10 Signs You’re Dating a Sociopath

Posted by in dating a dangerous man, dating after divorce, dating in midlife | 11 comments

Donna AndersonDonna Andersen is the founder of Lovefraud.com, a website that teaches people how to recognize and recover from sociopaths. She’s just come out with a new book called, “Red Flags of Love Fraud—10 signs you’re dating a sociopath.” She shared highlights of her book on this week’s radio show. If you’ve ever dated a sociopath, or want to make sure you never date a sociopath, please read on…

Red Flags of Love Fraud — 10 signs you’re dating a sociopath

By Donna Andersen

Yes, when it comes to relationships, everyone has issues, but some people have more than issues—they have personality disorders. Donna Andersen explains how to spot the true problem partners in her new book, “Red Flags of Love Fraud — 10 signs you’re dating a sociopath.”

Sociopaths are not all deranged serial killers. But they are social predators—both male and female—who live their lives by exploiting people, and some of their favorite targets are unsuspecting romantic partners. So what are the danger signs?

1. Charisma and charm. These people have appealing energy/magnetism. They never miss a beat. Who doesn’t want to be with someone who is charming?

2. Sudden soul mates. They seem to be the person you’ve always wanted to meet. They’re not. They study you and make themselves into the person they think you’re looking for.

3. Sexual magnetism. You may feel an immediate intense attraction. They have high levels of testosterone, which makes them highly sexual.

4. Love bombing. They shower people with attention and affection. He’ll call you a lot. You’ll get a lot of attention at first, which lures you in.

5. Blames others for everything. They will talk about their problems, and nothing is ever their fault. They blame their boss, their ex, their parents for all their issues. They don’t take responsibility for their problems.

6. Lies and gaps in the story. They tell big and small lies. They neglect to tell you things they should tell you like they’re married.

7. Intense eye contact. They look at you with a predatory stare. They’re checking you out for a ‘next meal’. It’s a creepy stare.

8. Moves fast to hook up. They move to quickly get sexual. They might be pushy about it.

9. Pity play. These people make you feel sorry for them. They tell you about their abusive childhood and their psychotic ex to appeal to get into your heart and under your skin.

10. Jekyll and Hyde personality. One minute they love you, the next minute they hate you. You have no idea how this happened. It’s totally confusing.

Check out Donna Anderson’s website, LoveFraud.com to join her community of people who have been victim to love fraud.

Have you been conned by a lover? Please share your story below.



  1. met a man on match.com who said he was divorced 1 year from an 18 yr marraige and 53. I was 39 and really wanted marriage, the white picket fence, and babies. He moved on me very fast, partly because he could have a hot young girlfriend and he was in his 50s. He asked me to marry him after only 6 months, I said yes. I did not get a ring, he made excuses about money but said we would get one. He taught me how to buy my first house, even tho I couldn’t afford it alone without his help on the mortgage, which I agreed to. That made me trapped and indebted to him but I figured, hey, we’re getting married so what’s the difference? Then I got pregnant. I figured we’d get married after the wedding since we were already living together a year at that point. Turns out after I had the baby, his mother told me he was still married to the wife he told me he divorced. There was never going to be a wedding because when I confronted him and he at first said everyone was LYING and that he was the only one telling the truth that he was divorced, he came clean. Said he didn’t want to lose half of his 401K or pay spousal support so he would never divorce and she was never the type to file for one. I kicked him out of my house that I couldn’t afford and got a loan mod to afford it. We share joint custody on our son ,and he promptly went back on match.com to say he is DIVORCED and now says his age is 50 when he is now 60. He’s still married to the same woman. Gross. Match doesn’t care, they just want membership money so reporting him did nothing.

  2. Lisa,

    Wow, what a story! I’m so sorry you had to go through that awful experience. This man certainly seems to be a sociopathic liar (*disclaimer: I am not qualified to diagnose him or anyone else, especially without having met him, but he’s bad news!). I believe that our greatest pain leads to our best growth. As painful as it was to have been duped by him, he was in your life for a reason. When you want something very badly, such as the marriage, babies, white picket fence, it’s easy to overlook red flags. And some people are so charming and such good liars, it’s hard to suspect that they could be dangerous.

    I’m shocked that Match.com won’t kick him off the site. Shame on them. Whenever I’ve reported anyone to the sites I’ve been on, they are usually booted off immediately.

    I hope your dating experiences have improved. There are definitely great men out there. You deserve a relationship with one of them. If I can ever be of service, please contact me again.


  3. I can understand why you’d think I was overreaching with charisma/charm as a danger sign. That’s because you are probably reading it out of context. Perhaps I wasn’t clear enough in my article, but the signs that Donna Anderson lays out in her book (I’m quoting her in my article) refer to a compilation of traits. The sociopath lures you in with charm and charisma, sexual magnetism, etc, and gets you under their spell (first 4 signs). Then, they come in for the ‘kill’ with the other 6 traits. People are often blindsided because they are intoxicated by the charm. Does that make sense?

  4. I used to have a girlfriend just like that …she fits pretty much in all these signs especially in sexual magnetism ,sudden soul mates and lying…. She is also very sexual aggressive and tends to attack her victims and to open her legs at the first possible moment …. I spent around a year with her before realizing I was totally conned and was being manipulated by her …She tends to surronund herself with other men to look like she is in-demand and to make you jealous .. and of course to torture you… It took me another 2 years to understand what was really going on …after 1 year she suddenly returned to her ex ..just to make mi sick …. nothing else …that was the purpose …after that she got rid of him as well… she wasseiing him during the 1 year she was supposed to be with me …. she may have ssen other guys but there is no way of knowing for sure … she was lying all the time … I didn’t know what to do beacuse I

  5. I used to have a gilfriend just like that … she had all of these signs especially the sexual magnetism , sudden soul mate and pathological lying ….She is also vey very sexual aggressive and attacks her victim at the first possbile moment ….usually in bars but not always ….;actually she is flirting with somebody almost all the time and likes to show off her tits and body because they are almost perftect …. I was going out a year with her before she returned to her ex…. that make me sick of course .. . then she got rid of him as well… the problem was that after a year I was so in love with her I didn’t know what to do …. I was like a sick for nearly 10 months after she was goign out withe her ex again … I fell in love with her because she was looking exactly as my soul mate only to turn out it was only a game …she was mirroring my charachter and behaviour so she can act the same way and lure me in …. after she succeeded in that she wanted to destroy me – through emotional blackmail and manipulation ….she is perfect manipulator …after she knows your’re hooked that’s where the real game begins……she likes to surround herself with other guys to look in high demand and to make the guy she is supposed to be with jealous and sick …that’s the point…by the way she had a friend just like her -again female… the same behaviour … few guys understand what they ‘re inolved in …and because the girl is quite hot they tend to go after her …. while she destroys another person … that’s pure evil in female form …after 2 years of reading books on psychology and studying personality disoders I connected the dots and I have the whole picture .. she’ll destroy a lot people the same way she destroyed me …the whole thing was theather , a big screenplay ..I was conned , used , and gotten rid of….. welcome to world of personality disoders – Cluster B ….

  6. makes perfect sense for me ..as I said in my previous post I experienced that first hand ….

  7. ALso what’s the difference between sociopath and psychopat ??? and do they have anything in common with narcisissm

  8. The definitions are similar, but according to the dictionary, here are the differences between a psychopath, a sociopath, and a narcissist:

    Sociopath: a person with a psychopathic personality whose behavior is antisocial, often criminal, and who lacks a sense of moral responsibility or social conscience.

    Psychopath: a person with a psychopathic personality, which manifests as amoral and antisocial behavior, lack of ability to love or establish meaningful personal relationships, extreme egocentricity, failure to learn from experience, etc.

    Narcissist: a person who is overly self-involved, and often vain and selfish.
    A person who suffers from narcissism, deriving erotic gratification from admiration of his or her own physical or mental attributes.

  9. I guess she is a mixture between psychopath and Narcissist …she definately has the psychopat traits but likes to leverage her body in order to look sexual ….so basically something like a psychopathic narcissist or hiostrinic narcissist … because there are histrionic elements in her behaviour as well…sometimes the symtopms are blurred … but she is definately not capable of loving….

  10. This is a great blog post. I have always had relationship issues and have started to follow the advice of Dr. Robi Ludwig. I saw her on a tv show once and I really appreciated her take on current dating issues. I found her on LinkedIn and I found this great article she posted about dating a sociopath and how to avoid dating them. I think it’s a good read and here is the link to the article: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/20141119004053-90395318-are-you-dating-a-sociopath

  11. Sasha,

    Glad you enjoyed this post. One of my missions is to help people choose healthy romantic partners. It’s so easy to fall for emotionally dangerous people, and it’s helpful to recognize the signs of those with giant red flags.

    I’ll check out the article you suggested.

    Best of luck to you.

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