“Don’t Limit Your Audience”

AJ Wood
6 min readNov 5, 2019

My therapist advised me

Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash

My therapist knows I’m writing on Medium. I’ve told him about it. I described how I had stumbled across the site, and eventually decided to plunk down the fifty bucks for the year’s membership.

A little while ago I read a couple pieces aloud to him. Hey, I’ve been writing about my healing journey here, and that’s what I pay him for, so I figured he might as well hear a bit of it. He said, “I like it. It’s really good.” But he did have a piece of advice for me.

He started out by reminding me that only three or four percent of the world’s population are sociopaths. That puts my personal experience way outside what most people would consider normal. The vast majority of people in this world have no clue, and no frame of reference to get one, about the horrors of being raised by a sociopathic mother. So, if I write about my experiences as they happened in hopes of connecting with others who have dealt with something similar, I’ll be limiting my potential audience.

I understood what the guy was saying, but something wasn’t adding up in my head. I pulled out the calculator and did a little math. Four percent of the world’s population is roughly 308 million people. Then, if we assume that each sociopath gets married and has children (that’s 308 million x 3 [1 spouse + 2 children]), that puts about a billion people in close enough proximity to be victimized by one. That’s not counting all the flying monkeys and “friends” who flock around long enough to do the sociopath’s bidding. If we add them in (say, half a million), we can conservatively estimate that 1.5 billion people in this world have had personal contact with at least one sociopath. I don’t know why my therapist thinks I would be limiting myself if I focus my attention on an audience of that size. It seems large enough to me.

(At this point in my ramblings, I’ll think I’ll take a bit of a detour. But don’t worry. I’ll tie it in soon enough. I promise. My therapist says I do that a lot, and makes it hard for him to follow my string of thought. Hence, I’ve learned to give him a little warning when I pull a seemingly unrelated piece of information into my narrative. So, off we go on one of my tangents.)

AJ Wood

Good work! You’ve found my personal journal. You may find it healing, as I do. Go on, take a peek. And come join the fun! https://ajwood59.medium.com/membership