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Nov 182013


The effects that an offender’s behavior has on families may be very public, as in the case of William Bulger, the brother of “Whitey” Bulger, who, after years on the run, was finally captured and tried very publicly for the brutal murders of many people, and for running a “mafia type” operation for years.

There is little doubt in anyone’s mind that Whitey Bulger is a monster, and most likely a, that can either kill or order people killed without the slightest twinge of conscience. Even during his trial one of the potential witnesses was murdered.

With Mr. William Bulger being a prominent politician in his area, this must be quite a public embarrassment. He was quoted in an article in the Huffington Post that “this has been a source of great anguish.”

I understand that anguish. I don’t know William Bulger, and don’t know what he knew or didn’t know about his brother’s whereabouts during the years that Whitey hid out…or what he knew or didn’t know about Whitey’s crimes before Whitey was caught.

For the sake of argument, though, I am going to presume that William Bulger is an honest and upright man who has a dangerous offender in his family in the person of his brother “Whitey”. An offender who has brought public shame upon the family’s name.

William said that he would continue to visit Whitey and “be a brother” to him as long as he could. Both of these men are in the sunset years of their lives, with Whitey being 84 years old and William being in his 70s.

The public anguish of this family must be quite difficult since the trial exposed in graphic detail the horrible murders committed or ordered by Whitey. Fortunately for me, since my son Patrick did his crimes in another state and  went to prison in another state, I was spared the worst of the public anguish. Other  families, though, have offenders who commit their crimes locally and make the six-o’clock news so that the family of the offender’s  anguish must be suffered publicly, at least locally, if not the national news.

The article noted that William didn’t attend Whitey’s trial but some of his children did. I imagine that it would have been very difficult for a man who loved his older brother to actually hear the evidence presented against him that would paint that brother as a true monster. William’s children that attended probably didn’t know “Uncle Whitey” very well,  maybe only by stories around the family dinner table, and so were probably not so traumatized personally by the stories they heard and were more able to listen to the testimony.

I feel sad for William Bulger and for the very public shame Whitey has brought on that family. The anguish of not only having a brother that has committed such horrible crimes, but having the entire nation know it was your brother must be excruciating.  I wish peace to all the people that Whitey has harmed, and that includes his own family.


BOSTON (AP) — Former Massachusetts Senate president William Bulger said Friday he doesn’t condone the actions of his older brother, convicted Boston mobster James “Whitey” Bulger, but has been visiting him weekly in jail.
The situation “has been a source of great anguish,” Bulger said in an interview with Boston’s WCVB-TV  http://bit.ly/1aIRO8Z

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  42 Responses to “Public shame for the family When your offender's acts make national headlines

  1. The best approach when dealing with a disordered person is to remain DETACHED at all times. The “human” part of them is off, or not there at all, so don’t get too attached to a person who is clearly a destructive force. Whitey’s brother cannot impact his brother for good because the man made his pact with the devil years and years ago (whether he realizes it or not). We know which side Whitey’s on (or working for), the dark side. The only one who can reach Whitey is God himself. Now, that would be a miracle.

  2. Jesus tells us how to deal with people who have “injured” us or others, he says “if thy brother offend thee go to him privately, if he will not listen, take witnesses so that every word may be known, and if he still will not listen go to the church (community) and if he still will not listen (and repent) then treat him like a heathen, NOT EVEN TO EAT WITH HIM.”

    Actually I think this sort of is the NO CONTACT rule.

    Jesus age with sinners, whores, and tax collectors, the lowest of the low, but he did not fail to tell them how they had sinned and what to do. REPENT and change your ways.. He told the whore who was about to be stoned “go and sin no more.”

    I do not believe that God FORCES anyone to repent or see the error of their ways. I think we all have free choice. Sure, genetics plays a part in psychopathy just like in alcoholism, it may be MORE DIFFICULT for someone with the genes for alcohol addiction to quit drinking than for me, but the point is that WE ALL HAVE CHOICES. The drunk or drug addict can CHOOSE to NOT use substances because they see what it does to themselves and their families. some do change but most do not.

    Even a psychopath CAN make a choice not to kill or steal…there are plenty of them that do make prosocial choices and become law abiding citizens.

    I just read an autobiography about a neuroscientist doing research on psychopathy who realized when he saw the fMRI of his brain that he showed the same brain patterns as a psychopath. He was curious about it, denied it at first, but finally admitted that he had been hateful and cruel and that his fellow researchers had seen early on that he was a psychopath.

    He made concerted efforts to be more kind and to pay attention to his wife and kids, but at the same time, he also realized that he had no empathy and really didn’t CARE how they felt, but he decided it was worthwhile to be “nicer” because otherwise he would lose his family and his “friends” completely. So there was something in it for him to gain is why he did it.

    A very interesting book…I will do a book report on it shortly. I think it is a good thing to read how a psychopath really thinks. We can also see that he diminishes his “teenage pranks” like STEALING A CAR and other acts that were criminal. From his descriptions of his violent brothers I think his whole family may have scored high on the psychopathic traits, while maybe not having been prosecuted by the law. Just because someone is not arrested or sent to prison does not mean that they still can’t be a psychopath, even a “successful” one in some professions…there are many of them in careers that have a lot of power, judges and lawyers, military, police, politics, etc

    • Joyce,

      Did the scientist in his autobiography, describe how a psychopath really thinks, their thought processes? Would all psychopaths think in the same way?

    • Bluejay,
      I haven’t read the book, just some articles on it. It seems from what little I’ve read, that he’s trying to put a spin on his psychopathy. As though it’s not as bad because he’s never murdered anyone and he’s not in prison.

      Sam Vaknin has written very well about how narcissists think. As far as I can tell, it’s pretty accurate. It’s also very unpleasant to read or hear (he has several YouTube videos). He describes all the hate, fear and resentment that drives his perverse thinking. He uses clinical language but the sick mind-set still comes through.

      I think that it’s accurate because it matches what I’ve personally observed in other narcissists, both personally and in the media. Basically, they view themselves as “superior” to everyone else regardless of their actual position and they want everyone else to pay for them (“pay” in every sense of the word).

  3. That should be “jesus ATE” with sinners not AGE with sinners…for some reason the edit button isn’t working, but just wanted to clarify. LOL

  4. Yea, Blue I do see various “tells” about how he writes, such as the aforementioned diminishing the severity of his stealing cars and going joy riding when he was a kid, some severe beat downs he and his brothers did, he seems to have the attitude “it’s just kid’s pranks, every kid does that” Which of course is NOT true.

    He’s been married to the same woman who has endured his lack of caring and support, his staying out at titty bars with the guys and his alcoholism…he does mention that he was on some dating sites and flirting with women and that it hurt his wife. He swears he didn’t have sex with them…but you know you have to remember that Bill Clinton said I DID NOT HAVE SEX WITH THAT WOMAN. LOL

    He admits that he doesn’t really understand how others feel, and that he really DOESN’T CARE so he is just essentially play acting socially acceptable behaviors by rote.

    In my experience many of the psychopaths that I have known have learned how to put on socially acceptable manners and or piety because they know it will get them what they want, but they don’t FEEL what they are doing, they only ACT it out like an actor in a play.

    • Is this the scientist who claims that one of his relatives was Lizzie Borden? I remember that another website had an article about a researcher who discovered that his brain resembled a psychopaths and he had an ancestor who was Lizzie Borden. I just can’t recall the man’s name.

  5. His name is James Fallon and the book is “The psychopath inside”

    I think from the way it is written he still does NOT GET IT HOW NORMAL PEOPLE THINK but he does know that he does NOT think like others. According to the ending he realizes he IS A PSYCHOPATH and does not have empathy so he is FAKING caring to his family he says, but you know…I’m not sure how good he is at being KIND when he doesn’t FEEL kind or caring.

    I will do a review of the book here before long, but in the meantime, I highly recommend that you get a copy and read it because I’d also like your take on it in relation to what you have SEEN from your own personal psychopaths.

  6. oh, yes, he does claim to be related to Lizzie and others way back…including the first man hanged in the colonies for killing his mother.

  7. Earlier, I researched via the internet, finding the researcher’s name – James Fallon. I would be interested in reading his book. It would be interesting to know just what psychopaths think on a moment-to-moment basis, how they differ from the rest of the human population.

  8. Blue, I found the book very telling in several ways…he goes into the chemical and genetic things that make the P brain different than “typical” people, but that part is not the most interesting, the part that is interesting is how he admits he did some pretty nasty things that hurt others, but he DOES NOT CARE. It is like he is playing a part on stage in his attempt to be “psychopath lite” and be “nicer” but he admits he still doesn’t have any empathy and just DOES NOT CARE. That’s pretty cold actually. No matter how he is “successful” in his field, he is still an uncaring person. Not someone I would want in my life.

    Your sister might want to first read Hare’s “Without conscience” and “the Sociopath next door” and then maybe this book.

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