Tagged: psychopaths Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • James 01:26 on March 18, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: bad parenting, blast from the past, , , , , daughter, , , evil kids, , , kids, , , , psycho kids, psychopaths, , , shaming, , son   

    Interview with the mother of a psychopath 

    In which I interview Tina Taylor about her experiences as a mother of two (Pauleen, a psychopath and Marc, a neurotypical). What she talks about is as interesting as it is important to anyone reading who has a psychopath in the family. The interview was originally conducted last year. 

    Fox

    James Renard: Thank you for agreeing to do this. If I ask a question you don’t like, please just say so rather than making up an answer. Alright, could you briefly state the names and ages of your children, then tell us a little bit about their infancy? 

    Tina Taylor: My children are Pauleen, now 25, and Marc, now 18. Pauleen was a very easy baby. She only cried twice her whole life, and never as an infant. I just put her on a schedule for feeding because she might otherwise starve to death without a peep. I thought I was so lucky because of how easy I had it. She didn’t have terrible twos nor terrible threes. She only had one tantrum (because she wanted something in a store) but I didn’t give in. Starting at age two, she said, and did, some bizarre things out of the blue that stuck in my head – saying things such as, “Mommy, everybody thinks that I’m prettier than you.” I guess it was a competition. Other than that, I thought everything was smooth sailing until she hit age 6 when the lying was noticeable. Marc was a handful as a baby. He cried a lot during the first few months. He was very emotional during his twos and threes, but he did not stress me because he was so loving and cooperative. Starting from age two, he spoke truthfully, and I trust him completely. I did notice during their childhood that Marc’s behavior was markedly different from Pauleen’s. Marc was a difficult baby, but grew to be just such a joyful and helpful person. Pauleen was an easy baby but grew to complaining about everything and making offhand remarks.

    JR: I can imagine even psychopaths are terrible liars at 6. What was the most outrageously unbelievable lie that sticks out in your mind? Also, would you say that even while they were very young, you found it easier to get on with Marc than Pauleen?

    TT: I always had fun with Marc at every age. Pauleen switched from easygoing to impossible at age six. Her first grade teacher evaluated her and she was put on ADHD meds. It only partially helped. She pretended to take the meds and had us wondering why it wasn’t working. Did you know that psychopathy is a form of attention deficit, too? When Pauleen was 4 she said a man came in the apartment and put a knife to her belly. That was the whole story. It was very matter-of-fact, no hysterics, nothing. At the time, I did not know what to make of it.

    JR: No, I didn’t know that about attention deficit, and though I’m not surprised there’s a connection, it might be more a case of psychopathic behaviour being mistaken for ADHD.

    I’m sure it became noticeable to Pauleen that you were more easygoing with Marc. Do you think she may have ever felt less loved than her brother? Might she have been jealous of your closeness to Marc? So when she switched from “easygoing to impossible”, how did you react? Did you feel positive about your ability to overcome the problem or were you lost? How did the way you treated her change? 

    TT: When Marc was just newborn, Pauleen told her grandmother that I don’t love her anymore. Pauleen and I could never develop a closeness because what she did and said made me want to hide from her. Of course she noticed that I was more easy going with Marc as time went by. I was totally lost. I couldn’t understand why. I didn’t even realize how odd it was that she never cried, until she finally cried when she was a teenager and I was dumbstruck. She had never needed comforting her whole life. It looked fake because her face was not stressed, she just had tears. It gave me a weird feeling. The way I treated her was terrible. I could not handle her behavior and I did not know what to do at all. I went to counselling, but I still grew distanced from her every day. We used to sit and watch TV and say absolutely nothing to each other like strangers. This is why psychopathy badly needs to be identified in children. Parents could do a better job than I did at raising a psychopath. Psychopathic adults could advise what their needs were as children. I am very accepting of her psychopathy nowadays, but it is too late. Well, even though I accept that she has a condition that is not her fault, I don’t trust her at all. There is the matter of lying to me and stealing from me that makes me uncomfortable about having her in my home.

    JR: What can I say except thank you for having the courage to share that. It does take courage to admit screwing up as a parent. And gives a lot of context to your work and makes it very easy to see the motivation for your work. 

    So you were parenting from a position of ignorance, through no fault of your own, but you made those mistakes. That you have raised a well-adjusted son is evidence that you are a good mother, but you were completely unprepared to deal with a psychopath. Looking back, what would you have done differently? More importantly, what mistakes did you make that you would bunch together in a list of “don’ts” for other parents of psychopaths? 

    TT: Looking back, had I known that Pauleen had psychopathy, I would not have taken her biting remarks so hard. I would have seen her differently. For the most part, I believe I did a good job of making her mostly prosocial. I always believed in the positive reward system for children instead of punishment, and I did my best to do that. Pauleen especially was more motivated by rewards because the threat of punishment meant nothing to her. I hear now there are studies in the prisons on that philosophy for psychopathic antisocial criminals. I would not say that my son is well-adjusted. He has been living with his psychopath father since he was eleven. His father does rotten things to him and my son is a doormat, just like how I became from being raised by my psychopath father. I am not going into detail about why he lives there, but at the time he started living there, we only saw the mask of Harlan’s good-guy act. A list of don’ts is only one thing – don’t let distancing set in. I would say primarily to parents of psychopaths: Understand that your child is stuck at age 5 emotionally. This means that when the psychopathic child acts selfishly or impulsively, try to remember that it’s their permanent neurological condition.

    JR: No matter how much in the dark you were, there was another person in your daughter’s life who should have understood her better: her father, a psychopath. Were there any signs that he recognised what Pauleen was and had a better idea of what he was doing with her?

    TT: Both Pauleen’s father and step-father are psychopaths. (They are completely different from each other.) Pauleen’s father refused to have anything to do with her until she was 16. That was after he had a stroke. Maybe it changed something. Harlan is Pauleen’s stepfather, and he oddly made her the scapegoat and butt of his jokes. At the time, I thought he was unkind because she was his stepchild. I subconsciously made excuses for him because I was raised in the same type of environment. I did not realize what a dysfunctional family I had until it was too late. Harlan told me, after our separation, that he could not recognize others like him. That was probably a lie.

    JR: We’ve clashed on this 5 year-old thing before (though I think last time you said 2 year-old, so it looks like I’m winning, forcing you to concede years of development!). But the essence of what you’re saying about the permanence of the state is excellent advice. Furthermore they should, as parents, accept and love their child regardless. Everyone else gets a choice. If your friend, colleague, brother, girlfriend etc is a psychopath and you want out, you know where the door is. If your child is a psychopath, tough. You stick with them for as long as they need you. Anyway, since I’ve gone all Fox News and am moralising at the interviewee (I’m thumping the desk as I type), let’s move on…

    TT: Your lack of empathy is quite apparent. What you did is very FOX, in that all of their employees are psychopaths, right? Telling me about how people should stick by their children no matter what is bizarre since you have no frame of reference. It would be considered abusive – it is called shaming. Psychopaths are famous for it. On top of that, you can’t possibly know anything about sticking with someone. You drop people all the time. I’m sure parents give their kids over to foster care all the time because they can’t deal with them. Your lecture on human behavior holds no water. I can’t be shamed anymore. If someone doesn’t like how I do things, that’s their problem, not mine.

    JR: You keep saying “until it was too late” as though someone went on a murder spree because you didn’t act quick enough. You’re not in that shitty relationship anymore, you’ve woken up to reality and nobody’s dead (I assume), so it’s more of a victory for you than some terrible defeat.

    TT: I said it’s too late for 2 reasons: If I had known about the psychopathy at the time that I was dealing with it, I would have tried different things. My daughter had a few neurofeedback sessions to treat her ADHD and that worked very well for improving her self-control. I would have had her continue the sessions longer, and made it a priority in spite of the hardships I was having at the time. My daughter and I might still have a relationship today. Secondly, if I had known about the psychopathy at the time, I would not have felt so bewildered and off-balance by my husband’s peculiar words and actions, and I would not have gotten divorced. I would have dealt with it differently and the kids would not have had to suffer the consequences. Those are things that can’t be undone.

    JR: “I believe I did a good job of making her mostly prosocial.” Tell me about that. What makes her prosocial? And how do you reconcile this confidence in your success with the complete lack of trust in her to not steal your belongings? 

    Pauleen is mostly prosocial. That is a contradiction of sorts because really no psychopath is truly prosocial. You all make your own rules and only pretend to be a part of society. I guess Pauleen plays her part, she works, she goes to college, and she is not a jailbird. But, she has lots of secret antisocial parts, too.

    JR: Don’t we all.

    Thank you, Tina, for taking the time to talk to me. I’m sure the readers will agree you’ve given a fascinating insight into the mind of a psychopath’s mother.

     
    • GeneticPsychosMom (Tina) 10:01 on March 18, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      I just want to clarify that when I said “The way I treated her was terrible”, that did not mean abuse. I would do things like turn up the car radio when she was talking incessantly, or I would shut myself in my room for hours.

      Like

    • Emily Court 11:43 on March 18, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      I understand what it is like to raise a child with EBD or special needs, and how difficult it is for parents.
      My child had PTSD and severe emotional/behavioral struggles related to trauma, abuse, homelessness and developing an abusive attachment with father at a young age. My child struggled from a young age and father refused, and prevented, me from seeking help or support. We were totally isolated, and forced to keep my child’s behavior a secret… when what was really needed is open-ness, therapy and family support.
      It wasn’t until I fled the abuse that I could seek help.. and by then my child was near a breaking point. My child would bang his head on the wall and tell me he did that because “the pain makes the bad memories go away”. My child was also very violent, would swear at me (as his father did) and would lie, steal and even hurt others or pets. The abusive ex continued to attempt to prevent treatment and therapy by using the family courts… saying my child didn’t need treatment, he only needed to spend time with father.. and falsely accusing me of mental illness to block my attempts to get help. My child disclosed abuse in therapy as well, included being choked and witnessing his sister being inappropriately touched (therapist called CPS).
      What I learned – is that families need support and intensive help for the WHOLE family not just the affected child. I had to devote my time to seeking help for my child, but also had to deal with how the abuse affected me, and our family as a whole. Financial support is also important. My child needed intensive services that included in-home care, and as a parent I had to give so much to work with him.. that it was impossible for me to work. Caring for my child was a full-time job. I had to apply for public assistance and food stamps, and lived in the lowest level of poverty.. but that was what was needed.
      Another thing I learned is that when your child is acting out or having a tantrum or otherwise struggling.. you as a parent also need help or support. Especially if you are a single parent or have a history of abuse. There has to be an outlet for the parent to get non-judgmental, caring support. Or to take time to just take care of themselves. Or to get further educated on your child’s condition, and learning skills and techniques to work with the child. Or to talk and connect with other parents. Respite care or mentorship or support groups for children is really important. NAMI even offers a support group for siblings, that includes giving kids a few hours to play, enjoy a meal, and receive some extra TLC.
      And the last thing I want to say… the family court, CPS, social workers, therapists, educators etc need to be better educated and trained. To include learning from parents and adult children. The system is set up to assign blame, which is not healing and makes things worse. And if the system can not properly identify abuse, children’s lives are put at risk. Intervention is key and professionals can be instrumental in helping families… and assisting in the recovery and treatment of needy children. This may improve outcomes.
      In my situation, the family court awarded SOLE custody to the identified abuser. My child has never fully recovered… his behavior has improved but emotionally, mentally and socially he continues to struggle… but I believe that is because I did seek help, and fought with every breath in my body to address the issues… in my home my child and my family sought help. And for a time we were able to rebuild our lives, I hope he takes that with him.. as he now struggles to survive in an abusive, dysfunctional environment.
      Thank you for sharing! xx

      Liked by 1 person

    • nowve666 13:44 on March 18, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Hey, guys! Nice to see you on the blogosphere again. Tina wrote, “When Marc was just newborn, Pauleen told her grandmother that I don’t love her anymore. Pauleen and I could never develop a closeness because what she did and said made me want to hide from her. Of course she noticed that I was more easy going with Marc as time went by.” My mother had a similar issue with me and my sister but I had no idea until I got access to an interview my mother had with a social worker in which she confided these things to her. I must say, it was a shock. My mom was very good at hiding her true feelings.
      Tina: “I would not say that my son is well-adjusted. He has been living with his psychopath father since he was eleven. His father does rotten things to him and my son is a doormat, just like how I became from being raised by my psychopath father. “His father has custody?” I don’t know the circumstances but, all things being equal, I think the mother should be the one with custody. Call me old-fashioned.
      James wrote, “We’ve clashed on this 5 year-old thing before (though I think last time you said 2 year-old, so it looks like I’m winning, forcing you to concede years of development!).” Oh, I remember that! “The girl I [was looking after at the time of the interview] will be 5 in September and I have considerably more emotional maturity than her [she will be 6 now].” You’ve been looking after a toddler, James? Of course, we are more mature than a five-year-old.
      Tina: “shaming. Psychopaths are famous for it.” So are NTs. I think NTs do it more than we do. “you can’t possibly know anything about sticking with someone.” But we know about sticking it to someone. Will that do? 😉
      Tina: “Pauleen is mostly prosocial. That is a contradiction of sorts because really no psychopath is truly prosocial.” I quite agree! I really don’t like that term.

      My father once said to me, “You didn’t turn out the way I wanted but you turned out the way you wanted and that’s what matters.” I think that was very cool of him.

      Thanks for this interesting discussion.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Amaterasu Solar 19:20 on March 18, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Excellent interview! Thank You both! I was fascinated.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Anon 16:06 on March 24, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Excellent interview.

      I was fascinated by the replies, and even more fascinated by how James was framing you as a ‘bad’ parent.

      ‘Do you think she may have ever felt less loved than her brother?’

      ‘It does take courage to admit screwing up as a parent.’

      ‘Furthermore they should, as parents, accept and love their child regardless.’ (Not true – I’ve read several accounts by parents of Ps about how they tried to feel love but it wasn’t there – no connection. Anyhow, James is just repeating words without understanding the emotions if he’s a P)

      ‘No matter how much in the dark you were, there was another person in your daughter’s life who should have understood her better: her father, a psychopath.’ (Yes, he would have understood exactly how to screw her up)

      Finally, he had fun with the tags, making sure that the very first one (low on the alphabet) was a completely new one, ‘bad parenting’ – oh, and ‘child abuse’ was the third one. Bit of dupers delight going on there I’m sure.

      Liked by 1 person

      • James 18:30 on March 24, 2017 Permalink | Reply

        Hi, Anon. Thanks for reading. Your theories are interesting, but you’re clutching at straws. If I had as devious a mind as that, well then I guess I’d be you, since you came up with all that yourself.

        I don’t expect you to believe me, nor do I care since you’re just stirring the pot and possibly don’t even believe what you’ve written yourself, but Tina knows there’s been about a 18 month gap between this interview being conducted and published. If I were playing the sick little game that you suggest, it wouldn’t have dragged on that long.

        Incidentally, since you’re obsessed about the tags – which by the way are simply there to encourage more search engine hits – you’ll notice I also used “evil kids” and “psycho kids”. Both, along with “child abuse” and “bad parent” are the kind of sensationalist rot more people are going to Google than “Interview with the mother of a psychopath.” But no. You’re right. It’s all just a big nasty joke from the big nasty “P”.

        Liked by 1 person

      • GeneticPsychosMom (Tina) 05:46 on March 27, 2017 Permalink | Reply

        I agree with your assessments. Psychopaths do psychopathic things. As I have observed my family, it seems to me that they don’t always intend to be awful to others, but they just are, incidentally/accidentally, in order to accomplish their task with blinders on. And, they are not sorry. I have ceased to be shocked or disappointed in “being victimized”, and say to myself, “Well, this is just something a psychopath would do.” I used to agonize over it years ago, before I started learning about psychopathy.

        Like

        • James 18:43 on March 27, 2017 Permalink | Reply

          That’s it, side with the troll. Might have known you wouldn’t back me up. No sense of loyalty at all, and yet I’m the “psychopath”…

          Like

          • GeneticPsychosMom (Tina) 19:11 on March 27, 2017 Permalink | Reply

            Weird

            Like

            • James 19:19 on March 27, 2017 Permalink | Reply

              What’s weird? That I am disappointed you seem to value the words of an anonymous stranger over those of someone you’ve known for over 2 years? The Anon shared its theory, I rebuked with evidence, but apparently the crazy theory is to be believed over the actual truth.

              Like

              • GeneticPsychosMom (Tina) 19:21 on March 27, 2017 Permalink | Reply

                Um, ok. Just giving my view and experience and you take it as a personal threat, and taking sides.

                Like

                • James 19:27 on March 27, 2017 Permalink | Reply

                  What I am saying is I would have thought that by now if I laid out my reason for doing something, you would accept is as true. No more or less.

                  Like

                  • GeneticPsychosMom (Tina) 03:01 on March 28, 2017 Permalink | Reply

                    I do accept it as true. Take a closer look.

                    Like

                    • James 11:54 on March 28, 2017 Permalink | Reply

                      I would like to know where to look. If you accept Anon’s assessments as true, then implicitly my reply is false in your view, as my reply contradicts Anon’s statement. Either one is true, or neither are, but they can’t both be. Which is it?

                      Like

                      • GeneticPsychosMom (Tina) 11:58 on March 28, 2017 Permalink

                        What my post says is that I agree with her assessments of your actions, but it was not intentional. Just like now, you are unintentionally aggravating me…I’m tired.

                        Like

                      • James 12:17 on March 28, 2017 Permalink

                        Well?

                        Like

                      • James 13:17 on March 28, 2017 Permalink

                        Well that’s slightly better, but still patronising. I am aware of how and why I do things, thank you. And your aggravation is certainly intentional (that’s what happens when you aggravate me, I hit back), just as you seem hell bent on winding me up every few weeks or so. You should just apologise for once in your life, and admit you were wrong.

                        Like

                      • GeneticPsychosMom (Tina) 14:53 on March 28, 2017 Permalink

                        I knew it was intended , I was just checking by playing dumb. I will give you the psychopathic apology. I am so sorry that you were aggravated by whatever the hell I don’t even know nor care and I hope to never do the whatever whenever if I can help it.

                        Liked by 1 person

                      • James 16:22 on March 28, 2017 Permalink

                        You’re funny when you’re angry.

                        Like

                      • James 16:24 on March 28, 2017 Permalink

                        However, that was still fucking pathetic, and another low blow that wasn’t called for. You do know what aggravated me, and you’re not a psychopath. Even I give a proper apology when I understand why something was wrong. Apology not accepted.

                        Like

                      • James 16:28 on March 28, 2017 Permalink

                        Do you admit you got it wrong?

                        Like

              • GeneticPsychosMom (Tina) 03:03 on March 28, 2017 Permalink | Reply

                You are disappointed? I can’t do am u thing about that.

                Like

          • GeneticPsychosMom (Tina) 19:14 on March 27, 2017 Permalink | Reply

            It’s all about taking sides and “winning”.

            Like

          • GeneticPsychosMom (Tina) 03:05 on March 28, 2017 Permalink | Reply

            A sense of loyalty? Here’s the shaming, to be expected. Weird, once again.

            Like

            • James 12:01 on March 28, 2017 Permalink | Reply

              No, I expect loyalty to those who I have shown loyalty to. That’s very fair, I think. If you’re incapable of that, then just say so.

              Like

              • GeneticPsychosMom (Tina) 19:34 on March 28, 2017 Permalink | Reply

                This loyalty thing you want is stupid. I don’t understand loyalty, and I will never care about it. So take that to somebody else.

                Like

                • James 20:31 on March 28, 2017 Permalink | Reply

                  Which explains why your social life seems to be rather empty. No but seriously, if that’s true, you definitely have a personality disorder. Or maybe, as I’ve often suspected, you’re more of a psychopath than you care to admit not just “genetically”, but actually…

                  I am taking it to you, not someone else, and I need you to understand. Put simply, I have been friendly to / stuck up for you in the past, so I expect you to do the same, and not ‘side with’ (yes, I admit it!) the first person to come along and make up a story about me. Do you understand that or not?

                  Honestly, this is not some weird psychopathic demand, pretty much everybody expects a friend to take their side over that of a stranger. It’s not unnatural, and it’s not stupid. If you can’t wrap your head around that, you lose all of your friends pretty quickly (trust me, I’ve done it a fair few times. Now I use disloyalty as a quick way to get rid of someone I’m fed up with) Maybe you don’t care about that either.

                  As for not understanding loyalty, well how did it feel when one of the long-term husbands / whatever the men who gave you children were cheated on you? That was disloyalty to you, a betrayal in other words. How about loyalty to your children? Surely you would support them over pretty much anyone else, barring any games your daughter might be up to.

                  Now what we’re talking about here (your siding with Anon) is more minor than that, but it’s still hurtful.

                  So now have the information, what are you going to do? An apology seems pretty unlikely at this point, but other than that, where will you go? Minimising my feelings? Giving me some pseudo-psychological “that’s what psychopaths do” lecture? Telling me “this shows you don’t understand human emotion, bla bla.” Some non-sequitur like “eww”? Or another “I don’t care, leave me alone” as above? Go on, surprise me. Because at this point, you’re becoming predictable.

                  Like

                  • GeneticPsychosMom (Tina) 20:51 on March 28, 2017 Permalink | Reply

                    Too bad for me, then.

                    Like

                    • James 20:52 on March 28, 2017 Permalink | Reply

                      A non-sequitur then. Write a proper answer.

                      Like

                      • GeneticPsychosMom (Tina) 13:01 on March 29, 2017 Permalink

                        No shits given due to psyche problems developed from exposure to psychopaths. Understand yet?

                        Like

                      • James 19:46 on March 29, 2017 Permalink

                        I understand what you want me to believe of you, yes. As usual, blaming all your ills on psychopaths, but if an impartial observer were watching us now, who had to decide which one of us was behaving more psycho, I don’t think it would be me!

                        What are you so wary of, that you won’t engage with my previous long comment? You’re normally so keen to argue til the cows come home; that’s why psychopaths like you. If you’re numb and no shits are given, then what’s the worst that could happen? Just play along, humour me my little request to join the conversation.

                        Just as a reminder, because I’m thoughtful like that: “As for not understanding loyalty, well how did it feel when one of the long-term husbands / whatever the men who gave you children were cheated on you? That was disloyalty to you, a betrayal in other words. How about loyalty to your children? Surely you would support them over pretty much anyone else, barring any games your daughter might be up to.”

                        It’s just an extension to the interview really.

                        Like

                      • GeneticPsychosMom (Tina) 19:51 on March 29, 2017 Permalink

                        Loyalty means nothing to a psychopath. Stop pushing this loyalty thing because you look hypocritical and I no longer believe in it because of people like you.

                        Like

                      • James 10:42 on March 30, 2017 Permalink

                        Except I’m not hypocritical, as I conform to my own standards of loyalty and treat people how I expect to be treated. I can’t help how people have treated you in the past, nor am I responsible for their behaviour. You don’t know me, so you don’t know what kind of person I am, and you can’t say what means something to me or not. Speak for yourself.

                        If you point me to one occasion where I have betrayed you to a stranger, and taken the side of someone aggravating you, I will hold my hands up and admit to being a hypocrite. But I strongly believe that there has been no such occasion, and what’s more that over the years I have tried my hardest to be fair and friendly towards you, given you advice, gratefully received your advice, made jokes with you, attempted to understand you, though I admit we have had many disagreements and arguments. Like I said, if you can point out a single betrayal of you by me, I promise to drop this matter immediately. But if you can’t, I equally promise to keep pushing this, because you have done me an injustice and I will not accept anything short of an apology.

                        Like

                      • GeneticPsychosMom (Tina) 11:14 on March 30, 2017 Permalink

                        What is ridiculous is that speaking my own mind is considered a betrayal. You’re right, I don’t know you, leave off with the loyalty crap whoever you are.

                        Like

            • James 16:29 on March 28, 2017 Permalink | Reply

              This remains unaddressed. Can I expect better loyalty in the future?

              Like

    • GeneticPsychosMom (Tina) 19:54 on March 29, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      And for the record, no shits given about James’ childish rantings.

      Like

      • James 10:28 on March 30, 2017 Permalink | Reply

        I may be childish and petty, but I’m hardly ranting. You come across as being stressed out.

        Like

  • GeneticPsychosMom (Tina) 14:14 on September 22, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , Global Financial Crisis, , , , , , , psychopaths, , , ,   

    Corporate Psychopaths, The Global Financial Crisis 

    Global CrisisIntroduction

    When large financial corporations are destroyed by the actions of their senior directors, employees lose their jobs and sometimes their livelihoods, shareholders lose their investments and sometimes their life savings and societies lose key parts of their economic infrastructure. Capitalism also loses some of its credibility.

    These corporate collapses have gathered pace in recent years, especially in the western world, and have culminated in the Global Financial Crisis that we are now in. In watching these events unfold it often appears that the senior directors involved walk away with a clean conscience and huge amounts of money. Further, they seem to be unaffected by the corporate collapses they have created. They present themselves as glibly unbothered by the chaos around them, unconcerned about those who have lost their jobs, savings, and investments, and as lacking any regrets about what they have done. They cheerfully lie about their involvement in events are very persuasive in blaming others for what has happened and have no doubts about their own continued worth and value. They are happy to walk away from the economic disaster that they have managed to bring about, with huge payoffs and with new roles advising governments how to prevent such economic disasters.

    Many of these people display several of the characteristics of psychopaths and some of them are undoubtedly true psychopaths. Psychopaths are the 1% of people who have no conscience or empathy and who do not care for anyone other than themselves. Some psychopaths are violent and end up in jail, others forge careers in corporations. The latter group who forge successful corporate careers is called Corporate Psychopaths. Who psychopaths are and who Corporate Psychopaths are, is discussed further below.

    Psychopaths

    Psychopaths are people who, perhaps due to physical factors to do with abnormal brain connectivity and chemistry, especially in the areas of the amygdala and orbital/ventrolateral frontal cortex (Blair et al., 2005, 2006; Kiehl et al., 2001, 2004, 2006) lack a conscience, have few emotions and display an inability to have any feelings, sympathy or empathy for other people. The area of the brain known as the amygdala has been described as the seat of emotion and fear and is reported to be important in processing socially relevant information and it is therefore theorized that disruption of its functions could lead to cold and socially inappropriate behaviour (Wernke and Huss, 2008). This abnormal brain connectivity and chemistry of psychopaths makes them extraordinarily cold, much more calculating and ruthless towards others than most people are and therefore a menace to the companies they work for and to society (Brinkley et al., 2004; Viding, 2004).

    Corporate Psychopaths

    These people have also been called Executive Psychopaths, Industrial Psychopaths, Organisational Psychopaths, and Organisational Sociopaths by other researchers in this emerging area of research (Pech and Slade, 2007). They ruthlessly manipulate others, without conscience, to further their own aims and objectives (Babiak and Hare, 2006).

    Although they may look smooth, charming, sophisticated, and successful, Corporate Psychopaths should theoretically be almost wholly destructive to the organizations that they work for. The probable mal-effects of the presence of psychopaths in the workplace have been hypothesized about in recent times by a number of leading experts and commentators on psychopathy (Babiak, 1995; Babiak and Hare, 2006; Boddy, 2005, 2006; Clarke, 2005; Hare, 1994, 1999).

    Researchers report that such malevolent leaders are callously disregarding of the needs and wishes of others, prepared to lie, bully and cheat and to disregard or cause harm to the welfare of others (Perkel, 2005). Corporate Psychopaths are also poorly organized managers who adversely affect productivity and have a negative impact on many different areas of organizational effectiveness (Boddy, 2010b).

    The theory

    Psychologists have argued that Corporate Psychopaths within organizations may be singled out for rapid promotion because of their polish, charm, and cool decisiveness. Expert commentators on the rise of Corporate Psychopaths within modern corporations have also hypothesized that they are more likely to be found at the top of current organisations than at the bottom. Further, that if this is the case, then this phenomenon will have dire consequences for the organisations concerned and for the societies in which those organisations are based. Since this prediction of dire consequences was made the Global Financial Crisis has come about.

    Corporate Social Responsibility

    Corporate Social Responsibility

    The knowledge that Corporate Psychopaths are to be found at the top of organisations and seem to favour working with other people’s money in large financial organisations has in turn, led to the development of the Corporate Psychopaths Theory of the Global Financial Crisis. The Corporate Psychopaths Theory of the Global Financial Crisis is that Corporate Psychopaths, rising to key senior positions within modern financial corporations, where they are able to influence the moral climate of the whole organisation and yield considerable power, have largely caused the crisis. In these
    senior corporate positions, the Corporate Psychopath’s single-minded pursuit of their own self-enrichment and self-aggrandizement to the exclusion of all other considerations has led to an abandonment of the old-fashioned concept of noblesse oblige, equality, fairness, or of any real notion of
    corporate social responsibility.

    The Corporate Psychopaths Theory of the Global Financial Crisis is that changes in the way people are employed have facilitated the rise of Corporate Psychopaths to senior positions and their personal greed in those positions has created the crisis. Prior to the last third of the twentieth century large corporations were relatively stable, slow to change and the idea of a job for life was evident, with employees gradually rising through the corporate ranks until a position was reached beyond which they were not qualified by education, intellect or ability to go. In such a stable, slowly changing environment employees would get to know each other very well and Corporate Psychopaths would be noticeable and identifiable as undesirable managers because of their selfish egotistical personalities and other ethical defects.

    Changing companies’ mid-career was seen as being questionable and inadvisable and their rise would therefore be blocked both within their original employer and among external employers who would question their reasons for wanting to change jobs.

    However, once corporate takeovers and mergers started to become commonplace and the resultant corporate changes started to accelerate, exacerbated by both globalisation and a rapidly changing technological environment, then corporate stability began to disintegrate. Jobs for life disappeared and not surprisingly employees’ commitment to their employers also lessened accordingly. Job switching first became acceptable and then even became common and employees increasingly found themselves working for unfamiliar organisations and with other people that they did not really know very well. Rapid movements in key personnel between corporations compared to the relatively slower movements in organisational productivity and success made it increasingly difficult to identify corporate success with any particular manager. Failures were not noticed until too late and the offending managers had already moved on to better positions elsewhere. Successes could equally be claimed by those who had nothing to do with them. Success could thus be claimed by those with the loudest voice, the most influence and the best political skills. Corporate Psychopaths have these skills in abundance and use them with ruthless and calculated efficiency.

    In this way, the whole corporate and employment environment changed from one that would hold the Corporate Psychopath in check to one where they could flourish and advance relatively unopposed.

    As evidence of this, senior level remuneration and reward started to increase more and more rapidly and beyond all proportion to shop floor incomes and a culture of greed unfettered by conscience developed. Corporate Psychopaths are ideally situated to prey on such an environment and corporate fraud, financial misrepresentation, greed and misbehaviour went through the roof, bringing down huge companies and culminating in the Global Financial Crisis that we are now in.

    Perhaps more than ever before, the world needs corporate leaders with a conscience. It does not need Corporate Psychopaths. Measures exist to identify Corporate Psychopaths. Perhaps it is time to use them.

    Excerpts from “The Corporate Psychopaths Theory of the Global Financial Crisis“, by Clive R. Boddy, 2011

    Photos courtesy John LeGear, Post Memes

    .

    Psychopath Test Politicians

    .

     
c
Compose new post
j
Next post/Next comment
k
Previous post/Previous comment
r
Reply
e
Edit
o
Show/Hide comments
t
Go to top
l
Go to login
h
Show/Hide help
shift + esc
Cancel
%d bloggers like this: