The Real Reason Andrea Yates killed her Children

2011 Words9 Pages
The Real Reason Andrea Yates Killed her Children Shirley A. Elmendorf Abstract The real reason Andrea Yates killed her children was due to her thought disorder and the reinforcing command hallucinations. These two reasons are thematically consistent with her belief that she was a poor mother and her children were not turning out right. One might also argue that Satan could be a projection of her own partly self-perceived evil. Psychoanalytic theory has long emphasized “paranoid projection” as a defense against inner rage that is too painful and frightening to acknowledge. It was clear that Andrea Yates was experiencing some sort of depression, which caused her to become psychotic and think that she was doing a good thing by killing her children. She was six months postpartum, had five children ranging from six months to seven-years-old, was a home school teacher and had a history of mental illness. She had attempted suicide two times, been hospitalized several times, was noncompliant taking her medication and on June 20, 2001 murdered all five of her children. She is now in prison serving a life term. The Real Reason Andrea Yates Killed her Children. The insanity defense is used in criminal trials by defendants who admit that they committed the crime but claimed they lacked the intent. According to the defense Andrea Yates was not trying to kill her children, in her delusional state of mind she was in fact saving her children from going to hell. Her delusions told her she could spare her children this fate and by killing them they would go to heaven. How did Andrea Yates progress from a rational person to an individual that told Katherine Ramsland, Ph.D., “I am a bad mother and my children are disabled-that they are not developing normally, I have been thinking of

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