To care enough about the welfare of others to want to work on their behalf requires empathy, and is the essence of genuine love. Disturbed characters lack the capacity to love in this way because they lack empathy, and the warning signs are always in the attitudes they display toward accepting obligation.
Learning to be responsible is largely a matter of accepting burdens for the greater good, and folks lacking in empathy rarely have the motivation to bear such burdens. The willingness to do so can only arise out of love, which is why a person’s incapacity to genuinely love is always reflected in their shirking of responsibility.
Neurotics want to do the right thing and for things to go well as a result. They take it hard and are perhaps too quick to engage in self-reproach when things go wrong. Disordered characters, on the other hand, tend to take adversity in stride and blame everyone and everything else when bad things happen, even when those things really stem from their own actions.
Subscribing to traditional beliefs about human nature actually played a large role in how victims were lured into and subsequently remained in abusive relationships.
People often get manipulated because they misjudge the character of their manipulator. We have a tendency to want to see everyone else as basically pretty much like us. We want to think that they think the same way, care about the same things, and feel the same way we do. But individuals with disturbed characters … Continue reading Neurotic vs. Character Disorder? Criterion Three – Guilt
Neurotics have well-developed and overactive consciences (i.e. superegos), whereas disordered characters have consciences that are under-developed and impaired. Neurotics have a huge sense of right and wrong and always want to do the right thing. They often set standards for themselves that are so high they’re virtually impossible to meet, causing themselves a significant amount of … Continue reading Neurotic vs. Character Disorder? Criterion Two – Conscience