Maybe a plot bunny?  Because it makes perfect sense to me.

1: People are expecting too much if they really expect Sherlock to always succeed in prioritizing logic over emotions.  No matter what he wants to be or what image he projects, he’s a human being.  He DOES have emotions, and sometimes they DO override his logic and common sense.  That’s not hypocrisy.  That’s how emotions work.  They’re not rational.  No matter how cold you make yourself in life, when your emotions crop up, then you’re stuck with them.  

Sherlock can tell himself all he likes that he doesn’t care about people and that emotions are a weakness.  And maybe, a large part of the time, he’s even right.  It’s easy for some people to compartmentalize or emotionally disengage from people they don’t care deeply about, like he does with Janine.  But Sherlock loved his dog and he loves John Watson and he loves his parents and he even, grumpily, loves Mycroft.  And when it comes to the people he loves, Sherlock, like all of us, is emotionally compromised.

It’s also not hypocrisy to care about some people and not about others. Again, that’s how all of us work—although some of us have a higher default state of caring about strangers than others. Sherlock’s default is clearly very low.  (And we can guess, based on what he’s shared of his personal philosophy, that he has deliberately driven it very low.  He doesn’t WANT to care about people he’s never met.)

2: As for bullying and intellectual indifference, yes, I think they chose that deliberately to some extent, and I also think their high intelligence played a role.

I can tell you a bit about being a smart kid growing up around a lot of normal kids.  The bullying often isn’t even the thing that makes the biggest difference (although that has an influence).  The thing that really, really gets you is that even as a kid, you can SEE how ridiculous and irrational those other kids are acting.  And when many of them act like jerks to you (and they are probably often jerks to you, because you’re different and most people, especially kids with no life experience, just generally suck at figuring out how to deal with people who’re different), then you start saying to yourself, “Wow, I am really wasting my time if I try to associate with them or even bother caring about what they think.  They seem to have no redeeming qualities.”

If a lot of smart kids end up developing a low EQ, this is often why.  They just get no practice at it when they’re young, because attempting to be social with their own peer group is frustrating and painful and after a while they largely give up trying.  Once everybody gets older, at least some of those people become better prospects for socializing with.  But by then, you have a very smart adult who used to be a very smart kid, who never developed the social skills to understand how to interact with people they would like to get to know.

But here’s the other thing about Sherlock.  He doesn’t HAVE a low emotional intelligence.  He’s very GOOD at identifying, understanding and manipulating emotion.  He easily uses emotions as a form of disguise and manipulation.  He just does his best not to let his own emotions have any influence over him.  (But see for how well he actually accomplishes that.)

So what you actually have is someone who, probably from a young age, watched and learned from other people, but found socializing with them to be a frustrating experience (whether due to bullying, indifference, or the sheer distance between his intellectual capacity and that of most of his peer group), and he largely found them to be mean/slow/annoying/confusing enough that he decided to place little value on connecting with them in a meaningful way.  He developed the skills to socialize effectively because it got what he wanted, but on a deeper emotional level he largely did not engage.

The fact that he did (and does) emotionally engage SOMETIMES is one of the things that makes his claim of psychopathy laughable.  The key is how much effort they put into being good to him.  His parents and Mycroft love him.  His dog loved him unconditionally, in the way of dogs.  Lestrade looks out for him.  Mrs. Hudson takes care of him.  John loves him with a wild unconditional faith that, generally, is not advisable in human-to-human relationships because we inevitably suck at each other sooner or later (but John knows that and does it anyway).

So it’s not that Sherlock has no love or care to give.  It’s just that he’s good at not getting emotionally invested unless somebody else gets emotionally invested in him first.

Which, yes, is a pretty lonely way to live.  And as we see this season, Sherlock never quite realized that until Moriarty forced him to realize how he’d connected with John (well, he did know that) and his other friends. 

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