This article is dedicated to a strong woman who has overcome and one who I am fortunate to be able to call a friend.
A song title yes; but a very apt description of a sociopath (now referred in psychiatric terms as a person afflicted with an “antisocial personality disorder”).This type of individual carries all the charm and mystery of a perceived “gypsy-like” way of living. They move freely among us; charming all in their path and disarming them to the point of distraction. A gypsy, no doubt, has less of a malicious streak however I will continue with my analogy for the sake of offering some clarity. This distraction offers a cover for their less than savoury modis operandi (method of operation). A sociopath is anything but an “antisocial” person as we understand it; the term used more to describe their inability to blend with the established social order. They will engage in behaviour that violates accepted mores or local laws. To be brief, the accepted practices or local laws do not apply to them, or so they believe. Often they will engage in unlawful practices and in many cases criminally chargeable offenses. The sociopath also enjoys the practice of moving from person to person much like the perceived notion of the nomadic gypsies.
A person with antisocial personality disorder will be sexually promiscuous. A “tramp” in the sexual sense; they will latch onto their more-than compliant victims. Before you judge too harshly; know this. The victim will not even know what hits them as the sociopath knows exactly what buttons to push, what lies to offer, what that person wants to hear. Often highly intelligent and very perceptive to the emotional needs of their victims; these are a very dangerous predator indeed. Imagine being swept off your feet in a whirlwind romance “thinking that you’ve finally met the person of your hopes and dreams”. When you can look at it like this; then you are finally in the shoes of the willing, innocent victim. When the bad things start to happen….and they do….you are rewarded by small praises or gifts and then the cycle begins again. This is an addictive cycle and extremely difficult to extract yourself from. It will always be dangerous to your psyche and it is often dangerous physically. The “tramp” in the sociopath knows no boundaries and is interested only in self-gratification for the purpose of boosting a poor self-esteem and self-image. As such, they are commonly hopping from unsuccessful relationship to another unsuccessful relationship. Notorious for adultery and a host of other troublesome sexual dysfunctions within a society; they will leave a trail of broken, battered and traumatized lovers.
In terms of the unlawful practices and criminally chargeable offenses; the sociopath now takes on the role of “thief”. From the garden variety of small, petty thefts or stealing from their spouses and significant others to the embezzlement and fraud issues that often follow these people around like a shadow. Make no mistake, they thrive on the thrill and are driven by that same thrill. They have no difficulty in beating, lying or stealing to achieve their goals. As they suffer from an over-inflated sense of self-importance; the sociopath will do whatever is needed in order for them to achieve that “prize”. Their determination and desire to win at all costs makes them a person to steer well clear of. They are a thief in an emotional sense. Taking from their victims, their sense of safety and self-worth, and in many cases, robbing them of their financial security.
All in all, a person with APD is highly volatile, but remarkable charming and at ease with people. Persons generally respond very well to this type of individual. Their illusion is a tightly, wrapped coil waiting to pounce on their next victim but only after they have them well in their clutches. Ironically, many people would compare a sociopath to the likes of Ted Bundy. NOT TRUE. A sociopath seldom murders their victims; they prefer to leave them penniless and heartbroken. The sociopath will justify what they have done to such a point that it leaves no room for doubt. They will get everything that they can get; and then they will move on to the next person. There will always be that next victim afterall….