Befriending Darkness

July 7, 2010

Well, I am a overly curious person and I question about everything in life. And I’m overly accepting of those different than I am, due to my childhood of not being accepted and being harassed for being different. And sometimes, the combination of the two makes for some insanely stupid choices on my part. And last year was no exception! :-/

On another web-community site, I had ran across an older man, who claimed to be spiritually inclined toward my faith. Except he was not Wicca or claiming it, but claiming some other kind of obscured belief in Paganism. But as the rule of Paganism, there are so many different branches within it, because it’s an open and free belief that encourages free-thinking and walking ones own path. So, I didn’t think much of the fact that he never did name his personal path or claim any one of the known branches.

I don’t know why, but after a while of becoming friends with me and others, this man decided to make the public announcement on the site…. that he was a “former Psychopath”. Of course, myself and others denied this, thinking that maybe he was being down on himself. He seemed very kind, loving, gentle, the opposite of what is most known of the infamous Psychopaths in history. But he got highly defensive, when we tried to say otherwise.

People instantly think of serial killers like Charles Manson, Ted Bundy, and David Berkowitz, when it comes to Psychopathy. But the real truth is that serial killers with this disorder is very rare, as most Psychopaths try to stay under the radar of the law and work lower-level crimes against others, in the form of fraud and heartbreak (learn more here: Profile Of A Psychopath ). In fact 4% of our population are Psychopaths and there is a chance that you’ve already been a victim of one, at least once or twice, already. No one can possibly claim that they haven’t ran across one, in other words.

But, I was already a friend to this man (or thought so), and my curiosity got the better of me. Mixed with the flaw, that we women sometimes have, that maybe I can help HEAL a person with showing more love. Back then, Psychopaths (also known as Sociopaths or “Antisocial Personality Disorder” in the DSM-IV) have always been a huge question to me. It means that the part of a person’s brain, that controls empathy and guilt, is damaged. So a person can not feel like most of us, or have compassion for anyone else, except for themselves. I always wanted to know WHY, and how, does a person get that way. I can’t understand how a person could live through life, not feeling for anything or anyone, but themselves. It is the darkest of situations, which completely alludes me. And I only wanted to understand more.

So, I did the stupid thing, of trying to stay this man’s friend. I actually believed that it would be safe, being that he was online only, miles away from me. And he was also elderly, very broken in his health, sick and confined to a wheelchair most of the time. This was my chance to make a friend and to understand this phenomenon more… or so I thought.

He was very charming, seemingly knowledgeable, and he had a way with putting people at ease, even if they knew of his announcement. Even though he had claimed to be an “former Psychopath”, I knew better than to believe that. There is no known cure for Psychopathy and there is no known way for avoiding crossing paths with one either. It’s a condition that alludes many people and psychologists. Because we all have empathy and guilt, we can never understand the inner workings of a person without it, unless we are psychopaths ourselves.

The first thing that this man played on was my loneliness for a friend and my own father issues. He began spending lots of time with me, on the site, speaking very highly and lovingly about his wife. He also claimed that if he ever wanted a daughter in life, he would want a daughter just like me. My own father denied me and often told me, growing up, that he wished for a better and more cooler daughter. He also was abusive toward me and my mother. So, this man played on that need and want, from deep inside of me, an example of a loving husband and maybe a loving father. I did fall for that and got more relaxed around him.

But a few times, animal instinct kicked in, as he was becoming too close and too fast… and I got the heebee-jeebies! I didn’t know why or how, but my instincts was telling me to back away a bit, even though I was convinced that he was telling me the truth and felt genuine feelings toward me. It can be described as a Predator versus Prey instinct, as we often react to defending ourselves, when the body senses danger. Even if our heart and minds say one thing, our bodies will alert us of harm. And this man was very prone to violence.

He told us all of his past with sexual child abuse, in the hands of a neighboring older boy. It only stopped, when he took a knife from his parent’s kitchen and stabbed the older boy in his private parts. And from then on, he had a love for knives and collected many of them, which he also shared photos of various knifes that he had collected over the years. But during his young adult years – middle age, he would work the rape-crisis lines, coaxing details and locations of the victim’s attackers. Then he would hunt down those attackers at night, stabbing the accused outside of their respective apartments. He simply stated on his public announcement, “I can confess this now, because I’m old and dying, and no one can do anything about it now.”

In private, he once told me that his wife loves him so much and takes good care of him. And from what I could tell, he was very well taken care of and loved by this woman! However, he confessed that he felt nothing for her and she could die at any moment, and he wouldn’t care. That left me feeling very chilled to the bone. But, in spite of that, I called this man “papa” and continued to be his friend.

What finally ended it, I was having trouble with other members of that site, so I took a vacation from it. I did leave this man my private email address and where to find me on FaceBook. This is beyond stupid, I know! But this is also the charm and grip that a Psychopath is capable of. A lot of times, I was put at ease and believed this man to be as loving and caring as he had claimed. But at this point, I logged off the site and stayed away for six months. When I finally logged back on, I contacted him first before any others, telling him how much I missed my “papa”.

By now, he had no use for me anymore, agitated that I had left the site for so long. I explained again on why I had to, and reminded him that I gave him other means of contacting me, and I actually thought he would understand my own emotions and why it was best for me to take a break. He didn’t and could only see his own point of view… He wanted me there on that site, even if it had hurt me to be there, for his own sake. And since I did not put his wants over my own need, he just didn’t know me anymore.

He told me to stop calling him “papa”, referred to me only by my username, and no more talks of me being the daughter he always wanted. He told me that he didn’t know me and I knew nothing of him. And he began to call me “a normal”, separating me and others with empathy and guilt, as inferior beings compared to being a Psychopath. I was hurt and cried a little, as it felt like I was being rejected by a father-figure, all over again. But, I simply sighed and let it go. I did not log onto the site anymore, nor do I have any plans to in the future.

But every now and then, I get a friendly gesture from him, sent to my email account, from the site. It’s an email-alert to let me know that he had sent me virtual gift or smiley my way, on the site. I also have no plans to responding to that either. I have learned my lesson… and a little more about Psychopathy, in a way. But, it was still a stupid thing I had done, possibly dangerous too, and I don’t recommend others purposely trying to make friends with Psychopaths. And if you are in a relationship or friendship with one, get help and get out of it, NOW. :-o



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