By | May 7, 2006 7 Comments

Sociopaths, children and the legal system

Robert from Illinois has sent a few e-mails to Lovefraud. He was married to a woman who he believes is a sociopath—he describes the relationship as non-emotional and loveless, with constant financial and verbal attacks. Robert is now divorced, but has a five-year-old son with the woman.

Here’s what Robert wrote in a recent e-mail:

“Even though I told my divorce lawyer that my ex was a sociopath, he said, all you’re doing is giving her a label. You still have to have evidence she is unfit to your son. I told her once that my son wants to live with me and guess what she said ?. She said, You’re not getting my son. Typical sociopath response.”

The response of Robert’s lawyer is common in divorce and custody situations involving sociopaths. Many lawyers don’t understand what a sociopath is, how they operate and the damage they cause. Neither do the courts.

Apparently, the view today is that someone may have no conscience an no heart, but that doesn’t make them a bad person—or an unfit parent.

Does anyone know of a sociopath who was a good parent?

Are there any children of sociopaths who had happy, healthy childhoods?

I hope for the day when the diagnosis of sociopath means something in the legal system. In the meantime, millions of people who got involved with sociopaths are left to struggle with ignorant lawyers and family court judges.

Robert also wrote, “I want to turn this nightmare into something positive and I’m looking for suggestions.” If you have some, please post them.

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I have been divorced for seven years to a man who has most of the traits listed as sociopathic. When I told my ex that I was going to divorce him he threatened that if I went through with it, I would be sorry. He made these threats verbally and in writing. He was not kidding. He has dedicated his life to making mine miserable.
My advice to the man who thinks his wife is a sociopath is 1) to keep very good records of visitation and all matters relating to the children. My records of phone messages, emails, letters, and visitation schedules have helped me have some credibility. My ex appears like the nicest guy in the world. And he can lie at the drop of a hat, and say it like it the total truth. Records have helped me to defend myself against untrue accusations, and have also helped me to show his dark side.
2) Don’t back down if you know in your heart you are right. The court system is designed to try to get people to come to some middle ground. During my divorce my ex would not get a lawyer and would not agree to any terms, so the divorce ended up in a trial. When the judge asked my husband if he would like to question me, my husband said no, that he only wanted to submit this document that told his side. The judge accepted the document and then broke for lunch. During lunch, my lawyer told me not to worry about it because the judge would not allow a document that we had not seen. Well, the lawyer was wrong, and the judge accepted it, and I never even got to read it until the following day after court. When I read the document, I was so shocked. My exhusband accused me of living a double life. He said when he came home, I would leavee our four children and go out with other men. He said he came home twice to find me with men. He also accused me of paying our mortgage with the credit cards and pocketing the money. He said I had been stealing money and hiding it for years. It was horrible and all lies. I wanted the document removed from the court. Also, at the time, I was stupid enough to agree to file jointly with my ex. He told me we would each get more money that way. He ended up keeping the entire refund. When I went to court, my ex came back and said that I had not sold the house as required in our divorce settlement. But the truth of this matter is that he told me to wait until the summer when school was out, so the kids could finish the year at their school. I did not have this in writing and was shocked again at his lies. When we went to court, I ended up agreeing to only having the first document sealed (so it wasn’t available to the public, and I only received a small fraction of my income tax. My lawyer convinced me that it was better to settle the whole matter because it was costing me money that I didn’t have and my husband and I needed to just move on. I agreed at the time, but when I got home, I almost had a mental break down over it. I did not do what was right. My ex has never moved on and I have been in court for seven years. He continues to lie whenever needed, and now that horrible document sits in the court file like it could be true.
3) My oldest son is now 14, and he now is recognizing his father for what he truly is. I suggest to the man with the sociopathic ex wife to hang in there, and be the best parent you can be for that child. When the child gets older, he will be able to decide for himself who he wants to live with. Time goes by so quickly. Be patient, be fair, and be loving to your son. Children know who treats them right.

My experience is that the courts won’t help you, and neither will the police. I have come to the realization that I will get no help with this man, but I can keep good records to protect myself from untrue accusations, I can not back down from what I think is right, and I can be a really loving parent who tries to make an awful situation the best it can be for the child.
Good luck!


Can your lawyer ask that your ex be forced to take a Psychological? These are usually very accurate, and the Psychologist could testify in court.

I have also read (not sure if it was on this site) that sociopaths thrive off of confrontation. So if you argue back with them, they will come at you even harder. The correct way to handle them is with indifference.

A true sociopath does not actually care about the child, and will lose interest usually. They want to hurt you, so if they think that it would hurt you more if they left the child’s life, they may do it….

These people are smart, but you are smarter. Avoid them at all costs, and when you do comfront them, always be indifferent and distant. A great response is “whatever”, “sure”, “no problem”.

If you make them think they have won, then they will go away. The trick is figuring out how……


Hi Sorry to read about your dilemma. I am a woman and going thru the same thing, only I’m in Texas AND this is a “who you know area”, and the judge in my case is a mans judge and does’nt care that my husband is a sociopath>a deviant sociopath. He does not care that my husband has pinched my sons ear so hard during one of his visitations,it left a hemotoma bllod bruise, that he squeezed his little leg so hard it left fingerprint bruises, he sexually molested my little boy when he was 15 months old – 22 months old, (they sd I was making this up, but a liscensed psychologist documented when my son told her-and CPS AND her said he did’nt make a loud enough outcry!!!!!!!) my soon-to-be X also gouged a peice of flesh out of my sons hand, and it turned into a staph infection (ER) but> my husband has convinced the judge I am crazy, and the judge beleives him! I have video and pics of all the abuse to my son, but he refuses to look at them! So> I know where you’re coming from. **My advice is this: get into a church, get this church behind you>there are some honest lawyers in most churches. Tell your church your dilemma and ask for prayer (God Always answers our cries for help)and you will see things change in your favor. *One thing I learned is “no contact”. If you must, ALWAYS have a mini tape recorder. If you don’t have a spiral notebook to journal all the incidents w/your wife-get one. Get a calendar/dayplanner-it’s easier to keep track of dates. *BE NICE. Turn her mind-screw back on her, it confuses a sociopath and they think they “have you under their thumb”and will get lazy and let things slip. Never have confrontations. Make her think you still care about her. Play on what little sympathy she MIGHT have. You could also move out of that county and after 6 months, (you should be able to document alot of her deviant behaviors by then) and get another lawyer, one that is familiar with sociopaths, and if you can’t find one>educate a lawyer you can trust. If you’re in another county it will make life a hell for her, and maybe she’ll give up. Mine has finally given up the house…I wore him down, and I’m asking for supervised custody, in hopes they order it, and he will just disappear out of our life, because sociopaths don’t like being “watched” in fear they’ll be figured out. PRAY. and have faith.>>> Remember, sociopaths HATE to lose, but GOD ALWAYS WINS.


I have a 2 1/2 year old son and I am divorcing his mother because of unchanged behavior, empty promises, lies, etc. She is currently sleeping with my step-brother, who, tried to have sex with me when we were younger. My wife knows about this as I shared with her that it made me uncomfortable at times when he was around. The kids, she has two from a previous marriage, are around when he is over. Friends of ours have turned the other way from her because of her behavior and have tried to keep me out of her range as I have been sucked back in many times by sweet talk and then non action to her promises. I am worried about my son and what his future will be like as she goes onto guy after guy. It has been her pattern in other relationships and she has been able to make me an accomplice to her dislike of her ex and then turned around in court and said that I was the reason her relationship with him was so bad. Her mother also exhibits the same behavior with men and I have heard horror story after horror story of the things she does to people. I have also been on the receiving end of her. What advice does anyone have in regards to having a child and family investigator and presenting my case to him?

Quantum Solace

I feel for this poor man and wish him the best. I’ve been separated from the monster from 13 years, legally divorced for 11 and it doesn’t end. As I’ve commented on these forums before, we are back in court for the third time (for a total of four years of legal battles now) and there is no end in sight. Much like Fran’s story (the first commenter), I am faced with exactly the same problems: a Sociopath with an equally Sociopath lawyer who crafts the lies and the attaccks for $275/hour. To boot, I now seem to have a [female] judge who is displaying much of the same characteristics as the duo from hell. She refuses to look at any of the hard evidence I present her with, instead, she asks him and makes a decision based on his “word” absent any proof. Imagine my predicament, having a case that involves the welfare and future of two children, decided on the “word” of a pathological liar! It would be funny if it weren’t so pathetically tragic. To add insult to injury, this judge has now labeled me as “a liar, unreliable and reckless.” How’s that for tragic irony?

Those of us who have been the victims of Socio/Psychopaths suffer double jeopardy: once at the hands of the monster and twice at the hands of the legal system which is completely uncaring and designed, it appears, to aid and abet on the abuse. Lawyers can be your worst enemies, I can attest to that. I was royally screwed by my divorce lawyer who decided to play the “I can bill more than you” game, went thru $8,000 in 3 months and wasn’t even capable of petitioning the court for child support for me and my children. Eventually I ended up having to give up custody because I could no longer support us. His own lawyer, a Psychopath of sorts, made a federal case out of everything in order to milk fees. At the end, he ran a bill in the double digits but couldn’t collect from his Psycho/Socio client, sued him and got a $10,000 judgment against him. Years later, his fees remained unpaid and he then attempted to have the title to my house (which was jointly owned) transferred to him in lieu of legal fees. However, that didn’t stop him from coming back a second time and now a third.

For this round, I had to spend a week interviewing lawyers who had no clue what I was talking about. If I pressed the issue, they became defensive and very patronizing, I could tell inmediately that they didn’t understand and would screw me. Finally, I was recommended to a lawyer who handles both divorces and criminal defense. He understood! Not only did he ask the right questions but I got the right answers to my own. He seems to know what I’m going thru. He also told me that this guy would never go away. It’s all in his hands now. I can only hope that he doesn’t change his mind/attitude now that he has my $5,000 retainer in his bank account, as the other did. I’ve also learned that they all promise but very seldom and few deliver.

You can’t make this stuff up, you just can’t! I keep saying that if it hadn’t happened to me and someone else told me [my] story, I’d think they’re lying.


Matt John,

Welcome to lovefraud ? !

I was trying to express to Mike last night – what you wrote above.. Psychopaths and empaths and all types of people share this universe together.

Im here to recognize them and learn the tools necessary to deal with and when possible remove myself from their presence in my life. Sometimes we have to be creative and clever when dealing with them in the workplace and family and when raising children with one – other times we can simply kick em to the curb and never look back. The choice is ours. It helps to be aware, educated, and pro-active with self-everything when dealing with a P/S/N so the interaction can be limited to none.

“hollowness” in society ( not “harmony” in society) I believe is what they experience while they are alive – with family, in the workplace, with a romantic partner, and with friends.


Matt John’s post contains a link to a commercial tech website:

‘some psychopaths can blend in, cisco ccnp, undetected, in a variety of surroundings, including corporate environments.


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