Psychopaths are awesome / psychopaths are terrible

This week, I encountered two different (and ostensibly opposing) views of psychopathy. More specifically, they both relate to psychopaths’ quality of life, and they both touch on a previous post of mine. One is largely critical and pitying, the other very positive and pro-active. I have nothing much to add, except to say that I think both views are correct, and offer you the reader an insight into the wider spectrum of psychopathy.

First, the bad, written to me by Positivagirl:

I have never had a problem with sociopaths writing commenting on this site. The blog was called dating a sociopath for a reason. As that was what it was about. I am not one for silencing anyone’s point of view or freedom of speech. In fact I think that you can learn a lot when sociopaths comment. I think. As you are so obvious. (or you are to me) – probably lots of other people too. I don’t think that socio’s should be living on a remote island. I just wish that they didn’t use what they do have, to cause harm to others. As there is no need for that. From my point of view, I think that sociopathy is a disadvantage in life. You go round in circles, struggle with boredom. Life doesn’t really move forward. So there is little reward. Personally I think its a disability. Although I am sure that you don’t see It like that. Imagine being a ‘label’ or having the same personality traits as so many other people, that people can write about you? What I do think is a shame, is that there is a lack of support for sociopaths, not all want that, many think they don’t need that. But there are quite a few, that find it a negative. It must be hard to keep having to start again. I would find that difficult. I lived in the sociopaths life, for many years. We had some amazing times together – but he always had to destroy everything, not if – but when. He always would make things that were good – bad. For that, I do feel for you. I think its a disability. Internally I think you are weaker – which is why you need others to live off of. Like a child trapped in a grown ups body.

And let’s end with the good, written by a self-proclaimed psychopath in response to a Yahoo Answers survey of mine*:

You are being unimaginative and therefore failing to see the great opportunity here for a personal salvation. I am also a psychopath; was raised to it. A psychopath needs to be creative and intelligent and look a little further down the road than just the end of his nose, and longer than just at the short-term. If you really want a good life in this world and salvation in the next, you need to look at the strengths which being a psychopath gives you, to manipulate and change things. Instead of simply short-term manipulations in the moment, think about long-term goals such as the planet you live on being less polluted. Also reducing crime so that you yourself will be safer, thus increasing your own odds of survival. You have good reason to make this world a better place: You live in it. If you follow this line of thinking to its logical conclusion, you will find a very good path to salvation. You are more effective than an ordinary person would be at manipulating world events, so see the strength of being a psychopath. For instance, right now your very existence is threatened by this Iran nuclear “deal” which is really no “deal” at all, and I’ll just bet that, as a psychopath, you could figure out a way to stop it and reverse this trend of giving our physical survival over to our enemies. You can also find reasons to get along with a few people in order to create a nurturing home environment for yourself where your meals will be fixed and your laundry get done by devoted people who genuinely care about you and will nurse you when you are sick, look out for you and help protect your interests, et cetera. Being a psychopath is a challenge but it is also a great opportunity to design the best sort of life that any human being can have.

*More on that another time.

On a semi-related note, those of you with a sense of humour should check out Peep Show, a hilariously funny sitcom about two deadbeat losers, one of whom is a psychopath completely of the mold outlined by Positivagirl.