‘Psychopaths and serial killers are not synonyms’: Diagnosed psychopath explains why people need to stop being scared she’s going to kill them

‘Psychopaths and serial killers are not synonyms’: Diagnosed psychopath explains why people need to stop being scared she’s going to kill them

“Psychopath” is such a cliched way to describe a criminal or someone in the wrong that it’s almost meaningless, and we’ve all seen endless depictions of psychopathic serial killers in movies and any network crime drama you care to mention. You could certainly argue this is a rare stigmatized condition that has yet to be challenged in a major way in mainstream media, simply because so few people come forward as diagnosed psychopaths.

They are out there, however — a 2022 study found that 1.2% of U.S. adult men and 0.3-0.7% of U.S. adult women have clinically recognized levels of psychopathic traits. One of those is TikTok user @victhepath, who purports to have diagnosed psychopathy. With over 200K followers on the app, Vic is making a name for herself as social media’s favorite psychopath, as most of her videos see her answer people’s questions about her disorder — which many see as simply another word for evil.

In one illuminating video, Vic hits back at the assumption that all psychopaths are serial killers. In response to a comment claiming that “86% of serial killers met the diagnostic criteria for ‘psychopathy,’” Vic explains why this fact is actually “very misleading.”

“Psychopaths and serial killers are not synonyms,” Vic stresses. “86% of serial killers might be psychopaths, but that doesn’t meant that 86% of psychopaths might be serial killers. If you don’t believe me, let’s do a comparison; 90% of murderers are men, but that doesn’t mean that 90% of men are murderers.”

Vic logically points out that the important thing to remember is that a psychopath would also need to be sadistic in order to become a serial killer, but sadism is not naturally “part of the criteria for psychopathy.” Psychopaths, she explains, are inherently always looking to serve themselves, due to their narcissistic and egocentric personality traits. “A psychopath who isn’t a sadist has no reason to go after people. How am I gaining from killing someone if I get no pleasure out of harming people?”

Vic’s account is a must-follow for anyone wanting to achieve a deeper understanding of psychopathy, with her other videos explaining how she maintains friendships, why she was a bully as a child, and sharing some of the techniques she uses to manipulate people in her everyday life. Due to Vic’s openness about her disorder, some are skeptical about her diagnosis, but again Vic has a fool-proof rebuttal for that.

In one video addressing why she’s so open about her diagnosis, Vic once again emphasizes that psychopaths will only do something if it benefits them. So, naturally, in most cases, telling people you’re a psychopath will not do you any favors. However, Vic admits that she has a clear “advantage” to owning her disorder — because it’s earning her “social media traction. I’m gaining followers, attention, and money.”

Are we due a redemptive depiction of psychopathy in pop culture? Personally, the only vaguely positive depiction of a psychopath on screen I can think of is Linda Cardellini as Kel Mitchell’s love interest in Good Burger, but even that character is hugely problematic. As Vic points out, though, with most people being left unnerved when they discover someone is a psychopath, I wouldn’t bet on it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *