Identifying a psychopath at an early age is crucial. We all know what they’re capable of when they become older. With famous psychopaths such as Jeffrey Dahmer and Jack the Ripper, scientists are constantly trying to figure out what can cause it. One thing is for sure, there are warning signs when they are younger.
At times, it’s when parents push their children that lead to certain actions by them. The issue is they don’t pay much attention to certain signs.
Below are some key signs that many serial killers possessed when they were children.
Cruelty to Animals: A study was conducted by psychology expert Dr. Phillip Kavanagh and his colleagues. They wanted to examine the relationship between animal abuse and psychopathy. They found that the psychopathy trait was linked to animal abuse.
They’re Fascinated With Certain Things: According to Professor Stephen Scott, from the Institute of Psychiatry at King’s College in London, children that are fascinated with gadgets such as recording devices could be showing a sign of things to come.
Punishment Insensitive: Scott explains that if a child is insensitive to punishment it could be a sign. Punishment insensitive means you can ground them and take away things but it’s still difficult to control their behaviour.
Lack of Empathy: According to Scott, when a child’s brain is scanned, there is an area called the amygdala. This is where a person acknowledges and processes emotions. So a child will understand emotions but just chooses to ignore them completely.
Short Temper: It’s natural for children to have short tempers. But professor Scott explains that it has to deal more with the child doing sensitive things one minute and doing insensitive things the next minute because they don’t get their own way.
Scott explains that only one percent of children actually display unemotional traits. He adds that these traits are largely unrecognized by parents.
There is a study in the Biological Psychiatry journal that was conducted by psychologists at King’s College in London. The study was done to identify antisocial behaviour in younger children.
Researchers tracked the visual preference of 5-week-old babies to see if they would rather look at a red ball or a human face. When the babies were two-and-a-half years old, they were tested for callous and emotional traits (CU). Results showed that babes who interacted with the red ball were more likely to exhibit CU traits (cruelty to animals, selfishness, no remorse) as toddlers.