That’s not true. There are plenty of serial killers who are women, a lot more than people think. So why don’t we ever hear about them?
It’s because women, for the most part, are psychologically better at killing people. I hate to admit it, but technically, it’s true.
Ted Bundy, David Berkowitz, Jeffrey Dahmer, Richard Ramirez, etc. They’re all men. But why don’t we ever hear about the female serial killers?
Studies show that men and women serial murderers kill differently. And it offers one interesting theory about why that is. But it’s also just that—a theory, and one that offers a window into some of evolutionary psychology’s limitations.
While men largely attack random strangers very quickly, previous studies have shown that about 80% of women serial killers know their victims. They “gather” them around and study them. Although while men’s “hunting” is essentially literal, women’s “gathering” is more figurative. They also take care of others: 72% killed at least one person in their care, and nearly half of them have killed their children.
Women are also biologically proven to be less violent than men. This obviously isn’t true all the time, but these are our natural instincts and how we were bred. (America’s most famous female serial killer, Aileen Wuornos, was a lot more violent and killed people out of rage. It was a more “male” way of killing.)
But most female serial killers use less outwardly violent methods of killing, like poison. They also largely stay in one place, like women in many prehistoric societies. These are just generalizations.
They say that the way serial killers act—men “hunting” for potential mates, and women “gathering” resources to provide for offspring—is in line with these tendencies, but it becomes an aberration, their pathological version.
And then there’s motive. Men’s motives are fairly different than women’s. Men usually kill for pleasure, control, sexual satisfaction, or just for “fun”, while women usually kill for money or success.
So yes, there are many serial killers still out there, and most of them are women. But whatever the killer’s gender or sex, murder is just as cruel and odious.