Sociopaths I have known

What is it about me and sociopaths? I’ve had an absolute run of them!

Or did I, if fact, enjoy the usual quota? Is there already a pop-psych mag article – ‘How Many Sociopaths Will *You* Encounter This Year? (And How To Deal With Them!)’ It seems a strange thing to get out of bed at 4am and write about, except that I was woken from a dream wherein, for the first time in decades, I dreamed about one of these guys.

[Some of those ‘guys’ were in fact women – but that is a different tale. (Called ‘ALL MY (WORST) RELATIONSHIPS’, in case you are interested.)]

So this guy I once knew: I thought he was wonderful. He walked the walk and he talked the talk. He was into all the new-age stuff, Community, trees, organic, reuse/recycle … he was well ahead of the rest of the world. He stepped up. He was a natural leader.

We were close buddies. We flatted together, hung out together, went motorbiking together, damn-near had girlfriends together (they were sisters), and most importantly made the effort to stay in touch despite me ending up in an entirely different city pursuing some very un-hippie things like fringe theatre, That Guru, and … stuff.

Meanwhile he got on with creating his idyllic in the countryside, conducting his own relationships, stepping into the role of being a father (but never his own kids, always someone else’s) and destroying entire communities as fast as he could.

I don’t know the details. It was his local community focused around their meeting house and trad practices. He got right in there! He integrated, he walked *their* walk and talked their talk. It was there in their church I attended his wedding. He was marrying a long-time friend of mine. She was amazing; a powerful, inspired driven woman believing in all the same stuff. Communities? She STARTED communities!

And it all exploded. That entire community erupted into in-fighting, factions, anger, crisis, division … But fortunately some of them had figured out what the real problem was, Him. There were angry threats. Stand-offs. Close to violence. My friend was send packing – uttering convinced that he was the innocent party. He told me the grim tale later. Fook!

So he joined her community and … in a matter of 2~3 years it exploded too. This was a longstanding community founded on excellent principals, but one new dude, bursting with energy and good ideas, waking-the-walk / talking-the-talk (& he really did believe it all)… Anyway he packed up and pulled out. There were death-threats. Fook!! (I got his version of it, of course.) I was gob-smacked.

But I had by then acquired yet another wife who was insightful enough to eventually spot him in action. (By then he was into his 3rd or 4th major life-rebuild .. yes: in another isolated community.) And we saw it: the control-y stuff. He’d swept yet another defacto wife away from everything she knew, they were out in the bush, and oh how he abused her son. Poor little dot; pre-verbal, but my friend the childcare-expert was dog-training him. Horrible to watch, and listen too. Fook!!!

We drove away, we discussed it, and finally it all locked into place. Everything I knew about him shifted and settled into a new meaning. POW!  So next time he lobbed into my life with a sad tale of how he’d just become the innocent victim of Horrid Woman Who’d Been Corrupted by The Feminists at The Shelter, and the Court Order she’d taken out, etc etc … (but he was going to get his revenge!) … And I blocked him; changed my email.

That. Was. Huge. For me. – Huge!

Sociopaths. They are better understood now, and more visible. And they’re easy to spot. Usually they are the head of a corporation, a lawyer, a billionaire, or at the very least the head of some government department or someone’s boss. In the more prominent cases they are Congressmen, political leaders, State Governors (Premiers in Australia), Prime Ministers, Presidents, despots & movie producers. The Saddam Husseins of this world

And the pattern is always the same. THEY WILL NEVER ACHIEVE SELF-INSIGHT – even if they are called out in public. To them – everything is couched in terms of victimhood. They’re always the one who’s doing it right, and they’re always the one getting screwed when it finally turns to shit. And their stories are highly distorted, manipulative, designed to win a whole new cohort of groupies; a new nest to crawl into like so much bird lice.

I’m grateful that I’ve finally developed the good sense to spot them early and stand clear. The most recent one ended with him threatening to sue me, plus some actual violence, for my supposed ‘crimes’ against his good reputation. This was a good year before the rest of my community finally woke up to him. [‘waking the walk, talking the talk’…]

But why have I had such a string of them in my life? (I haven’t mentioned the rest.) Is it a message? Damn straight it is! But … what? – That I’m a sociopath too? (Fook!)

I’ve treated it that way. Hell – I’m prone to a bit of the ol’ victim-consciousness myself. Can I get manipulative? Oh yes. Do I follow roundabout ways to get my needs met? Yup. Have I become horribly overbearing on other people’s children. Nope, but I get that way with my own boys sometimes. Do I try to ingratiate myself into businesses or communities for the purposes of increasing my personal sense of power? Nope. (I run from communities the moment I start becoming included and treated as a whole human being!!)

And do I every stop and ask myself: “Shit, I wonder if I’m a sociopath?” Yes, I do.

The question I really need to ask is – why have I spent most of my life being easy meat? Why do these people appeal? Why do I so willingly leap upon their bandwagons?

Too many people want a ‘strong leader’. Too many people want to hand over the terrible awful burden of Being An Adult. Too many people want Safety and Comfort. We’re adrift – unable to find centre; personal resource; courage or even purpose. (That sums up most of my life.) So they go out and vote for these crazies. Promote them! Marry them!!

But I know one community that IS immune to sociopaths. It is a Men’s Group, a Big One, and they run trainings for men – guiding the process of leaving victimhood behind (every side of it) and finally becoming whole; becoming strong without strong-arming others, and becoming centred without needing the next Mother/Vagina figure to come along.

As they say; “Shift happens”. It is possible to climb out of victim-hood.

One thought on “Sociopaths I have known

  1. Thanks Ged,

    Good self reflections. I think ‘sociopath’ has come to mean different things to different people. I think it now largely means ‘dickhead’ or bastard or something similar. Or, in other words, people that I don’t like.

    I don’t like a lot of people but they certainly are not all sociopaths.True sociopaths are rather pathetic folks because they haven’t a clue about whats going on around them. They are unable to experience intimacy or discover if other people actually exist or if we are simply all some weird robotic creatures. The odd high functioning sociopath can be a worry, but they make good sales people.

    Mostly I think of sociopaths being people that don’t get me, and then when someone else is writing about the, that they don’t get them. By this I am relating to the plethora of books that came out a while back on the sociopaths in organisations. I do want to be ‘got’ by others, but I am very weird to some people and they find me very difficult. Intimacy is such a rare thing, and to expect it from some people is just self-defeating or perhaps masochistic.

    However, I have thought of sociopathy, at times, as like a super power because I find myself so strongly affected by stuff (people, the world, others, ideas, relationships, …). Every time I take a gamble on trying something new, mostly to do with group psychotherapy or psychodrama stuff or creativity stuff, I worry and fret and steam and shiver and wonder why I bother, why I ‘suffer for my art’ and … don’t the movies look good at the moment and l… et me get some potato crisps into me and overdose on sugar …

    And my final meandering in response to your pretty neat and non-blaming post – I do kind-of-believe, or lets say treat as a working hypothesis, that most/all of us can be sociopathic at times. Cold, calculating, distant, dispassionate, ruthless. Some more than others. Its not actually that way, but it may appear that way to others, however I am able to feel at those time, and I can relate to others also, and it usually costs me a lot in either regret or emotional toll.

    Cheers for the moment and thanks again,


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