Victims Who Fell In Love With Their Kidnappers

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Do you think you could ever like someone who captured you against your will? We’re pretty sure your answers is no. Most kidnapping victims would probably give the same answer before they got kidnapped. But, as it turns out, it’s not always up to you.
Stockholm Syndrome is a real psychological phenomenon. It’s defined as feelings of trust or affection felt in many cases of kidnapping or hostage-taking by a victim towards a captor. This weird psychological phenomenon got its name from a hostage situation that took place during an armed bank robbery in Stockholm, Sweden.

 

 

Stockholm Syndrome is a real psychological phenomenon. It’s defined as feelings of trust or affection felt in many cases of kidnapping or hostage-taking by a victim towards a captor. This weird psychological phenomenon got its name from a hostage situation that took place during an armed bank robbery in Stockholm, Sweden.

Here’s what happened:
In 1973 two criminals tried to rob a bank in Stockholm. When they realised that the police had them surrounded, they decided to keep 4 people as hostages. The negotiations with police lasted 6 days, and therefore the 4 hostages were kept in the bank with their criminal captors for 6 days. After the hostages were released, two of them took the side of the criminals. One of the girls even got engaged with one of the criminals. What’s even stranger is that this wasn’t the only case of such unusual and illogical behavior.
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A very similar situation happened in 1974. Terrorists of the Symbionese Liberation Army kidnapped Patty Hearst, a granddaughter of the American publishing magnate and William Randolph Hearst. Patty was only 19 at the time. She spent the first 57 days of her captivity in a wardrobe. She was blindfolded and her hands were tied behind her back. She was threatened with death, beaten and assaulted.
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At this point you’d think she should hate her captors. However, in a couple of months Patty Hearst learned to understand the criminals, their way of thinking and in the end joined SLA.
She was later arrested with her fellow criminals and put in jail.
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Another well know case of Stockholm Syndrome took place in 1998, when a 10 year Natascha Kampusch was captured by Wolfgang Priklopil. She was held in a soundproof cellar for 8 years before she escaped. When asked about her captor, Natasha spoke with empathy and understanding. She said that despite the fact that he held her hostage he spoiled her more than her parents ever did. He bought her books and even took her on a trip once. When Natascha was told that her captor committed suicide she started crying.
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In 2002, another girl was kidnapped from the bedroom of her home in Salt Lake City. Her name was Elizabeth Smart and she was only 14 at the time. She was held hostage for 9 months, and there’s a theory that she could’ve escaped sooner if it wasn’t for Stockholm Syndrome.
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The general consensus on Stockholm Syndrome is that it’s a defense reaction. First the victims try to behave well and be submissive in order to avoid being hurt and protect themselves and their life, later they start mistaking the lack of beatings and abuse for kindness and in the end they form a bond with their captor and identify with them. When victims start to identify with their aggressor, they stop seeing them as a threat and therefore feel safe.

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