The Stockholm syndrome is used to indicate those cases in which the victim of a kidnapping or abduction begins to show an affectionate relationship with the criminal who kidnaps her; There have been cases in which the victims refuse to be released and prefer to stay with their captors and even help them to commit their crimes.
It has that name due to an incident that occurred in Stockholm , Sweden in 1973 where a bank robbery was perpetrated and hostages were taken for six days after which one of the women who was kidnapped developed a link with her captors reaching the point to show affection to one of them at the time of liberation.
- As the main characteristic of this syndrome, we can consider the affectionate relationship that can be generated between the hostage and his captor or kidnapper. Many studies have determined that, due to the lack of protection for itself, the brain generates a state of affection in search of the protection it needs, arising from the benevolence of its captors.
- The second main characteristic is the aversion to the authorities or the law that may generate or cause any harm to the person who perpetrated the act.
Examples of Stockholm Syndrome
- Natascha Kampush who in 1998 in Austria was kidnapped at just 8 years old by 44-year-old Wolfgang Priklopil, she was only 10 years old when she was kidnapped.
- In 2004, some humanitarian workers named Simona Tortea and Simona Pari were kidnapped by rebels in Iraq, after their liberation both claimed that their captors fed them well, being they vegetarians, they were also kind to them, respected the health of one of them and then at one time they both sent them a box of sweets as a farewell.
- In Venezuela, the pilot Richard Boulton was kidnapped, two years later he was released when his family paid $ 430,000, the pilot clarified that he was treated very well and even refused to allow anyone to misrepresent his captors after the incident.
- Colleen Stan : This case shows the confinement that a man carried out on his wife, leaving her in a box for 22 hours a day. She remained locked up for 7 years under threat.
- Patricia Hearst: it is an heir to the empire of communication in America, she was kidnapped by the symbiotic liberation army. After paying a large sum for her ransom, the young woman did not return and admitted that she did so on her own, joining the army later.
- Elizabeth Smart: girl kidnapped at the age of 14. Upon being rescued, she showed concern for her abductor.
- Kristin Enmark: kidnapped woman and later marries the kidnapper and expresses her desire to travel the world with him.
- It can occur in the case of children abused by adults or relatives and subsequently generate affection for them.
- Case of couples where one of them physically abuses the other and does not say anything, generating greater affection despite the situation.
- Case of mothers who are beaten or attacked by their children.
It is important to note that these behaviors can be considered strange or atypical within the entire situation that develops and according to many experts in psychology this occurs because the human being emotionally responds to situations in which he is vulnerable. Many point out that it is a strategy that occurs unconsciously and serves as a means of survival since, through the bond that the hostages and captors have, the latter do not see the need to physically attack their victims.
There are some differences of opinion among many experts in the field. However, they also agree on points and that are equally parallel between victims and kidnappers , both parties have negative points of view before the authorities. The abductees develop favorable emotions towards their captors and in the same way the captors begin to show positive emotions and feelings towards their victims.