Why did Lindsay Clancy kill her kids? Her mental state explained

Lindsay Clancy family

Following the suspected strangulation deaths of Lindsay Clancy’s three children, she faces several charges, including two counts of murder, three counts of suffocation or strangulation, and three counts of battery and assault with a dangerous weapon. Prosecutors will likely include another murder charge. 

The murders have confounded the nation as people try to wrap their heads around Lindsay’s alleged actions. However, as Plymouth County District Attorney Timothy Cruz mentioned, it is an incomprehensible tragedy. He said:

“In incidents like this, there are usually more questions than answers. We aren’t here to presume motives. This is an unimaginable, senseless tragedy, and it is an ongoing investigation.”

Lindsay Clancy reportedly killed her children because she suffered from severe postpartum depression (PPD)

Shortly after news outlets reported the murders, local radio host John DePetro tweeted, “Clancy was in a very intensive five-day-a-week program for PPD, trying to get help.” DePetro added that Lindsay’s husband, Patrick, was working from home to support Lindsay. 

Dr. Mallika Marshall wrote on CBS News that many women experience a mild form of postpartum depression known as postpartum blues or ‘baby blues’. Marshall’s piece says mothers experiencing baby blues may have trouble sleeping and be moody.

She added that postpartum blues become postpartum depression if the symptoms last beyond two weeks and are more severe. Moms with postpartum depression may be incredibly angry or anxious and guilt-ridden, Dr. Marshall wrote. 

In rare, severe cases, mothers experience postpartum psychosis, whose symptoms include delusions, hallucinations, and confusion. “Patients may be suicidal or have thoughts of harming others, including their own children,” Dr. Marshall added. 

She concluded that postpartum psychosis is considered a medical emergency; patients shouldn’t be left alone with the children and usually need hospitalization. 

Lindsay’s friends have confirmed via Facebook posts that Lindsay suffered from PPD. As reported by The Daily Mail, Kristen Gildersleeve, Lindsay’s high school friend, wrote that she understood Lindsay’s actions after researching PPD. Gildersleeve wrote:

“If you followed her [Lindsay] on social media, you could see how much she loved her babies. They’re literally all she posted! I’m still having a hard time grasping onto what she did and why, but what I can say for sure is she was battling some serious demons.”

“To all the people condemning her, I ask you to please look into postpartum psychosis and see if that changes your thoughts, even just a little bit.”

Investigators are looking into the possibility that Lindsay was suffering from postpartum psychosis. Dawn Aducci, Lindsay’s friend and former coworker, said Lindsay needs support now more than ever. She wrote:

“I pray their two children who are now angels know that was NOT their Momma, the same mom who rocked them to sleep, wiped their tears, kissed scraped knees, and made silly faces for laughs- that was not their Momma that night.”

Lindsay’s husband said he’d forgiven Lindsay and asked the community to do the same

Lindsay Clancy husband and their children

25 minutes after leaving to get food, Patrick, Lindsay’s husband, returned home to a horrific scene. Patrick found Lindsay unconscious on the ground below a second-floor window. Inside, his three children lay unconscious, ‘with obvious signs of trauma’. 

Cora, his 5-year-old daughter, and Dawson, his 3-year-old son, were pronounced dead at the hospital. 7-month-old Callan clung to dear life for three days before succumbing to his injuries. 

Lindsay’s suicide attempt failed: she was admitted to the hospital after suffering various injuries, including cuts to her neck and wrist. 

Via a GoFundMe update, Patrick confirmed that Lindsay was sick but didn’t specify her illness. “Our marriage was wonderful and diametrically grew stronger as her condition worsened,” Patrick wrote. He added that he’s forgiven Lindsay and asked people to follow his lead:

“I want to ask all of you that you find it deep within yourselves to forgive Lindsay, as I have. The real Lindsay was generously loving and caring towards everyone – me, our kids, family, friends, and her patients. The very fibers of her soul are loving. All I wish for her now is that she can somehow find peace.”

Patrick showered praise on his three children, detailing how they brought unbridled joy into his life and taught him lessons he hopes will guide the next phase of his life. He concluded:

“Cora, Dawson, and Callan, you gave me so much in your short time here. I don’t know if the pain will ever go away, but I’ll do my best to carry on in your honor. Dada loves you so much and will always remember you.”