“For what I’ve done, there is no excuse”

by spmmps on October 21, 2016 - 4:41pm

I have been researching into the lives of serial killers, more specifically their childhoods, to see if there are any similarities in their lives. My objective is to see if any events in adolescence or possibly their childhood environment has affect on their adulthood lives and impulse to kill. Within my research, I have found that there are definite similarities. It is essential in my research to look at not only their childhoods but the period of time, in adulthood, that they killed. There are more often than not, behaviors/actions of the at the time children that translate into the murders they commit.

I watched the documentary  “The Jeffrey Dahmer Files”, that talks about how Dahmer was found out to have killed multiple young men, dismembered and even ate some of them. It includes reenactments of his interactions with people, also interviews with the main detective (that spent many hours interviewing him) and his neighbor, along with actual video footage of his court cases. The purpose of this documentary is to display the details of Jeffrey Dahmer’s life  during the time he was killing, whilst giving a look into his thoughts and mindset. It is more revealing in terms of his own view of his capture and his crimes, than any other source I have seen so far.

He discusses how Jeffrey was drunk when taken into custody and attributed himself being caught to his drunkenness saying, “I can’t believe this has happened. I can’t believe I got caught.” The detective describes his house, full of boxes, full of dismembered body parts (hands, male genitalia, etc.). He had human skulls that he had painted silver. The fridge holding nothing but a human head and condiments. He had eaten, dismembered body parts lying around. The detective tells this horrifying account and relaying that Jeffrey had just wanted to create someone he didn’t have to go out and kill. More specifically, a “sex zombie”. The documentary also shows the aftermath and effect of his murders among the community. His next door neighbor helps to give insight to that. She also discusses her relationship with Jeffrey, how he had made her sandwiches (which she speculates were made of human meat) and given her his couch. To this woman, he did not seem suspicious, conniving or by any means, a murderer.  

This documentary gave me a very eerie feeling, it was scary to watch, especially alone at home. The documentary revealed the sick and twisted things Dahmer had done. It was especially creepy to watch because it showed just how emotionless he seemed. He seemed in a daze, blank and just not all there. It almost seemed like he was in an alternate universe. Although, he was aware of his murders. He confessed to the detective, “For what I have done, there is no excuse”. I really wonder about the conflict that is presented here. He appeared spaced out but once caught, he was completely aware of what he had done. He knew there was no excuse for his crimes. So, he knew what he had done was wrong. I wonder if he was consciously aware of that wrongness during his crimes or he had entered some sort of alternate psychological state while killing.  

As I was watching the documentary, I was reminded of my research I had previously done on Jeffrey Dahmer. My initial reaction was to go right back to my previous research. In the documentary, the detective reveals many aspects of Jeffrey’s present life that coincide with his youth. He did not have the easiest childhood or the most loving, caring parents. Jeffrey began drinking at a very young age, bringing alcohol to school, claiming it was his “medicine”. Jeffrey used to collect dead animals, dismember them and store them in jars. Then, he would try to piece them back together.  In his adult life, he did the same thing but with human bodies. This only leads me to believe that there is a definite connection between childhood environmental factors and behavior contributes to behavior of serial killers as adults. There is more often than not, a connection between their feelings, relationships and actions from childhood to adulthood. This documentary was a great addition to my research of serial killers.


The Jeffrey Dahmer Files (2013)



Wow, very interesting post. This is the kind of material that they like to make movies about. Overall, I believe that this was a good post and what I liked most about it was the mystery. More specifically, it was the title that drew me in because it made me wonder who said that quote and wonder what the person had done. Even throughout your article you built the suspense by unravelling Jeffrey's story. Some good questions were raised that prove to be interesting for people who have a passion for the psychology of serial killers. Good job!

Hi there,

I found your post incredibly interesting. I found your title very catching and had to click it to read more about what you were talking about! Growing up my friends and I would watch Dexter and now reading about your post about Jeffrey Dahmer I can see how they related Dexter to a real life serial killer. Dexter was also emotionless after killing and it looked like he did no wrong. I found your article also interesting because I find it strange how Jeffrey Dahmer could eat people and feel okay about it, as I can’t even find that appealing or appetizing in anyway. Do you think if Jeffrey Dahmer had gotten more attention from his parents he would have strayed away from becoming a serial killer?

Your blog was very interesting and suspenseful which sparked my interest. Furthermore, your blog title made me even more interested because honestly, I had no idea who said the quote and what topic your blog was even about.

Did you know that animal abuse is one of the first signs of indicating serial killing behavior? I'm not surprised to read about Jeffrey's behavior in that aspect.

I think you should expand on why Jeffrey did not have the easiest childhood. How was his parents unloving and uncaring? Did they punish him a lot? Was he neglected as a child? What exactly triggered him to drink alcohol as a way of coping with his problems?

This was an interesting blog post that reminded me of a book I've previously read, "We need to talk about Kevin". In this book, the mother can tell from early childhood that Kevin is missing empathetic feelings towards other beings and people. Later in Kevins life, his mothers suspicions continue to rise as she trys to internally defend Kevin against her greatest fears. In the end, Kevin committed multiple murders including the killing of his sister and father.

I definitely share the same view as this blog; I believe the actions and experiences of children will in most cases speak of how they will be as an adult. I thought this blog very intriguing and to make it even stronger, you could have made more connections between the documentary and your ideas discussed.

Reading this, reminds me of when I used to watch Criminal minds, I made it 3 seasons in before getting bored of it. Most of the episodes were about serial killers and It interested me in a way because it would show their backstories and how they came to be killers.

Hey spmmps!

The first thing that caught my eye was your title. It drew my attention right away because it got me thinking “what could she/he have done that is so bad? why is there no excuse?”. I also really appreciated the way in which you analyzed the unique subject of serial killers. The fact that childhood and environment may be the cause kept me thinking long after I had read it.

However, I think the subject of serial killers would benefit from further analysis by studying the role gender has in the development of future serial killers. As a matter of fact, the concept of the “man box” would be a prime example of how gender can encourage violence.

The man box is a metaphorical box that contains all the basic stereotypes that are attached to being a man. Examples of these stereotypes include being stoic, aggressive, emotionless, etc. In this case, it is possible that the reason why men are much more likely to be serial killers is because they feel the need to prove themselves as men. In other words, they feel the need to prove, through drastic actions such as murder, that they also adhere to the standards set forth by the man box.
You said that some of the reasons why people turn into serial killers could be factors having to due with their childhood & environment but why? What triggered it? Perhaps they were told by their fathers that they weren’t tough enough, maybe they were bullied. If so, it would only further prove the importance of the man box in regards to the development of these serial killers.

Here’s a link that will help you learn more about the man box: http://www.wgac.colostate.edu/men-and-masculinities.

This was a fascinating read, I am studying criminal justice and find this all very interesting. Your title is what really grabbed my attention. I think you did a great job analyzing the documentary, but I think you could have added some extra info, including when and why he started the serial killings, what age he started harming animals and maybe a little bit more of a comparison in other serial killers and their childhood. However, I enjoyed it non the less.