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Thread: Some questions about the following list describing sociopaths

  1. #1 Some questions about the following list describing sociopaths 
    Forum Ph.D. Raziell's Avatar
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    Sociopath Vs. Psychopath: There is a Difference - Yahoo! Voices - voices.yahoo.com Not sure if this list is accurate.

    Question 1: Can you still be a socio/psychopath if some of these are wrong?

    Question 2: With this given example of changes from the formula, will it still apply? Changes added with ():

    1. Sociopaths are very charming.
    2. Sociopaths can be extremely manipulative and will try to con you whenever possible.
    (Not whenever possible, only when needed to further ones goals)
    3. Sociopaths feel that they are entitled to everything.
    4. Sociopaths will lie continuously to get what they want. They can even sometimes manipulate a lie detector. (Only if feeling safe that they will be convincing)
    5. Sociopaths have no remorse, shame or guilt.
    6. Sociopaths will show love and happiness only when it serves their purpose. None of the feelings are genuine. (Can they think they are genuine while fooling themselves unintentionally?)
    7. Sociopaths have no room for love in their life.
    8. Sociopaths need to have excitement in their lives or live on the edge. (What if the need for excitement is replaced by its opposite, apathy?)
    9. Sociopaths have lack of empathy when their victims suffer pain that they have caused. (What if they do feel empathy BUT it stems from a selfish philosophical belief that "what if, in an alternate life - this would be me") so even if there is a CHANCE this will hurt them in return, nomatter how small the chance - they dont like to inflict pain at ALL just to cover ALL possible scenarios)
    10. Sociopaths believe that they are all mightier than tho, there is no concern on how their behavior impacts others.
    11. Sociopaths usually have a long history of juvenile delinquency as well as behavior problems.
    12. Sociopaths will never take blame for anything they have done to anyone no matter if it is family or friend. (What if they DO take blame often, just to strengthen their alibi or gain other peoples's trust through acting humane?)
    13. Sociopaths have many sexual partners and tend to act out many sexual acts.
    14. Sociopaths rarely stay in one place for a long time (home/work).
    15. Sociopaths will change themselves if they know it will keep them from being found out.

    Question 3(Cant seem to get the bold text off): If you dont take pleasure in causing other people pain at all, but all other points apply. Does it still make you a sociopath?

    Im worried that I may be a sociopath. But what if Im LYING and Im actually thrilled by the thought? Seriously though. If you match all these point BUT dont take ANY pleasure in causing other people pain, and you dont seek thrills but are rather apathetic. How does that change things?


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    has lost interest seagypsy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raziell View Post
    Sociopath Vs. Psychopath: There is a Difference - Yahoo! Voices - voices.yahoo.com Not sure if this list is accurate.

    Question 1: Can you still be a socio/psychopath if some of these are wrong?

    Question 2: With this given example of changes from the formula, will it still apply? Changes added with ():

    1. Sociopaths are very charming.
    2. Sociopaths can be extremely manipulative and will try to con you whenever possible.
    (Not whenever possible, only when needed to further ones goals)
    3. Sociopaths feel that they are entitled to everything.
    4. Sociopaths will lie continuously to get what they want. They can even sometimes manipulate a lie detector. (Only if feeling safe that they will be convincing)
    5. Sociopaths have no remorse, shame or guilt.
    6. Sociopaths will show love and happiness only when it serves their purpose. None of the feelings are genuine. (Can they think they are genuine while fooling themselves unintentionally?)
    7. Sociopaths have no room for love in their life.
    8. Sociopaths need to have excitement in their lives or live on the edge. (What if the need for excitement is replaced by its opposite, apathy?)
    9. Sociopaths have lack of empathy when their victims suffer pain that they have caused. (What if they do feel empathy BUT it stems from a selfish philosophical belief that "what if, in an alternate life - this would be me") so even if there is a CHANCE this will hurt them in return, nomatter how small the chance - they dont like to inflict pain at ALL just to cover ALL possible scenarios)
    10. Sociopaths believe that they are all mightier than tho, there is no concern on how their behavior impacts others.
    11. Sociopaths usually have a long history of juvenile delinquency as well as behavior problems.
    12. Sociopaths will never take blame for anything they have done to anyone no matter if it is family or friend. (What if they DO take blame often, just to strengthen their alibi or gain other peoples's trust through acting humane?)
    13. Sociopaths have many sexual partners and tend to act out many sexual acts.
    14. Sociopaths rarely stay in one place for a long time (home/work).
    15. Sociopaths will change themselves if they know it will keep them from being found out.

    Question 3(Cant seem to get the bold text off): If you dont take pleasure in causing other people pain at all, but all other points apply. Does it still make you a sociopath?

    Im worried that I may be a sociopath. But what if Im LYING and Im actually thrilled by the thought? Seriously though. If you match all these point BUT dont take ANY pleasure in causing other people pain, and you dont seek thrills but are rather apathetic. How does that change things?
    Sociopaths don't necessarily enjoy causing pain, they just don't care if the process of satisfying their own desires causes pain to others. Satisfying their own desires is paramount over all other things. They may even bring others joy from time to time in the process of achieving their own desires, but it is just a lucky (for the other person) consequence if they do.

    They simply do not care about how other people feel. No one else matters to them but themselves. Who they help or hurt along the way is merely a side effect of them obtaining their own goals.

    What an outsider sees as a thrill may not be perceived by the sociopath as a thrill. It may just be that a sociopath appears to others as being a thrill seeker. But it may just be that an outside observer seeks to understand a motivation for the behavior. And since a constant consequence of living as a sociopath is that a sociopath is always trying to evade detection which could lead to incarceration or even being killed, an outsider may see that as being the behavior of a thrill seeker.

    The reality is, that no one, no matter how well trained can make a definite determination of what another persons motivations are. And thrill seeking is a motivation. Most of the other characteristics are mostly behavior patterns, which are more easily verified.


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    Malignant Pimple shlunka's Avatar
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    I imagine that not all sociopaths are charming.
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    has lost interest seagypsy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shlunka View Post
    I imagine that not all sociopaths are charming.
    They are until you realize what they are. The charm they display is to make you trust them. It's how they manage to manipulate others. The are usually very social and are able to mingle in with just about any crowd. They are social chameleons. The people who are most susceptible to being preyed on by a sociopath is someone who is emotionally needy and has access to something that the sociopath wants, whether it is social connections, money, citizenship, status, or whatever. Paedophiles would fall into the category of being sociopaths. They prey on the naivety of children. Palm readers and so called psychics who claim they can speak to the dead scam people out of loads of money preying on their emotional need to contact someone that is at least believed to be dead.

    Not all sociopaths cause extreme damage, but some do. People don't often refer to the psychics as sociopaths because so many people say their prey ought to know better. But the reality is anyone can be tricked when their defenses are down. Anyone can be taken advantage of. Every human being has various degrees of sociopathy, some just more than others. Every person has every known mental illness, it is just that it is not treated as an illness unless the characteristic is abnormally pronounced to the point that it is disruptive or harmful to the individual or those they affect. As a species, we like to think we can weed out these bad extremes by labeling people as ill, and there may be some truth in it. But unless everyone is very much aware of what these characteristics are and make a consistent effort to avoid breeding with someone displaying the extremes, the extremes will continue to exist in our species.
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  6. #5  
    Forum Ph.D. Raziell's Avatar
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    One of the reasons I think being a sociopath
    /psychopath seems off is that most of the points are attributed to human nature in general. Everyone does this is various degrees.

    Doesent that mean psychopaths and sociopaths are simply more true to their human nature?
    A lie is a lie even if everyone believes it. The truth is the truth even if nobody believes it. - David Stevens
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  7. #6  
    has lost interest seagypsy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raziell View Post
    One of the reasons I think being a sociopath
    /psychopath seems off is that most of the points are attributed to human nature in general. Everyone does this is various degrees.

    Doesent that mean psychopaths and sociopaths are simply more true to their human nature?
    While I don't disagree that htey describe human nature, the unmentioned most important part to remember is that these people express these traits to an extreme that they cause harm to others and are considered disruptive at the very least, dangerous at the worst.

    Like I said, any mental illness is basically just extreme, generally perceived as unhealthy, expression of a particular set of human nature characteristics. Sociopathy can be argued to be one of our most important and earliest expressed human characteristics and is extremely necessary to ensure survival. If a newborn baby was too considerate of how tired or sick it's mother was, it could die from neglect. A baby just simply does not care what the desires of other people are. it wants food, it wants comfort, it wants entertainment and attention. And if you don't give it what it wants, it will find a way to make you give it. And its only recourse is usually to let out a loud annoying sound that no human being can tolerate for long periods, unless they are more sociopathic than the baby.

    The sociopathic traits tend to diminish as we grow and mature and become self reliant. The sense of entitlement gets replaced by personal accountability and responsibility, in most people. But for some, that entitlement attitude persists and if they cannot use the traditional methods of laying in one spot and screaming they figure out another way to manipulate others into giving them what they want.

    You will see that there is a sub culture of people, who literally feed off of society. They grow up on public assistance and they teach their children how to manipulate the system so that they can stay on public assistance too. I am not saying all people on public assistance are like this. Plenty are embarrassed to use it and do what it takes to improve themselves so they can be self-reliant again. But too many are sociopathic in their desire to live for free. And not all people with entitlement issues are on public assistance. There are the ones that manipulate wealthy friends into "loaning" them money and then never repaying it, or they take out loans from institutions with no intention to repay. We don't usually refer to them as sociopaths but the behavior fits.

    But clinical sociopath label is reserved for those who are so extreme that they will hurt even the ones closest to them, their own families, their own mother, their own children in order to get what they want. These are the EXTREMES I am talking about. I was married to one.
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  8. #7  
    Forum Ph.D. Raziell's Avatar
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    Thanks for your answer seagypsy
    A lie is a lie even if everyone believes it. The truth is the truth even if nobody believes it. - David Stevens
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  9. #8  
    AI's Have More Fun Bad Robot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by seagypsy View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Raziell View Post
    One of the reasons I think being a sociopath
    /psychopath seems off is that most of the points are attributed to human nature in general. Everyone does this is various degrees.

    Doesent that mean psychopaths and sociopaths are simply more true to their human nature?
    While I don't disagree that htey describe human nature, the unmentioned most important part to remember is that these people express these traits to an extreme that they cause harm to others and are considered disruptive at the very least, dangerous at the worst.

    Like I said, any mental illness is basically just extreme, generally perceived as unhealthy, expression of a particular set of human nature characteristics. Sociopathy can be argued to be one of our most important and earliest expressed human characteristics and is extremely necessary to ensure survival. If a newborn baby was too considerate of how tired or sick it's mother was, it could die from neglect. A baby just simply does not care what the desires of other people are. it wants food, it wants comfort, it wants entertainment and attention. And if you don't give it what it wants, it will find a way to make you give it. And its only recourse is usually to let out a loud annoying sound that no human being can tolerate for long periods, unless they are more sociopathic than the baby.

    The sociopathic traits tend to diminish as we grow and mature and become self reliant. The sense of entitlement gets replaced by personal accountability and responsibility, in most people. But for some, that entitlement attitude persists and if they cannot use the traditional methods of laying in one spot and screaming they figure out another way to manipulate others into giving them what they want.

    You will see that there is a sub culture of people, who literally feed off of society. They grow up on public assistance and they teach their children how to manipulate the system so that they can stay on public assistance too. I am not saying all people on public assistance are like this. Plenty are embarrassed to use it and do what it takes to improve themselves so they can be self-reliant again. But too many are sociopathic in their desire to live for free. And not all people with entitlement issues are on public assistance. There are the ones that manipulate wealthy friends into "loaning" them money and then never repaying it, or they take out loans from institutions with no intention to repay. We don't usually refer to them as sociopaths but the behavior fits.

    But clinical sociopath label is reserved for those who are so extreme that they will hurt even the ones closest to them, their own families, their own mother, their own children in order to get what they want. These are the EXTREMES I am talking about. I was married to one.
    Your responses about sociopaths is quite knowledgeable. But then I would expect that from anyone who's had a long term relationship with one.

    But can you differentiate between all 3 major categories of sociopath, the sociopath of course, the psychopath and narcissist?

    My own take is that a psychopath is a sociopath that's crossed the line and started killing, maiming or torturering people. The narcissist was born to be a sociopath, but for whatever reason they were raised to believe their life was all about them and they want everybody to know that.
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    has lost interest seagypsy's Avatar
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    I haven't really known any psychopaths (that I know of) and am unfamiliar with clinical narcissism but I will spend some time reading what I can about them. But I would take a guess that sociopathy may be the base for both psychopathy and narcissism. Though not necessarily. I can imagine a serial killer thoroughly caring how the victims feel. Sociopathy doesn't derive pleasure from causing others pain. They are just completely apathetic to any feelings other people may have and only take their feelings into consideration when it is relevant to getting what they want. Psychopaths may choose their victims based on how the victims feel about things or how the behavior of the victim makes them feel. If anything, they are probably extremely empathetic to others. But their motives are sadistic.
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  11. #10  
    AI's Have More Fun Bad Robot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by seagypsy View Post
    I haven't really known any psychopaths (that I know of) and am unfamiliar with clinical narcissism but I will spend some time reading what I can about them. But I would take a guess that sociopathy may be the base for both psychopathy and narcissism. Though not necessarily. I can imagine a serial killer thoroughly caring how the victims feel. Sociopathy doesn't derive pleasure from causing others pain. They are just completely apathetic to any feelings other people may have and only take their feelings into consideration when it is relevant to getting what they want. Psychopaths may choose their victims based on how the victims feel about things or how the behavior of the victim makes them feel. If anything, they are probably extremely empathetic to others. But their motives are sadistic.
    Here's one POV that shows some differences in comparison and a couple of short videos.

    Psychopath vs Sociopath - Difference and Comparison | Diffen

    They seem to think these conditions are treatable and I know there's not been much success with any kind of treatment.
    ================================================== ================

    Here's a very good POV, except they don't acknowledge that females can be narcissist. Other than that they hit the mark very well.

    Narcissist or Sociopath? What's the Difference? | Lisa E. Scott
    Last edited by Bad Robot; June 16th, 2013 at 03:07 PM.
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  12. #11  
    AI's Have More Fun Bad Robot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raziell View Post
    One of the reasons I think being a sociopath
    /psychopath seems off is that most of the points are attributed to human nature in general. Everyone does this is various degrees.

    Doesen't that mean psychopaths and sociopaths are simply more true to their human nature?
    Here's an interesting take on sociopathy. 2% of all people born are primary sociopaths on the bell curve. The rest of us will grow into our positions on the bell curve depending more on our environment and up bringing. They didn't say where the cut off on the bell curve the secondary sociopaths were, but I got the impression it has changed up and down depending on societies laws and how well they are enforced.

    Lake Chalice: Primary Sociopaths and Secondary Sociopaths
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    AI's Have More Fun Bad Robot's Avatar
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    How do you know if someone is a sociopath

    This is a very good page.

    The following link is a free .pdf format download of the most recommended book on sociopaths. Especially for people that have a sociopath in their lives. This is a must read to help you have a better life.

    http://www.pdf-archive.com/2011/11/2...-next-door.pdf
    Last edited by Bad Robot; June 16th, 2013 at 07:47 PM.
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    According to M. Scott Peck MD in his book length analysis of the psychological roots of human evil, "The People of the Lie", the diagnostic catagory of "narcissist" comes closest to being flat out evil. They will do anything, sacrifice anything, inorder to maintain their own self judgement of being without fault or blemish. He gives this example ; as a school psychiatrist he saw a teenaged boy and as is normal, after a few meetings asked to meet with his parents. He had heard some things from his patient that suggested stress at home so he suggested that perhaps they should engage in family counseling. The response from the parents, who were both well educated and well paid professionals, was "Oh no, its just our son, he is a bad seed and needs to be institutionalized."
    They were ready to throw away their own son rather than admit that they needed any improvement. That's evil, and that's narcissism.
    Narcissists do not necessarily cause any active damage to society at large. They just would see no reason not to do so. Sociopaths do damage society at large. They are concience-less criminals. Good example would be a career drug dealer, leg breaker or hitman. Psychopaths are all that plus being psychotic, usually getting direct pleasure from damaging others.
    None of these diagnostic catagories are limited to any particular level of intelligence, or place in the social order.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sealeaf View Post
    According to M. Scott Peck MD in his book length analysis of the psychological roots of human evil, "The People of the Lie", the diagnostic catagory of "narcissist" comes closest to being flat out evil. They will do anything, sacrifice anything, inorder to maintain their own self judgement of being without fault or blemish. He gives this example ; as a school psychiatrist he saw a teenaged boy and as is normal, after a few meetings asked to meet with his parents. He had heard some things from his patient that suggested stress at home so he suggested that perhaps they should engage in family counseling. The response from the parents, who were both well educated and well paid professionals, was "Oh no, its just our son, he is a bad seed and needs to be institutionalized."
    They were ready to throw away their own son rather than admit that they needed any improvement. That's evil, and that's narcissism.
    Narcissists do not necessarily cause any active damage to society at large. They just would see no reason not to do so. Sociopaths do damage society at large. They are concience-less criminals. Good example would be a career drug dealer, leg breaker or hitman. Psychopaths are all that plus being psychotic, usually getting direct pleasure from damaging others.
    None of these diagnostic catagories are limited to any particular level of intelligence, or place in the social order.
    Being a sociopath doesn't automatically make you a criminal and just because one doesn't have a concience doesn't mean they don't know right from wrong. But they all have problems with close personal relationships. If you haven't downloaded the .pdf file of the book "The Sociopath Next Door", please do. It's free and it's acknowledged as one of the best books on the subject and can help anyone that is currently in some kind of relationship with a sociopath.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bad Robot View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Sealeaf View Post
    According to M. Scott Peck MD in his book length analysis of the psychological roots of human evil, "The People of the Lie", the diagnostic catagory of "narcissist" comes closest to being flat out evil. They will do anything, sacrifice anything, inorder to maintain their own self judgement of being without fault or blemish. He gives this example ; as a school psychiatrist he saw a teenaged boy and as is normal, after a few meetings asked to meet with his parents. He had heard some things from his patient that suggested stress at home so he suggested that perhaps they should engage in family counseling. The response from the parents, who were both well educated and well paid professionals, was "Oh no, its just our son, he is a bad seed and needs to be institutionalized." They were ready to throw away their own son rather than admit that they needed any improvement. That's evil, and that's narcissism. Narcissists do not necessarily cause any active damage to society at large. They just would see no reason not to do so. Sociopaths do damage society at large. They are concience-less criminals. Good example would be a career drug dealer, leg breaker or hitman. Psychopaths are all that plus being psychotic, usually getting direct pleasure from damaging others. None of these diagnostic catagories are limited to any particular level of intelligence, or place in the social order.
    Being a sociopath doesn't automatically make you a criminal and just because one doesn't have a concience doesn't mean they don't know right from wrong. But they all have problems with close personal relationships. If you haven't downloaded the .pdf file of the book "The Sociopath Next Door", please do. It's free and it's acknowledged as one of the best books on the subject and can help anyone that is currently in some kind of relationship with a sociopath.
    Without reading the book, I'll make a guess they are talking about having "sociopathic traits", I am referring to flat out, meets DSM-IV criteria, sociopathic personality disorder. If they arn't criminals its because they have not been caught yet. I will grant that not all sociopaths are actually making a living at it.
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    AI's Have More Fun Bad Robot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sealeaf View Post
    Without reading the book, I'll make a guess they are talking about having "sociopathic traits", I am referring to flat out, meets DSM-IV criteria, sociopathic personality disorder. If they aren't criminals its because they have not been caught yet. I will grant that not all sociopaths are actually making a living at it.
    Your guess would be wrong, and there are many jobs in society that sociopaths are uniquely qualified for. They can be productive citizens, but you wouldn't want to be married to one or grow up in a family with at least one parent that's a sociopath.

    But what you said about narcissist is closer to the truth. The Roman Emperor Caligula being the classic example. It just wasn't safe being anywhere near that guy. If you could still get the original movie "Caligula" I'd recommend it. But you can only find a butchered copy these days that's not worth watching. The way to tell is the original is over 3 hours long and the cut version is less than 2 hours.

    Also, a psychopath is much worse than a sociopath. Pretty much all serial killers, mass murderers and spree killers are psychopathic. I think Hitler might qualify as a psychopath in the wrong place at the wrong time.
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