I’ve written about emotional unavailability and narcissism, but there’s a certain species out there that I haven’t yet discussed. In many ways, this species is embedded in and yet completely independent of the other two. These are people that you may think you know very well. You may be dating one, friends with one, working with, or even related to one. They don’t look any different or stand out in any kind of obtrusive way.
They definitely stand out though, in the most magnetic and emotionally vampiric way. A way that often leaves the hypnotized “audience” at their emotional, a*s kissing knees. These people call their own shots, always get what they want, and never seem to experience any of the consequences that life is all too willing to hand our way. The blueprint in which this species operates is never noticed or revealed – until they inevitably unfold. That unfolding point, however, is nearly impossible to act upon or accept.
At that point, our value, identity, and boundaries have already been bartered down to the point of no return. We have way too much to lose because we’ve given them everything. Without them, our “investment” is gone.
Investing in someone of this species, on any level, is an investment in the most f*cked up emotional Ponzi scheme there is.
Who are these people?
What is a Sociopath?
Sociopaths are people who, through their passive agenda of manipulation, deceit, deflection, and emotional vampirism, seek to destroy the very foundation of the people that they claim to cherish because, well, they can. Although there are many different sociopath symptoms and varying definitions, the core attribute of sociopathy is having no conscience.
Having no conscience whatsoever is impossible for you and I to fully wrap our heads around because we have a conscience. We don’t know any other way. The reason why we invest as long as we do with sociopaths is because it’s hard to imagine (and nearly impossible to accept), how someone could be void of a moral compass that we assume, is the common denominator of humanity. I used to think that no matter what, everyone had a conscience deep down. Life has taught me that as far as sociopaths and sociopath symptoms go, this is not true.
If you don’t have a conscience, you’re not only incapable of being aware of your actions, but you are incapable of responsibility, empathy, accountability, and… LOVE.
And without any of these make-or-break attributes, which are essential for healthy and mutual relationships, the only option a sociopath has left is that of game-playing, manipulation, and gaslighting. “Sociopaths can charm the birds out of the trees and tell you black is white, and have you believing it.” (Buttafuoco, 2009).
So, what are the tell-tale sociopath symptoms?
Are sociopaths also emotionally unavailable, narcissistic, or both?
The question you may be asking is “Am I dating a sociopath?” and if so, “what do I do?”
First, I want to address questions that I know I definitely had in regard to the connection between emotional unavailability, narcissism, and sociopathy:
In my non-professional opinion…
Emotionally unavailable people are not ALL narcissistic, but narcissism cannot exist without emotional unavailability. And narcissists are not ALL sociopaths, but sociopathy cannot exist without narcissism.
You could Google “sociopath symptoms,” and millions of identifying characteristics would pop up. I wanted to provide you guys with what I’ve personally experienced as far as sociopath symptoms go.
What are the 5 Sociopath Symptoms?
Signs You are Dating a Sociopath
They deserve an Academy Award for the emotional orgasms that they fake.
As far as sociopath symptoms in males and females go, this is by far one of the hardest to accept because they are incredibly convincing. And if our self-esteem is low enough, we’ll feel GUILTY for even reasonably QUESTIONING their authenticity.
Sociopaths are masters at faking intense moral outrage, portraying a false facade of being caring and empathetic, and pity mongering. This is done to paint a picture; to create a persona that is so solid and convincing, it will make anyone who dares to question them feel, look and sound completely baseless.
Sociopaths are masters at image management.
Another huge one is fearlessness. NOTHING scares a sociopath except very primal fears like dying, becoming terminally ill, etc. They hide fear at all costs. If they get “found out,” it jeopardizes their ability to con and manipulate further (in which case they disconnect, get “bored,” discard you and move on to another victim/audience. They then deflect the knowingness that you have of them by crazy labeling you to any willing audience. Many will try to take you down and ruin your reputation).
Sociopaths have absolutely no fear of doing and saying the most asinine, outrageous things. And then when the aftermath sets in, they act completely oblivious; like nothing ever happened!
Sociopath symptoms can all be marked by an outrageous factor. They are grandiose in their emotional perpetration and always, unapologetic. They lie about their experiences and are “shock factor” junkies.
Some examples of this include: pathologically lying, cheating, future faking, stealing, and making inflated and unrealistic promises.
Sociopaths thrive in running smear campaigns and turning “everyone” against someone. Yes, they know the difference between right and wrong, but they don’t feel that deep feeling of empathy, guilt, remorse, shame, or a need to apologize – ever. Sociopaths are only capable of selfish regret, which they attempt to package as genuine remorse.
Sociopaths truly believe that whatever they say is FACT.
It will never occur to a sociopath that you (and everyone else) have your own needs, wants, FEELINGS, thoughts, and rights. There’s no point in ever trying to express it either. Sociopaths engage in an “eat-chew-spit” policy when it comes to lovers and friends. Because they can’t ever move on in a conventional way, they have to dispose of and spit people out (only after they chew them up).
They’ll pedestal you like no one ever has and then, devalue you in the coldest ways. The highs are very high and the lows are extremely low.
Sociopaths will never apologize because they truly believe that they are never wrong. If they do apologize, it’s usually to make you feel guilty and to re-secure your trust.
They don’t feel guilty about anything and if you present them with evidence that they are indeed wrong, they’ll never admit that you’re right. Instead, they’ll get hostile. They’ll retaliate by starting a convincing campaign against you. This is how they get people to do what they want – through emotional blackmail.
Because they lack any kind of conscience, they will use your OWN conscience against you.
How? by reminding you of “what’s morally right” and repeating back basic morals to you when you innocently complain about something trivial. They love telling you what you “should” be doing with your life, money, time, etc.
And because they have a need for constant stimulation, when they get bored, they will all of a sudden bombard you with some grandiose “good” news/information/plan so that when you have any kind of question or concern about it all, they can accuse you of “not being on board,” not caring and failing to listen/follow along.
What to Do If You’re Dating a Sociopath
Strategize an exit plan. Speak calmly and kindly with your ACTIONS and realize that you never were with the person that they portray themselves to be. That person does not exist.
Why do sociopaths change all of a sudden and go so quickly from hot to cold? This is not “intensity,” “passion” or “change.” This is them REVEALING their scheme.
If anyone in your life exudes these sociopath symptoms, the best thing you can do is understand that there will never be any reasoning or “winning” with these people. Do not try to explain and do not antagonize. Getaway.
It’s time to create your own closure. Allow your awareness to be louder than their delusion.
+ If you need further and more personalized help with your relationship, please look into working with me here.
Natasha – this so your best post EVER. Thank you for changing/saving my life. ????
Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU Natasha. You are an angel on earth and I don’t care what you say – you are healing and saving lives. I am dealing with a sociopathic person right now and this post was exactly what I needed to hear. Thank you and God bless you Natasha.
This was your BEST. POST. EVER! I just bought the romper ?? You are so wonderful Natasha. My entire sorority swears by your blog. It’s our bible ????
I don’t think you could have hit that nail any more dead centre on the head. Thank you Natasha – thank you, thank you!!
So happy it helped! 🙂 Thx Shelagh!! x
How? How do you do it? Your calm in the storm of most people’s lives is life affirming and invaluable. I wish you were running for president. xoxo
You’ve literally saved my life with this blog! Thank you for sharing your life and gifts with the rest of the world! Xoxo
You are a gem. Thanks Shaunta! 🙂 x
I needed this the most. I know exactly who this is about. Thank you so much, I am so moved and touched to be able to refer back to this over and over. I have so much love for you. Xoxo
Love you sister! Happy it helped 🙂 xx
You speak to women’s hearts. You are able to articulate the emotions that I feel and understand the struggle within. I read so many of your articles (sadly, a bit too late: I did not contact for 2 months but texted for his birthday….why?????? Since he hung up on me two months ago, he has never contacted….never ever… I live the eat-chew-spit…it is unbelievable).
It is so hard to accept that the person we thought we knew never existed and the life they claimed to want with us never existed either. I find solace in the fact that I am not alone.
Women, my heart is connected to your hearts.
Natasha, congratulations for bringing together these shared experiences of love and pain.
Thank you from the bottom of my heart for the love, sisterhood and support. It means everything to me. You are far from alone Kristin. You are loved, supported, backed and believed in. Thank you for being a part of this tribe and for allowing me to feel less alone in my experiences. All my love to you soul sister. xoxo
I feel for you. I feel/fear I’m in love with the same type of man. It’s heartbreaking and confusing and maddening. But it’s not us, not our problem. It’s only ours to own if we keep it alive by reaching out. I have moments of weakness and do the same thing and usually feel worse after I send a text. It sucks BUT you are not alone.
Spot on Sister! Love you! ?
Thx sis! xo
So what do you do once you love a sociopath and you break up after three years and they get a new girl right off the bat, but they randomly call you and text you to tell you they care and no matter how much your mind tells you to get over it and that this isn’t ever going to work and they’re not the person you thought they were, you still can’t seem to get over them
I wish that I could help, but I have too much to say to type it all out and not enough hands to type or hours in the day. This is why I cannot give specific advice in the comments. I’ll try to write a post soon that further explains this.
Thanks for the love, for reading and for your understanding.
You’re not alone XOXO
Thank you, Natasha, I need to hear this very badly. I don’t want to believe it, but it is time. I have made so many excuses and clung to the hope that this ‘label’ did not apply to the man I have fallen so deeply in love with. I am forever the optimist, believing people can and will change if they truly want to change. I know he does, but I also know that he is not there and I have been caught in the resulting destruction…and it is one of the most, if not the most, painful thing I have been through.
But, I can’t help but believe he will figure out a way to navigate through his sociopathic tendencies, just as you have learned how to manage your narcissistic tendencies that you spoke of in your previous blog. I do believe this is possible if one is dedicated to doing the work. I, however, know I can not be the one to support him through this process. It is heartbreaking and nothing less. But, I appreciate your honesty. I guess I am just not ready to accept that people with these tendencies cannot find love, cannot find the person who can balance or counter these tendencies in a way that can allow them to receive and give love. Again, I do realize that I cannot be the one to do this with a person who I know is good and beautiful at his essence. I hope he does find this person, I truly do. And, I hope no one else has to go through what I did in the meantime.
All my love to you Brooke. You’re not alone XOXO
If you don’t mind I need someone to talk to more then anything right now about how a sociopath, I’ve been with, who has beaten me physically in the past and mentally for years, has left me with a knife feeling in my chest and I constantly have breakdowns where I hate myself and feel worthless because of the things he would say to me. I don’t have any friends because over the years he would isolate me and drive them away. I feel so alone, many guys want to date me and have wanted to for years, but I am still extremely attracted to my sociopath who has left me for someone else because I was and have been pointing out the dark tendencies and things he says and calling him on his Sh*t wich has always made him mad. If you have the time to read something I could send you in an email that explains all of the abuse..I would so greatly appreciate your time..I need help to learn to love and live my life and be strong and self confident like I was many years ago. Please and thank you.
Yes!!! This is exactly what i needed to read. Holy hell everything in your post describes my last relationship that finally blew up yesterday. I am strong, i will not give myself up to anyone so cruel again. Especially not him. 🙁
I’m happy it helped! Proud of you. XOXO