Psychopath Father Pitted Younger Sister Against Me: How Can I Stop This?

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Joined: Fri Jan 05, 2018 8:48 am

Psychopath Father Pitted Younger Sister Against Me: How Can I Stop This?

Post by daughterof » Fri Jan 05, 2018 10:06 am

I am in my early 30s and the eldest child of 4. My sister and I were very close but my psychopathic father has successfully turned my younger sister against me by encouraging her to berate me and constantly label me as mentally unstable. I am a highly educated and successful, sane person and my role in the family has been as some say, 'the glue' that brings everyone together while willingly volunteering my time and effort in striving toward stability and peace during times of intense familial conflict. Due to the very vicious treatment by my father toward me and my sister, I have cut contact with both of them. My father recently returned to the home with my sister from their vacation to visit but before their arrival I left to a hotel. Life has improved significantly since I have cut contact with both of them. My sister is exhibiting the same psychopathic behavior as my father. Is there a chance that she could change since it seems her traits are learned? Is there anything I can do? Thank you in advance.

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Joined: Fri Feb 11, 2011 2:57 pm

Re: Psychopath Father Pitted Younger Sister Against Me: How Can I Stop This?

Post by Linda » Tue Jan 09, 2018 10:01 pm

Unfortunately, it often seems that those who are sane and represent "the glue" are the biggest targets to psychopathic individuals. Your abilities may be highly prized in the psychopath's mind. As a result, it becomes necessary to belittle the good in you. It appears that your father has done just that regarding your sister. Bullying and pitting one family member against another is a regular experience in family dynamics, such as the one you have described.

Typically no contact or "low contact," which constitutes no emotional responses in situations where no contact is not possible, tend to work best for non-disordered individuals. As you probably realize, they (the disordered folks) will engage if you give them they opportunity. However, in this case, you feel your sister can be changed, since it seems her behavior is learned, rather than inherent. It makes sense to believe then that if the behavior is truly just learned, contact may enhance or allow for a relationship that otherwise could not be. However, the question may be whether she was susceptible to such behavior as a result of inherited psychopathic traits of her own or not. It is difficult to say. It is important to remember that not all psychopaths score clinically high enough on the Hare scale to be considered psychopaths. That does not mean that there may not be some amount of disorder. Since a clinician cannot diagnose from afar and with limited information, it seems that you may simply want to weigh your options and make future decisions based upon her responses and subsequent behaviors, as it is difficult to know exactly what you are dealing with. So many factors determine human behavior.

Further, in behavior, there is something known as the extinction burst, which is where the undesired behaviors actually increase when specialists (or anyone) try to enforce boundaries or impose limitations that are aimed at changing the undesired behavior. You may experience this if you attempt to interact with her. If so, that is another consideration. Ultimately, you will need to decide what you feel is appropriate for your safety and sanity, as well as the good of your family. You may consider enlisting the assistance of a professional therapist who understands the unique challenges that accompany Cluster B personality disorders as well. We wish you the best and hope this has helped give some insight into a difficult situation.

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