Tuesday, July 18, 2017

A Shocking Crime and #Antisocial Personality Disorder

We often read about shocking crimes committed in the heat of the moment,and fail to find a logical explanation for them.It is psychology which then comes up with plausible answers to such questions.This fact was revealed explicitly to me when Jay came over to me for counseling a few years back.

He was a robust 35yrs old young man at that time.He required no prodding to come out with all the details of his life till date.He had studied only up to 8th class and he began to earn at the age of 14yrs.He had been driving a taxi since the last 20yrs.Very matter of factly,he stated that his mother did not care at all for him.The only person who loved him had been his father who had expired six years ago.He had two brothers but they lived separately because he went out of control whenever he was angry.

He had gotten married to Ena 3yrs ago but she left him after one and a half years.He loved her profusely.Now he wanted me to mediate between them.If she did not return he would first kill her and then himself.Two weeks prior to this he had purposely shoved his taxi down into a valley.It turned turtle five times and landed upside down but nobody was hurt.All this,to get Ena back.

He gave me her number and I promised to find out what she wanted.Her mother came on the line when I rang her up.She told me that Jay was addicted to opium and smack and in no way would she send her daughter back.

So I called him and gave him the update.I tried to reason out with him,to show him how he was destroying himself and finding no joy in life too.On top of that he was wrecking his health and there was still time to turn back.

He listened quietly and merely said that yes I was right.I was not surprised that he did not turn up for the next appointment.I rang him up after a few weeks to find out how he was doing.He merely said he was OK and that was the end of the story.

His was a typical case of Antisocial Personality Disorder - impulsiveness,violence,breaking laws,destroying property,scarce concern for others' rights and emotions,manipulation--it was all there.It is possible that his disorder was the result of genes or early life experiences.He deserved sympathetic,supportive treatment.

In such cases the family also has the responsibility of keeping a watchful eye on the sufferer and making sure that s/he does not get into trouble especially if s/he is a minor.

I wonder how he is,and whether or not he has transformed himself;though the chances appear bleak.The prognosis of this condition is not encouraging,however,they may mellow down with age.



  1. First step is acknowledging the disorder. We don't have enough awareness about personality disorders in our country. People shy away from treatment. As you say, hopefully he will recover with age.

    1. The awareness is certainly not there.An average parent would put down the child's misbehavior to plain stubbornness or disobedience.Very few look for professional help.

  2. I am not a professional in this field like you. My initial thought is may be he was a psychopath and/or depressed. May be some therapy and medicine would help him.

    1. We generally use the terms sociopath and psychopath interchangeably but but there is a lot of difference in degree and deviation.Not all,but some psychopaths are cold-blooded killers.However Jay was only a sociopath-having a conscience,though a weak one.Psychopaths have no conscience.
      Jay could have become a better human being if he got better environment.Psychotherapy would have helped of course.
      Thanks for giving your view SG.

    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. Often it is difficult to understand deviant behaviour and whether it is just because a person is sick or mentally unwell.

    1. Yes Rachna,I know how stressed parents are while bringing up young children.There is hardly any time or patience,to go into child psychology.

  4. Thank you so much.I am very happy that you like what I write.

  5. I do hope so they Mellow down, I have seen a lot of problems related to such at work, it is not pleasant.


  6. usually people from disturbed families develop such disorders but some pple are serious psychopaths despite coming from happy families. nice post Induji!

  7. It is in their genes. psychologists say psychopaths r born not made

  8. Thanks for sharing this with us-- it is very hard to say what brings about a mental disorder, but we have to understand it, and observe it--- people with these disorders are part of society too.


  9. It is very diffficult for someone to believe that he is suffering from a disorder ! One has to be lucky to get good advice and treaent else consequences are invariably bad!

  10. Hello!! I'am glad to read the whole content of this blog and am very excited.Thank you.

    1. I am very happy that you found my blog interesting. Thanks

  11. You are welcome.Iam glad you liked it.

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