Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Narcissism or Psychopathy - Differences.


A Reader asks:

I would be interested in reading anything you wrote on psychopaths need for attention/acceptance. Have you? Like, how would they react to rejection?

Basically the need for attention and acceptance, if it's a prominent and dominating aspect of what drives a person, is a distinctive trait in Narcissism. As such it is not exclusively something psychopaths are known for.

It is often said that psychopaths have strong narcissistic tendencies, and the statement isn't completely wrong. But I also often see statements saying Malignant Narcissism and Psychopathy are the same, and this is not the case. There are some very important fundamental differences between psychopaths and malignant narcissists.

Narcissists may be callous and abusive - malignant narcissists definitely are callous and abusive! - and they lack empathy. These are things they have in common with psychopaths. But narcissists have a very strong emotional need for attention or Attention Seeking, Acceptance and Admiration. Their self esteem depends on whether or not they receive these things, and this makes them very vulnerable to rejection and other forms of negative attention such as humiliation, being out shined by someone else, or of being deliberately or naturally ignored.

Psychopaths do not need attention and we certainly do not need acceptance, at least not just for the sake getting it. Their emotional well being does not depend on whether or not they get these things, but they do play a part for most psychopaths' sense of satisfaction. In this we're probably not that different from normal people: We like to get attention, to be admired and respected just like everybody else, but we do not feel bad if we don't get these things.

For psychopaths getting attention and respect from others is most of all a technique to get what they want without having to resort to coercion - threats, blackmail, and physical violence, i.e. - with the same frequency as we otherwise would. Having attention and respect - and acceptance - from others is really only paramount for as far as it is necessary to avoid the risks associated with the more negative techniques. In short: Attention and acceptance to psychopaths are not goals or ends, they're means to ends.

When we (psychopaths) do care about whether or not we get attention it is not because we have an emotional dependency on being recognized or confirmed by our surroundings. It doesn't matter to us that people speak badly about us, or that they try to avoid us. Being feared makes an opening for controlling those who fear you, and control leads to possible power.

Making sure you get a lot of attention is also a kind of control, it is a potential opener for gaining power, and it is the central, and often the only, reason why we seek to get it.

This is a well known fact, and the entertainment industry - just to mention one - knows and uses it: Make yourself known, make sure people notice you and that they can't overlook you, and you have the basis for influencing how people respond to you.

If people like you, there's a greater chance that they'll support you or help you in other ways, especially if it's mutual. <-- This is what I've chosen to do, but I certainly did not always use a friendly approach. I've been very abusive in the past, and it has worked very well for me too. - But I've changed in many ways, and I find the mutual idea much more interesting now - and that is good, because it keeps me out of prison, and it has created a good possibility for me to actually do something valuable that others can benefit from... But that was a side note.

  • Narcissists seek attention and acceptance for it's own sake, and are miserable if they don't get it.
  • Psychopaths seek attention and acceptance because it is part of a technique to get something else. Attention and/or acceptance for it's own sake doesn't matter to how a psychopath feels.

A Narcissist, opposite a psychopath, is very vulnerable to Social Rejection and rejection in general. If you deny them admiration and respect, and - more important still - if you humiliate them publicly, you can crush a narcissist completely (provided you do it right and with timing).

  • Narcissists get very hurt when they get rejected.
  • Psychopaths do not feel any emotional pain or discomfort when they get rejected.

No narcissistic person can go through public humiliation and not feel emotionally very disturbed by it. With this knowledge one can destroy a narcissist quite easily... This is the typical area of most psychopaths' expertise, and it is why we so easily can control most narcissistic people. For the same reason most psychopaths have a lot of contempt for narcissistic people. We see individuals who love to abuse and humiliate, but who are even more vulnerable to these things themselves, and it's hard to find it in your heart to respect such people... 
- I suspect we may have this in common with most neurotypicals.
*

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Do psychopaths feel Relief?

A reader wrote:

Please tell me your experience of these emotions:
Intimidation
Relief
Do you feel them at all? What are your notions of them?

I wanted to reply, but I didn't know what to say. So I decided to think about it, and today, more than a week later, I think I have the answer... I'll start with Relief, and write about intimidation next time.

So how am I with this emotion, do I feel relief, have I ever felt relief, and if I have, how did it feel?

Strange as it may sound, I can think of many times where relief would be the natural emotional response. But the fact is, I can't explain this feeling.
There've been many times where I've said: "I'm so relieved!" and "What a relief!", I would make that deep exhale, holding my hand at my stomach, as we all no doubt have seen people do in this kind of incident.

But I can't put my finger on how the actual emotion feels, or if I ever felt it. I've 'performed' relief so many times, not thinking about it or whether felt it or not, so when I was asked outright if I feel it, I was unable to answer. I think the truth is that I never have felt real relief, at least not in the traditional sense.

It puzzled me that I couldn't explain anything about relief at all, and it reminded me of the times in prison when I would be asked about all kinds of feelings and I had to think of something I'd read or heard in order to find something to say about it. With relief I can easily mimic the way I know it's supposed to be expressed, and I've done it on many occasions.

It seems that my feelings have a strong cognitive bend. When I was in the in situations where I f.x. barely escaped capture after having done something criminal, the relief I expressed was more of a cognitive recognition of the situation than it was some distinct emotion.

When I looked up the definition of relief I found it to be somewhat different from what I thought the word meant. It also made it much more understandable for me that I don't experience this emotion, because it seems that what you gain relief from has to be associated with some form of stress and pain, danger and fear. I didn't realize this, and so I was at loss for words.

I've always associated relief with a situation, not with an emotion. If I had been more aware when I learned how to show relief, I would've noticed something wasn't quite right, for why would I have to exhale deeply and smile while giving a 'saying' look at the others present? I've seen this behavior as a form of communication, after all a lot of our communication happens with gestures and how we look at each other.

Since I don't experience these things the way that most people experience them, I would also not really have any trigger of relief. Danger, and even fear to some extent, for me are exciting. They add color to my life - which I don't see as a sign of emotional poverty, but a sign that I have emotional room for a lot.

I have learned something new again, and I can thank my Readers for helping me do so with great questions. More to the point, I hope Readers will learn from my attempts at describing and explaining these things.

___

Friday, June 24, 2011

What Do Psychopaths Feel?

As a child I quickly learned that most of the time, in most situations - be they common interaction or situations where I had been caught for doing something wrong and was questioned about my motives - it was never a good idea to show how I really felt. One had to put a lot of effort into displaying the right kind of emotions, the ones I saw expressed by others again and again.

Come to think of it, "to show how I really felt" in most cases is not exactly the right way to say it, for most of the time I don't know what my real emotions were. I do recall times where I know exactly what my emotions were, of course. Those are situations where I felt angry (oh, so angry!), wronged, misunderstood, frustrated, annoyed and irritated, and sheer rage. There were also times where I felt pride, I felt superior, and there was a lot of contempt too. There were times where I had a lot of fun, there was excitement, and curiosity, lots of curiosity. A few times I would admire something that somebody could do, I don't quite recall who or what, but I know it happened. Maybe I'll recall later.

So I've had plenty of emotions, but there're a number of emotions that either were never there, or that were there only in a more fleeting and not very dramatic manner. These were usually the emotions that my surroundings expected me to show much, much more of. And I did learn to do exactly that, express exaggerated emotionality.

I use the word 'exaggerated' because that is how it's always seemed to me. And throughout my childhood and youth - and I guess, into my adulthood too - I was convinced that all the dramatic displays of emotions I see around me were exaggerations, that they were people showing off as if saying: "Look how emotional I am! I am good and right!".

To be honest, I still think this is what people do, and this is why they do it, to be sure their surroundings think well of them. I used to feel a lot of contempt toward people who seemed to be very emotional, because I knew I could do it much better than they did. Even as a young teen I was better at displaying emotionality in a convincing manner than most adults I saw, and I scoffed at their lack of insight and skill, that they couldn't do better than me, a mere child.

However, I did eventually learn that some people really are that emotional, and I also found that those were the people I could best... how to say it, best... uhm, impress, intimidate, dominate and control, and... yes, sometimes even abuse.

A paradox, to find you do best among the very people you have contempt for, is it not?

But I don't always have contempt for them. It seems that when I get to know these people intimately, my contempt will grow, but another feeling will come in as well: I begin to find them cute! - Yes, that means I actually like them!... And there have been times where I actually thought it was really sad that it had to be them that I would exploit, because in many ways I thought they were real nice people, and I would've liked them to be just as happy as me!...

Ergo: Exit the idea that Zhawq can't feel empathy!...

I wonder if my Readers agree?

I still frequently experience the emotions I've listed here. And while they're also rather representative for the emotions that I've recognized in other psychopathy diagnosed people, as well as found described - expressively or indirectly - in books about psychopathy, it does seems to me that it's quite a nice long list of emotions for someone who's supposed to be shallow and have flat affect.

Feel free to comment, I value your opinions.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Associations of a psychopath: He's a pirate



A Reader send me the link to this music video. It isn't a world famous piano player who performs, but in my opinion it is wonderfully played. I immediately loved it!

It reminds me of some of my youthful fantasies, one of which was about being the captain of a pirate ship, you know, one of these magnificent old ships that we see in pirate movies of the 16.th or 17.th century.

One of my favorite pirates of all time I'm sure is not the one most people think of when they think about movie pirates. It's the bad guy in Disney's 'Peter Pan': Captain Claw.

As early as I can remember, as a small kid, I was fascinated by Captain Hook. I never really felt any attachment to Peter Pan and his friends, I don't know why. And thinking back it seems I always had some preference for the more 'fierce' characters, those who broke the rules in the name of freedom, but also those who merely proved themselves superior.

In reality it wasn't so much about a cause as it was about the battle for a cause. It seems I was always amorally inclined. I would like to know where my taste for the extreme, and for taking a liking to villains in movies even before I knew the moral Moral, came from. But I haven't been able to find an answer.

Today there're many researchers who hypothesizes people can be born 'evil', but I don't believe in evil as an abstract reality. It exists only within the context of our culture background and ideals, but if one can be born with personality traits that predestines some of us to become disruptive and what some call antisocial, maybe it is time to review the ideals and the reasoning of the morality that we, as a society and a culture, is still adhering to.


Captain Hook will prevail, along with Zhawq, and along with those we call psychopaths and other minorities!...
As long as the great oceans exist, as long will pirates probably exist too. In the future the great oceans may be made of space instead of water, but ocean too is a concept, not a given.

Some say I have a fire in my eyes. If our eyes are the windows to our soul, maybe my soul is an ocean of fire.

Long live Captain Hook!

___

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Psychopaths and Criminal Versatility.

One of the things that repeatedly is being pointed out about psychopaths is our criminal versatility. When I made a search on the phrase criminal versatility, all the results but one had the word Psychopath in them, Wikipedia's Psychopathy being number 4.

I wonder if this is a just reputation. Are psychopaths alone criminally versatile, whereas the neurotypical majority of people and the non-psychopath minorities are not?

Maybe I don't really wonder. In fact, I have a personal experience that tells a different story...

Like all the traits this cannot stand alone, meaning: You can be versatile as a criminal and still not be a psychopath. But it is one of the recurring traits, at least in psychopaths who are (or have been) criminal. And it is true for me also.

But I would turn the question around and ask: If you have taken the step and have broken the law in one respect, then you're a criminal.
If you do the same thing again, but with another type of crime, you do not become a 'double-criminal' or 'twice as criminal', you are still simply criminal.
I take it we all know this.

So my question is: Why do some people commit one type of Crime and not all the others? - No, I don't mean: Why do you steal and not rape someone also! - I mean, why do you steal, but not commit fraud also? Both are crimes based on the same motive: To get money or other material value.

To me it seems so logical and natural, that if you break the law in order to get wealthy, you may as well break the law in every way you can that can get you more wealth.

Then there're the other kinds of crime: Violent crime, Sexual crime. And they seem to be totally different from Material Value crime. But are they really different?

If we think about it, why do someone want more money, f.x.? A few may want money merely so that they can gather more things. But most people do not get pleasure only from having lots of things and money. Most of us have a wide variety of different kinds of pleasure, And the one thing almost all kinds of pleasure have in common is that they can be bought for, or easier accessed if you have, money!

Most thieves, con men, fraudsters, muggers, bank robbers, i.e., commit these crimes in order to get money - so that they can get more things, and more sex, and more power - which is linked with violence - or simply the ability to engage i violence in a less risky manner.

If someone wants to get money so that he can buy more and better sex, he might as well get more sex by criminal means. He's already a criminal because he wants more and better sex, so why won't he get more and better sex from crime?

In my experience most people who are not psychopaths, and who do one kind of crime, also do one or a more other kinds of crime, though only on a minor scale.
He who buys sex from under age girls is more likely to also 'borrow' money from the cash register, speed drive, and bet on dog fights.
He, who steals from the cash register is more likely to also speed drive, engage in copy piracy on the Internet and download pedophile porn.
He, who uses counterfeit money is more likely to also buy a stolen car, use cocaine and blackmail the neighbor's teenage son to have sex with him.

All that said, it does indeed seem that we - the psychopaths - are more criminal versatile than other minorities, and certainly more versatile than the neurotypical majority. We do a larger variety of crimes and we do them in a more radical manner. In many ways we are more radical people. But I think it is too black and white when they say we are versatile as if everybody else stick with only one type of crime, because that is obviously not true!

Another thing worth noticing, is that psychopaths make up approximately 20% of any prison population, which means we get caught a lot! No, it's not because we do all the crime, if we did, we would make up way more than 1% of the general population! We simply have certain issues in our personality structure that leads to us getting caught more often. It's sad, but it's true!

To me this indicates - as always - that it is a question not about what, but about how much.

Psychopaths are not alien, not a different species. We are merely human at one end of a scale where the majority sit in the middle.
... And this, in my opinion, is a very important factor to understand!

___

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

'Young Psychopath Sexually Molested in Train!'



Jon Ronson, in his book 'The Psychopath Test', buys a copy of the DSM-IV-TR and describes it after having looked it through and found that he apparently has no less than 12 mental disorders. But what was most funny for me is what he writes at p. 33:

DSM-IV-TR is an 886-page textbook published by the American Psychiatric Association that sells for $99. It sits on the shelves of psychiatry offices all over the world and lists every known menral disorder. There are currently 374 known mental disorders. ... Surprisingly, this being such a vast book packed with so many disorders, including Frotteurism, including esoteric ones like Frotteurism ('rubbing agaubst a non-consenting person in a public transportation vehicle while usually fantasizing an exclusive, caring relationship with the victim, most acts of Frotteurism occur the the person is aged 12-15, after wgucg there is a gradual decline in frequency')

When I read this I burst out laughing. And here is the reason:
Despite the fact that I was called 'pretty boy' throughout my youth and even into my 20-ies, I have only on very, very few occasions been subject to someone making uninvited advances toward me. It simply did not happen. Ever! - And yet, there was this single, once only, time in my life that I did have a very unusual experience. It happened when I visited my fiance's family in Japan when I was 16.

I was standing in a train during rush hour - Japanese trains during rush hour are extremely crowded in - and there was a man standing right behind me. He placed his hand on my bottocks, but he did it softly at first I wasn't sure if I was imagining it. There wasn't room to turn around, so I couldn't look to see if what I felt actually was happening. But the pressure soon began to tighten and I knew someone was having their hand at my ass. I loudly stated that he must have misunderstood something (in half broken Japanese, it was the closest I could find that resembled saying: "Move your fucking hand or I'll cut it off!"), but he kept at it even though there's no doubt he understood what I was saying.

When we arrived at the next train station, and the compartment temporarily became less crowded, I turned around to let him see my face, knowing he would see I really was serious and that I wouldn't back off from attacking him. To my surprise, the moment I turned toward him he took looked down (so he couldn't see my eyes or my face) and began to bow while he repeatedly said: "Domo arigato gozaimasu!" ("Thank you very much, sir!"). But at least his hand was no longer on my but so I decided to do no more about and left him alone. After all, I didn't know what it might lead to if I actually did attack him.

When the train started again, so did he. And the whole scene was repeated, with me yelling slightly louder and using a few curses I knew in Japanese, and with him actually taking his hand away from my but a couple of times, only to put it back as soon as I stopped threatening and shouting. Everybody else were poker faces. This is something the Japanese are really good at: Keeping up appearances. Sure, I could see that those closest and standing with their front to me were upset, frightened and embarrassed, but from a short distance I don't think most people would've been able to see anything peculiar.

Anyway, the following train station was where I got off, my fiance's mother stood there waiting for me, so I decided to not pick a fight and instead take it as the somewhat funny and peculiar incident that it was. As I got off the train and walked toward my fiance's mother, I looked back at the guy. I could see him standing in the same manner again, bowing and saying "Domo arigato Gozaimasu!". - Fucker, he actually thanked me for having molested me and traumatised me for life!!

All those years that have gone by, and it's not until now that I know the name of the sexual assault I suffered: Frotteurism!... At times like this I thank the gods that I'm a psychopath. Think of the life long trauma and recurring nervous break downs I would otherwise have suffered, not to mention the horrible night mares! I would've spend a fortune on therapy... and would most likely have been molested by a few of them, so things would've gotten worse!... I'd have never had the courage to date the lovely women I've known! No sex!...
Oh, and I would've probably felt I was to blame, I'd have felt guilty! Maybe I'd have felt sorry for this guy, imagine that!...

All in all I guess, in the light of all this, that ten years in prison is a small price to pay for a strong and healthy psyche.

.....

In the video it's a woman who practices Frotteurism. Apparently the word 'Chijo' refers to females and there's no male equivalent, except for the addition of the English 'Man', which makes the slang version 'Chijo Man'... So would that be 'Frotteuring woman-man'?

___

Monday, June 20, 2011

Reading 'The Psychopath Test'.

I've been reading a little further in my new book 'The Psychopathy Test' by Jon Ronson, and so far find it very entertaining. It is a story about a journalist who coincidentally becomes interested in learning about mental disorders and madness, and about how they influence the world we live in, society and possibly politics and economy. He sets out to find out about mental disorders in high places.

The reader is taken on a journey through a number of visits to and meetings with different people and places, and we are being presented to the leading definitions of the Normal, of Mental Disorders, and of Madness, of the our Western Society at our present time (during the late 2005-2010 AD). Ronson keeps a light tone throughout his description of events that seem to have actually taken place, though I think they've probably been altered slightly for the sake of entertainment consistency, which so far he does very successfully.

While to me Ronson seems experienced and confident, he describes himself in a way that I imagine most people will recognize and find familiar. I suspect Ronson exaggerates somewhat, I don't think his insecurities and weaknesses are quite as significant as he describes them. But I can see why doing it this way gives him a "rapport" with (most of) his readers, making it possible for them to relate to him and understand his messages on a direct and instant basis that bypasses the need to intellectually process the text word by word. This is important for a book with a story that builds largely on commonly known daily and lifetime emotional experiences, without which the 'Message', or 'morale' of the book (if there is one) might not make sense.

I see such little alterations of facts as artistic freedom and creativity, and I can almost translate it directly to what I am doing, only I do the process in reverse so that where Ronson is "lying" a little bit in cases where it doesn't destroy the content of the facts - like I have been doing most of my life on a daily basis - I now do the opposite. I am keeping the facts intact even when before I would have naturally altered them so as to make them fit into an idea or a purpose.


At p. 33 he has bought a copy of the DSM-IV and have looked it through. He writes:

DSM-IV-TR is an 886-page textbook published by the American Psychiatric Association that sells for $99. It sits on the shelves of psychiatry offices all over the world and lists every known menral disorder. There are currently 374 known mental disorders. ...there was nothing at all in there about psychopaths. ... I wonder if I've got any of the 374 mental disorders?

It does seem somewhat odd that a manual which covers so many so called mental disorders - among which I can think of several that seem to be little more than excuses to label something and thus acquire a little more power along with the ability to make a few more billion dollar on some new medication that naturally will have to be developed - somehow manages to miss the one disorder that defines the most powerful and evil 1% on the globe! But that's a subject for another article.

Ronson soon finds out that indeed he has not only one, or two, but several mental disorders:

I opened the manual again. And I instantly diagnosed myself with twelve different [mental disorders].

General anxiety was a given. But I hadn't realized what a collage of menral disorders my whole life has been, from inability to grasp sums (Arithmetic Learning Disorder) and the resultant tense homework situation with my mother (Parent-Child Relational Problem) ... (Caffeine Induced Disorder) and avoiding work (Malingering) ... There was Nightmare Disorder ... I was much crazier than I had imagined.

.....

In the next chapter I will follow a Ronson in disbelief on a visit to England's most infamous institution for the Criminally Insane. It is called Broadmore Psychiatric Hospital and is the place where they send...

[...] the pedophiles and the serial killers and the child-murderers, the ones who couldn't help themselves.

Disbelief is something I cannot feel about this type of situation which we're about to experience.

If this book proceeds in the direction I am hoping for, it is not totally unlike something I have been wishing I might be able to write some day. We need some opposition to the ever growing mania with creating new "disorders" out of every little sign of life and human spirit that is left in an already sleepwalking population.

I'm hoping the best. And the next chapter should be good!...

___

Sunday, June 19, 2011

How Do They Look Just Before They Die?

I've just started reading a new book named 'The Psychopath Test' by Jon Ronson, and it seems both entertaining and interesting.
In the first chapter Ronson describes an episode during a visit to the University College London School of Psychology where some neuro-psychology related research takes place. Here he was told about one of the researchers who interviews psychopaths. It went like this:

I heard a story about [the researcher] once ... She was interviewing a psychopath. She showed him a picture of a frightened face and asked him to identify the emotion. He said he didn't know what the emotion was but it was the face people pulled just before he killed them.

Now whether or not someone actually said this in an interview, it is obviously a joke and not meant to be taken seriously. But it reminded me of my own issues with identifying certain emotions - and sometimes all emotions if they're not strongly enough expressed. I thought of the interviews I've been through and the questions I've been asked about how the people I've killed looked during the event and right before I killed them.

The 'funny' thing about this is that people generally don't look very frightened when the moment comes and they know that now they'll die. I've seen people look much more afraid when they get startled, f.x. by a sudden entry of someone they're afraid of. But even then it's not that simple, because fear and surprise can look very much alike, so maybe it's more about me reading my expectations into their expressions based on the knowledge I have about whether or not they're afraid of me/someone already before they get startled.

I made a search on expressions of fear with the intention of finding one or more pictures where people have the expression I've seen on the faces of those I killed.
There weren't many that really resembled the expressions I remember. Most of the photos were exaggerated expressions performed for the purpose of showing as clearly as possible what fear looks like.

But I found a couple of pictures that somewhat conveys how people really look in the situations that I have been witness to, their expressions just before I killed them, but also a few occasions where I wasn't the killer but an observer. The picture above is the one that comes closest, especially to my own three experiences with seeing people in this kind of situation.

As the Reader will probably agree, the woman looks more slightly surprised than afraid. I wouldn't personally identify her expression as fear, but it was on the page among the pictures and photos of people expressing fear.

___

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Truth or Myth: The Psychopathic Stare. (Part 6)

I was just taking a break with a cup of coffee, after a rather long conversation with an acquaintance who mentioned something about Shakespeare's Hamlet - a play which takes place in Denmark (a Scandinavian state in Northern Europe), and this reminded me of the mail I received from a Reader who lives there. He told me in his mail that the Danish Prime Minister has the psychopathic stare.

I didn't check it out when I wrote the Psychopathic Stare articles, but the Hamlet discussion inspired me to take a look. I didn't expect to find anything I would be able to notice as psychopathic or otherwise odd, since I generally can't see the 'cold' or 'unemotional' quality that people so often talk about, and even have said to see in me.

So I was rather surprised at what I found when I downloaded the attachments in my Danish Reader's mail. The Reader further tells me that in his country the Psychopathy Diagnosis is not called psychopathy, but 'Character Deviant'. A label that leaves most of those who get the diagnosis unaware that they've been diagnosed as psychopaths. But then, according to the Reader this is all in a day's work where he comes from. There the population is pretty much kept in the dark about everything.

It reminded me of where I grew up, but I guess this have to be the more extreme. They have the world's highest tax at 50% average, plus 25% VAT on everything from groceries to dentistry and railway tickets. After that comes the extra special charges which differ in between wares and services.
Maybe it all adds up in the end, they also have one of the world's highest annual suicide rates.

Denmark has fostered some of the world's greatest authors. Hans Christian Andersen who wrote 'The Ugly Duckling' - a story about how the great are bullied by the common and mediocre... a theme that apparently is very central in daily life in those parts even today... comes to mind.

.....

Correction: Anders Fogh Rasmussen is no longer Prime Minister of Denmark, but sits in the European Parliament.

.....

Addition: It was brought to my attention that it can seem as if I am saying this man is a psychopath, or that he has a psychopathic stare (which is more or less the same thing).

Let me take this opportunity to once again emphasize that I can not determine whether or not someone is a psychopath, or if they have a truly psychopathic stare, from looking at a picture! Nor will I ever attempt to do so!

___

Friday, June 17, 2011

My Psychopathic Traits: Grandiosity.

One trait that is absolutely central in Narcissism is their inflated view of own importance. Another commonality is their egocentricity and their grandiosity. However, these traits are also very common in psychopaths, and many people think the two conditions are one and the same.

But whereas these are traits that are not only common, but necessary, for an individual to be given the Narcissist diagnosis, they are not necessarily present in all psychopaths (though they are indeed very common), and they're also not present to the same degree in every psychopathic person.

In many psychopaths the grandiose element lingers somewhere between the barely noticeable and the obvious yet not clearly dominant in comparison to other of the psychopathic traits they have.

In Zhawq (<-- that's me, your humble host! *big smile*) egocentricity was apparent from very early on, and it is something I can easily see when I compare myself with my more common mainstream surroundings.

- But descriptions such as 'inflated sense of own importance' and 'obvious grandiosity' is a little harder for me to see... most of the time, that is.
In writing it seems more obvious, especially when I strip off all the manipulative pretense, that I've been habitually using to alter and color the appearance of my expressions whenever I communicate with others.

I am not alone in doing this, nor are psychopaths the only group of people who do it. Everybody do it! The difference between non-psychopathic people and me probably is that if they stripped off all pretense and coloring from their expressions, the result wouldn't be so very different from what it is when they use pretense and coloring. But the difference between how I seem when I include pretense in my self-presentation and how I express myself, and when I am being completely honest, is enormous!

I can tell quite easily from the reactions I receive when I uphold my frankness while engaging in debates on various forums and message boards where antisocial and psychopathic subjects are being discussed.

In my offline reality I mostly create my reputation as a forthcoming, frank and energetic person who is very willing to help people (especially with psychological, relationship, and general social interactive and self esteem issues), but who is also (sometimes brutally) honest... the kind of person who 'takes no shit' and demands the same honesty from others that I give myself. It's a reputation that makes some people afraid of me - especially those who have something to hide, but regrettably also some of those who might benefit from the "therapeutic advice" I am known for being able to provide. Mostly, though, it means people have great respect for me and that they are careful about what they say in my presence, careful to not lie, plain and simple.
This is the most common reputation I build for myself around neurotypical people.

But I also sometimes create a reputation for myself where I am known to be a very forthright, honest, very helpful, kind and understanding with great respect for the feelings of others, and as a very humble person!

As my Reader is aware of, both of the above descriptions of my offline reputations are results of my manipulation; especially the latter doesn't have much in it that fits the real Zhawq profile.

I am not humble. And I don't think I have reason to be humble! - Do I think I will ever face a situation where I should be humble?... As things are at present I don't see much that speaks for this being very likely. Yet, I won't say it's not going to happen. And if it happens some day, if I somehow get into a situation with a person or entity that calls upon this feeling in me, I will not have any problem with showing it.

This is the difference between me and a narcissist: To the narcissist being so great that he has no reason to be humble is his main priority. But to me it doesn't matter! I can be humble if there's a good reason to be so, it doesn't hurt my self esteem to meet someone who is better at something or overall a greater person than I am. I'll jump at the opportunity to learn something so I can grow myself, and how can that be negative?

I'll investigate Grandiosity in more detail in the future. In the meantime, I hope everybody are feeling good as the people you are.

___

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Truth or Myth: The Psychopathic Stare. (Part 5)

Dr. Robert Hare writes ('Without Conscience'):

Many people find it difficult to deal with intense, emotionless, or "predatory" stare of the psychopath. Normal people maintain close eye contact with others for a variety of reasons, but the fixated stare of the psychopath is more prelude to self-gratification and the exercise of power than simple interest or empathic caring.

And:

Some people respond to the emotionsless stare of the psychopath with considerable discomfort. Normal people maintain close eye contact with others for a variety of reasons, but the fixated stare of the psychopath is more a prelude to self-gratification and the exercise of power than simple interest or emmpathic caring. ... Some people respond to the emotionless stare of the psychopath, with considerable discomfort, almost as if they feel like potential prey in the presence of a predator.

The words he use are typical for how many so called victims describe psychopaths, but non-victimized people describe it in the same manner, though perhaps generally with slightly less dramatic words.

An example is how author James Clarke in 'Last Rampage' describes a convicted murderer named Gary Tyson:

But Gary's most striking physical feature--the thing most people noticed and never forgot--was his deep-set, expressionless ... eyes. It was as if his eyes had no connection with any emotion he expressed. Whatever his mood--whether he was angry, jovial, or anything in between--his eyes remained the same. Empty. It was impossible to tell what Gary was actually thinking or feeling looking at his eyes ... His stare was riveting, unsettling, with a mlign intensity. What people remembered most about Gary were those cold, hard eyes.

Oddly, this is almost word to next what a very few people have said about me. I'm happy to be able to say that it has happened only on a very few occasions that I have been described that way, and usually people remember quite different things about me.

Another description by a "victim" is much more like how people typically see me. Again, from 'Without Conscience':

I found it difficult to look at his eyes because they confused me. I didn't know what was behind them and they didn't tell me what he was thinking or what his intentions were.

From 'Echoes in the Darkness' by Joseph Wambaugh:

His gaze was so intense it could transfix, so his eyes were variously described as "poetic", "icy" or "hypnotic", depending upon his moods.

This comes closest to the way my eyes and my gaze is most often described. I hear it so often that I'm inclined to think it's likely to be how people really see me, and it fits well with how I intend them to see me.

As I've mentioned, psychopaths are not all alike, and intelligence level differs. Most who are familiar with psychopaths have met the simple, petty thieves types who have no self understanding and who walks like elephants all over the place (I'm often surprised at how these folk manage to succeed at anything at all).

I would like to finish this article with a few words of caution:

Psychopaths, like other people, are not all alike, not in how we look at people, and not in how we behave or what we like or don't like, etc. We're different people.

What's more, neurotypicals - those we call 'normal people' - can have a peculiar stare as well!...

Sometimes when I'm talking with someone, exchanging courtesies, I notice that even though they smile and say nice things and are clearly very interested in me, they have this unblinking gaze that follows my every move. I imagine some people would feel uncomfortable when somebody looks at them like this. In a way it's not unlike the way I sometimes look at people. The difference is only that they make sure to signal good will, and I sometimes do the opposite, or I don't signal anything. But I generally have the impression that those who look at me like this are merely being very anxious. It's not a controlling or soulless stare, it's a slightly frightened stare. I have no idea if it is me personally who make them uncomfortable or uneasy, or if it's how they generally feel when they meet new people. It's most likely a little bit of both.

So don't try to label or judge people by their stare or lack of stare... Because, it's basically not possible and you won't succeed. The way someone stares at you is not in itself useful as a basis for determining whether s/he is a psychopathic individual. You need to take the whole context of the situation in which you notice it into consideration.

.....

I didn't want to use Ted Bundy as an example of the psychopathic stare, but he remains the best example that I can find without having to do extensive searches, and I'm late. I really didn't want to include him, for he annoys me, I don't like the fact that he does look like me as I looked on that picture when I was 16, and as I no doubt still look from time to time. I didn't want to include him because he happens to be a serial killer, and that is far from 'typical' for a psychopath.
But now that I've chosen to use him anyway, I'll add that he didn't always have this slightly awkward stiff gaze. It seems to be a kind of gaze that pops up from time to time.

Here is a picture of Gary Tison. I can't see anything odd about his eyes or the way he looks at the camera. Maybe others can see it. Robert Hare above writes about reasons for maintaining close eye contact. And I think this is pretty much all it is: Remaining close eye contact. There's generally nothing special about my eyes or other psychopaths' eyes, but we use our eyes differently, and that's what creates the illusion of a "cold" or "emotionsless" stare. I've included the picture of Gary Tison to have at least something other than Ted Bundy.



.....

I can pretty much tell when I have 'the stare' now, but I have to be focusing on myself or I won't notice. That's when others may see it, but mostly there're other things going on, I'm talking, gesticulating, etc., so my stare isn't what they'll remember. Of course, once in a while someone does, clinicians especially will of course make note of it.

___

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Truth or Myth: The Psychopathic Stare. (Part 4)

The Psychopathic Stare refer to not one, but at least two characteristics that people notice about some psychopaths' gaze.

The Reader has probably guessed that I am one of the psychopaths who can have this 'psychopathic stare'. But it isn't as simple as saying I have a cold or soulless stare. There seem to be more than one kind of stare associated with psychopaths.

One is the consciously controllable kind of stare, which is also one of the more common ways that some psychopaths use their gaze to control people. But how consciously the individual uses it differs greatly, and I've no doubt that the simpleton "conman" I met when I first arrived in a major city tried to use it on me, but he had no real awareness of what he was doing. Had he known, and had he taken the time to analyse his performance and the reaction of his subjects, he'd have realized how exaggerated his mannerisms were and would've learned to make his stare fit the individual situation and the individual subject.

I use this technique myself sometimes, and very successfully. This is not because of my eyes as such, it's because I have the psychological expertise and experience that tells me how and when it will be useful to use this kind of behavior to make people react and do what I want them to.

But there's another kind of psychopathic gaze that is harder to pin point.

I used to have a kind of very unsettling stare in my youth, which I may still have once in a while. I like to think I'm very good at controlling it, and most of of the time there's nothing odd about the way I look at people, at least not in the sense that we're talking about a 'creepy' stare that holds people. But it wasn't always like that. I actually used to be a rather typical example of the psychopath with the cold and creepy stare... but, as always, I'm not really typical about anything, and I'm also not typical in regard to psychopathic staring, for once I realized that I had such a stare, I made sure to change it, and I did it fast.

The way I found out was when I saw a photo of myself. It had been taken at the very moment where I made the stare, briefly turning to look at the camera. I was 16 at the time, and my friends had commented on that odd stare I sometimes had, telling me it sometimes made people feel I was paralyzing them by the way I looked at them. I had never been able to understand what they meant until I saw this picture, because I remembered exactly the situation in which it had been taken and knew how I had been looking at somebody else, and then at the camera.
I decided to change it the instant I made this realization, and in the following weeks I practised how to not stare like that, even in the situations where it felt natural to me to do it.

It wasn't as easy as to never ever stare at anybody like that again, of course. After all, it's my natural way of looking at people when I feel intense, and sometimes, especially in new territory, new locations, and new situations, I will sometimes take myself in doing it again. Sometimes I can tell I'm doing it by the way people look back at me. But mostly I have a pretty good control with how I look at people now, and I've become much more aware of how it affects people.

Again, for the sake of honesty, I have to say that lately I've begun to wonder about how atypical I actually am, and if it's not more my former ignorance about psychopathy that is still speaking when I say, and think, I'm not typical. There certainly do seem to turn up one trait after the other that sounds boringly typical in regard to psychopathy traits and behavior.

And to add to this notion, there are certain remarks and statements that I remember hearing and reading about myself, which could mean that I do indeed also have the unemotional, cold stare.

.....

In Part 5, the final part of this article series, I will give some descriptions about the psychopathic stare as other people see it, and about how I fit into the picture.

___

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Indigo Child or Psychopath?

I came across an interesting bit while running a search about psychopathy. The author of this article clearly sees psychopaths as the evil of the world and the very reason for the present cultural decline.

At the present time, there is something very scary going on in the metaphysical community: talk about the so-called "Indigo Children." One of the chief promoters of this idea, Wendy Chapman, writes:

Indigo Children are the current generation being born today and most of those who are 8 years old or younger. They are different. They have very unique characteristics that set them apart from previous generations of children. [...]

These are the children who are often rebellious to authority, nonconformist, extremely emotionally and sometimes physically sensitive or fragile, highly talented or academically gifted and often metaphysically gifted as well, usually intuitive, very often labeled ADD, either very empathic and compassionate OR very cold and callous, and are wise beyond their years. Does this sound like yourself or your child?

Indigos have come into this world with difficult challenges to overcome. Their extreme levels of sensitivity are hard to understand and appreciate by parents who don't share this trait. Their giftedness is unusual in such high numbers. Their nonconformity to systems and to discipline will make it difficult to get through their childhood years and perhaps even their adult years. It is also what will help them accomplish big goals such as changing the educational system, for instance. Being an Indigo won't be easy for any of them, but it foretells a mission. The Indigo Children are the ones who have come to raise the vibration of our planet! These are the primary ones who will bring us the enlightenment to ascend.

Sounds like a severe case of denial and wishful thinking, in my opinion.

Sounds like someone who has understood some of the central aspects of what I have been wanting to put forth for a very long time.
I don't know about 'Indigo' and the other spiritual aspects of the theory, it does indeed sound a tad naive New Age-ish, but who am I to tell someone else their personal spiritual experiences are bogus? What matters is if they have valid viewpoints about the part of reality that we share.

But, as we already understand the psychological reality is merely a tool for the Theological Reality, I suspect that the reader already has jumped ahead of me here and realizes what a big snow-job this "indigo children" deal is. Ms. Chapman has kindly provided a check-list to determine an "indigo child." After learning what we have about psychopaths, let's have a look at her list:

Have strong self esteem, connection to source
Know they belong here until they are told otherwise
Have an obvious sense of self
Have difficulty with discipline and authority
Refuse to follow orders or directions
Find it torture to waiting in lines, lack patience
Get frustrated by ritual-oriented systems that require little creativity
Often see better ways of doing thing at home and at school
Are mostly nonconformists
Do not respond to guilt trips, want good reasons
Get bored rather easily with assigned tasks
Are rather creative
Are easily distractible, can do many things at once
Display strong intuition
Have strong empathy for others or NO empathy
Develop abstract thinking very young
Are gifted and/or talented, highly intelligent
Are often identified or suspected of having ADD or ADHD, but can focus when they want to
Are talented daydreamers and visionaries
Have very old, deep, wise looking eyes
Have spiritual intelligence and/or psychic skills
Often express anger outwardly rather than inwardly and may have trouble with rage
Need our support to discover themselves
Are here to change the world - to help us live in greater harmony and peace with one another and to raise the vibration of the planet

What we see above is a list that includes certain definitely psychopathic behaviors along with behaviors of gifted children. We have to wonder at the attempt to weave the two together.

What we see above is a list that includes certain definitely human behaviors which are not uncommon in gifted children during times such as our present. We have to wonder at the scarseness of people who have seen how the positive and reactive negative are weaved together.

___

Monday, June 13, 2011

Truth or Myth: The Psychopathic Stare. (Part 3)














Next time you find yourself dealing with an individual whose nonverbal mannerisms or gimmicks--riveting eye contact, dramatic hand movements, "stage scenery," and so on--tend to overwhelm you, close your eyes or look away and carefully listen to what the person is saying.

The above is advice from Dr. Robert D. Hare.

I can't count the number of times I've met psychopaths trying to do this kind of thing. These are typically the more simple minded and unintelligent, but of course, like all psychopaths they think they're brilliant where in fact they're so transparent it's laughable. On the occasions I've encountered them - and yeah, they'll attempt to play even other psychopaths, for they're so stuck up their own asses and don't see anybody else but themselves (ref. some of the idiots at some of the comment boards on other blogs kept by, or about, psychopathy/sociopathy/AsPD, who like to tell us all how pathetic we are, that we're 'posers' and that they're the only 'real' sociopaths ('sociopath' is the fashionable word that these mud-brains like to associate themselves with now adays).

I can recall one incident... I must've been about 12, and I had just arrived at the central railway station in my state's capital city, and I was now looking for somebody I could approach and hopefully convince to take me in, give me housing and pay for my meals and clothes, etc.

Some psychopaths make their living by hanging out where out-of-state people and tourists first arrive, looking for someone who is lost so that they can play the helpful friendly guy and bleed them off of their possessions and money.
Now one of these guys had spotted me, so he came over and began talking, following and keeping very close to me, doing what is referred to as "intruding on your personal space". When someone does this they position themselves so close to you it is difficult for you to look anywhere without looking at them, or to turn anywhere without turning directly towards them.

My reaction was to look away and past him, I looked around at everything else but him while I turned on a look to signal to him that I really was not interested and that I was very, very bored. But as is so very typical for this type of psychopath, he wasn't very good at reading people. - These idiots may 'seem' good at reading people, but they're not. What they do is really nothing more than follow a few very simple techniques that work only on the very insecure. They never rise above petty cons and pickpocketing.

Anyway, he failed to see my bored look, so he wasted more of both his and my time, virtually creeping all up into my face while he kept talking and talking and talking, non-stop. Even though I couldn't see his face clearly, I could see his non-blinking stare out of the corner of my eye.

In a sense I automatically did what Hare advices, but I did it instinctively. I certainly didn't listen to the guy, though, and definitely not "carefully". I already knew what he was saying, and all he did was repeating himself and adding a few more "persuasive" details about all the great things he could show me and help me with, and that I of course would be lost without his help wherefore I needed him.

He eventually realized I wasn't the easy prey he'd initially taken me for (no doubt due to my obvious youth), and at some point he silently withdrew. I had my own attention on the subject I'd already chosen before the idiot came over, so I didn't see if he showed any signs of irritation or disappointment when he gave up. My guess is that he's not shown much of anything as he saw he only partially had my attention, so he probably just left - or maybe he spotted another, more promising subject.

So it can attest to the fact that at least some of Hare's advice will work, but I don't think a more intelligent psychopath will be dissuaded  so easily, and most people will also not be able to keep pretense up when pressured by a very insisting behavior from someone who stares at them intently. I can do it, and easily, but I'm in a some ways like these people and know how they think, plus I don't get intimidated or insecure. It's just not in my personality or psychological make-up.

.....

This story is about one aspect of the infamous psychopathic stare. But there's apparently more to it than what one can use decisively.

However, there's more to the psychopath's cold stare...

Hang on for Part 4.

___

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Truth or Myth: The Psychopathic Stare. (Part 2)

When I wrote this article I decided to see what a search-engine would come up with on the phrase Psychopathic Stare.

Here is what it said already on the 3.rd result:

The Reptilian Stare
Sunday May 2004.

NOTICE: These pictures are here to best demonstrate the Reptilian stare. Are the people here Reptilian? There is no way of knowing for sure. The best representation of the stare is Elvis.

This stare as seen in these photos are what is called the psychopathic stare and or reptilian stare in psychiatry. These pictures are to give one an idea of what the actual stare looks like. Some pictures here are the real deal. Jim Morrison called himself the Lizard King.

Below this text we see three pictures: One of Avril Lavigne, the Canadian Teenage rock star, one of Michale Jackson - a photo which has obviously been altered greatly. This is one of the pictures I've seen that best demonstrates this type of obvious photo manipulation. Was it done by the website's owners? There is no way of knowing for sure. The best representation of the topic of Reptilian Stare with the includion of psychopaths as selfgiven examples of the infantile 'Reptilian Aliens Conspiracy' idea is this website... along with countless others, no doubt.


Among the photographs of famous people are none of Ted Bundy. It's easy to see they've ditched Ted Bundy because they wanted all their subjects to be generally loved, and non-criminal. Their fundament for creating fear is to claim their "enemies" are free and living among us.

In the world of the occult the Reptilians are what we call psychopathic. Here is a list of traits from the same link above.

And then they go on to list Hare's 'Key Symptoms of Psychopathy' (Superficial and glib, egocentric and grandiose, no remorse or guilt, etc.). Finally, before the main body of the website, which consists of a number of photos of celebrities, they write:

The bottom line is that there is no difference that can be found between a Reptilian and a Psychopath.
Come again? There's no difference between me and my lovely snake? Have these people lost their sense of vision, or have they lost their minds? They've clearly lost something!

But perhaps I should clarify why I am different from a reptile. Let's use my snake as an example:

My snake doesn't have fully developed arms and leg, for one. It has four little pieces of bone hidden under it's skin, where could've been arms and legs had it chosen another route for developing as a species. I have both arms and legs, and they're fully developed. At the end of each arm are a hand, which both have all five fingers. The police, FBI, and Interpol can confirm as much; they all have my finger prints. Furthermore, I'm using my fingers to write these words, believe it or not! Some people who are paralyzed use a computerized laser beam which they control with their mouth or by moving their head, to write, but most of them do still have hands. There're people who don't have fingers, granted, but I am not one of them. No kidding!

My snake also doesn't have a website. Believe me, I'm not easily fooled, so if it had a website, or attempted to set one up, I would know! But my snake doesn't even have an interest in having a website, he takes absolutely no interest even the most fundamental of computer stuff and to date has not uttered a word about wanting to get a website. So in short, he has none!

Furthermore, my snake also doesn't have the gift of speech. He has never engaged in a single debate with me, not ever! And much less an argument. Then again, he's the perfect keeper of secrets, in fact I wouldn't get far if I try to tell my snake anything, because like all of his species, he is def... which I am also not! I have both all of my fingers, my hearing, and everything else that we know to be part of the healthy human body, and that means I am very different from my snake and from any other reptile!

I could mention many, many things that makes me different from a reptile, even if I may have a tendency to stare at people from time to time.
Yeah, I know, it's creepy. I kept freaking out my sister because of it, but recently she gave birth to a charming, wonderful and very human boy. And guess what, he's freaking her out even more, because like all babies he tend to stare at mommy! So now it is I who have to rush over and take him away from my sister who is frozen with fear... I guess that's the way one should react to these reptilian stares, yes? Well, that's what happens with my sister. She was beside herself, not knowing what to do, until late last night when she called me and said things would solve themselves because her son would die from hunger (remember, she can't tale the way he stares at her when she holds him and feeds him: That's when babies stares the most, you know). But I was horrified and got an idea. I said: Why don't you put him up for adoption in the nearby zoo's reptilian terrarium? So that's what's she doing as we speak. Ain't that nice?

You no doubt think my emotions are like those of a reptile too, yes?

Well, you can believe me when I say that my Contempt is very, very strong, and get this: My contempt for you is beyond measure! So I dare you to come over to my website and find out if I am, or am not, speaking the truth.

I will even use my unemotional stare just for you, you despicable lowlife! I don't often use words like this about people, and especially not in the context of my website, but you're below that rule. Or above it, if you insist. It doesn't matter, for my words can reach you at any altitude. All I need is your attention. In this case I've not bothered to get it, because I know you're beyond reach in terms of reason and logic, which is also why I've chosen to use the phrases about that I do. Maybe you're a psychopath yourself in which case I'll not be able hurt you with words, and in which case I understand what you're doing. I am speaking to you under the assumption that you're a neurotypical person, and that's what makes you absolutely despicable!

Of course neither my stare nor my words would frighten you, for you're already frightened! And of what? Of something that doesn't exist, a fantasy, a paranoid vicious game to play with gullible and easily persuaded! <-- That's what they say I do to others: Play vicious games with the easily persuaded and the gullible.
But let me tell you this: I never ever had to make up ridiculous lies like yours in order to do it.

The most frightening to any person (if s/he is emotionally inclined) is the truth, and truth is what has always been my most effective weapon. That is also why I know you'd almost certainly never take me up on my invitation to come over and engage in a discussion with me. You'll say No, and excuse it with this: "Zhawq is a reptilian, so he's evil, and we shouldn't mingle with the evil! - And we don't know if he'll use his powers to kill me over the Internet if I speak with him, so I'm right to watch out for my safety. After all, I'm the one who'll save the world, and that's a very important mission in life!".

But everybody know that you're really just afraid of the truth, and those who know me well will think "What a shame, I'd have loved to see Zhawq tearing your skin of lies painfully off your despicable excuse for a human body and exhibit the rotten intestines of light-sensitive truth beneath it!".

Don't worry, friends, there'll be others!

.....

But how about the psychopathic stare, is it real at all, and if it is, do I have this psychopathic stare?

Follow me on part 3.

___ 

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Truth or Myth: The Psychopathic Stare. (Part 1)

'Staring eyes' is a trait that has become intricately linked to the word 'psychopath', but it seems to be generally associated with the mystical and menacing, that which we aren't completely comfortable with, but also which we have a deep fascination for. I remember hearing about the 'cold stare' of many a villain long before I was connected with villainy myself.

We can probably all recall experiences of some funny situations and games from our childhood or youth where we would try and make the most distorted facial expressions we could as we imagined what 'crazy' or 'insane' people look like. A 'staring gaze' was always an important part of the performance, just as it was when we tried to imitate what we imagined a hypnotist looks like when he is about to hypnotize his - unknowing, of course - victim, or a vampire when he is just about to sink his teeth into the neck of his prey.

Somehow psychopaths and a staring gaze have become linked in the same manner. I find it in the descriptions on various websites and blogs - such as this one - given people who know or lived with a psychopath, I find in the wordings of "victims", and I find it from time to time in the descriptions from people who ask me about people they have met and whether or not they may be a psychopath, as in the following quote: 

Three weeks ago I met someone at a bar downtown. He's the most interesting man I've ever met, and a gentleman. He totally fascinates me when he tells me about what he's experienced in his life, he never gives me any details I can check up on, but somehow it doesn't matter because he's so lively and interesting, he makes me feel like nothing else matters because he's there and he's interested in me. Actually he proposed to me yesterday, and that's why I decided to write to you. He turned up at my work and proposed right there in front of all my colleagues. I know he meant it and it came from his heart, but somehow it made me feel awkward because I wasn't ready to be committed so soon ... Do you think that was wrong of me? I wanted to say yes with all my heart, but my brain told me I should wait. so I hesitated and the situation became awkward and I think I may have disappointed him. ... I didn't really think about it the first night when he first contacted me in the bar, but when we had dinner the first time I noticed he had a funnny way of looking at me, I don't know how to explain it, it's like he has this kind of unmoving stare. I know it sounds strange but it's not really creepy or anything, it's just something I noticed and at first I thought it was because he was in love with me, that he likes to look at me. But when he proposed to me yesterday it just somehow felt different. How can I explain. ... I mentioned it to my room mate and she told me it was the look of a psychopath so I did some searching on the Internet ... Then I found your website ... Do you think the guy I met was a psychopath?

I wrote back that there is a possibility that he's a psychopath, and that I say this not only because of the description of his gaze; there're other things that suggests he may be a psychopathic individual. But I will have to know much more about his behavior and in much more detail before I will even attempt to give a statement in that regard. Of course she is also aware that I don't have any official education that allows or gives me ability to make assessments. We're presently having a correspondence.


There're also a few of the psychopaths who have written to me who mention they've been told they have a 'stiff stare' or 'empty stare'. I also still come across articles written by clinicians and professionals who mentions in their listing of traits to look for, that we, psychopaths, tend to "hold people fast" with our stare, which is also what the reader who wrote the above quote spoke about.

So the notion is alive and well. But psychopaths are not insane, we're not vampires, and we can't hypnotize people on the spot and against their will. Yet we're categorized with these, and I think some of the answer to why that is can be found in that to most people, and even to scientific researchers, there's still a air of mystery around us, we're still not completely 'figured out', mapped and defined. And the non-existing connection between psychopaths and insanity still flourishes in the common imagination. But the question is still: Where does this connection between us and a staring gaze really stem from, and is there any truth to it?

As I will show in the second part of this article, the psychopathic stare is far from just a urban legend.

___

Thursday, June 9, 2011

My First Memory.

I am not an overly violent person. In fact I am generally and mostly very easy going, forthcoming and friendly, and I smile very often at people, also when they've given me no particular reason to do so. But my very first memory happens to be associated with a violent act that I did. Maybe I should tell my Reader the story as it happened from the beginning...

The following is a description of my first memory, and of what happened around the bit of the incident that I recall.

Being viewed as different began even before I entered kindergarden. In fact the start happened sometime between my 1.st and 2.nd birthday and lead to my being transferred from a traditional state orphanage to a psychiatric orphanage - also of the state - so I could be "observed", because I displayed unusual behavior for my age. The Psychiatric "Orphanage Journal" from that period describes me as being very outgoing and also aggressive toward the other kids, it calls me 'prone to throwing tantrums' and describes me as unresponsive to the adults' attempts at getting into closer emotional contact with me. It states that I didn't react to invitations and encouragements to make emotional contact, and that I never became attached to neither the staff nor the other children.

There are also several notes about incidents where I had to be disciplined because I was being physically intrusive and "unusually rough" with the other children. Indeed, one of the descriptions is about an incident where "He took a toy from another child and bashed his head with it several times until nurse [name] rushed over and had to abruptly pull him away from the other kid".
This is the first memory I have in my life.

The journal states my age at the time: I was 1 yrs and 2 mths old.
But I do not remember the incident where I stole a toy from another kid and then hit him. What I remember is the punishment I was given afterwards.

In my memory I am on a stairway on my way up to the dormatory located upstairs, where I am going to be punished and then put to bed without dinner. To be forced upstairs before bedtime is the most dreaded punishment. I know I will get spanked, but it is the humiliation of being put to bed in the middle of the day that angers and upsets me because it means I am smaller than all the other children, and that I alone am being denied playing with the toys and climbing about, while I will be able to hear the rest of the kids downstairs, still playing.

On the stairway I have reached about 5 or 6 steps up and stopped climbing. Now I sit down close to the bannister, so that I can look across the room below. It is the room where we infants are when we have play time. At the wall opposite from where I am sitting  is a wide double-door, and I am looking in it's direction.

As a "funny" side note, I know where the kid I have harrassed had been located when I did it, even though I remember nothing of the event itself.

The reason I'm looking in the direction of the big door is that I know the head nurse will be walking through this door if or when she comes, and I am hoping - no, I am insisting - that she comes. She must come! I hope she will come back and tell the other nurses that I shall not be punished after all.

On this day I don't recall anything prior to the moment when I sit down on the stairs, but it is obvious that the head nurse has been the one to condone the decision of how I should be punished. This incident is beyond doubt the first time I have been punished by order from her directly. I think she was the one to tell me personally that I was to be punished, and how.

And this is the reason why this became my first memory. I was shocked, I was angry, I felt wronged. I was becoming a small baby again and would be abandoned and not be allowed to play or eat because I would be a very small baby again.
I did know there was something I had done to another kid, and that it had made the nurses very angry. I had no sensation of what I had done actually being bad or wrong, only that for some reason it had made the nurses become angry and give me a scare because of it. I had done nothing wrong, but I was being punished because they thought I was a small baby - and small babies were not liked. Never be small! And of course, never be weak! If you want something, you go and get it. You can influence the adults to like you, by smiling, by standing up, etc., but sometimes for no apparent reason they would suddenly hate you and be mean to you, and there was nothing you could do about it, except be strong and learn more about the world.

Doing something wrong or bad is not why you get punished. Being small is!

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Saturday, June 4, 2011

Aboslutely No Remorse!



I was always certain I could feel Remorse despite the fact that I had never felt it, which I was quite aware of. The reason for this, I thought, was very obvious: It was because I had never had any reason to feel remorse. And this way of thinking is as recent as... well, right now, as I write these words! I actually still don't think I have any real reason to feel remorse for anything I've done. None of what I have done did I do just because I wanted to make the world suffer just because it would be fun to do so. I always thought I had a good reason for wanting to make the world - or some people in it - suffer. I had god reasons for each killing, for every torturing, for every time I made someone break down mentally. I had good reasons, my reasons. And never did I think of it as just being done for "fun" alone, I always felt there was something to be learned, something of value in some way, even when I wasn't sure what it was. - I guess this is what they mean when they talk about Entitlement, for I certainly felt entitled.


And this is the point I see can find some problematic ground with some of my Readers, but I must be honest, or this whole project, Psychopathic Writings, will be meaningless.
The fact that I don't think I have any reason to feel remorse... that I've never thought I had any reason to feel remorse... means I don't think I should feel remorse after any of the killings in my past. I'm sure, that if I thought I had reason to feel remorse, then I probably could. As I write this, I try to imagine how that must be, to feel remorse. But I would be lying if I claimed to be able to imagine such a state of mind. Honestly it doesn't really seem very important to me either. What good would it do to anybody if I felt remorse, here, alone in my home?

How can I explane something like this? I know how alien it must be to many, maybe to most, people in our present time. I think all I can do is to say it as it is and not try too much to explain, except for the obvious things that I think have validity.

It's not that I do not care whether I do something wrong - or at least it wasn't so at the time, not really. No, I can't see any reason to feel remorse, because I honestly don't think what I've done is that bad... especially considered all the facts about how my own situation was on the times when I committed them.
There have been times when I did harmful things out of curiosity and without any other reasons such as revenge, f.x.. And even in those cases do I feel I was basically justified, because I did what I did in order to get an experience I felt would be good for me, f.x. in that it would provide me with the "knowledge" that my initial curiosity sprang from an urge to acquire. Many of my reasons (in the past) for doing some very 'horrid' things may seem incredibly small and flimsy, but in my view every single experience I got was part of a whole that I'm sure has a purpose, even though I didn't know (and still don't know) what that purpose was or could be.
This is where I can now recognize what is called 'magical thinking' playing a role in the way I thought and rationalized my actions. It's clearly connected to the thesis of Grandiose sense of Self Importance or Worth.

All of this, especially when I write it down in this manner and use the terminology of the definitions used to diagnose me, I can see why the professionals think I must be a psychopath.

But here comes the reasoning behind one of my first articles, in which I begin by stating that I know I'm a good person, in:

I've never felt I do what I do - however horrible - is just for my own gratification. Yet, my own gratification is always at the center of things. But that is because my gratification is provided in order for me to be able to function at my best. I do have an unusually strong need for stimulation - this I don't attribute to a shallow emotional life, on the contrary, I've always seen myself as someone who has a very strong inner life that demands Existense, demands to get into that Dance of lLfe - to put it poetic - the ongoing and dramatic exchange between forces and extremes. It is my hunger and appetite for life that is unusually strong.

How can I make a strong appetite for life fit with the idea of shallow and limited emotion!?

So they say I have flat affect because I don't seem to react to most of the dramatic impressions or sensations given me. But in my opinion this is not because I don't feel anything at all, it's because I'm so used to feeling a lot all the time that it takes something very unusual to make me react visibly.

To get to the central point: I have always felt sure that everything I do is for the good in the larger scheme of things. That's all I can say. I have no actual religious philosophy, nor do I hallucinate or hear voices. There're no symptoms of mental illness.
But I also have never thought I didn't want the best for mankind or the world. I may not have thought the opposite all the time either, but does that make me ill willed? If asked, and when I ask myself: "Zhawq, do you want death on the world, or do you want happiness for the world?" I truly did think I wanted happiness for it! And I truly thought - and still think it possible - that I could play a part in making things happen.

I still want the best for the world, but I no longer believe the best can happen without some agony. This is the sad news I have learned on my recent journey. Ironic indeed that I caused destruction while I believed it was possible to make things well without pain. And now that I actually don't think pain can or should be avoided, I am finally no longer causing any destruction, but in fact am being helpful even to those who may still want me destroyed.

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