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There are More Men than Women: Are You a Psychopath?

By Lida Prypchan
“Triple I” = Impulsiveness + Instability + Inability to Adapt to One’s Environment
NightwatcherbySWwithphotocreditUsually, one associates the sociopath (psychopathic or antisocial personality) with delinquency.  Many others associate it with sexual offenders.  There will be a few or many cases, but it is known that not every delinquent is a psychopath.
As a general rule, psychopaths are not held in psychiatric institutes for exhibiting psychopathic behavior, but rather for presenting another types of psychiatric problems that complicate his/her already unbalanced psyche, such as for example: nervous breakdown, depression, suicidal gestures, alcoholism and drug abuse, or a delusional episode.  But once they have resolved their immediate conflict, it becomes much more difficult to hold them in the institution, since the person who suffers this type of illness is a glib and persuasive speaker who is able to manipulate the group, leading them to revolt.  A typical example of this is observed in the movie “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” in which Jack Nicholson feigns being a psychopath.  He incites his fellow incarcerates to rebellion (plans escapes, steals a bus for a trip to the beach, etc.).  A psychopath, in general , is an ill person whose intellectual capacity, or rather, his/her intelligence,  is not affected by the illness: they have a normal IQ (average) or higher.
The characteristics of the psychopathic personality, from my point of view, are highly questionable.  I think that one can only make a proper diagnosis if one looks very carefully at his/her life history.  The classic texts of psychiatry define a sociopath as an individual who throughout his/her life shows serious difficulties with conforming to the rules of life that society imposes.  The ultimate cause of all of his/her social missteps is the “triple i”: instability, impulsiveness, and an inability to adapt to their environment.  This “triple i” converts the sociopath’s life into a closed circle.

As I understand it, since a sociopath is an individual who internally feels a deep  discomfort, a discomfort that is manifested in continual boredom, he/she puts into play his/her impulsiveness in order to break out of that tedium.  The sociopath then engages in excessive consumption of drugs and alcohol and becomes involved in dangerous activities.  But his/her instability impedes him or her from maintaining relationships and therefore the person becomes unable to adapt to his/her environment.
This illness is seen more in men than in women, especially those from dysfunctional families.  Statistics show that the probable causes of sociopathic behavior have a dual origin: genetic and environmental.  The genetic approach is based on the finding of a psychopathic family history: a noteworthy proportion of alcoholics and sociopaths among the men and hysteria in the women having been observed among family members.  Regarding the environmental approach, it has been observed that there are more sociopaths who come from unstable environments and lack education (abandoned children, broken families, the emotionally rejected, and the abused).

The childhood of a sociopath is characterized by a marked lack of discipline regarding both school and parents.  This behavior is particularly acute in the adolescent stage, in which the subject may even commit petty criminal acts.  In adulthood this behavior prevails ,but it is extended to almost every sphere of individual action.  The person has difficulty maintaining a stable state (instability), engages in fantasy business endeavors that end in failure, is a parasite regarding his wife or his family, or otherwise resorts to delinquency (theft, fraud, forgery of signatures, issuing bad checks, usurpation of titles and professions, use and possession of drugs, and heterosexual and homosexual prostitution that may implicitly entail the blackmail of the victim) .  His/her emotional life is equally unstable: separations, divorces, family abandonment , and ephemeral relationships.  In general, the person flees in the face of conflict and commitments to others.  He/she  is on a constant search for new adventures to distract him/her.  The person does not learn from his/her mistakes and inexorably falls again and again into the same patterns without experiencing pain or remorse (if he/she caused someone moral damage), and does not take preventive measures to avoid making the same errors.  The person is unable to maintain his/her achievements (he has difficulties in projecting the future).  The person does not endure his/her frustrations, and when suffering them reacts in an uncontrolled and disproportionate manner.  The person deceives him/herself and others, confusing fantasy with reality.  The person is more amoral than evil.  As I mentioned before, to me all of these characteristics seem very questionable.

I wonder: What triumph is lasting in life? Who does not make the same mistake various times? Is every drug addict a psychopath?  Since the almost excessive consumption of alcohol is so common in our country, is this is psycopathic trait?  Divorces and separations:  do they only occur in psychopaths?  Is this not just the way we now live?  For that reason, as I explained previously, only by combining many of these characteristics are we able to distinguish the psychopath from the stable individual of our era.

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