(verb) Wearing our skin is what a psychopath does when he superficially adopts our values, attitudes, mannerisms, beliefs or other characteristics and presents himself to others as being “real”.
Usually, the psychopath chooses a person he envies, to imitate. He perceives this person as having some quality that gives them an advantage. He believes that, by taking on the person’s outward characteristics, he can assume this quality as well. He wants to become them.
The “skin” can include knowledge about a special subject. The psychopath likes to “pick your brain” for knowledge you may have, which allows him to present himself as an authority on a subject without making the effort to acquire any in-depth experience on the subject. Authorities always attract psychopaths. Psychopaths are attracted to power and authority because they intend to steal or at least borrow the power.
A psychopath often appears unusually knowledgeable on a variety of subjects. It seems as if they have lived many lives in the period of time they’ve been alive. They can regale you with anecdotes about their adventures and their expansive knowledge. You feel you’ve met a unique and amazing person who has done and seen so much. The truth is, they are describing many lives, but not all of them are theirs. Their past is an amalgam of truth, fantasy and somebody else’s skin all incorporated into the psychopath’s amazing story-telling ability.
Because the psychopath is a predator and a hunter of human beings, he naturally needs to take a trophy or talisman to keep from each of the prey he’s consumed. Often times, it is not an object or a picture, but the “persona” of the victim. This especially applies in the case of identity theft, credit and banking scams or other criminal activity where the victims wealth and status is reduced while the psychopath’s standing is increased.
The wearing of a victim’s skin parallels the sacrificial rituals in some tribal religions, in which a sacrificial victim is murdered, flayed and his skin is worn by the priest or king. This ritual behavior allows the priest to take on the persona and therefore the power of the murdered victim who is now considered to have supernatural powers because his sacrifice appeased the gods. In a similar way, the psychopath “commemorates” his victims by assuming their personas to impress his new dupes.
The psychopath’s need for wearing our skin is triggered by shame and envy. The psychopath feels inferior to the victim he envies. Through the process of projection, he rationalizes that if he is able to take the victim’s skin, it is because the victim was weak and deserves to be skinned.« Back to Glossary Index