Chris and his personality
One's personality is a set of mental, emotional, and behavioral qualities that make up an individual's character. Studying personality is a key aspect of psychology, allowing experts to know what makes people the way they are. There are many methods for testing one's personality, with some backed by decades of scientific research, and others created by random people on Facebook to show ads.
Chris's personality is quite eclectic. It is what draws countless people around the globe to study and follow his antics. He has spoken quite a bit on his own idea of his personality, but his own insight doesn't always jibe with reality.
His personality has undergone quite the change since Bob's death, with some traits undergoing a full 180.
Personality testing is a controversial field, with few tests used universally within the scientific community. Even the famous Myers-Briggs test, while useful for rough workplace assessments, is somewhat vague. It misses key areas like creativity and openness, and people who take the test often get different results over time. The closest thing to a gold standard is the Big Five, or OCEAN test.
This article discusses various aspects of Chris's personality, but is not to be taken as a substitute for an actual psych-eval.
Introversion vs extraversion
Chris has described himself as both introverted and extraverted He has shown traits of both introversion and extraversion over the years. (It should be be noted that few people are 100% introverted or extraverted; it is more akin to a spectrum which people fall on. People can also react differently to different contexts, such as a casual one-on-one hangout versus a large crowd.)
At high school, Chris appears to have been fairly introverted, though he had a strong drive to be extroverted and outgoing. A leaked icebreaker worksheet shows that Chris only talked to 7 of his class-mates. They were all female. Despite trying to later hold a high school reunion, in the Song of Christian, a 16-year old Chris describes having few friends and how his "loneliness is off the scale”. Even with the social prestige of being a water-boy to the school basketball team and his Gal-pals, Chris took his mom to the school prom. Nearly 10 years after the prom, Chris talked about feeling like an outcast at the prom, however his highlight of the evening was when one of his gal-pals felt sorry for him and "pulled [him] onto the dance floor". This dance "felt like hours" to Chris.
Around the time of discovery by Encyclopedia Dramatica, Chris was mainly an introvert. He kept to himself and barely spoke to anyone but his sweetheart. He joined most public chats in both text and voice forms only after being goaded by his current sweetheart or a troll. And even in these chats, he didn't converse a lot, and only answered questions directed towards him. Even while playing video games, he mostly stuck to playing single player games such as God of War, Pokemon, Sonic and Animal Crossing. Any multiplayer game he did play was mostly with his sweetheart like LittleBigPlanet and Burnout Paradise. Before his discovery, when he frequented the THe GAMe PLAce, he mostly kept to himself (and Megan), and rarely interacted with other people except during card games.
Classic Chris would clearly fall on the introvert side of the spectrum but he isn't a full on introvert. He did visit an anime expo in 2004 and 2005. New Chris, however, would easily fall on the extrovert side since 2017, as he started publicly responding to people, started playing multiplayer and co-op games such as Tetris 99 and PayDay 2, visited multiple conventions like Bronycon, Omegacon, BABScon and the TooManyGames expo. He has also started streaming videos, and answering questions his fans have. He has also joined public and private discord groups, though his interaction with other humans in them is limited. On Twitter, he has started interacting (although poorly) to a ton of people ranging from artists to enablers.
Kindness and respect
- Main article: Kindness
While Chris may strive to be kind, his efforts often fall flat and instead come across as annoying, overwhelming or creepy. Chris at least shows he makes an effort to look like a kind person, and he has referred to himself as the "kind and compassionate Christine Chandler". But saying you're kind and actually being kind are two very different things.
Many of Chris's attempts at being kind, from calling complete strangers "darling" to kissing guys he just met, are a clear violation of other's boundaries and easily make people feel uncomfortable. Ironically, his attempts can be quite unkind, particularly in how forceful they are. To his credit though, Chris did raise funds for the childhood cancer charity Alex's Lemonade Stand in June 2012, as well as donating to the Red Cross after Hurricane Harvey in September 2017; but that's about as far as it goes for any legitimately kind deeds.
Empathy vs antipathy
Anger, or tard rage as trolls call it, is a defining feature of Chris's personality. Also notable is his lack of empathy, beyond the point where it can be autism-related. While autistic people often struggle with cognitive empathy (the ability to know what someone is feeling), they generally have lots of emotional empathy (the ability to feel what someone is feeling after finding out). Chris seems to lack both, ignoring others' feelings even after they directly state them.
Chris generally utilises apologies as a performative tool to placate others and to persuade them to either leave him alone or give him what he wants - on the few occasions Chris does demonstrate what appears to be genuine remorse or grief, he still tends to either ignore or only broadly address issues at the heart of the matter, or shift blame onto others, and in what his perhaps his most infamous example of a tearful apology, a stroke of blissful happenstance was enough to completely erase any lingering feelings of sorrow that Chris may have had - indeed, it galvanised him enough that he indirectly mocked the target of his past apologies instead.
While Chris is not utterly incapable of feeling empathy, he has repeatedly demonstrated difficulty in constructing meaningful, sincere apologies for his misdeeds. This is, in part, due to his condition, and accordingly due to how some of his previous statements intended to redress the grievances of others have been constructed. Having been raised on a steady diet of assorted television programs ever since childhood and having experienced little in the way of meaningful social interaction ever since his days at Manchester High, Chris seemingly relies on his experience with media to assist him in many social situations, and apologies are no exception. When Chris attempts to make amends, he often hinders his own efforts with his delivery - his manner of speech is monotonous and often without any real emotion in such instances, with him appearing to do his level best to appear dejected and put-upon, an illusion that is shattered the moment he asks for a ban to be lifted because he wants to buy things, for instance. When he feels it necessary, he will also 'score' his videos with a background track, a tactic likely employed in this case to get the recipient to feel sorry for him and understand his point of view. This approach is possibly inspired by the media Chris has consumed: heartfelt moments call for fitting music, and so he sees it as the right thing to do, rather than an instance of blatant emotional manipulation.
The other, more noticeable aspect to this, however, is that on many occasions Chris displays an apparent inability to understand what he did wrong even after having his mistakes explained to him. Nowhere is this more apparent than in the Alec Benson Leary saga, where over the course of a number of telephone conversations Chris was repeatedly urged to apologise for actions that were explicitly read out to Chris on two separate occasions. The videos that followed these calls, already hampered by his flat, detached affect, did not address several of these wrongs, and those that were brought up were only spoken of briefly, with an absolute minimum of any emotion - in the seventh call between the two, Alec would directly accuse Chris of not understanding his faults. This eventually culminated in the highly controversial Sonichu 10, in which Chris has comic representations of Alec and his friends be brutally murdered by his gaggle of OCs and Sonichu clones. While he would later revise the ending of this issue, at the time he staunchly defended himself, proving that like with most aspects of social grace Chris is perfectly willing to renege on past apologies and promises if it benefits him, or to spite others who prove themselves a nuisance to him and his work. In a video published shortly before the comic's release, he backpedalled and claimed that he was taking a stand against Alec and his associates, and that he never wanted to kill Simonla Rosechu. a controversial character cribbed from an OC made by a friend of Alec's, characterising Evan's requests for apology and to stop using his work as 'blackmail', and in the ninth and final call with Alec, he blatantly backtracked on several phone calls and two apology videos worth of statements, claiming that Simonla was always his, and when called out for his execution of the Asperpedia Four, he responded that 'requesting the death of one of [his] characters comes with a price.'
While Chris may be fickle when it comes to apologies and their sincerity, however, he has a much, much easier time committing himself to hating people, especially if he believes they have wronged him gravely. The two most enduring examples of his unyielding scorn are perhaps Mary Lee Walsh and Michael Snyder. The former, for the 'crime' of destroying a sign in an effort to stop one of her college's pupils from loitering on school grounds in an attempt to solicit sex from students, was transformed into the first villain of the Sonichu comic series, made into a target of ridicule and mockery, and was sent intimidating drawings by Chris, the final straw in a series of missteps that saw him suspended from PVCC for a year. Although Chris would later try to change her image within the comics and even consider reconciling with her in reality, going as far as to deliver a framed version of his formal apology to her office himself, Chris still viewed the process of reconciliation through the lens of Chris forgiving Mary for her 'past misdeeds' - and when his attempt at delivering an apology was met with the dean contacting Chris' parents and asking them to ensure Chris remained away from the campus permanently under threat of legal summons, he was swift to do what he always did, labelling her as the architect of all his misery and deserving of whatever ill fortune may befall her. This bitter hatred burned for years after, surfacing most prominently in 2013, in which Chris blamed her and other parties for his life being the way it was in a series of Facebook rants. Mary Lee Walsh retired in 2019, whereupon Chris uncharacteristically wished her a peaceful life until her 'time of passing'... but not without offering 'constructive criticism' on how she could have better spoken to him.
Michael Snyder has not been as fortunate, by comparison. A constant target of Chris' wrath and a subject of his conspiratorial ramblings, Chris has spared extremely little in the way of pity or understanding for Snyder and his actions. Chris has commonly regarded Snyder as the other architect of all his misery, going so far as to accuse him of being a grasping, conniving schemer inexplicably conspiring with the Greene County school board to ban him from the GAMe PLACe and claiming that he didn't even know why he had been barred from the store when Snyder himself, and accounts of Chris' interactions with Snyder, make it clear that Chris' own behaviour was the cause. These feelings of antipathy only intensified after 28 October 2011, an incident which Chris has come to believe was entirely staged and grossly exaggerated by Snyder. Despite Snyder showing remarkable leniency towards both Chris and his mother in the subsequent legal proceedings, motioning for their sentences to be reduced to misdemeanours, Chris was not at all humbled by this impossibly gracious act of mercy; he went on to blame Snyder as the root cause for the Chandlers' financial crisis, rather than spending the entirety of Bob's inheritance on an expensive lawyer, and in the years since then his venom has not abated. In June 2021, a full thirteen years after being banned from the premises of a now-defunct hobby store, Chris listed Snyder as being among the worst negative influences on his life.
Openness vs obstinacy
In psychology, openness is a person's receptivity to new or unfamiliar experiences and ideas, including changes. A lot of Chris' close-mindedness can be attributed to his autism, as autistic people find comfort in predictable routines and are often averse to changes, both major and minor.
It is to be noted that no person is completely open to change and no person is completely against it. People tend to be open regarding views to things that don't matter to them and like to remain closed about topics that are close to them. Chris is no exception.
Chris is not very open to thoughts that differ from his; he rejects opinions and actual scientific facts if they do not match his beliefs. When he used to hate the LGBT community, he would find any excuse he could to rail against homosexuals - his hatred proved so overwhelming that the mere action of saying the word 'gay' was a task he found discomforting. He had also gone to the point where he rejected the fact that Asperger's syndrome is a form of autism just because he didn't like it, perceiving it as not being 'real' autism, and that those who had it were merely trying to take the 'limelight' away from 'true' autistic people.
After he came out as a transgender, he became much more open to the LGBTQ community and accepted them as equals, but his obstinacy has merely shifted topics. For example, his belief in the Dimensional Merge remains steadfast, and he is quick to dismiss anyone who tells him otherwise. He openly rejects proof that the merge isn't happening and cherry-picks minor incidents that seem to support his agenda. He is also quick to use his identification as someone within the LGBTQ community as grounds for accusations of discrimination whenever he finds himself prevented from doing what he wants by powers beyond his ability to influence or bargain with, a position that he is rarely talked down from taking.
Similarly, for a number of years, Chris held a potent hatred towards the Xbox line of gaming consoles. His explanations for this antipathy were often lacking and occasionally incoherent, but most accounts point to his aversion to the Xbox Live service around the time of the PS3 and Wii's prominence - his explanation then was that the Xbox was a poor investment because its competitors offered free wi-fi services, seemingly oblivious to the existence of 'Free' accounts that could access most wi-fi features outside of online play.
However, it should be noted that Chris is quick to vacillate in this regard, especially if he believes there is something in it for him, taking an incredibly rapid about-turn in his behaviour to placate others; later, in a bid to impress Jackie, he would admit that his arguments against Microsoft's machine were born from a lack of experience. He confessed that he had never owned an original Xbox and only ever used an Xbox 360 at a booth, twice - and that they 'left [him] with no leg to stand on', with Chris divulging that his reason for his hatred of the console was not simply zealous brand loyalty, but him being unable to afford an Xbox, being envious of those who had the ability to do so. Despite this, he would later relapse at the height of the latest round of console wars between the PS4 and the Xbox One, but once more he changed his tune, seemingly unprompted. He revealed himself as a Gold Account owner in November 2017, and since then has not had a single bad word to say about a game console he once despised with remarkable intensity. Hence, this is also a case of Chris demonstrating a bizarre degree of sudden openness towards something he claimed to hate. He has shown identical behaviour towards other things which initially served to arouse his ire, yet eventually came to be counted among his obsessions - Equestria Girls chief among them, with Chris going from hating the very idea of the show in May 2013 to naming the franchise-launching film as his second-favourite movie of all time a mere three months later.
Chris and personality tests
- A Magic: The Gathering quiz to find out that he is most like the white color typing, as each color associated with certain personality traits, the white type is associated with law and order, being the good guy beating up the bad guy. This seems to indicate that Chris held to his idealistic views of good and evil, and wasn't being very true and honest in the test, since he is very anti-law when it stops him from doing what he wants.
Dissociative identity disorder
Due to Chris's more recent behaviours, such as a belief in spirit possession and the manifestations of cartoon characters, Chris may indeed now have a mild trauma-induced strain of Dissociative identity disorder (DID), a mental disorder characterized by the maintenance of at least two distinct and relatively enduring personality states. This is most likely connected to manipulation from the Idea Guys and other traumas in his youth due to the mistreatment of those with ASD in a clinical and social environment. It is unknown how real the characters are to Chris, but he seems very adamant that they are real and manifest physically.
The main indicators of DID that Chris displays are:
- Daydreaming - Chris often mentions daydreaming as a form of meditation, during which Chris can "visit Cwcville", Chris's imaginary city where he is the overlord.
- Imaginary friends - Chris has a belief that all comic book characters are real people, as autonomous as any human, and that these characters exist in the real world and speak to him in his head.
- Reality/Fantasy overlap - Chris not only believes that the fantasy world of cartoons is real, but that one day it will merge with reality, and that already characters like Sonichu, Mewtwo, and Magi-chan have manifested themselves physically.
- Transitional Objects as Self - Chris has often emotionally attached himself to objects, resulting in hoarding, but the place in which this behaviour is most prevalent is with his character Sonichu. Chris identifies as Mother (previously Father) of Sonichu, and indeed all Sonichus, which results in him being protective of them, causing making things like putting them in danger in the comics seem immoral to him.
- Time Loss - Due to Chris's reportedly long daydreaming sessions, and poor memory associated with them, and his frequent and aggressive habit of lying it can be suspected that this is a result of DID.
- Ability to Cut Off from Pain and an Awareness of Danger - Chris's peculiar approach to emotional pain, namely that he'll randomly cut off from it totally, can be ascribed partially to ASD, but there is also a chance it is also a symptom from some form of DID. Chris will produce very random responses, trolls efforts to destroy things that are close to him or kill those close to him sometimes result in Chris showing little to no signs of caring in the slightest.
With this evidence, particularly noting the trauma that Chris must have received from the Idea Guy's manipulations, and Chris's current beliefs about the existence of imaginary places and people, and their ability to possess him, one may conclude that Chris having a mild form of DID is likely.
"Christian" vs "Christopher"
For two days in August 2009 Chris tried to convince Kacey and the rest of his fans that he had Dissociative identity disorder, a mental disorder characterized by the maintenance of at least two distinct and relatively enduring personality states. One of these "personalities" was named "Christopher" and the other named "Christian", as demonstrated in a video from the time.
The video's original subject was quickly derailed by "Christopher", Chris's more "repressed" personality, by interrupting "Christian" mid-sentence, and having a free-flowing sentence with "Christian", something which is almost impossible for somebody with DID to do, due to usually not sharing memories, or surfacing at the same time. Chris did not end up managing to fool anyone into believing he had the disorder, and Kacey reprimanded him for pretending to have DID and lying to her. Chris apologised and said he made it up to "fuel" the trolls, which still leaves one to wonder why he tried to convince Kacey it was true.
- February 2016 Facebook Posts#Socializing
- Catie Date Conversation Transcript
- User:ChrisChanSonichu profile#The Seinor Prom
- BlueSpike Skype Logs 5#February 10
- Lucas and Mimms Q&A#Chris's behavior
- A New, Fun Trick
- Post in question
- https://archive.is/cAquC Archived article on DID, Chris shows many of the indicators listed here
- Like his first medallion
- Such as several gal-pals, examples of whom are: PandaHalo, Sarah May and Ivy.