A MUST-READ If You Ask Yourself “WHY DID I STAY?” or “WHY CAN’T I LEAVE?”

Why did you stay?

Why did I, and why did the rest of us? If you’re still involved, why can’t you leave? Find out below. In the process, free yourself from needless self-blame and shame.

“I just can’t get over why I did not leave. Why I stayed. That is what scares me the most. How much I betrayed myself. Embarrassed myself in front of my family.”

The reader who wrote those words speaks for many others who were involved in an abusive relationship and wonder why they stayed as long as they did, after it seemed obvious that things had gone very wrong.

Another reader asked, “Why is it that it takes so long for the crying to stop when the brain clearly knows that leaving was a good thing?… I wonder if there is some psychological or chemical explanation for that.”

Yes, there is a chemical and psychological explanation. It is tremendously powerful to understand the neurobiological underpinning of your experience. It can help you heal.

If you still wonder why you stayed, you can free yourself from your ongoing confusion and self-reproach. Find the answers within one very helpful article by Rhonda Freeman, PhD, a neuropsychologist who helps survivors of psychopathic and narcissistic abuse to understand, and heal from, their trauma:

The Spellbinding Bond to Narcissists and Psychopaths – What’s Happening in the Brain?

In her article, Dr. Freeman tackles the complex reasons we stay entangled in a harmful relationship. She writes, “Unfortunately, it’s not as simple as ‘Your behavior is unacceptable. I’m leaving.’ Some people have real struggles with this for legitimate reasons.” She explains the reasons we stay in a way that makes them clear and understandable, as well as to give us legitimate reasons for it (In other words, it wasn’t because you betrayed yourself or that you were “stupid”).

Dr. Freeman’s article covers the following:

  • Given the choice of emotion or logic, which will the brain follow?
  • Intermittent reinforcement
  • Power differentials
  • Trauma bonding
  • The neuroscience underlying our gripping bonds to pathological individuals
  • Addiction to the abusive partner (actual addiction, just like to a drug)
  • Healing

And more.

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Dr. Freeman also has a website for survivors, NEUROINSTINCTS, that explores “relationships with partners devoid of morals, empathy, honesty and a conscience.” The goal of the site is “to empower victims of emotional and physical abuse and to expand their understanding of the dynamics behind these toxic relationships, often from a neuropsychological angle.”

Understanding the dynamics is a powerful part of the healing process. It’s not only powerful, it’s necessary. If you don’t understand what happened, how can you heal from it? As I’ve written here many times, if you still blame yourself, there is some knowledge/understanding you still need in order to move forward.

You might even choose to send the article featured in this post to friends or family who can’t understand why you stayed. It was not due to a character defect or a lack of common sense. It could happen to anyone.

A blog post you may have missed, one that helped many people and that I wrote with input from Dr. Freeman, is Genuine Attraction, Manipulation or Something More? Dr. Rhonda Freeman Explains. If you haven’t read it yet, please do.

♥ Harness the power of neuroscience to help yourself heal

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34 thoughts on “A MUST-READ If You Ask Yourself “WHY DID I STAY?” or “WHY CAN’T I LEAVE?””

  1. Mohammad

    Hello, i have a question and i hope that i find the answer here.
    I was so called in ( a relationship ) with a female psychopath, and i have completed the healing stages after 2 years from the ( discard ) phase

    1. Adelyn Birch

      Mohammad, it looks as if your comment got cut off. I’m glad to hear you’ve healed. Best of luck to you.

  2. Cheryl

    I think they trick us at first . Like a spider to a fly caught in a web. The fly trying to escape. Although they are manipulative, after awhile you will catch them lying constantly. Soon you fly out of the web of deceit.

    1. Adelyn Birch

      It is a lot like a spider’s web, Cheryl. I’m not so sure about “soon you fly out of the web of deceit,” though. It didn’t happen soon enough for most of us. “Eventually” might be a better word.

    2. Marie

      I wonder if you are the Cheryl I tried to warn. If so, I’m glad you escaped. It was two years for me-I’m educated and accomplished. But I fell for this completely. Great damage to my health. I’m still in shock. This site is a godsend. I’m relieved to know healing is possible. And the posts! Today the post on genderlessness fascinated me. It fit him to a T. Thank you to the admin.

      1. Adelyn Birch

        You’re welcome, Marie. I wish you all the best on your journey to healing xx

  3. amanda

    I got trapped 11vyears even though got out by court order 2 yrs ago he lived 3 mins away so never went out unless had to all my money possessions converted into liquid form an alcoholic remained call calm infornt of judge he got believed I did not lost 3 homes on property ladder 33 yrs no where to go so in a refuge for safety he trapping buyers of my house sold 8 yrs ago sold from under me he had racked his debts onto it now an IVA I need support but soliciotrs need money nothing eft to continue so you need to be a millionaire to stop a criminal may his liver pack up very soon he on to victim no.5 now still accued of being jealous by a judge so will not show concern for her anymore

    1. Adelyn Birch

      I’m sorry you’ve had to deal with all of that, Amanda! If his behavior is criminal, shouldn’t it be handled by the DA (prosecutor) at no cost to you? May his liver pack up soon, indeed. If not, I hope you’ll find the support you need.

  4. Caroline

    It took me three years if on and off, being lied to and being what I now know is called farsighted and a conversation with his new woman to realize what he was. I ended it finally and he has moved straight on to a new woman with money who is aware that he is a liar but has stayed, I struggle to find the karma as I pick up the pieces but will do just that

    1. Adelyn Birch

      I’d forget about Karma if I were you, Caroline. It doesn’t seem to apply to psychopaths. I wish you all the best as you pick up the pieces xx

      Be sure to read, Genuine Attraction, Manipulation or Something More? It explains why they immediately run off with someone else.

  5. Christine

    Hello Adelyn,

    I have been seeing a woman therapist who is approaching my trauma as PTS growth. She “gets” it, and emphatically has said she “believes” that my abuser psychiatrist was a psychopath. I feel I am making progress with her. I am no longer afraid of the therapy; she has emphasized the need to feel safe and to have some stability, before getting into what I do remember which is destabilizing and often causes me to dissociate or to be overwhelmed with intense feelings.

    I was re-reading some of your posts and you say that a clear understanding of what happened is necessary for healing. Since I have so little memory of what happened when I was alone with him, I wonder if I will ever have a “clear understanding”. The memories that I do have were enough for me to conclude he was a psychopath…(that came after finding your blog). All my psychologist had actually said was that I was “manipulated and abused” by him.

    My therapist says it will be up to me to decide if “remembering” would be something I want or need because there would be some benefit from it. I just don’t know if remembering will give me the “clear understanding” that you refer to as necessary to healing. I don’t know how he manipulated me or what form the abuse took. I sense that my therapist, who has the education and experience to know, understands the possibilities, but is careful not to “lead” me…do you understand what I mean? Do you have a sense that I will need the memories in order to fully heal? I’m not ready to make that decision, but I feel I am approaching the time when I must. This is scary. There are some things I suspect and I want to ask her, but am afraid of the answers. She is very kind and gentle, I just need to muster the courage…

    Thanks for reading my meanderings… I hope they make sense.

    Blessings…..
    Christine

    1. Adelyn Birch

      Hi Christine. I think you should listen to what your therapist says. I can only speak in generalities, based on what worked for me. Since you disassociate, I really can’t say what would be best for you. But having said that, I don’t think detailed memories are needed for a clear understanding that you were manipulated. All manipulators work from the same bag of tricks. Your psychiatrist victimized you by manipulating you. What happened to you wasn’t your fault. Those are the most important things to get. I’m not sure if I answered your question, but I hope so. I’m so glad to hear you have a therapist that you like and who gets what happened xx

      1. Christine

        Thanks for responding, Adelyn. I didn’t mean to put you “on the spot” with my question. I guess I am still in a state of confusion about how he manipulated me and what my psychologist meant by abuse. The dissociation I experience when I share what I do remember isn’t something I see others here mention…so that is different and really not something you deal with in your blog. Thank you for your kind response.

        Christine

        1. Adelyn Birch

          I’m sorry I can’t be of more help to you. Dissociation adds a challenge to healing, and I don’t know how it factors in. Why not ask your psychologist what he or she meant by abuse? They’re probably assuming you understood what they meant. Ask about manipulation, too. A lot of abusers use the same tactics. If you read stories of others who were victimized by predatory mental health professionals, they seem to follow the same pattern. If you go to the blog post about abusive psychotherapists, you can find some links there. Christine, I’m so glad to know that you continue to actively pursuing healing. I know it’s been a long road, but you will get there one day xx

  6. Edna

    Dear Adelyn,
    thank you for this blog and all you do. Most of all, thank you for your blog on ASpies and the relational nightmare that they are. Having just separated from one after a lifetime of lonely and emotionally empty marriage, I came upon your post by accident and feel as though my eyes opened for the first time.

    You are absolutely 100% right in your assessment. And the abusive comments from autists who want to shut you up and deny reality only prove how right you are.

    It is astounding, BTW, how nasty and vehement, and how powerful, the autistic industry / lobby and its toxic version of PC have become. It only shows how destructive deficits of empathy are, no matter their origin.

    1. Adelyn Birch

      Hi, Edna. I’m glad you felt validated by the article! I agree, the comments were astounding. I’m so sorry your marriage was lonely and empty. There’s an active forum for AS partners and exes, where you might find some support: Welcome to AS Partners

      Some other sites you might find helpful:

      The Neurotypical Website
      Asperger Partners Speak

      I wish you all the best xx

  7. Edna

    P.S. Let me just add, once more, that your post on ASpies is brilliant. And don’t let anyone — especially ASpies — tell you otherwise.

    1. Adelyn Birch

      Thank you, Edna ;-)

  8. The Plummer

    Why I stayed?… Because INTEGRITY.. I had the erroneous belief that “you never lose till you give up”… Not knowing that in the more times than I realized that you are put into the role of playing a rigged game that cannot be won… (Not that you even want to play the game, or a zero sum game at that), there is no such thing as a “win-win” in the psychopaths mind, and anything they ‘give up’ to get their way, they always feel like they gave too much, and should have witheld (or bargained) for a ‘better (for them) deal’.

    Once I figured out that the integrity that I had, was preventing me from recognizing that I was in a rigged game, I finally felt much better about the loss of what I thought was a relationship, and the only way to “win” in a rigged game is to refuse to play.

    Unfortunately, being a man, the game is rigged way beyond just the relationship, with the way the gynocentric nature of the legal and court system heavily favors mothers, and her desire to manipulate the children… The PAS (parental alienation syndrome) is now complete… I’ve struggled greatly for the last 6 years, and obtained approval from my priest, that it was alright for me to ‘give up’ on my kids… For he said that I had gone well above and beyond trying to salvage a relationship with my children, and if approval to let go of them was why I was there speaking to him… I had it…

    My attitude now is that of the Prodigal, in the parable of the Prodigal’s son. I’ve let them go, hoping that someday they will see reality in who the abuser really is, and desire to reconnect with their father…. I only hope that they are not ‘infected’ with what I believe is a contageous disease, of cluster B traits…And they are ruined for life also.

    Dr. Craig Childress has done some amazing work on the phenomena of Cluster B and PAS… And his work should be mandetory for every legal professional who deals with, and ajudicates family law… Emotional child abuse is rarely detected in the psychopathic dynamic… Especially when perpetrated by the mother…

    1. Adelyn Birch

      “the only way to ‘win’ in a rigged game is to refuse to play.” True!

      Sorry to hear you struggled for so many years, Plummer. I’m glad your priest supported you in your decision, and I hope that your children will one day see the truth.

  9. Scared

    After reading your article on love bombing I fear I might have found myself in the grip of a female psychopath. At a minimum I’ve falling victim of a serious love bombing campaign and done some mindbogglingly reckless things in the process. Things I can’t believe. I don’t know if I can, or should share this on your site, but I have got my new partner pregnant. I’m scared as I’m Increasing picking up on lies and starting to wonder if any of what I’ve been told is true. I feel completely helpless and free I might be just starting Plummer’s journey. She has had children to other men- none of which are in the picture or allowed to see their children. I really wish I had have come across your site a few months ago.

    1. Adelyn Birch

      Hi, Scared. I can understand why you’ve chosen that name for yourself, and my heart goes out to you. I hope you’re not starting Plummer’s journey, but from what you’ve said, that very well could be. I wish I knew what to tell you. You’ve figured out what’s going on, but the pregnancy complicates everything, so now what do you do? Whatever you do, don’t marry her (if you haven’t already done so). I’m going to contact a guy I know who was married to a psychopathic partner, and get his perspective. Maybe he’ll have some advice for you. Check back here again for an update, OK?

      1. The Plummer

        Scared… Do NOT marry her! If you do, you will have given all your power and control away to her… She already has much power, and I’d probably insist that my name NOT be on the birth certificate, or the state WILL absolutely come after you for support, when she asks them to step in… If she does, demand a paternity test, because there’s a 40% chance the child isn’t yours in the first place.

        Now, always TRY to have a relationship with the child, but realize it’s going to be ‘hampered’ by her… I’d suggest learning all you can about PAS (Dr. Craig Childress has lots of short youtube videos on the matter, as well as some really great books).

        Do not reward her bad behavior, each and every time she ‘acts up’, remove yourself from her, and make her come to you…

        And document Each and Every lie, or bad action she does, you’ll need it in court because you’ll be going up against a system designed to absolve women from their bad behavior, and lay it all on you… So you’ll have a tough hill to climb, but with proper documentation, you can prevail and actually do the right thing for the child, when she decides to take the nuclear option and carve you out of her and your child’s life…

        Also, look into Athol Kay’s book Married Man Sex Life, he has some good advice on how to maintain a relationship with women… As well as Rick at Reignite the fire. com He has some special techniques on how to be in a relationship with cluster B’s…

        I’ll admit, crazy is intoxicating and fun to be around when they are in a good mood, but you’ll have to ask yourself if being involved with ‘crazy’ is actually worth it or not… Rick at Reignite the fire says that Cluster B women are so intoxicating because they are actually “hyper” women… Women to the extreme… and that is really exciting to be around, but you must be able to ‘handle’ her to keep her calm, and still attracted to you…

        I hope this gets through being moderated, for I fear that I might be offending women, but not intending to do so… It’s not all women, just the ones really high on the spectrum of emotional thinking…

        1. Adelyn Birch

          THANK YOU, PLUMMER for stepping in and offering your advice. Much appreciated.

          I do want to add, though,that I’m not so sure it’s wise to try to maintain a relationship with someone who has a cluster B disorder. All of the cluster B types lack empathy, so there is no actual relationship to maintain in the first place.

          EMPATHY: What It Is and Why You Need It

          ETA: I spoke with Plummer, and he explained that when he wrote about maintaining a relationship, he meant only if someone had to keep dealing with the person because their children were involved.

    2. Adelyn Birch

      Scared, I have asked for thoughts on your plight from someone who came very close to being in your position, has done a lot of research on the topic and has given it a lot of thought. Here is his response.

      __________________________________________

      I’m not sure anything I can say will help, but here’s my thoughts in case they are useful in any way. He may be unaware of, and shocked by, some of what I’m about to say, but I think he needs to know it all sooner rather than later.

      It sure sounds like he’s with a psychopath or something very similar. My first point is that she is unlikely to be capable of changing and the relationship is likely to get worse if he stays in it – he may have gathered that from your website already.

      This could easily have been me if my ex had put more pressure on me to
      make a baby early on. I’m very lucky we didn’t later on cos we tried
      to (in a foolish, desperate bid to appease her, which didn’t work –
      contributing to me leaving her). So this situation is something I’ve
      considered and all the options are indeed scary, i.e. stay with her,
      walk away completely, or leave her but try to have a relationship with
      the child – which means having an ongoing and probably unpleasant
      relationship with the ex. There’s also concern about how the child
      will be treated by her (likely to be poorly from what I’ve read about
      how p’s treat their children and can imagine based on my ex’s
      inability to control her urges to control, manipulate and torment) and
      concern about how the child’s behaviour will be given that it will
      have some of her genes.

      None of the options are pleasant, but he needs to do what’s best for
      himself and the child, and that is clearly to leave the relationship
      (never mind avoiding marriage!). He will be in a worse position to
      look after his own well being and the child’s if he continues to
      receive the abuse that comes with the relationship. He has to try to
      leave on the best terms possible, as soon as possible, and do it
      quickly to avoid giving her opportunities to manipulate him further or
      prolong the agony. This is possibly the trickiest moment of a very
      tricky situation. Then he needs to stay away and not try to go back
      even if he feels he’s made a mistake by leaving her, which often
      happens.

      It will be difficult to pluck up the courage to leave her (and the
      child). It’s difficult to know how to do it, including what words to
      say to her. Her reaction will not be truly constructive, but she may
      feign being innocent, or apologise, act upset and talk him into
      staying with her. Or she will shun him completely and use his “lack
      of commitment” (to an unhealthy relationship) as grounds for not
      allowing him to have a relationship with the child. Under no
      circumstances should he even mention the possibility of abortion.
      This will only give her ammunition for distancing him from the child –
      assuming she continues with the pregnancy – and it makes for a
      strained relationship with the child later on. He has to accept that
      the pregnancy is entirely in her hands.

      Unfortunately he may have to accept that he won’t have much contact
      with the child. I wonder if he knows any of her family or friends in a
      way that he feels he could talk to them. If so it may be useful to
      contact one or two of them (as soon as he feels calm enough) and
      explain his side of the story – briefly – and that he wants to have a
      relationship with the child. Staying in occasional contact with them
      may be the best chance he has of developing a relationship with the
      child in future. Even sending letters he never gets replies to would
      be worthwhile (copies of all letters can be shared with the child at
      some point).

      He should not try to reason with her at all. That will only give her
      an opportunity to manipulate and control him further. If he feels he
      needs to inform her to her face that he is leaving he should only
      state the basic facts i.e. he senses she’s been dishonest with him
      (and whatever else has been going on, e.g. coldness, distance,
      hostility), has come to realise her true nature and cannot be treated
      like that any longer. He should avoid focusing on any specific
      examples as that will only give her an opportunity to control the
      discussion. I chose to leave a very simple note when I left. It was absolutely the only way I
      could leave her. There is no way I could face her because I knew it
      wouldn’t take much for her to talk me into staying, and the other
      possibility was extreme anger. She usually manipulated me into
      apologising for everything.

      A few of my friends thought my leaving a note was a cowardly,
      heartless thing to do, despite my trying to explain why I had to do it
      that way. This chap needs to be warned that other people, even his
      closest friends, may not be able to understand what he’s gone through
      or why he takes whatever actions he decides to take. He needs to know
      he is not the only one who has gone through something like this, he
      will survive and in time he will heal and be ok. He will become
      stronger with the relationship behind him and that’s just what he
      needs to be for his own well being and that of the child. The
      aftermath of the relationship won’t be easy – it rarely is. He needs
      to focus on his own identity and the fact that he is a good person and
      accept that the healing path involves ups and downs.

      It will help if he accepts that the situation was largely of her
      making. He is not to blame for assuming she had normal human
      qualities, truly loved him and for being vulnerable to her deceitful
      personality. It will help if he realises that she was not being
      deceitful in order to achieve some other purpose. They may be working
      towards longer term goals but the experience of deception itself is a
      driving force. They get a kick out of manipulating, controlling and
      tormenting. And when they realise they can’t fool you any longer they
      lose interest in you pretty quickly.

      The most important sentence in this
      reply is “he needs to do what’s best for himself and the child, and
      that is clearly to leave the relationship”. He should learn as much
      as he can about psychopathy until he reaches a point where he doesn’t
      feel like learning anymore about it – which means he’s learned enough.
      Understanding what happened helps when healing. Your website is the
      best starting point I know of. It would be wise for him to see a
      trauma specialist. One who definitely understands psychopathy. He
      may have to accept that he needs to spend a lot of time and money on
      healing over the next year or two, possibly longer. It’s an
      investment in his future and the child’s. He should be kind, generous
      and gentle with himself. That doesn’t mean being selfish. Treating
      others the same way is also healthy as long as it doesn’t burn up the
      resources he needs for himself.

    3. Scared

      Thanks to everyone for your comments and support. It really means a lot to me. Plummer, I certainly will try and have a relationship with my child, but I fear if she really is as manipulative as I now believe, and so willing to lie, I will have an uphill battle if she turns against me. I’m now starting to wonder if her ex partners were as abusive and horrible as she claims? This is now my greatest concern. She is brilliant, and I’ve learnt very good at deception. What if she makes up lies about me to stop me from seeing my child? She’s more than capable if she wants to! I will do as you say and document as much as possible, but I don’t like my chances if things turn nasty.

      At the moment she is distant and cold, and not talking of marriage, but she is still keeping me in the picture. I know I have to leave, this empty sham of a relationship is not healthy, but I still both fear and love her.

      I see now there was never a genuine, loving person at the other end of that smile, but it’s still hard to let go (especially with a child on the way). But the lies and coldness are too much.

      The frustrating part is my gut was screaming at me to run from day one, that it was too good to be true, but she really picked her victim well.. I wanted her to be real. She claimed it was love at first sight, and I can still remember the excitement on her face when we first met. Turns out the excitement was probably that of a predator finding its prey..

      But I will do the rational thing (finally) and leave. Staying with her is soul destroying and unhealthy (as everyone has warned). It won’t be easy, she is very manipulative and I’m still in love, but I do need to get out before she destroys me. I really hate the idea of her raising my child, but I only have myself to blame.

      1. Scared

        I should add, she has kept me very isolated from the few family and friends that she has in her life. I’ve been trying to meet them with little success. I haven’t shared my fears with my family, who all love her..

      2. The Plummer

        I’m struggling with words here scared. Your response has both touched my heart in several ways.

        It warms my heart to know that there is someone out there that can benefit from me telling my story, and I can feel your genuine appreciation. So I should be the one thanking you.

        However, I also feel a great deal of sadness… Sadness that you and your child are likely to experience at least what I and mine have experienced. And I know exactly how you feel about still loving her. It’s very difficult to turn off those feelings that they are so masterful as not only cultivating from you, but actually growing them to a state of hyper devotion, causing you to want so much more, more for both of you, and your future child. It truly saddens me, as I’ve learned a hard lesson in life. You can only help people that want to be helped. You will be very disappointed in life when you love someone more than they love themselves… But maybe that’s not exactly true… For hate is not the opposite of love, hate is actually hyper self love.

        I truly fear that once you are put in the position that she ‘hates’ you, and she will. for her own self love is going to rear it’s ugly head, and you will be the target of that hatred (self love). I know this to be true, for you’ve already indicated that she has children from other men, that she will not allow to have a relationship with those children. I’m sure she’s crafted some story with plausable deniabilty to her own deficiancies as to why she’s refusing to allow the other men in the childrens’s lives, and even probably gotten you to side with and believe her, actually having a great disdain towards those other men. For playing victimhood is their forte, and they are masters at playing the victim, even while they are actually the perpetrator of abuse.

        I truly fear that you are in for a very bumpy road, and pray that you have the ability to maintain a relationship that can withstand the pending PAS that is surely headed your way.

        And if I could only give but one more bit of advice, Please…Please… Please… Learn all you can about PAS, from the inside and out, and never give her any ammunition for her to spotlight to your child, as evidence that you are as bad as she claims you to be.

        Be well my friend, and good luck in the future.

        1. Scared

          Thanks again Plummer, your story and understanding have really helped eased some of my self loathing. And your advice, I think, will turn out to be invaluable. I hope you have, or will, find genuine love again

  10. Anthony

    Hello Adelyn, I am back to share a realization that you may already know. It is has to do with autism (i prefer that term over aspergers since the term aspergers has been removed from the dsm and the only reason why it is still kept around is due to some pride identity that I wish to have no part of).
    I wondered for a while why there are sites such as FAAAS and such for a while. I though why other conditions that can cause relationship trauma like schizophrenia, bipolar, brain damage from drug use, or even some forms of dementia also can cause it but OTRS is applied to autism mostly on the internet. It then hit me, validation. I wondered why there was a huge media argument after the sandy hook shooting about autism but there wasn’t a similar one about schizophrenia for the Aurora shooting. I also then realized one reason why. With the other conditions, they are accepted with a medical view already and no argument needs to be had. But with autism there is a strong backlash whenever the medical model of autism is presented, a medical view is the norm for the other conditions,
    the backlash coming from the neurodiversity movement (though I found out there are groups like Mad Pride for schizophrenia yet they are mostly powerless and treated as pseudoscience movements). With other relationship traumas, they simply recognize the issue as from a disorder and there is sympathy, validation, and understanding for the partner, and compassion for the one with the disease, no further arguing needed.

    But with autism they won’t let that happen, no, they have to throw fuel on the fire. There is also the fact that autism is now used over the internet as a slur and videos with severely autistic people are trolled and mocked. While I am not excusing their behavior, this would likely not happen as often had neurodiversity not created the situations by not leaving autism merely as one of many conditions that exist like the rest. They had bring the wrong kind of attention to it creating a huge mess. Instead of autistic people and neurotypicals together vs the disease, they created this false war between autistic people and neurotypicals that should not have been. You were correct that they are harmful to both autistic people and non-autistic people in the end. Validation is key.

    (The following are some other thoughts, you can ignore them)
    I personally draw more inspiration from Sue Rubin, a very deep non-verbal low functioning person who can communicate with a keyboard than Temple Grandin any day. A things that confuses me is the lack of distress at lacking empathy other autistic people have. I would have a much better and happier life if I could truly share and feel what others feel yet others simply seem so indifferent about it. Why is it wrong to admit they lack it and want to be able to have more? Things like small talk they criticize so much are not useless fluff, its a way humans bond and share with eachother, its a vital part of the soul. Being able to help others, to be there for other people and to listen and understand brings joy and gives meaning to life. Why are they not upset about not being able to take part?
    Lastly
    If they truly want to be accommodated, then there has to be compassion which can come much easier if we admit there is a disease (the way other people do with other disorders). Once again, neurodiversity only sabotages the one’s they supposedly stand up for. They are no autism rights group, rather the opposite.

    1. Adelyn Birch

      Hi, Anthony. Thank you for sharing more of your thoughts; you’re an insightful person. As far as some people with autism not admitting their lack of empathy, they aren’t able to understand they lack empathy, according to Simon Baron-Cohen. When people troll and mock videos of autistic people, that shows a lack of empathy, too. “In two studies conducted online, researchers examined personality traits and the online commenting styles of 1,215 people. The investigators found that Internet trolls tended to have personality traits related to sadism, psychopathy and Machiavellianism… ” Sadist Behind the Screen: The ‘Internet Troll’ Personality

      1. Anthony

        I read that link. I sometimes wonder why the incidence of this behavior is very high despite the fact that they can’t all be genetically psychopathic. Likewise many tyrants like Genghis Khan had children and relatives who engaged in terrible behavior, but the genes couldn’t have been passed father to son or relative consistently. I suspect that there is a huge majority of secondary psychopaths, people who engage in the behavior from their surroundings, sometimes from the cultural indoctrination (like Genghis Khans descendants and relatives).

        A youtuber once said “a crowd has no conscience”, those trolls possibly acting as one large mass go along with each other with some unofficial ringleaders at the head, they see trolling and take part in it, many of them aren’t masterminds, but followers. So they cling to hate groups or terrible trends like internet bullying. They do real true damage like hacking a site for epilepsy with flashing images.

        I also looked at your post on why its called anti-social personality disorder rather than flat out sociopathy, I see, they do identify them by actions rather than their inner mind. The DSM is a group of a few dozen individuals, they control what goes in and out. Did you know that over a century ago homosexuality was considered a type of psychopathic behavior among some in the western world? Ridiculous! I am not a conspiracy theorist, but I already know that there are powerful groups who make decisions for us, and some of these decisions are just plain awful.

        1. Adelyn Birch

          I agree with you about the secondary psychopaths. What the YouTuber said is true; it’s called “mob mentality,” and you’re right, the paths are probably the ring leaders. Just look at Trump for an example of that. He’s bringing his follower’s anger and hate to the surface. He’s making it OK to hate openly. There is no logic at all to his popularity; it’s fueled by fear and other dark emotions. When that happens, higher brain faculties aren’t engaged anymore.

          Yes, I do know that homosexuality was once considered abnormal. Hard to believe! In fact, it wasn’t completely removed from the DSM until 1987! And it wasn’t until 2013 that kinkiness was removed! Sheesh. If something’s true, it’s not a conspiracy theory.

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