symptoms and causes of this psychological disorder

Obsessive thoughts are among the most common psychological disorders in people who go to psychotherapy. Although not technically a mental illness, they can be a symptom of any of them, as well as a wide variety of forms.

In this sense, some people may suffer at some point in their life from the obsessive worry of killing someone in a period of uncontrollability, an intrusive thought linked to the fear of “going crazy”.

In this article I will talk about the fear of killing someone as a psychological disorder that can become a reason for seeking professional psychotherapeutic help.

What is the fear of killing someone?

It’s relatively common to have disturbing images of what we might do if we weren’t in control of our actions at certain times.

However, for other people, these kinds of negative thoughts they stay in your head for a while as obsessive, recurring thoughtssomething that significantly influences your mental health and both emotionally and socially, family or professionally.

The fear of killing someone is a psychological disorder that some people suffer from in their daily lives and can be categorized as obsessive thoughts. In some extreme cases, they lead to suicidal ideation they begin to see death as the only way to protect their loved ones.

This type of recurring thinking can affect anyone, regardless of life circumstances, socioeconomic status, or family situation, and is commonly associated with high levels of stress, trauma, or other disorders studied by psychiatry and the clinic.

The fear of killing someone It is a disorder that can be treated effectively by a qualified psychologistand despite the catastrophic thoughts that often arise in those who suffer from it, this should not be the prelude to a disconnection from reality or a psychotic pathology associated with schizophrenia.


The fear of killing someone is a very specific type of obsession, an intrusive thought that sometimes the person cannot get out of their head.

This obsessive-compulsive disorder is associated with high levels of discomfort or anxiety, and in these cases, the person concerned is always looking for certainty that he has not lost his mind and real guarantees that this thought will never be put into practice. That is, he adopts a defensive attitude, trying to maintain control at all times and testing his sanity.

This makes situations ambiguous in which the judgment itself cannot be “validated” by oneself, that the person envisages the worst possible scenario, which only alters his emotional state and further distorts his perception of what happens to him.

So these kind of obsessive thoughts they become stronger in the person’s mind when they try harder to get it out of their head.

Some other fears related to killing someone can be the fear of going crazy, committing suicide, running over someone, etc.

Possible causes

As I said, there are many causes that can lead to the appearance of this type of fear or recurrent thought; below we will see the most common ones.

1. Exposure to high levels of anxiety

Living with high levels of anxiety caused by everyday lifewhether in the personal, social or professional environment, is one of the main causes that explain the appearance of this type of obsessive thoughts.

Anxiety and stress are real generators of anxiety, emotional or psychological distress and also of obsessions which, in the long term, can decisively affect the mental health of the person who suffers from it.

Also, have recently experienced a situation of great anxiety or even trauma It can also affect the person’s emotional imbalance to the point of becoming obsessed with very specific negative thoughts, such as killing someone.

2. Vital Transitions

Another cause of stress, anxiety or discomfort is often the vital transitions that occur in a person’s life at any given time.

This type of experience or stages of change are often related to the death of a loved one, the birth of a child or a major change in workeither promotion or loss of the same.

Certain important experiences can come to mark the person consciously or unconsciously and this imprint often generates an emotional imbalance which can have very relevant causes for his mental health.

3. Know some close cases

Knowing first hand about a crime in which one person killed another or just watching such events on television news, for some people, can be a great shock or a deep trauma.

In fact, some of the aforementioned obsessive thoughts have their origins in situations the person has experienced and is obsessed with.

4. Detect their own symptoms

Some people can become obsessive just by reading information on the internet, learning about the symptoms of a particular disease, or detecting some kind of real or imagined cognitive impairment in themselves. This leads to the trap of “self-diagnosis” by people without mental health training.

This type of intellectual mechanism often occurs in people with some level of hypochondria or a predisposition to suggestion, and they can often develop a fear of killing someone or any other obsessive fear.

5. Lack of sleep or unhealthy habits

Poor quality sleep over several days and weeks is often associated with certain psychological, physical or cognitive impairments.. This is why sleep deprivation can also be a possible cause of strange or unusual thought patterns.

Likewise, certain unhealthy habits such as eating little or badly, not exercising or having a non-existent social life can also favor the appearance of negative obsessive thoughts, because when the body is weakened, the mind is also affected and it is difficult to focus on the most objective and rational interpretation of the facts.

6. Drug addiction

Finally, emphasis should be placed on how substance abuse of any kind can also have a very negative effect on a person’s mental health and be the start of a series of negative, maladaptive and recurring thoughts. .

Cannabis is one of the substances most associated with the onset of psychological disorders associated with paranoia and transient delusions.but recurrent use of other conventional or designer drugs also ostensibly affects the brain of the person using them and can cause such thoughts to arise.


The fear of killing someone can be treated with psychotherapy; Psychologists have techniques and strategies that help people challenge their biases and deal with anxiety and intrusive thoughts without giving them more power than they have, so they end up by disappearing and leaving as they came.

If you are interested in this type of psychological assistance, contact us; Fr Azor & Associates We welcome people of all ages and offer face-to-face and online sessions.

Leave a Comment