I’m not convinced that the psychopath does not want interpersonal relationships, but I am convinced that the psychopath grows tired of the steps needed to create and/or maintain those relationships. I believe this sentiment is summed up best by this finely worded forum post by one of the moderators:
I want a cactus. But instead I end up getting some needy little sunflower and I put it in the shade because I only want to look at it on occasion. Then one day I go to admire my flower and it’s dead. I neglect them. I only want to see them on my terms.
I’ve often used a similar analogy to describe my stance on interpersonal relationships. I really, really do want some semblance of an interpersonal relationship, but I am a perpetual loner because I have zero desire to grow and maintain those relationships. I want to be surrounded by potted plants; plants that require the most minimal of care and are always available on my terms.
This, ultimately, is the key point for interpersonal relationships with the psychopath. The psychopath, with her parasitic and self-centered ways, will take far more than she gives. There is no give and take, only ‘take’. Neurotypicals may feel taken advantage of in this respect, but what is the price for the psychopath? A lifetime of shallow or non-existent acquaintanceships?
I often talk with my therapist about this subject. I would like to have company in my life, be it platonic or romantic, but I have no desire to put on a mask with prospective individuals. I want them to accept me as I am, which is unfathomable to most neurotypicals. I am exhausted by the demands of wearing a mask in my life and I feel entitled to not wear a mask with those in my inner circle; my interpersonal friendships and relationships. She points out, routinely, that I can’t have it both ways. I can’t remain unmasked and indifferent to those around me while having those around me fall into appropriate social orbits. Not unless I surround myself with the severely mentally ill or otherwise masochistic.
I haven’t quite figured out if I am willing to change. I’m tired of playing parts and of wearing masks. I want to take it all and give nothing in return. I know there is great incentive for the psychopath to wear a mask with those she surrounds herself with, but at what point does the lack of sunlight on the face outweigh the benefits of having company that is not “worthy” to begin with? It’s a very personal decision for the psychopath – of which many have the stamina to maintain those masks that I am unwilling to wear as often as is demanded – to make and thus far, I choose inaction. As such, I will continue to be a loner, but I’ll have a nice tan.