A distraught dad asked the internet whether he should tell his daughter’s soon-to-be fiance the truth about his little girl. Knowing her dark secret could affect the couple’s future, he wanted to know if he should fess up. You decide.
A dad, struggling with a tough decision, took to Reddit for advice. Under the username Pause96, the dad posted on the subreddit called “AmItheA**hole,” asking, “AITA for wanting my daughter’s boyfriend/soon-to-be fiance to know her dark secret before marriage?” Although the dad kept the identities of those involved anonymous, we’ll call him Larry, his daughter Rachel, and her boyfriend Matt for the sake of simplicity.
Larry, the father of a 25-year-old young woman who he loves “very much,” wanted to know whether he should tell his daughter’s soon-to-be fiance that there’s something he doesn’t know about the woman he hopes to marry. “I’ve been able to have a good relationship with my daughter and I enjoy my time with her,” Larry wrote before getting to the heart of the matter. “There’s one thing about her that would give many people pause — she is a diagnosed sociopath.”
His daughter’s troubled childhood as a sociopath:
Rachel was diagnosed with antisocial personality disorder (ASPD) when she was 18, and her troubling condition led to “odd, disturbing behavior” as a young child. She struggled heavily throughout elementary school, getting in a lot of trouble for lying, cruelty, and misbehaving. After seriously abusing her younger sister, Larry realized Rachel needed professional help.
Through an enormous amount of therapy and support, Rachel’s bad behavior was minimized as she grew older. Her aggressive behavior was tamed, and she became a law-abiding young lady with a decent job, a good education, many good friendships, and numerous male admirers. “She is very, very charming and adept at attracting guys and maintaining their interest. She uses that old dating guide ‘The Rules’ like a Bible,” Larry said.
His daughter’s relationship:
According to Larry, Rachel’s current boyfriend Matt, who she’s dated for about a year and a half, is “crazy about her.” Larry has also developed a “very strong relationship” with the young man, spending time with him regularly. “He is a great guy, very kind, funny, and intelligent,” Larry said. But, that’s where the good news about Rachel and Matt’s relationship ends.
“I doubt she loves him,” Larry realized after his daughter was open with him about her mental health, being a sociopath. During some “very honest, in-depth discussions,” Rachel told Larry “she doesn’t feel love or empathy towards anyone, even family.” That hasn’t stopped her from putting on a show when she feels it’s necessary, though.
Life as a sociopath:
Larry knows Rachel’s feelings are not genuine after she made a shocking admission following the death of one of her closest friends. Although Rachel appeared very sad and broken up during the funeral, she later told Larry privately that “it was all a put-on.” Rather than being upset, she admitted she felt “pretty neutral.”
Rachel “has never once felt guilty about anything she’s ever done” and “doesn’t know what guilt feels like,” Larry said. This is textbook ASPD, which is characterized by a disregard for other people. The symptoms of the disorder, which describe Rachel to a T, are a huge concern for anyone entering a life-long relationship with someone suffering from it:
- Disregard for right and wrong with recurring problems with the law, including criminal behavior
- Persistent lying or deceit to exploit others, using charm or wit to manipulate others for personal gain or personal pleasure, and displaying a lack of empathy for others and lack of remorse about harming others
- Hostility, significant irritability, agitation, aggression or violence, arrogance, a sense of superiority, and being extremely opinionated while being callous, cynical, and disrespectful of others
- Poor or abusive relationships, repeatedly violating the rights of others through intimidation and dishonesty
- Unnecessary risk-taking or dangerous behavior with no regard for the safety of self or others, impulsiveness, failure to plan ahead or consider the negative consequences of behavior or learn from it, consistent irresponsibility and repeatedly failing to fulfill work or financial obligations
Dad thinks his daughter’s boyfriend has a right to know she’s a sociopath:
Knowing all of this about his daughter, Larry highly doubts Rachel feels much of anything “love-wise” towards Matt, even though she’s sexually attracted to him and enjoys being around him. After realizing Matt, who has no idea Rachel’s a sociopath, might propose to Rachel, Larry became concerned for him. Making matters worse, Rachel has no plans to ever tell Matt about her diagnosis, fearing it will scare him away.
Believing Matt has a right to know, Larry pleaded with Rachel to tell him the truth before they marry. He’s even threatened to tell Matt himself, but Rachel doesn’t believe him. “She always responds, ‘I know you wouldn’t dare,'” Larry said. “I actually would,” he admitted, though, saying he would feel awful letting Matt walk into a marriage with his daughter while keeping her dark truth a secret. “I really like and respect this young man,” Larry explained.
Should dad tell his daughter’s boyfriend she’s a sociopath?
“I’m not trying to sabotage my daughter’s future. Maybe her boyfriend’s love of her personality and other aspects is enough that it won’t end the relationship. It’s his decision to make,” Larry said, “but he deserves all the facts.” The only question is, should Larry speak up before the two say “I do”? For Larry, the answer is yes. “He’s bound to find out she’s a bit ‘off.’ It can’t be kept a secret forever,” he said, but Reddit users struggled with the difficult decision.
Some admitted Larry is “ethically compromised either way” and he’s “damned if you do, damned if you don’t,” but many told him to “stay out of it” and let things play out naturally. Although a few did voice concern for Matt as well as any future children he and Rachel might have together. But, while everyone contemplated what they would do if they were dad, perhaps a better question is what would you want someone to do if they knew you were unknowingly marrying a sociopath?