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Sociopaths are intelligent, unscrupulous, aggressive. They take on a mask of normality, sometimes even a personal charm, just to achieve their own goals. It does not matter to them that they ruin others' lives. Specialists point out that every fifth person may be a sociopath, that is, display this type of set of features. How can you tell if someone is a sociopath?

Sociopathis a person who exhibits features of sociopathy.Sociopathyis classified as a personality disorder according to the International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related He alth Problems ICD-10. A personality with such characteristics is called dissocial (previously defined as psychopathic) and is characterized by an inability to adapt to life in society. So it is not a disease that you can contract or be born with.

Who do we call a sociopath? A sociopath is a person who disregards the norms and customs of a given culture or environment, does not take into account the feelings of others, manipulates people and does not feel guilty.

Both terms: sociopathy (sociopath) and psychopathy (psychopath) have permanently entered our daily vocabulary and can be used interchangeably.

How to recognize a sociopath?

A sociopath does not know what empathy, compassion, warm relationships are. This is not because of ill will, but because of an inability to form bonded relationships.

Doesn't understand what it means to hurt another person. There is harm only when he feels it. Egocentric, he sees himself as impeccable. He blames others for their failures.

Most of the people with this personality have a nice exterior, a very good job, family.

Educated, we althy, charming, articulate, they cleverly use these qualities to manipulate people for their own needs.

And because they are good observers, they easily pick up human weaknesses to take advantage of at the right moment. A sociopath with a high IQ is the most sophisticated and dangerous.

How does a sociopath work?

It is said that only tough people achieve success. This saying takes on a new meaning in a sociopath. Sociopaths occupy managerial positions because "over the dead" they pursue a specific goal (money, position, power). People are only a means or for themobstacle on the way to the goal, so they either use them or destroy them. Disturbed personality traits are often observed in people at the top of corporate power, but also in small companies.

A sociopath does not identify with people, does not defend them, unless he needs it for something. People with a disturbed personality derive as much pleasure from the sense of power as someone else, e.g. from drinking alcohol.

Power most often manifests itself through psychological violence, much less physical violence. How do they manage it all? The seduction mechanism is at work. When necessary, they are nice, they say exactly what we want to hear, which is why we succumb to their charm so often.

Worth knowing

Men with personality disorders have increased testosterone levels, and women - decreased levels of progesterone. Men and women also have less serotonin in the brain. But there is no scientific evidence that hormones are triggers for such disorders. There are also studies that have shown that men with psychopathic personality traits have an extra Y chromosome. However, scientists have now withdrawn this too.

How to live with a sociopath?

Experts say only a bigger psychopath will beat the psychopath. We must not race with a sociopath, enter into verbal skirmishes, but also show that we are afraid of him. Let us not be provoked - in this way we only stimulate his animal instinct. It's best to be adamant, do your own thing and not show fear. You won't win with such a person, but you can distract them for a moment and disappear from sight.

Working with a sociopath is very difficult. Even if your relationships improve, you need to be prepared for a sudden outburst of anger, manipulation, retaliation, and force. There is no point in counting on a radical change - it will not happen.

Where does sociopathy come from?

Our personality is shaped by our genetic makeup, our environment and our home. We inherit a certain pattern of behavior and depending on environmental influences, we can break this pattern or the environment and family are so toxic that we duplicate the pattern. Man draws from incorrect patterns and learns inappropriate behavior. Early traumas leave a permanent mark on the psyche.

Violence can have different shades - military drill, scaring with belt, not necessarily beating. A form of violence is not understanding the child, especially with ADHD. Constantly criticizing, admonishing, harassing (you're a gawk, clumsy). The child boasts of drawing, and the mother, instead of appreciating the efforts, points out mistakes. Even worse is passive aggression. This is a nice drawing, and how did Gosia draw? Beautifully! Such situations are very devastating. You are not allowed to give your baby doublesmessages: nice, but … Let's stay with "nice". The toxic mother laughs that the baby is fat and that she is not coping. It is a traumatic experience for a toddler and you need to hug him and comfort him. When a child has no understanding or help out of nowhere, he grows up in an atmosphere of aversion, hostility, rejection and becomes resistant, rough.

One hypothesis is that cultural stereotypes that promote masculinity, understood as insensitivity, may induce an oversensitive boy to adopt a tough guy attitude, e.g. if he finds himself in a social group where helplessness and fear are not tolerated.

Each of us carries the genetic message of the family - legends, stories that shape us. Often, although we run away from something, we repeat the mistakes of our fathers and mothers.

Can sociopathy be cured?

When the level of the disorder is very high, the psychopath behaves unceremoniously with the psychiatrist, does not feel embarrassed, tries to wrestle with the doctor. Usually it comes to get a mental illness certificate for some purpose, e.g. avoiding criminal liability for your actions.

However, in the case of a crime, the consequences are always borne regardless of the so-called sanity (see box below). If the level of the disorder is lower, patients are able to present themselves impeccably. Sometimes they simulate a mental illness, as long as the doctor does not realize that the problem lies with the personality.

Anyone can find some sociopathic features, but what matters is the proportions. Conversation plays an important role in diagnosing the disorder. The doctor analyzes the patient's entire life path. He asks about the functioning of the family, relations at school, at work and at home.

Personality tests are helpful, on the basis of which you can see which personality traits predominate. At least two tests are needed for a psychiatrist to make a diagnosis: personality disorder.

Because sociopaths lie and manipulate, often tests show no disorder. Only the extraordinary insight and experience of a psychiatrist can reveal this. But despite an accurate diagnosis, no individual or group therapy brings any results because the sociopath does not want to change at all.

Worth knowing

The popular opinion says that mental illness exempts you from criminal liability.

In fact, people with a mental illness who commit a crime often face higher and longer pen alties than he althy people. They are sent to a psychiatric hospital with strict rigors, i.e. they are deprived of liberty and at the same time are subject to treatment.

Sociopathy in the legal sense is not a disease,the patient has no delusions, does not feel lost in reality, does not confuse the worlds. He keeps his feet on the ground, acts consciously and is responsible for his actions, and in the event of committing a crime, he goes to an ordinary prison.

"Zdrowie" monthly

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