Should one reveal to another person their ASPD and / or psychopathy? How would one even do that? Before the reader’s eyes roll out of their head, I ask them to hear me out. I believe that one of the keys to mitigating the negative consequences of these disorders is to be open and authentic regarding them. For the Machiavellian reader, this may seem counter-productive as all advantage is lost when making such a revelation. However, if a disorder isn’t “working” for you, then there is little choice.
For many with ASPD and / or psychopathy, they believe that the disorder brings only advantage. Maybe for them, it does. It doesn’t for me, however. I’ve burned too many bridges and have burned myself in a near-fatal fashion due to my impulsivity and recklessness. For me, the choice is painfully clear: I must mitigate the self-destructive tendencies of the disorder. To do this, I choose transparency as a means of placing a check on my own behavior. Raising the stakes to the ultimate level works for me. I’m not necessarily advocating this for everyone, but I think careful consideration of the possible benefits should be had.
This brings us back to the second question that I opened this post with. How would a person “come out” as antisocial or psychopathic? The key, as with any “dark” human condition is in the phrasing. The manner, should the individual choose this route, of course is personal. My tactic is to explain it in terms of an affective empathy deficit along with a general overview of the neurological differences that are all but given in the psychopathic brain with respect to the neurotypical brain. While this approach may be somewhat manipulative (as it attempts to shield another from the “warts” of the conditions), I’ve had good success with this approach. Of course, I make such a revelation known only on a need to know basis as with my closest acquaintances.
The greatest check on self-destructive behavior is transparency. As with the alcoholic that makes their status known to avoid temptation, the antisocial can do the same – if they wish – to try and head off the self-destructive nature of the disorder. Others may see such as noble, even if the reasons are certainly self-serving. The words and actions chosen for such a revelation mean all the difference in the world, however. By phrasing the disorder in a sympathetic way, the antisocial can play on the empathy of those around him to ensure success. Of course, all of this is up to you. Many of my readers see no problem with their disorder. And, that’s fine. I simply know the losses I’ve felt at the hands of my own disorder and I reject any attempt at self-sabotage.