1640 O.F.F.S.

It doesn’t happen very often for me, but it’s very difficult to look someone in the eye and say “I don’t have feelings for you.” It may not even be that you have no feelings. Maybe they’re just not as strong, or not quite the same, or maybe you just don’t quite understand the nature of what you’re feeling. You just know that what you feel and what they feel doesn’t seem to match up. But you know it hurts to be told any version of that, and you feel bad for them, and maybe a little for you for not feeling that way too, so you can’t bring yourself to just say it. It may even be that you don’t love them romantically, but you don’t want them to quit you. It’s all very complex and irritating if you’re the kind of person who empathizes a little too much with others. Some people understand that it’s better yo do something unpleasant fast and start the healing quickly, or just don’t care about the other party involved, and just do the deed when it needs to be done. Of course you can also tell someone you don’t have feelings for them and they act like they believe you, but really they think you just need time to come around, or you don’t mean it, or you feel like you can’t admit your true feelings for them.
No matter how you slice it up human interaction is generally a pain in the ass for everyone involved. Except for sociopaths. They just bop through life not feeling any empathy. But this comic is not for sociopaths. I welcome those who try to read it, but I don’t think you’re going to have the emotional depth to appreciate it. Then again maybe you can use it to learn how to ape human emotion enough to better fool others. If you happen to be a sociopath who reads the comic I urge you not to become a serial killer. It will make people sad. I know you don’t understand the pain of others in a meaningful way, but it will likely end badly for you.
That’s right sociopaths, I’m looking out for you too.

I’ve been feeling a little sick on and off. I thought maybe I had a fever at one point, but I’m not sure. I’ve just been feeling a little sick to my stomach from time to time and hot in that way that you do when you’re starting to get sick, but it hasn’t rolled over to actually being sick. When stuff like this happens I always worry about my bad foot because this is what it felt like when the infection that messed it up in the first place started. It just felt like I was getting sick. Also, when it start to feel sick my foot tends to swell a little which makes me worry. Of course virtually anything I do makes it do that, but I need to do something just to try and keep my weight under control. I’ve been trying to walk enough to actually lose weight, but the foot always protests. Basically I always feel like I’m at war with the damn thing now. At some point I’m going to get the toenails burnt off. Maybe that will help. I can’t imagine having the toe fungus helps anything that’s for certain. Then again the damage of that procedure might make things flare up. Who can say really? In any event I’m far tired of the bullshit getting sick has caused over the last two years and how much it has crippled my ability to function properly on any level.
Of course it has forced me to find ways to keep doing things even though I feel bad, so it has, as the saying goes, made me stronger.


So I was pondering your comment about emotional depths and sociopaths. Then I started thinking of pregnancy and how you can have emotional roller coasters but also want to physically cut someone with a broken bottle… because they LOOKED at you.

So I googled “pregnant sociopath” … apparently one of the MOs of a true sociopath is that they find targets and get them pregnant. All sorts of horrible things happen from there on out. Not necessarily physical mutilation, but some use emotional manipulation to force someone under their control.

yeah, sociopaths are a big concern for mental health experts because they don’t experience the world the way other humans do, and it makes them very dangerous.

They’re certainly a volatile bunch, but we need them for situations where emotions would stall important decisions for too long. Trust me, we have those situations.

Being a sociopath and being able to make hard choices when they have to be made are not the same things.

Agreed. Ruthless people (or situationally ruthless people, at least) are good for what you describe, Brandon. Sociopaths in the true sense actually are not.

Some times the hard choices are better made with logic driven thought, but if star trek had taught me anything, it’s that logic is not the end all, and empathy can be more important in a leader than cold logic

Thinking of empathy + logic:
I think that [logic or empathy] is a big theme, in Shakespeare’s play: Titus Andronicus.

In the play, Titus is brilliant at tactics, as a military general.
He, Titus, is a fearless warrior.
And that is his fatal flaw- Titus can’t see that anyone can be afraid of his enemies…since he doesn’t fear them, so his enemies threaten Titus’ friends, and his friends help cause his downfall.
Or it has some plot like that.

I saw Titus Andronicus at the Stratford Ontario theater without any warning. I had no idea before I saw it what the play was about.

Let me tell you, Hollywood gore movies have *nothing* on Shakespeare.

An interesting question is what exactly makes a sociopath? Is someone with the inability to “feel” empathy who replaces it with intellectual empathy still a sociopath? Someone who chooses, in order to fit into society, to act as though they care despite not having the emotions that would cause them to actually care?
Is deciding to pretend to have empathy in order to fit into society a form of “cure” for sociopathy?

I don’t think it’s any more of a “cure” than straight acting for gays and lesbians (or the more extreme version, starting a family with a straight partner). In this case what you’re doing is to cater to society’s expectation to save yourself some uncomfortable forms of social interactions, at the cost of denying yourself internal complacency. Both can be processed logically, but aren’t actually emotionally fulfilling, though I wonder if psychopaths are really capable of deriving pleasure from control over others?

I think Reggie summed up the thoughts of anyone who realized someone they weren’t really into was crushing on them hard.

I love Reggie’s reaction. Partly because it seems like this is something he’s never experienced before, being the object of romantic attraction to two seperate people.

I relate to your first paragraph completely, and that’s happened in all of my past relationships.
For me, I just end up bogged down feeling that I need to end the relationship for myself, but I feel horrible having to say to it to them, leading to not doing anything for too long during which time both parties end up unhappy. I haven’t been in a proper relationship for about 4 or so years now, and I think part of that is that I’m kinda scared of ending up in that position again.
On the plus side, I’ve gone on to be friends with all of my exes afterwards, two of them are some of my best friends. So that’s good!

One of the kindest things a woman I was heels-over-head about ever did for me was give me a very firm, honest and direct “No, this isn’t going to work.” It gave me the shock I needed to actually pull up and begin looking elsewhere, which is how I ended up with Mrs. Freemage. Had I been left with ‘hope’, I wouldn’t have done that, and quite likely missed my opportunity.

I think something a lot of men don’t realize is that just as we look at a woman and think “nah, I wouldn’t want to have sex with her” (or at least not more than once), women look at us guys and think-before ever talking to us-ew, no I wouldn’t have sex with him, ever.”
A woman who-having looked at your body, smelled your odor, and heard your voice-has no desire to ever have sex with you can still befriend you, enjoy hanging out with you, and care about you as a person. Don’t let yourself think that this would ever lead to her changing her mind about sex, or any relationship. Before you think otherwise imagine that fat girl who is balding, has a mustache, and whose face is not quite symmetrical, and imagine growing to care so much about her that you want to have sex with her. You can’t? She can’t either, it isn’t going to happen.
This can occur even if you are objectively more attractive than the woman you are hitting on. There are a number of elements of what we call “chemistry,” and women tend to be more selective than men. Among other things, a woman will without even knowing avoid men who have similar immune system responses. If she has children with a man whose immune system is different, there are good chances that half of her kids would survive a plague that would kill her, and that her man would also survive to take care of the kids. Scientists have shown that women can actually detect those differences by smell, no matter how much perfume (“cologne”) you wear. If she smells a similar immune system, nothing you can do will make her attracted to you.

That sounds suspiciously like the scientific ground behind “Opposites Attract” or possibly what I heard so often while dating, “Dude! Give up. She’s just NOT into you.” …. Now that I think about it; possibly both.

Also, sociopaths: Don’t become a serial killer because the cops will spend a lot of effort trying to find you, and you won’t like it if they do. Go for a lower-profile crime model.

It hurts people when I kill them? I thought I was just trying to help get rid of their fear but they keep running into my knife repeatedly. Im not as high functioning as I thought. ;)

Yeah. And my sister keeps telling me to spend more money on [food], and less money on big, colorful, shiny knives, at the big knife store! ; )

I remember in another web comic, a sociopath met another version of himself from another parallel universe. The parallel one said “I collect lives and create the ART of pain!” The protagonist one said “Huh. I enjoy collecting antiques, myself.”


(Actually the protagonist one wasn’t what you would call an angel, but it’s complicated to explain and would be major spoilers so never mind. One of the pleasures of reading that web comic is trying to figure out what is really going on, and it’s complete now so you can binge-read it and find everything out if you want.)

It is possible for sociopaths to function in society without becoming dangerous threats. I’ve heard that a number of sociopaths are successful as surgeons. And supposedly a lot of CEOs are on the spectrum as at least partially sociopathic.

I’ve read some books about a sociopathic lady cop. She wasn’t evil, just unemotional and therefore tackled problems differently. She was trying to work on understanding emotions, and had gotten a cat (named Nose) to try to understand people’s attachment to pets. Anybody know the name of this series of books? I’ve forgotten.

Is the first book- Mallory’s Oracle by Carol O’Connell?

I think the cop, in this [1995?] novel, is named: Kathleen Mallory.

I think “Mallory’s Oracle”, is the first book in this series of K.M. novels.

P.S.- the above is from my casually looking for the woman cop + the cat [characters], online.
I don’t know if a cat, named “Nose”, is in these novels.

In any given relationship between any two people, it is highly unlikely that:
1. Both parties feel precisely the same quality and quantity of affection.
2. Both parties possess precisely the same libido.
3. Both parties have precisely the same tolerance and patience for irritating flaws.
4. Both parties occupy precisely the same spot on the introvert/extrovert spectrum.
5. Both parties hold precisely the same philosophies concerning religion, politics, children, pets, housework, and money.

Whoever is on the advantageous end of #1 is obliged to be exquisitely gallant *as well as* fundamentally honest and honorable. (Practice abundant kindness and consideration while waiting to see if your end of the relationship catches fire; but don’t exploit someone who adores you as your booty call until someone you adore comes along. Give it about six months to catch fire; then end it gently but firmly; you don’t have the right to waste any more of the other person’s time.)

Numbers 2 through 5 require lots and lots of negotiation, with earnest goodwill and transparency on both sides.

I follow your reasoning, and I’m genuinely amazed someone can be as convoluted and in depth at logically deducting the intricate nature of human relationships in a manner similar to myself.

I applaud you sir

Please note that number 2 is not a deal breaker, but can lead to all SORTS of trouble, even without Ernest and good Will distracting her.

Oh Reggie.
Ha ha ha ha ha!
Well Bud…she’s grabbed the tiger by the TAIL, now.
What do you do NOW…dear fearless hero? :)

The good thing — if that’s the right way to put it — about sociopaths is that there aren’t very many of them, only about 4% of the population, per Dr. Martha Stout Ph.D., author of The Sociopath Next Door, and most of them are surprisingly unambitious, e.g. sponging off of compliant girlfriends until they get tired of it and other forms of low level antisocial behavior. That’s not to neglect the others who’s impact is more widespread and more destructive, but most of them just aren’t all that spectacular.

For the foot, some cheap variant of a stationary bike would probably allow you to exercise more without aggravating the foot itself, you’d just position the bad foot so you don’t flex the foot when you pedal.

so sociopaths don’t get empathy…

what is it if I don’t understand death?

someone dies, within two generations of me, someone that is dear to me, but when push comes to shove and the news is given to me “hey, this person is dead!”…

why don’t I feel anything? is it a coping mechanism or a symptom of some far worse mental instability that I am not really aware of outside of wondering if something is wrong with me?

I have four instances of this happening. always the same, always people I knew and had moderate or close relationships with. the truth… I may never know…

Deadened emotions after a traumatic event or death is not abnormal. It happens. It can happen for a good long time for some people.

If you’re worried, go see a mental health expert.

Ask yourself, do you feel other emotions? Do you get happy when you see a kitten or puppy? Do you feel a pang of sadness and horror if I told you that kitten or puppy was maimed horribly?
IF you felt the happiness or sadness you’ve still got emotions, your just not dealing with your grief. Happens to the best of us.


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