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The Abuse Excuse | Let me off the Hook – I Had a Bad Childhood

The Abuse Excuse

Let Me Off the Hook

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“He told me he had an abusive childhood. So that’s why he behaves this way. I have to be patient. He doesn’t mean the harsh things he does and says. It’s not his fault.”

Individuals with callous-unemotional traits that span throughout childhood tend not to be as affected by environmental stressors. Therefore, when a psychopathic mate tells his/her partner that childhood abuse is the reason for their lack of empathy, they are either unaware of the primary underlying contributors to their personality problems or they are engaging in intentional deception (if they have primary psychopathy).

“I was abused as a child, so it’s not my fault that I … (insert unacceptable, damaging or dangerous behavior here).”

Regardless of the circumstances in the childhood home (even from a warm, loving home), the primary psychopath was predisposed to interact in a malignant manner.

Without the proper neurobiological foundation for social and emotional development, they proceed through life with the patterns we know to be psychopathy – callous, unemotional (in situations that call for certain emotional responses), nonempathic, exploitive, manipulative, arrogant, and remorseless.

Typically from childhood, primary psychopaths cannot develop normal social abilities in the presence or absence of childhood abuse.

It’s the reverse for those without a history of psychopathy. A child with no callous-unemotional traits, who is exposed to abuse, will be prone to heightened sensitivity (toward self and others). Some will develop PTSD. However, such individuals will also be more apt to behave in a caring manner toward others (or at the least demonstrate sensitivity).

 

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