Understanding Sociopaths and Psychopaths

Breaking down misconceptions of what sociopathy and psychopathy is will help bring closure to a lot of people.

Sociopaths and psychopaths have been over sensationalized by mass media, and are usually portrayed as being serial killers and stalkers. While some are dangerous, it’s only if they have the following three things:

  • High vulnerability genes
  • Specific brain patterns
  • Early abuse or abandonment

Many sociopaths/psychopaths are pro-social: someone who seems to live within the norms of society but lacks empathy, which causes emotional damage to those around them. Because of their charm, it can be hard to realize you have sociopaths or psychopaths in your life. Some of them are doctors, lawyers, politicians, entertainers, your boss, your parents, siblings, children, and spouses.

As with many things, sociopathic and psychopathic behavior exists on a spectrum that can range from minor offenses to criminal behavior. While there’s no cure for sociopathy and psychopathy, intervention and therapy can help them manage their condition, and in some cases, prevent abusive behavior.

While I am not trying to diagnose anyone, after watching this video, I better understand the disconnect narcissists, sociopaths, and psychopaths have with their emotions. Especially after listening to 13:33, where he talks about relationships and how he feels differently towards people. He explained how he doesn’t like or love someone as others do and how hard this can be on a relationship. When people find out he cannot return their feelings, they feel secondary. His words hit home because it made me understand interactions I’ve had with people in the past that have a long history of emotionally abusive behavior.

I think it is important that we learn to recognize disorders, so we know how to safely interact with people who have them or safely disconnect from them. It’s crucial for the people that have these disorders to understand themselves and their impact on others, so they can get the help they need. I’m glad he did this interview because I think many can get closure — by either understanding why they are “different”, understanding why their relationship fell apart or helping them understand interactions they had with others in the past.