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Can He Be Changed?

Question:

My brother has been abusive and aggressive since we were young children. He has been to prison for burglary and assault when he was a teenager. He has a beautiful house 2 children and girlfriend who he mentally and sexually abuses and repeatedly cheats on. He shows no remorse and if you ask him why? he says he doesn’t know why he does theses things because his girlfriend is wonderful. He says he is incapable of loving anyone. He drinks to get drunk and takes cocaine. He’s recently hit rock bottom when his girlfriend of 10 yrs discovered he has another secret child who lives in the same area. She had an inkling about his years ago but he denied it, everybody in the area knew about it. She’s finally thrown him out and I’ve taken him in, he’s admitted he’s a nasty person. We watched a lot of domestic abuse when we were young, my mum was a drunk and we weren’t shown any love or affection. She will not show any remorse for anything she does, i think she’s a horrible person. Is there any hope for him to change? I’ve booked an appointment for the doctor to try and get some counselling but is there any point in going through all this with him? I know he wont tell the doctor what’s going on so I thought I’d go with him and tell all.

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Answer:

Your brother is an adult and, therefore, should go to the Doctor by himself. It is his choice as to whether he wants to tell all or not. If he does not want to be honest with the therapist then there is no point to him going. I know you have compassion for your brother and want him to get help but he must choose to do that himself. No one can do it for him.

The situation you describe about growing up sounds very grim. As a result of the abusive environment he grew up in your brother appears to have developed a sociopathic personality disorder. Simply, what that term means is exactly what you describe about him: he has no conscience, uses people towards his own gains, is very dishonest, has a criminal history with prison, is aggressive, etc.

Under all of these circumstances, it would take years of hard work in psychotherapy for him to change and, from what you describe, he is not committed to doing that.

There is no purpose to you accompanying him to his appointment and there is no purpose to you having made the appointment for him. In all the cases with which I have been familiar over the years, adults for whom someone else makes a therapy appointment either never go to therapy or never get past the first session after which they quit.

Let you brother decide for himself.

Best of Luck with a very difficult situation.

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