Stockholm Syndrome is a plausible reason women stay in abusive relationships. It is a condition often found with kidnap victims, hostages or anyone who has been in a “life and death” situation for an extended period of time.
The victim becomes sympathetic to the abuser’s way of thinking and will even fight being rescued because of their strong attachment to the abuser.
Four elements need to be present in order for Stockholm Syndrome to develop.
– The presence of a perceived threat to one’s physical or psychological survival and the belief that the abuser would carry out the threat.
– The presence of a perceived small kindness from the abuser to the victim
– Isolation from perspectives other than those of the abuser
– The perceived inability to escape the situation.
All of these elements were present in JC and my relationship for a large part of the time we were together.
– Somehow we always ended up living out in the country away from public transit etc.
– My vehicles were always broken down or stolen so I had no means of leaving easily.
– My parents basically disowned me when I was with JC. Isolation of the victim is a very important component, the victim has no rational feedback and after time is basically brainwashed by the abuser. The victim is reliant on the abuser for their survival and any kindness from the abuser is exaggerated in the victims mind. Plus without a support system the victim feels they have no where to go or way to leave.
In order to help the victim of abuse it is very important family and friends understand this condition. To read more about the syndrome itself and how you can help the victim please go to my link of the subject.