Female sociopaths and narcissists are dangerous precisely because their manipulation often flies under the radar. Although there is an ongoing debate about the definition of “sociopath” versus “narcissist,” it’s safe to say that both types exhibit the following:
- A callous lack of empathy.
- A tendency to manipulate and con others for their own gain.
- A sense of egocentrism and excessive entitlement along with blatant disregard for the rights, needs and feelings of others.
Sociopaths and narcissists on the high end of the spectrum take it one step further. Those who meet the criteria for the Dark Triad (narcissism, psychopathy and Machiavellianism) often lack remorse for their destructive actions. They use cognitive empathy to assess their target’s vulnerabilities but they lack the affective empathy to truly care about the welfare of others. They are often sadistic in provoking and deceiving others, feeling pleasure at the sight of another’s pain. Studies show that these toxic types experience positive feelings when seeing sad faces (Wai & Tiliopoulos, 2012).
The reality of their malice becomes darker when we consider that females are socialized by our society to be covertly aggressive. As a result, they are more likely to bully others through underhanded methods such as relational aggression – abuse through sabotage of someone’s social relationships and reputation – all while mastering the guise of a sweet exterior.
Here are six signs you are dealing with a female sociopath or narcissist on the high end of the spectrum:
1. They mirror and love-bomb you in order to get information.
When a female sociopath first meets you, they are on a mission to collect as much information about you as possible. The female sociopath is assessing whether you’d make a good target. As her unsuspecting victim, she ‘zooms in’ on you with an excessive amount of attention. Her warm and nurturing façade helps to facilitate her covert machinations. On the outside, she is friendly and inviting, but within, she is vindictive, ruthless and cunning. Yet in the beginning, it’ll appear as if you both have so much in common.
She’ll play to your sympathy and pity by pretending she has similar life experiences as you. She’ll claim she has similar interests, hobbies, passions, life goals and values. Little do you know, this is a cold and calculating gesture used to find out as much as possible about your strengths and weaknesses so she can exploit both to her advantage. Under her hawk-like gaze, the female sociopath mirrors you to win your trust and to make you disclose personal information that she plans to use against you.
In the initial stage, she will build for you a beautiful pedestal so that you’re tempted to buy into her con. Once you’ve sufficiently invested in her false mask, she has no problem using you and your resources for her own gain. Whether it’s sex, money, a place to live, status, reputation, fame, or even just the duping delight of one-upping someone – it is all about power.