How to recognize a psychopath at home or at work, and time to leave

There was a book "On the hook: how to break the cycle of unhealthy relationships" Norwegian authors - journalist and lawyer Dalsegg Aud Inger Vesse, specializing in topics of domestic violence and mobbing. We publish excerpts from the chapter about the people with whom dialogue at home or work is harmful to health, and how to protect themselves from their psychological pressure and exploitation.

"Eagle Eye: how to break the cycle of unhealthy relationships»

They are women and men, parents, siblings, lovers, spouses. They may be colleagues, bosses, businessmen and public figures. Power-hungry people manipulate others and control them, is everywhere.

Almost always around conflict situations, communication with them puts everything on its head, leading to confusion and despair. Many of us ever have to deal with "difficult" people: first, they are very popular and likable, but eventually begin to show their less pleasant qualities. That such a man could work, Elizabeth.

Elizabeth led the project for six months and was pleased with the results of their work. She received a lot of positive feedback from customers - company partners, which worked. So she was surprised when the director Anna-Lisa company caused her to him and expressed his dissatisfaction - according to the headmistress, Elizabeth may not work well and the results of its labor

«mediocre." Anna-Lisa employee criticized for "sluggish" pace of work, recalling that Elizabeth is now working on the business, rather than the budget as before. Elizabeth was so taken aback words boss, that did not know what to answer: indeed, it prepared a report for a couple of days after the deadline, but this delay was agreed upon and does not constitute any problem. To the surprise of Elizabeth, Anna-Lisa also condemned her working wardrobe, ordering to change short skirts on the clothing appropriate to the image of the company.

Can you believe that malicious people do not exist, but, unfortunately, it is not

Holding back tears, Elizabeth left the office boss and went through reception, which sat Sylvie. Sylvie was the fifth or sixth assistant in a series of quick successive Secretaries of Anna-Lisa. Sylvie fearfully looked at Elizabeth, but said nothing.

Throughout the evening, Elizabeth pondered the words of the headmistress, analyze their work. She did not sleep well at night, and found herself in the following days on the fact that she was afraid to go to the office. Her colleagues noticed a change has occurred in it and started asking questions. Elizabeth replied that it was not feeling well. She was ashamed to talk about the spacing, obtained from the authorities.

A week after a meeting of department, where Elizabeth was represented by the preliminary results of work on a meaningful project for the company, which she directed. Anna-Lisa led the meeting. Before the report, Elizabeth was very nervous. She felt the gaze of the headmistress. Problems arose when the presentation starts, does not make things easier.

Anna-Lisa sighed pointedly: "I had hoped that Elizabeth was telling the truth when called herself an advanced PC user." After the presentation a discussion started, and Anna-Lisa said that the task could be solved much more efficiently. One of the ideas voiced by Elizabeth, she even called "worthless." In fact, it was an idea suggested itself by Anna-Lisa, so Elizabeth was completely baffled. She swallowed her tears, feeling miserable, humiliated and helpless.

After the meeting, the employee went to Elizabeth, who was also present at the presentation. Trying to comfort Elizabeth, a colleague told me that their activities and result-oriented shefini merciless to one who is something it does not like.

That's why Anna-Lisa changes the secretaries as gloves, exploits them almost around the clock, and chastises everyone if something is not done in accordance with its instructions. Other employees are also tensions with Anna-Lisa, some laid off because of a conflict with her. Upon reflection, Elizabeth decided to talk to the boss honest.

She thought that her being treated unfairly and felt I had to say about it. When she finally made an audience, it has not met understanding. Anna-Lisa was furious when Elizabeth said bluntly that criticism from the boss sparked own idea of ​​Anna-Lisa. The director began to deny that offered "a stupidity", and spoke about the incompetence thriving in the industry today.

"Besides, I will not tolerate interview data without my permission. I - director and my responsibility to control what they say about my company, "- added Anna-Lisa. Two weeks before this scandal Elizabeth gave an interview to one of the country's major newspapers.

Reporter was interested in her opinion as an expert in the industry, and the issues raised in the interviews were related to her specialty, but do not touch her place of work. But the boss was difficult to come to terms with this. Elizabeth sought the help of a counselor - an experienced specialist in conflict resolution in the workplace. He felt that Anna-Lisa is jealous of Elizabeth and perceives it as a threat.

The consultant said that this type of managers tend to denigrate those who have their own opinion. He explained that the behavior of Anna-Lisa points out that in its nature, likely to have a psychotic component and this personality disorder can not be changed. He expressed concerns that the situation could worsen if Elizabeth will continue to work under the supervision of Anna-Lisa, and advised her to seek other options. Elizabeth followed his advice and changed the place of work.

"Psychopaths do not exist, it is nothing more than a figure of speech" - many claim. However, our long-term experience in working with victims tells a different story. Can you believe that malicious people do not exist, but, unfortunately, it is not. You can believe that everything can change, but it is not. Of course, psychopathy has varying degrees of severity, and how the diagnosis implies the presence of a particular set of human characteristics that satisfy a number of criteria.

However, there are many among us people with psychopathic traits, such as Anna-Lisa from the history described above. Each person is unique, so these traits are manifested in different ways and the effect of this manifestation on others differently. But in most cases, people with psychopathic traits, it is hard to live or work side by side. They do not have the basic human ability - to empathize with the feelings of others, empathy, which is embodied in our care for one another

. A checklist of psychopathic traits
"Psychopaths - are social predators who charm, used for their own purposes people and relentlessly make their way, leaving behind a trail of broken hearts, dashed hopes and empty wallets. Completely devoid of conscience and empathy, they take what they want, and do what they like, while respecting the social norms and rules without the slightest sense of guilt or regret. " It describes psychopaths eminent Canadian psychiatrist Robert D. KhaER in his book "devoid of conscience. A frightening world of psychopaths. " For many years he as a forensic psychiatrist doing research psychopaths. KhaER, author of two best-selling books and numerous scientific publications, developed the famous "signs of psychopathy checklist" (or short - PCL), which experts consider a reference tool for the diagnosis of psychopathy. This is a list of features and characteristics that are typical of psychopaths, and today it is widely used to assess the presence and severity of psychopathy worldwide.

A checklist of psychopathic traits:

Superficial charm, superficial charm.
Egocentrism, belief in their own greatness and extraordinary significance.
The need for constant mental stimulation.
Pathological lying, and the propensity to fraud.
Intrigue. The tendency to manipulation.
No sense of guilt and regret.
Emotional shallowness.
Callousness, lack of empathy.
The parasitic lifestyle.
Hot temper (poorly controlled outbursts of anger).
Sexual promiscuity.
Behavior problems before the age of 12 years.
The inability of a realistic long-term planning.
The irresponsible parental position.
Repeated marriage, frequent change of partners.
Teenage offense under the age of 15 years.
Violations during the probationary period or dismissal.
Irresponsibility in relation to their own actions and deeds.
A history of multiple positions of the ten following: burglary, robbery, drug use, imprisonment, assassination (murder), unlawful possession of a weapon, sexual assault, criminal negligence, fraud, escape from prison

. Calculation is made as follows:

the presence of characteristic = 2 points;
the likely presence of sign = 1 point;
no sign = 0 points.

Points are added together for each characteristic. Installed KhaER boundaries are: the conclusion of "psychopathy" is possible if the total score is 30 or higher. The maximum possible score of 40 points. This means that you must have a very large number of matches on the grounds to talk about psychopathy. Some experts believe that if the total number of points reaches 30, and, say, greater than 20, then we are talking about the presence of a mild form of psychopathy or psychopathic traits. However, this approach is not an official application.

Eagle Eye: how to recognize a psychopath at home or at work, and time to leave
Attention! We emphasize that these PCL-questionnaires and data processing methods are not intended for general use. They are designed for use by psychiatrists in prison. Non-specialists may incorrectly identify the presence or absence of compliance under any grounds.

For example, if a person quick-tempered, or a scandal with you, it does not mean that he is a psychopath. It is necessary to confirm the presence of several factors. In addition, psychopaths are able to skillfully masked shining facade. Of course, the person living with you side by side, you know a lot.

For example, he was constantly lying or irresponsible behavior towards children. It is important that for approval feature of psychopathy is not enough his one-time displays - it is necessary that human behavior has not changed over the years and more. However, a list similar to the PCL, helps to understand the essence of the concept of "psychopathy". Those who are adversely affected, the victims, it is important to understand the basics and features of personality disorders, at least in order to clarify that the changes in the behavior of "the offender" will not.

psychopaths Psychopaths often associated with people who steal, rob and kill. Indeed, among the criminals, especially practitioners of physical violence, a lot of psychopaths. However, in most cases, psychopathic personalities are not in the dock.

It is with these "commonplace psychopaths' we encounter in everyday life. These are people who have psychopathic traits. We fall in love with them, because they are charming and helpful, we are bound by blood ties with them if they are our parents, brothers, sisters, and we interact with them on the job.

Among senior managers, apparently, quite a number of people have psychopathic traits as leadership position gives the opportunity to realize the craving for power and satisfy the need for attention from others.

This question has been studied by researchers Paul Babiak and Robert D. KhaER. They conducted a study of hundreds of heads of US companies and found that among them were eight psychopaths. (The results were presented at the Open Forum of European science in Stockholm in 2004.) Based on these data, we can say that psychopathy twice as often found in senior management than the rest of the population.

In addition, we are aware of examples of how the state is controlled by the iron hand of the psychopathic personality. The appearance of such people in power more conducive to dictatorship, not democracy. There psychopathic leaders whose determination and rigidity of the support of the broad masses of the population. And only people working in direct contact with them, unaware of the abuse of power and how they are being bullied, harass and punish those who disagree with them.

We fall in love with psychopaths because they are charming and courteous

The greatest harm ordinary psychopaths can cause your home, because behind closed doors at home to harass the family members can be for years, and no one will interfere, no one will tell about it in the media. Outwardly, everything may look quite decent, and the only victims - spouses, children, parents - to learn about their own experience a different reality. Living with a person with psychopathic traits - is never easy. This is confirmed by the history of Cecile and Robin.

Their situation developed under the classical scenario: psychopathic personality (her husband) uses psychological violence, but if the situation is heating up, it often resorts to physical. For him, it is important to maintain power and control over his wife, and he achieves this through threats and manipulation. Cecil constantly being interrogated and permanent criticism.

And when she was bad, the husband does not show compassion, while remaining completely indifferent. He does not feel remorse because of the fact that the fault of his family having financial problems. When he is upset or angry, what happens quite often, he takes out his emotions on Cecile. Robin blame her for all resulting troubles himself considers perfect. In his view, it would be worth even sympathize: it must deal with a woman like Cecil

. Some may consider that there is no Robin psychopathy. It does not use physical force permanently and legally is not a criminal. Perhaps the identity of Robin does not meet all the criteria of "psychopathy checklist features" the most complete and "hard" today.

However, Robin, no doubt, is showing signs of dissociative and antisocial personality disorder. These diagnoses are usually used in relation to the psychopathic personality in the Nordic countries, especially at a forensic psychiatric examination of the person who has committed a violent crime, or offenders.

In any case, whatever the diagnostic system we may use, it is clear that Robin - a man with a pronounced psychopathic traits, so Cecil received reasonable, breaking a relationship with him. He mistreated her and, with a child, felt neither remorse nor repentance, nor the desire to change their behavior.


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