It’s been a while since I’ve plugged my book, A Tale of Two Masks. I originally wrote the book back in late 2013, but didn’t make it available to retailers until late 2015. The reviews have been great. I bring this up because many ask me why I was so brave (or foolish) to not write under a pseudonym. I think the reasons are self-evident. A work is only as strong as the author’s willingness to let it breathe and stand on its own. Anyone who writes about mental illness under a pseudonym is inherently weakening their own words. How can a story be related to if one can’t put a person with the words? Also, the lack of a pseudonym – combined with a foreword by the therapist I work with – means that my words can legitimacy. Finally, it is important to instill courage for the reader – though I suspect and realize that the benefits of “coming out” as antisocial and/or psychopathic are limited – so that they may choose their own course when dealing with what to share with others.
Far too often, we hear of accounts of antisocial personalities from those that seek to demonize us. While it is wise that people use an abundance of caution when dealing with the antisocial – and the psychopath in particular – it is not fair to have such a one-sided conversation. If I were to use a pseudonym, I would be contributing to that imbalance because there is a propensity to discount my words, and thus the perspective of a legitimate antisocial. Sure, I have those that believe me to be a fraud, but by this point I hope that my consistency and anecdotes have convinced the average reader that I am for real. The problem that anonymous writers run into is that they are unwilling to go beyond anecdotes and paint a picture in black and white rather than in color. They are unwilling to put a face with their work. Meanwhile, I have given several interviews, backed by the accounts of my therapist, to gain the trust of the reader: something anonymous writers cannot claim.
As important, it is vital to realize that the overwhelming majority of “successful” antisocials are closeted. They have to contort with those around them and their proclivities for lying must extend to covering their own tracks with those that may not need to be treated with kid gloves. I recognize that the vast majority of readers are not in a position to reveal their true selves to those around them. However, I have heard from some that I have helped them frame a conversation should they choose to do so. We need voices that are willing to instill such tenets into their audience. While it should be obvious that the number of people that can openly speak on the subject are slim, this should not imply that we should go completely without. It is not my place to be anything but one vantage point regarding an exceptionally complicated set of disorders. However, that account must exist so that others – if they choose – can follow in my footsteps.
I encourage everyone that follows my blog to pick up a copy of the book if they can. I’m not in it for the money, but it does contain a narrative that goes well beyond what I write here on this blog. I think that the antisocial, psychopath, and/or neurotypical can all find something of use in that work. I may not be anything but a talkbox, but I would like to serve as a source of informal knowledge in a world that desperately needs it.