Genetics, experience and antisocial behavior

Luke Hyde, at the University of Michigan, and colleagues, are researching the contributions of genes, experience and the brain toward antisocial behavior in boys and adolescents.

Bad boys: Research predicts whether boys will grow out of it or not, on


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3 Comments on "Genetics, experience and antisocial behavior"

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Hmmm. Well I think Sandra L Brown has already “mapped” this question.

YES. A resounding yes to this being genetic AND environmental. Personality disorders are the “failure” of the personality to develop normally. I don’t know why we use “sociopath” to describe most of these people. This implies it was “environment” only. It is not.

Sandra L Brown has written a book. “Women Who Love Psychopaths”. I have read it about four times. As I was reading I kept seeing MY life.

Like many mood disorders and personality disorders, how horrific this person behaves is on a spectrum. Make no mistake however that there are “common” traits.

NO empathy, NO conscience, narcissism, lying, manipulation, arrogance, and entitlement to name a few.

Some are HORRIBLE with money and some are not. At any rate, these people are like coyotes. They have binocular vision when it comes to spotting their next victim. It’s what they do for a “living”. Scavenge and enjoy their prey – licking their lips with each successful “kill.”

Despite my efforts to reach out to local DV shelters in my community, we are forbidden to use the “P” word. Personality disorders. It’s seen as the get out of jail card for these perps.

I don’t think so. Neuroscience is behind us on this one. We can point to actual data that supports the lack of conscience in these individuals. Dr Robert Hare has worked with criminal psychopaths for over 30 years. His book “Without Conscience” is bone chilling. Dr Hare even addresses the theory about the men involved in DV to definitely be psychopaths. “Although the causes and dynamics of wife battering are complex and involve myriad economic, social, and psychological factors, there is some evidence that psychopaths constitute a significant proportion of persistent batterers”. “Without Conscience” Dr. Robert Hare page 94.

Remember, without a conscience – all of these individuals have the potential to be “criminals.”

Anti-social personality disorder according to Sandra Brown is less toxic than sociopath or psychopath or malignant narcisist. I went to a one on one retreat with her. I would have to look up my papers, but I think she classified antisocial just before boarderline personality disorder.

These people are not psychopaths, sociaopaths or malignant narcisists; they are terrified and most likely victims as we are:

“In one recent study, for example, Hyde and colleagues studied subjects with over-reactive amygdala responses. The amygdala is an almond-shaped part of the brain’s primitive limbic system involved in processing fear and other visceral emotions. It has been associated with impulsive, aggressive behavior, as well as anxiety disorders and depression.

“Previous research suggests that the amygdala becomes over-reactive probably as a result of both genetics and experience,” Hyde said. “And once the amygdala is over-reactive, people tend to behave in an anxious, over-reactive way to things they see as a potential threat.

“Our study found that this tendency is moderated by a person’s environment, including the social support they get. If they’re not getting support from family, friends, neighbors or professionals, then the link between the amygdala and anxious behavior is much stronger.”

tDoesn’t This sounds more like a victim of a psychopath than an evil creature itself? More from a link on the same website on Anti-social personality disorder:

“Antisocial personality disorder
Psychiatry defines only pathological antisocial behavior; it does not address potential benefits of positive antisocial behavior or define the meaning of ‘social’ in contrast to ‘antisocial'”.

I asked Sandra if she tought I had boarderline personality disorrder because I had quite a few symptoms including a lot of pent up anger from preverbal abuse and marriage to psychopath. said no because people with personality disorders do not normally wonder if they have one and victims often develop coping mechanisms that mimic boarderline She “diagnosed” my father as “antisocial personality disorder and the man I married a “full dip psychopath” and I agree. Sandra knows her stuff!

IMHO, psychopath and sociopath belong in and entirely different category. They are the ones who have no empathy, are dangerous, uncureable and born with the bad gene. The experts have muddied the waters around the definitions to the point that people writing these inaccurate articles are so often now confusing victims with perpetrators. It infuriates me

On the same topic, I read the the book, Almost a Psychopath by some moron. There is no such thing a “almost a psychopath”. There are levels of unacceptable behavior and violence within the category but a psychopath or sociopath or malignent narcisit are all the same kind of creature and there is no “almost” about them. Some hide it better, some are smarter, some kill the soul some murder but they are all intent on destroying to make themselves feel good. They are pure evil.

Borderline, Antisocial, ADHD, etc. are not pychopath in and of themselves. They are often the victims as with PTSD. But recently there is an active movement to blurr the lines. I see it in many of the newer books i.e Alienated Child Syndrome where a mother who protects her child from a psychopath is considered the guilty party. And we all know about the justice system being snowed by the facade of a psychopath.

I believe that the recent headway that has been made in education and getting this out of the closet is being miligned by the, psychopaths themselves, minions and those who do not want to see the evil. We have only advanced from witch burning to blaming the victim and I feel the pendulem swinging back.

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