Thursday, July 18, 2013

The Stockholm Syndrome: Remedy for Relationship Abuse?

        It is very unusual for a person to have positive feelings towards someone who hurts him or her. Especially people involved in  an abusive relationship. Psychologists have different explanations about relationship abuse and one of them leads to the Stockholm Syndrome. But how would the said  syndrome apply to this?

        According to an article entitled "Stockholm Syndrome" by Alice Sebold, Stockholm Syndrome is described as a victim's emotional "bonding" with their abuser and was given it's name following a hostage situation in Stockholm, Sweden when, following the end of a bank robbery, the hostages identified with and supported their captors.

       The article also stated that there are four present situations or conditions that serve as a foundation for the development of Stockholm Syndrome:

  1. Perceived or real threat to to one's physical or psychological survival and belief that the abuser will carry out the threat.
  2. Presence of small kindness from the abuser to the victim.
  3. Victim's isolation from other perspectives.
  4. Perceived or real inability to escape the situation.

       For more details, click on the link

       From the same article, Dr. Joseph Carver stated:

"It is important to remember that Stockholm Syndrome develops subconsciously and on an involuntary basis. The strategy for survival instinct that  develops as an attempt to survive the threatening and controlling environment"

   To sum it all up, Stockholm Syndrome greatly affects an abusive relationship to a point that it causes the victim to not leave the abuser. For me, it's not all that bad. Stockholm Syndrome could be used as a strategy (emotional bond) by the victim in order  for the abuser to stop the hurting. However, if the syndrome persists even if the abuser continues the hurting, there would be a really bad effect on the victim's part: still clinging to the good side of the abuser though in reality, the hurting does not stop.

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