Donna Andersen joins us on Mental Health News Radio to discuss her advocacy regarding recognizing and recovering from narcissistic, sociopathic, and psychopathic abuse.
How did you get involved with educating people about sociopaths and other personality disorders?
I found out about psychopaths the hard way — by marrying one. Because of my experience, in 2005 I launched Lovefraud.com, to teach people how to recognize and recover from people with exploitative personality disorders. Since then I’ve collected more than 5,000 cases of people who have been involved with individuals who they now believe are disordered. When I talk to the survivors, what I hear most often is, “I didn’t know people like this existed.” They do.
Why did you fall for your con artist husband?
He was charming, kind, and swept me off my feet. He engaged in love bombing, like so many predators do.
How big is this problem? How many disordered people are out there?
The predators I am referring to are the approximately 12% of the population who have serious personality disorders. Technically, they’re the psychopaths, sociopaths, antisocials and narcissists. They are all exploiters and manipulators, and will victimize, in one way or another, just about everyone who crosses their path.
Why do you think people don’t know about personality disorders?
I want to expose the biggest skeleton in the closet of the human race. Here it is: Millions of human predators live among us. They look like us, they talk like us, but they are out to exploit us. Nobody tells us this. In fact, what we hear all our lives is, “Everybody’s created equal,” and “there’s good in everyone,” and “we all just want to be loved.” Well, these statements true for 88% of the population, but not for the other 12%. And believing these statements turns us into sitting ducks
Why did you launch Lovefraud Continuing Education?
My colleagues and I have launched Lovefraud Continuing Education, a new clearinghouse for online courses about exploitative personality disorders. These courses are for people who want to protect themselves, people who have already been targeted by these manipulators, and for mental health professionals, who want to know how to help their clients who have been victimized.
Who could benefit from courses on Lovefraud Continuing Education?
We want to shine a bright light on humanity’s dark secret — that some people don’t care about trust and cooperation, and are only interested in power and control. Our goal is to teach people the warning signs, and if they’ve already been caught in the web, help them escape and recover. Learn more at Lovefraud Continuing Education.
Donna Andersen is author of Lovefraud.com, a website that teaches people to recognize and recover from sociopaths. She is also author of Red Flags of Love Fraud—10 signs you’re dating a sociopath and the Red Flags of Love Fraud Workbook. Donna learned about sociopaths the hard way—by marrying one. She tells the whole outrageous story in her first book, Love Fraud—How marriage to a sociopath fulfilled my spiritual plan. Donna has collected more than 5,000 cases of people targeted by sociopaths. She has presented research on sociopaths to the Society for the Scientific Study of Psychopathy. She is the program administrator for Lovefraud Continuing Education, which offers continuing education about personality disorders for survivors and mental health professionals. Donna has appeared on television shows including ABC News 20/20, Who the Bleep Did I Marry?, My Life is a Lifetime Movie, Handsome Devils, Urban Legends and The Ricki Lake Show. She has been interviewed for radio shows, print articles and web posts. Many Lovefraud readers thank Donna for saving their lives.