Does Your Partner Lack Empathy? Be Aware Of These Callous Personality Traits In A Relationship

Last Update on March 8, 2022 : Published on March 8, 2022
Callous Personality Traits In A Relationship

Perfection is a trait that is rarely found. No individual can claim perfection, at least as far as personality traits are concerned. One of the imperfect or unhealthy traits that we’ll be exploring in this article is the callous-unemotional personality trait.

While openness to experience, extraversion, conscientiousness is often described as healthy personality traits, many traits are not considered psychologically healthy and may even prevent healthy social relationships.

A callous personality trait, especially in a relationship, can be a red flag. A callous-unemotional personality can be defined as a constant behavior that shows indifference towards others. A callous trait can also mean a lack of empathy. And let’s face the truth; when one lacks empathy, how can a relationship thrive?

Below, I’ve listed some common signs of a callous personality trait that can help you identify a lack of empathy in your partner.

Signs Of Callous-Unemotional Personality


1. Being Unkind

One of the major signs of a callous personality is unkindness. If your partner lacks empathy, then you may notice that your partner often treats you and others unkindly. Unkindness can look different as well. For example, a callous person may joke around with others at their expense. For them, it can be funny but hurtful to others.

2. Being Fearless

When I talk about being fearless here, I’m not talking about the good kind of fearless. It isn’t being courageous and kind enough to stand against injustice but here, fearless can mean the risky kind. Where your partner engages in reckless behavior where they might unintentionally put you or others at unnecessary risk.

3. Having A Lack Of Self-Awareness

Another sign of a callous personality can mean having a lack of self-awareness. A callous partner does not understand how their actions and words might affect their loved ones and even strangers. A lack of self-awareness prevents them from having a healthy relationship. In this case, your partner may react aggressively first or snap at you without thinking about their actions.

4. Having A Lack Of Remorse

Lack of empathy or callous-unemotional traits means a person doesn’t feel bad about their actions even if they know it was wrong. A lack of remorse can be a sign of a callous personality. They won’t apologize and not because they have a sense of entitlement but more likely because they genuinely don’t understand their wrongdoings.

5. Being Overly Pleasant

Again, here, being overly pleasant isn’t a positive trait. When you notice that your partner comes off as overly pleasant, it can also be a sign of a callous personality. Their callous-unemotional nature may make them appear charming but in reality, it can be counterintuitive. For them, being overly pleasant may benefit them at others’ expense.

6. Being Dishonest

Another common trait of callous-unemotional personalities is being dishonest. It is often because they usually depend on manipulation to get what they want. Since they rarely care about others’ feelings, they may lie to get what they want. For example, your partner may say that they are busy at work but hours later you may find them having fun with their colleagues.

7. A Lack Of Emotional Expression

If you notice that your partner displays callous personality traits then you may also notice that they don’t display many emotions. However, certain feelings they display may cause disagreements with others. For example, if your partner says that they’re sad, you may not see the emotional expression because they don’t understand the depth of the said emotion.

Did You Know!

  • Callous-unemotional (CU) has been included as a characteristic of conduct disorder in DSM-5
  • Children with a callous personality trait face problems in emotional and behavioral regulation and show similarities to attributes found in psychopathy.
  • Antisocial adults with a callous-unemotional trait are less sensitive to punishment, particularly when they are already eager for a reward.

If you see the above-mentioned signs of a callous personality in your partner or someone you love, you can reach out for professional help. With the right help, you can learn how to deal with a callous person without costing your mental and psychological health.

Reach Out To A Professional Counselor Today! 

Visit BetterHelp

You can also reach out to us at or drop us a message on our social media platforms! You can also share your experiences with a callous-unemotional personality in the comments section below.

Take care and stay safe!

About The Author

Swarnakshi Sharma
Swarnakshi Sharma

Swarnakshi is a content writer at Calm sage, who believes in a healthier lifestyle for mind and body. A fighter and survivor of depression, she strives to reach and help spread awareness on ending the stigma surrounding mental health issues. A spiritual person at heart, she believes in destiny and the power of Self. She is an avid reader and writer and likes to spend her free time baking and learning about world cultures.

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