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Medication used to treat sociopathy/psychopathy

It turns out that Sandy Brown, M.A. is quite correct in stating that any talk of treatment of sociopathy makes people (particularly women) reluctant to give up on a dangerous relationship. We received a note this week from a woman asking for more info about treatment and wanting to know if there was any hope for her man. He was the only man she had ever loved and she was actually still grappling with the meaning of his diagnosis.

This week, I will discuss medications that can be used to treat sociopathy. But before I do I want to make it clear that I encourage people to break away from sociopaths. Remember that the sociopath’s doctor and therapist will want you to stay with the sociopath to assist in the treatment. Sociopaths “do better” with treatment and when they stay married. So let me explain what “do better” means. Also this discussion will help you if you are still grappling with the meaning of your sociopath’s diagnosis.

One of the ways to assess sociopathy is with the Psychopathy Check List-Revised, developed by Dr. Robert Hare (PCL-R). The PCL-R is a 20 item psychological evaluation that professionals with training complete on a person using an interview and a review of criminal/ psychiatric records. When someone scores above 30 on the PCL-R that person is “a psychopath.” Most people who psychiatrists would consider “sociopaths” score above 20 on the PCL-R.

Researchers have used the PCL-R to evaluate large numbers of people. They have found that some items of the 20 item test are correlated with each other. That means that say a person who scores high on item 1 is also likely to score high on items 2, 4, 5, but not necessarily item 20. On the basis of these item correlations, researchers have grouped the items into two “factors” each having two “facets.” I will use these factors and facets to discuss with you what aspects may respond to medication. Two items of the PCL-R do not belong to either Factor 1 or 2. These are Item 11, Sexual Promiscuity and Item 17, Many short term marital relationships. These items stay part of the PCL-R because they are so integral to psychopathy as you already know!

Factor 1
Interpersonal/Affective

Factor 2
Lifestyle/Criminality

Facet 1 Interpersonal Symptoms

Facet 3 Lifestyle

1. Glibness/superficial charm

2. Grandiose sense of self worth

4. Pathological Lying

5. Conning/manipulative

3. Need for Stimulation

9. Parasitic Lifestyle

13. Lack of realistic long term goals

14. Impulsivity

15. Irresponsible Behavior

Facet 2 Affective (emotional) symptoms

Facet 4 Criminal Behavior

6. Lack of Remorse/Guilt

7. Shallow Affect

8. Callous/Lack of Empathy

16. Failure to accept responsibility for actions

10. Poor behavior controls

12. Early Behavior Problems

18. Juvenile Delinquency

19. Revocation of conditional release

20. Criminal versatility

Look at the Table above and consider that you are interested in the two items that are not part of either factor and Factor 1. These are the symptoms that are most concerning to family members. The criminal justice system and professionals are most interested in Factor 2.

Look at the list again and imagine a person with a great deal of energy either because he or she is manic or because he or she is on speed. In that case Items 1, 2, 5, 3, 13, 14, 15, 10, 19, 20 and 11 would be most affected. In fact this is why there is overlap between bipolar disorder and psychopathy.

Anything that increases a sociopath’s energy level makes him or her worse. Anything that reduces his or her drive leads to “improvement.” That is why, medications for mania like lithium, anticonvulsants and antipsychotic drugs have been used “successfully” to treat sociopathy. In this case success is defined in terms of fewer arrests and aggressive acts.

Also look at the list and notice that Items 3, 14 , 15, 10, 19 and 11 are related to poor impulse control. These symptoms may respond to antidepressants that work on the serotonin system. Defects in the serotonin system are thought to underlie impulsivity. The problem is that many people become manic when they take antidepressants so these can also make a sociopath worse.

Okay, now see what was left off the list, and you will conclude with me that medication will not turn your sociopath into someone you want to spend your life with. Many people say that the sociopath’s energy and spontaneity are what they find attractive. If that is the case for you, then medication which reduces a sociopath’s energy level will make him or her less attractive to you. All the “fun” part of the sociopath may disappear, leaving you with a boring parasite.

Nothing will make a sociopath loving and empathetic or build a conscience. A loving person takes care of his/her family, is trustworthy and doesn’t lie. Medication cannot make a person loving; it can only reduce dangerousness. Focus on the use of the term reduce, as I did not say eliminate dangerousness. In a hypothetical research study, a 50% reduction in the battering of family members and a 50% reduction in arrests would be considered “improvement.” That does not mean sociopaths are turned into people you want to share your life with.

So why do I even discuss treatment? Only to keep you informed and for those who for whatever reason choose to share life with a sociopath.

Next week psychotherapy for sociopathy.


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173 Comments on "Medication used to treat sociopathy/psychopathy"

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I find these studies interesting abstracty–BUT again…I do not know why these posting are here. Men and women just leaving and still entrenched with psychos do not need any tips on helping psychos.

In this pst it states psychos do better when they remain married…most women and men want a reason to hang on…and this gives it to them.
Yes, with drugs psycho are dull conscienceless lumps….but “theire there” and t”their mine” that’s the way a victim’s mind works.

I would really reconsider posting these scientific findings.

VERY interesting. Thank you so much for this. It’s a good reminder, one to read again and again. I just wish this list, factor 1, didn’t call to mind most politicians so strongly. “A loving person takes care of his/her family”–makes me think of how, when John McCain’s first wife was in a horrible car accident, he threw her over and took up with a much younger heiress. And let’s not even discuss Elliot Spitzer.

The hardest thing is giving up that hope. Yesterday I met with my one therapist who has never met or seen my husband (my other therapist has; so I don’t have to convince her that we were, or appeared to be anyway, as she put it, “a great couple”).

Anyway, the therapist yesterday, having heard over the past year the entire horror story of what my husband has done, and never having experienced or witnessed in any way his “love” herself, has apparently had a hard time understanding why I can’t just get on with my life and why I’m having a hard time letting the S go. I told her how my other therapist has had me working, via imagery, on letting the S go (taking the hook out of my heart) and how, in that process, I realized I did not want–and/or was not quite ready–to let go of him completely.

When I told her this, the therapist yesterday just looked at me quizzically and said, “Why *wouldn’t* you want to let him go?” (because to her this solution seems obvious).

Tears came to my eyes and as much as I hated to admit it, I said, “Because I don’t want to lose that connection; I loved him; I completely believed in this man.”

And I think she finally realized how much I did love him. Although to her he sounds completely unlovable, to me, the deception was complete and the memory is so vivid of how much I loved him and how much I believed he loved me.

It’s like looking at a photograph, or thinking back on any memory for that matter. No matter how many years go by, some memories are so intense, it’s as if you can reach out and touch them. Part of you asks, “Did this really happen? Was there really a time?” but another part of you can practically step right into the memory.

And I think that’s why it is hard. So painful. To lose someone you love and who is still alive is so difficult. The one we love don’t want us, we want what we had, we can’t have it, we want it, it is real, it seemed real, we can reach out and touch it is so real and we are so astonished that anyone could deceive us so cruelly–was none of it real?–just so they could pursue their evil, selfish desires.

And no amount of calming medication or serotonin adjustment will negate that dark place that exists within the sociopath. Hard as it is to let go, and I’m still hanging on to my S by a few slender threads, it is our only hope. Then we can move forward, toward love and light, acknowledging the pain and grieving are as real and piercing as if we lost our loved one to death.

correction: “the one we love DOESN’T want us,”

i would have just let it be, but it sounded so awful with “don’t”

My personal opinion is that to be in any higher level political position the person would almost have to be a Narcissist of at least a lower level, but a psychopath who had plenty of charm (when they wanted to use it) like Elliot Spritzer are those that advance to “higher” places in politics.

Dr. Leedom also pointed out in a previous post that people with “power” even if they weren’t Ns or Ps to start with sometimes start to act like Ns or Ps.

I am totally in agreement that “success” in treatment of Ps doesn’t produce a “viable human with a conscience” but only a “less dangerous P” and while that may be a benefit to society in keeping them out of prison it certainly wouldn’t make them an “ideal family member” by any stretch of the imagination.

My previous husband was mentally ill, and I would have stayed with him in spite of that because he was not abusive to me, because I loved him. I didn’t have the choice as he left me. Just as if he had been injured in a car wreck and left paralyzed I would have stayed with him. I would have continued to love him.

Psychopathic abuse, and I don’t know of any that aren’t abusers in one form or another to those that are “nearest and dearest” to them, is another ball of string. There comes a point that no matter how much you love a person and how much you would “sacrifice” your own needs for that person, that the “price” is “too high to pay.”

I loved my P-son as much as any mother could love her own child, but when it finally became clear to me that my son was a psychopath, that nothing I could do for him would change that, and if I kept interfacing with him that it would lead to my own death, I had to quit risking my own life and sanity in order to live, much less live a good and healthy life.

I had held on to the MALIGNANT HOPE that he could at least “go straight” when he got out, that the words he had said might actually be true, that he had gained some insight into his behavior, etc etc. all delusions on my part because I wanted so badly for them to be true. When I quit listening to his WORDS and started observing his ACTIONS I saw the truth.

The Trojan Horse psychopath was also bi-polar and the bi-polar treatment helped stabilize his behavior enough that he could “function” in a social setting, it did nothing for his impulse control or his evil intentions to get what he wanted at any price. Incarceration is no deterrent to their grandiose dreams of “the big score” it is only viewed as a temporary set back, an inconvenience. They still view themselves as “successes” and only temporarily inconvenienced by the betrayal of others.

If more states would enact laws, in my opinions, with the “three (felony) strikes and you are out” laws, so that these habitual criminals (mostly all Ps) are incarcerated for life without parole, at least the streets would be safer for the rest of us. I think something like 70% of the violent crime is committed by the 20% of criminals who are scored 30 on the PCL-R. The people who just “score high” but don’t go over 30 I would estimate cause a tremendous amount of other kinds of damage in society as well. Maybe the 3-strikes laws would catch an incarcerate a few of them as well.

While I would like to see medicine find a treatment that worked, and would like to see research continue, I think in the meantime, the criminal justice system is the best avenue we have to get the really dangerous ones like my son and the Trojan Horse P off the street and keep them off the street.

In the meantime, it behooves the rest of us to protect ourselves from the less violent, but still disruptive and harmful ones that are still out there, by learning about the red flags, disseminating this knowledge as broadly as possible, and work on healing our own wounds.

Thank you Dr. Leedom for another great piece of information to add to the arsenal.

excellent points…i wonder if we took the dollars out of politicking and hence the attractiveness to the n/p s/ of the world we might provide/return to a more conscious America….yes i am aware that many of our forefather leaders may have been as well…..but it seems today that we have more of an acceptance of this than in “the olden days”

yes i have lost my best friend because power can corrupt and make n/p/s type behavior out of someone who doesnt stay humble in view of newfound power……and i hired her for the power role because i felt she wouldnt let it run away with her….oh well many other variable at play here as well…..guess the environment helped to nurture her

i also feel that current treatment cant make them more human…just less inhumane

gillian:
“And no amount of calming medication or serotonin adjustment will negate that dark place that exists within the sociopath”

no kiddint, it wont fix them or us……what a bummer….if only……

i understand this post was in answer to anothers quest for info….i also understand the posters DO NOT advocate staying with such a disordered person

such a bummer on such a beautiful saturday that i am finding solace in such information…………..i wish i was snorkeling ciao for now

HolyWaterSalt,

With all due respect to Dr. Leedom, I am with you on your opinion. I think these posts are dangerous for people that are “just out.”

People only hear what they want to hear. Somewhere out there is a person who is thinking maybe they could stay with the Sociopath if he was just a little less abusive.

It seems we were all posting almost at the same time, I was composing my post (after the first post) and when I happened to go back I see that several came in “ahead” of mine which I thought was the second. Some good points in those that I hadn’t read when I posted mine.

It IS I think worse to love a loved one to psychopathic behavior than to death. In Death you know that they didn’t “purposely” quit loving you and die, and you know it is FINAL, that no amount of wanting, or doing anything else will revive them, bring them back to life and you go through the grief process and heal. You get to where you can think about the good times, and not dwell on their loss. I know that even with the terrible, sudden and horrible way I lost my husband, I think it was easier than the way I “lost” my son. I KNEW FOR A FACT my husband LOVED me. I knew for a FACT finally at least, that my son DID NOT ONLY NOT LOVE ME, HE HATED ME, he WANTED ME DEAD so he could have what I had worked for and he felt he deserved to have.

Wow! What a difference in the RESPONSES to my love. One person I lost had loved me back, and one person I lost had wanted to kill me.

I have watched throughout my career families with their loved on on a ventilator, being artifically maintained in that space between “life” and “death” and holding on to malignant hope that by some miracle their loved one will LIVE AGAIN. Will wake up and love them back. I have seen the grief that those families experienced, hoping against hope that some miracle will bring their loved one back to them.

I don’t know exactly how they must have felt, but I think I have some idea because while my psychopathic son was not on a MACHINE holding him between life and death, I was using delusion, my delusion, to keep on hoping that something, some miracle, some act of God, some prayer would be answered and the lovely boy that I loved, had nurtured would reappear in the body of this MAN that I didn’t know. This stranger. This man who could “talk repentence”—but I finally saw, that without a doubt the “boy” I loved would not return to the body of the “man” who was so EVIL.

NO CONTACT was my way of “pulling the plug” on the loved one that I knew was NO MORE, was NOT INSIDE that Body on “emotional life support” that I had kept on maintaining at great cost to myself, just as those families at the hospital kept on hoping against hope that their loved one, long brain dead, would wake up and return to them.

I rememeber the day my husband died, when I got to the hospital where they had taken him, I knew he could not live, but yet the physician there held out HOPE TO ME. I remember being so ANGRY at that physician for holding out a hope to me that I KNEW WAS UNREALISTIC, and I kept thinking, what if I didn’t KNOW the truth, how would I have suffered more because the physician didn’t have the courtesy or guts, or compassion to be “straight forward” and say to me “Your husband is too badly burned to live, but we will keep him comfortable, I am so sorry.”

I asked the doctor “Why are you transferring him 200 miles to another burn center?” He looked at me like I was crazy and said “Because it is the best burn center in the nation” and I said again “WHY? He’s too badly burned to live, I am an APN,I was there at the crash. He inhaled the flames he can’t live with third degree burns over his entire body”

All my career it seems that I fought against phsyicians who held out unreasonable HOPE to patients, which increased the suffering of both family and patient in HOPELESS situations, and this man holding out “hope” to me when there was none to this day makes me angry. But not for myself, as I was at least informed, but for the patients and families he will treat in the future.

Yet, I had done the same thing as that physician, holding out HOPE TO MYSELF over my son. Maybe it is myself I am angry at over this malignant hope, this delusional hope that I too held out.

One of our “family jokes” is the ELEVENTH COMMANDMENT, you know, just like the other ten commandments given by God, but violated more often and with worse results–

“Thou shalt not fool thy self.”

I think I have violated the “eleventh commandment” as much as anyone, and more frequently. Realizing this and stopping my “sinning” in this aspect has been difficult for me.

I had no problem in recognizing that my husband was going to die, and that there was nothing I could do to prevent it. I didn’t accept the physician’s unrealistic offer of “treatment” for something that there was NO treatment for except to keep the patient comfortable and to let God heal them with death. But I did keep up my OWN malignant optimisim and my mantra “where there’s life there’s hope” which is NOT TRUE. There is no more chance for my son, though his body is breathing, to come back to me “whole” (with a conscience) than there was for my husband to get up off the gurney and run into my arms.

But because we don’t have a “ritual” like a memorial service for those that are “lost” but not dead—unless it happens to be a divorce–maybe that is a ritual for their loss—but not having a “ceremony” that marks the total loss may be one of the things that keeps it gnawing at our hearts.

I did my own little “memorial service” for my P-son, the chld that I loved, and laid him to rest, covered the memory with the soil. The MAN that is inside what used to be the body of my little boy is a stranger to me. Just like I had “donated” the organs to someone else after my son died. The heart beating inside another’s body, or the kidney, or the lungs, they are NOT the chld I loved, only pieces of tissue. And if I had literally donated his organs, the person who had his heart might not be a good person, or the person who got his eyes might not be a nice person, etc. so just the “tissue” being there would not make those people my “son”—any more than a “total body” donation, as in this case makes that criminal, that EVIL psychopath “my son.” My son is dead. The relationship is dead. I can’t bring back my husband, I can’t bring back the little boy, but I CAN MOVE FORWARD with the rest of my life.

I think this is another brilliant piece of information – you can’t miss the message if you read it all.

I suppose the problem is that the people who are ‘just out’ might not read every posting and so the title of this might convince them more if it was ‘Why Treatment Doesn’t Make the Sociopath a Better Partner.’ (Though I must say that when I was ‘just out’ I read EVERY inch of EVERY posting EVERYWHERE!)

All I know is that I found this bit:

‘Many people say that the sociopath’s energy and spontaneity are what they find attractive. If that is the case for you, then medication which reduces a sociopath’s energy level will make him or her less attractive to you. All the “fun” part of the sociopath may disappear, leaving you with a boring parasite.’

…really illustrative.

I’m still at the stage (though well past my own sociopath) where I find this whole subject massively interesting and this has answered a question I’ve wondered about for some time.

This also makes me think of why my sociopathic ex blamed Prozac for his terrible behaviour – it DID just ‘enhance’ factors 3, 14 , 15, 10, 19 (poor impulse control). When he wasn’t on it he was slightly better at concealing his true nature. Which to him will have been the important bit – the bit that stopped things unravelling for him.

Someone was saying.. I think it was Wini.. that the only hope for a real sociopath is with God. I think this is true to an extent. IF, and it’s a big IF, the person really turns to God and fights his old natural inclinations, I think he or she could change. But too many times they end up just using the church and new group of friends as yet another support system for their abusive ways.

EnnLondon,

I guess I agree with boths sides. You can’t miss the message if you read the whole thing yet people look for the message they want to hear.

Currently, I am reading The Art of Seduction by Robert Greene. I don’t remember if it was reviewed here but it has been recommended several times. I finally picked it up and though it is written more as a manual on how to seduce someone, psychologically, rather than as a book about psychopaths and sociopaths, it is still a great tool for understanding ourselves and how we got sucked down the black hole.

There is a section describing different kinds of victims as well and I surely see myself described there for sure.

Anyway, the above article will not induce any false hope for me as I am too far down the road. I hope that no one will “read” between the lines a message that is not there… which is… hey.. maybe I can get help for my S and then he will be the nice guy he promises he is… NOT NOT NOT!

:o)

The xs fits 19 of the 20. The only anomoly is #17- many short marital relationships… we were together/married for 7 and his previous marriage lasted about 7yrs. Of course only the WIFE half recognized the marriage either time… and I understand he was engaged a few times between when I threw him out and when we became divorced/he went to prison. He of course, had many gf’s and perhaps even fiancee’s during our marriage… so maybe the many short marital relationships does apply, just not in the traditional sense?

I think there is one drug that could “fix” the xs: sodium pentobarbital. But it’s probably not terribly charitable of me to suggest it. 😉

In the beginning I was in a mode to understand and ‘help.” If he knew…

maybe… he’d change. Getting over their lies, the disbelief and accepting that “unreality” is reality with a psychopath is monumental. I have a background in research and I had read this sort of stuff before….and unless you can give them a heart, sort of like the lesson from Wizard of Oz,
they don’t change.

This “therapy” only works if they are institutionalized and/or enjoy the drugs, if they don’t like the drugs ..forget it. And my God, why should any of us care? Really? This doesn’t change them, and is not in our domain at all…this stuff is for mental institutions and correctional facilities.

Life is so much more than a relationship with a psychopath in a stupor.
Lib….I hope you go NO Contact. You need to be thinking about you- really, your life is in danger.

Lib-

The goal is no contact …meaning email, text mess. , phone, in-person or through other people , some call that contact via proxy.

And I suspect if you do got no contact, one day you will not want any mementos, and that will be a very good day.

So what are doing to get yourself out of this abusive relationship?

Dr. Leedom and All:

I am not even “out ” yet and I have found this very interesting and helpful. I knew “my” S was a player when I met him, a year before I became intimate with him. Six months into that, I knew something was not right with the guy I had fell for and through my own research discovered he was an S. Knowledge is power and the more we have, no matter how it pulls on our emotions, is good for the long haul. As EnnLondon stated, this blog was really illustrative. It made me wonder what “my” S would be like if he were drugged. I fell in love with some of these sociopathic traits.

“My” S. knows something is wrong with him and wants his life to be different. I don’t beleive his ego and/or anger would ever accept the fact that he could be a N/S/P though. So… I really look forwrd to the next blog by Dr. Leedom.

Gillian:

Does NC mean losing all connection? You loved your husband very much, and as you stated about the photographs, being intense memorys you can almost touch, why do you have to get rid of all “emotional” connections. I may be totally wrong, but at this point for me, I want to move myself from the S, get back to who I was when I was healthy, but I don’t feel the need to get rid of all connection. I never want to forget this experience, because I never want to find myself in this place again.

I will have no contact.

I don’t beleive my life is in danger. My heart aches, my home and children have been neglected, but my children and I will be okay eventually.

I have kept mementos of good and bad in my life. It is all part of my life.

I had NC for aprox. three months last fall and then answered one of his calls and blew it. I know that I have to go longer or forever. I have shed no tears this time, I know that he will not change, I know I want a mutually loving, caring, partner. This is what I am doing for now.

Lib,

I want to get rid of all emotional connection to my S because I think he is evil, and I don’t want to have any evil in my life.

The more I let go of him, the freer I feel. I do not want his negative energy infecting my life anymore. He appeared to be a wonderful man, but he was not, and I grieve for the loss of that illusion. I hate like crazy that it was only an illusion, but it was, and that’s all it ever could be. He’s tried to convince me he wants to change, he has changed, he is changing (he recently told me he’s had a “white light” experience), but that’s all part of the illusion too. It’s ALL manipulation.

That’s not to say that I’ll ever forget him. How could I? However I do look forward to a time when I no longer wonder where he is, who he is with, or what he is doing. When I no longer wonder because I no longer care.

My first husband I will never stop wondering what he is up to. He’s the really dangerous kind of S, and like a rattlesnake, I want to keep half an eye on him to make sure he’s not sneaking into my garage or something. But I did go NC for my own sanity, even though I’ve given up 12 years of child support.

This is not always possible, though, if you have kids. The important thing is not to let him worm his way back into your life, your wallet, your self-esteem, etc.

I haven’t posted a comment in a long time. I’ve been trying to just live my life. I’ve been doing well, but i found out yesterday my ex and the girlfriend moved to my small town. I haven’t had to worry about running into them because they were out of state at first, then 3 months ago they moved an hour away, and now 5 minutes away. My son came home yesterday from his visit with his dad and asked if I was sitting down. He told him he moved last week.(could be longer the last med. bill I sent was returned)

Everything is coming back. All the pain , just everything. My son recently called him on some lies he told him and then my ex called my cell 12 times in a row. I did not answer. It bothered me while my phone was ringing, but the next day I was ok. I’ve been getting stronger.

I keep asking myself, why? I know the answer-he’s a sociopath. His answer will be he wants to be by his son. (so far he saw him more when he lived out of state) But, why not live in the next town where they would be going to a different grocery store, a different movie store, a different everything. Why? I don’t know why it keeps going through my head. I know the answer. I have to stop writing. I haven’t felt like this in months.

I’m in the process of finding a lawyer to take him to court for enforcement issues so he’s going to be even more upset with me in the near future.

If anyone has suggestions how to handle running into them, please share them with me.

Dear Tryingtorecover. Welcome back, I do remember you from some time back and glad to hear that things have been well for you. I live in a smallish town too and had the same problem, although we do not have a child together. At first I tried to regulate when I went into town, avoiding times when he might not be at work or just going to certain parts of town. In the end, i couldnt keep track of his working rota and I thought I cant pussy foot around him and give him that power. So I just go about my business as though he doesnt exist. I have seen him and was extremely near to him, but now I just ignore him and he ignores me and that is fine.

Problem is, when your son is visiting, he is sure to be a conduit for information either way. Presumably, if he has a girlfriend he will not be causing you emotional upheavel – so, is it the embarrassment of seeing him with his girlfriend?.

Gillian:

I guess what I meant when I said I don’t want to get rid of all emotional connection is that I don’t want to feel this way again, but I don’t want to forget how it feels. I too really look forward to the time when I am not wondering where he is and who he is with. I do want to be free of him and his negative energy.

Gillian I hear ya loud and clear about the emotional connection and negative energy. Anything and everything that triggered a reaction in me, I got rid of, I even dug up the lillies he helped me plant. He collected wind chimes, they are now in the bottom of the lake. All I have left is his cat. I can’t throw her away, I love animal’s but I so wish I could find the cat a good home. Like you I will never forget him. And I look forward to not thinking about him or wondering if he will show up. I seriously doubt I will ever see him again. I am not bitter or angry, but just still a little crazy about the illusion thing. And I can say his memory is fading, ever so slowly.

Wow Henry, even the cat?

I am not near the point that I can throw anything into the lake. Well, he has never given me much to throw away. What I hold onto now is a list of his contacts from an old phone and email address.

Lib.. Throw that phone in the lake. It has negative energy that is holding on to you. 🙂

Hiya Dear Henry. How you doing? I got rid of nearly everything, even the pillows he put his head on. I have one photo left and a piece of electrical equipment. It also took a while for that ‘toxic feeling’ to leave my house.

Hi Beverly I am doing good, thank you. I have heard of (Sharman’s) not sure if i spelled it right. But they come to your home and light ensence and walk through your house and cleanse it of bad karma and negative energy left by evil people. Have you ever heard of this? Good to see you Bev

Yes, Henry, I do know about it, I did a course on it myself – I did a course on space clearing. Mainly his toxic essence was in my hall, but opening the windows clears the energy too.

Beverly, thanks for responding. The girlfriend is the same one he cheated with. The thought of seeing them together just brings back everything. I thought I had come through most of the pain , but here it is again. I guess I would already have dealt with it if I hadn’t moved home one month after he moved out. My son has also not re-met the gf and does not want to.( we both met her once when we ran into her in a parking lot and my ex pretended not to even remember her first name when he introduced us to her -I so bought the just friends thing) His dad has tried to trick him a couple of times into meeting her, so I think him moving into town is partially to force that issue. I don’t know anymore I just want to be done with it, but that’s not happening.

Dear Tryingtorecover. Yes it is very difficult when they live in the same proximity, its like having to be reminded of the pain constantly. I have even tried putting my place for sale in order to move to another part of the UK, which is not to get away from him, as I had planned to do that, but that is an element of it. But we have done nothing wrong, why should we feel like an outcast in our own communities. This is one of the unpleasant issues that we dont realise will come up, when breaking up with someone with PDs. I am determined to keep my dignity, no matter what he has said to people that we mutually knew in local bars, I know what the real truth is.

Having been a t one time a professional photographer, I have tons of photographs–lots framed and on the walls, sitting on desks, etc. I went through them and took out all the ones that reminded me of my P-son after abot 10 or 12 years old, all the teenaged years, etc. when he was so negative.

I took all the beautiful photographs I had taken of my mother and put them away. I took most of the ones of X-BF and did the same though there are a couple of them which were taken on a vacation where he was in a group shot I kept because I wanted the other people’s photos in the group.

I put letters and cards either away in boxes in deep storage or threw them away. I actually kept the huge boxes of 20 years of letters from my P-son, but they are in storage. I haven’t reread any of them except the most recent and they are also in storage now too.

I gave away certain gifts that my mother had given me to people who would appreciate them. My mom was after her retirement one of the award winning quilters here in our state, and had won many best of STATE SHOWS, and she had given me quilts from those, and I gave them away because Id didn’t want them any more to remind me of her every time I went to bed.

My whole farm had a misma of sorts seeming to hang over it like a black pall for a while, when the Trojan Horse P was here, but since his arrest a year ago and since I have been home that seems to have lessened and the feeling of comfort from this place is coming back.

No, you never “forget” but for me, reminders of them don’t do anything to make me feel “better” so I just get rid of them or put them away where I will not have to see them daily or even weekly.

I can understand Henry digging up the lilies.

As far as “running into” them in town, the only time I have “run into” the Ps was years and years ago I ran into my biological father on the street, and I shook for days. Then a few months ago I ran into the X-BF unexpectedly in MY territory (400 miles from his home) when I went to the local auction on Saturday night that I frequently go to, and lo and behold! He was there! The last place in the world I expected to see him. It unnerved me I think more because it was so unexpected–I cut him the cold shoulder and didn’t respond when he tried to “be friendly”—I had run into him once before at a living history event, but I had expected to see him there and it didn’t upset me. I think the “suprise” part was the worst of the “bumping into” them.

In the future, I think should I run into any of them I will not be so bothered or suprised. Sooner or later I will probably run into my mother in a store somewhere, but if it happens I will just “nod” and move on. Not make a nasty public scene, but not stand and chat for sure.

Tryingtorecover, I am sorry for both you and your son that your X has moved back to your town, but I think you should be proud of your son for calling your X on the lies. It shows to me that your son is not falling under the “spell” of the FOG put off by his father. Good for you for not answering the telephone too. You are a strong woman and have taken back your POWER. You are not letting the P control you, and you know I thinkk that is the WORST punishment that we can inflict on them, it makes them furious that they can’t get a response out of us. The letters and calls to others that my P son has made over the last year since he is not getting either money or letters from us show that my son is actually SUFFERING from the frustration of not being able to con us, not to get a response. He is like a roast on a spit, turning over the fire of NO CONTACT, and the heat is cooking his backside. LOL You know that isn’t a great deal of satisfaction but it is something that “money can’t buy” it is JUSTICE. It is the only way we can “inflict pain” on them. The pain they experience when they have NO CONTROL over us. I think that is the worst “emotional pain” that they can have.

Congratulations! Tryingtorecover! You and your son scored a direct hit!

Beverly, my biggest fear I think about running into them is not keeping my dignity. Either turning white and going the other way or starting to cry and seeing his smug satisfaction. I just got off the phone with a friend and she said to walk right up to them and shake her hand and thank her because my life is so much better now. She said just watch their chins drop. It’s a nice fantasy, but i don’t think I could pull that off – at least not yet. I also was going to go to the grocery store when they should be at work, but I have come so far in taking back my life that i can’t do that. I stopped there today and it felt good.

Thanks Oxdrover and I truly love all your analogies.(roast on a spit) I am very proud of my son. Thank you for putting it the way you did about the spell and fog. It helps. I know my son is aware, but I always have a fear he’ll get sucked in. Hearing it that way – I know my son is not in the fog now and I can’t see him ever being in the fog. I did not raise him like that, for the most part. I did smooth things over with his dad in the past before I found out the truth. I told him his dad was truly sorry about something when my “smarter than me son” didn’t believe him. I was raised to be in the fog and when I tried to break out of it as a kid my mom blamed me. Even when I was engaged to my ex and I emerged from the fog on one occasion my mom defended him and gave me a lecture in front of him. He had “worked late” again and you know you have to be understanding when a guy is working so hard to put food on the table. I agree if he’s really working. I couldn’t put my finger on it, but my gut said there was something wrong. It didn’t add up that he was working because he never had anything to show for it.

I agree not having control over us is the worst and only punishment you can inflict on them. The only problem is now he needs to gain control again – which means let the games begin. I will be strong. I haven’t come this far to let him win his sick game.

This is such a great place to be able to come. When I felt alone in the beginning it was here. Now well into the process and having a setback it’s here. To everyone, thank you.

Dear Tryingtorecover,

You know, having your son not fall for the gaslighting and the FOG is so reassuring, because so many times they PLAY the kid like a good fiddle, to get back at you.

I am so happy and thankful that your son isn’t falling for that, and since he has seen the lies and deception, etc. he is not, in my opinion, likely to fall in the future—“forewarned is forearmed” and when you don’t trust someone it is difficult for them to EARN that trust, and especially for a P so if he sees through it now (you didn’t say how old he was) he is not in my opinion likely to be sucked by in because the P can’t keep up a good front for too long at a time. Besides, kids are NOT stupid, they I think can see through the words and look at the actions more than we adults can because we have trained ourselves to listen to the words and not the body language and the actions so much. People SPEAK more with body than mouth and are much more honest with their actions than their words. Good [email protected] AND GOOD FOR YOU FOR RAISING HIM RIGHT!

Although my own adopted son is 31, he has been discvoering recently that some “friends” of ours are taking advantage of his and my good nature. I set some boundaries for these people and distanced my self from them. My son is also seeing for the first time, these people in the TRUE light of how they are not only taking advantage of me (which I have now put a halt to) but would take advantage of him as well. Since he has always idolized these people from his childhood, this was a tough lesson for him. I am so glad that he is “catching on” to this. He is finally getting it that their ‘poor planning does not constitute and emergency on his part, and that he doesn’t have to drop everything to “fix” their self-caused problems.

There are so many lessons for us all, adults and chldren alike, in dealing with these people and there are some very good ones that if we will learn them will benefit us the rest of our lives. I am so glad when I see a young person learn the lessons that I wish I had learned when I was young. I think of all the problems I could have avoided by knowing what I know now about psychopaths. Of course I obviously was a “slow learner” and had to re-take the class until I finally “got it” but it will benefit me the rest of my life. I am just glad though when young people catch on at a much earlier age, because it will save them tremendous grief in this world for the rest of their lives.

Just hearing your good news about your son, and then my son coming in and talking about how he had “finally gotten” it about our “friends” has MADE MY DAY! Baby steps add up to MILES AND MILES.

OxDrover, my son will be 15 next month. His dad left last year. He is starting to remember things and figure them out. A couple of weeks ago he asked me if I remembered an incident from when he was little. He was riding his bike in the street, which he wasn’t allowed to do, and when I saw him he told me his father said it was OK. I went in and asked Bad Dad if he told him it was OK. He said he didn’t, so I went back outside and my son got in trouble for not only riding in the street, but for lying. I don’t really remember this particular time, but I know stuff like this happened more than once. It’s just so unbelievable to me still the extent of the lying. Something so “everyday life”, so trivial, but he still had to lie about it.

I’m glad you had your day made! You deserve lots of good days!

Tryingtorecover, your kid is SMART!! And kids don’t forget that kind of stuff! As long as he never gets to trusting your X he will protect himself. At 15 he has learned a valuable lesson, and at this point maybe you can give him a copy of Robert Hare’s book “without conscience” and let him read it. I think it might be a real eye opener to hiim to see that his dad is not unique and that there is a NAME for the condition.

It is so refershing to me to see a smart kid catch on to the P and not believe them. To see through the FOG. And, it also looks like your son escaped the genetic curse too! That’s good as well. You are a fortunate and blessed lady. Give that boy a big hug for me and tell him that His “auntie Oxy” thinks he is an awesome young man!

Thanks Oxy, I’ll tell him!

I’ve been wondering when will it be time to explain the disorder to him. I’ve talked to my counselor and she said she would talk to him if I wanted. She also feels he has a good handle on things. He has also gone to his own counselor and she doesn’t pull any punches with him. She says to him it is what it is. Although she has not named the disorder to him, she talks to him about handling the lying and manipulation.

He still wants to see his dad so far, so I just want to equip him with the tools he needs to handle himself. I also want him to know when to stand up to him and when it’s time to stay quiet. I worry every time he goes with him because when he gets angry he drives extremely aggressively.

I think when the time is right for him to read about the disorder, it will help him to know his dad is not unique.

I just remembered why my counselor told me she would explain the disorder to him. I told her what he calmly and rhetorically asked my mother after talking to him – Why is my dad such an a$$ h*le? I guess that sums it up.

I think the way the P targets the child is the biggest abuse of you of all. As teenagers they are so vulnerable. I was a single parent for a long time before the P came into my life. He was, of course, all of my dreams come true, the icing on the cake plus the cherry on the top! For three months i was the happiest person thinking at last i had found my soul mate. Nothing and no-one can prepare you for the absoulte devastation they cause but when your child is affected that is when they really do the ultimate damage. He was the first man i had allowed to live in my home in 12 years as i trusted him to be with me and my son. He ended up subjecting me to the most horrendous and soul destoying emoitional and verbal abuse. After 6 months i no longer recongised the person looking back at me from the mirror. It happens that fast and they are so good it destroys you. At the time i did not even know what a narcassist/sociopath was. I felt sorry for him, he was always caught up in a cycle of abuse followed by showing me so much love and tenderness, it totally destroys your ability to think, reason and at times even function but when its affects your child thats when you know you have to find the strength and courage form somewhere to stop him. I am so ashamed that my son was witness to me being abused. I had always been strong for him and we had a brilliant close relationship but the P started to poison my sons mind against me. It would start with commnets like ‘yours mums really cruel isn’t she’ when i was out later than expected through work or late back with the shopping. When i went out with a friend one night, which he could never cope with, i would come back to both of them sitting in scilence with accusing looks on their faces because i had actually go and ‘left’ them, and that had made me, in the P’s eyes so horrible and bad. He would side with my son when i was trying to discipline him totally undermining all i was trying to do to make him look the good guy. I came to a head when i would have to ask my son to stay in his room at times if the P was in full blown emotional strop. I would just sit on the end of the sofa shaking, hoping against hope that he would fall into a drunken sleep so i could be allowed to get into the kitchen to get my son something to eat. I found an empty wine bottle in the P’s bag once and he said it must have been my sons. He was always berating him, saying he was lazy, spoilt etc whilst all the time he was jsut being a typical teenager. The damage he did to me was immense but when it comes to your child thats where the damge is really done and thats when you need the strength to get out and away.

Dear Tryingtorecover

You will never ever undertand the lies, as you said they lie about the most bizzare things. My ex-P was going round telling everyone his new girlfriend, now wife, was really rough, covered in tatoos, ugly etc but when i met her the poor woman was none of these things! Why lie about it? You will never be able to make any sense out of the whys because thats part of the illness. It is there to manipulate, control, confuse and dumdfound you until in the end you doubt your own sanity and reasoning and this is exactly the effect they intended to create. Clever aren’t they?

Tryingtorecover.. you are lucky your son is seeing clearly. My kids are still pretty confused about it all, though I can’t understand why.. seeing as I’m here for them every day of their lives, while their father can’t even be bothered to send them so much as a christmas card for the last 12 years.
BUT… I do not know why it is, but my first husband followed me wherever I moved until his new gf put a stop to it. He said it was to be near the kids, but I found that ludicrous as he never took them for visits. In fact, I liked being far away because it made it easier for the kids to understand why he couldn’t come to see them. It was one of the most painful and upsetting things he did.
Years later after I thought there was no way he could hurt me anymore, he supposedly had his vasectomy reversed and fathered another child.. it was like a sucker punch in the gut. ( I found out later that was all a lie anyway and now there is another little boy out there who wonders why his dad never comes around… sigh)

Henry.. you always crack me up. I’ll never be able to go to the lake again without wondering what’s at the bottom of it. It’s a good thing you are gay, or I think we would all be fighting over you.

Dear Tryingtorecover,

You are doing a great job with your son, and the therapy will help him get the idea what is going on. My X husband was mentally ill and my divorce pretty “crazy” and I took my kids to therapy for two years afterwards, but they were smaller than yours is now. The therpay didn’t do my P-son any good, but at the time I thought it was doing good as I didn’t have any problem out of him except once (which in RETROSPECT I can see actually was a P-incident) at age 11, but by puberty he was “full blown” P which I “passed off” as a little worse than ususal teenaged years, hoping it would resolve, but it only got worse. By 17 I should have cut the strings then and DUMPED him outright, but I didn’t. I think if your son is that “smart” and seeing things at that age (15) you have dodged the bullet where genetics are concerned. Plus, with him seeing the “light” about his dad’s lying etc. he is just going to be super and do so well! I know it is difficult for a kid to either have a “defective” parent or a “missing” parent.

I was fortunate to have a wonderful step father, but I still wondered about my abscent biological father. I was curious and wanted to know about him, to know him. I wasn’t prepared in any way for what I encountered when I went to live with and work for him. In retrospect, I was a “babe in the woods” for his manipulation and abuse. In the healing afterwards I was also “not informed” and stubling in the dark about what “train” had run over me….and all the things that we encounter now with others not understanding why we are so devestated, was SO TRUE. I tried to tell people and NO ONE believed me—since my second husband Knew my Bio father HE BELIEVED ME for sure. There are others who knew him who also believed me, but it was hard when I was so young and so naive.

So I’ve been on both sides of “that cloud now” and seen it from the child with the abscent parent-P who comes around when you are a teenager, and also the parent of a P who “blossomed” into a “full blown criminal P” by age 17, totally definant and out of control. He is so much like my P-bio father (whom he has never met) that it is SPOOKY. My older son C looks almost identical to my P-bio father (I also physically resemble my P-bio father much more than my mother’s side of the family) but my son C is NOTHING like my P-bio father psychologically or emotionally.

Yea, they spread their genes far and wide and generally don’t stay around to raise the kids, especially the males, but many times also they hang in enough to use the children as weapons to beat the mother over the head with. I feel for mothers who have children by these predators and I sure feel for the chldren who are either abused by visits, or made to “wonder” why no visits. Either way is sure not “ideal.” But of the two, I would prefer an “abscent” P-father for the child’s sake.

Good luck Kat with your children and you too Tryingtorecover. It sounds like you are both doing good jobs and that is all we can hope to do. Being a mother is the best job and the worst job in the world, but at the same time I wouldn’t have it any other way. Losing one child was painful, but the two I have left are the joy of my life!

Psychiatr Clin North Am. 2006 Sep;29(3):709-24. Psychopathy: a clinical and forensic overview
.Hare RD.
Department of Psychology, University of British Columbia, 2136 West Mall, Vancouver, British Columbia V6T 1Z4, Canada. [email protected]

There is a substantial amount of empirical evidence that psychopathy, as measured by the PCL-R and its derivatives, is a predictor of recidivism and violence in prison, forensic psychiatric, and civil psychiatric populations. The PCL-R is one of the most generalizable of the risk factors identified thus far, and for this reason it is included in various actuarial and structured clinical risk assessment procedures. Although psychopathy is not the only risk factor for recidivism and violence, it is too important to ignore, particularly with respect to violence. Treatment and management are difficult, time-consuming, and expensive, but new initiatives based on current theory and research on psychopathy and the most effective correctional philosophies may help to reduce the harm done by psychopaths.

PMID: 16904507 [PubMed – indexed for MEDLINE]

I am trying to put these new therapies in perspective. An dit is important to note if you review the lit, a lot o fit is focused on children, not full-blown psychopaths.

i know this sounds silly,but i cant find an email address to the o magazine or show….the contact us doesnt work….anybody out there can help??….

What is the ‘o’ magazine? Are you talking about Oprah?

yes beverly oprah thks so much for any help…its not very easy the contact us does not work for me

Dear NWView. I dont know much about Oprah or the magazine, I dont know if anyone else here can help you.

Try Oprah.com, it’s a general link to most of her stuff.

tks guys …i tried that, but no luck…im trying to do something for our community here….so maybe will need to resort to snail mail

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