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How a psychopath is made

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Two “extreme” parenting styles have been linked to children becoming criminal psychopaths in later life, a study has revealed, reported New York Post (US).

The Norwegian University of Science and Technology interviewed high-security prisoners and found many have a history of either total parental neglect, or rigidly controlling, authoritarian parents.

A psychopath is a person who suffers from a chronic mental disorder with abnormal or violent social behavior.

They are defined by their lack of empathy and have a tendency to manipulate people without any guilt.

The startling research found that all criminal psychopaths studied also had a history of grotesque physical and/or psychological abuse during childhood.

Study author Dr. Aina Gullhaugen commented: “Without exception, these people have been injured in the company of their caregivers.

“And many of the descriptions made it clear that their later ruthlessness was an attempt to address this damage, but in an inappropriate or bad way.”

Explaining the types of parents criminal psychopaths typically had, she added: “If you think of a scale of parental care that goes from nothing, the absence of care, all the way to the totally obsessive parent, most parents are in the middle.

“The same applies to how we feel about parental control.
“On a scale from ‘not caring’ all the way to ‘totally controlling,’ most have parents who end up in the middle.

“But it is different for psychopaths.
“More than half of the psychopaths I have studied reported that they had been exposed to a parenting style that could be placed on either extreme of these scales.

“Either they lived in a situation where no one cared, where the child is subjected to total control and must be submissive, or the child has been subjected to a neglectful parenting style.”

Parents cannot be blamed for everything, and there are many children who have awful upbringings and don’t go on to become criminal psychopaths.

Gullhaugen said: “Of course, not all reckless behavior is explained by a bad upbringing, but we do not inherit everything either. That is my main point.”

Experts have previously revealed what personality traits to look out for in order to spot a psychopath.

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Reporter: Denes Osvalt
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