Sociopathic parents exist and can cause great harm to their children through both emotional and physical abuse, even to the point of producing sociopathic children. In addition, co-parenting with a sociopath can be very troubling.
A sociopath is a man or a woman who cares only about him/herself (What Is A Sociopathic Person Like?). All the world is his stage, and all the people merely his puppets on a string. He is a social predator in all aspects of his life, including parenthood; he’s a sociopathic parent.
Traits of Sociopathic Parents
At the most basic level, sociopathic parents aren’t warm and fuzzy. Cold, distant, and unwelcoming, he provides neither comfort nor affection. James Fallon, a neurobiologist who studies the brains of sociopaths and happens to be one himself, is one of the rare sociopaths who has sustained a marriage over time and helped raise children. He describes his feelings toward his children as indifferent, “[d]ominated less by warmth than by entertainment and intellectual interest.”
By sociopathic standards, Fallon is “loving parent of the year”. Other sociopath parents aren’t so kind and generous. The only true feeling sociopath parents have is anger, and they typically express it loudly and physically (Do Sociopaths Cry or Even Have Feelings?). Because the expressed anger is out of proportion to whatever induced it, children are left hurt, confused, and with a sense that the world is unpredictable, illogical, and unsafe. Antisocial parents teach their children that the world is chaotic and inconsistent.
Sociopathic parents have other hallmark parenting traits that amount to psychological abuse:
- Lack of attachment, bonding, love
- Dismissiveness (because kids are boring)
- Disregard for the child’s welfare
- Harsh expectations and demands
- Neglect, often extreme
- Purposeful attempts to corrupt a child (exposure to pornography, encouraging delinquent behavior)