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NCJ Number: 158187 Find in a Library
Title: Parental Levels of Empathy As Related to Risk Assessment in Child Protective Services
Journal: Child Abuse and Neglect  Volume:19  Issue:11  Dated:(November 1995)  Pages:1349-1360
Author(s): P Rosenstein
Date Published: 1995
Page Count: 12
Type: Survey
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Twenty-nine Texas parents referred by child protective services for assessment of the presence and risk of child physical abuse were assessed to test the hypothesis that a negative relationship exists between parental levels of empathy and the risk of child physical abuse and that the presence of empathy in the parent or caretaker mediates the amount of stress the caretaker can handle without abusing the child.
Abstract: Most of the parents were referred to the author for assessment between January and May 1994. Each parent completed the Adult-Adolescent Parent Inventory and the Parental Stress Inventory. Results supported the hypothesis of a relationship between parental levels of empathy and child physical abuse. Results indicated a strong correlation between high levels of cognitive empathy and the absence of behavioral or emotional role reversal in the parent-child relationship. Findings are consistent with attachment theory and suggest that parental empathy is a necessary concept in the prediction of the risk of physical child abuse. Findings suggest that a measure of empathy should be added to each of the risk assessment tools used by child protective service specialists. Tables and 37 references (Author abstract modified)
Main Term(s): Juvenile victims
Index Term(s): Child abuse detection; Child abuse investigations; Parental attitudes; Texas
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