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Thread: Letter from a psychopath

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    Default Letter from a psychopath

    Saw this and thought it was interesting: (http://www.twitlonger.com/show/dh5l3q)

    For the people who ask me if I ever get emails from psychopaths:

    message: Dear Jon,

    I just saw your interview on Australia's ABC 7:30 report on 'The Psychopath Test' and wanted to share my experience. I hope that it can remain confidential for the time being, seeing as it is quite personal.

    But, when I was 19 (I'm 26-27 now) I went into long-term therapy - for psychopathy.

    My case was rather unusual in that I self-referred. The mental health agency had not had a walk-in of this kind before. In the lead up, I had found myself becoming overwhelmed with a predatorial instinct that I could not shake - I'd sit, watching crowds of people go by, driven to mania by what I saw as their limitless inferiorities. Plans were set that, once enacted, would be very difficult to walk back from.

    Nevertheless, the decision to go to therapy was one I had taken with some considerable agony, given that I saw this as putting myself 'on the radar' so to speak, and thus making it considerably more difficult to 'act out my nature' as I saw it.

    I undertook a lengthy psychological examination, and the psychiatrist conducting it wrote some pretty stark conclusions devoid of any optimistic prognosis.

    My initial forays into therapy did not go well. Overwhelmed with mistrust, concerned at being maniuplated, and uncomfortable with the idea of being 'managed' rather than 'cured', I left on multiple occassions for some periods of time.

    After chewing through several therapists, the director of the agency finally took me on herself, and to our mutual surprise we got along extremely well.

    To make a long story short, after years of setbacks, frustrations, resentments and suspicion, I began to make considerable progress.

    Four years later, with sessions no less frequent than once or twice a week, I came out of therapy unrecognizable from when I went into it.

    Yes thearapy was transformative, though it is possible to overstate its impacts. I will always see the world through different lenses to much of the rest of the world. My emotional reactions are different, my endowments are impressive in some respects, not so in others, much like other people.

    It is also the case that, being 'normal' takes a degree of energy and conscious thought that is instinctive for most, but to me is a significant expenditure of energy. I think it analogous to speaking a second language. That is not to say I am being false or obfuscating, merely that I will always expose some eccentric traits.

    So why am I writing all this to you?

    Well, from someone who is both psychopathic and treated, there are many fallacies about psychopaths with which I am deeply cynical. Unfortunately psychopaths themselves do themselves no favors, as the label given to them plays into their ego over generously - 'If we are born that way' psychopaths reason, 'then it is not wrong for us to be as we are, indeed we are the pinnacle of the human condition, something other people demonize merely to explain their fitful fears'.

    We are neither the cartoon evil serial killers, nor the 'its your boss' CEO's always chasing profit at the expense of everyone else. While we are both of those things, it is a sad caricature of itself.

    We continue be to characterized that way, by media, by literature, and by ourselves, yet the whole thing is a sham.

    The truth is much, much more complex, and in my view, interesting.

    Psychopaths are just people. You are right to say that psychopaths hate weakness, they will attempt to conceal anything that might present as a vulnerability. The test of their self-superiority is their ability to rapidly find weaknesses in others, and to exploit it to its fullest potential.

    But that is not to say that this aspect of a psychopaths world view cannot be modified. These days I see weaknesses and vulnerabilities as simple facts - a facet of the human condition and the frailties and imperfections inheritent in being human.

    At the same time it is true that my feelings and reactions to those around me are different - not necessarily retarded - just different. It is the image of psychopaths as something not quite human, along with espersions as to their natures, that prevent this from being identified.

    So how to explain these 'different' feelings?

    Well, lets look at what (bright) psychopaths are naturally quite exceptional at... We are good at identifying, very rapidly, extreme traits of those around us which allows us to discern vulnerabilities, frailties, and mental conditions. It also makes psychopaths supreme manipulators, for they can mimick human emotions they do not feel, play on these emotions and extract concessions.

    But what are these traits really? - Stripped of its pejorative adjectives and mean application, it is a highly trained perception, ability to adapt, and a lack of judgment borne of pragmatic and flexible moral reasoning.

    What I'm saying here is that although those traits can very easily (even instinctively) lead to dangerous levels of manipulation, they do not have to.

    These days I enjoy a reputation of being someone of intense understanding and observation with a keen strategic instinct. I know where those traits come from, yet I have made the conscious choice to use them for the betterment of friends, aquaintences, and society. People confide in me extraordinary things because they know, no matter what, I will not be judging them.

    I do so because I know I have that choice. After years of therapy I am well equipped to act on it, and my keen perception is now directed equally towards myself.

    Its true that I do not 'feel' guilt or remorse, except to the extent that it affects me directly, but I do feel other emotions, which do not have adequate words of description, but nevertheless cause me to derive satisfacton in developing interpersonal relationships, contributing to society, and being gentle as well as assertive.

    Such as statement might tempt you to say 'well obviously you're not a real psychopath then'. As if the definition of a psychopath is someone who exploits others for their personal power, satisfaction or gain.

    A slightly more benign (but still highly inaccurate) definition is that a psychopath is someone who feels little guilt or empathy for others.

    In the end, psychopaths need to be given that very thing everyone believes they lack for others, empathy; a willingness to understand the person, their drives, hopes, strengths and fears, along with knowledge of their own personal sadnesses and sense of inferiority...As it is, such cartoon, unchangeable, inhuman characterizations offers nothing but perpetuation of those stereotypes.

    Serial Killers & Ruthless CEOs exist - Voldemort does not.

    Thank you,

    C

    JRiddy
    —————King of Socionics—————

    Ne-ENTp 7w8 sx/so

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    I'm clapping my hands and making retard noises after reading it which I didn't.

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    Interesting. The guy comes off as kind of creepy from the way he writes but he's probably harmless if he's received therapy for his condition.

    Plus apparently from the wikipedia socio and psychopaths for the most part are harmless unless they've been provoked or harmed in some way. So they're probably not the kind of people you want to mess with.

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    Idk, the way he describes himself sounds pretty normal. Plenty of people try to prey on others' weaknesses.
    Obsequium amicos, veritas odium parit

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    Sure, plenty of people try to prey on other's weakness' but that's classified as deviant behavior in clinical psychology.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ashton View Post
    omg psychopath ↑
    Deviant ↑

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ashton View Post
    Scum ↑
    Project himself on to others. ↑

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ashton View Post
    Dipshit motherfucker ↑
    No fun. ↑

    Because you're too stupid.

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    Absolutely hilarious thread omfg haha. ↑

    Re: OP - interesting. An interesting source (in the comments especially): http://www.sociopathworld.com
    Reason is a whore.

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    Game over, man.

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    Interesting.... I guess I am just biased by what I've been told by most of my professors in that sociopaths aren't really treatable. I'd still be suspicious of him because sociopaths are so good a mimicking emotions. Some people are concerned that putting them in therapy only equips them to better manipulate others.
    “No psychologist should pretend to understand what he does not understand... Only fools and charlatans know everything and understand nothing.” -Anton Chekhov

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bardia View Post
    Interesting.... I guess I am just biased by what I've been told by most of my professors in that sociopaths aren't really treatable. I'd still be suspicious of him because sociopaths are so good a mimicking emotions. Some people are concerned that putting them in therapy only equips them to better manipulate others.
    I'm sure there aren't many Hannibal Lectors in the world and besides, I'd suspect that if someone's been receiving treatment for a psychological disorder like psychopathy, then they're making an honest effort to improve themselves. If they've relapsed or have been become more adept at manipulation, then I'd be inclined to blame their environment.

    As an example, the same could be said for military school and juvenile delinquents. The vast majority of "problem children" improve from a disciplinary school, but the very small minority who don't improve or worsen may indicate a deeper rooted problem than a simple lack of discipline.

    In either case, how you think people like that should be dealt with is usually rooted in how socially liberal or conservative you are and is very subjective.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FDG View Post
    Idk, the way he describes himself sounds pretty normal. Plenty of people try to prey on others' weaknesses.
    Haha. Well I guess the question is, where exactly do you draw the line?
    “Whether we fall by ambition, blood, or lust, like diamonds we are cut with our own dust.”

    Quote Originally Posted by Gilly
    You've done yourself a huge favor developmentally by mustering the balls to do something really fucking scary... in about the most vulnerable situation possible.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Absurd View Post
    I'm clapping my hands and making retard noises after reading it which I didn't.
    I think it mentions you in there.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ashton View Post
    You lose.
    lol, you're pretty funny dude.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ashton View Post
    How come I get warned for saying 'dipshit motherfucker' but MrNinny gets to call people stupid?

    This is bullshit.
    It's probably one of those "crossing a line in sand" type things. I don't know dude.

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    general psychopaths > subset of loonies classified as "psychiatrists"

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    Quote Originally Posted by MisterNi View Post
    I'm sure there aren't many Hannibal Lectors in the world and besides, I'd suspect that if someone's been receiving treatment for a psychological disorder like psychopathy, then they're making an honest effort to improve themselves. If they've relapsed or have been become more adept at manipulation, then I'd be inclined to blame their environment.

    As an example, the same could be said for military school and juvenile delinquents. The vast majority of "problem children" improve from a disciplinary school, but the very small minority who don't improve or worsen may indicate a deeper rooted problem than a simple lack of discipline.

    In either case, how you think people like that should be dealt with is usually rooted in how socially liberal or conservative you are and is very subjective.
    You just mentioned the phrase 'military school' and it reminded me. I know you weren't really talking about the military. But anyway: A psychopath is someone who kills people because he himself wants to do it. But the members of the military kill people because someone else told them to do it.

    They don't even understand the language the other person is speaking. They don't know for sure whether that person is actually dangerous. They don't know if their leaders gave them the right information when they told them to kill this person. They don't know the historical reasons why they are fighting in this area. They don't know that the .... warning... impending rant.... They don't know that the US government itself is the *cause* of many of the wars in the world. They believe that 'crazy people with crazy religions' exist in other countries and want to attack us, when, in reality, we attacked them *first* and gave them a *reason* to hate us.

    So, members of the military go out to foreign countries, to kill innocent people who have no desire to hurt Americans, but who, instead, want to be left alone, want the US to get out of their country and off their land and to stop bombing them.

    They're not defined as psychopaths. Sometimes they're defined as 'heroes.' But they are killing innocent people for misguided reasons based on mistaken beliefs, lies, and information that comes from a government that has its own reasons and motives for why they want us to take over those peoples' lands.

    The military leaders and politicians who command them are responsible for thousands of deaths even if they don't pull the triggers themselves. The entire social institution of government is responsible. I don't normally point to particular individuals as being responsible, because the social institution will still continue to exist and will continue giving large numbers of people an opportunity to go commit murder. They have the money, they have the supplies, they have the social power to make it happen.

    So, individual psychopaths are scary and creepy, but, to put it into perspective, there are other groups of humans who do an enormous amount of killing in comparison to those psychopaths.

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    I like these sorts of things. It should be said that the terms psychopathy and sociopathy aren't really scientific.

    You could theoretically have a high functioning autistic person become a psychopath if they can master their social fears. I imagine it's easy to lose the empathy when people expect you to partake in social rituals that cause you continual internal annoyance, strife, and a clouding sense of being treated unfairly.

    You could also lose your empathy through coercive torture, extreme stress, and the sometimes resulting subversion of the natural emotional responses of your human nature.

    I'm sure there are many more ways that mainstream society doesn't care to think about because it's easy to label things that are fearful and shun those things than to try and understand them.

    i don't know,
    whatever,

    And Hannibal is awesome.

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