How Empaths Are Trapped in Relationship with Sociopaths

Empaths Trapped Relationship with Sociopaths

Sociopaths lack empathy. This is why they often target empathetic people by hiding who they truly are and manipulating them for their own self serving purposes. Let’s take a look at how sociopath relationships exploit the empaths.

The empath trap

Erin Parisi, a licensed mental health counselor, writesWhile ‘sociopath’ is not a formal diagnosis, sociopaths typically have some (or all) of the characteristics of antisocial personality disorder and/or narcissistic personality disorder.” 

Sociopaths trap empaths by pretending to be charming, innocent, loveable and insecure. They pretend to be broken and devastated and hook empathetic people by deceiving them. Empaths, believing, they can heal them, become easy targets for the psychopathic and narcissistic sociopaths. However, a relationship with a sociopath always ends with the empath being manipulated, broken, abused and exploited. Licensed clinical psychologist and author Seth Meyers, Psy.D. explainsThe sociopath typically emotionally destroys those who are close to him or her.” He adds that empaths suffer in sociopath relationships because they are responsible individuals who have “actual human feelings that stem from a deep sense of social obligations to others, a moral anchor that is supposed to be part and parcel of having relationships.

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

As the sociopath lacks empathy and emotions, the relationship quickly flips upside down from the empath giving attention to the sociopath, to the empath needing attention from them. Even before they realize anything, the empath loses their sense of self -worth and self-esteem to a person who completely lacks conscience.

How Empaths Are Trapped in Relationship with Sociopaths

Empaths are easy targets for sociopaths

Sociopaths often target the empath as they are highly perceptive, can empathize with others’ emotions, and express emotions in a healthy manner. Studies during the 1990s found a positive relationship between emotional intelligence and empathy. As empaths are highly compassionate, they are sensitive to the emotional problems of others. Jane McGregor and Tim McGregor, authors of The Empathy Trap, write that empaths have difficulty in understanding a lack of compassion in others. This is why they get trapped in sociopath relationships without realizing how it may affect them.

The authors explain “Very highly empathic people can find themselves helping others at the expense of their own needs.” They add “Problems arise for empaths, however, when there are apaths in the vicinity.” Sociopaths target empaths because they are their polar opposites and pose a big threat to their toxic existence. Weirdly enough, empaths are the greatest foes and the strongest attraction for sociopaths. The sensitivity and response of empaths provide a source of entertainment for the sociopaths, which they can abuse later.

Read also: Empathic People Are Natural Targets For Sociopaths

Toxic attraction of sociopath relationships

What starts as a beautiful, loving relationship quickly turns into an abusive one. When they first meet, the sociopath shares their fabricated sob stories with the empath to make them feel sorry for the narcissistic psychopath. They tell how they were abused by their ex, how emotionally broken they are. How insecure and afraid they are of love and how unfulfilled and unhappy they have been until they found the empath. These sob stories are delivered in a way to make the empath fall in love with the sociopath, even if the empath doesn’t find them attractive to begin with.

Being naturally compassionate and caring, the empath feels a strong sense of empathy to help and heal the disguised sociopath. And so they move one step closer into the trap and lower themselves down to lift the sociopath. But this rarely ends the way they had envisioned. Initially, sociopath relationships appear perfect. The constant appreciations, attention, love bombing and the positive energy makes the empath feel happy that they are changing the life of the sociopath for the better. Eventually, the empath begins to mistake their kindness and compassion for them as love and becomes obsessed with healing the sociopath’s insecurity.

Read also: 7 Signs That You’re Dating A Sociopath

How Empaths Are Trapped in Relationship with Sociopaths

28 thoughts on “How Empaths Are Trapped in Relationship with Sociopaths”

  1. Great article from experience.Also any addiction both or one steps up the cruelty I would love to read on your child being sociopath . I did get 4 tips on how to block the actions but my experience is they become much more angry. And in order to stop them you have to keep a distance and that heart breaking for a parent

  2. Im on my way out right now. Unfortunly we got a child 1.4 y old.. I saw some of this before and made boundories and though it worked but now I know better. I will tell her the only way we can have a chance in the future is If she goes and get a diagnose and do teraphy but Im not sure I be willing to risk it..

  3. I wish these textbook types were discussed in open forum!! Growing up I watched it play out on all levels!! The sad thing is I was ” familiar ” W that type? Just hadn’t quite registered that history was repeating itself.

    1. actually is like this, we really mean and think those things when we say them (thats why they are so real), just it can be that in next day or after a month we will change our mind, nothing is forever live in a moment thats all i can say.

  4. This is a really good read and very interesting, insightful.

    I didn’t fancy my narc when i first met him, he had used old pics of himself (despite only being 30 he was obese and used pictures that didn’t represent this) and after we split he asked me if i found him attractive, i actually told him i didn’t but over time i fell in love with him and thought he was the best looking guy in the world…not sure i should have revealed that to him or why he asked, it doesn’t matter anyway, focusing on understanding and healing myself now. He did used to talk to me as a child sometimes, i found that a little strange but overlooked it because everything else seemed so perfect, now (after gathering much information) i can see all the ways i was manipulated and know i shouldn’t make excuses for, or rationalise, any behaviour that triggers uncomfortable feelings in me.

    I am struggling with the split – despite not even wanting a relationship when i first met him, he called me a lot and texted me a lot, every day almost, plenty of times a day, whenever his girlfriend wouldn’t know really (yeah he ‘forgot’ to tell me he found someone else while we were together and was still with her after i dumped him and he was pretending to get me back, i say pretending because everything about him/our relationship isn’t real) but i feel addicted to him and miss him a lot because he spent over a year love bombing me and manipulating me and all that time it felt good between us. I try really hard to focus on the truth, that he’s not what i have built up in my mind from all the lies and manipulation he did to me, this helps immensely, but still i feel extremely sad, and miss ‘him’. I really miss the fake him so much. He’s not real though and i know he’ll make me unhappy, this is why i dumped him in the first place and never got back with him whenever he asked me to. I lost myself in the process, trying to find me again is hard at times, but i’ll get there…wherever it is i’m going…and articles like this really help me get everything in perspective.

    1. Everything you said I went through the same. But for 10yrs. I’m struggling day by day. I’m taking one day at a time.

  5. ASTOUNDING ….. hard to believe how many people fall for this tripe.

    Soooo convienent that for many of you, this article describes EXACTLY how you dishonestly wish view your ex.

    Because when THEY are the ( INSERT LABEL HERE ) it makes YOU the angel.

    I question this ‘themindsjournal’ its not the first time I’ve seen them peddling divisive labels. I’m sure it wont be the last.

  6. I could have wrote the 1st part as the exact start to my relationship with a narcopath, everything was said to me and I fell for it, but this ‘quiet mistreated nice guy’ turned out to be my worst nightmare, it was all an act for his children, family and friends, looking like he was living a ‘normal’ life when infact he was a predator, and still is.
    Once I saw all the sick pictures of him and what his ‘ring of friends’ had taken and sent him for his collection I was out of there as fast as anything! I can’t tell you all what I felt like knowing I loved a sick monster but boy does life get better once their gone

  7. Now i don’t need to go to Psychologist i guess. It answered all my questions. As if it was narrating my story. Yes i moved on but when i bounced to another it seems another encounter of a psychopath again. Like i ended up asking myself, what is it in me?, what i did wrong?, or im just born not to have a good partner

Comments are closed.

Scroll to Top