“Psychopaths” are usually called people with an explosive temperament or those who are simply eccentric, which does not always to be true. This is a pretty simplistic explanation. Psychopathy is a personality disorder. And statistically shown, the majority of psychopaths tend to be men.
They can be extremely charming, courteous, and outgoing on the outside, but long-term relationships with them are highly toxic to their partners.
How to know that we are dealing with a psychopath, and not just a person with a complex personality? Of course, only a specialist can make a diagnosis, but here are some red flags that are worth paying attention to.
1. He looks down on you
A psychopath will directly or indirectly emphasize his superiority over a partner who supposedly falls short of his level: “You are stupid and uneducated”, “You are too emotional”, “You are fat and notorious.”, these are only some of the sentences you directed at their partners in order to humiliate them.
Next to the psychopathic personality, another partner feels ”inferior”, worthless and unworthy, with only one task: to please and appease his idol.
2. His declarations of love are quickly replaced by indifference
He can look after you for a while, and your honeymoon can be very romantic … But he quickly cools down and begins to treat you with disdain. Relationship with a psychopath is like a roller coaster: it is love and hate, quarrels and reconciliation. Disrespect quickly turns into insults.
For a victim, this situation may be truly traumatic and fraught with depression, neuroses, drug or alcohol abuse. And in any case – post-traumatic syndrome.
3. He does not know how to admit his guilt
He is never responsible for what is happening and for his actions – others are always to blame. Even when his guilt is obvious, he deftly twists and presents what happened as an involuntary mistake or a joke. Or assures that he was misunderstood. Or that the partner is simply too sensitive. In one word, he does everything to minimize his responsibility.
4. He uses manipulation to win you over
For a psychopath, courtship is just a game: he seduces with manipulative tricks, in which there is neither warmth nor sincerity. Kindness, attention, care, gifts, travel – for him these are only means to get what he wants. He expects that later, when this “sweet” period is over, the partner will pay for all this by obedience.
5. One partner is not enough for him
The psychopath does not know how to build close, sincere relationships, he quickly becomes bored and starts looking for new adventures. This does not mean that he will immediately leave the victim – such people know how to combine several novels at once.
6. He reacts aggressively to any criticism
Outwardly, he gives the impression of a domineering, narcissistic and soulless person who does not care about the experiences of others. But how sharply and with what aggression he reacts when he is criticized, questioned or neglected!
The reason is not that he is insecure or needs approval from others. The whole point is that he believes in his superiority and power over others. And therefore he cannot stand if someone points out his weakness or communicates with him “incorrectly”.
7. It is important for him to feel like a winner in everything
In his view, the world is divided into winners and losers. And it is very important for him to be among the first in everything, even in the little things. This attitude is incompatible with a healthy relationship that involves cooperation, compromise, and the ability to repent.
8. You lose the ability to act reasonably near him
With a long-term relationship, the psychopath’s partner begins to experience cognitive impairment: he may have problems with memory, concentration, attention, motivation and self-organization. He becomes distracted, less effective, overwhelmed by anxiety. This has a great impact on his partner, who tends to feel lost as well.
9. He wants to dominate
The psychopath likes to humiliate, control and devalue others – this is how he asserts his power over you. But he cannot stand if they try to point out his behavior, and quickly falls into a rage. Moreover, he tries to take revenge on the “offender”.
10. He often hides the truth
This is another manifestation of the manipulation tendencies. He can keep silent about something or lie. Moreover, a lie can relate to both insignificant trifles and very important things.
11. He has no moral principles
The psychopath is dismissive of social norms and moral rules and easily breaks them. Cheating of all kinds, theft, harassment, intimidation, revenge towards someone who stands in his way – all these means are quite OK for him.
12. He is incapable of deep feelings
He can charm and demonstrate sympathy, which he is not really capable of. When dealing with a stranger, a psychopath can prove himself much better than he is used to behaving with his partner – especially if he needs to appear as a strong person or cause envy.
13. He declares himself a victim
This is a typical form of manipulation when a psychopath uses when dealing with an ordinary person who shows empathy. They use your capacity for empathy and compassion by portraying themselves as unhappy victims – so that they could get away with any wrongdoing. This allows them to avoid blame and responsibility and pursue their goals.
14. Kindness and respect are alien to him
They do not have a developed sense of empathy, so the partner is forced to explain every time how to treat other people in a human way.
15. You feel like you’ll never be good enough
The psychopath tends to blame, criticize and thus belittle his partner every now and then: “I don’t like the way you dressed! You didn’t clean the house well! You’ve become so ugly! Don’t say a word! Just think how vulnerable you are! How annoying it is! ” He interprets any requests or demands of a partner as attempts to control him.
(reference: Rhonda Freeman, a clinical neuropsychologist)