Character-impaired folks inevitably use and abuse others. And the more they lack conscience and empathy, the more seriously they’re likely to use and abuse.
There’s been a lot of media hype about psychopaths in recent weeks. But true psychopaths are neither as common nor as easy to identify as some in the popular media would have you believe. You have to really understand those devoid of empathy, remorse, and conscience in order to minimize the risk of victimization.
Assertive behavior is a key element of healthy, independent, adult functioning. But because asserting oneself is a form of “fighting” for one’s legitimate needs, it’s easy to get confused about the difference between aggressive and assertive behavior.