It’s their mothers the children look for when they need something, when they are scared or when they want to be loved and pampered. A mother is who the child looks up to when they sense danger or feel insecure. But it can be shocking when that one person, who is meant to protect and nurture, turns belligerent.
Some mothers, however, managed to appall the world by how they treated their offspring. Where mothers are looked upon as a symbol of kindness and affection, these mothers felt no sting while abusing or even murdering their children.
A few of these killings resulted from carelessness while others are nothing but cold-blooded murders. What could have driven these mothers to kill someone who should have been their most precious is beyond comprehension for others.
According to psychologists, some of these cases could be a result of a depressive disorder. The depression may have developed post-delivery or as a result of some kind of abuse that the mothers themselves have been subjected to in their past.
“This is a very rare type of crime,” ABC News quoted Jeffrey Smalldon, a forensic psychologist from Columbus, Ohio, as saying. “There must have been many mental and emotional stress factors operating here.”
According to Kim Pearson, a doctor with the perinatal and reproductive psychiatry unit at Massachusetts General Hospital and a psychiatry instructor at Harvard Medical School, 50 percent of the woman who experienced postpartum depression are likely to have recurrences in the subsequent pregnancies.
“If they’ve had true postpartum psychosis, then the risk is 75 to 80 percent that they’ll have a recurrence,” she said. “Certainly, if somebody is experiencing psychotic symptoms, it can lead them to psychotic behavior.”
Yahoo News reported that according to a data published by USA Today in 2014, on average, about 450 children are killed by their parents every year. Three out of four victims are within five years old and most died as a result of being beaten by parents.