The Empathy Trap: Understanding The Sociopath-Empath-Apath Triad

The Empathy Trap: Understanding The Sociopath-Empath-Apath Triad

What this means in practice is that empaths have the ability to understand their own emotions, to listen to other people and empathize with their emotions, to express emotions productively and to handle their emotions in such a way as to improve their personal power.

People are often attracted to empaths because of their compassionate nature. A particular attribute is that they are sensitive to the emotional distress of others. Conversely, they have trouble comprehending a closed mind and lack of compassion in others.

Very highly empathic people can find themselves helping others at the expense of their own needs, which can lead them to withdraw from the world at times.

It is odd. Most of us enjoy watching films and reading books about heroes who refuse to go along with the crowd, which suggests there is something admirable about people who make a bold stand.

But in real life, watching someone raise their head above the parapet often makes the rest of us feel queasy. Most – the 60% majority – prefer the easy life. It was interesting to discover, when doing the research for this book, how often people see empaths in problematical terms.

Empaths use their ability to emphasize and to boost theirs and others’ well being and safety. Problems arise for empaths, however, when there are apaths in the vicinity. Empaths can be brought down, distressed and forced into the position of the lone fighter by the inaction of more apathetic types round them.

Read How Sociopaths Hook Empathetic People – With False Innocence and Appreciation

The sociopathic transaction

The Empathy Trap
The Empathy Trap

36 thoughts on “The Empathy Trap: Understanding The Sociopath-Empath-Apath Triad”

  1. Holy crap…I am the empath, swimming upstream and constantly fighting a seemingly losing battle. Other family members are apaths…just wanting to go with the flow, not create waves, and unconditionally love the disordered person simply because HE is ‘family’..even tho he has never felt like family to any of us…HE is a sociopath…

  2. Does anyone know if there are cases where a person can have a split personality with one personality being a sociopath and the other not???? Maybe I’m just desperate for reassurance that part of him actually was the man I thought he was.

  3. I can relate….didn’t know about sociopaths, narcissists, etc. or I could have known why things were gettin’ weird a little bit sooner. Every time I read something like this, more and more memories are released that corroborate my suspicions. As I look back on things, the red flags were there all along.

  4. This article had really helped me. Due to my experience with a sociopath and an apath I’ve since avoided getting close to other people. They destroyed my life, my confidence and my ability to be happy. For fun.
    The sociopath was abusing her son (under 5) and gradually allowed me to become aware of it. She really thought she had me completely under her control. So did not like it when I confided in my childhood best friend that I knew about it, and had to report it.
    Unfortunately for me my friend had already become the sociopaths apath, so she breached my confidence. All hell broke loose.
    From then it seemed that no one but me could see that this was actually about a child’s safety. A child’s childhood and development. It became about every little thing I’d ever been less than perfect in, and many nasty lies about me, mixed in together. She even went to so far as to cause physical injuries to another child to try to make out i had done it. I think she intended to blame every injury the child had experienced on me! At least that part of her plan didn’t play out.
    I was harrassed and beaten repeatedly by both of them for months. The police helped protect me. Social services tried to help the child. But i was their evidence gatherer and unfortunately i could no longer help the child.
    I had to just walk away. It was heartbreaking.
    12 years later i found the child in question. At age 7 his sociopath mother had stabbed him and he was raised by the care system. The lad’s a but messed up, but working towards being a good person. i still have nightmares.
    Thanks to this article i now know its a personality type (sociopath) and maybe i won’t be so scared of making friends any more.

  5. Part of personal growth is learning to set firm boundary’s on what you WILL and WILL NOT allow to effect/affect your daily life. Sociopaths produce a very unique energy field read. That should be every empaths giant red flag.

    1. I was attempting to keep it as a ‘singular’ as opposed to the multiples as each person is solely in charge of it. Pardon the mis-use but if that is all you can take from it, then you are probably correct. This page would not be for you.

  6. I've been gaslighted too many times to count. In the past I have been devastated and have felt exhausted much of my adult life, tho today, I am working hard on rebuilding. My question is, what are the warning signs of either sociopath or narcissist or both? My most recent gf was all about her. In ever way and it was if I simply didn't exist. It was crazy. I stayed only long enough to try to figure it out. After awhile tho, I realized that there was no figuring that out. It is time for me to make better choices.

  7. Strangely, when in High School I met a sociopath in training. He was a basketball player and charismatic. He was attracted to my being empathic, yet not as a victim, he sort of adopted me at seconds of our encounter. He probably collected me as one of his specimens wanted in his collection of people. He is still many, many years later a sociopath, only grown, in his 50s. We reconnected some years ago and by then he has become a fully grown and skilled emotional demon. Now, I am relieved he did not turn his budding skills towards me when I was a young empathic and so relieved now that I am also grown, I can deflect and eventually sever ties with him. Solid protection.

  8. Yeah. I've read about it. It's incredibly scary how right on all of it was. Now, that I'm aware, I'll never fall into this trap again. I know what to look for and I'll never blind myself to these particular warning signs again. Thanks for posting this. ❤️

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