Wednesday, December 28, 2011

“The Sociopath Next Door” by Martha Stout, PhD

I believe this book should be required reading for high school students (along with The Art of Natural Family Planning so everyone knows how a female’s cycle works and we see a drastic reduction in “accidental” pregnancies … love adoption, hate abortion).

Martha Stout has written a rockin’ book that keeps the reader interested. She claims that only about 4% of the population is sociopathic (interchangeable with being psychopathic) and have a total absence of conscience.

Ruminate on that for a minute. NO CONSCIENCE. Like you could do anything and not feel bad. Like you try to fit in so you can charm people, you mimic their facial expressions and you are basically an actor your entire life so you can hang out in society. People are a game to you.

I have come across a few of these people in my life, and I have to say it is SCARY. You can’t reason with them because they simply don’t care. They like to mess with you like a chess piece because they get bored easily. They tell lies about you to anyone who will listen. You are a thing to them, and if they focus on you, your life is to be destroyed.

This book has a nice tip to help you start thinking about who the sociopaths in your life could possibly be (let’s not forget those BORDERLINE personalities, too, who make up another ??? of the population, holy crap!). Then it has an entire chapter with 13 tips on how to protect yourself from them. For instance, I like to fight back by nature because I’m scrappy (according to Tresa), but the tactic to take with sociopaths is AVOIDANCE.

Of course, don’t minimize the importance of your INSTINCTS. If something doesn’t feel right, why do we just keep going back to it? I personally do it because I’m curious by nature and want to know what the heck is wrong with this person who I just saw “crying” and realize I’ve never seen anyone cry that way in my life … like a bad acting cry, like mimicking a cry. (spoiler from the book: people who always seem to play on your pity and take, take take should send up a red flag!).

At the ripe young age of 40, I’m glad I came across this book because I am a Pleaser and try to Be Nice and Get Along. This book has taught me to put on my Big Girl Panties and stay away from the Crazies so I can protect my most valuable asset: my family.

I’ll leave you with a quote: “Perhaps the most easily recognized example is the battered wife whose sociopathic husband beats her routinely and then sits at the kitchen table, head in his hands, moaning that he cannot control himself and that he is a poor wretch whom she must find it in her heart to forgive.” And she does forgive him, time and time again, until she finally figures it out and gets the hell away from him forever and goes on to live a full and rich life like she never imagined possible while she was being beaten!

I wonder if maybe sociopaths were born without a soul. My husband thinks that’s preposterous. What do you think? Report back here with your socio/psychopath stories! Mine is above. You’re welcome!

1 comment:

  1. Yep, had a wacko stalking my son and he would blog about him all the time etc. The more I tried to fix the problem the worse it got. Had to back off, let the problem GET EVEN WORSE, and he eventually fixated on other people. Not kidding.

    The cops do nothing about people like this. BTW he is still likely reading so don't say anything on my blog. But just so you know...


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