Carrying the burden: a study on the reported experiences and the lifelong impact of growing up with a serial killer parent
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This thesis explores the experiences of the offspring of serial killers and how they were impacted by their parent's crimes. The study employed a thematic analysis of six subjects who wrote biographies detailing their experiences with a serial killer parent or guardian. The children’s accounts revealed the complex relationships with their serial killer parent and their relationship with their family. This thesis also discusses the offspring’s interactions with legal and social entities resulting from their parent's crimes, how they were impacted by their parent's crimes, the subject’s overall experience, and revelations about their life. The results displayed that the offspring of serial killers identified various adverse social, emotional, mental, and physical experiences. Additionally, it was found that due to their parent's crimes, the subjects encountered phenomena such as internal and external stigmatization, indirect victimization, internalized guilt, and trauma-related symptoms.