I am inclined to believe that the reason psychopaths are so rarely self-aware or introspective is due to an average or below average IQ. Such is the case of Edmund Kemper. More on this later. Let’s talk about me.
For years I have known that I am more intelligent than the majority of those I come into contact with. My mother, despite her numerous flaws, did do something right in passing down good genes. She and my grandmother constantly made mention of how ‘smart’ I was, but what parent doesn’t?
It wasn’t until I was in my early 20s that I found out for sure whereabouts my intellectual capacity fit in amongst the world population.
In 2008 the company I worked for lost their government contract and a few of my coworkers and I were unceremoniously escorted out of the facility we worked in. Despite losing the contract, our employer was generous enough to keep us on the payroll for a whole year whilst awaiting a new contract to put us on. The only requirement was that we had to show up to the small headquarters building and sit there for 8 hours to do absolutely nothing. We all brought our laptops and/or books to pass the time.
I cannot recall exactly how I came to find it, but owing to my natural tendency toward intellectual pursuits, I happened upon the International High IQ Society website which claimed it could accurately measure a person’s IQ with a “scientifically verified” online, culture-fair test. At the time the test was free to take (they charge now… capitalists…tisk tisk) so I took it and scored high enough to be accepted. I even paid for the Lifetime Membership package. Membership perks were limited simply to forum access and a weekly email containing news and updates regarding the society and new member introductions. I didn’t bother with visiting the forum much at first.
I suddenly became fascinated with my own intelligence and wanted to see if I could score higher, so I took the test again. I did indeed score higher, but my score was not changed in the system. I promptly petitioned the website support team to change the score to reflect the higher one, but they refused.
I then searched around for other high IQ societies and found that there were plenty more like Mensa, Poetic Genius Society, and Giga; all of which had higher IQ requirements to join. They, however, wanted money to take their tests and after dropping $129 on the IHIQS lifetime membership, I was not going to pay again. I continued my search and came upon the Mysterium Society’s website. According to their site, if you passed the test, you were assumed to be in the 98th percentile or higher. There was nothing more that I wanted at the time than to know that I was more intelligent than at least 98% of humans.
I took their rather short test, consisting solely of number problems, and submitted my results. A few days later I received my official ‘welcome to the society’ email with a certificate signed by Monte Washburn attached stating that I scored high enough, in fact, to be considered in the 99th percentile.
I was also invited to be a part of their forum, email distribution list, and their closed Facebook group.
After scoring so highly I was satisfied and decided against searching for other bona fide societies to join. I began perusing the forums at the IHIQS website. What started out initially as excitement to speak on an intellectual level with others turned swiftly into genuine disgust at the dearth of authentic, intelligent conversation. I immediately knew I had been foolish to pay for a membership in the IHIQ Society.
Inspired by the thought that the Mysterium Society forum would offer a higher level of intellectual discourse (Mysterium requires an even higher IQ than the IHIQS), I started poking around there. To my dismay, I again found little that could be considered intelligent conversation going on.
I was disappointed and astounded that after months of surfing the forums, Facebook group, and genuine attempts at starting a discussion, I was getting literally nothing from these groups. And so I began my research into IQ studies.
Without going into much detail, I have come to the conclusion that the human mind is far too complex to accurately measure intelligence. Sure, IQ tests are on the right track, but their results are merely indications that someone is most likely smart, much akin to the fact that passing a polygraph most likely means you’re being honest. Are you really lying? The machine says you aren’t, but nothing short of being able to read your mind will offer definitive proof.
With that story out if the way, I have since prided myself on confirming my preconceived notion that I am a “smart” person. I’m certainly not up there with the likes of Christopher Langan, but what has he accomplished outside of being the world’s most intelligent bouncer? It seems that those with officially recorded scores well above the supposed genius level don’t really accomplish much in practical terms.
Discovering my intelligence was the catalyst that started me down the road toward a new depth of understanding and introspection, ultimately leading me to becoming a self-aware psychopath.
Even in childhood I was sort of aware that I was different than most people. I never liked to hang around or talk to kids my age. I considered myself to have been in a higher class, the adult class, if you will, since I can remember. Becoming completely self-aware in adulthood brought about a flood of memories and “it makes sense now” moments that have helped put some pieces of the puzzle together for me.
I discovered the monster inside.
If you’ve ever watched Dexter (whose character fits well with Willem H. J. Martens’ conception of a psychopath), you probably heard him make mention of his “dark passenger.” It was his way of describing his monster within.
I believe all psychopaths have it to some degree. It gnaws at us and rears its head to manifest itself in different ways. Some can control it, some cannot. I believe the more intelligent one is, the more he is able to resist impulse, the more he is able to keep the mask from slipping and revealing the monster behind it. This isn’t always the case, and Edmund Kemper is proof of that. He is estimated to have an IQ of around 140 yet he murdered at least 10 people. Whether his IQ was tested or not is inconsequential given that in his interviews he displays remarkable memory, vocabulary, diction, and a sophisticated poise that is only found amongst the intellectually well-endowed. He also shows a high degree of self-awareness which is demonstrated by the fact that he has asked that he never be released because he knows he will kill again. Thus, high IQ either endows the psychopath with some semblance of inhibition and impulse control, or it allows him to concoct more complex and elaborate schemes that enable him to get away with feeding his impulse without getting caught.
Serial killers (the stereotypical and quintessential psychopath in the public eye) absolutely fascinate me.
Kemper, Bundy, Dahmer, Gacy, Fish, and many more known and unknown, are all rather captivating in their own way.
Most empaths will even admit, although for different reasons and with a certain degree of reluctance, that serial killers are enthralling.
Bound by moral restraint, normies (i. e. empaths or non-psychopaths) react with often exaggerated disgust when it comes to talking or learning about serial killers and psychopaths. My reaction is typically profound intrigue as it pertains to the obvious similarities and dissimilarities in our “dark passengers” and ambivalence toward their crimes. What psychopathic serial killers do or have done simply does not bother me.
I feel somewhat superior to psychopathic serial killers in a way as I am able to control my inner urges while they seem to be slaves to theirs, unable to function for more than a month or so without another victim, another notch on the belt. Sure, I’ve lashed out in irrationally violent tantrums before, but most people have.
Admittedly I have had the urge to kill. That’s the primary inspiration for this post, to be honest. But I cannot recall simply wanting to murder at random as some serial killers have and will continue to do. Like Dexter stated in episode 1, I have standards. I also have enough sense about me to keep myself safe. Perhaps my narcissism is strong enough that, because of my own self love, I am not as willing to risk my safety and liberty to feed any murderous desires I may have.
What fascinates me most about serial killers is the mystery behind their motivations, their methods, their thought process, and the reasons they do the things they do. In reading their stories, I often find that my life story (especially my childhood) relates to theirs. What about their Monstrum in Animo is different from mine, though? Why am I able to control myself and keep my mask on while they cannot? What was it that pushed them over the edge? Will I ever end up like that? Do these questions and observations lend credence to the claim that psychopathy exists on a spectrum?