- Mental Health
Are You a Psychopath?
What is a Psychopath?
People would like to think psychopaths are easy to spot. Like Ted Bundy, John Wayne Gacy, and Jeffrey Dahmer, you’d like see their mug shot on the evening news and automatically think “Psychopath.” The truth is you are surrounded by them at work, at home, maybe even in your relationships.
A psychopath is described as a personality disorder where the person lacks a conscience. Approximately 1% of the population has a psychopathic personality disorder, which translates into 1 out of every 100 people you encounter is a psychopath. They are usually higher intelligence than normal, and wear a mask that hides the callous and self-centered human being that lives inside of them. Without empathy, they cannot feel for someone else or put themselves in another’s shoes. They can only feel their own pain.
Serial Killers are Psychopaths
Not all psychopaths are serial killers. Ted Bundy just happened to be a sadistic killer, and a psychopath. The fact that he had no conscience made it easy for him to act on his fantasies of killing women. Many psychopaths spend time in prison, but many of them are smart enough to know they’ll get caught. However, that doesn’t mean they won’t wreak havoc in the free world.
Not all pedophiles are psychopaths. Over 80% of them will never touch a child, because they know it is wrong. What makes a child predator is a pedophile who happens to be a psychopath. When a person doesn't have a conscience, they can justify any behavior that suits them.
Psychopaths work very hard at mimicking emotions from people they’ve observed. Caring and nice people get more attention from others. Usually very charming, at least at first, the psychopath eventually shows his true colors when he/she does not get their way. Explosive, even threatening, they display anger when the subject can no longer be manipulated and may retaliate with either violence or a revengeful act. The clever psychopath may empty your bank account and drive away with your furniture in a U-Haul, or make sure your boss finds something by accident at work that gets you fired.
Characteristics of Psychopaths
- Poor impulse control
- Superficial and aloof
- Devious and manipulative
- Early problems in school
- Need for excitement
- No remorse or guilt
- Does not take responsibility
- Proud of ability to lie
- Poor judgment
Spot the Psycho
No one can see a conscience on a CAT Scan, or view it under a microscope. To identify a psychopath, you have to be aware of their motives, and spot them before they destroy your life. Watch out for the intense state of the psychopath, the fixated stare, and the winning smile. They are “too nice.” Psychopaths don't feel real emotions, and require a lot of excitement to feel any kind of stimulation. A psychopath can take a polygraph, and they won't respond with an "alert," even if they are guilty of a crime. Ted Bundy passed all his lie detector tests with flying colors. They constantly need new thrills, and they don’t exhibit fear.
They’re not Human
They have physical differences as well. Researchers have discovered the low heart rate, low anxiety, and lack of nervousness in the psychopath. This means they don’t fear the law, their parents, or respect any societal norms. This comes in handy when they calmly talk their way out of a confrontation with police.
Are You a Psychopath? This question was actually used as a screening tool for psychoanalysis. If you can answer this question, you just might be a psychopath.
Patty goes to her mother’s funeral, and meets a wonderful man. By the end of the service, she’s madly in love with him, but she never learns his name. Two weeks later, she kills her sister. Why?
See Answer Below
Patty wanted to see the man again and murdered her sister in hopes he would come to her funeral.