According to psychological tests, something horrid happened to Bundy in that home where reality – the identity of his biological father, his grandfather’s tirades, his grandmother’s illness – was never acknowledged, let alone discussed.

He lacks any core experience of care and nurturance or early emotional sustenance. Severe rejection experiences have seriously warped his personality development and led to deep denial or repression of any basic needs for affection. Severe early deprivation has led to a poor ability to relate to or understand other people.” concluded Marylin Feldman.

Psychiatrists who examined Bundy over the years were convinced that his illegitimacy was a troubling psychological dynamic. Hidden in almost every interview he ever gave, was a rejection of his mother so deep that as a teenager Ted Bundy once asked his wealthier, cultured Great-uncle Jack, a college professor to adopt him. “Can you imagine doing that to a mother?” says Ted Bundy’s aunt Julia. “When I heard that, I knew something was terribly, terribly wrong.

Before Ted was five he had three last names – Cowell, Nelson, and, finally, Bundy. He never related to the kindly, uncomplicated John Bundy, a hospital cook far removed from the sophisticated world to which Bundy aspired. 

Louise Bundy tersely admits that Ted was never told anything about his biological father. John Bundy, the stepfather Bundy never related to, was “always Daddy.” “Ted never had asked about the…” she is struggling for words, “the ‘other man,’ because he never heard about him or had seen him or anything.

But in those first four years didn’t he question why there was no daddy in his life? At birthday parties or with other children? “In our neighborhood there were no other children his age. He didn’t know any differently. When I lived with the folks it was ‘This is Granddad, this is Grandmother, and here is mother.’

Did it ever bothered Ted? “Not that I know of. It wasn’t something we ever talked about.” – Vanity Fair, 1989

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