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 Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?

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PostSubject: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeTue Jan 08, 2019 1:41 am

This might have been discussed elsewhere on here but I decided to create a dedicated thread for this question.
So why did Lanza kill his mother before driving to Sandy Hook elementary and committing the rest of his homicides as well as his own suicide?
I have thought of the possibilities that either he saw his mother as just another death to increase his body count which he seemed to hold in high value compared to most school and other mass shooters who often spare victims and spend considerable time simply wandering around and shooting inanimate objects after their first few kills, or that he killed her because he hated her and wanted revenge over her or perhaps wanted to save her from the aftermath of the shooting in which she would have had to endure a great amount of blame for providing her son with the weapons used in the massacre in Sandy Hook among other things. It is also possible he did it to add more shock value to his already very media sexy attack against small children mostly by also killing his own mother or that he wanted to send a message to his other relatives, mostly his father I think that he would have killed them too.

Please reply with your thoughts on whether one of these theories is true or if you have your own ideas on why he did it.

I also want to note that I am not and do not wish to pose as a Sandy Hook or Adam Lanza expert of any level and have just been interested in the case a little and this question just seemed interesting to me.
Also if others have already somehow determined the "right answer" to this question perhaps by reading something written by Lanza or otherwise then I apologise for asking an already answered question and not doing enough research.

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PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeTue Jan 08, 2019 1:48 am

By the way please excuse my use of very long sentences, it comes from the way I write in Finnish, which is a language where you can write a long story in only a few sentences extended by a large number of commas and still make it sound somewhat like good writing. I do not know whether this questionable writing habit of mine produces confusing results in the english language so please excuse me if that indeed is the case.

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PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeTue Jan 08, 2019 2:17 pm

I think it could be anything you mentioned. Maybe to save her from aftermath. Maybe he hated her for how he turned out. Maybe there was no reason, it just came into his head while planning the shooting and he did it.
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PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeTue Jan 08, 2019 2:18 pm

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
Well thanks for the reply and the idea that it just came into his mind, very possible.

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PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeMon Feb 04, 2019 10:02 pm

I never looked into this case before very recently, and before I always assumed it was to save her from the aftermath. So she wouldn't have to deal with the guilt or the media, or even because he didn't want her to be ashamed of him.

But now after looking a little into the case, I think it might have been out of resentment. Maybe he blamed her for how he turned out, or even just for giving birth to him. He obviously had a lot of social problems, and seemed to not think well of women. Example, his 'why females are selfish' writings. So that could have also been a factor. Which makes it even more tragic. Sure she made a lot of mistakes, but she seemed to have done everything out of love for him. She basically stopped her own life to be there for him and do whatever he wanted.
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PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeMon Feb 04, 2019 10:13 pm

Ivan wrote:
With him it could be anything from hatred to a sexual urge.

I've been wondering about that too. He was so crippled and she did anything and everything for him, accidentally crippling him more. I wonder if he had any sort of sexual complex towards her.

But someone else mentioned on another thread that he could have had some of those thoughts toward his father. Since he seemed to have homosexual pedophilia tendencies, and he wrote about a 10 year old boy and 30 year old man. Plus the "For a Last Solider" mention, which is a movie about an adult male solider who has a romantic and sexual relationship with a 12 year old boy. So it could have been a sexual complex about his dad or it could have been a subconscious desire to have had a better relationship with his dad.

I added the movie example, but I thought it was an interesting take.
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PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeFri Feb 08, 2019 8:36 pm

Looks like another one of the possibilities to consider has to be as a "tribute" to prior shooters e. g. Kip Kinkel
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PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeSun Feb 10, 2019 5:47 am

I won't discuss it in great lenght here because I have already done in this similar topic (although there is nothing wrong with creating a new one, so that we have new opinions).

But basically, and this is only how I imagine things, I don't think he really hated Nancy, I think at worse he didn't love her (I mean he was "neutral" about her). So I don't think this was the reason, just like I don't think he hated the children and killed them for that, I think he had other reasons to do so.

For Nancy I think her death, although I do consider her as a victim, should be compared more to Adam's suicide than to the murder of the children, for I think Adam's suicide was the last step of a longer form of suicide (in keeping with him destroying his computers, redacting things online and killing his mother). Maybe he killed Nancy because she was human hard drive and didn't want to leave significant traces. She was the one who knew him the best.

Sometimes I even wonder if Adam killing his mother was not in fact a sign that he loved her (but unconsciously, I don't think he killed her out of sympathy so that she didn't have to live with what he was to do, and I don't think he really knew why he killed her either): despite his apparent dislike of her maybe he still thought he was at one with his mother and so his suicide also had to be her death. He didn't kill nor thought about killing his father and brother (to my knowledge) maybe because THEY were the ones he didn't care about.
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PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeSun Feb 10, 2019 6:14 am

I think it's because he hated her, for how overbearing she was over him while he really couldn't give a damn about her, I think that's why he became increasingly more distant with her a few months before the shooting. The reason he didn't kill his father and brother was because they were in different states, I think if he had the chance, he would of murdered his entire family; even Adam's father thinks the same.

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PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeSun Feb 10, 2019 12:31 pm

Neah wrote:
He didn't kill nor thought about killing his father and brother (to my knowledge) maybe because THEY were the ones he didn't care about.

I think he may have wanted to kill them. The topic of familicide comes up every now and then in Lanza's writings. The movie script outline he wrote has a few mentions of familicides, I took that as a subtle indication of what his real desires were.

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PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeSun Feb 10, 2019 1:32 pm

Even though he might've had a grudge against her, I don't think he truly hated her. If he wanted to, he could've tortured her or killed her and then maimed her body. However, since he didn't do that, I'm guessing that he lacked sadistic rage toward his mother. I think his main reason for killing her was to up his 'score count'.
I believe he shot up Sandy Hook Elementary (just my opinion) because he hated the school for personal reasons, viewed it as a brainwashing center, and wanted to save the children from suffering in modern society. He also likely killed the children for sadistic reasons, but if he wrote a manifesto, I doubt that he would include that.


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PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeSun Feb 10, 2019 4:34 pm

I wonder if he saw the murder of Nancy and the murders of the children as two equally important events, or if he first intended to kill the children and then thought that since he was to destroy his quiet life he might as well kill his mother anyway.
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PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeMon Feb 11, 2019 8:49 am

Adam Lanza (aged 16) to Nancy wrote:

Quote :
You do not seem to understand that I was attempting to comfort you with what I consider to be a maxim with which to live. You unfortunately probably still do not understand what I mean. As a disclaimer: I type nothing in this that is in a tone that is condescending, vindictive, malicious, snide, malignant, or any synonym that you can think of. I mean well.
If you believe that you wasted your life, as you seem to have insinuated, you will gain nothing from regretting it and will only depress yourself; you cannot change anything from the past. There is something that I can assure you of that will always be true: it does not matter if you live for the next one year, five years, ten years, fifteen years, twenty years, thirty years, fifty years or even 100 years; the day before you die you will regret ever worrying about your life instead of thinking of what you want to do.
Every new year that you do live, you will regret not having started anything that you wanted to do the year prior, only regretting the past more.
What I mean is that you should think of what you want to do today; not starting next year or next month, but today. Thinking that you are not going to be able to do anything in the future will only ensure that fate. Also thinking that you are too “old” is going to ensure the same fate.
It is not as though I do not mean that you are homeless and begging; I would spend my life savings to prevent that out of obligation for what you have done for me. My personality is merely inherently unmoving; I will not be upset over something that you cannot change. And you should not be upset either. What you should do is think about what you want to do.
I also want to mention that I purchased something two weeks ago on Newegg to double your computer’s memory without even saying anything until now. I do not try to avoid doing anything for you as you seem to think. I am glad that I was born, and I appreciate your having taken care of me. (It is not my fault if you have not detected as much of an increase in speed as I would have liked, however; I blame its outdated processor. I would change that if I could, but it’s not possible to do so for your model.) Please read the first paragraph again.

Nancy's reply wrote:

Quote :
I appreciate your effort to be a comfort to me. I apologize if I seemed angry or antagonistic. I was simply over emotional and as it is often the case worrying about the future. I admit that I have been feeling a bit overwhelmed by my circumstances lately, but in no way do I regret having raised two wonderful children. I have high hopes for you both and will consider my life a success if you and Ryan live happy and productive lives.
There are a few things that I do regret … one of the biggest is that I dropped out of college, believing it to be more important to help your father get through college. Financially, it was impossible for us to afford a college education for both of us, and it seemed more important that he receive a diploma. In some ways I regret leaving the workforce as it has severely limited my prospects for the future, but again, it was a decision that I made to take more responsibility for the house and the children, and to allow your father to concentrate on his career. I do feel that I was able to be a better mother and have been able to put great effort into raising you and your brother, so that regret is mitigated in that respect. On the occasion that Ryan or you show some appreciation for my efforts, I feel completely justified in that choice and dually rewarded.
I know that it is harder for you to show appreciation, and that it does not come as a natural response. I really do not want you to feel obligated in that way. I do not expect any help, financial or otherwise, from you or your brother, and would not accept it if it were offered. I am certain that I will not be homeless or begging on a street corner, as your father is obligated by law and morality to see that my 30 years of service and sacrifice are compensated for. He has assured me that I will live a comfortable life and that my health expenses are covered. He is an honorable man. I am grateful that I was married to someone who honors his responsibilities. He has also taking [sic] responsibility to provide a college education for both you and your brother, so that neither of you will have to struggle and sacrifice as we did.
If you choose to, you will emerge from college with a master’s degree of your choice, debt free, to pursue any career in life that you wish. When I think of what I would like to do for the future, I think I would like to get my college degree first. I just thought of that tonight, as a direct result of my conversation with you. I think it would be possible as I dropped out only a year shy of my degree, and it seems as I might be spending quite a bit of time on campus waiting for you to take classes, so why not take advantage of that?! I suppose I could take classes at the same time you are taking classes.
I agree with you when you say that I should try to think positively of the future and what I want to do today. There is nothing that I can do about my diagnosis, and I do try to be as healthy as I can, despite the prognosis. I am sure that you noticed that I exercise regularly and do my best to stay in good shape. It’s not like I have the attitude that since I will be crippled anyway I may as well give up and get fat and sedentary now. I am working hard to stay as healthy as I can, for as long as I can.
At some point, I might like to start a business. I sometimes toy with the idea of an internet business like my friend, [L], owns. (Did I punctuate that last sentence correctly?) Her website is [xxx]. You should have a look at it sometime and let me know what you think of it.
Anyway, I would like you to know that no matter what, I am very proud of the person you are. I have no preconceived notion of how you should react or respond. I know that you tend to be more reserved and less emotional and I do not perceive that as condescending malignant, or callous. You are pragmatic and stoical. These are fine attributes. I am glad to know that you are glad to be born and appreciate being taken care of. I love you very much and am more than happy to take care of you in any way I can. I suppose I have felt that you didn’t even notice how hard I try to make things as tolerable as possible for you and that has made me feel sad in a way. I am much happier now, knowing that you do not despise me for bringing you into this world. Above all, I want you to be happy, no matter what you choose to do.
You may not think I notice, but my computer is working faster and I have been able to download bank statements faster and search the websites quicker. I was able to get baseball scores for all the games in a split second, and watch a video clip that a friend sent without any freezing. I didn’t know that you had worked on it, so I thank you for your efforts. You should let me know when you do thoughtful things so that you can get credit! As an aside, I am having a problem that has been ongoing for months. The cursor abruptly moves to a different place in text now and again when I am in the middle of typing a sentence. It is very strange and annoying. Maybe you can have a look at it sometime? Thank you for taking the time to send me this e-mail. I now understand your motive and meaning, and I truly appreciate it!



I think there was a serious lack of communication and misunderstanding between Adam and Nancy but I do think they liked each other. According to these e-mails (which is not a normal way of communicating between a parent and child) Adam seemed to do kind things to Nancy and didn't even told her about these things so Nancy didn't notice. I guess as he was unable to tell her about what he did she didn't notice and then he felt bad but didn't tell her either about how he felt so he had the impression that she didn't care. And as he didn't tell her anything she also had the impression that he didn't care about her. But this e-mail and Nancy's reply are very interesting as for once they are communicating and acknowledging each other's feelings, qualities and love. Nancy understands that her son is less emotional and less talkative about how he feels, but she also tells him that she is aware of his efforts to comfort her. I think it is very cute but also very sad.

It also shows that Nancy could probably be (for a good reason though) annoying and angry. I guess she felt she worked hard for Adam and he didn't feel gratitude. So as they didn't communicate Adam may not have understood why she was angry against him sometimes, and maybe felt not loved.
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PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeThu Feb 14, 2019 12:46 pm

Probably kill her to control more his aftermath...

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PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeFri Feb 15, 2019 3:49 pm

@cakeman wrote:
Looks like another one of the possibilities to consider has to be as a "tribute" to prior shooters e. g. Kip Kinkel

And Michael Ryan, Charlies Whitman and Michael McLindon.
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PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeSat Jun 15, 2019 1:36 am

I believe that Adam shot Nancy because he resented her, and to be frank, everyone around him. In his most infamous quote he mentions that he has "scorn for humanity." This speaks for itself, I think. Another reason why I believe that Adam resented his mother was because he shot her at point-blank range, and four times. I feel like someone would have to be extremely angry or overall emotionless in general to be able to do something like that to their own mother. Peter Lanza, Adam's father was interviewed by the New Yorker after the shooting and said this, "With hindsight, I know that Adam would have killed me in a heartbeat, if he'd had the chance. [...] The reason he shot Nancy four times was one for each of us: one for Nancy; one for Ryan; one for him; and one for me."
For all I know, the reason Adam killed Nancy could have even been that he didn't want her to agonize over what he did. I don't really see much evidence for this, and I hate to play the hypothetical game, but even though Sue Klebold had not spoken out just yet, he probably knew that she and/or other parents of perpetrators of mass murderers had to deal with that type of stuff. Again, I hate playing the hypothetical game, it just had always been an interesting thought that would pop in my mind every now and then.

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PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeWed Jul 31, 2019 3:07 pm

I just now thought of something.

Adam kept a log that contained hundreds of names of shooters and how many they killed and injured, which the vast majority of us know. While doing this research surely he didn’t just focus on the numbers, but also information about that shooter (his background, motivations, etc).

Adam was never close to anyone in his entire life. The only person who ever associated with him was Nancy. And it seemed their relationship became strained, using the emails sent back and forth as evidence. Plus Nancy would take many trips and leave Adam by himself for several days and weeks at a time.

Is it too far a stretch to believe that the reason Adam murdered Nancy was to limit information on him? No one would have any semi-close information on him or his life except for his mother. He hadn’t seen or spoken to his father or brother in years. He didn’t go to college classes and spent all of his time in his bedroom. The only way the public would have any insight to his life is via Nancy. Perhaps, in a way, he wanted to remain an enigma.

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PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeThu Aug 01, 2019 4:25 pm

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
I just now thought of something.

Adam kept a log that contained hundreds of names of shooters and how many they killed and injured, which the vast majority of us know. While doing this research surely he didn’t just focus on the numbers, but also information about that shooter (his background, motivations, etc).

Adam was never close to anyone in his entire life. The only person who ever associated with him was Nancy. And it seemed their relationship became strained, using the emails sent back and forth as evidence. Plus Nancy would take many trips and leave Adam by himself for several days and weeks at a time.

Is it too far a stretch to believe that the reason Adam murdered Nancy was to limit information on him? No one would have any semi-close information on him or his life except for his mother. He hadn’t seen or spoken to his father or brother in years. He didn’t go to college classes and spent all of his time in his bedroom. The only way the public would have any insight to his life is via Nancy. Perhaps, in a way, he wanted to remain an enigma.

I completely agree! I think he knew his mother knew the sad truth about him which is that he is autistic and messed up as hell, and he wanted to stop that part of his life from being made public

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PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeMon Apr 13, 2020 4:15 pm

Hello,im new here. Well, maybe he "needed" to kill his own Mother to prepare himself "mentally" for what he did at the school and was making sure that After she died that there is no opportunity to "back out". He basically destroyed his "Safe-Space" by doing so. Excuse my bad englisch,im from Germany.

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PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeWed Apr 15, 2020 3:51 am

Someone please start this as a new thread if able, as I'm not seeing how to, but:
How did Adam Lanza's mother afford such a lavish, well maintained house ??
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PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeWed Apr 15, 2020 6:14 am

N/A


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PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeSun Apr 26, 2020 10:03 pm

I think the motivation of why Lanza killed his mother lies behind the "backstory" of one of his favourite mass shooters: Robert Hawkins. He had issues with his step mother which lead to the divorce between her and his father. So maybe Lanza blasted her in the head because he hated the fact that she was to blame for the divorce of Nancy and Peter Lanza. It's a simple enough thing but hey, it might be the reason behind it.
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PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeMon Apr 27, 2020 2:42 am

Adam simply wanted to relate to other spree shooters whom had killed their mothers. This was his legacy, his show. He wanted to get everything he could out of it before he died.
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PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeFri May 22, 2020 2:05 pm

Probably to spare her the pain/embarassment.
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PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeFri May 14, 2021 12:06 pm

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PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeFri May 14, 2021 1:01 pm

I think it's pretty telling that he said "out of obligation for what you have done for me" as opposed to "because I love you". Lanza wasn't really capable of genuine love.

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PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeFri May 14, 2021 6:34 pm

I always thought it was so that he could do what he wanted to and get all his gear and outfit on and then leave the house without her asking questions or noticing. I feel like for someone who taped trash bags over his windows and wouldn't leave his room, his mom might have woken up and got in the way of his plan. I don't think he wanted to spare her any pain. I believe he resented her and just saw it as something necessary to get on with his plan. I'm sure she would have asked a lot of questions if she would have heard him or noticed him carrying his guns and ammo to the car dressed in a weird tactical outfit and possibly posed an interference for him. Just my opinion. He seemed very cold.

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Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Empty
PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeThu Jun 24, 2021 2:34 pm

Putting aside their background story I have one theory (I'm not a criminologist):

The first thing he did was to kill his mother. Then he went to the school. If you look at the order of the events there is one thing that could pop up in my mind. There are many suicides or crimes related to breaking up a relationship. In some cases love and hate become almost indistinguishable emotions. Sometimes, after breaking up, people are left in a mental state that they see murder-suicide, murder alone or suicide alone as the only choices left. He probably could never had had went to the school BEFORE killing his mother. Killing his mother could be seen as "the last wall to take down" before doing it. Put yourself in his place, pointing the gun at that very moment and asking yourself "If I can take her down, then there is nothing more left that could bound me in this world".

Lote-hate relationships are happening everywhere in the world everyday.

Another theory that I could make is rather philosophical. What if he saw death as salvation for both himself and his mother? What if he thought that they would meet each other in the afterlife? Strong emotions combined with religion can lead to very bizarre thinking.
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Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Empty
PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeFri Jun 25, 2021 10:27 pm

There's the practical concern of her knowing her shut-in son driving off with an arsenal is suspicious and trying to stop him. He'd been planning for years by that point, and wouldn't take the chance of her calling the cops, physically stopping him (considering his physical condition, I could see it happening,) or the sounds of a violent struggle alerting neighbors and ruining his plan. From that perspective, taking her out in her sleep was his "best" choice.

Additionally, I think it was an act of love. Despite his "selfish.pdf" document and his callous behavior towards his mother, she still took care of him his whole life, and even if he disagreed with her in some regards, there was still clearly some affection. In his half-decade study of mass murder, he was no doubt acutely aware of the effect on the attackers family: public rage, death threats, lawsuits, even physical harm, and the attack he was planning on pulling off was going to be worse than just about any before it. Leaving Nancy alive to navigate emotional hell, guilt, hatred, misunderstanding, and legal troubles as the icing on the cake would be as wrong an act as the shooting itself. Had his family been more easily accessible, not even Peter Lanza has no doubts he would have killed them as well.

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PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeWed Jul 07, 2021 8:16 pm

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
Additionally, I think it was an act of love. Despite his "selfish.pdf" document and his callous behavior towards his mother, she still took care of him his whole life, and even if he disagreed with her in some regards, there was still clearly some affection.

I'm actually very surprised that he did something good for his mom at all:

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PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeSun Jul 11, 2021 6:16 pm

The Four Bullets Removed From The Head Of Nancy Lanza During An Autopsy Performed On (12/16/2012)

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This is the story of one fading life,
a life that couldn't be saved.
Please remember me when i'm gone.

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This is the story of one fading life,                
a life that couldn't be saved.  
Please remember me when i'm gone.

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PostSubject: Re: Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother?   Why did Adam Lanza kill his mother? Icon_minitimeSun Jul 11, 2021 9:36 pm

I think Adam Lanza just hated her and then killed her.
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