Asocial: Definition And Behaviors Of This Psychological Disorder

Last updated by Katie M.

“That girl is totally asocial, she never comes to parties”. I’ve heard this kind of statement so many times, and sometimes even about me. I’m an introvert and prefer spending time on my own than being surrounded by lots of people in a noisy environment. However, that doesn’t make me asocial, because in reality it’s a serious psychological pathology. Many people don’t understand the difference and don’t truly know about this personality disorder. All will be explained.

Asocial: Definition And Behaviors Of This Psychological Disorder

What is an asocial person?

Asocial people are individuals who aren’t adapted to social life, or who are even opposed to it. We often make the mistake of saying an introverted person is anti-social, but they’re two different things ⚠️. As synonyms for asocial, we might use “marginal”, “antisocial” or even “sociopath”, because it goes beyond shyness and solitude. There’s a total break with the conscience of others.

👉 These words may sound strong, but in reality asocial people suffer from a personality disorder. It’s a refusal of social norms or cultural codes, it’s a pathology. So there is a particular behavior as well as symptoms that reflect an asocial personality.

How to recognize an asocial person?

Asocial behavior is not the same as being shy or reserved. On the contrary, there’s usually a lot of anger and violence in the symptoms associated with an asocial personality. They are unable to experience emotions and empathize with those of others.

👉 There are unhealthy, even dangerous behaviors:

  • Impulsiveness,
  • Irritability and aggression,
  • Absence of guilt or remorse,
  • A very unstable life (work, relationships),
  • Unawareness of your own safety and that of others,
  • Difficulties conforming to social norms,
  • Attraction to alcohol and drugs,
  • Recurrence of illegal or even criminal acts.

The causes of this pathology

Men are much more affected by this personality disorder than women (5.8% of men versus 1% of women). Dr Cancel, a psychiatrist and doctor in neuroscience, explains that genetic vulnerability factors and in particular life events may have had an impact on the personality. It’s not possible to establish a general cause for this pathology, but the patient’s life history often shows traumas and violence, particularly during childhood 🧠.

👉 A child who suffers psychological, or even physical, violence, will be more likely to develop this pathology. However, even without these facts, it’s possible to detect antisocial manifestations such as: anger, aggression towards other children and animals, increased opposition to parental authority.

What impact does it have on everyday life?

Unfortunately, there are major repercussion on the sick person’s life, but also on others who cross their path. There is a cruel lack of empathy and emotional intelligence to live in social harmony with others. Moreover, dangerous, even illegal behavior is at the heart of the asocial person’s life. As there is no awareness of social norms and respect for others, the asocial personality has no limits. This is why they’re also called “psychopaths” as they have no sensitivity.

⚠️ It’s often the judicial system that identifies an asocial person, after several offenses, and forces them to treat their mental illness.

How can you treat this behavior?

A sociopath will never seek help alone, it’s often constraint that leads them to start therapy. A diagnostic will be made by a psychiatrist, which will lead to medical treatment (or even psychotropic drugs) to calm the outbursts of anger and impulsiveness. Usually, cognitive behavioral therapy is proposed for this pathology in order to correct the behavior.

What to do with an asocial person?

It’s very difficult to help an asocial personality because there is no awareness of this personality disorder. Furthermore, they’re narcissistic manipulators who use their charms to achieve their ends. They to control others, which makes them dangerous for those around them.

👉 We therefore have to be extremely careful and be aware of this pathology. During moments of tension, you need to distance yourself to allow the person to calm down and to protect yourself. The best thing is to push the asocial person to seek help so that they can receive medical support.

Editor’s note: A pathology that needs to be treated

After reading this article, we hope that you’ll never again refer to a shy or introverted person as “asocial”. As you’ll have realized, it’s a psychiatric pathology that requires treatment. If you think someone in your entourage is suffering from it, make an appointment with a psychologist to talk about it and get some advice.

🤗 Understanding yourself, accepting yourself, being happy... It’s here and now!

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Article presented by Katie M.

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Ironically, this article mixes up two very different terms too. Asocial is not a synonym for antisocial. Asocial person is aloof, does not want or like interaction with people- but it doesn't mean lack of empathy and certainly doesn't mean being socially disruptive. In contrast, anitsocial person doesn't withdraw from society, can be very charming if they want to, but lacks empathy and respect for social rules.

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