I remain convinced that shallow affect is central to the psychopathic condition as well as my own existence. However, I believe comorbidity can lead to interesting fluctuations of emotion. Specifically, the thought of my own comorbid Borderline Personality Disorder comes to mind.
Borderline Personality Disorder is a complex disorder whose central features revolve around failed emotional regulation. I defer the reader to any number of resources on the subject, but I want to focus primarily on what is known as ‘splitting’. Splitting refers to the fact that the Borderline will often split another person between two states: idealization and devaluation. That is, another person relative to the Borderline is often in a godlike status or a non-person status. I find that my emotional disregulation happens mostly when transitioning between these two states.
I am not good with strong emotions. They are rare but completely overwhelming when present. The vast majority of the time, easily 99% or more, I am stoic and without much resembling emotion. However, when I idealize or devalue, I find that my emotions take off. When I idealize a person, I find that I am often elated to be around them and experience feelings resembling neurotypical joy or gratitude. Such feelings are actually likely to make me engage in the prototypical Borderline behavior of self-mutilation as I simply cannot handle the magnitude of emotion even if it is small relative to what many neurotypicals would feel. Like a confused child who is in pain, I have to release somehow and that often comes in the form of blades. Right now, I look at my right arm and see dozens of fresh wounds where the latest round of idealization has caused me to release in a very bloody fashion.
Devaluation is less troublesome for me. As far as emotions go, this devaluation is usually accompanied with anger, one of the few emotions that I regularly experience. Anger does not cause me to reach for the blade, but it does lead to me to find ways of ruining a person for their apparent wrongs. A sudden shift from devaluation to idealization can cause the emotions described earlier to feel even stronger, however, which can be dangerous for all involved.
I would love to hear from other Borderline psychopaths. I want to know how diverse this combination of mental disorders is. I want to know why we reach for knives when we do and how we cope with the emotional disregulation that runs counter to the stoicism psychopathy brings the majority of the time.