A researcher specializing in narcissism and psychopathy shares the red flags of the feminine psychopath.
They may be your exes, therapists, nurses, schoolteachers, professors, colleagues, friends, and foes. Female psychopaths could also be rarer than male psychopaths, but they still do considerable damage. A 2021 meta-analysis using studies totaling 11,497 people revealed that psychopathy has a prevalence rate of 4.5%, (this rate goes all the way down to 1.2% if using the gold standard Psychopathy Checklist by Hare) with rates being higher in males. However, psychopathy researchers have argued that this gender difference could also be attributed to how scales that measure psychopathy were originally designed to capture psychopathy in males within the prison population. Since female psychopaths are likely to be less physically violent (perhaps because of their socialization) but additionally are likely to have callousness and lack of emotion as more of their central features in response to studies, they might simply fly under our radar. So what do female psychopaths actually appear to be? How do they behave? If they’re not serial killers or overt bullies, what are the tell-tale behaviors that do give them away? Here are the red flags to search for:
They’re superficially charming and mirror socially acceptable responses to emotions. They are easily bored and prefer to create chaos for fun.
Much like male psychopaths, female psychopaths are only as charming. They use their cognitive empathy to mirror the socially acceptable emotional responses they observe in others to flee detection – they’ll wear many masks, adapting like chameleons to the context at hand. But inside, they’re cold, callous, conniving and cruel. They derive satisfaction and pleasure from duping and conning people – and feel thrilled when causing others pain. They use their charisma to climb the company ladder with ease, even in the event that they lack the talents to actually succeed long-term. They work out the weaknesses of others that they’ll exploit to their advantage. They are liable to boredom, so that they manufacture chaos, pitting people against each other for a greater sense of power and control. They victimize and bully the innocent, making prey out of the people they feel threatened by or are envious of. They do that in real life in addition to on social media. You will often notice each female narcissists and psychopaths online demeaning and insulting others, especially other women they’re jealous of.
They enjoy partner poaching.
In a 2022 BBC interview with female psychopaths, considered one of the feminine psychopaths interviewed described how she took great pleasure in having an affair with a person and when she became bored of the connection, ended it by sending his naked pictures to his wife, including one featuring herself together with her husband. When people asked her why she would enjoyment of doing such a thing with a lot nonchalance, she replied that it was her callousness that permitted her to achieve this. These varieties of individuals who exit of their approach to engage with partnered men as a pattern and take sadistic pleasure in doing so do exist, and research shows that partner poaching is related to psychopathic traits in each men and ladies.
They engage in relationally aggressive behavior to sabotage others and are particularly envious of those they aim.
Research shows that each narcissistic and psychopathic traits are related to malicious envy – envy that drives destructive behavior toward others. If they should not outwardly violent, female psychopaths channel their aggression into their social relationships, particularly their friendships and work relationships with other women. They may not goal those that they need: for instance, they are going to likely not be aggressive toward a boss who pays their salary, but they are going to goal other employees who appear to be surpassing them and try to undermine them in a way that depicts themselves as innocent. They spread gossip and rumors with malice. They sabotage their talented peers and flirt with their bosses and colleagues within the workplace to get ahead. They interfere within the friendships of others. They steal work and provides themselves credit. If they work with vulnerable populations, they might even re-victimize vulnerable clients; for instance, a therapist who can also be a female psychopath might learn her client’s triggers not for the aim of helping them heal, but solely for the aim of manipulating and upsetting her client so that they remain in therapy. A psychopathic female nurse may administer the incorrect dose of medication to look at her patient suffer or bully her colleagues who she deems more attractive or talented than her.
They take sadistic pleasure in mind games and lack remorse for his or her transgressions.
Whether they’re a relationship partner or friend, female psychopaths enjoy playing mind games. They use diversion tactics to flee accountability for his or her actions. They love bomb, devalue, and provoke jealousy of their partners and friends so that they may be the one who establishes dominance. They cheat on their doting spouses and cheat with the spouses of others purposely. They gaslight after insulting others covertly with backhanded comments, ensuring they capitalize on plausible deniability. They enjoy tearing down someone who’s celebrating success or exhibiting healthy pride. They misuse their sexuality to their advantage. They feel entitled to have the eye on them, even in the event that they don’t “crave” the eye like female narcissists do. For them, it’s all about profit or pleasure: if attention alleviates their chronic boredom, they’ll take it and they’re going to do whatever they need without much remorse for any harm they’ve caused.
If you’re coping with a female psychopath, it’s essential to achieve skilled support and cut ties. If you’ll be able to’t avoid them entirely, you should minimize contact – don’t disclose any personal information to them that may be used against you. Your mental well-being is paramount. You need to be free and also you need to heal.