unobject asked: pt. 2* Nothing about being a sociopath intrinsically turns someone into an abuser, unless said person manages their sociopathy. Rather, like every neuroatypicality, being abusive is something that articulates itself differently depending on ones mental frame work. Abuse is always a possibility with any neurological set up- framing it as the outcome of sociopathy to be managed is neurotypicalist.~When nt's are abusive, its never the fault of being nt...
1. it was that person who said that they didn’t care that they were abusive and directly linked that to their sociopathy. if you have a problem with this, I suggest you take it up with them and tell them they don’t represent you; I’ll PM you their tumblr name if you like. or you could just google the quotes and go from there.
2. I would agree with you that the way I framed this issue is a bit leading, except that I’ve seen a lot of people directly argue against that most mild of injunctions. If we can get consensus on that I will be semi-happy.
3. but I’m actually happy to go on record with much more controversial opinions. to me, it’s not that materially relevant whether a person intends to be cruel or has control over it. if you are like this, you need to take responsibility for it to the best of your ability.
4. let me make it personal. most people have huge flaws: some of mine are that I’m unreliable, passive, cynical, distant, snobbish, pretentious, abrasive, negative, petty, judgemental, and weirdly puritanical. I’ve caused people a lot of pain with my behaviour. many if not most of these traits are directly related to my various mental health issues. to me, that doesn’t excuse them; rather, it blurs the line between “mental health issue” and “personality flaw”. like, I’m not going to say that my consistent failure to meet commitments I’ve made to my friends is unrelated to my depression because that’s just not true. it is directly caused by my depressive tendencies. directly. it is also a moral failing. nor am I going to say that it’s not my fault because the depression did it. I cannot operate in this world if I draw a rigid line excusing me from culpability from any action significantly influenced by my mental health conditions, because all of my actions are thus influenced. I know that a lot of people think of depression as a parasite on their true personality and that this is helpful for them, that it makes depressive symptoms seem less intractable and essential to who they are. but I think it’s mostly a convenient fiction. depression is biochemical for sure, but so is personality, and while they’re different, there is no clear dividing line between them. I think that the drive to radically separate mental illness from personality (or, for that matter, NTs from non-NTs) is misguided and fundamentally silly.
(4.5. I just know that someone is going to think that I’ve exaggerated my flaws due to depressive low self-esteem or internalised ableism. My self-esteem is fine, I just don’t feel the need to mention my many wonderful personality traits as they’re not relevant here. I would also suggest that the need to erase the opinions of someone with mental health issues on the grounds of those mental health issues is actually ableist.)
5. the weirdness of making a harsh division between personality traits (for which one is culpable) and things to do with mental illness (for which one is not culpable) is particularly present when one is speaking of personality disorders, which are defined as “personality that causes problems for self and/or others”. They are qualitatively different from other mental health issues such as psychosis and phobias. they are defined only by an aggregate of behaviours and character traits, that must be consistent across a person’s lifetime, and may not always cause suffering for that person themselves. the line that divides “personality disorder” from “difficult person” appears to me to be purely socially constructed.
6. my understanding is that sociopathy and psychopathy are no longer recognised medical conditions. the WHO diagnostic criteria for antisocial personality disorder are:
1. Callous unconcern for the feelings of others and lack of the capacity for empathy.
2. Gross and persistent attitude of irresponsibility and disregard for social norms, rules, and obligations.
3. Incapacity to maintain enduring relationships.
4. Very low tolerance to frustration and a low threshold for discharge of aggression, including violence.
5. Incapacity to experience guilt and to profit from experience, particularly punishment.
6. Markedly prone to blame others or to offer plausible rationalizations for the behavior bringing the subject into conflict.
7. Persistent irritability.
I would suggest that if you believe that abusive behaviour is always and entirely separate from mental illness or non-normative neurology, you must also believe that antisocial personality disorder as thus defined should not be a listed mental disorder, as it is more or less defined by abusive behaviour.
7. I have respect for people recognising they have dickish tendencies and struggling against them. I cannot respect any kind of evasion of responsibility for the effect of one’s behaviour on others.