An article in the New York Times reviews new research on how the brain reacts to lies. Essentially, when someone continues to lie, “the negative emotional signals initially associated with lying decrease as the brain becomes desensitized.”
Why big liars often start out as small ones, on NYTimes.com.
The story did not say that the research had anything to do with personality disorders. But it certainly makes sense with sociopaths — the more they lie, the easier it becomes, and they tell more lies.
And then there’s this — sociopaths like the sense of power and control that they experience when people believe their lies. So not only does the negative reinforcement fade, but the positive reinforcement of winning escalates.
Maybe it’s like an addiction — in order to get the same rush, they have to tell bigger lies. Now that’s scary.