Is there a difference between a psychopath and a sociopath?

Asked by: ladiesman
  • Yes, There Is

    I do not know about differences between the pathological disorders themselves, but I would assume that it reflects the difference between psychology, which focuses on the mental processes and structure of an individual, and sociology, which focuses on the mental structure and processes, relative to the surrounding society.

    If I had to guess, I think a psychopath possibly has an intensely personal disorder, likely stemming from personal issues and concerning individual experiences/relationships. A psychopath makes it personally, and reacts personally.
    Meanwhile, I'd imagine that a sociopath typically is at odds with a society or societal structure as a whole, causing the afflicted individual to see themselves as the black sheep, and I would expect that they use this to fuel hostility towards that outside society.

  • From a definitional standpoint

    Psychopaths and sociopaths are different in terms of how they are defined and their characteristics. Psychopaths don't know right from wrong, whereas sociopaths are aware of what is right and wrong, but they choose to do wrong. Psychopaths are born whereas sociopaths are made; their personality disorder is the result of negative sociological factors.

  • I have researched this,

    From what I know, a sociopath has emotion, but it dose not line up with most peoples, a psychopath has difficulty to say the least, with feeling emotion. Hollywood likes to use psychopaths as the main villains in the movies, but in real life, your more likely to get killed by anyone ells, rather then a real psychopath, who would most likely calculate that killing you has good odds of them getting caught, so they won't try to hurt you in a fit of anger, which is why most people get murdered.

  • Yes, there is a difference.

    A psychopath is calculating and precise; a sociopath is generally more erratic in their behaviors. When a psychopath engages in criminal activity, they do so in a way that minimizes risk to themselves; when a sociopath engages in criminal activity, it is often out of impulse and is largely unplanned. Psychopaths more easily blend in, often holding down jobs and even having loving relationships and families; sociopaths are frequently unable to attain any of these.

    But, beyond the difference in their traits, these "disorders" (to use the term loosely) arise from different factors. Psychopathy is genetic, caused by underdevelopment in the regions of the brain responsible for regulating emotions, whereas sociopathy is caused by environmental factors like abuse or childhood trauma.

    Of course, there are some overlapping traits between the two (disregard for rules, cruelty toward animals, etc.), but they're quite different from each other in a number of ways.

  • One is a real disease the other is not

    One can be traced to clear brain abnormalities in the frontal lobe. The other ether is caused by brain abnormalities that haven't been found yet, or is just someone with a different moral compass than yourself. I'd state which one is which, but I've encountered many sources that have flip flopped on which one is which. The problem is they have similar symptoms, but different causes.

  • From any standpoint its different ladiesman

    A psychopath sees or hears things that are not there or has beliiefs that are contradicted by reality. A sociopath is someone who has extreme antisocial attitudes or behaviors who cannot empathize with others and has no conscience. They are much different. Even physically there is a difference in how their brain works. A psycho paths brain appears to be working normally while a sociopaths brain works much differently than the normal brain. A sociopath cannot have a conscience but can actually have a morality. A sociopath can have a better morality than most people because they think instead of feel. The conscience is not spiritual it is just feelings that have adapted to what youve been told. A socio path doesnt have these emotions which allows him to view right and wrong much more clearly but usually doesnt care enough to be good. But some can be of them can be good and when they are they are usually have much better moralities than normal people or psychopaths especially. One knows reality better than anyone while one cant tell the difference between their imagination and reality.

  • They are interchangeable.

    The literal meaning of the words is different. Psychopath means one who suffers in the mind or one who is diseased in mind, meaning that his brain does not function the way a normal brain does. Sociopath means one who suffers in society, meaning that he acts in a way that is contrary to the normal way people act in society.

    However, I answered “no” on this question because these are pop culture words. There is no medical diagnosis of “psychopath” or “sociopath.” They are words we use in our culture, but they have no clear meaning in a technical sense. Therefore the words can be used interchangeably and there is no practical difference in the meaning of these two words.

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steffon66 says2015-08-21T18:11:08.197
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