Friday, February 13, 2009

The Mask Of A Sociopath.

All sociopaths wear a mask. The mask of kindness. The mask of generosity. The mask of romance. The mask of attraction. The mask of intimacy. The mask of seduction. And so on.

This is what reels us in. The pretense. The acting. The mask. The mask of perfection. And we, in our infinite loving goodness, reflect that mask back to them. The perfect mirrored reflection of beauty and adoration.

And then one day, that mask cracks. You remember the moment.. The moment when you look in their eyes and you KNOW the truth about them. The moment you recognize the pathological lies, the deception, the manipulation, the con. The game is up.

And from that moment on, your relationship with the sociopath is forever changed. This moment happened for me when…after middle of the night phone calls to his house and cell phone…I looked into his eyes and I KNEW. I knew he was having an affair, and that he was a liar. A year’s worth of investigation (yes, obsessing) has confirmed that nearly everything he told me was a lie.

From that point forward, the cruelty begins. Name-calling. Shouting. Out-of-control rage. Accusations of what you have…and have not done for them. Assaults on your character. Disparaging remarks. Outright slander. Saying horrible things about you to everyone who will listen. The smear campaign begins in full force.

Once the mask slips, you have a full view of who the sociopath actually is. Nothing is hidden from you anymore. They are the most hateful person you have ever encountered.

I equate the mask with a coin…beautiful, golden, intricately detailed and engraved on one side, and the cheapest, molten metal, with indistinguishable or hideous features on the other.

I thought my sociopath had a brain tumor. I couldn’t comprehend how someone who had seemingly been so kind, generous, and thoughtful…seemingly a “knight in shining armor”, turned into such a dark knight—instantaneously. Heartless. Cold. Unfeeling. Unsympathetic. Lying. Cheating. Berating. Chillingly frightening. Brrr.

After the mask cracks and you see their naked hatred, they become vengeful. It is as if they become your mortal enemy; even though you still love them and may try to salvage the relationship. And then they usually become cowardly. If you try to expose them, they will use every amount of charm and conning in their power to figuratively and verbally disarm you. (They are very good at this; they have a lifetime of practice).

They will attempt to dissemble your character piece-by-piece. They will not allow you to confront them with the truth; it is almost as if they become fearful of you and will try to retaliate against you with every piece of personal information they have garnered about you. Oh yes, and they will project upon you the very things that they are doing (and which you are innocent of). And they will tell unimaginable lies about you…that you are vile, manipulative, conning, vindictive, lying, and of course, crazy. Some of these whoppers are so monstrous that they can even ruin relationships you’ve had with family members and close friends. Everything is your fault, and they are the victim.

It is important to realize that just because you have seen their “true” self, they can still be extremely adept at keeping their mask intact for others. I have seen my sociopath go from screaming at me to laughing and smiling while speaking to someone on the phone…within 30 seconds. But you will most likely never see that initial charm again…unless there is something very specific they want from you.

And generally it is a very short time after you see their true self, no longer a reflection of beauty and adoration, that they will leave you. Or perhaps they already have their victim lined up. Because the sociopath cannot tolerate seeing their imperfections through your eyes. They will begin the romance phase, and once again have adoration from their next target. And the next. Then the one after that.

It is an awakening moment, when the mask slips. You are witnessing humanity at its very worst. (If they can be deemed “human”…I prefer to think of them as aliens).

No matter how attractive you initially thought they were, a sociopath is actually very, very ugly…beneath the mask.


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peace&justice said...

This is a great blog! Thank you so much. I was involved with someone exactly like that. He was verbally abusive to me and yet his charm would always win me over and I would end up back into his arms again. I consider myself a very strong woman who does not tolerate such treatment, however, there was something about this man that took over me. After numerous back to back incidents, I became fed up. I took a step back and realized that he is indeed a psycho-path. Nothing was EVER his fault, even when I presented him with numerous evidences I had found, he never admitted to it fully. Sometimes, he would say, it was wrong, than other times he would say, you need to trust what I'm doing, its not like what you think it is, I love you. He is so self-righteous. Very charming, and yet he lives in his own delusional world. Very detached and NEVER accepts responsibility for his own faults. Reflecting on this in a rational way has helped me moved on. I still care and love him, but I know that I could never see myself in a relationship with him EVER AGAIN.

Anonymous said...

OMG! This just descrobed my ex-husband. I could have written this. We have been ordered for the SECOND time to conciliation, which, if you know a sociopath is a total waste of time. He met with her first and so I the abused and victim of his evil against me spent more than an hour being interogated and defending myself instead of talking about my issues i have with him and our children. Just because he asked, they gave me a drug test today. I felt victimized all over again... Ijust want it to stop...How much can a person take of first the relentless and neverending abuse from him and the fact that people just don't believe me. I tell them to educate themselves....