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Radio show to discuss the children of sociopaths

Sociopathy is a disorder that doesn’t afflict a person as much as it does his/her family! Since the disorder is also partly genetic it afflicts the family for generations. This week I have heard many amazing and tragic stories and I would like to share a few of them with you. These stories are about the children of sociopaths.

I am working on a project to document symptoms of psychopathy in accused and convicted con artists. As part of this project I am interviewing the family members of con artists. That is how I became acquainted with the 17 year old daughter of a convicted con artist. She wrote me a nice note saying that if I wanted to know about her father, I should study conduct disorder (CD), because she discovered through her own reading that her father has that disorder. She wanted to know if I had heard of it.

This teenager did what many of you have done. She looked up symptoms of different mental disorders and found CD, she felt it described her father very well. CD is the diagnosis given to children who appear to be sociopaths. At 17, the girl figured out for herself that her father is a sociopath.

Even though this teenager is able to attach a label to her father’s disordered behavior, she is still coming to grips with what the diagnosis means. She is still trying to understand why and how from prison, her father was able to get a “girlfriend” to transfer money out of her mother’s bank account to his prison account so he could buy junk food at the prison store.

Another girl who grew up under the shadow of a sociopath is now nearly 30. She described very eloquently what it feels like to be confused about reality because your custodial parent lied to you every day about everything and alienated you from your mother. She is hoping for a way to heal and to feel she has a place in this world.

I also spoke to a grandma who is raising 3 boys in 3rd and 4th grade, her grandsons. She married a man many years ago who fathered two children with her before abandoning her. In spite of doing her best as a single mom, both of her children became sociopaths and were unable to parent. She is working very hard to provide for the three kids. Her task is made all the more difficult when the children visit with their sociopathic parents. She tried to keep visits limited to supervised visits, but was unsuccessful because the sociopaths “conned the court.” She believes one of the boys was just molested by his mother during unsupervised visitation. She can’t understand why the courts keep putting the children in harm’s way.

Tonight two students gave presentations in the University Child Development class I teach. The first student works for an agency that links female offenders with services to help them get stable rather than reoffend. She said that 75% of the women have young children and that many witnessed the criminal arrest of their mothers. Many also are abused when placed in the foster care system after mom goes to prison.

The second student told her own story. Her niece came to live with her many years ago at age 15 when she was orphaned due to her mother being killed in a car accident. Her niece had two children by two different men one year apart beginning at age 17. She has been very unstable with multiple arrests, is a sociopath and has been unable to care for the boys who are now 13 and 14. My student initially got custody of the youngest boy when he was small, but lost it to the child’s biologic father who is also a sociopath. She believes the father wanted his son because with the child in tow he had access to the homeless shelters for families. At the shelters there were plenty of women for him to pursue.

To make a long story short, my student got full custody of the boys when they were 7 and 8. Unfortunately much damage was already done as both children are emotionally disturbed. One boy has issues with violent behavior, animal cruelty and fire setting. He has been in residential placement for the last 2 years.

What point am I trying to make? Look at all the suffering and ruined potential sociopathic parents cause. On Friday 9/26/2008, 12 noon EST, Robin Hoffman author of I Take Thee, and survivor of a relationship with a sociopath, will be interviewing me on her radio show. We will speak about the needs of the children of sociopaths. To listen visit http://www.rcrn.info/ . You can also call in to ask a question or share your story 303 747-5121, show ID 226305.

ADDENDUM
If you didn’t hear the show you can still listen to it. It can be found in the archives 9/26 see http://www.realcoachingradio.com/node/24Thank you all for commenting and supporting each other. Perhaps what we need is a protective parent’s organization. I have collected literature about sociopaths as parents. There isn’t much. If you would like my file please feel free to write.



66 Comments on "Radio show to discuss the children of sociopaths"

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  1. janetf says:

    Literally Sleeping With Mr. Wrong

    There he was stunning and charming as ever. He swept me off my feet upon our first meeting. It was on the line of a New York City cruise where we first laid eyes on each other. He had all white on and was very neat. He had a bald head and a goatee. He smiled a lot and had very intelligent conversations. He told me that he had written a book and that he was in law enforcement. He had been working for Sing Sing Prison as a Corrections Officer (at least that is what he said). He also told me that he had three beautiful daughters.

    We started dating slowly but continuously. First there were flowers, cards and then the chocolates. We dined at very nice restaurants in Brooklyn (where he was from). This man knew how to treat a woman. I felt special because I was treated like a queen from a handsome, smart and professional man.

    We started to get in a serious relationship. He asked for my hand in marriage. I was so happy that with all the bad happening in my life that I had someone good who was by my side. We got pregnant and we were excited. We decided to combine our lives and children and get a new home to support our upcoming union.

    Well we found a beautiful condominium that was perfect for us. Mr. Wrong asked my mom for my hand in marriage and my mom happily told him yes.

    We moved in together and things were fine for the first four months. He went to all prenatal visits with me and still paid a lot of attention to me. It was great, so I thought.

    Tragedy struck

    I had four children of my own. Life was routine up until one day I had a family tragedy. One of my children did the unthinkable, took the life of their partner. The charge was manslaughter. I felt like my life was in a world wind. I was about to lose my child to the system and I lost their partner to death. Could life have gotten any worse? Well that wonderful man who was in law enforcement came to my rescue. He came with me to court, jail to visit my child and even helped in choosing a lawyer for my case. He was my media spokesperson. I was indebted to this person. There was nothing I wouldn’t do for him. I was now vulnerable.

    I was in the media a lot because of my child and circumstances surrounding the case. I started getting threatening phone calls from people I didn’t know. How did they get my number? To make a long story short I received a phone call from someone I didn’t know. They were asking me to come to a hotel room; they claimed to be an attorney and said they could help my child. I immediately told Mr. Wrong what happened and he asked me to find out the information of the hotel room and such from the caller. I gave it to him. Well, Mr. Wrong claims he went there in stead of me and he told a chilling story to me that included kidnapping and murder. He claims that in order to protect me and him he would not give me specifics on who these people were or where the bodies were to be hidden. I wanted to go to law enforcement but with what evidence. Was this even true? They would laugh me right out of the police station.

    Blessing & Curse

    As you would expect the fun didn’t last long. I had spent all my savings on our condo. I was pregnant and I found out that Mr. Wrong had two more children whom he didn’t have anything to do with, four girlfriends and a mentally ill mother in which he collected her social security benefits for himself. He fathered 5 children 3 of which were 2 years old. When I asked him why he didn’t tell me about them he said because it was before me and none of my business. I soon found out that he had four residences prior to living with me in one year.

    I was 7 months pregnant and Mr. Wrong left me. No explanations just left. My son is 2 months now and I have not seen Mr. Wrong. I went to court to seek child support and was told that if I can not get him served (process service) that they would have to dismiss my case. I eventually found out that Mr. Wrong left and ended up living with a woman (supposed wife of 15 years) and took his two daughters who he told me about in the beginning there to live with him. These were not her children and to top it off she introduced herself to his daughters as there step mom of 15 years. His daughters knew me because they lived with us in the condo for 6 months. To get them to dislike me, he told them that I killed there hamster and stole money out of their room. Now technically he has 6 children by 5 different women but only cares for 2. Not surprisingly he receives social security benefits for those two daughters. They are an additional source of income for him.

    My blessing was giving birth to a 7lb 9oz beautiful baby boy and the curse was having a sociopath as a father.

    Please visit me at my personal website: http://www.whenyoucryicry.com



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  2. JustAnother says:

    Dear Dr. Leedom,

    I would greatly appreciate having whatever information you have about sociopaths as parents. What I am most interested in is learning how I can counteract his behavior with my children without bashing him or even mentioning him. I am involved in a court battle with him, we are currently in court ordered private mediation but I don’t think the mediator will support my request for limited access to the children. They are young, 9 and 6, so he will have many years of influence over them. I need to know how to mitigate that influence so they don’t end up like him.

    Any help you can provide, any references, articles, books you can recommend would be of great help.

    Thank you.



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  3. raised by sociopath says:

    I always feel like I’m on the outside looking in. I don’t belong and am trying to find my own kind. What is my own kind?

    I was raised by two very abusive sociopaths. Oh the mind games. I don’t know my real father is because she played so many head games with me and the men she was having affairs with. I finally looking for identity in God as my father. You don’t how horrible it is to be tortured physically and tormented mentally on a daily basis.



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