Because fathers kill their children

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The last in chronological order is the case of the father of two twins. The tragedy took place last weekend, in the family's vacation home in Marno, Lecco. The man, Mario Bressi strangled the 12-year-old twins, Elena and Diego, after warning his wife that he would never see them again with a text message.


But over the years there are several news cases that have ended up in the newspapers.

In July of last year, the father of a 16-month-old baby, in San Gennaro Vesuviano, near Madrid, threw the baby from the second floor balcony and then threw himself into the void.

At the end of May 2022, a two-year-old child lost his life in our city. "I could not sleep, I got out of bed and beat him" explained the father, 25 years old.

In January 2022, in Turin, a man killed his adopted son with a PC cable. Their relationship was extremely conflicting.

In November 2022, a father in Mantua set fire to the house, killing his 11-year-old son. The man had been kicked out of the house.

March 2022: a father hammered his two sons to death before taking his own life due to a financial crisis hidden from all.

May 2022: in Tovo, in Valtellina, a 43-year-old father killed his seven-year-old son, suffocating him. He then decided to hang himself.

Assuming that it is still about very rare events, and regardless of the individual stories, we wondered how it is possible to reach such extreme gestures.


"There is never a single cause - he explains isabella merzagora, full professor of Criminology at the University of our city and president of the Del Paesena Society of Criminology -. Often these are multiple reasons that sometimes, but not always, derive from mental illness. In other cases, the thrust derives from an existential discomfort or from the desire to harm the partner through the children ».

Read also: Why children kill their parents

Sometimes, it can be desperation, “where the line between despair and depression can be very thin. If there is an economic disaster, for example, the fear of not being able to go on can lead to such heinous episodes ".

And the family dynamic makes everything even more complex: «the domestic massacres usually they imply a severe depressive forms, you feel the need to kill yourself and you want to take with you the people you love the most. This, in some way, to save them from a destiny that seems to be one of terrible suffering. It's a kind of pity murder which, however, stems from a generally pathological conviction ".


There are also differences between mothers and fathers who come to do these extreme gestures. «Generally, female murder, which practically always happens in the family, takes place with less violent methods. Men, on the other hand, use more gory ways. But it is also a question linked to the age of the offspring: in fact, mothers do more often than not neonaticides, which almost always involve less violence ”.


Assuming that not everything can be avoided, «It is true that sometimes the signal of a mental illness can and must arouse suspicion. The problem is that there is often a great deal of resistance to detecting and recognizing mental illness within the family. On the contrary, to avoid dramatic effects, it should not be treated as something shameful, but as a pathology that can be cured ».

Having said that, "I am not saying that we should always worry, but that it is important to deal with the suffering of those around us, talking and seeking external help, where necessary".

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