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The Sociopathic Parent

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The typical sociopathic parent is deceitful, irresponsible and indifferent to others' feelings. Lack of remorse for wrongdoing and impulsivity are commonly held traits.



Sociopathic parents lack a moral compass. They have a marked disregard for the rights and feelings of others. They are generally insensitive, manipulative, sneaky, dishonest, cold, and very much "out for themselves". They have been described as "lacking the full range of human emotions" or having nothing other than self-interest and anger. Families of antisocial parents are often among the most highly dysfunctional and abusive.

Not all sociopathic individuals (also called antisocial) present as the same. Though many people associate the word "antisocial" with "criminal", it is important to note that a significant number of antisocial individuals are not criminals. Of those who do commit crimes, there is no single "type". (They may be highly-respected CEO's who quietly embezzle company funds and are never suspected of wrongdoing, or reckless small-town troublemakers the police know by name.)

Some sociopathic people draw lots of attention and are more obviously and evidently problematic, and others are quietly cold, controlling, uncaring and self-centered.


Parents with antisocial personalities do not truly care about their children. Many (though not all) of these parents can be deliberately hurtful to their children, family pets, and others they perceive as being defenseless. A lack of empathy and very low/no consideration of others is typical, a kind of cool, quick, self-focused insensitivity is often seen.

Because personality disorders exist on a spectrum and in varying severities, in the best of situations, children of more mildly antisocial parents may be neglected and more subtly emotionally abused, and those with more heavily antisocial parents are severely neglected, emotionally abused and/or cruelly beaten. Many antisocial parents have a selectively controlling, unaffected nature. Some can explode in fits of rage, especially when they feel they are not getting what they want.

Children of sociopathic parents are often among the most highly abused and disempowered. The dysfunctional family environment typically created by sociopath parents is devoid of true caring and support. Many of these children learn to hide when their parent is angry, smile when their parent wants to look good, and watch every move made in attempts to avoid becoming an emotional (or physical) target. 

Many children of sociopathic parents know and understand that their parent is someone who, deep down, doesn't really care about them, may well be someone to avoid, or someone who minimally
, will not bother helping them, except en route to personal gain. By the time they reach adulthood, the typical child of an antisocial parent has been deceived, manipulated and used, and has been made to feel invisible, valueless and frightened countless times.

Recent research has begun to uncover some physiological
components to this disorder. There is no clinical evidence that either psychotherapy or medication are significantly effective treatments for AsPD. Click here for more...

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