Its All About Abandonment
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Why Parents Kill
By: J. Ray Rice, M.S.W., A.C.S.W.


It seems like everyday you can pick-up a newspaper or check the Internet and read about filicide-suicide  (parents that kill their children and then themselves) during the discussion period of a divorce or after a divorce has been granted. Is this America's shame?

divorce rate in America are believed to be around 50% for couples in their first marriage, 67% for couples in their second marriage, and 74% of couples in their third marriage. This supports the thought that unresolved abandonment issues become magnified after each failed relationship and affects our ability to bond, love, and trust. A break-up in any relationship can be a traumatic experience when one does not know how to terminate a relationship in a healthy way. It can be even more of a traumatic experience for military personnel who may also be experiencing PTSD.

Tech. Sgt. Dustin Thorson at the Air Force Base in Oklahoma had threatened to kill his two sons if his wife divorced him made good on that threat and shot too death his sons, age 9 and 11, and then himself. The lawyers and court approved an arrangement that would allow each parent to live in their house with their children every four days. This was after he had threatened to kill his wife and children if she divorced him.

Law makers and judges have got to understand that when a parent and child has been threatened with bodily harm the child’s right to safety should override a parent’s custodian or visitation rights. Law markers and all level of service providers must understand that the level of pathology that exist today in people because of unresolved abandonment issues - ones rights needs to be reexamined.

These rights include and are not limited to: 1) the right to bear arms; 2) the right of guardianship of their children after a divorce; and 3) the right to one’s freedom after a protection order has been granted against them.

We cannot afford to reduce the violence in America, keep the family and country strong, why? To do so would require that we open up the constitution of the United States of America to change the right to bear arms. The culture to do that is not present in our society. There is a movement building to allow students to carry firearms to school. Just the other day, in Miami, at least sixty police cars respond to break-up a fight in a high school. You know that if college students are allowed to carry firearms to school, high school students will try the same, and neither are the answers to the problems.

In the commentary from the link on filicide-suicide, it makes two very important points. First, we need to identify the core issue that is making parents going though divorces so fragile that they are choosing to kill their children because they are no longer a family. In my book, it is…all about abandonment! Unresolved issues of abandonment are the stressors that cause these actions and reactions to loss and separation. Secondly, therapists in treating their clients need to identify and address with their unresolved abandonment issues. We have been missing the boat.

Tech. Sgt. Dustin Thorson had been awarded a Joint Commendation Medal for his work in searching out terrorists. Yet we failed to realize that he was a terrorist in his own home and to his own family. Position in government does not dictate ones ability to resolve conflicts in matters of the heart. 

Why do parents kill?

  1. They did not know how to maintain relationships, nor how to terminate one when they end.

  2. As a society we have failed to understand the importance that unresolved abandonment issues and experiences have on the individual or society.

  3. We are failing to rear our children with the understanding that all communications and interactions produce feelings of abandonment and how to resolve these feelings and their impact on our sense of self.

  4. We continue to rear our boys and young men that it is not manly to show emotions, cry, or acknowledge and talk about your feelings and emotions. This sets up males to be an accident waiting for a happening.

  5. We do not support the reality that seeking counseling or therapy is a sign of a strong character in a person and not a weakness.

  6. We do not teach children, teens, and adult how to resolve conflict without the use of violence, threats, or physical force.

  7. We will not remove firearms and weapons of mass destructions (WMD's) from our society. We feel that we are abandoning our right to bear arms, but in reality we are abandoning our responsible to protect our nation's and personal security by removing WMD. We are no longer killing to be free, we are just killing freely.

These are the reason that parents are killing their children and themselves.





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