After my introduction to the true crime genre, I was hooked. I read anything I could find related to serial killers and their victims. John Wayne Gacy, the Gainesville Ripper and the Green River Killer haunted my mind. What drove these people and how did they hide in plain sight from the rest of us?
This of course led to an interest in psychology. Child development to be exact. Back in those days, people believed that who you would become was determined by the time you were five-years-old. I began studying theories of attachment, temperament and development and eventually settled into a career as an Early Childhood Educator.(Logically) Of particular interest to me was Carl Jung’s idea of the shadow. The idea is that we all have a darker side which we repress in order to conform to societal expectations. With very young children the shadow is not so far in the dark. They are impulsive and self-centered and often do not attempt to hide these traits. I tend to believe that serial killers are just people who have not properly integrated their “shadow” .
After having my own children, I was keenly aware of my role in socializing them in a way that would integrate their ” shadow” in a healthy way. I began developing my own “parenting manifesto” and developed a paranoid attitude towards the outside forces which could influence my children into the darkness. In a sense I became isolated in my own cabin in the woods.
Eventually, I realized that isolating myself was not the answer. How could my children learn to socialize appropriately if they were not exposed to others? We are currently happy and healthy and enjoy time with friends and family. However, after filling my head with all the true crime I could find, the Unimommer is still there.