“He will choose you, disarm you with his words, and control you with this presence. He will delight you with his wit and his plans. He will show you a good time, but you will always get the bill. He will smile and deceive you, and he will scare you with his eyes. And when he is through with you, and he will be through with you, he will desert you and take with him your innocence and your pride. You will be left much sadder but not a lot wiser, and for a long time you will wonder what happened and what you did wrong. And if another of his kind comes knocking at your door, will you open it?” —From an essay signed, “A psychopath in prison.” excerpted from Without Conscience, Robert D. Hare, PhD.
What is the difference between a psychopath and a sociopath and all other clinically diagnosed abhorrent personalities? A psychopath is born the way he is and cannot be changed. A simple premise. Born that way, stays that way, dies that way. Nothing will ever change him. No matter the environmental trappings of a good family, the education, the loving parents, the therapies he will try, the shock treatments. The recidivism rate is nil. He will still have psychopathic thoughts. What he decides to do with those thoughts is another story.
He can be a murderous psychopath or a corporate psychopath. Either way, he will play with fire (your mind-the minds of the masses) and not look back. He doesn’t have the empathy to care. His emotions do not allow him to have real feelings. He can only have pretend feelings that he has learned to parrot back at his victim(s) for their temporary belief that he is normal. His emotions are never real.
His eyes, borne of black glass, cannot change their true color. Imagine a vehicle with windows that are tinted dark black that does not allow others to see into the vehicle. Knock on the window of the car, and the owner hits the switch at will to lower the window to talk to you. At their will only. That’s when you have the opportunity to see the person. Only if they hit that switch do they allow you to see them. Hit the power button and the window closes. Your vision of them is gone again. These are the eyes of the psychopath. The dark, cold, black eyes of a true psychopath.
His image in the looking-glass may be that of a chameleon. He is a man who wears many hats and dons many coats. His purpose in his life is to manipulate his victims and prey that he has chosen. His obsessions.
His lies are his own truths. His truths are his own beliefs. His beliefs, if countered for accuracy and honesty, are often switched for other stories and lies that he can easily manipulate into his life for his audience. He believes his own words as they spew forth from the twisted lobes of his brain.
He is a sycophant. He aims to please his audience, but not for their pleasure…only for his. And ultimately, that pleasure will bring his audience devastating mental, physical and emotional damage. How do I know this? Because I am the victim and the survivor of one. I’m still waiting for the ending.
A psychopath is good at what he does. He fools many. Over and over and over again. The people that he deceives fall into many categories and include not only his victims, i.e. his significant other. He manipulates and lies to law enforcement, to the judicial system, to attorneys and to whomever he pleases. The world is his playing ground for his web of lies that he truly believes. He is convincing when he pitches his case to a new contestant in his game. If that person is truly unaware of the scope and magnitude of a diagnosed psychopath’s behavior and mental prowess, they will succumb to his lies.
If you have been conned by one, don’t consider yourself weak. Not the first time. They have had years of practice honing their art. You are new in his game. There is no comparison at who would win the first time.
But there is something to be learned from his game. Don’t walk away from a psychopath without anything gained. As a famous quote reads, “Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me”. Once you have learned the subtle nuances, the quirks and the patterns of the psychopath, remember them. Then remember to apply those thought patterns to people you meet in your future. If certain new people fit the full categories, if there is factual proof or they give you red flags, walk away. Never stay a victim.
Is this hyper-vigilance? Perhaps. Maybe. Yes, it is. Ensconced in the folds of a true psychopath’s brain, twisted and manipulated in ways that you thought were true emotions only later to find are simple lies designed to create a situation for their desires, you never forget the black void of darkness that you struggle so valiantly to climb from every day to escape the horrific memories they have tortuously created for you.
Dr. Robert Hare feels that 1% of the population is comprised of psychopaths. “He calls them “subclinical” psychopaths. They’re the charming predators who, unable to form real emotional bonds, find and use vulnerable women for sex and money (and inevitably abandon them)… A significant proportion of persistent wife beaters, and people who have unprotected sex despite carrying the AIDS virus, are psychopaths. Psychopaths can be found in legislatures, hospitals, and used-car lots. They’re your neighbour, your boss, and your blind date. Because they have no conscience, they’re natural predators…” more information can be found at : http://www.hare.org/links/saturday.html.
I saw Daniel recently. I stood next to him court. I looked into his black eyes again. This time I saw a myriad of emotions shooting as if they were darts at me. To coin another expression-“If looks could kill”- would be an appropriate one. I saw hatred.
When I originally entered the courtroom and signed in, I turned towards the seating and walked to a row of empty seats, not realizing where he was sitting. There he sat, in the third row, right towards the area where I was walking. His eyes followed me as I walked towards the back of courtroom. He sat slumped in his chair, head on his hand, glaring sideways at me. Pure hate emanating from his cold eyes.
My luck, the only seats left were right behind him. I sat in the last row, behind him and the woman he brought with him. She turned to look at me, and then to stroke his now shaved head and adjust the collar of his leather Harley jacket. He didn’t move a muscle while she mothered him. He kept his eyes forward and would not address her.
I felt his darkness again. Unfathomable darkness. I saw evil workings behind the darkness. I saw anger sparking. I know Daniel. I know him very well. The longer he sat in the courtroom, the more agitated he became. He couldn’t sit still and left the room several times while waiting for the case number to be called. The woman he brought attempted to calm him, but he consistently shrugged her off, keeping his mind focused it seemed on the matter at hand.
I waited patiently with my daughter, who had driven me so I could review my documents while we talked in the car. My daughter, with a degree in criminal psychology, had accompanied me to be my witness. While I could not look at him and observe him the entire time, my daughter was able to pay close attention to his behaviors along with the behaviors of the woman he had brought. My observations on this post and the next are conclusions from both my daughter and I.
Next, the explosive actions of Daniel in the courtroom.
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