What’s Trauma Bonding, is it linked to child abuse, complex PTSD and Stockholm syndrome?

Traumatic bonding

Traumatic bonding is shown when abused children cling tenaciously to the parents who hurt them, and victims of domestic violence repeatedly return to their abusive partner. (Herman, 1992) Perpetrators of sexual abuse may manipulate trauma bonds further by giving their victim the only sense of specialness, or being loved, that they have ever had. (Herman, 1992)

When a person is subjected to coercive control there are profound alterations in the victim’s identity. All the structures of the self−the image of the body, the internalized images of others, and the values and ideals that lend a sense of coherence and purpose−are invaded and systematically broken down. (Herman, 1992)

Coercive Control – Stockholm Syndrome

Favaro and colleagues (2000) found that PTSD and Stockholm syndrome both reflect the severity of the hostages’ experience, with Stockholm syndrome is predicted by the number of humiliating experiences and the level of deprivation experienced and PTSD being related to the number of violent episodes experienced by the victims. (Alexander, 2010) Stockholm syndrome does not always develop since it depends on specific preconditions. (Alexander, 2010) 

Child abuse survivor CW Seymore speaks on her trauma bond with her abusive father

I was just recently re-introduced to the “Coined” term The Stockholm Syndrome, for the undying loyalty and even compassion; I had toward my abuser, My Father. I had heard that term passed around quite often in the past and never really thought it applied to my life because I always associated it with the Concentration Camp Prisoners or Prisoners of war. I never really realized it is a Syndrome acquired by also being abused as a child; battered; an incest victim; in a cult or in a controlling or intimidating relationship. But after a conversation with a friend and a recent situation I was involved with, I have come to recognize that it is one of the main reasons I never talked about my abuse to friends or others in a position to help. I had this sick, undying loyalty to my father!

Read more… The Stockholm Syndrome and the Abused (shardsofglasscwseymore.blogspot.co.uk)

Breaking free


17 thoughts on “What’s Trauma Bonding, is it linked to child abuse, complex PTSD and Stockholm syndrome?

  1. One of my alters struggled with this, especially with our biological father. Through therapy she saw how he was not our friend but our enemy and now she’s on board with us getting healthy and strong. We also struggled with this concerning our ex-husband…he was a monster. But we are free now! Thank you so much for posting this. 🙂


  2. Very useful post I had that trauma bond with my father and clung to him for years. I loved him even though he hurt me. But he made me feel soooo special and loved, the total opposite to my mother who hated me and abused me too.


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  7. This is my first time speaking out,and I’mfighting tears back again today.My sister and I were abused by our stepfather and mother ,sexually,physically and mentally.For years I swallowed the memories and I can’t anymore.My stepfather has passed away years ago.Mom is still alive and has a close relationship with my sister.When I reported the abuse as a teen to myprobation officer,,he called the police.My sister gave a statement that the abuse was happening.When the police arrested my stepfather,my mom convinced my sister to recant her statement and say she made it up,,so she did.I was made to look like a liar.The time has come for me to do something about it,,my sister says I need to learn to forgive,,only then will I be set free.I forgave a long time ago,,,forgiveness does not bring justice.I’ll be posting things,and thoughts on face book,I’m looking for support from all the family members who knew and did nothing and there’s lots of them. jamesross44@hotmail.ca


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