Child Behavior Community
I think my son is a sociopath.
About This Community:

This patient support community is for discussions relating to child behavior, discipline (behavior management), parent-child communications, and social development.

Font Size:
Blank Blank

I think my son is a sociopath.

My son A is now 6 years old , the second boy of three . Upon birth it was apparent that A was "different " or "odd" in some way ( others commented upon this as well ) although I could never put my finger on exactly what it was that was different. Dad and I had a fairly amicable divorce when A was 2 , and we both have regular contact and visitation with all of our three boys . There has been no mental , physical or emotional abuse of A.

-A began exhibiting signs of sexuality ( masterbation (masturbation) and activly noticing attractive women ) at about 9 months .

-A has always had what I feel to be "muted " emotions in all ranges except anger.

-Over the years A has become obsessed with fire and all things to do with fire to the point where we keep all matches and lighters locked away and remove the knobs from the stove .

-A is an extremely attractive child and INCREDIABLY charming .

-A hurts animals when he thinks no one is looking but claims to feel deeply for them and cares well for them untill you look away . He killed his older brothers guiniepig and drowned a pet frog (though I cannot prove it was him ,it was)

-A's personality seems "fake" and candied much of the time.

-A does not seem to get much enjoyment out of life . Normal activities like Disney or fun child play do not seem to make him happy .He does not smile very much. Swimming is the only child fun activity that seems to please Aaron , it is when I get to hear his laugh.

-A seem anxious in public places.

-A still soils his pants about twice a week.

-A is violent to his brothers if an adult is not present , he often manipulates them into doing dangerous things resulting in injury.

-A remembers and holds grudges resulting in voilence longterm after the transgression.

-A charms especially women with percieved sensativity.And after they are comfortable gropes them in innapropriate ways.

-A does not respond to punishment or reward as he seems to see no difference between the two.

-A makes excuses for his behavior or tries to deny his behavior even when it is apparent that he is caught.

-A has told me that upon adulthood when he dates women, he will drive them to the woods and make them remove their clothes and tie them to trees with a rope.

-A has threatened family members with stabbings or that he will set them on fire while they sleep.

-A has been found stashing victoria sercret catalogues between his bed and matress.

-I have the least amount of problems from normal boy behavior from A .

I have taken A to 4 PHD's specializing in child behavior and come away with no anwser, I have had referal after referal from his pediatrician . I am almost convinced that this is the anwser but have been able to find anyone that will help.There is no explanation for his behavior .When A makes statements that are shocking we give them no special importance so as not to encourage these things but they continue anyway.Please help, we are just a normal family but something is terribly wrong.I have done a lot of reading on child mental health and as of late on this disorder .

note:-I did read a study about brain wave activity and sociopathy that suggested sleep patterns during awakening are an earmark, I myself was found to have these same patterns years ago durring a study on my own brain wave activity , but I am def. not a sociopath. The family history of mental health is unknown on my side but my son's paternal grandfather has been in and out of prison his whole life for crimes involving people exploitation.

Related Discussions
14 Comments Post a Comment
Avatar n tn
I also wanted to add, that A has very mature almost uncanny common sense .He does well in school but struggles with it and has no real interest in any school activities including any learning activity and recess.
13167 tn?1327197724
Hmmmm.      There is a lot of thought in your description - you are very good at looking at your child with very clear vision.  Not many parents are able to do that!  Kudos.

I have a very beautiful middle son,  who is now 16,  and so I kind of think you can write a little bit of the behavior off to being beautiful.  Being charming comes very naturally to people who are unusually good-looking - it's almost a curse.  So maybe you can take the sexuality and charm off the table for now.

Also,  the lack of bowel control I don't believe is an indicator of a personality problem.  Look up "encopresis".  

The other characteristics - hurting animals,  wanting to burn or stab family members is a GRAVE concern.  Hurting his brothers while adults aren't looking is really a red flag.  

I feel like you need to separate all these things out,  and seek help for Aaron's sadistic behaviors,  and the other stuff isn't necessarily that much a concern.

Best wishes.  Keep persuing this.  Stats say that mothers have to seek help 6 times before someone finally listens.  Keep seeking help for your son.
Avatar n tn
Thankyou RR. I do keep my eyes open where all of my children are involved .
The charm is manufactured usually to get him whatever he wants.
I have had him seen with his ped for encropresis . He takes a bowel softener and I have to monitor bathroom time with him.
I will keep trying to find help for Aaron, the problem seems to be that there is noone here in Dallas TX that I have been able to find with the knowledge to help him.
I think the things that concern me most ,( while our household is an active one and boys tend to be rough with each other) is that extreme rage and voilence Aaron exhibits and the amount of joy he seems to get from fantasizing about doing harm or harming others or animals when compared to the amount of joy he gets from the rest of his life.
The private joke in our family (between the adults) was for a long time that Aaron was a Mikey (from the old life cereal commercials) and just didnt like anything. Not a trip to Disney Land, not play, not mom singing him a song or reading a book or a new swingset or a trip to the zoo. Nothing ,
except swimming , so I installed a pool.
Aaron prefers to spend a good deal of time alone .
Also Aaron does things to get back at you if you punish him, example. Once I put him in time out and a few days later my cell phone dissapeared .
Months later when I went to punish him again he laughed telling me "you remember what happened last time? I threw your cell phone in the bottom of the garbage under trash .Lets see what happens this time." This is almost an exact quote , from a six year old .

Don't get me wrong , I love Aaron the same way any mother loves her son, bet deep down, he frightens me.

So, does anyone know where I should go next for help?
152852 tn?1205717026
How was he with regard to the death of the animals?  Was he defensive?  Did he deny doing anything?  How did he explain the deaths?  Is there a chance that it could have been an accident?  Was he sad or remorseful about the losses?

Could he be saying shocking things impulsively?  Could it be to get a reaction from you and others around him?

Has he actually started fires?  Has he hurt anyone with fire?

I am very surprised that FOUR child behavior specialists/therapists found nothing concerning about the list you wrote above.  What exactly did each of them say with regard to a diagnosis?  Surely they addressed your concerns some way.
Avatar n tn
Hello AM.
  In reguard to the death of the animals , A showed concern much later as an "oh I miss the animal." But would never admit that he was the one who had killed the animals. In reguards to harming animals at this point he will not admit to it even if he knows I saw him. He outright lies about it.

In reguards to his shocking statements, I originally thought the same thing and have thus trained myself after a time to have no responce positive or negative . Yet the statements reaccur , he does not seem to know that some of the things he says are anything other than normal. If I talk with him about this he becomes uncomfortable and will either act out violently , or reverse into a sugary sweet demeaner.

He has started one fire , which was quickly put out and noone was hurt. He has however stabbed one of his brothers with a colored pencil and another assortment of very questionable injuries .

The therapists always seem to come to a slew of conclusions i.e. could be this could be that ect. But no definitive diagnosis has been given to him . Largley they seem unable to comprehend that I am not overstating the things that have gone on with Aaron's behavior because whenever they seem him on Monday and Thursday he seems a very well adjusted child, sweet, thoughtful, quiet , even wounded at times . But this is only the Aaron at home or school sometimes and usually it garners him sympathy or gain. I think a larger part of the problem is that Aaron clearly "toys" with his therapists , it is obvious to anyone who has known him in a broad spectrum of his life that the "affect" he takes into the offices with him is NOT himself . He plays very well off others and turns it on to get whatever responce he is looking for at the moment.  
Aaron can be a very sweet lovable thoughtful child at times , but his actions concern me.

His pediatrician has tried to get me to put him on tester meds , just to see what happens and I have flatly refused as none of them have been approved for a child his age .
173939 tn?1333221450
I have no advice to offer but have been thinking about such behavior for a long time, triggered by a stalker that put a shadow on my life for a while. He was a very good looking guy but had a history of intimidating his own parents, attacking his ex-wife in an unsuspecting moment, poking his own brother with a knife, being sadistic with animals. He mostly got a kick out of getting people to trust him and then absuing them in one way or another. Main target women or whatever was perceived as weaker. Strangely enough I recently see similar behavior in a neighbor boy who is 7. He too is a very good looking chap but I already see him luring other kids away from the crowd to expose them to some kind of physical intimidation and violence. Many times I intervene but this boy is basically on an intimidation high around the clock. I have come to the conclusion that those behaviors are genetic and would require more supervision than anyone can give. Just like your son`s paternal grandfather may indicate. Maybe it is a gene combined with good looks...or maybe good looking kids are getting so much attention that they learn the game of manipulating early on. It just amazes me that psychiatrists are not familiar with these personalities as they appear more common than we thought. My only two cents are: while you keep doing your research on brain waves, keep your son with with strenuous physical activities like chiseling cynder blocks or rock climbing or wilderness tours. I think it could at least reduce the number of bad moments and maybe show him an outlet for this type of energy.
Avatar n tn
I'm so sorry. My 4 year old son has a behavioral disorder that sounds similar, but more mild, so I understand the failure and sadness you feel. Aside from your fear, you just want him to be happy, because there's so little joy in his life. My son killed a kitten two years ago,  showed obvious remorse over it, yet never really admitted that it was through any fault of his. He says he wants to kill people, but I don't know if he really understands the full depth of that statement. He's very vengeful. He'll remember the "wrongs" done to him, and do something that he considers equally bed back to you. I don't really have any advice for you, because I'm still trying to just figure out my situation, too. I mainly just wanted to thank you for posting this because it makes me feel not so alone. And I want to sympathize with you, because there are days that I cry my eyes out wishing that my son could just be normal and happy.
203342 tn?1328740807
Tinktronik, I was wondering. You said that your son plays off the therapists and doctors and acts differently at home. Is there anyway you can secretly videotape him at home without him knowing it? Then they could see how he acts in his home environment.
I'm so sorry you are going through this. You too, annkay. It must feel very frightning and lonely for you guys. I wonder if there would be any kind of support group or something you guys could check into?
When you mentioned that he stabbed his brother with pencil, it reminded me of my own childhood. I had a pretty bad temper and when my older brother or sister would tease me I'd get upset and go flying at them. I'm ashamed to say I stabbed my sister with a pencil once, a chopstick once and scissors once. So sometimes that could just be an anger problem with kids who have trouble controlling their emotions.
I really don't know what else to say except I'm so sorry you guys are going through this and I hope you can find the help and support that you need. God bless you both.
Avatar n tn
Thankyou A2. The problem I think that I have found is either that this very rare , or that people DO NOT talk about it .

Many times with A there is a seething anger there or it will blow up right away > but others, like with the pencil, he will wait a while (weeks) and just calmly walk up and strike. When asked why he will reiterate the actions three or four weeks gone.

There is also the habit of blaming the parents , and also the usually very true that kids with these symptoms have a horrible home life .My son does not , its normal with concerned adults .In specific, there seems to be little info online even fitting into Aaron's behavior.
Avatar f tn
have you thought about video recording his "episodes" and showing these psychologists??
Avatar n tn
I understand your reservation about medication.  I too had to deal with that situation when my son was diagnosised with ADHD/ODD.  He wouldn't behave in daycare and school but was good for us at home.  When I say good - I mean within what I felt were normal child limits.  Howver, his episodes of aggressiveness and anger at school/daycare were so totally out of the norm - it was obvious something was wrong.  My son too didn't exhibit any signs of this to his doctors - but did acknowledge he did these things but felt it was always someone else fault.  My main feeling when I read your posts is that allowing medication is a scary thing - the behaviors you describe are life threatening, to your child, yourself, his siblings, etc.  This is not normal behavior and I strongly urge you to seek treament options, even if they involve medication.  My son's doses are small enough that they have nearly no side effects but provide a ton of help to him in school and in a social setting.  I think you need to weigh your concerns over meds vs your concerns for you and your son (ie - you yourself are scared of him, he has the ability if he wanted to to hurt himself and others).
I wish you all the best... I hope that you can find your son the help he needs.
Avatar n tn
try video taping him while he is going about his day. Just don't let him know he his being taped. Put one is the boys rooms, and etc. That way you can get several days, weeks, etc. of his re-accuring behavior to show to the doct./therapist. But DON'T do it in front of your son.  That way the doc. can see what is actually going on. You may have to edit out periods of the day(s) where nothing is occuring, that way the doc. doesnt' have to sit through tons of "down time" on the tapes.  Good luck, and pray alot for strength and guidance. I really feel for you.
Avatar n tn
If A was my son, I would admit him to a pediatric mental health facility.  Once he was admitted and spending day and night there, his behaviors are bound to come out.  I would also try medication, b/c until he is old enough to change his own behavior or have the ability to reflect on his own feelings and actions, something needs to control his thoughts and behaviors.  He is a danger to your family and others.  His symptoms are not typical or something to take lightly.  I am a special education teacher and have worked with young children (0-8) for 14 years, please consider my advice.  kqshorey
Avatar n tn
Wow, I think it's admirable that you are so on top of things especially with 2 other boys to deal with. I think meds are good but you still need to find out what is wrong. He is still small and not to strong yet but as he grows he will be able to really hurt someone. Have you tried a diet change? Food can do harsh things to people. Low blood sugar could be part of it. My daughter gets very aggressive when she needs to eat and once she eats she calms right down- she is 8. Maybe there are many things going on that aren't all mental and are being overlooked and lumped into the general pot. I agree with the finding physical things to keep him busy and help him to vent. Maybe a punching bag could be used and teach him to use that when he is feeling angry. My heart goes out to you and I hope you get it sorted out. Keep on the doctors and don't let hem fall through the cracks. Doctors are good at waiting until it's too late before they really deal with it.
Post a Comment
Weight Tracker
Weight Tracker
Start Tracking Now
Child Behavior Community Resources