Thursday, August 19, 2010

Reasons for killing

Shanquan Duley will likely spend a large portion (if not all) of her life behind prison bars or in a mental institution after killing her two young children. After arresting and questioning Duley, Orangeburg County Sheriff Larry Williams tried to explain how a mother could suffocate her own children and then roll a car with their bodies into a river.
"I believe she was angry, upset, and for some reason found Shillings Bridge Road and was looking for a place to discard the bodies," Williams said.

Williams says Shaquan Duley was unemployed and not financially stable and lived with her mother. According to Williams, Shaquan's mother was a "firm individual."

Williams said at this point, it appears the woman killed the children because she was 'fed up' with the responsibility of motherhood and wanted to 'be free.'

"She lived at mom's house, probably ate her mom's food... she had very little control. in her thoughts, except her children," Williams said. "I think she truly felt, 'If I don't have these two toddlers, I can be free.'"
Likewise, CNN has a long article entitled,"What drives a mom to kill?"
The vast majority of mothers who kill their children have a form of diagnosable mental illness, but most are not receiving appropriate treatment for it at the time of the murders, Kaslow said. A high number of them are economically underprivileged, she said, and they are commonly single, unemployed parents. They may have been the victims of trauma or abuse; this information is not known about Duley.

"Most women who kill their children have extreme personal problems or a lot of stress in their lives," Kaslow said.

In many cases, mothers who turn against their own children have chronic depression, Bruce said. Continual feelings of insufficiency and unexpressed anger can build up over time; killing one's own children is the "ultimate expression of rage," she said.
When I was reading about this story in my local paper, I couldn't help but think that the reasons Duley gave (or at least the reasons Sheriff Williams could surmise) for why she killed her two boys sounded eerily like the reasons many women give to justify their abortions, except that Duley's situation was probably worse. Our society reacts with horror and disbelief when a mother kills her born children but when more than a million mothers a year have their unborn children killed for similar reasons, most of our society shrugs its shoulders and moves along.

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