How to help children who are at risk of becoming sociopaths

Happy African American Father and Mixed Race Son Playing PiggybaOne of the worst things about sociopathy is that it is highly genetic. That means everyone who has children with a sociopath must face a hard truth: Their children are also at risk of becoming sociopaths.

But genetics are not carved in stone, and just because children are at risk does not mean they are doomed to develop personality disorders.

Starting in September, Lovefraud Continuing Education presents a series of four webinars designed to teach mental health professionals how to help clients who have children at risk for externalizing disorders. (Externalizing disorders are mental disorders characterized by negative behaviors directed towards a person’s external environment, such as towards other people.)

Overcoming Children’s Genetic Risk for Externalizing Disorders:

Part 1: Externalizing disorders of childhood and adulthood, including ADHD, conduct disorder, antisocial personality disorder and psychopathy

Wednesday, Sept. 14, 12 noon (Eastern) – More info

Part 2: What genetic research says about behavior and the risk of developing externalizing disorders

Wednesday, Sept. 21, 12 noon (Eastern) – More info

Part 3: How the environment, including parenting, siblings and peers, affects the development of externalizing disorders in children –

Wednesday, Sept. 28, 12 noon (Eastern) – More info

Part 4: Brain systems, social learning, and using the Inner Triangle to immunize children against externalizing disorders

Wednesday, Oct. 5, 12 noon (Eastern) – More info


The instructor is Liane Leedom, M.D. Dr. Leedom is a psychiatrist and an associate professor of counseling and psychology at the University of Bridgeport. She has done groundbreaking research on how personality disorders affect families.

Dr. Leedom is author of Just Like His Father? A Guide to Overcoming Your Child’s Genetic Connection to Antisocial Behavior, Addiction and ADHD, and Women Who Love Psychopaths: Investigating the Relationships of Inevitable Harm.

She is also author of multiple peer-reviewed studies, including The Problem of Parental Psychopathy, and Did He Ever Love Me? A Qualitative Study of Life with a Psychopathic Husband.


The series offers continuing education credits for mental health professionals. You must purchase all four sessions.

After purchasing the webinars, you have access to them for six months, so you can review them as often as you like.

This webinar series is truly important for anyone dealing with at-risk children.



6 Comments on "How to help children who are at risk of becoming sociopaths"

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  1. becomingstrong says:

    I am particularly interested in this topic. Having reproduced with a sociopath, my father being a sociopath and at least one sibling, I fear some of my children are sociopaths. The problem is not only do I have to face that some of my children have a genetic predisposition to be sociopaths, but the fact that they have a parent who spends 100 percent of his endless energy nurturing the sociopathy in my children. In other words, I don’t think there is much I can do or want to do. If I were left to my own devices, I didn’t have his incessant undermining me, constant berating me to my children, and reducing me to the status of a door mat maybe there would be hope. Living with a sociopath has ensured that the children who want a relationship with him and have the genetic predisposition will become sociopaths at the very least minions. As a mere mortal I don’t want to spend my life chasing my tail with children who have no respect for me, regard for me, love for me and view me as mere vessel and nothing more than a servant. How does deal with that?

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    • Becoming strong – I know you’ve talked about your situation before. How old are your children?

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      • becomingstrong says:

        I have 5 children who range in age from 7-16. My two oldest children exhibit signs of sociopathy. My second child I am sure is a sociopath or well on her way. When this child was in 2nd grade her teacher called me down to school to relay and incident which involved my daughter. The long and short of this meeting was the teacher told me that her concern wasn’t the minor offense committed by my daughter but my daughter’s “disturbing” reaction. The teacher was alerting me and all but said she thought my daughter lacked a conscience. At the time I was shocked as I didn’t see it. But looking back it was there. Also, my spath groomed her. I came across an email he had written to his brother about 8 years ago (my daughter was 6-7 years old) in which my spath relayed to his brother that my daughter sympathized with him and would be the most accessible and open to “help” him in the even that we separated.

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        • Becoming strong – If your younger children are not exhibiting the signs, I would advise that you try to keep them with you and away from the sociopath. Although children may inherit a genetic risk, it is their environment – including parenting and siblings – that either encourages or discourages the development of the disorder.

          Dr. Leedom explains all of this in her course. It is somewhat technical – geared for mental health professionals – but if you’ve been to college you could probably follow most of it. We do plan to offer a course for parents on the topic, but it is not scheduled yet.

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          • becomingstrong says:

            Thank you Donna for the info, clarification and advice.
            Unfortunately, I cannot “save” all my children from being exposed to this malady/affliction. Maybe I can save one child. When your spath has the will, the resources and the children desire to be with him, there is a little I can do to keep him away from those children. I do have one child I thus far have been able to protect and keep away from him. I am moving far away when my divorce is finalized and maybe that will help. But there may come a day in which my 1 child wants to be with him and her siblings and if that day comes there is little I can do. Thanks again.

  2. Mother.Love says:

    Hi Donna, after several years with therapists I can attest to the continued damage and irreparable harm they’ve done. Father’s Rights movement has made it a CRIME to supposedly Alienate children although I did what needed to be done. Remove them from his clutch as well as myself. The Court agreed with him and never once listened to my story. Victim’s Advocates get nowhere either. Once again, the Courts in CT don’t care what’s being done to the Innocents and actually forced us to go to a therapist who DENIED the abuse of myself and children. Therapists, in my opinion, have the Obligation to consider ALL the facts and leave out their political agendas. Nothing will improve until THEY acknowledge the harm these types can cause.

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