This time last year, Lovefraud was in the midst of conducting an Internet survey about the experiences of Lovefraud readers who were romantically involved with sociopaths.
A total of 1,352 people responded, and the information that you shared was extraordinary. In fact, I believe that the Lovefraud Romantic Partner Survey probably resulted in the best and most comprehensive data about romantic relationships with sociopaths ever collected. Following are some nuggets of information:
Top three ways that survey respondents met the sociopath:
- Internet — 23%
- Social situations, like a bar, restaurant, club, party — 20%
- Doing business or working together — 17%
Top three characteristics exhibited by the sociopath:
- Charisma and charm — 91%
- Blamed others for any problems he/she had — 82%
- Sexual magnetism — 78%
Top three characteristics of the beginning of the relationship:
- Individual seemed to share my values — 83%
- Individual seemed to have so much in common with me —79%
- Individual called me frequently — 75%
Harm as a result of the relationship:
- You became anxious or depressed — 92%
- The stress of the relationship made you ill — 77%
- You lost money — 76%
The survey also contained 12 narrative questions, in which you could write whatever you wanted. And you did write! There had to be more than 10,000 answers in which you described your experience.
This was actually the second Lovefraud survey. We also conducted one in 2010 in response to the American Psychiatric Association’s request for comments on the first draft of the DSM-5—the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.
Anyway, the data from both of these surveys, along with the stories you have told me about your experiences, form the foundation of my new book, Red Flags of Love Fraud—10 signs you’re dating a sociopath. This book tells you exactly how sociopaths hook you, how to escape and how to protect yourself in the future.
The official publication date is June 11, 2012, and that’s when the media campaign begins, so I won’t be saying a lot about the book until then. But Lovefraud readers can pre-order the book. In fact, to give you taste of what it’s all about, I’ve posted the Introduction on the Lovefraud Blog.
Of course, if you’re a Lovefraud blog reader, you’ve probably already had a close encounter with a sociopath. I believe that understanding how he or she conned you can help you recover. And it can certainly help you avoid allowing another one into your life.
For more information, visit the Lovefraud Store.