If any of you have ever tried to understand the criminal mind, you may find this interesting. After I realized that Nick could possibly be a serial killer, I wanted to find out whether or not he actually fit the psychological profile of a serial killer. The following description of a Psychopath was taken from Wikipedia and, in my opinion, fits Nick on every point.
The prototypical psychopath has deficits or deviances in several areas:
Interpersonal relationships, emotion, and self-control. Psychopaths lack a sense of guilt or remorse for any harm they may have caused others, instead rationalizing the behavior, blaming someone else, or denying it outright. Psychopaths also lack empathy toward others in general, resulting in tactlessness, insensitivity, and contemptuousness. All of this belies their tendency to make a good, likable first impression. Psychopaths have a superficial charm about them, enabled by their low self-consciousness, a willingness to say anything without concern for accuracy or truth. This extends into their pathological lying and willingness to con and manipulate others for personal gain or amusement. The prototypical psychopath’s emotions are described as a shallow affect, meaning their overall way of relating is characterized by mere display of friendliness and other emotions for personal gain; the displayed emotion need not correlate with felt emotion, in other words, shallow affect also describes the psychopath’s tendency for genuine emotion to be short lived and egocentric with an overall cold demeanor, their behavior is impulsive and irresponsible, often failing to keep a job or defaulting on debts.
Since psychopaths cause harm through their actions, it is assumed that they are not emotionally attached to the people they harm; however, according to the PCL-R checklist, psychopaths are also careless in the way they treat themselves. They frequently fail to alter their behavior in a way that would prevent them from enduring future discomfort. Dr. Joseph Newman contends that the behavior displayed by psychopaths is the result of “an inability to process contextual cures.”
It is thought that any emotions which the primary psychopath exhibits are the fruits of watching and mimicking other people’s emotions. They show poor impulse control and low tolerance for frustration and aggression. They have no empathy, remorse, anxiety or guilt in relation to their behavior. In short, they truly are devoid of conscience. However, they understand that society expects them to behave in a conscientious manner, and therefore they mimic this behavior when it suits their needs.
Most studies of psychopaths have taken place among prison populations. This remains a limitation on its applicability to a general population but that has not prevented fiction writers from popularizing psychopaths in the movies.
Cleckley thus defined psychopath:
1. Superficial charm and above average intelligence.
2. Absence of delusions and other signs of irrational thinking.
3. Absence of nervousness or neurotic manifestations.
5. Untruthfulness and insincerity.
6. Lack of remorse or shame.
7. Antisocial behavior without apparent compunction.
8. Poor judgment and failure to learn from experience
9. Pathological egocentricity and incapacity to love.
10. General poverty in major affective reactions.
11. Specific lose of insight.
12. Unresponsiveness in general interpersonal relations.
13. Fantastic and uninviting behavior with drink and sometimes without.
14. Suicide threats rarely carried out.
15. Sex life impersonal, trivial and poorly integrated
16. Failure to follow any life plan.
It has been shown that punishment and behavior modification techniques do not improve the behavior of a psychopath. They have been regularly observed to respond to both by becoming more cunning and hiding their behavior better. It has been suggested that traditional, therapeutic approaches actually make them, if not worse, then far more adept at manipulating others and concealing their behavior. They are generally considered to be not only incurable but also untreatable.
Psychopaths also have a markedly distorted sense of the potential consequences of their actions, not only for others, but also for themselves. They do not, for example, deeply recognize the risk of being caught, disbelieved or injured as a result of their behavior.
Children showing strong psychopathic precursors often appear immune to punishment; nothing seems to modify their undesirable behavior. Consequently parents usually give up and the behavior worsens.
The following childhood indicators are to be interpreted not as to the type of behavior, but as to its relentless and unvarying occurrence. Not all must be present concurrently, but at least a number of them need to be present over a period of years:
1. An extended period of bedwetting past the preschool years that is not due to any medical problem.
2. Cruelty to animals beyond an angry outburst.
3. Fire setting and other vandalism. Not to be confused with playing with matches, which is not uncommon for preschoolers. This is the deliberate setting of destructive fires with utter disregard for the property and lives of others.
4. Lying, often without discernible objectives, extending beyond a child’s normal impulse to not be punished. Lies are so extensive that it is often impossible to know lies from truth.
5. Theft and Truancy.
6. Aggression to peers, not necessarily physical, which can include getting others into trouble or a campaign of psychological torment.
The three indicators – bedwetting, cruelty to animals and fire starting – known as the MacDonald triad, were first described by J.M. MacDonald as indicators of psychopathy. Through the relevance of these indicators to serial murder etiology has since been called into question, they are considered relevant to psychopathy.
I have been studying psychopaths for a while now and have come up with my own traits that don't completly agree with the DSM or mainstream psychology.If any of you have ever tried to understand the criminal mind, you may find this interesting. After I realized that Nick could possibly be a serial killer, I wanted to find out whether or not he actually fit the psychological profile of a serial killer. The following description of a Psychopath was taken from Wikipedia and, in my opinion, fits Nick on every point.
Being a psycopath does not mean a person is a serial killer or killed someone, and being a serial killer or having killed someone doesn't make a person a psychopath. All psychopaths enjoy hurting other people in some way whether it is physically, emotionally, psychologically, or financially. Hurting someone is a sign of power. Psychopaths need to feel powerful.