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Psychopaths in the corner suite

According to research by Dr. Paul Babiak and Dr. Robert Hare, one in 25 business leaders may be a psychopath. Their research will be presented in a BBC Horizon documentary called Are you good or evil?, Wednesday, September 7, at 9 p.m.

Read One in 25 business leaders may be a psychopath, study finds, on Guardian.co.uk.

Story suggested by a Lovefraud reader.


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I wonder if Dr. Babiak and Dr. Hare conducted the same study on our elected public officials what the outcome would show??? Interesting

Milo,
it would show that 1 in 25 politicians is NOT a psychopath.
😛

That article strikes me as badly written because it doesn’t talk about the evil that spaths do. It just says over and over that they are charming. That would read an uninformed reader to think, “oh how nice, a bumbling charmer. What’s so bad about that?”

I agree with your percentages of politicians, Sky, look at how many governors have lately been exposed as crooks, cheaters, etc. and how many other offices! That’s a statement, not a question! LOL

I think part of it is that “power corrupts” and part of it is that only someone very narcissistic would want a job as a politician. So I think we get the worst of even the best men and women we elect.

Just like no one who was “normal” would want a job as a prison guard no matter how much it paid, so we get a lot of people who are high in P traits applying for the job in the first place, and being around all those psychopaths rubs off bad on even the best of the people working there.

There is no way you can associate with psychopaths day in and day out and not start to think and act like them in some ways. it is “Contagious” to some extent. As the book of Proverbs says “Evil companions corrupt good morals.”

shameonme,
It’s true that they can con you into doing things that you would not normally do, IF you don’t know about spaths.

Once we have been educated, they actually serve the opposite purpose: as an example of how not to be.

That’s why educating the public about them is so critical. Once enough people know that the spaths are out there and how to spot them, the tide will turn.

There is one problem though. It is a conundrum mentioned by Scott Peck in the very beginning of his book, “People of the Lie.” By informing everyone about the spaths, many higher functioning spaths will simply learn to wear their masks more tightly. Some of them will be difficult to ascertain. That’s why the education must be thorough. Spaths are sneaky and they like to pretend to be victims. The red flags should be taught in first grade.

The walking cold sore wanted to be a big time politician. She actually was elected chairperson of a board controlling school money. When she told me she wanted to run for a higher office that was the first time I realized I was in above my head. I agree with Ox.its not possible to spend that much time with these walking cold sores and not have them rub you the wrong way.God bless those who have the strength to resist s/n tendencies. I was only in the relationship for a short while and am a changeed person. The when in Rome factor changes people

Milo: I truly believe the globalist world is going to the dogs because the “sociopaths” have taken over.

Many world leaders are “psychos.” Psychos always gravitate towards money and power and I wouldn’t be surprised if there are some in our own government calling the shots.

Yep, money and power…they seem to go hand in hand…

one/joy_step_at_a_time

HAS ANYONE HEARD FROM PANTHER????

I’ve been working in the executive suite for more than 20 years at major corporations – household names you would know.

I can tell you that yes, BOTH N’s and S’s are crawling all over the place in the corner offices. I’ve seen it, and it goes to reason.

When you have an executive level job, it’s not like anybody can see the results of what you’ve done that day immediately, like one can see what a welder accomplished, or a builder, or a nurse. The implications of the decisions executives do take months and years to materialize. So the only way to judge an executive in the here and now is to listen – do they speak with confidence? Do they seem to know what they’re talking about? To watch – do they dress appropriately? act appropriately? As we know, spaths are the ultimate fakers and liars. They can mimic, they can fake, they can copy, and they’re ruthless. They’re not held back by empathy for the people they hurt.

If you haven’t read the PSYCHOPATH TEST it’s a very funny read that touches on this topic.

I’ve had countless “N” bosses over the years. I know exactly what they want and how to play the game. My mother was a N, my bosses are “N”s, it’s familiar. And very unhealthy.

SK

SK:

Yeah, the job I left was also from a big company that a lot of you would know.

I LOVE your third paragraph…soooo true. OMG…no one could have said it better!!! And I never thought of or looked at it that way before, but you are so right!!! They can just fake their way through…and boy, have I seen it! Sometimes they do get caught down the road though…I have seen that, too!

I was just reading up on Ted Bundy in the wikipedia.
One interesting thing:

As Rule and Aynesworth both noted, for Bundy, the fault always lay with someone or something else. While he eventually confessed to 30 murders, he never accepted responsibility for any of them, even when offered that opportunity prior to the Chi Omega trial—which would have averted the death penalty.[265] He deflected blame onto a wide variety of scapegoats, including his abusive grandfather, the absence of his biological father, the concealment of his true parentage, alcohol, the media, the police (whom he accused of planting evidence), “society” in general, violence on television, and ultimately, pornography.[266] On at least one occasion he even tried to blame his victims: “I have known people who…radiate vulnerability,” he wrote in a 1977 letter to Kloepfer. “Their facial expressions say ‘I am afraid of you.’ These people invite abuse…By expecting to be hurt, do they subtly encourage it?”[267] Blame shifting and outright denial were Bundy’s principal defense mechanisms. “I don’t know why everyone is out to get me,” he complained to Lewis. “He really and truly did not have any sense of the enormity of what he had done,” she said.[264] “A long-term serial killer erects powerful barriers to his guilt,” Keppel wrote, “walls of denial that can sometimes never be breached.”[268]

No matter how I try to find a way to argue that he might have been influenced by these factors, in the end all indicators point to choosing evil for the sake of evil. There were plenty of other things that could have influenced him. So why did these particular things have such an attraction for him? What is it about hurting people that has an addictive quality for some people?

I agree with you on that, Sky, they still have CHOICES no matter how badly they have been used and abused as children, or how much porno they have seen or how many twinkies they have eaten.

Donna, I realize not EVERY prison guard is a psychopath to start with or becomes one after working there, but there are way too many who are just as bad, I think, as the inmates and tend to be high in P-traits. Being a prison guard has got to be a miserable job and I do not envy anyone who does it. The good ones that are there though have my admiration, because they put their lives on the line just like cops do. It has been my misfortune to meet and interact with many guards that I would consider “not nice” people who seem to go out of their way to be rude and verbally abusive to visitors to the prisons.

Oxy,
my curiosity is about those choices.
For example, if a psychopath was told, since childhood, that being generous and atruisitic was BAD or against the rules of society, what would a sociopath do?

I think ODD is an integral link to this pathology. They do things with the express purpose of being oppositional to authority.

Even the word “sociopath” means “against society”. I wonder if we could trick them into WANTING to be good. They are very simple minded after all. Even the high IQ ones, can be messed with because they don’t really know what they want.

Sky, I think tricking them into being “good” by telling them good is actually bad would be like trying to tell a child everything in the world not to do….like do not climb on the ceiling fan, do not climb on the roof, do not….etc etc. there are just not enough hours in the day to mention everything that they should not do or should do, and most of “telling” a kid how to behave is not SAID, it is modeled. You’d have to start when the kid was 1 day old and model abuse, then expect him to do the opposite? Nah, I don’t think it would work.

Some psychopaths are oppositional, especially as teenagers, and if you tell them not to do something they will do it or die, but I think it is about control, and if you are telling them something you are attempting to control them and they will NOT allow someone else to Control them. I know my P son would do the exact opposite of what I told him to do as a teenager, even if it brought consequences on him…he still sees himself as a winner not a loser even though he’s spent more than 50% of his life in prison. Just like You mentioned in the quotes about Ted Bundy, my son will NOT ACCEPT RESPONSIBILITY for his crimes, they are all my fault because I was such a mean parent and tried to control him….like keep him from stealing. Mean old me.

Oxy,
it’s so very interesting how much alike these spaths are.

Shifting blame is a huge huge red flag. They all do this.

Hating their mom is another red flag, yet my dad, who is a narcissist, WORSHIPS HIS MOM (trauma bond). But my mom, whom I think is a spath, worships her dad but doesn’t say much about her mom.

I don’t think tricking them about what we value is that difficult. They don’t actually listen to your words, as much as they watch your face for emotions. You can trick them by expressing angst when you are happy and vice versa. Believe me: this actually works, I’ve done it.

It’s so very strange, that it’s hard to believe.

It might be about control, that’s a big issue for spaths. But I’ve also read that it is about shame. They refuse to be shamed because they feel they were unfairly shamed early in life, so they behave shamelessly as a protective mechanism.

I guess we need to find a spath and shame him into telling the truth! LOL!

spaths NEVER tell the truth, when a lie will do just as well. 😛

Donna wrote,

“I don’t quite agree with you about the prison guards. My uncle and two cousins both worked in a prison, and they aren’t psychopaths. So evil traits don’t have to rub off. I guess it has to do with the obvious divide between the staff and inmates.”

I agree. My brother has worked in corrections for nearly 20 years. He has great empathy for people in general, but not for the inmates. I used to be quite dismayed at his attitude towards these men, but I think I understand it much better now. He sees sociopaths every day and I think he knows any effort to feel sorry for them and to rehabilitate is wasted.

Dawn, that is the way it SHOULD be with a corrections officer, exactly, but unfortunately I think too many times people who are psychopaths already go into corrections (or other jobs where there is “authority” or “power”—cops, judges, etc.) where they have power over others,, even if it is just over other psychopaths. They get off on ordering others around.

Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely. There was a psychological experiment done with college students, labeling some of them “guards” and some “prisoners” (I can’t remember where this was done but it was professionally done and published, but I have CRS) I’ll see if I can find the link, but anyway, the kids who were “labeled” the “guards” started to become abusive to the “prisoners” and this type of experiment has been conducted several times with the same results.

Look at Nazi Germany, not all the guards at those prisons were psychopaths, but the culture from the psychopathic thinking of the time, that the Jews were vermin, made these people lose their empathy for the prisoners as even human beings, it allowed them to do heinous crimes against humanity.

Being around abuse, cruelty and violence is bound to have some effects on the psyche and I think, with anyone, it takes I think a strong moral compass on the part of a guard, police officer, or attorney to cope with the kind of people they must work with on a day to day basis and keep their moral compass and their empathy intact.

Ox,

For sure there are people working in corrections who should not be there and abuse their power. There are those who enjoy having total power over other human beings and abuse it at will. And none of the others, the normal ones, say a word about it to those in authority who could stop it. But they know that if something happens, like an inmate riot, the abusers will be the first to die.

Dawn,

I imagine too, that the good guards have problems reporting the bad ones to authority too because they know that ini the event of an inmate attack on them, those that they had reported would just stand by and watch while an inmate hurt them. It is an evil world inside the prisons I have no doubt.

In Texas many of the guards take money for smuggling in cell phones and tobacco products and even when they are caught the worst they get is a slap on the wrist and lose their jobs…even when they smuggle in the cell phones which is a felony. It’s like it is a big game with them, just like it is with the inmates.

Dr. Liane Leedom’s X who was in prison MARRIED the prison nurse! Then he got arrested again after he got out because he was trying to pass himself off as a doctor (he is not a doctor) and trying to get a job as a doctor. DUH?

Ox,

They are a small group standing against a large number of criminals. They stick together even when they despise each other. Like police officers = “the thin blue line”

Dawn, I understand completely….they are dealing with a group of which 25 % scores 30 or above on the psychopath check list revised, and the AVERAGE score is 22 which is still a pretty rough bunch of folks. The corrections officers MUST stick together for survival. “The enemy of my enemy is my friend” under some circumstances and that is one of them. It is still a hard way to make a living.

Ox,

Yes, its a terrible job for my brother. Steady paycheck, state pension, but it changes them, the people who work there. They’re warned in the beginning that they will change. And it’s not for the better, I think.

Dawn, I think it is like continual COMBAT, that constant being on ALERT for danger. I noticed that my son and other prisoners, could not sit and talk to you and make eye contact, they were continually scanning the room for danger. That state of hyper alertness, wondering from which corner of the room an attack is going to come from must be something that would prey on your nerves.

“As nervous as a long-tailed cat in a room full of rocking chairs” I remember well when I would JUMP any time there was a car going up or down the road a half mile away from me, and if someone drove up in the yard and I didn’t recognize the vehicle or them my stress level went up to HYPER ALERT… I am STILL cautious, but not living in terror, but I could not work at a prison where I had to be on guard all the time.

I worked at a locked mental facility a couple of times, and when one of the kids tried to kill me (and almost succeeded) I decided it was God’s way of telling me to look for a job and I did….didn’t look back. Someone has to do it, but it isn’t gonna be me.

I was telling my hubby about this discussion last night. I have been married to him for 42 years this month and I have never known him when he wasn’t wearing a uniform. I told him about your comment Oxy about no “normal” person … He laughed and asked me what I wrote. I said “nothing, yet” He wanted me to share the following story. He spent 30 years as a firefighter, before retiring. It was required by the city that after a traumatic event, such as a fire or accident where there had been fatalities, that anyone involved attend counseling sessions to see how they were handling the aftermath. These sessions were usually conducted by Dr. B, an older gentleman who “understood” how these men dealt with these type of situations. The men that lasted at this job, who could turn right around and go back into a burning building, pick up body parts from under a car, etc., and stay at least somewhat sane, usually cope by using what us “normal” people would consider the most disgusting type of humor about the situation.

After one particular event with multiple deaths, Dr. B wasn’t available so they sent a young, just out of school, psychologist to conduct the session. To make a long story short, she went running out of the station yelling, you’re all a bunch of crazy, sicko’s. When Dr. B got the report, he knew they were all coping and would be OK.

IMO ONLY – Oxy “normal”, not hardly, not in the conventional sense of the word, and if they are “normal” when they go in, if they last, the don’t stay that way long.

Now hubby works as a Sheriff Deputy, same deal. I think many times when we see “lack of empathy” could just be “temporarily turned off empathy”, a coping skill. When we mention the thin blue line or the brotherhood, it isn’t a club, they depend on each other with their very lives. They deal with more crap than most of us can even imagine, they see the worst of the worst, the craziest of the crazies, etc. Then they must remember to “turn the empathy” back on and become “normal” again when they come home to their families. This is where many of them have a hard time.

Now, before anyone tells me about all the “bad cops” and/or public servants, ofcourse they are out there, after all we know too well the spaths are in every walk of life and there may be more in the safety forces just for the power trip, who knows.

Just for a light chuckle, Hubby’s story from last night’s shift. He gets a call to go back up a young newbie deputy who is having trouble with an elderly woman. Elderly woman had called in a reported a horse in her house. Newbie could not find a horse in her house. Elderly lady was very irritated and was becoming violent because newbie didn’t see the horse. Hubby entered, checked in the bedroom, told elderly lady he apologized for the young deputy, he was a city boy and did not know where horses like to hide. He went out to his unit and retrieved a halter and lead line that he keeps there for getting stray horses off the street. He put the halter on the pretend horse and led it out the door. He sprayed the outside of the door with a water bottle and told the elderly lady no other horses would be able to get through the shield.

“Normal” never.

Dear Milo,

LOL ROTFLMAO Your husband is WONDERFUL!!!!! What a great guy!!!! I was on my local volunteer fire department for 13 years and retired after my husband was killed….and I know what you mean about picking people off the road side or out of burned homes….and especially if it is your neighbor you are doing CPR on.

Yea, none of us are “normal” either. LOL and As medical personnel I think we have always got to have some “black/gallows” humor in order to survive and to be able at times to turn our empathy off.

Being able to turn the hyper vigilance off though, I’m not sure I could do it any more if I worked in a violent atmosphere. Working in the inpatient unit with the VIOLENT youths for a year and a half (and almost getting stabbed by one–thank goodness I didn’t actually GET stabbed, just ALMOST) but that attack made me realize I couldn’t face any more attacks. Just the anxiety of wondering when it was coming (and yes, it was almost like a prison atmosphere, these kids were very out of control, most had committed violence) was more than I could take after that.

Tell your husband BTW that I am glad to know that someone who SEES invisible horses is protecting me and keeping me safe form those invisible horses and unicorns. LOL ((and give him a hug from me for being such a WISE man!))))

Oxy, you wrote this:

Some psychopaths are oppositional, especially as teenagers, and if you tell them not to do something they will do it or die, but I think it is about control, and if you are telling them something you are attempting to control them and they will NOT allow someone else to Control them. I know my P son would do the exact opposite of what I told him to do as a teenager, even if it brought consequences on him”he still sees himself as a winner not a loser even though he’s spent more than 50% of his life in prison. Just like You mentioned in the quotes about Ted Bundy, my son will NOT ACCEPT RESPONSIBILITY for his crimes, they are all my fault because I was such a mean parent and tried to control him”.like keep him from stealing. Mean old me.

Oh my god what you said is so, so true. My oldest son, who has a “N” father, was oppositional since the day he was born. I had the nursery schools calling me when he was 2 years old telling me they couldn’t “control” him and that I needed to come pick him up. At age two! By age 4, I had him in weekly psychotherapy. He was raising hell everywhere. By age 13, he was involved in gangs, drugs, you can’t imagine. He got expelled. But he followed through with therapy. At the same time all this chaos was going on, he had this very soft side and always rooted for the underdog. I was SO AFRAID of how he might turn out. If he even survived.

But somehow this kid pulled out of it. He went to psychotherapy regularly. He saw the truth about his dad (that he was truly a N, not the “hero” that he purported to be), he found his empathy, he accessed his heart.

Today we can talk about when he feels oppositional and controlled, and it’s usually that he’s feeling some sort of anxiety, and he needs to “control” the situation to feel better. When he was little, as I do now, I give him as many choices as possible. And now he is much more self aware than most 18 year olds.

He made the choice to go to therapy.

He turned out to be a wonderful, smart, loving kid who tells me every day he loves me.

Superkid10

Dear Superkid,

You did a great job with this young man, and you also got lucky, so I think it was a combination of good parenting and good luck that you came out with a son who makes you proud, and has found his empathy. I am so glad that you were able to pull this kid out of the abyss. I could see my kid jumping into the abyss, and me trying to hold on to him by my finger nails and him fighting me all the way. He never did quit fighting me, he just learned to fake remorse and fake a conscience because he learned the WORDS to the song, but never learned the MUSIC OF EMPATHY. (To paraphrase Dr. Hare)

As a young child, my P son was a darling….it was when he hit puberty that he “morphed” into the oppositionally defiant monster that he became. As a young child he appeared to have empathy, and I took him and his brother to counseling for years after my divorce, and in fact, I overheard him “counseling” a friend of his and our family about age 10 (he was about age 10-11 at the time) when her father had died and he was counseling her on the grief process, he sounded like an adult professional. LOL

Donna, you are so right, just hearing a GOOD story of success once in a while does give us hope that a few of these defiant kids may be saved…but note too that Superkid started working with her son at an EARLY AGE…and kept him in therapy…so I think that may be one of the keys right there. EARLY intervention. It is very heartening though to hear a success story on raising kids here at LF, too many of us have lost that battle.

Erin Brock’s junior seems to be coming around now as well….so there is another story of success and a “winning” against the genes and the psychopathic DNA donor. There must also be others here as well. I’d love to hear them!

Superkid;
I’m so glad to hear of your Jr’s progress!
I believe those of us who have created a child/ren with a toxic person share these fears for our kids. I think we all worry when we see defiant behaviors…..is it the teen years, or are they turning out like father/mother (toxic parent)….OMG…..what can we do……

Well……the good thing is…..there ARE things we can do…..
and as a loving parent, we know we can’t just discard the jr’s at first sign of trouble. WE offer counseling, we continue to love and model acceptable behaviors….even through the storms.
Sometimes, it’s inate…..and it’s the nature/nuture-genes question/outcome……but nonetheless…..we CAN’T give up….because that is ‘who’ we are! All kids deserve a chance…….and we have to parent with no regrets. Give it 200%.

It’s heart wrenching (I know) to watch our kids take not such a great path….and wonder…..OMG! But I do believe…..that there may come a time where these kids start seeing the reality of the situation and recall all of our modeling and counseling suggestions……and decide to ‘hop onboard’.
For us as parents……it’s a crap shoot. Am I gonna lose them to their choices…….or will this turn around.

My eldest is 19…..and he’s started making MUCH better choices for himself. He’s also back in counseling (his choice), he’s seeing behaviors in others he doesn’t like and won’t accept. He’s discovering the world and setting boundaries. He’s much calmer…..and the dramatics have subsided. I see him using the ‘tools’ from counseling of which he rejected up until now. I wished he’d of participated sooner……BUT……he wasn’t ready and now is his time. And as we all know……none of us can be pushed into learning….as pure as the intentions are. I also believe anxiety plays a huge roll in their behaviors! One of the tools Jr’s counselor is working with him on is controlling the axiety respoonse……not everything else around him. Ya know…..control what we have control over! 🙂 It’s helping BUNCHES and his awareness alone is a huge help.

I think we have to do as we have….continue to love and support…..and after that……hope for the best and draw lines. Oxy wasn’t as fortunate and her son is an example of what we all fear as parents. All of the parents in Oxy’s situation have shared our fears.
None of us are alone……..
We just have to keep plugging along and fighting for our kids……until the writing is on the wall!!!!

Kudo’s to you…..Im so glad your son has chosen a different and better path!!!

XXOO
EB

Superkid ~

Thanks so much, your son sounded like my Grandson, almost 11 now. There is such a sweet side, but defiant is his middle name. He needs to control almost everything. I give him a lot of choices too and give him control over some things in his life. He has been in therapy since age 3, but lately he is there physically but refuses to participate in any way.

You give me hope and a reason to keep doing and doing and doing.

MiLo

Milo….
You said it……
Keep doing and doing and doing…….KEEP DOING DARLEN!!!! Your Gson will reap the benefits!

Dear MiLo,

I’m sorry your Grand is not participating in therapy right now, but at 11 there is still a lot of “wiggle room” for HOPE….I think I sort of went a BIT TOO FAR with the HOPE, til he was nearly 40! LOL But you know, there is a time when we do have to “wash our hands” and say “I’ve done all I can” and move on. Making that break is difficult though! At ANY AGE!

Grand’s therapist is on maternity leave right now, so we are taking a break. I’m thinking this may be a good time for a change. I am wondering about a male therapist. He relates so well to young guys.

Suggestions?????

Milo, if he is not participating in therapy as it is with this therapist, it might be a good time to change. I think your suggestion for a male therapist at this time (age 11) might be a good idea too. So he can see that all this therapy stuff isn’t just “woman’s ideas” that he can ignore cause he’s a “guy.” LOL

Oxy ~ that was my thought, I think he is sick of us chickies

My P son has NO respect for women in particular….and I think his especial hatred for me is based on my “attempts to control” him. The few times I managed to “trump his ace” still pith him off to the core….so for several reasons I can see a benefit to having a male therapist for your son. Some one he can emulate and look up to.

What about male mentors also….flood him with men. Youth leaders, male teachers at school, male community leaders, male sports dudes etc….and sprinkle in a woman here and there.
This is one of the things I did……I did watch Jr manipulate all the new males, wear them thin until the next one came around…..but a few of them stuck around……and they’ve been a big help! I would inform them all of his inclination to manipulate……and please set boundaries with him. They all fell for it in the beginning, until they learned the curve. ALL of them were influential in one way or another…..It has lead him into seeking out his own positive roll models……

Jr’s got a male counselor. Same guy we ALL saw years ago…..counselor knows his fathers horrid ways….which helps jr NOW open up and not have to start from scratch. Counselor knows me also……the dynamics etc….This is the counselor I saw for 3 years during the firestorm of my life! I think I was lucky with the counsellor…..I taught him the sociopathic experience…..he was there during divorce, I discussed my tactics etc….. he was the one who told me I needed to fight fire with fire…..and I would share with him weekly about my ‘journey’ with calling on my ‘inner spath’ to fight the asshole! He would remind me to keep the balance and remember ‘who’ I was…..and be able to jump back into my authentic self after going on spath attack.
He saw the beginning, middle and end…..and now he see’s jr willing to participate alone……i’m sure counselors thrilled!!!! ( I no longer see him).

I know grand loves “Papa”, but views him as old and unhip, which he is. LOL Grand has him in like a different category. He craves the attention of, let’s face it a Dad, which he does not have. My youngest son spends time with him, but I don’t want to impose on him all the time. Oh, I can see Grand manipulate my son too.

All of the therapists grand has seen have been under the supervision of the psychologist we originally took him to when he was just three. So, like you EB, we never had to start all over with our sad story and that has helped. But, I think a change is needed.

Thanks guys

Donna, Oxy, Milo

I could write a short story on the grief I went through with my son to get him on the right path. He was tormented by his N father who hates women.

I think Milo said it – about flooding children with positive role models, I think that is SO important. Alternate choices to emulate aside from the toxic parent. That was AS IMPORTANT as therapy, in my humble opinion.

Oxy said it’s a good idea to consider letting the children pick a male therapist. Yes, yes, yes. I thought consistency in a therapist was so important – my son started with a woman at the age of 4, at about age 8 he had had “enough” of her – and rebelled – so I let him interview a number of therapists, and he picked one, a guy, who he stayed with for 5 years. Then he outgrew that therapist and selected another one (I had him briefly hospitalized to break his drug addiction) – he found this third therapist at the hospital. It was ALL HIS CHOICE.

I don’t consider myself a great mother. I try. I have ADD. I work full time. I beat myself all the time for not being patient enough, flexible enough, whatever it is.

But I did try. And, yes, Oxy, I think it was a stroke of luck. And I am so grateful for all the wonderful people around who helped this kid get his head on straight.

SK

SK ~ Interview and pick his own GREAT IDEA. I can come up with ones I approve of, then he can pick. SK, you must know my Grandson, that is ONE way that he is sure to cooperate, because it was HIS idea.

And that is all any of us can do TRY, sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t, but we were there to try.

Thanks – MiLo

Dear Sk, I am also ADHD as well, so I understand. I also raised an ADHD son who while he is not perfect (in fact he is an arse!) but he is not a psychopath at least, so there is something positive to say about that! LOL I do not believe that kids who are ADHD or ADD cannot control their behavior or should not be held responsible.

I had a patient once ADHD kid who threw a chair at his teacher (he was 13-14 at the time) and his mother used that as an excuse for everything…she said “well what do you expect, he has ADHD?” I said “I expect that he NOT throw chairs at his teachers.” LOL I also realize that there are degrees of ADHD, but my kid was as ADHD as they get, couldn’t sit still at all…and I took him out of public school, he couldn’t function well in the classroom, but I did get him through college and he is self supporting and hard working, and is not a criminal, so I feel like to some extent I was a success there—especially considering what I had to work with genetically.

I don’t feel like I was a “failure” with the other one, the psychopath, though I was not able to pull off a miracle, I did the best I could with what I had, but HE HAD CHOICES TOO, and he chose to exercise those choices to break the law instead of to exercise the choices he had for college etc.

Doing the best we can is all that any parent can do…with the resources we have available. It sounds to me like YOU DID A GOOD JOB, as well as your son made some positive choices as well. So TOWANDA for you!!!!

one/joy_step_at_a_time

i had a move in neighbour up the street when i was 14. she was 29 and had kids. I didn’t realize what an asshole her husband was ( i found out about 3 years later – and this was right, i shouldn’t have known and she kept it to herself) she and i became friends and i could talk to her, and she didn’t judge me. it was a very important relation ship for me. my mom was mortified (i am sure she could see how bad this woman’s life was. plus, my mom is a snob.)

i reconnected with this woman when i came back to town – she lives out in the boonies, and because i don’t have wheels I haven’t seen her in at least a year. but she saved my emo self as a teen. she really did. i didn’t have role models outside my family. I had a couple of teachers i admired, but they were not involved in my life at all. i grew myself up in that fucked up dysfunctional household and when i couldn’t stand the repression any longer, i got stoned. at 13. and stay stoned for about 3 years. and then stayed half stoned for another two years, then got the fuck out.

you know it’s all very weird tonight. I know i am off because have had mold exposures – but it’s like all of a sudden most of the people i have dated or are in my family look really disordered…..

OneJoy,
You are probably right. Me too.
The masks worked especially well on those of us who were raised by disfunctional people. We naturally didn’t even question the disfunctional behavior. At this point in my life, EVERYONE is suspect, but especially those people whom I feel very close and bonded with too quickly.

It doesn’t matter too much though, because the red flags eventually emerge and I know a spath when I see one now. And I think you do too. The last piece of the puzzle was my mother. She is not your typical spath. She works hard, she meets her responsibilities, she prays and encourages others to pray. She is shallow. That’s how I know that the other “good” things about her are just a mask. A good mask.

one/joy_step_at_a_time

sky – the ‘tell’ with your mom is the the un-christian like behaviour paired with the ‘form’ of christian worship. behaviours not adding up. wha tthey are doing and what they say they are doing being diff. cog. dis.

Skylar

Can you tell me what you mean when you say your mom is shallow?

My expath told me he was shallow, I still can’t process what that means.

one/joy_step_at_a_time

i think my mom just heaped all the shit of her life on her kids – transferred all her own fears and pains from her life onto us. i don’t think she was particularly reflective, just scared and messed up all the time, and in her early 40’s banged up badly in a car accident that pretty much ruined the possibility she might have had to change her life for the better. and that selfish husband of hers didn’t insist that they move and that he could get a job that would support us, so that she didn’t have to work in her half healed state. nope. she was supply and he is an n.

i am thinking my n ex might be a spath. sky she was ALL about the mask, and the sex and keeping people on the line, and being charming and explosive rage, and being ‘just right ‘ for me….hmmmm. she pretended to be a buddhist. she wasn’t any kind of Buddhist i recognize. her mom is a whack job extraordinaire.

SK,
shallow is a word that I had used to describe people, in the past. But I didn’t know the true meaning of the word, until I learned about spaths.
It’s hard for me to explain, but I’ll try.

Shallow is a huge word. It was used by Cleckley and Hare, as in, “shallow affect”, meaning that they feel emotions but not deeply. Spaths can move in and out of any emotion, the way an actor would. I wrote once that it’s like a method actor’s procedure for creating the emotion required for a scene. The emotion is not long lasting because it isn’t deeply rooted.

Shallowness is also a result of not having any values. That’s why spaths wear other people’s skins. They see someone who impresses them (they are easily impressed) and they want to be that person. The very next day, they could meet someone else, who is the complete opposite, and they will want to be that person too. They do this because they value nothing, instead, they borrow values. They are like infants with memetic desire. Rene Girard explains it very well with his theory of subject, object and model.

My mother’s shallowness is apparent in her lack of values. I realized early on (around age 10), that she did not pass on any values to me. I felt an emptiness when I looked inside to search for what was important to me. I found nothing.

I’m working to find values, still to this day. I’m discovering my own values, but none came from her. This was confusing to me at first, because I thought that I had failed to connect to her values, but on closer inspection I now see that she didn’t have any.

But, she values her garden. It’s a riotous jungle of greenery and flowers, but there isn’t much order. It’s what she uses to upstage the neighbors. It’s her facade. She values the garden because she gets complements on it.

Most of my family members value material wealth and the things which show wealth. That’s it.

It’s interesting that your exspath said he is shallow. Most people who are shallow are not self-aware of it. Most of them actually believe that the symbols of a certain thing are equal to the thing itself. They don’t understand that it’s a shallow representation. To them, it’s “real” because they believe it’s real. Reminds me of Peter Pan.

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