Archive for February, 2006

Sociopaths troll for victims with online ads

Millions of people use online dating sites to search for the person of their dreams. And millions of people have learned the great lesson of online dating: It’s easy to lie on the Internet.

So now, not only are there dating sites, but there are sites to expose the lying daters. The New York Times featured some of these sites in an article on February 16, 2006, headlined (Name Here) Is a Liar and a Cheat. (Registration required to read the story.)

The article featured sites like DontDateHimGirl.com and Manhaters.com, which, as the Times wrote, “are dedicated to outing bad apples or just identifying people who may not be rotten but whose dating profiles are rife with fiction.”

Oprah and the con man

This past Monday, February 13, The Oprah Winfrey Show aired a story called Casanova Conman. It profiled Eric Cooper of the Houston, Texas area, who allegedly married or became engaged to nine women in 10 years. Five of the women appeared on the show.

Between 1994 and 2004, Cooper married Melissa, Kimberly, April, Paula, another April, Jennifer and Krystal. All the marriages happened quickly, and at least two were allegedly bigamous. He also became engaged to Brandy and Tonya. He has three daughters, and a child on the way, all with different women.

He or she is a sociopath–now what?

Before you figure out that you’re involved with a sociopath, your dominant state of mind in the relationship is confusion.

There are times when he (or she) is the most charming person on Earth. But he has been lying to you for so long that you don’t know what is true and what is false. One day he says the two of you are soul mates, the next day he beats you. You’re walking around on eggshells, never sure when a minor issue will send him into a rage.

Psycho movies add to the confusion

In the 2004 movie Taking Lives, Angelina Jolie stars as an FBI profiler sent to Quebec, Canada to help solve a grisly murder. Shortly after she arrives there’s another murder—and a suspect.

Jolie interviews the suspect. Afterwards, she says to the Canadian investigators, “Psychopaths actually have very different brain patterns. You say words like tree, sofa, house, rape, incest, murder. A normal person’s brain pattern changes; the frontal lobe reacts. Psychopaths have no reaction. They feel the same about rape and murder as they do about eating dinner. They have no emotional reaction.”

Jolie’s character is right. Everything she says has been validated by scientific research.

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