Those who are sociopathic or psychopathic may fit more closely with the mental disorder categorized as Antisocial Personality Disorder [APD]. This condition is most often characterized by low empathy and a general “pattern of disregard for, and violation of, the rights of others.” Generally this means that those living with APD demonstrate a failure to conform to expected social norms, laws and rules, generally lack remorse and may often be seen as being irresponsible, irritable, aggressive, and impulsive in their behaviors.
Sociopathy and psychopathy are often used interchangeably in clinical settings. Long ago, the cluster of traits that represent sociopathy and psychopathy were combined and inform the diagnostic criteria for Antisocial Personality Disorder. There is still great controversy in the field of personality of psychology on what the differences are between sociopathy and psychopathy. Due to the rarity of the conditions, it is difficult for researchers to find adequate and willing samples of people to participate to learn more.