…And Her Mouth was Sewn Shut

I dislike self-diagnosing individuals. There is little to gain when embarking on a dangerous journey without a guide.  However, I hate even more those laypeople that diagnose others with personality disorders.  Often, such people are trying to equate their disdain for an individual with a viable and biological or environmental explanation.  They cannot accept that others may be defective individuals on their own.  And, ultimately, they deny the darkness that lives within each and every human being – most importantly, the darkness that lives within themselves.  How many times have we heard that Donald Trump is a narcissist and Hilary Clinton a psychopath?  How many people that know better are spreading such potential misinformation based on their own ignorance and prejudices?  We must reject such banter.  We must sew their mouths shut.

One cannot call for an educated and non-judgmental discourse regarding mental illness if they are the first to look into another’s eyes and proclaim that the devil lives inside.  I immediately think of the phony prophets of the unknown gods that convince people to speak in tongues and exorcise unnamed demons.  An enlightened society rejects that nonsense, but seemingly gives a free pass to those that would convince another of possession.  Yes, I must concede, it is possible that such accusations may be spot on.  However, it is the responsibility and jurisdiction of professionals to identify such problematic personalities and convey mitigation plans to the afflicted.  This responsibility belongs to the layperson no more than the blindborn may own color.

Many write to me to see if I believe them to be antisocial and/or psychopathic.  My answer is always the same.  Such is the one question that I refuse to answer of my readers.  If I were to tell another my interpretation of truth, I rob them of their own journey to discover actual truth.  My eyes are not perfect and I would rather that crows pick them out of their sockets than for them to coerce another into the land of fiction.  We owe it to ourselves to be honest with ourselves, and we owe it to those around us to be honest with them.  Such honesty often results in silence.  Honesty requires fact.  And, honesty often means saying that we do not know the physical form of those shadows that dance before us.  Let us demand as much from ourselves and others.  Let us call for the needle and thread and sew shut the mouths of those that claim uncertainty as truth.

The Line Between Freedom and Atimia


  1. Anon says

    I understand the desire to conflate mental illness with personality disorder and to stake a claim to victimhood, but the fact remains that these are two distinctly separate concepts.

    The personality-disordered are NOT mentally ill. They have the ability to reason and to distinguish right from wrong…..to choose how to behave.

    And on the subject of diagnosis, there is again a difference between observing that a particular individual consistently displays patterns of behaviors over time which find their echo in the universally-accepted checklists used to evaluate disordered behavior.

    I dislike any argument which seeks to mute an individual’s right to express an opinion – informed or otherwise. The established convention is that those of opposing views debate their case in turn.

    So….reasons why Clinton and/or Trump are NOT personality disordered. Anyone?

    • Jessica Kelly says

      Personality disorders are often rooted in physiological structures which renders any difference between them and other mental illnesses moot.

    • Jessica Kelly says

      As for the second part of your statement, a person can make any proposition that they can come up. I trust that an intellectual will reject any claims made in the absence of both measurable evidence and authority to interpret such evidence.

      This isn’t sixth grade biology where people measure pea pods and come up with theories of the universe. These are real people that are in the crosshairs and the fallout from misguided opinions directly affects those that actually *do* fall under the umbrella of mental illness., regardless of the psychological or psychiatric status of the original individual.

    • FNP says

      If one is capable of distinguishing right from wrong, but has no moral compass to tell them which is right and which is wrong, doesn’t that effectively mean that they don’t distinguish between right and wrong, and simply act according to what they want to do?

  2. Anonymous says

    Current thinking is that personality disorders are genetically inherited. It’s true that psychopathy is often co-morbid with mental illness, such as bi-polar. Usually treatable with medication, but the psychopathy still remains. The personality disorder and the mental illness (where one exists) are entirely separate conditions.

    Equally, no-one needs a degree in near-biology or psychology to understand that any individual consistently evidencing 5 or more behavioural criteria on the Hare Checklist is probably a psychopath.

    No-one would seriously attempt to stigmatise anyone recognising an alligator or a lion as such and labelling them as predators. Human predators, such as psychopaths, are dangerous to be around and to attempt to stigmatise those who have experienced their behaviors at first hand and to refuse them the right to speak their truth is……well……psychopathic

    • FNP says

      You seriously think that someone matching 5 factors is a psychopath? There’s 20 factors on that list, and you need to have 30/40 to be psychopathic.

      • Onidandal says

        I do not believe that a layperson could distinguish more than 5 without assistance. I thought of psychopaths as people who would only do physical harm, at one point, only to find that it bores the more intelligent ones. Emotional and fallacious manipulation seem to be the most fun. A layperson who survives being the target of a psychopath might be able to list off 10 behaviors, thus making their judgement more accurate. No layperson could be accurate enough without error, though. This is when you assume the worst, once enough criteria are met for you to assume their mental state. It is for no purpose other than survival for some, while for others it may actually be shitslinging. It is the same principle, though, when people assume the worst out of certain demographics that they are opposed to. However, you have a lot more factors to consider when you evaluate someone’s mental state than simply skin color or genetalia. I will conclude that while, yes, it is wrong to diagnose someone without the knowledge required to make an accurate diagnosis, it is an important part of human nature for our survival as individuals to assume the worst if enough criteria in our perspective are fulfilled.

          • Onidandal says

            Nope! I understand where you may have gotten the idea when you take into account the language used, but this is simply a subconscious bias on my part that I didn’t consider. I was simply stating that it’s not unreasonable as a human to be cautious when enough warning is given that they could be in danger, emotional or physical. Psychopaths have been shown to disregard other people, even if not being malicious, and thus cause harm regardless of intent. Thus, ‘warning sign’ is accurate from the perspective of a neurotypical. I will admit that public perception has been skewed to view them as malicious, and experiences can make them seem so as well. I’d suggest ways to assist psychopaths who wish to feel anything but dull without the risk of jailtime, and to create an understanding that psychopaths are amoral from the nature of a lack of empathy. I may also suggest finding a medium through which the most accurate description of each party can be given. The same laws must apply to all, because psychopathy cannot be controlled. My main request is as much mutual understanding as possible.

    • itaintlikethat says

      lol, you do realise that 5/40 on the PCL-R is what a regular non criminal person usually gets right? So you’re saying that they’re ordinary people.

  3. Anonymous says

    Clinical diagnosis for psychopathy, using the Hare checklist is 25 points in Europe, 30 points in the US, with 0-2 points per trait. The average person scores around 5 points.

    And I stand corrected….All 7 – not 5 – of the following traits are required, per DSM-V

    1. Failure to conform to social norms with respect to lawful behaviors

    2. Deceitfulness (1b, ANT—Deceitfulness)

    3. Impulsivity or failure to plan ahead (2b, DIS—Impulsivity)

    4. Irritability and aggressiveness (1d, NEGAFF—Hostility)

    5. Reckless disregard for safety of self or others (2c, DIS—Risk Taking) 6. Consistent irresponsibility (2a, DIS—Irresponsibility)

    7. Lack of remorse (1c, ANT—Callousness)

  4. Anonymous says

    Agreed, however DSM-V still classifies it within ASPD. There is still no separate classification, although psychopathic personality disorder remains a diagnosis in some countries. As I’m sure you know.

    • FNP says

      Actually, DSM-V doesn’t list psychopathy anywhere in its pages. This is mainly because the APA doesn’t want to pay Hare for the use of his PCL-R.

      • MA32 says

        It mentions it but this anon is still wrong because someone can be assesssed as a psychopath and never be Diagnosed with aspd before (although I don’t think that’s very common). What I’m trying to ilustrate is that they’re two separate things, so that’s for aspd, not psychopathy.

      • MMS says

        Just wondering, FNP, since you read/commented for a considerable time, do you miss your engagement – and did you develop any kind of ‘connection’ to this site? I ask because as a psychopath your response would be of interest.

  5. MA32 says

    Jessica, you said you scored 31 on the pcl-r, but I got the impression you said it was 32. Were you assessed again or I don’t remember it correctly? It was while ago.

  6. MA32 says

    As you were talking about self-love on twitter and said it could serve as an excuse for not doing better, but I think it will be less prone to happen if you can accept your own flaws along with self-love and healthy self-love is actually all about thinking well about yourself but without loosing perspective on reality and more importantly, being abble to take criticism. I believe you had high but defensive self-love, which makes it hard to achieve and that’s why you think like this.

  7. Anonymous says

    LOL….how very black and white.

    Meanwhile, back in the shades of grey offered by DSM-V, it seems that there is an operable calibration of psychopathy, within the overall definition of Antisocial Personality Disorder/Psychopathy (their amalgamation, not mine).

    Characterizing psychopathy using DSM-5 personality traits.

    Strickland CM1, Drislane LE, Lucy M, Krueger RF, Patrick CJ.

    Author information
    Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL 32306, USA.


    Despite its importance historically and contemporarily, psychopathy is not recognized in the current Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition, Text Revised (DSM-IV-TR).

    Its closest counterpart, antisocial personality disorder, includes strong representation of behavioral deviance symptoms but weak representation of affective-interpersonal features considered central to psychopathy.

    The current study evaluated the extent to which psychopathy and its distinctive facets, indexed by the Triarchic Psychopathy Measure, can be assessed effectively using traits from the dimensional model of personality pathology developed for DSM-5, operationalized by the Personality Inventory for DSM-5 (PID-5).

    Results indicate that (a) facets of psychopathy entailing impulsive externalization and callous aggression are well-represented by traits from the PID-5 considered relevant to antisocial personality disorder, and (b) the boldness facet of psychopathy can be effectively captured using additional PID-5 traits.

    These findings provide evidence that the dimensional model of personality pathology embodied in the PID-5 provides effective trait-based coverage of psychopathy and its facets.

    • MA32 says

      This isn’t the same you were saying. And people are still diagnosed with aspd (using the criteria you stated) and not assessed psychopathic.

    • Jessica Kelly says

      At the end of the day, the question is still whether we gain information with the model of psychopathy. If I recall correctly, the model the DSM presents does not take into account facets such as ‘lack of realistic, long-term goals’ or ‘parasitic lifestyle’ among others. If treatment options are limited for those on the extreme end of the antisocial spectrum, does any of this matter, or are the recorded neurophysiological differences in those classified as psychopaths as compared to vanilla ASPD not worth exploring, among other questions. We see, without question, warring camps that are often pushing ideological differences rather than getting at the root of why certain individuals behave differently than others.

  8. Anonymous says


    It’s a continuation of the subject: ASPD being the DSM-V classified disorder, with psychopathy considered to be at the far end of the ASPD continuum, as you no doubt know. I make no comment whether that is correct or not – it’s how it is. In some countries, psychopathic personality disorder remains distinct from ASPD and will be diagnosed as such….in others, the diagnosis will be ASPD and then psychopathy. DSM V uses the PID personality inventory which includes all key psychopathic traits, so accurate diagnoses should be more easily achievable.


    I don’t know that information is necessarily gained with the model used in DSM V, although it offers better, more detailed diagnostic criteria than DSM-IV so perhaps information is communicated in a more straightforward way and is therefore more accessible.

    I agree that there are warring camps pushing ideological differences which affect both classification and diagnosis of psychopathy. The net effect has been to obscure and confuse, but DSM-V seems to me to offer more clarity and detail than DSM-IV did, so perhaps things are moving in the right direction.

  9. james says

    This is a fight you can not win. At least, not the way the game is being played. Being outed as a psychopath is bad for your well-being. While there is no difference in the tendency to commit crimes, the certified psychopath will always get the higher disproportionate sentence.
    It is my opinion that the blame lays squarely on the psychologists and the psychiatrists. These lizards in human suits have given us various mental modules that have resulted in witch hunts going on all over the place. You no longer have tough kids, tough guys, or tough women who should be put to work where their skills would be useful, you only have a big happy village and everyone who doesn’t like to be part of the primordial swamp of mediocre emotional nonsense crap can rot in hell, or for that matter, prison.
    I will not say that psychopathy does not exist, or that they are evil or not. Psychopathy has nothing to do with good or evil, it has to do with someone’s emotional make up.Trying to say those with a tough emotional make up should be put to prison while leaving those with a weak emotional constitution to walk free with lower sentences is a cruel joke on the justice system, at the hands of the weak people, at the expense of those with a stronger emotional make up. A crime is a crime. The source of this state of affairs lies in Psychology and Psychiatry.

    The last time I checked, you still have high crime areas in Chicago and Washington DC and a bunch of other places. It’s not like they have eliminated all the criminals who are terrorizing the neighborhoods. It’s not like life is so easy people choose to commit crimes because it is the most thrilling thing to do. It is easy to get robbed downtown in a major city at night, yet I am supposed to be more worried about the guy that I work with, who does not emotionally connect with me, and has absolutely no need to, considering we have absolutely nothing in common, and there is nothing I would want to do with that person.

    This is the biggest bunk nonsense I have seen in a long time. And you have the psychologist and the psychiatrists to thank for that state of affairs. Remove these dumb retards from the mental health field, and watch how quickly people will start to get along together again.

    People are not a bunch of mental diseases or personality defects. People are hardly ever alike. It is stupid to think they are or to insist that they should think alike and anyone who tries to enforce that truism has, in his/her agenda, an intention to enslave everybody into conformity.

    • FNP says

      You talk a big game, but you’ve clearly never encountered any psychopaths before.

      There is a very big difference between your standard crime and the average crimes a psychopath commits. Psychopaths generally take pleasure in hurting other people, whereas normal criminals typically commit crimes for materialistic reasons instead of gratification.

  10. james says

    Whatever the scope of crimes it is, it pales in comparison with the sheer number of crimes committed by the rest.
    Most of this stuff about psychopaths is for the most part sensationalism and I think it distracts from the business of living.
    Why embrace a viewpoint that renders you less capable? It’s very untrue to say n NT does not seek to harm others. They just rationalize the reasons.
    An NT categorizes people the same way, while devaluing themselves in the process. God have mercy on anyone who devalues themselves-you can bet the devil won’t.
    The problem with the acts that are frowned upon are their consequences, not the reasons for making them.
    Witch hunts and persecution of those who are different is a game as old as man himself. There is no need for that same-old.
    In the scheme of things, psychopathy is not what most think it is, and of itself, does not have a big impact than would be had if the standard investigative and justice processes available today were actually used as opposed to finding an excuse for a criminal act.

    • FNP says

      Like I said, you’ve clearly never encountered any violent psychopaths in the real world. There’s a very good reason people are terrified of us, and it’s not because of witch hunts or persecution.

      You don’t really seem to understand the fact that there doesn’t have to be any reason to commit violent crimes as psychopaths. Sure, the low-IQ psychopaths do armed robbery and such because they’re incapable of thinking big. But for those of us with sufficient IQ, the biggest reason to commit violent crime is typically “Why not?”.

      Committing violent crimes is one of the major outlets for psychopathic ennui, as well. Unless you’re a psychopath, you’ve never experienced the complete and utterly pervasive boredom that accompanies every interest and hobby we pick up. As a result, doing anything remotely exciting becomes more and more challenging.

      There’s also the fact that hurting other people is as easy as stepping on insects to any psychopath. You’re blatantly ignoring the fact that your whole idea of morality exists only if you believe that everyone is inherently moral or immoral. Psychopaths, myself included are amoral, because morals only exist to constrain us.

  11. james says

    Going on a tangent about psychopathy ignores the fact that in the final analysis, a crime is simply that, a crime. It ignores that one should be innocent until proven guilty. You could argue the reasons till hell freezes over, but it does not change the incidental fact.
    Psychopathy, as it is used, attempts to change the incidental fact without objective evidence.
    It also allows penalties to be applied, again without any objective evidence.
    I, for one wonders why it is so important to be concerned with other people’s thoughts, when I have my own life and affairs to deal with.
    If it is your morbid dream to wake up in a nightmarish world like that of “Minority Report” so you can feel good about your mental gymnastics, be my guest.
    No man should co-operate with one who tries to enslave or lessen his personal strength in any way

    • FNP says

      You really do have a problem with understanding that in the real world, psychopaths are a very real thing.

      You keep assuming my dreams are some kind of robocop world without realizing that it’s more like Germany circa 1936.

  12. j says

    This is amusing in the extreme. I seriously do wonder how many psychopaths there are here. My guess is, not that many. But there are a lot of pretend ones. It has become the vogue to have ‘dark triad traits’.
    There are consequences that can be predicted by looking at emotional situational and envitlronmental landscape.
    Have fun being a psychopath. Lets see how wonderful this turns out for you ‘great’ operators.

    • FNP says

      The number of actual psychopaths that visit this site fairly regularly and comment (or post the articles) is somewhere between 2 and 4.

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