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I Read Lionel Dahmer’s Book: A Father's Story, and It Was Phenomenal

I Read Lionel Dahmer's Book: A Father's Story, and It Was Phenomenal. A Father's Story Book Review
Credit: Alamy

When I came across A Father's Story by Lionel Dahmer, I knew I had to read it. The book promised to offer a unique perspective on one of the most notorious serial killers in history—Jeffrey Dahmer—from the viewpoint of his own father.

As I delved into the pages, I was not only captivated by the story Lionel shared but also enlightened by the profound insights into the complexities of parenthood and the unimaginable tragedy that unfolded in their family.

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I Read Lionel Dahmer's Book: A Father's Story, and It Was Phenomenal. A Father's Story Book Review

The book revolves around Lionel Dahmer's journey, as he tries to make sense of his son's heinous crimes while grappling with his role as a father. Written with an honest and raw tone, the memoir provides an intimate look into Lionel's life and experiences. He searches his own past for any clues that might shed light on what led Jeffrey down such a dark and disturbing path.

The narrative is not primarily focused on the gruesome details of the murders but rather on Lionel's emotional struggle to comprehend the actions of his son. It is a heartfelt attempt to understand how the young, quiet, and shy boy he knew transformed into a serial killer. Throughout the book, Lionel acknowledges his mistakes as a parent, just like any other parent would, but he also emphasizes his continuous love and support for his son despite his abhorrent actions.

However, one aspect I found lacking in the book was the minimal mention of Joyce, Jeffrey Dahmer's mother, who had left him abruptly at the age of 18 and dealt with mental instability. Understanding Lionel's perspective on how this affected Jeffrey could have added another layer of depth to the narrative.


Answering Important Questions

Lionel Dahmer Net Worth:

As of 2022, Lionel Dahmer, the 86-year-old analytical chemist, boasts an estimated net worth of approximately $5 million.

Throughout the past two decades, he has actively engaged in numerous interviews and made appearances on various TV shows, sharing his unique perspective and experiences with the world.

Are Jeffrey Dahmer's Parents Alive?

At the age of 86, Lionel Dahmer remains married to his second wife, Shari Dahmer, and they currently reside in Ohio, a place Lionel has called home for most of his adult life.

Tragically, Jeffrey Dahmer's mother, Joyce, passed away in November 2000 due to breast cancer. At the time of her death, she was serving as a case manager at the Central Valley AIDS Team, actively contributing to the fight against HIV/AIDS.

Did Jeffrey Dahmer Have AIDS?

Jeffrey Dahmer was diagnosed with HIV while in prison, but it was not the cause of his death. He was murdered by a fellow inmate in 1994, ending his life in prison.

Final Thoughts

A Father's Story by Lionel Dahmer is a compelling memoir that offers readers a unique perspective on the life of a parent whose child took a path none could have foreseen. It is a powerful reminder to parents to be vigilant about their children's well-being, paying attention to any red flags, and seeking help when needed.

“His social life, which should have been expanding, narrowed to a circle that was no larger than his mind, an imagined world in which his friends were phantoms, his lovers mere lumps of unmoving flesh.”

― Lionel Dahmer, A Father's Story


In conclusion, A Father's Story is a thought-provoking read that offers profound lessons about love, family, and the complexities of the human psyche. Lionel Dahmer's courage to share his story is commendable, and this book stands as a testament to the resilience of a father faced with unthinkable circumstances.


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