Measurement of victim empathy in intrafamilial and extrafamilial child molesters using the child molester empathy measurement (CMEM)

Teuma, R, Smith, D, Stewart, A and Lee, J 2003, 'Measurement of victim empathy in intrafamilial and extrafamilial child molesters using the child molester empathy measurement (CMEM)', International Journal of Forensic Psychology, vol. 1, no. 1, pp. 120-132.


Document type: Journal Article
Collection: Journal Articles

Title Measurement of victim empathy in intrafamilial and extrafamilial child molesters using the child molester empathy measurement (CMEM)
Author(s) Teuma, R
Smith, D
Stewart, A
Lee, J
Year 2003
Journal name International Journal of Forensic Psychology
Volume number 1
Issue number 1
Start page 120
End page 132
Total pages 13
Publisher University of Wollongong
Abstract Although it is widely believed that child molesters are deficient in empathy, there is little unequivocal evidence supporting this view. The present paper explores the issue of whether Australian adult child molesters are deficient in empathy relative to adult male members of the general community, using the Child Molester Empathy Measure (CMEM). This measure was designed specifically for the assessment of victim empathy in child molesters and has previously been used only with Canadian extrafamilial offenders. The present research extends the previous study by contrasting the empathy responses of 11 intrafamilial and 14 extrafamilial child molesters. The results challenge the notion that child molesters have either a generalised or victim-specific empathy deficit. Findings are discussed in terms of the use of the CMEM as an instrument that can reliably distinguish child molesters from nonoffenders, methodological issues, and directions for future research.
Keyword(s) assessment
Child Molester Empathy Measure (CMEM)
child molesters
victim empathy
Copyright notice International Journal of Forensic Psychology © 2003
ISSN 1448-4374
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