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but then in the last chapters she makes an effort to explain that the love (she is strangely able to feel)
on 24 June 2015
Very interesting book, though can't really be sure if the author is an actual sociopath, just a narcissist (which she is), emotionally damaged from childhood, or a sociopath wannabe.
After watching her on Dr Phil - one of the very rare interviews she did- she seemed to be trying to hide her unease with his questions under a bit of a façade, as if trying to convince him and herself that she is truly a sociopath.
From the book she describes sociopaths as cold-hearted, but then in the last chapters she makes an effort to explain that the love (she is strangely able to feel), is one of the few things that kept her from being worse than she could have been justifying her ability to love as that sociopaths just love differently. I have come across sociopaths before and though this is still a subject that requires a lot of development and research, sociopaths do not love, really. If she is, then I would say she might be part of the lighter shade of sociopathy, which her very surprised close friend commenting on Dr Phil about not knowing this side of the author at all, convinced me of.
The book is really easy to read, it's well written and the author has done a lot of research on the sociopath subject.
It sort of glorifies sociopathy, the author does mention some bad things she had to face due to her alleged sociopathy maybe she really has done worse and she doesn't mention them for legal reasons... but it really felt more narcissistic description of herself than sociopathic. I would say she was emotionally damaged at childhood and convinced herself it was better not to feel anything and grow self-centred and selfish... Since I don't know the author, can't really confirm my suspicion.
Overall some of the traits she describes exist in many non-sociopathic people, as people can be selfish, self-centred, manipulative, not feel sorry for killing a hamster like creature, have a certain degree of dishonesty, be rational and still have some degree of empathy, or feeling (love).
It's still worth a read for those interested in this subject, even to just figure out/debate whether this author really is as sociopathic as she claims.
At the moment of writing this review I hadn't yet finished the book- so after I finished I got to say that I was annoyed with lots of fallacies she wrote, as in associations of the sort -so and so said that geniuses are misunderstood people, sociopaths are misunderstood, therefore all sociopaths are misunderstood genius... - What???!! That really put me off. I understand she can be manipulative, but that made me question her intelligence which at least until those parts I really thought she had.
“ “How Do You Raise a Prodigy?” Andrew Solomon speaks of a prodigy as” a monster that violates the natural order” (…)”
“Perhaps if we treat sociopathic children more like prodigies and less like monsters, they might direct their unique talents (…)”
And there are plenty more examples like that. She picks lines of researchers and studies that say something she wants to attribute to sociopaths and have no relationship whatsoever and then simply puts them together surreptitiously as if they were intrinsically linked!! That made no sense to me, which really is a shame since I actually liked the book and it would have been good to be able to take her somewhat seriously, instead of suspecting she might be a bit delusional, self- aggrandisement apart.
The other thing was that in the last chapter she seems to try to stimulate empathy from the readers, for the sociopaths as "we are not as bad as the world makes us, so be nice to us" type of speech. I always thought sociopaths didn't/don't care for/require empathy of any sort. And I'm yet to meet sociopaths who don't take pleasure in being destructive to others around, to make me feel any empathy for them regardless of any factuality in them being the “spawn of the devil” which I doubt they are - unless they are a fiction character which she also talks about.
It's almost like a rattlesnake asking to be treated nicely for not being able to be nothing but poisonous and bite anyone that comes closer. Difference is rattlesnakes don't have free will.
A harmless sociopath? - perhaps that's what they call “high functioning”, but never met one except in fiction which was a bit my posture with reading this book.
Still doubt she is what she claims, she sounds more a narcissist than sociopath, but enjoyed reading it for the most part.