How it felt learning my dad is a serial killer


I’ll never forget the day I found out. It was March 1995; I’d come home from school and my mom called out for me and my siblings. Then she said, “Your father’s in jail.” My brother asked, “For what?” And she said, “For murder.”

Nothing prepares you for that type of news. I remember my knees feeling weak, like I was going to collapse. So, I went into my room, lay down on the bed and sobbed while my head raced, trying to make sense of it. Did he kill another man? Accidentally? In a fight? I tried to imagine that happening, but it didn’t feel like something he’d do. Also he didn’t have any guns, so I couldn’t imagine him shooting somebody. But then I pictured him strangling, and somehow that was easy. For some reason I could clearly visualize him strangling a woman.

My (three) dads were bad but sure as hell not this bad.