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The criminal brain

The Criminal Justice Degrees Guide website posted an article about the criminal brain. For the most part, the information is consistent with what research has shown about antisocial personality disorder and psychopathy. I hope this means that people pursuing criminal justice degrees are learning it.

Read 10 Incredible facts about the criminal brain.


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Donna, I agree that many of these things talked about in these ten “factoids” on this site sound like most of the research I have read (especially lately) about the differences in the brains between psychopaths and non-psychopaths, but I think that they are so simplistically put that it seems to make the case that these “poor criminals” didn’t have a choice, they were just born to be bad…and the one about the three year olds seems to me to give the impression that someway children could be tested and pre-determined who would become a criminal and who wouldn’t.

As most of us here know, while many violent psychopaths are criminals, many violent criminals are not psychopaths, and many psychopaths are not violent and stay on the good side of the law, even if they are a bit “shady.” Psychopathy, fortunately or unfortunately, as the case may be is not an “either-or” situation except for purposes of research and study, in which case in order to be diagnosed a psychopath a score of 30 or more on a PCL-R is necessary, but for OUR purposes as former victims a score of 29 or 28 or less is more than enough for us to say “I don’t want to be around this person, they are toxic and harmful to ME” and while that individual with a score of 28 would be labeled a “non psychopath” for purposes of research, for a relationship, they would be just as toxic, or maybe more so, than the person with a score of 38. So the EFFECTS of psychopathy or near-psychopathy level behavior can be toxic without being criminal.

I do wish that the “criminal justice system” (boy, is that an oxymoron!) would educate police, lawyers and judges more on the components of psychopathy, but not make it sound like the poor “brain damaged psychopath” needs more understanding, and that it isn’t his fault because he’s “brain damaged.”

Just MHO.

That article was very fascinating.

There is this scientist who researches the brains of psychopaths, and he learned later that HE in fact has the brain of a pscyhopath

He calls it the “warrior gene” and he makes an interesting case for nature vs nurture with regards to this.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cnV4RnWcmWo

It makes sense calling it the “warrior gene” because psychopaths I bet make the best soldiers, especially in the past. Old word wars were based on face-to-face murder and lack of fear, and I bet the psychopath gene helped warriors kill and be fearless on the battlefield, hence make it home to reproduce and pass down these genes.

I am not saying I think this gene is GOOD oh no no no. Just that it may have developed because it served a function in a dysfunctional world.

Panther, I agree with you, I have read that article and several books lately on the chemical and physical make up of our brains by researchers, and read several books by researchers working on doing brain scans and studies of psychopathic prisoners, etc. I agree that this “warrior” gene(s) _–there seem to be several genes connected not just one, and several different “levels” of this tendency to be “warriors” (fearless and aggressive) and there are some other aspects too, cultural etc. In many societies and cultures there are “coming of age” rituals where a young man goes through a ritual where he becomes a “man” and responsible for his own fate in the group. Our society today doesn’t have much in the way of this “coming of age” (usually at puberty and physical maturity) like the Native Americans or the Bantu did/do. Coming of age now is noted by joining a gang, or graduating from college, but it somehow doesn’t have the same cultural significance.

In some groups of young men today “coming of age” is the first arrest, or first trip to prison. In other areas of the world it is actually when you join the army or do your first murder.

That all said, we are responsible for our choices regardless of our genetics, just as a person with an alcoholic gene(s) who is more prone to drink/drug is still responsible for the choice to drink or not drink or drug or not drug and the behavior s/he does under the influence of these substances. I very well may have the alcoholic gene(s) (many in my family do) but I choose not to drink to any excess like my egg donor’s brother My Uncle Monster, did.

Yes I agree. Since my own father is an spath, I would be considered at risk. Ironically, getting to know him was the biggest deterrent to behaving like him. I grew up with my mother, hardly knowing my father. Truth be told, I have an interesting IQ/EQ balance. My IQ is well beyond genius and my EQ is in the autism range. However, watching my father hurt people, then listening as he tried to drill into me that, “You have the Parkour gene, and these are strong genes. You are just like me,” I became so repulsed and remember very vividly being around 14 years old and telling myself that IF indeed I had that gene, then HE was the LAST thing I ever wanted to be like. He used to say things like, “Just remember: I will be out of jail before you are out of the hospital,” and his favorite was, “I am going to levitate out of this chair and ricochet you off the wall!” I paid attention to how he used his intelligence to manipulate people. I could see exactly how he did it, and I knew without a doubt that I could likely have the same capacity. This made me really paranoid that I’d become something evil, like him. He made me sick.

Luckily, I think that the “levels” as you called it worked out okay in my case, maybe because of my mother’s calming genes or maybe just due to my being female I am able to function in a nice, friendly way among peers. I am very curious, though, if I would show up on a brain scan as a sociopath, because I am really wondering if willpower or the right upbringing can, in some cases, take an at risk situation and produce a decent human being despite what any brain scan says.

By the way, I am definitely capable of empathy, so I guess that rules psychopathy out. I did poorly on the EQ test because I had problems reading emotions on people’s faces. But when someone is crying, it’s pretty obvious, or when someone tells me how they feel, I immediately empathize with them. So, I don’t know what that means exactly. I had really considered Asperger’s, even though my nuts ex was the one who brought it up. He might have actually got it right though.

Dear Panther,

Your posts above resonate very much with me, and my P sperm donor was very much like yours apparently, only mine did put people in the hospital and in the grave…the high IQ which was used to manipulate people (in both my P sperm donor and my P offspring) is such a WASTE of raw talent and potential…

I didn’t know my P sperm donor at all until I was 18, I had only met him one time for a few minutes at 16. He snowed me though, and held out the promise of adventure and travel (and that materialized) and I fell for that like most teenagers would, but I paid the price for it. I escaped at almost 20, with my life, but that was all. I was wounded severely. Fortunately after age 21 I was NC with him until he died 40 years later. I always felt he was “out there” though, and a black cloud that hung over me.

Some psychopathic types are more violent than others, serial killers like Bundy and BTK…or more “mainstream” like Bernie Madoff. Some are just gang-member types or “Hells Angels” type bikers, or alcoholics that beat their wives but go to work every day…there is a tremendous variety of people without empathy. Some autistics have little or no empathy but are not out to hurt others, though they may hurt others without realizing it. Aspergers is a perfect example, but again, empathy is not an is or ain’t proposition but a SCALE of has little or none, and has a bit more but the majority of people (the middle of the Bell Curve) have an “average amount” with a few people having a LOT, maybe too much empathy to be healthy.

Not all people who are “victims” of psychopaths are “innocent” victims either (and I am not a “blame the victim” person) but sometimes two abusers “hook up” and the loser presents themselves as a “victim” when in fact they are a co-abuser who just happened to not be as successful as the abuser who WON that round. I’ve seen that frequently.

Those of us who are “more innocent” in our victimhood have also many times ALLOWED the continued abuse over and over and over, so must bear some responsibility in ALLOWING ourselves to be continually abused…so we are RESPONSIBLE for STOPPING our own abuse by getting out of the relationship.

Sure there is the Stockholm Syndrome and trauma bonds, but still we have CHOICES even then. We have to make the GOOD choices for our own welfare….even against the genetic, chemical, social or emotional pressure to continue the relationship. Lately I have thought so much about that little Afgan woman/girl who was sold as a “wife” to a Taliban fighter and he left her with his family who used her as a slave while he went off to fight, she escaped and went to her father who refused to take her in, then her uncle, same song, and then she was caught and her FIL and her Husband held her down, cut off her nose and ears and left her for dead. She eventually made it to the US where Time magazine put her on its cover and she received medical care to reconstruct her face. Her face haunts me. She had NO choice but to risk her life, and she did, and she made it out safely, but AT WHAT PRICE? What culture would devalue women so? Have NO empathy for their suffering or no consideration for their value as a human being?

I read an article though about her father who NOW claims love for his daughter and was claiming that SHE had made HIM suffer loss of face and he wanted PROTECTION from her husband’s family. I have no empathy for HIM.

What does “P sperm donor” mean? Paternal or?

P sperm donor is short for Psychopathic sperm donor (i.e. male DNA donor) LOL He didn’t earn the title father or daddy either. My step father who was a great guy was my “daddy” but he EARNED that term of endearment by being there for me from the time I was 3 until his death in 2005. Even now he is still with me and there for me, because if I wonder what to do, I can only stop and think, “What would Daddy tell me was the right thing to do?” I can always come up with the right answer by thinking what he would have advised. He was a wise and caring man with a big heart. He was also conned by my egg donor most of the time, but the one time she really physically hurt me, he pulled her off of me. I was 15 at the time.

Panther: I also have a father that is a spath. I also grew up with my mother with little influence from him, and getting to know him was probably the worst thing for me. I’m male, and I look exactly like him when he was younger. I’m 21 now.

I don’t know about my IQ, but I my EQ is very high. I put very little stock in these tests, though. I’m no longer afraid of becoming like him. I don’t even see it as possible anymore.

Panther and Oxy,
I suppose you could call it the “warrior gene” because they can kill without empathy, but it seems very inaccurate to me.

P’s are actually cowards. They do everything covertly because they don’t want to suffer the consequences of their actions. They will not take responsibility for anything. They cannot cooperate the way soldiers do. They are quite often loners because they can’t get along with anyone unless they are in charge. I just don’t see them as warriors. More like pansies or princesses that want everything handed to them.

Some, like my spath, lack a fear response, but as we saw in the letter he wrote to God, he has fear.

Near and Panther,

I don’t have a lot of confidence in the EQ (EI) tests either as most of it is “self report” and I actually think we don’t have an objective opinion of our own behavior very often. LOL I know I didn’t and probably still don’t! LOL

Hi Near. Well, I don’t know about the tests either. I really don’t have a lot in common with my father. It’s clear that our minds have a similar way of functioning, but our *motives* are very different (this makes a HUGE difference). I think upbringing has a lot to do with it. I agree that getting to know my father had a huge impact on me, in many ways very negative. First of all, for me to even be worried that I could turn out evil meant I had to have seen evil first, which is something I hadn’t witnessed until I started getting to know my father when I was around 11. Then of course the abuse from him in many ways set me up to get stuck with an spath, because I TOOK IT so much from my father, always telling myself that this is my dad and I should try to make it work, cause he’s family. Ultimately, this meant I forced myself to stay in an abusive cycle with him for a long time, all because he was my dad. So, I think this made me vulnerable to a romantic relationship with an spath, because the “cycle” was something that had seemed “normal” to me for many years. Well, no, it never seemed NORMAL, but I was pre-conditioned for it.

So, Ox Drover, YES he is my P sperm donor too!!! Glad I learned that word from you. The last thing I ever said to my father included that just because he provided 50% of my DNA didn’t mean he was my father. He didn’t raise me. My step-dad, who is a much better man and isn’t psychologically sick, raised me. It was very hard to finally cut off my father. I tried for many years to make it work. But that was 3 years ago and I haven’t turned back even once. I cannot even have a phone conversation for 5 minutes with that man without it turning into something unhealthy, so he’s dead to me.

Panther, Sky,

Actually, there was a study (I forget who conducted it – so give me a while to recall the details…..) about the performance of Ps in wartime combat. I believe they focused on RAF fighter pilots and one or two other groups. Interestingly, the conclusion was that Ps end up doing very poorly in battle situations. As far as I can remember, one of the reasons for this is that they were very poor “team players,” and ended up repeatedly putting their comrades in danger – especially in situations that required a higher level of group cohesion. So perhaps somewhat counter-intuitively, the last person you want beside you in a foxhole is a pscyhopath!

Skylar, about the warrior gene topic, I agree with you. BUT if an spath really did end up in battle, they’d be a machine. My ex was similar to yours: coward. Anyone who cannot so much as feed themselves without creating an entire host of lies is pretty pathetic. However, he was always getting into bar fights, street fights, every kind of fight. He watched that movie Fight Club and thought he was Tyler Durden. A lot of people feared him, because he had a reputation in town as being a big, bad heartless fighter (he’s 6’3″ and built like a tank). And he told me that when he fought, he was brutal. He said that in the heat of a fight, he wouldn’t think twice before ripping someone’s face off or shoving a shard of glass through their eye. He said that he’d just “see red” and wouldn’t stop until everything was destroyed. That might be one facet of this dynamic psychological issue, because it definitely seemed like “the warrior gene” the way it manifested in him. Could be different for each spath.

Constantine: I definitely don’t want an spath beside ME if I ever end up in combat. But they might make a great special forces lone ranger type. The military very much wanted my father in the Seals because he had such a high IQ and propensity for self-sufficiency towards whatever his goal is. Basically, he’d do anything and find a way to reach his aim, no matter what kind of crap he had to pull.

But I totally agree. BAD team players!

Oh, and by the way, I meant wars of old ages! When people just charged at each other with swords 🙂

Constantine, I remember reading that as well…but CRS can’t remember where.

Ps do seem more aggressive, and sometimes their lack of conscience and lack of awareness of consequences or potential consequences makes them take unnecessary risks which put themselves and others at risk. They can’t always be trusted to follow orders either.

Remember that group of US soldiers that were shooting the civilians in the middle east conflict now and keeping fingers as trophies?…I think they or some of them anyway were Psychopaths, that is the kind of thing a P would do…shoot an unarmed civilian, take pix with the bodies, and then cut their fingers off for trophies. War and battle conditions give the opportunity for that kind of P behavior to come out more I think, as well as to “objectify” the enemy as less than human. The Us vs. them mentality in which the other is fair game.

Yet, they know that is not so, but the pack mentality of several “bad boys” feeding off each other in a situation where there is a good chance of getting away with that kind of behavior fosters it in young men who might never otherwise participate in such a thing. War is not a “nice” thing. Under any circumstances.

Panther, I am glad that you are NC with your sperm donor, that is the only way to deal with a toxic person, there is no reasoning with them and DNA is NOT A REASON TO ACCEPT ABUSE. I used to think it meant you HAD TO, but I know now that it does not.

Also, whenever people get too preoccupied with genetics and the “criminal brain,” it’s well to remember that the greatest crimes of the twentieth century were almost entirely the result of social, ideological and historical forces. And as a healthy corrective to any overly entusiastic school of “genetic determinism,” one need look no further than Nazi Germany. Indeed, unless one assumes that the hundreds of thousands of SS men, “Police Battalions” and “Nazi death squads,” etc. all shared the “P Gene” or the “criminal brain,” then their atrocities clearly show that it IS possible to turn men into the worst kind of sadistic monsters – COMPLETELY IRRESPECTIVE of genetic factors.

Ox

First of all, I thought an spath and a P were the same thing, or? Because if a P is like a more violent version of an spath, then my ex was probably a P, I think. He put a kid in a coma in high school when he smashed his face in with a hammer, and he almost killed another kid when he slammed his face into a heater. If there is a “psychopath” version of the spath which is more violent, this sounds like it might be the case.

About the DNA and accepting abuse, YES! It was hard as a young woman at 25 to finally figure this out after years of “chances” that for the life of me I couldn’t turn into something good.

My mom took a while to get on board. She told me for years that I HAD to speak to him and try, because he was my father. I told her that as long as he is breathing, I will never feel fully safe or relaxed in this world, and that I looked forward to the die he finally died so that I could feel safe and breath again. She told me that I am so cold to say this about my own father (she has a point). Yet this is completely true. As long as he lives, I can feel him out there somewhere, and I am afraid. Now there are two of them in my rear view mirror and I feel them both. My mother finally came to me one day after hearing something on the radio about abusive parents, etc. She said that she realized she had been teaching her daughter to accept abuse in the name of love or any other thing. There is no excuse for it. None. She finally told me that she supports my decision to never speak to him again, and she has stuck by that. My ex told me that if a woman allows it to happen, then she deserves it. Oh, gawd, I am so sick of him right about now I could just puke.

Let’s all talk about kittens for awhile. I am sick of these spaths and Ps and pedophiles and crazies. Once my life had none of this. Now this has taken my life from me. I miss feeling safe and okay and not worrying that my own naivety could get me killed by someone claiming to love me. I am gonna go take a bath and then a walk. I don’t wanna hear the word spath or psychopath for at least 24 hours. I’ll come back later. I need to clear my head of all these memories.

Toodles for now

Constantine, great point, esp since I am in Germany right now 🙂

Okay, I’m outa here for tonight.

Tschuess

Dear Panther,

The terms psychopath and sociopath and “anti-social personality disorder” are essentially talking about the same thing, though there is some debate about what the term should be.

Dr. Robert Hare uses psychopathy and so that is the word I am most comfortable with, but “a rose by any other name smells the same” and a P or an S or ADP all STINK.

I agree with you about not having to have anything to do with someone no matter what the DNA relationship is. I’m glad that your mom saw the light eventually and validated you.

What we do when we tell someone that the “should” form a relationship with X because of Y, is that we are INVALIDATING their feelings.

That is something that is common with us (former victims) too is that our friends say “you should just get over this and move on” but it isn’t so easy, it takes time, thought and work to heal. It isn’t just a “paper cut” it is a major wound to our SELVES. People who just try to “go on like nothing happened” (my egg donor’s mantra is “let’s just pretend none of this happened”–YEA, SHE EVEN SAID THAT!) THAT DOES NOT WORK.

Glad you are getting out and taking a walk. I think I will do the same thing, good idea! (((hugs)))

Panther, Oxy,

I’ll have to find that study somewhere… But I seem to recall that the Ps did poorly on the “go it alone,” commando stuff as well. Something about the inability to calibrate subtle risk factors, I think. Also, without true patriotism and love of country, who do you think would be the first to “give up the goods” under enemy interrogation?!

Constantine,
if you read the book “Ponerology”, it postulates that many ideologies are simply usurped by spaths and turned into evil mechanisms.

Even ideas such as “national pride” which should be a good thing, can be warped into an “us vs. them” mentality. Spaths are the bad apple that spoils the whole cart.

Constantine,

My P son patrick is all about the “criminal’s code” of don’t snitch. Funny, he lies like a rug, but he gets so BENT OUT OF SHAPE if anyone lies TO him. LOL The rules do not apply to him, but to everyone else. He still hates me because I turned him in to the cops when he was 17 for robbing our friend’s business….and he killed his girlfriend when she ratted them/him out when they got caught in their stupid credit card scam which was BOUND to get found out….but I have no doubt that he would be the FIRST to rat someone else out if he thought he could do it and not get caught by the guy he ratted out. There is NO HONOR AMONG THIEVES….that is the thing the cops use all the time to get people to turn on each other—the first one to squeal gets the deal.

Son P always had to have an audience for his crimes, though, so was not good about keeping his mouth shut to his buddies, so they squealed on him…even volunteered to squeal on him, went to the cops didn’t even wait for them to come to them…and he never figured it out. But I will say he has “balls” though. I have the letter he wrote to son C after the gig was up and the DIL and the TH-P were arrested and he was trying to get my son C to “forgive and forget” and “still be friends” with the TH-P LOL even though the guy had tried to kill him and had been screwing his wife. LOL Son P did NOT get it that “normal” people don’t just “pretend that nothing happened.” But at the same time,. he is still bearing me a grudge for turning him in when he was 17 (he is over 40 now). One set of rules for him, another for others.

That would not make a good soldier, a good friend, or a good brother for sure.

Their lack of prediction of other’s behavior based on what THEY think the rules should be is another problem as well. Because SOME OF THEM don’t truly know how others think, they have a big problem in knowing what someone else will do. Their lack of empathy cuts both ways, benefits them in some ways, but hurts them in others.

Sky,

I’ll make sure to take a look at that book….

Oxy,

Interesting thoughts about your son. I think you’re right that there is a certain blind spot on their part when it comes to predicting how other people will react in a given situation; because, indeed, they can only calculate things from their own empathy-lacking standpoint!

Constantine,

I saw that in my P sperm donor, he was VERY bright intellectually, but no EQ at all…he would BRAG and BRAG to reporters how SMART he was “I’m the smartest person in the world, smarter than X, Y or Z ” (and name various geniuses) and “No one can understand me because the rest of the human race is too stupid” etc. (yea those are quotes!) and he did not GET IT that it did not endear him to others, or impress them with how wonderful he was or make them ENVY him. He so wanted others to envy him, to think he was so smart (he was IQ wise) but yet he despised everyone and looked down on them, so their adoration was “worthless” because THEY were worthless in his opinion. He was also very aggressive, threatening, and wanted people to FEAR him as well as adore him.

One man who is an internationally recognized conservationist stood up to him when he threatened to kill the man and just said “go ahead, but I will not do what you want” it frustrated him so bad he was gobsmacked that someone would NOT be afraid to die and would look him in the eye. He did not kill the man, and in fact, because of his threat, he was thrown out of that country, lock, stock and barrel. He bad mouthed that man in his autobiography and tried to say the man was an idiot, but fortunately the man is so well recognized that my P sperm donor didn’t do the man any harm in his reputation. In fact, the man and I are quite close friends and he is one of the people who has been so supportive of me about my situation with my P sperm donor. He is quite elderly now and almost blind, but we still keep in contact by e mail. (with large type!) I had hoped to go to see him but just don’t have the money for the trip and the area he lives in is not a safe area of the world right now either so guess I won’t be able to make the trip, though I wanted my son D to meet this world famous and wonderful man. Oh, well….such is life.

It took me a long time to come to grips with the “bad mouthing” that my P sperm donor did me in person and in print…but I finally FINALLY realized that the things he said didn’t hurt me if I didn’t let them. No one who knew him would believe a word he said and anyone who knew me would NOT believe a word he said about me (there is probably one or two exceptions to that but still that only hurts me if I allow it) I think my half brother, his clone probably believes him, but that isn’t a relationship I want anyway.

A few years ago a man who was doing an article about him called me and I told him the truth…and I got a nasty e mail from the sperm donor. My husband who knew him well (they had been business partners for a short period of time) fired off an e mail back to him and said “look I KNOW WHERE THE BODIES ARE BURIED, LEAVE MY WIFE ALONE there is no statute of limitations on murder” and that was the LAST I heard from him. He did publish a “vanity” biography and an autobiography AFTER that though. Both of which were LAUGHABLE for their lack of quality (he privately published them and funded their publication.) LOL What was so funny to me about them, though, was that HE THOUGHT that anyone would A) be interested in reading the drivel, and B) that it would be believable. He just did not get it that it was so outlandish that NO ONE with an IQ over 45 would believe what he wrote. That not getting how others think because it is not how THEY think I think gives them a bit of a disadvantage in many cases.

My P son is SO arrogant and thinks he, like P donor is so “smart” and the cops so DUMB that he didn’t even try to cover up his crimes, but bragged about them. DUH???? Was arrested the next day after the girl was murdered because he had told everyone who would listen that A) he intended to do it and when and how and B) afterward, that he had DONE it. When she turned up missing, DUH? He was arrested. They did find the body and did have witnesses, they did find the gun, and it was under his bed. Go straight to jail, do not pass go, do not collect $200. (head shaking here) So who is DUMB? The cops? My P son? Well I don’t have to be a genius to figure that one out.

Oxy,

Yes, it’s funny how many Ps and Ns seem almost like they have a natural “buzz” from simply being themselves! Sometimes I wish I felt that way too – just to walk around and savor the natural high of being Constantine!

Actually, when I have four or five 16 ounce beers (very seldom these days), I suppose I do sort of feel like that. So whatever I’m reading or thinking about just comes flowing out of my mouth, and me and whomever I’m at the bar with are just the most interesting people in all the world! Yes, wouldn’t it be great to feel like that all the time?! Unfortunately, one invariably wakes up the next morning with the gnawing headache, accompanied by the realization that an entire evening was irreparably wasted in talking nonsense!)

Nevertheless, all the Ns I know are like that pretty much 24/7. In other words, they just walk around with the “me buzz” all the time – and are likewise often surrounded by people who want to partake in the vicarious glow of the “me buzz”! However, it seems that I am forever barred from that dubious pleasure (other than on those bi-annual drinking bouts!), as I find being me by and large an uninteresting chore! (haha)

Still, the only thing I find more tiresome than myself, are the Narcissists who are technically even more tiresome than I am, and yet are completely unaware of this fact! So how is it right that one can be a mindless bore, and yet walk around feeling a drunken ecstasy over the fact that one is a mindless bore! I don’t know, but I sure as hell don’t think it’s fair!

At any rate, Oxy, it’s a good thing you spent most of your life away from the P sperm donor. Speaking of which, when did he and your mom split up? When you were still little? Did you ever hear about the dynamics between those two? I wonder what in the hell that relationship was like!…..

Dear Constantine,

She split with him when I was 3 months old. They had married when he was 18 and she 16 (she was teaching school then with 1 semester of college behind her) during WWII, She came home to have me just before she turned 18 and then 3 months later went back to join him at his base and he was in the base hospital with an STD which “he caught off a toilet seat” (he said) when she found out he was lying about that, she left him and came home, bringing me. I vaguely remember seeing him when I was about 2, but she remarried when I was 3 and my step father adopted me. I didn’t even meet Sperm donor until I was 16 when he popped through town. I went to live with him and go on African adventures as a wild life photographer and lived with him 2 yrs. THAT was an experience.

They were both so young at the time they were married I’m not sure what the dynamics were. I realize now though that she had my step father convinced she was Mother Teresa though. I think she ruled the roost one way or another. I didn’t realize it at the time though.

Yea, I’m glad I didn’t grow up with him. His family were pretty good people, his P mom was dead, and his dad, a country doctor and his step mom were nice people and I spent time with them. His brother was a country doc and I spent a little time with him. His uncles and cousins are/were great folks and I am still in touch with them. They gave me a sense of family and now without any maternal family left to speak of, that was important to me. They recognize him as “not nice” but really don’t understand S/P-ism.

My experience too is that many of these very narcissistic people are either living in fantasy land or they are very angry all/most of the time. This pedophile “preacher” that I posted the link to the other day was always ANGRY about something it seemed. I also remembered today he used to teach school as well. Gosh, I hate pedophiles! I knew I never liked him, just didn’t know why! LOL

Hi Oxy,
Your p-sperm donor sounds like my p-friend. Always angry at someone/something…everyday and it gets to be a drag listening to it! How they are just so smart and everyone else is just so stupid! It’s amazing…lololol.

I just got a new library card for the town I live in. I went into the library and was browsing and I reached out and took a book from the shelf..Never heard of this author before: gabriel garcia marquez and the book was one hunderd years of solitude. OMG! I’ve never read a book like this before!! I stayed up til 1am reading, just could not put it down. If you have not read it, check it out it’s so good. 🙂 I like to pass on good books.

Ana, I’ll check it out. Were’nt you the one who recommended “half broke horses?” That was a GREAT book, I sent it to a friend of mine whenI was done with it.

Oxy,
Yes, I loved that book too! The next one (or the first one, I read them in reverse and glad I did..lol)was the Glass Castle, by the same author. It’s about Lily’s daughter..good lawd…There was something wrong with her mentally.

This one though, is extraordinary!! My husband is going to read it too. I said to him, now that I’m done reading it. It’s like one big long sentence!! LOL

I also just finished The Glass Castle….it was awesome! Yea, STRANGE relationships and great writing though. I couldn’t put either one down! Can’t wait to check out that book you just mentioned. My friend in Virginia and I send books back and forth to each other. We like the same kind…if you liked Glass Castle, you need to read the first three books by Ferrol Sams, he is a doctor in Georgia, I think he wrote his last book in 2007 that I know of, but he wrote 9 or 10 and all are GREAT, the first three are and must be read in order, “Run With the Horsemen,” it is about a boy growing up on a plantation in Georgia in 1930s. If you have bladder control problems wear a diaper when you read it though, cause you will laugh out loud so many times you will wet yourself. LOL I think Sams is better than Hemingway and a lot of other writers that are very famous. He knows his subject, and is very literate as well (I actually had to look up some words!) but he will HIT YOU OUT OF THE BLUE with something you are not expecting and you will laugh out loud! The scenes and people he describes are so vivid. Just like the author of Glass Castle.

I reread those first three books from time to time so keep copies here and will not let them go. The second and third books take the boy to college, to med school, to WWII and back to med school. Thanks for sharing that Ana.

one/joy_step_at_a_time

Ana and Oxy – I read ‘Love in the Time of Cholera’. He has a special voice, a voice of bravery and honesty; Marquez isn’t a Nobel Prize winner in literature for nothing!

Oxy,
Thanks! I wrote it down and I’ll get it from the library.

One Joy Step,
Yes, I saw that on the front cover of the book. one hundred years of solitude. sounds nice doesn’t it??? LOL

I have one more book to read and then I’ll get the one you mentioned One Joy Step, and Oxy’s too. I LOVE to read!

one/joy_step_at_a_time

yes ana, it really really does.

one/joy_step_at_a_time

Ana and Oxy – have you read any Kaye Gibbons, Barbara kingsolver or Leslie Marmon Silko?

One Joy Step,
I’ve read Kingsolver, but not the others. Thanks for that info. I’ll write it down..boy all of sudden..I have a book club for myself!! Thank you 🙂

one/joy_step_at_a_time

ana – oh oh, you’ve opened the lovely box:

Leslie Marmon Silko – Ceremony (always think Hens should read this one, too.)

Kaye Gibbons is a southern gothic writer: I have read everything she has written I think. I especially like Ellen foster, and A Virtuous Woman. I gave Ellen foster to both my mom and gmom years ago and they were both very touched by the story.

I likes Animal Dreams best. And she is writing on food now, also.

Michael Pollen – A place of my own (a treatise on small architecture and heart)

John O’Donohue – conamara blues (poetry)
Lynn Crosbie – Liar (poetry)

One Joy Step,
Ohhhhh, boy! I’m writing them all down. Thanks for the reading suggestions. I’m sure I’ll love them all…I’ll let you both know when I’ve read them, one, by one, by one lolol.

One Joy Step,
I must confess, I love Virginia Woolf. Ah she SEE’S people as they really are..lol. Moments of Being is a good one and also The Years…I go back to her books when I need solice.

one/joy_step_at_a_time

you know ana, I haven’t read much Virginia Woolf, except some short stories in uni english.
Michael Pollen’s book is in the tradition of ‘room of ones own’ and thoreau’s ‘walden’.

I read “Love in the time….” but gosh it has been so long ago since I read it….odd book really, but I liked it. I like some way out authors. Been concentrating mostly on Non-fiction lately though, but have to take a “good fiction” break every so often. I’m a book a holic if there ever was one…it is a wonder my house doesn’t fall down from the weight of books, but I am sending some I love to some friends and giving others away locally…trying to “down size” my “stuff”

One, your new “roomie” sounds interesting…taking in a uni student?

Hey, gang, instead of the usual Saturd’y nite par-tay, we are having book club meeting tonight!

one/joy_step_at_a_time

oxy – she is a post doctorate scholar coming from overseas to do research.

the only thing i know about virginia wolfe is Elizabeth Taylor’s movie……i am currently reading a book someone here on the blog suggested ‘a general therory of love’ it is very interesting and well written…This afternoon i went to the movie and saw ‘the help’ it was ok….
This fricken heat continues to be very oppresive 108 today..we now have broken all records as the hottest summer.. it is so dry I have lost so many trees and plantings despite my constant watering…..but I am doing very well emotionally – i have no desire for romance or companionship…i have a hand full of good people in my life..i am lucky….

Oxy,
I hope that doesn’t mean we are OLD!!

I love me a book club!! LOL your house falling over…GET to the library. I can’t afford to buy all these books so I will get them from the library. I love the smell of a good book!

Hens,
That movie was AWFUL!! Ugh…what wretch and wich. It had nothing to do with the real Virginia Woolf.

I saw the Help too. I liked the book and the movie.

Wow, 108 OMG, I’d melt. Stay cool in the pool..nekkid!

Hens, it has cooled off a bit here, but still miserable….spent yesterday and today getting the diesel truck to run….clogged fuel injectors but D is not so much a diesel mechanic so he was tearing his hair out before he got it fixed and I was “worried” it would cost a fortune. He actually went down the road and talked to “grandpa” the old man neighbor, who as senile as he is, has forgotten more about diesels than most men will ever know. It turned out to be an easy fix, just actually results of clogged injectors so I feel better. Fixed it for labor and a few bucks for cleaning fluids. LOL

I know what you mean about the dry, we have dead trees all around us, so will see if the fire wood guy wants to come cut them for the wood.

Want to get the truck fixed so I can go to the HEARING on August 31st for the pedophile preacher….I’ve decided to go to the court hearing. I don’t have to say anything. but I will just sit there and smirk! I did a bit more research today and I was reminded that he used to teach school.

Oh, one of our local towns now puts all it’s outstanding warrants and ALL MUG SHOTS on the internet and the local paper publishes a “Mug Shots” news paper that sells at the local convenience stores for a buck with mug shots of everyone locally who has been arrested. I already saw one of my cousin’s bad boy sons on the mug shots web site. I wish my county would do that, heck I wish EVERY COUNTY in the US would do that. Would sure make back ground checks worth something. Also a bit of the exposure for their crimes isn’t all that bad either. PUBLIC RECORDS!!!!!

Dear Ana,

Yes, I was forced several years ago to see “Who’s afraid of Virginia Woolf” at a Canadian theater. For what it’s worth, I have to say that it was one of the more deeply traumatizing experiences of my life! Indeed, it was basically three hours of unmitigated agony sitting there in the audience! Of course, I’m not a psychotherapist, but in my opinion, that play could only have been the result of a profoundly disordered and neurotic mind! (And the movie is mild compared to seeing it in person!)

At any rate, I wonder what would have been the reaction had such a work been shown to an English audience during, say, the “Restoration Years”? I’m not sure, but I’ll bet the actors and writer would have been chased straight out of London – or tarred and feathered on the spot!

Dear Oxy,

Interesting about the relationship between your P Sperm Donor and your Egg Donor… Actually, the reason I brought it up in the first place is that your Egg Donor seems to have a pretty forceful personality herself (i.e., she “ruled the roost” with your stepdad, as you say). So it is curious that both of your parents have the the “stubborn and strong-willed gene”! With Ps, they often seem to seek out someone a bit more meek and malleable. But there are exceptions. And maybe in this case he saw your mom as a “challenge”?!

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