Pathological Relationships

Dealing with a problem partner

The Successful Pathological

Pathologicals come in all levels of social and economic success.

Pathology Education teaches that pathological partners come in all levels of social and economic success.

Survivors say, "He's a doctor" to which I respond "SO?" So what. Doctors, attorneys, clergy, law enforcement---it's not the job that's pathological--- it's the character and personality disorders underneath. 

Pathologicals flock to all types of careers. Those with high levels of narcissism and psychopathy flock to areas where they are experts, heroes, or are able to climb high up the career ladder. These disorders 'want' adoration. You don't get a lot of that on the back end of garbage truck as a worker.

Paul Babiak and Robert Hare wrote about this in their book 'Snakes in Suits: When Psychopaths Go to Work.' The book examines the rise of white collar psychopathy in our country and in the work place.  Some forms of pathology hide very well within their careers and success. A subconscious belief system is "If they are successful, they must be ok."  

A degree from Yale means he's smart. It doesn't mean he's safe.  A doctor that saves 'others lives' doesn't mean he won't take yours. Clergy who will pray for others souls doesn't mean he isn't soul-deadening in a personal relationship.

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We only have to look at the nightly news to see examples in our culture of those within the 'helping profession' that were really predators:

  • pediatricians who sexually abused children
  • religious leaders who led the sheep astray
  • psychologists who had sex with their clients
  • trusted financial advisors who stole people blind
  • loving partners who murdered their wives and children

People who appeared 'normal' or 'successful' to others were disguised dangerous and disordered persons.    

Pathologicals with a lot of success and money are often the hardest ones to leave according to their partners. They have more connections, can pay off more bribes, get better outcomes in court, skip on retraining orders, talk their way out of all sorts of legal issues because of who they are, what they have, or who they know. Partners are at a disadvantage when leaving the wealthy pathological.

'They are sicker than we are smart' is a logo we have long taught in Pathology Education. Leaving a successful pathological is often difficult because non-pathological partners can never be as deceitful, conning, or manipulative to fight on their turf. Non-pathologicals don't think in those terms so their sickness ends up as gain for them--up the career ladder, out of the marriage, or anywhere else they want to go.    

In the end, success, career, or wealth has NOTHING to do with mental health or your safety. Career is just that. It's what they do for a living or the vehicle in which they hunt their prey.

Sandra L. Brown, M.A., is CEO of The Institute for Relational Harm Reduction and Public Pathology Education.

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