I have wanted to write about this subject since I started the blog, because it’s always held a huge fascination to me. It was one of the first serial killer cases I ever looked into so to finally be writing everything down about this individual has been a long time coming. There is so much to go into about this man, which is why I have chosen to make this a two part post.
I think its important to look at his background as well as his crimes in order to get a better idea of what he was like as a person and what kind of life he had before it took such a dark turn.
Before I start, I’d like to offer some reader discretion due to the some of the subjects that are raised in this post. It will contain some rather graphic elements so if you’re of a delicate disposition I’d skip this one.
So, now that’s done, lets get to talking about Jeffrey Dahmer shall we?
Jeffrey Lionel Dahmer was born on the 21st of May 1960 to parents Lionel and Joyce Dahmer.
Lionel was an aspiring chemist and was working on a PHD. He was hardworking and rarely at home due to the dedication he held towards his hoped for career. Joyce was described as being distant and self centred, having little time for her son, even refusing to breast feed him because she didn’t like it. She was a hypochondriac and would often self medicate.
Despite having what some would describe as a neglectful upbringing, Jeffrey thrived as a child and was described by Lionel as being bright, energetic and a fairy happy toddler. At the age of four, Jeffrey was diagnosed with a double hernia and had to have it operated on. Lionel noted that after this, Jeffrey became a more quiet and subdued child, keeping himself to himself.
As he got older, Jeffrey became more aware of the tension between his parents who would argue regularly. This only got worse once Jeffrey’s younger brother David was born. Joyce had a difficult pregnancy and became even more reliable and some would say addicted to pain killers after the birth. Joyce’s erratic behaviour continued throughout Jeffrey and Davids childhood and would eventually result in the couple separating.
During his school years Jeffrey was an outsider with few friends. He had a fascination with animals and often kept butterflies and other insects in jars. As he got older his interests developed and he began to pick up road kill which he would carry home to the land behind his home where he had a small shed. Here he would dissect the bodies, and put them in large jars of acid in order to see what their bones looked like. During a high school biology class, Jeffrey stole and took home a preserved fetal pig from the science lab. He was fascinated by what the inside of these creatures looked like and how they worked.
At the same time, Jeffrey was developing a drinking problem, often turning up to classes drunk or with alcohol hidden in his clothes. He would refer to it as his “medicine” and didn’t hide the fact he was drinking from his classmates who by now saw him as somewhat of an outsider and as a bit of an odd ball.
During his high school years, Jeffrey realised that he was gay and would often fantasise about what he’d like to do to men. These fantasies were violent in nature and he would become aroused by the idea of taking complete control of his partner. The idea of abuse and controlling behaviour was massively appealing to Dahmer.
He became infatuated with a jogger who would run by his house most days. He’d hide in the bushes and watch and wait for the jogger to pass whilst fantasising about what he’d do to him if he ever got the chance.
In 1978 at the age of 18 Jeffrey graduated from high school. At this stage he was living mostly alone after his parents had divorced. Joyce was living in a new town with David and Lionel was mainly living in various motels and rarely went home.
This newly found freedom meant that Jeffrey had free run of the home and could come and go as he pleased. It would only be so long before Jeffrey Dahmer would be able to turn his twisted fantasies into awful realities…..
Part 2 of Jeffrey Dahmer coming soon.