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Do I Have An Anti-Social Behavioral Disorder?

I am 16, and from the age of 13 and younger ive shown no signs of having any anti-social behavioural disorders. Lately, however, i have recognised how little i truely care for others or how little remorse i feel in any situation. I must comment that i do feel as if i have a certain love towards dogs and often at times feel anxious and shy in social encounters. This, however is mostly due to the fact that i am uncomfortable being around people and social encounters are often followed by explosive bursts of rage. My speculations have mainly arrived through the fact that i have noticed that i am distinctly socially different from everyone else, and often feel nothing when others around me are crying, laughing or chatting. I also have a strong urge to be in a position of power, always aiming to be in controll of people and their actions and to be ontop of social encounters, remaining one step ahead. This is often made difficult, however due to my inverted personality. I myself find it strange that i feel so jelous and so eager to be in control when i care so little about these people or the things they say and do. Although i have grew up in a loving, stable family, often find myself laughing at jokes and enjoying tv shows, and feel as if i could never hurt an animal (although i have no problem with hurting humans), is it possible that i have an anti-social behavioral disorder such as sociopathy? I understand that i may not have included enough information, but with nowhere to turn, i eagerly await some sorts of answers.

As you noted, it is impossible to provide definitive answers about a diagnosis over the internet. Generally speaking, everything you have described could fall within the confines of normal teenage development.

You described how little you “truly care for others or how little remorse” you feel in situations. To know that with certainty would require a deep analysis of every situation. If you find yourself in the presence of people you don’t know then it logically follows that you would have no reason to care much for them. That alone does not make you a sociopath.

Then there is the issue of remorse. People typically feel remorse when they’ve knowingly done something wrong. They feel guilty. Perhaps you didn’t do anything that would require your feeling remorse.

Your said that you are uncomfortable being around people in social situations but you also described yourself as an introvert. Introverts are shy. They feel uncomfortable in social situations. They don’t like being shy and wish they weren’t. Your anger might be the frustration you feel for being shy.

Feeling jealous and having a desire to control others is also a fairly common trait among younger people. Jealousy, because their self-esteem is still developing. People develop self-esteem through life accomplishments. Younger people are still working on those accomplishments and thus are still working on their self-esteem.

Younger people also lack a great deal of control. Their parents often rule their lives. The teenage years are the time when they are fighting for their independence. Eventually, as you become an adult, you’ll have more control of your life, and when that happens you may feel less of a desire to have control over others.

Of concern, are your explosive bursts of rage. It’s not the norm to be explosively rageful. Explosive rage can cause relationship problems as well as legal ones. This is easily correctable with counseling.

Without knowing you or your personality, and without being able to analyze your day-to-day behavior and feeling, any answer I would give would be pure speculation. You have asked very good questions and they deserve answers. The best way to do this is to meet, in-person, with a therapist. Understandably, at 16, it’s difficult to access mental health treatment on your own but it’s not impossible. You should ask your parents to assist you in seeking counseling. Another idea is to consult your school guidance counselor or your local church counseling services. These services are typically free of charge and your sessions are confidential.

I hope this helps in some small way. Thank you for your question. Please take care.

from Ask the Therapist

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