder family members to someone who's motivations are more childishly selfish, but still continually draining the resources of those around them. There are a couple of people that come to mind in my own personal networks who have a distorted self problem (I'll leave it with that degree of vagueness). They are connected in a way I'm not in a position to choose to be rid of them, but fortunately I don't have to deal with them daily. When I do, I find it most useful to shift into neutral where I have no feeling of affection towards them, but also not anger. It is a difficult mindset, but I have gotten somewhat positive results from focusing on the non-attachment mode, considering.

    I don't think eliciting pity, even if someone does it often, necessarily indicates sociopathy or one of these similar disorders. This is just my experience, but the pity elicited from individuals with an inflated sense of self has different characteristics:

    1. It tends to feel forceful. It is more of a demand for pity.
    2. The individual directly gains from the person responding in pity - this can be a professional gain, acquiring money, or if more childish just taking direct attention away from someone else.
    3. It also can have context problems - the source of the suffering is not clear. If someone's house burns down and they are sad, it would naturally elicit pity, but the context of why is clear and rational. (chemical imbalances leading to depression could at first appear to have context problems until you include an understanding of the person's physiology - I wanted to specifically differentiate that from the "inflated self" problems.)
    Last edited by labyrinthine; 01-10-2011 at 10:53 AM. Reason: changed "brain structure" to "brain processes"
    Step into my metaphysical room of mirrors.
    Fear of reality creates myopic morality
    So I guess it means there is trouble until the robins come
    (from Blue Velvet)

  7. #7
    meh Salomé's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nolla View Post
    I've thought about these people, and I think I have even met a couple of them, but I still haven't met anyone clearly evil. Sure, they are not the people I would hang out with, and they are a drag, but I still tend to consider them more "confused" than evil. This makes me feel pretty optimistic about humanity. It might be, of course, that I've never met a psychopath.
    You probably have. It's not about being confused. It's about being morally void. I don't think "evil" is a helpful label. It's enough to consider whether the person is a toxic influence or not.

    Quote Originally Posted by Satine View Post
    I'd say they just rate emotions differently than we do
    It's probably impossible to understand the mind of someone who has no conscience if you have one yourself. That's why they can dupe so many people.

    Quote Originally Posted by Annwn View Post
    In experience there seems to be varying degrees of this behavior. Is the diagnosable sociopath an all or nothing trait? What I wonder is if the brain structure is different for sociopaths, what is occurring for people who's behavior is something, if not wholly, like this. Is their brain shaped with less differentiation or is it environmental conditioning, etc. I suspect both things could be involved.

    There is a whole slew of conditions that are related with slight differentiation [sociopathy, psychopathy, borderline personality disorder, narcissicism, etc]. These are all similar in that the individual has an unbalanced sense of self vs. other. I believe narcissism is considered developmental. It has to do with problems in the process of infant separating its identity from its mother during the first stages of life.

    I've encountered people with varying degrees of this sort of issue, although I'm not qualified to know which condition or to what degree. Some show up in the performing arts which I suspect is attractive because it is based on manufacturing emotions and manipulating crowd responses. There is a degree of power associated with that. I've also thought that politics would be attractive for the same reason plus there is actual power involved, and I have wondered about a few specific politicians.
    Yes.
    I found the original article I wanted to link to (which has a test).
    http://www.damninteresting.com/the-unburdened-mind
    The majority of these individuals are not violent criminals; indeed, those that turn to crime are generally considered “unsuccessful psychopaths” due to their failure to blend into society. Those who do succeed can do so spectacularly. For instance, while it may sound like a cynical joke, it’s a fact that psychopaths have a clear advantage in fields such as law, business, and politics. They have higher IQs on average than the general population. They take risks and aren’t fazed by failures. They know how to charm and manipulate. They’re ruthless. It could even be argued that the criteria used by corporations to find effective managers actually select specifically for psychopathic traits: characteristics such as charisma, self-centeredness, confidence, and dominance are highly correlated with the psychopathic personality, yet also highly sought after in potential leaders. It was not until recent years—in the wake of some well-publicized scandals involving corporate psychopaths—that many corporations started to reconsider these promotion policies. After all, psychopaths are interested only in their own gain, and trouble is inevitable when their interests begin to conflict with those of the company. This was the case at Enron, and again at WorldCom—and Sunbeam CEO Al Dunlap, besides doctoring the books and losing his company millions of dollars, would allegedly leave his wife at home without access to food or money for days at a time.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ivy View Post
    Gosh, the world looks so small from up here on my high horse of menstruation.

  8. #8
    Senor Membrane
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    Quote Originally Posted by Salome View Post
    You probably have. It's not about being confused. It's about being morally void. I don't think "evil" is a helpful label. It's enough to consider whether the person is a toxic influence or not.
    Morally void sounds absolute. I'd assume that would be the most extreme case, while there has to be some milder forms of the same behavior. From a certain perspective every bully is basically being a psychopath at the moment they are bullying their victims.

    And, yeah, evil is a big word, but it is nice to have that category in order to see there isn't anyone there.

  9. #9
    meh Salomé's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nolla View Post
    Morally void sounds absolute. I'd assume that would be the most extreme case, while there has to be some milder forms of the same behavior. From a certain perspective every bully is basically being a psychopath at the moment they are bullying their victims.

    And, yeah, evil is a big word, but it is nice to have that category in order to see there isn't anyone there.
    Having a conscience is pretty binary - you either do or you don't.

    I didn't mean to say there aren't people who fit the label of "evil", there are, IMO. And degrees of it too. Just that it's not a very helpful diagnosis. Too subjective.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ivy View Post
    Gosh, the world looks so small from up here on my high horse of menstruation.

  10. #10
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    Funny, I can think of many more females I have known who have displayed the behaviors mentioned in those 13 questions. In fact I must be attracted to sociopaths, or all humans suck.. Guess what I am putting my money on?
    SO I am confused why they all say he (instead of he/she)..
    Typical fear mongering bullshit to feed the feminist agenda.
    Did Oprah write this??

    Have a nice day

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