What Happened To Joyce Dahmer? The Mother Or Serial Killer Cannibal Jeffrey Dahmer

What happened to Jeffrey Dahmer’s mother, Joyce Dahmer, after the world learned he was a serial killer at the same time she did? We learn a lot about Joyce and her struggle with mental health in Ryan Murphy’s Netflix series Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story. Like Jeffrey’s father, she partially blamed herself when her son admitted to necrophilia, cannibalism, and murder in 1991.

Who was Joyce Dahmer?

Jeffrey and his younger brother David were raised by their mother, Joyce Dahmer. She married Lionel Dahmer in 1960 after being born in Wisconsin in February 1936.

In his memoir, A Father’s Story, Lionel Dahmer and his ex-wife Joyce reflect on what they might have done differently to stop their son from becoming a serial killer. Lionel confesses he wasn’t there much for his son as a kid, but he blames Joyce for taking drugs during her pregnancy with Jeffrey Dahmer. Lionel writes in his memoir that Joyce avoided touching her newborn son Jeffrey out of concern for his health. His second claim is that she developed a tolerance to the medication she was prescribed. Joyce Dahmer’s struggle with mental illness was evident during the time she was responsible for raising Jeffrey and David.

Some say Joyce was permanently altered by the overwhelming sense of shame she felt upon learning of her son’s killings. Joyce was depressed and overly concerned about her health. It was said that she spent a great deal of time in bed and required a great deal of assistance, often resorting to the use of sleeping drugs. After 19 years of marriage, Joyce and Lionel split in 1978 because of Joyce’s extramarital affair. Joyce and her son David moved to California.

joyce dahmer died
Joyce Dahmer died

Joyce Dahmer Believed She Was To Blame for Jeffrey’s Death

Joyce disagreed with her ex-husband’s theory that her son was timid or that there were warning flags. She described Jeffrey as a “perfectly normal young boy” in an interview with MSNBC.

“I wake up every morning hardly knowing I’m Jeffrey Dahmer’s mother for a split second, and then it all floods in,” she told Deseret News in 1993. Then, in 1994, she said that she wanted to reach out to other parents and family members of killers who could be experiencing similar anguish and blame. She told the media source that she had wanted to write a book about her experience as the mother of a serial murderer, but that she had been unable to find a publisher that was interested in the project.

Joyce Dahmer Attempted To Die By Suicide But Survived

Joyce Dahmer was shown to be horrified by her son’s actions in the Netflix series. She made an attempt at her own life at one time. Her son Jeffrey Dahmer was murdered a few months after she left the gas oven on with the door open. On the other hand, she made it through the attempt and later felt thankful for her survival.

She Passed Away In 2000

Joyce Dahmer, who was 64, died of breast cancer. Joyce was quoted in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Julio Mastro, the executive director of the HIV community center where Joyce worked, said “She was enthusiastic, and she was compassionate, and she turned her own tragedy into being able to have a great deal of empathy for people with HIV.”

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