Written by Winifred Rule, author of Born To Destroy. My mother and sister display high levels of psychopathic traits. Living with them enabled me to see their entire personalities—not just what the psychiatrist or psychologist sees at the opposite side of the desk. They sought to destroy me whenever possible. Their strategy came in the form of innuendo to undermine self-esteem, or to bully me and turn friends and family against me by poisoning those who knew me behind my back. There is no end to what they would do to shatter my life. They were pathological liars, in many ways more cunning and manipulative than many males who display psychopathic traits.
My mother and sister desire to be the center of attention and demand center stage. Around people, their voices rise octaves above everyone else while their arms flail in all directions, turning all attention to themselves. Listen closely to their style of speech—how they manage to play the victim. They may shed crocodile tears to play on your sympathy, and the next moment their tears can transform into raucous laughter. Their “personalities” turn on and off like neon signs.
You dare not challenge them. This could trigger a ballistic response. Both my mother and sister are known for their histrionics. Their award winning performances are convincing enough to persuade listeners to believe their side of the story–even after hearing your side first. They resort to whatever means to get what they want, and this includes flirtations with married men, and coopting through seduction. In the end, they are loyal to no one. They believe they are entitled to everything while it pleases them to give you nothing. They gloat over others’ misfortune and, while gloating, you may even notice a smirk on their faces. After all, why should anyone else have more than they! They can steal or even deliberately damage your treasured possession, but if they get caught, they will never apologize because it is you who are crazy. They distort all stories in their favor, and blame others for what they do.
At the core, neither my mother nor sister likes herself. But do not feel sorry for them. No matter what you do, no matter what you give, they remain ungrateful. They are extremely envious and desire to obtain everything that they want since they believe they were cheated out of life’s bounty, and it is up to them to even the score. What they want is impossible to get. How come the movie producers are not banging down their doors? How come they did not get long, stilted legs like Doris Day? Mind you, what they want has no end and brings no satisfaction. They appreciate nothing. Beware of confidential information. They are adept at sidling up to people. They can size you up in a moment while you are still trying to figure them out.
What can you do if your mother, sister, or other close friend or family member may fit into this character type? It is difficult, if not impossible, to understand what is happening without professional guidance. Seek out a psychologist with specialized training in the psychopathic personality disorder and share your experiences with him or her. In my personal experience, my only option was to avoid and eliminate them from my life because they always brought pain, confusion, and worse. Avoidance has been the best approach to protecting my psychological and physical well-being from their predations. Confrontation has never worked. If you must maintain some connection with them, your psychologist may suggest some strategies to minimize their effect on you.
My book, Born to Destroy, is one of the first instructional books on the female psychopath in the family setting. It is my personal story, designed to lend insight to all those confused souls who are living a similar existence as my own. It may be purchased through the Aftermath Foundation Store.
This post is also available in: Spanish