One way a psychopath manipulates is by letting you think that you have the power in the relationship.
Jason Moss said of his correspondence with John Wayne Gacy in jail “I felt I was the one in control. I figured he needed me more than I needed him.”
Obsessed with the 18 year old kid who was writing a school paper on him, Gacy wrote Jason hundreds of letters. Jason Moss, who called himself, Gacy’s “last victim” experienced directly what it was like to be groomed and – on a prison visit where the guard conveniently disappeared – briefly trapped by a serial killer.
The techniques Gacy used to manipulate Jason and the other young men he victimized, were the same ones most psychopaths use. Jason Moss thought he was safe from Gacy because “logic had always been my favorite tool. I relied so much on logic myself, I was unusually susceptible to others rational arguments.”
And Gacy was a master at rationalizing away Jason’s concerns.
Sometimes normal people they believe they are intelligent enough to out-manipulate a psychopath, but psychopaths have a quality normal people do not anticipate. They have an almost supernatural amount of cunning. They are also natural born con-artists. They are expert at sizing up your strengths and weaknesses, and using that knowledge to manipulate you . They know what buttons to push.
So what red flags should you be on the alert for in deciding if you’re dealing with a psychopath? Arrogance is a good one. Signs of over-confidence, a cocky manner, a smug attitude. Also psychopaths are typically controlling individuals. They have a strong need to dominate others.
John Wayne Gacy, after his arrest, tried to take over the police interrogation.
“Now we’re going to clean up 38 something murders” he told detectives, as if he was the one in charge.
After meeting Gacy in prison, Jason Moss became interested in law enforcement, and went on to have a promising career. But Gacy’s dark energy had crept into his psyche. Perhaps it was because he had seen the world through the eyes of this evil man, he lost his will to live, and in his early 30s he committed suicide.