Wicked Deeds

Examining criminal motives and behavior

How to Tell a Sociopath from a Psychopath

Sociopathic and psychopathic criminals think and behave very differently. The causes of the two underlying disorders are also separate and distinct. Learn about these important differences here. Read More

Emotional Outbursts

There is something wrong with this article. First you said that sociopaths and psychopaths both have "A tendency to display violent behavior and emotional outbursts."

After that you said that that psychopaths "Unlike their sociopathic counterparts, psychopathic criminals are cool, calm, and meticulous."

So which one is it? are psychopaths calm? Can they control their emotions or do they get emotional outbursts?

Emotional Outbursts

Excellent question. Both sociopaths and psychopaths can exhibit emotional outbursts but the underlying cause is different for each. Psychopaths do so out of mimicry (believing it to be appropriate) while sociopaths do so from a lack of control. Hope that helps.

Emotional Outbursts

So basically psychopaths deceive people and show them a side of their personality that does not actually exist, right?

Therefore, they are like actors who play a role, and they play it so well and make it look so genuine that people believe them. So that makes psychopathy the most dangerous of all antisocial personality disorders. Did I get that right?

Emotional Outbursts

Yes, you are essentially correct. Psychopaths excel in the art of deception and their lack of pity and remorse, and tendency toward violence, makes them particularly dangerous! Thank you for asking.

Sociopaths have true

Sociopaths have true emotional outburts because they can actually feel. psychopaths have the outbursts in order to manipulate and control others. Its actually sad that the one that actually has some feeling left in them is the one that fails harder at life.

True feelings

That is an interesting observation. Ironic indeed.

Rollercoasters and Racecars

The emotional rollercoaster ride of a sociopath is often a hindrance to himself while a Psychopaths driven uncaring personality causes pain to others for they are the ultimate social chameleons but what is really sad is that most people lack empathy and fail to see the charade for what it is.....

from all the psychology

from all the psychology documents i've read, the psychopath and sociopath in this are swapped. sociopaths are the ones that blend in, are meticulous, plan, and all that whereas psychopaths are the opposite. i would know.... i'm a sociopath afterall.


Thanks for sharing

I noticed too...

I know that I've read the opposite definitions elsewhere too. I consider both words interchangeable, at least now when I describe myself.

I also noticed how you were brushed off after admitting your sociopathy, Anon. Further proof we're all still very uncharted territory no one truly wants to explore.

anyone can say they are a

anyone can say they are a sociopath on the internet. I know because I'm a Psychopath.

I noticed at the beginning of

I noticed at the beginning of these comments someone argues that psychopathy and sociopathy are the same, yet they also refer to themselves as one. I don't think you're a psychopath, probably just an idiot with too much time on your hands, causing you to diagnose yourself with psychopathy either as an excuse for something or simply to make you interesting. If you truly were a psychopath, you wouldn't feel as though you had anything wrong with you.

Actually, a psychopath knows

Actually, a psychopath knows exactly what they are (Gods wrapped in flesh) and can easily identify others who share their gift.

Psychopaths view so-called "normal" people as weak, overly emotional sheep and see themselves as superior beings.

And you know what?


Pretty much all the world leaders and all the top performers in every field (past and present) are psychopaths... thus, only a foolish socialist sheep would label psychopaths as abnormal.

Not that they care what the sheep think...

So long as you keep getting up at 7am each day during the best years of your life in order to expand their wealth and power, they couldn't care less about you.

The world is not fair. Never has been and never will be. The only personality type (yes, it's a personality type, not an illness) designed to thrive on this planet is that of the psychopath... natural selection, see?

As for Psychopath and Sociopath differences...

They are the SAME thing! The only difference between those at the top of their game and those in a jail cell is their level of intelligence, environment and life experience.

"If you truly were a psychopath, you wouldn't feel as though you had anything wrong with you."

Feeling Different

To much emotions or at least control of them (Sociopaths) vs. the lack of feeling empathy (Psychopaths) many Psychopath's are in jail or occupy the lower rungs of society and quite a few Sociopaths are successful because either disorder is not a guarantee of superior intelligence, talent, or ability.

Again, they are the SAME

Again, they are the SAME thing...

Even the white coats and so-called experts are confused! As someone who commented earlier:

"from all the psychology documents i've read, the psychopath and sociopath in this are swapped"

Indeed, you will find all the *cough*, *cough* experts contradict one another in regards to the ASPD (antisocial personality disorder)...

It is a spectrum... no two people are identical... we are ALL unique and thus are higher or lower on the spectrum.

And it isn't a disorder. On the contrary, the sheep are the ones who are broken, hence their lowly position in life.

Sigh! I'm sure there will come a day (with the ways things are trending I'm positive) when heterosexuality will be classed as a disorder.

Anyway, psychopathy has nothing to do with intelligence, however, the less intelligent are those who usually end up in jail.

Of course, upbringing and environment play a part, too.

Self-control comes down to intelligence...

We all have emotions (psychopaths only lack empathy), however, the intelligent psychopath understands there is a time and a place...

... he realizes it's better to stay in control and plot (to perfection) the downfall of his enemies than being the hot-head who brings himself down.

of course psychopathy is a

of course psychopathy is a disorder. Having no empathy and no remorse and thus being perfectly able to kill and torture other people without feeling guilty about it is not just a personality type. That's exactly what psychopaths are capable to do, even though many of them don't do it. And the only sheep here is you, if you believe that this is natural selection, because psychopaths excel in our capitalist society and the rest are just weak. This is exactly what you Americans (I reckon you are one) are being infiltrated with from birth. And no, being a psychopath does not mean to know when to display emotions and having self control. They FAKE these emotions in order to manipulate. They don't actually feel them. Get it?

But why would an intelligent

But why would an intelligent psych/sociopath want "to kill and torture other people..."? Most everyone is capable of doing so, but if you can avoid having reasons to we are all better off. If youre smart you can see past the need to harm others in order to attain success. I think a distinction needs to be made here as to whether or not these types of people enjoy harming other people. Taking advantage of people is evolution, we all do that; some are just better at it. Lacking empathy would make it a lot easier. But is that better for humanity as a whole? That is the question. What are the self regulating factors in society that prevent the lacking of empathy to flourish? Obviously there is a significant percentage of the population that feels empathy. Capitalism may just be the environment in which those lacking empathy can find success. In that case we would expect to find a higher concentration of those types of individuals, as i believe we have. Intelligence and education is the defining characteristic for most successful individuals.

Thank You for being Honest

I know your people very well, I have been able to see you on sight--I am not sure how to define it but its in your eyes, you are different and unique. I know what you doing currently, and I have driven myself mad trying to understand. I am unique in that I feel all emotions and yet "my" people do not understand me half the time, I am kind of stuck in a weird middle area between your people and mine in that I can understand both and I obviously identify as a "sheep" I guess but with a need to protect them from the danger I have known and see coming basically my whole life....if you or one of you would trade emails or communicate with me someone, I honestly just want to ask about the markings on some real old artifacts found in several places around the world. I am the curious type, and a lover of history, I know you know. I know your the Children or the makers or the rulers or the people who made the design. Is it related to chemistry? The shape? Tate Matson tatematson@live.com

I will cease all bad or any postings anywhere in fact If you could tell me about the design.

I do not know why--but I downloaded the book below--and I know what's happening, and I know you know what I mean. I almost feel like I am a lab rat? Why did I do that? I mean I honestly already knew the conclusions in that book, and we both know why I know them....why? I think I know the answer but honestly I am almost scared to know the truth, please communicate with me.

Applying Evolutionary Anthropology to a Changing World

As someone who had,

As someone who had, unfortunately, Narc parents, and has had a relationship with a psychopath I tend to agree with you.

The psychopath I knew was a very powerful personality, intelligent, and hugely successful in business. He referred to non psychopaths as 'the little people'
He best friend, side kick, crony, another psychopath (birds of a feather) was a criminal who made millions and spent half of his life in prison, something he regarded as a occupational hazard.

IMO narcissism/sociopathy/psychopathy are all of the same spectrum. Personality disorders, not 'illnesses'. None can be 'cured' by therapy, no more than therapy will turn blue eyes brown.

Yes, they regard themselves as Gods and I suspect most world leaders, politicians and very successful people are psychopaths.
Single minded and ruthless they never lose sight of their ultimate goal, they go for it and destroy anyone in their way.

As I realized my charming partner was a psychopath I became both fascinated, awed, in thrall to him, I couldn't help but admire this all powerful fearless creature. A law unto only himself.
I also became revolted, because. He was truly evil.

I learnt so much from him that would have helped me through my life. See I am a nice, normal person (with issues) I've spent a life time telling the truth, being bullied and scapegoated for it.
What a fool.
He told me, "Anna, you must 'play' people to be successful, read them, befriend them, use them".

Sadly he was right.

I did leave him, his personality was crushing, I was disappearing.

Do you know what his

Do you know what his definition of successful is? Probably having money and power? He is only right if you both have the same definition of successful. I'm successful, I have a family that love me and I love them. I don't need millions and I don't need power over other people, just myself.


What is the difference between alexithymia and psychopathy?


That is a question better directed to a psychotherapist, although I can say that the two disorders are correlated in some ways.

Can a person be BOTH a

Can a person be BOTH a sociopath AND a psychopath?

Can a person be BOTH a sociopath AND a psychopath?

Sociopathy and psychopathy are separate disorders but there is significant overlap between them in terms of traits, which leads to the confusion. Generally speaking, a person will be categorized as one or the other. Thanks for asking.

How to Tell a Sociopath(Antisocial) from a Psychopath?

Sociopath (Antisocial Pd) is prone to Affective Violence
Psychopath (Psychopathic Pd) is prone to Predatory Violence

Can a person be BOTH a sociopath AND a psychopath?

Co-morbid behaviour is possible.

Psychopathic person with Antisocial co-morbidity (For example Heriberto Lazcano)
Antisocial person with Psychopathic co-morbidity (For example Miguel Angel Trevino Morales)

Police officers

You don't mention that psychopaths also have a need for power and control over others. Do you not agree with this or did you simply forget to mention it? Also, is there any known correlation between psychopaths and those who would commit child sex crimes or sex crimes in general?

Police Officers

Although some psychopaths do have a need for power, domination and control of others, it is not a general characteristic of the disorder. And, yes, there is a correlation between psychopathy and sexual sadism and assault. Thank you for asking.

Do you agree that sex crimes

Do you agree that sex crimes aren't about sex at all but rather having power and control over others? So if there is a proven correlation between psychopathy and sexual assault, doesn't that also prove that there exists a need for power and control in the psychopath's mental make-up? Thank you.

Correlation not causality

Actually, no, you are confusing correlation with causality. It is true that some psychopaths crave power and control and it is also true that some (a small minority) become sexual deviants. This does not mean that either phenomenon is a common trait of psychopaths, however, as is lack of empathy, for example.

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Scott Bonn, Ph.D., a professor of criminology at Drew University, is an expert on criminal behavior and motivations.


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