Anonymous asked in Social SciencePsychology · 1 decade ago

How does someone become a serial killer?

What has to go wrong in their childhood for them to become a serial killer? What personality disorders must they have?

What exactly goes wrong?


Crazy B*tch, I'm not talking about down syndrome.

12 Answers

  • Pip
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago
    Best Answer

    Many noted serial killers come from dysfunctional backgrounds. Frequently they were physically, sexually, or psychologically abused as children and there is often a correlation between their childhood abuse and their crimes.

    Serial killers are specifically motivated by a variety of psychological urges, primarily power and sexual compulsion. They often have feelings of inadequacy and worthlessness, sometimes owing to humiliation and abuse in childhood and/or the pressures of poverty and low socioeconomic status in adulthood, and their crimes compensate for this and provide a sense of potency and often revenge, by giving them a feeling of power, both at the time of the actual killing and afterwards. The knowledge that their actions terrify entire communities and often baffle police adds to this sense of power. This motivational aspect separates them from contract killers and other multiple murderers who are motivated by profit. For example, in Scotland during the 1820s, William Burke and William Hare murdered people in what became known as the "Case of the Body Snatchers." They would not count as serial killers by most criminologists' definitions, however, because their motive was primarily economic.

    Another recent theory about the compulsion of serial killer propounded by Helen Morrison state that serial killers are not a result of sexual abuse, inadequacy or socioeconomic status but are rather the result of retarded emotional development. Serial Killers can be gauged as having the emotional development of an infant of less than 100 days, of course, this varies between individuals. The low level of emotional development, arguably, causes serial killers to have fractured or disparate personalities - that is they are not a whole person. Low emotional development also explains some common traits among serial killers such as enjoying holding soft materials against their mouths (being the primary sensory organ of infants) which was observed in Robert Macek, John Wayne Gacy and others - the material often being womens panties because of the materials softness.

    The Helen Morrison theory also suggests that a serial killer has not developed basic levels of emotional control and that, as a result, a serial killer does not have "feelings of inadequacy and worthlessness, sometimes owing to humiliation and abuse" which draw them to killing, rather, the act of killing is actually a kind of experimentation which is uninhibited due to the subjects low or non-existent level of sympathy/empathy with the victims. It is arguable that serial killers are in fact trying to understand their own existence by inflicting pain, killing and experimenting with victims dead bodies. This also explains some of the macarbe practices of serial killers such as Ed Gein, John Wayne Gacy, Jeffrey Dahmer and others.

    The element of fantasy in a serial killer's development is extremely important. They often begin fantasizing about murder during or even before adolescence. Their fantasy lives are very rich and they daydream compulsively about domination, submission, and murder, usually with very specific elements to the fantasy that will eventually be apparent in their real crimes. Others enjoy reading stories or seeing photographs in magazines featuring rape, torture and murder. In some cases, however, these traits are not present.

    Source(s): Wikipedia
  • 4 years ago

    This is usually associated with a traumatic childhood, bed-wetting, cruelty to small animals, and setting fires. A profile rarely if ever helps to catch a serial murderer, but after the person is caught, s/he will fit the profile pretty well. There is always a large sexual component in serial killings. The killings usually become more frequent and more sadistic as the killer escalates. And yes, there have been female serial killers. It has been estimated that there may be as many as thirty five such people in the USA at any given time. Personally, I think this estimate is far too high. Do not confuse serial killers with mass murderers. They may kill several people, but all at at one time.

  • Anonymous
    4 years ago

    It doesn't even have to be acquired. For example, while sociopaths are made from either brain damage or abuse/neglect in childhood, psychopaths are born the way they are. Also, sadists can be either born that way or made that way. It all depends on the person.

    Note: Not all sociopaths, psychopaths, and sadists become serial killers. Anyone could be a serial killer of he/she wanted to.

  • 5 years ago

    Question: How does someone become a serial killer? Answer: practice, practice, practice.

    One a more serious note you might find this useful: "Serial Killer Girls"

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  • 1 decade ago

    There's no specific way someone becomes a serial killer. It's a choice.

  • 1 decade ago

    They are supposedly "pre-dispositioned".............pretty much, they are born to "want" to kill. You know, like the kids you torture/maim/kill animals and such.........they live in a "fantasy" world but dont know it. Really good question, but Im not sure if I gave you what you are looking for,lol.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    They are born just like the rest of us,no personality disorders.They just like to feel in control of everything and everybody.Then there,s the notoriety that comes with murdering people,the more they murder the more attention they get.They are just evil not sick.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    I think it is an ego problem. They are belittled and become angry so they want power over people.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    the have na extra chromozone you inhereit 11 from mom ad 11 from dad but sometimes those they get an extra # and are fuc*ed up

  • Anonymous
    6 years ago

    get bullyed by there parents

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