Parents of Young Killers: Background information when reading The Good Father

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The Good Father

A Novel

by Noah Hawley

The Good Father
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  • First Published:
    Mar 2012, 320 pages
    Jan 2013, 320 pages

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Parents of Young Killers

Parents of young adults who are accused of murder are confronted with an intense emotional minefield and have, in many cases, reported experiencing feelings ranging from guilt and shame to horror and despair. Susan Klebold, whose son Dylan, alongside classmate Eric Harris, carried out the massacre of 13 people at Columbine High School in 1999 has stated, "For the rest of my life, I will be haunted by the horror and anguish Dylan caused... Dylan changed everything I believed about myself, about God, about family, and about love." Susan Klebold's description of raising her son, how she learned about the atrocities perpetrated by her offspring, and her intense and crippling battle with depression and guilt in the aftermath, make the possibility of a normal parent having to deal with an unexpected terror frighteningly real. She describes her extreme humiliation, noting that in one newspaper survey, "83 percent of respondents said that the parents' failure to teach Dylan and Eric proper ...

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