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Why Do I Fantasize about Killing People?

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I sometimes think about killing people. Sometimes I have urges. Some of these fantasies are pretty detailed. This has been only been happening of late, when I’m frustrated or depressed. Before, I would want to hurt myself, now it’s mostly directed towards other people. It’s no one in particular, just random people. I just feel the need to cause violence, to destroy.

Is this normal? Also, I don’t really have anyone I’m comfortable with to talk to about this, so help?

Why Do I Fantasize about Killing People?

Answered by on -


You might be experiencing these fantasies because you don’t have the skills to cope with your strong feelings. People, who feel as you are feeling, often lack coping skills. They are suffering and feeling immense psychological pain but are ill-equipped to handle these emotions in a healthy way.

Fantasies about killing are not uncommon. They are, however, not “normal” because they indicate suffering and extreme psychological distress. Both fantasies about homicide and suicide might be thought of as a maladaptive response to psychological stress.

They can also occur when someone feels powerlessness and hopelessness.

There are many ways people try to cope with strong feelings. Some of them are healthy and some of them are not. For instance, using drugs and alcohol as a way to escape strong and unpleasant feelings, is maladaptive. It might provides temporary relief but most often makes the problem worse. Meditation and exercising are healthy ways of dealing with stress.

Every human being faces problems. It’s how one deals with these problems that makes their life more or less successful. Problem-solving skills can be learned from our parents or other role models and most importantly they can be learned from counseling.

Clearly, you are suffering. When you recognize that a problem exists, you should seek help. Writing to me at Psych Central is a good first step, but it’s not enough. You should ask your parents to assist you in finding a counselor. You should inform them about your depression and thoughts of suicide. Counseling could help you tremendously.

Finally, if you feel as though you might harm yourself or someone else, call 911 or go to the emergency room. The staff can keep you and others safe. Please take care.

Dr. Kristina Randle

Why Do I Fantasize about Killing People?

Therapists live, online right now, from BetterHelp:

Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW

Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW is a licensed psychotherapist and Assistant Professor of Social Work and Forensics with extensive experience in the field of mental health. She works in private practice with adults, adolescents and families. Kristina has worked in a large array of settings including community mental health, college counseling and university research centers.

APA Reference
Randle, K. (2018). Why Do I Fantasize about Killing People?. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 24, 2020, from
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 May 2018 (Originally: 7 Mar 2015)
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018
Published on Psych All rights reserved.