“And it came to pass that Amulon did plead with the Lamanites; and he also sent forth their wives, who were the daughters of the Lamanites, to plead with their brethren, that they should not destroy their husbands.”
A strange phenomenon known as the “Stockholm Syndrome,” occurs to about one in four hostages. It’s the paradoxical situation where hostages portray positive feelings to their captors. These symptoms of the Stockholm Syndrome often result when a variety of factors are met.
Why people get the Stockholm Syndrome
Stockholm Syndrome: Contributing factor #1
The hostage feels the captor is showing mercy in sparing their life.
Stockholm Syndrome: Contributing factor #2
The hostage is isolated from outside opinions and therefore can only see the captor’s view of the situation.
Stockholm Syndrome: Contributing factor #3
The captor threatens to kill the hostage, thus the hostage feels it safer to agree with the captor, than to face death.
Stockholm Syndrome: Contributing factor #4
The hostage perceives kindness from the captor (even if only in the lack of abuse)
When these factors are met a hostage is at risk to develop the Stockholm Syndrome. With time, the hostage and abuctor develop a dependent relationship. In this situation, the captive is deprived of basic needs and has to depend on their abductor to survive. Some abuctors think of themselves as a ‘mother’ protecting their ‘child’ from the dangerous, outside world.
Here are some Californian examples of the Stockholm Syndrome.
Stockholm Syndrome examples
Jaycee Lee Dugard
In 1991, Jaycee Lee Dugard, 11, was kidnapped on her way to the bus stop in South Lake Tahoe. Eighteen years later, she and her two children (fathered by her abductor) were discovered by a parole officer. Jaycee lied about her identity and said her abductor was a “great person,” and “good with her kids.” Jaycee’s case exemplifies the Stockholm Syndrome.
In 1974, Patty Hearst, 19, was kidnapped from her apartment by the Symbionese Liberation Army (SLA). Two months later, Patty declared she had joined the SLA. A few days later, she was caught robbing a bank in San Francisco. Patty Hearst is one of the most famous examples of the Stockholm Syndrome.
“I mean, they call it Stockholm Syndrome and post traumatic stress disorder. And, you know, I had no free will. I had virtually no free will until I was separated from them for about two weeks.”
Personal Notes: I feel bad for those who have had the Stockholm Syndrome. While I never have experienced the Stockholm Syndrome, I once had a scary experience. I was seven and had repeated nightmares about being kidnapped. In the nightmares, I was in my neighborhood and tried to run from kidnappers. I’d awake screaming and crying. Luckily my parents helped me calm down…
…then, one day as I walked home from school, an un-muffled car pulled up next to me. Two men (20-30yrs) asked me if I knew someone (an Asian name). I replied “no.” They asked me again- I said, “No!” They continued to ask me and tell me to come closer to the car. All-the-sudden I recalled the nightmares and ran for my friends. The car sped away down the street. I still remember the red-purple car. Since that experience I can’t remember having nightmares about being kidnapped.
Greater than any logical argument of the existence of God is the revelation of the Holy Ghost to the minds and hearts of men. Also, all truth is compatible…if ever a scientific and a religious truth appear to contradict, there is usually an error in the interpretation of the scientific or religious truths. God lives! Smile!