Life as a Social-Sexual Deviant
A serial college campus rapist drew the adjacent image to illustrate his life as a social-sexual deviant. He explained the image portrays a person balancing on barbed wire to show his precarious lifestyle requires planning and poses multiple risks. The sun obscured by clouds reflects the ever present potential to lose his freedom should he fail to conceal his deviant identity. The towers obscured by clouds reflect incarceration and the recognition life imprisonment is the long-term consequence to his deviant conduct.
Alfred Adler (1870 – 1937) viewed humans as social animals. This simply means that when human behaviors are reduced to the lowest common denominator our seemingly complex behavioral repertoire is motivated to fulfill the social desire to belong. Ideally, all people would use healthy behavior to derive social significance. The benchmarks to healthy human behavior are contribution, cooperation, acceptance and intimacy. Honesty is the fabric to a socially healthy human’s relationships. Unfortunately, the human condition is far from perfect. Individuals develop their own style of feeling socially significant, these styles being a blend of respectful behavior and misbehavior (Dreikurs, R. & Soltz, V., 1964). Misbehavior is used by unhealthy humans to selfishly experience attention, control, revenge and discouragement. It gives the actor a false sense of social inclusion and self-importance. Dishonesty is the fabric to a socially unhealthy human’s relationships. A social deviant relies exclusively on the four goals to misbehavior to fulfill his/her distorted sense of social inclusion and personal significance. To clarify the differences between healthy and unhealthy social behavior, the four objectives to each are listed and described below.
Goals of Healthy Social Behavior
CONTRIBUTION: Taking on an activity or task for the purpose of helping another is the noblest motive to human behavior. It requires the actor to derive satisfaction from doing right without recognition or praise. The actor’s modesty enables group recognition.
COOPERATION: Working together to promote harmony and mutual benefit defines cooperative behavior. Clear communication and acknowledging individual differences are social skills that people develop to enable cooperative behavior.
ACCEPTANCE: Accepting individual differences enables autonomy. Unfettered by dependence, individuals are free to compromise and coexist. Acceptance enables healthy boundaries with people who use misbehavior to belong.
INTIMACY: Intimacy is a byproduct of contribution, cooperation and acceptance and the principle objective to healthy social behavior. Honesty is the fabric to social-sexual relationships.
Goals of Misbehavior
ATTENTION: Engaging in an activity or task to bring attention to self is the first goal to misbehavior. It is the simplest misbehavior form. An unquenchable thirst for attention fuels social behavior. The actor’s self-serving mantra that is Notice me or else.
POWER: Striving to control or dominate others defines power based behavior. Intimidating and/or defiant communication styles coupled with judging individual differences as a threat are the social styles that habituate as one becomes intoxicated by this misbehavior objective.
REVENGE: Hurting others to avenge real or imagined wrongs is the objective to this misbehavior. Shackled by the fear of reprisal, others are often rendered powerless to hold a differing opinion or value. The actor’s relationship bonds are compliance and dependence.
ASSUMED DISABILITY: Inability to live in a contributing, cooperative, accepting and honest manner is the global assumed social disability. Dishonesty is the fabric to social-sexual relationships.