Jeffrey Lionel Dahmer was born May 21, 1960 in West Allis, Wisconsin to parents Joyce Annette and Lionel Herbert Dahmer. His mother was a very tense, and argumentative. She needed constant attention, and in Dahmer’s younger years, she spent a lot of time in bed recovering from some unknown illness.
Around the time the Dahmer family relocated to Doylestown, Ohio, Jeffrey was suffering from a double hernia, which required surgery. This happened to coincide with the birth of his younger brother David in 1966. Prior to his surgery, Jeffrey was described as a happy, bubbly child. After the surgery, Jeffrey started to become more introverted, and started to exhibit peculiar behavior. The Dahmer family relocated once more, and settled down in Bath, Ohio in 1968.
Jeffrey was always a little strange even during his childhood. He had a fascination with dead animals, and would collect them avidly. His father was a chemist, and taught Jeffrey how to preserve the bones.
When Dahmer entered high school, he didn’t have many friends, and was found drinking heavily before, during and after school. When confronted with his drinking, he simply replied, “It’s my medicine.” This is also around the time Jeffrey discovered that he was homosexual.
Jeffrey was constantly pulling pranks, and doing ridiculous things to gain attention from his peers. Eventually, when pulling a prank, the other students would refer to it as “Doing a Dahmer.” Jeffrey’s grades and started declining throughout high school, probably due to his excessive drinking, and also the deterioration of his parents’ marriage.
During Jeffrey’s senior year of high school, his parents divorced. This may have been a breaking point for Jeffrey, because two weeks after his graduation in 1978, Jeffrey killed for the first time.
Steven Mark Hicks was bludgeoned to death in Jeffrey’s home after a night of drinking. Hicks informed Dahmer that he was ready to leave, to which Dahmer replied by knocking him unconscious, then strangling him. After Hicks was dead, Dahmer stripped him of his clothing, and proceeded to masturbate above his dead body.
Dahmer disposed of the body the next day by dismembering him, then burying him in a shallow grave. Several weeks later, he dug up the grave, dissolved the flesh with acid, and pulverized the bones with a hammer.
So there it is! Dahmer’s history up to his first kill. I find it really interesting that after his surgery is when he seemed to have a change in personality. This just so happened to coinside with his brother’s birth. I wonder how much of these two factors had to do with the change he went through. Jeffrey was just 6 when David was born. I don’t understand how his birth would have upset Jeffrey so much, so was it the surgery? It’s said that after the surgery, Jeffrey seemed smaller and more frail than he had prior. Maybe it was a mixture of his recovery and his parents lack of attention to him when his brother was born. Who knows…. I still don’t think that’s enough to drive anyone to do what he did.