Mental Health


Mandy Kloppers

People with no empathy

People with no empathy
People with no empathy


It really hurts when someone that you once respected, that you thought would do the right thing, shows their true colours and becomes vindictive and malicious. Unfortunately, it is an experience that many of us are familiar with. Today has been a crazy day of dealing with unscrupulous people and it got me thinking…

How can some people act in certain ways and seemingly have no conscience for what they have done? It really is amazing how people have the ability to justify their actions to themselves, even though what they are doing is despicable. How do they do it? I certainly would feel guilt if I carried on as they do.

My conclusion is that these people lack empathy. There must be a missing link or chemical reaction in their brains that facilitates anti-social and passive-aggressive behaviour. All that matters is there way of seeing the world and they do not have time for emotion. The two people in question both lack social skills to the extreme.

They do not have a large social circle and find it hard to socialise and make small talk. They never talk about feelings and everything is calculated and analysed in a functional and practical way. Decisions are rarely made according to an emotional state. They also seem to have an inability to put themselves into someone else’s shoes and imagine what life must be like on the receiving end of their vile behaviour.

Life, and everything they do within it is seen as a means to an end. I guess we all know someone like this. Due to my profession, I have come across many characters like this and it is usually futile to try and persuade these people to tune in emotionally or try to empathise. They just don’t know how to. Often though, they do not realise that they possess an emotional deficit..but they are easy to spot.

Lack of empathy is one of the most striking features of people with narcissistic personality disorder. This is exacerbated when the person has a touch of antisocial personality disorder. People are seen as tools to be used. No one cares what a nail and hammer think..until they stop working. Then you replace them or fix it.

People who lack emotion have often learned this behaviour from their childhoods. Perhaps their home life was so volatile that they learned to shut off from their emotions as a defense mechanism. I have also known others who have no empathy due to the fact that everything at home was always “fine”. They never saw any conflict, any sadness, they were so protected that they did not learn the natural emotions and the life skills to deal with normal human emotion.

Whatever the reason, these people struggle to have truly warm, affectionate relationships. They do not know how to connect and bond and their relationships are more often than not, functional and practical.

If you know someone like this, don’t try to change them. Accept that you will probably never get your emotional needs met by them and find alternative sources of emotional support.

When you know what you are dealing with, it becomes easier to manage.

Mandy x