Congratulations, you scored 36.8!... But you may call it 37!
I don't think there're many - if any - diagnosed Psychopaths who aren't well acquainted with the Psychopathy Check List by Dr. Robert D. Hare. Though it isn't the only diagnostic assessment procedure used, it is the most widely used, and at present it is also the most precise where specific psychopathic traits are concerned - psychopathy differs from several of the other antisocial conditions/disorders, such as Antisocial Personality Disorder and Sociopathy - and as such there're probably not many clinical psychologists and forensic psychiatrists, i.e., who aren't well acquainted with it as well.
Indeed, we more or less all know of it (some even know it in detail by heart) since it is such a central part of the diagnostic assessment procedure.
Each of the twenty items are given one of three possible scores which are as follows:
- 0 - It doesn't apply to the patient at all.
- 1 - It applies somewhat, meaning the trait is there, but it is not highly dominant in the person.
- 2 - It fits the person perfectly, it defines dominant traits in character &/or behavior.
The scoring process itself is based on thorough investigation carried out prior to the final scoring assignment.
Though there are websites that states otherwise, the assessment procedure itself consists of a number of tests, interviews and research into the patient's past, including criminal, medical and educational history, work history, physical movement between locations and home addresses, relationships and possible marital history and/or status, and - not least - interviews with as many people as possible who know or knew the subject - Family, co-workers, teachers, friends, neighbors, counselors and therapists, etc. This is not a diagnosis that is given lightly! If the clinician honors the ethical implications of the seriousness of psychopathy and stays true to his hippocratic oath.
A person who receives a score at or above 30 is considered a psychopath and will receive the psychopathy diagnosis.
The highest possible score a person can get is 40.
The average neurotypical (normal) person receives a score between 3 and 6 (4 being the average estimate).
The average non-psychopathic criminal receives a score between 16 and 22.
The average criminal Sociopath and/or Antisocial Personality Disordered individual receives a score between 22 and 26.
The serious criminal Sociopath and/or Antisocial Personality Disordered individidual receives a score between 26 and 29.
Criminal Psychopaths receive a score between 30 and 40.
A non-criminal Psychopath receives a score between 30 and 34.
Approximately 1 in 45 receives a score of 40.
Below here is the complete list with each of the 20 items:
THE PSYCHOPATHY CHECK LIST(Revised) or The PCL-R
1 Glibness/superficial charm
2 Grandiose sense of self-worth
3 Need for stimulation/proneness to boredom
4 Pathological lying
6 Lack of remorse or guilt
7 Shallow affect [i.e. superficial experience and expression of emotions]
8 Callous/lack of empathy
9 Parasitic lifestyle
10 Poor behavioural controls
11 Promiscuous sexual behaviour
12 Early behaviour problems
13 Lack of realistic long-term goals
16 Failure to accept responsibility for own actions
17 Many short term marital relationships
18 Juvenile delinquency
19 Revocation of conditional release
20 Criminal versatility
The Check List has two different kinds of traits, with 10 of the items in each group.
The groups have been given the terms: Factor 1. Traits, and Factor 2. Traits.
Factor 1. Traits
Factor 1 traits are sometimes called 'Classic Psychopathy Characteristics', or 'True Psychopathy Characteristics'. These are the traits that describe the Psychological, Mental or Emotional Characteristics. They pertain to how the person feels, his emotional make-up, his thought process and the general mindset resulting of these.
Factor 2. Traits
Factor 2 traits are sometimes referred to as 'False Psychopathy Characteristics'. These are the traits that describe an individual's Conduct, his Activities and Demeanor. They pertain to Antisocial Traits, Criminal and Aggressive Deviant Features in the Individual Lifestyle, Actions and Behavior.
There will be both Factor 1. and Factor 2. traits in a Psychopath.
Generally speaking there will be a heavier leaning towards Factor 1. Traits - the 'True Psychopath' Traits, though there are those who have equally strong Factor 1. and Factor 2. Traits.
In the time to come I will discuss each of the 20 items one by one and tell you, first how Dr. Robert Hare - the author of the PCL-R - defines and describe them, and thereafter I will describe how I understand them, what I think of them in relation to psychopaths in general, and in relation to our society and the culture this list in some ways is an expression of.
I will discuss the items especially in relation to how they pertain to myself as an individual who happen to have enough of these features to be classified as a psychopath, what I think about this - how it is to be considered a psychopath by my contemporaries, and how I find that each item fits or do not fit my characteristics as a personality.
I will have several arguments to put forward regarding my own Psychopathy Diagnosis, but I will also have admissions to give - for the first time in my life.