The Ivory Box – More on Attachment Disorders in the Psychopath

I talked recently about my feelings going into to future relationships.  I know that, as a psychopath, I will remain predatory and that the fate that is best for any potential paramour involves them staying far away.  However, I’ve been wondering about my motivations for even seeking a relationship.  The truth is, no one is interesting or otherwise worth my time.  My supreme narcissism and self-centeredness has left me viewing others as mere slabs of meat – slabs of meat that can be devoured but with as little invested interest as one would squash a fly.  Most of the time, I am indifferent to others around me.  The exception is when I am hostile toward others.  Some would call these symptoms of an attachment disorder, though the name concerns me not.  All I know is that I am surrounded by those that I cannot care about.  They aren’t worth my time; no one is.

It’s a somewhat damning realization.  I live a lonely life as I keep hardly any acquaintances. Those I do keep know that I do not value them except maybe as a possession, like an ivory box or something.  Possession … that sounds right.  But, I am no hoarder.  Just as I am judicious with those toys and items that I collect, I am as selective with those that I keep around.  Even if the price of admission for my playthings is my complete indifference, they must still have some worth.  I am indifferent toward what makes them human; their hopes, dreams, thoughts, and desires mean little to me.  However, I am invested in what benefit they bring me.  As long as they recognize that our relationship is about me, and not about them, they can stay.  They must play the role of a trusted instrument: available to play but otherwise locked away safely without a second thought.

Indifference may not be quite the right word.  It is more total than that.  My concern for another’s existence in the absence of my own is that of all-consuming apathy.  Maybe it is the result of a twisted upbringing or maybe my genetic predisposition comes into play, but none can hope to have self-evident value in my eyes.  I would be unconcerned about the fate of the elephant that gifted me an ivory box, only that its life had meaning through the gift that it gave me: possession.  Similarly, there is no hope for those that enter my life; my apathy will consume them.

However, just as my apathy consumes those around me, it consumes me as well in its firestorm.  I know that I am destined to remain lonely and that I seek something that does not exist.  I evaluate those around me for shared interests, but nothing more.  Shared time on shared activities alleviates the boredom even if I cherish not the person I spend such time with.  I know that one day I will share my bed with another slab of meat and that I will feed, but eventually it will bleed dry and any temporary satisfaction will be lost.  I will hunger again.  I’ll never truly eat, however.

I asked my therapist what differentiates me from those psychopaths that can at least appreciate others on some level beyond that of possession.  She responded by way of contrast.  My upbringing was relatively scarred with abusive and negligence running throughout its veins.  A childhood like James Fallon’s, author of The Psychopath Inside, was stable.  In many ways, childhood is a trigger for a gun formed from genetic predisposition.  A peaceful and loving childhood could result in the trigger being capped and could teach one to be able to attach to others.  A chaotic childhood can certainly do the opposite.  I would be interested in hearing from my readers how much the accounts in this post resonate and comparing that to the childhoods that were had.  Do you seek out trophies like I do, ivory boxes to stare at and to hold, or do you forge your own relationships with an actual ability to value the intangibles of another living thing?

What Lurks Behind the Psychopath's Mask?
Psychopathy and Attachment Disorders?


  1. says

    I am incapable of forming any bond or attachment with anyone I use people and when i’m bored i discard them go on to another project, sometimes i enjoy the thrill of the chase but when i do acquire them they mean nothing to me excitement goes away.I have no real friends and my social relationships never last long i actually enjoy sabotaging them,seeing how much i can press people’s buttons. It’s entertaining how people become defenseless by emotions and pity.
    I had a normal upbringing no abuse but i always felt indifferent to people,events around me always knew i was ‘special’ . I really do wonder what romance is though i cannot stand affection and really don’t believe love is on the cards for me still curious …

    • MA32 says

      Parents that spoil their kids, for instance are creating little narcissists that one day will become adult narcissists. Not saying that’s what happened though (I don’t know you), just that abuse or neglect aren’t the only factors.

      • says

        I wasn’t spoiled I didn’t have much growing up and still can’t say that i do right now but you are right abuse and neglect aren’t the only factor sometimes it’s just nature. I do wonder what real human bonds feel like because i’ve never felt it myself

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