As M. E. Thomas says of her fellow sociopaths, we are your neighbors, co-workers, and quite possibly the people closest to you: lovers, family, friends. Our risk-seeking behavior and general fearlessness are thrilling, our glibness and charm alluring. Our often quick wit and outside-the-box thinking make us appear intelligent - even brilliant. We climb the corporate ladder faster than the rest, and appear to have limitless self-confidence.... Who are we? We are highly successful, non-criminal sociopaths and we comprise 4% of the American population (that's 1 in 25 people!).
Confessions of a Sociopath takes listeners on a journey into the mind of a sociopath, revealing what makes the tick and what that means for the rest of humanity. Written from the point of view of a diagnosed sociopath, it unveils these men and women who are "hiding in plain sight" for the very first time.
Confessions of a Sociopath is part confessional memoir, part primer for the wary. Drawn from Thomas' own experiences; her popular blog, Sociopathworld.com; and current and historical scientific literature, it reveals just how different - and yet often very similar - sociopaths are from the rest of the world. The book confirms suspicions and debunks myths about sociopathy and is both the memoir of a high-functioning, law-abiding (well, mostly) sociopath and a roadmap - right from the source - for dealing with the sociopath in your life, be it a boss, sibling, parent, spouse, child, neighbor, colleague or friend.
As Thomas argues, while sociopaths aren't like everyone else, and it's true some of them are incredibly dangerous, they are not inherently evil. In fact, they're potentially more productive and useful to society than neurotypicals or "empaths", as they fondly like to call "normal" people. Confessions of a Sociopath demystifyies sociopathic behavior and provides listeners with greater insight on how to respond or react to protect themselves, live among sociopaths without becoming victims, and even beat sociopaths at their own game, through a bit of empathetic cunning and manipulation.
©2013 M. E. Thomas (P)2013 Random House Audio
Work in the tech industry. I like nonfiction.
Lots of contradictions. I think she thinks it would be cool to be a sociopath, rather than is one. A lot of what she describes is a result of living in the Mormon culture.
More narcissistic than anything else.
Unsure - don't know if she represents the author's voice.
3/5 of it is repeat.
This book seems less like a nonfiction account of someone's life and more like a movie script. Listen to it high and then it will become more interesting. I like the book on the whole, but I don't believe the author is a sociopath.
I don't doubt the author is a sociopath, and that many of her claims are perfectly reasonable. My issue with this book is the rambling and less than interesting way that the author goes about detailing her sociopathy.
I was intrigued by the portrayl of life through the eyes of somebody who likely sees the world very differently than I do. Tricky to do, and I should have been suspicious, but in any case, I was interested. Unfortunatley I don't believe the author pulls it off. I like the idea that a book like this one adds something to my world view - what I found instead, was hours of rambling, repetive and unininsigtful person recountings of life events that are told impersonally and in my opinion, poorly. That aside, by the end of the book, not only did I feel that the author had simply been repeating herself over and over again, but the random and unorganized way in which the account took place made it hard for me to feel as though any sort of coherent backbone of the book ever solidified. By the end, I don't feel that my worldview has changed or I am in any way a more enlightened person.
While I can't claim to like the author or relate to her, her alienness never made itself all that apparent to me. Maybe this was her intention all along, but in my opinion, it makes the enitre book seem a little unnecessary. And that aside, I don't really enjoy the idea that by the authors own reasoning, stated again and again in the pages of this book, aren't to make you understand sociopathy (by definition, she really doesn't care what you think), but simply to take your money. My advice: Spend it elsewhere.
This book was not what I expected, but I enjoyed it nonetheless. I expected the author to tell stories of her sociopathic antics in essay format (examples of how she "ruined" people). She does include stories, but they are in no particular order and are mixed with her self indulgent delusions about herself and life in general. Her narcissistic delusions could be left out as they detract creditability. She frequently contradicts herself: she is capable of learning from her own mistakes, however she cannot use knifes because she was not able to teach herself to be careful with them; she frequently comments on her beauty, but also how plain she looks; she is a good lawyer, but she was fired from her law firm for under preforming, just to list some of the most obvious.
Mental disorders are one of my favorite topics, so a first person account was extremely intriguing to me. In all honesty, I would have completed this book regardless of how narcissistic the author was. I would recommend this book to anyone fascinated by mental disorders who want to learn more and can tolerate some nauseating self absorption in the process.
I Loved the contradictions and internal disconnect -- I've rarely seen the concept of a person without empathy more clearly acted out. For someone to express that they are broken, abused and stunted while at the same time crowing that they are the apex and possibly an improved part of the human condition -- yes, that's these people at their most two dimensional. What I liked least was the lingering feeling of pity. The mood brought on by reading hung on after like a bad smell.
The concepts were overexplained and the book could have gotten in and out in a much shorter time.
Avid general reader with a fondness for British and Irish Writers and world history.
The 'author' has a fixation on being abnormal, but her 'diagnosis' is unlikely and rather pathetic. A drama queen, indeed, and self- aggrandizing as befits a very immature personality. If anything she says about herself is true, then she could have done better in terms of authoring a book.
The narrative is actually quite boring and the tale, itself is poorly organized. Glib quotes from various psychologists and psychiatrists. Equally glib injection of legal terms
She probably has a personality disorder but not the one she would like to have.. Efforts to shock do not make a sociopath.
A waste of time and not an iota of value to the study of sociopathy.
It's one of the best I've read so far. I don't understand what people are talking about when they say that it's "poorly-written". Even if it were, and I'm just not seeing it, the points still come across well. I also related to the author more than I thought I would, which was a bit of a shock. I'm probably not a sociopath, but I do think I have some sociopathic tendencies that are overshadowed by my seemingly-benevolent behavior.
I have nothing to compare it to.
I bit monotone in some areas, but very appropriate. I'd rather her straight-forward performance than something cheesy or over-the-top.
The amount of time the author spent analyzing herself and how this is communicated to the reader/listener.
The proper conveyance of this mental type. That it focuses on how these individuals are non-violent and not serial killers but rather highly successful individuals.
The positive benefits of a female reader in revealing these topics, less overwhelming then a male.
No. I listened well the first time. Unless I can convince the three 20-twentysomething sons to listen if I listened with them.
Absolutely no other than I can think of, except maybe Bloodletters and Bad Men; the characters, not the presentation style.
Bernadette totally deadpanned the entire performance. She came across as the emotion-starved, bored personality she was emulating. BRAVO!!!!! Bernadette. I didn't like you either! (I kept thinking to myself, is the AUTHOR reading this?) I've since separated the two of you. Whew. Got sucked in there!
No. I did it in about 4 sittings, I do electronic circuit board work. Perfect for listening to Audible.
Mothers: Make your children read or listen to this book. Mandatory reading. Get past the inconsistencies (we are talking a sociopath here, remember! Jodi Arias: Explained!) and gather the information offered about spotting these functional (and especially the nonfunctional) sociopaths. The antennae can only go up if they've been programmed. Education of our children is the best defense.
The author said it best: Mormon boys are especially easy to fool.
Just ask Travis Alexander.
Yes, I have to agree this story was written by a highly intelligent manipulative sociopath. She pretty much leads us to believe that she is the new normal, I would almost have to agree, not for sure if it genetic as she suggests or just out necessity to survive in the American way of life. We have pretty much honored the sociopath through movies, novels and well fame and fortune if you can steal enough without getting caught.
I can't think of fortune befalling anyone that does something empathetic.
This book will forever give me pause when I am dealing with psychopathic people, I will now know they would just as soon have me for breakfast as talk to me. I knew before they did not care about what I was saying, but I did not know they were thinking about eating me during the conversation.
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