CALIFORNIA PSYCHOTHERAPEUTIC RESOURCES, INC.
PATRICIA MCTAGUE-LOFT, MS, LMFT, FAPA, SAP
Schedule An Appointment
With A Licensed Marriage And Family Therapist
Posted on: June 7, 2021
Marriage Counseling Insights brought to you by California Psychotherapeutic Resources, Inc.
In a recent blog post, we wrote about a particular problem that couples may face to varying degrees. It’s a pattern of behavior known as a “trauma bond.” In this kind of a relationship, a bond develops out of a repeated cycle of abuse, devaluation, and positive reinforcement. This cycle can be especially insidious because a person often wants to make excuses for their partner or immediately forgive the abuse, especially if they apologize or alternate the abuse with kindness.
There is a related behavioral phenomenon known as Stockholm syndrome. Writing for the website Good Therapy, Sharie Stines, PsyD says, “Stockholm syndrome is a psychological condition that occurs when a victim of abuse identifies and attaches, or bonds, positively with their abuser. This syndrome was originally observed when hostages who were kidnapped not only bonded with their kidnappers, but also fell in love with them.”
Both trauma bonds and Stockholm syndrome speak to the complexity of human psychology. To understand this related behavior, says Stines, “Professionals have expanded the definition of Stockholm syndrome to include any relationship in which victims of abuse develop a strong, loyal attachment to the perpetrators of abuse.”
How do you recognize the signs of Stockholm syndrome? Is there a way to differentiate it from more typical rough patches in a relationship? According to Stines, look for the following:
For tips on helping people who may have Stockholm syndrome, see the full Good Therapy article here.
Posted in: Marriage Counseling
Disclaimer: The screening tests and videos that are linked on this web site are not designed to provide diagnoses for the various clinical issues. They are intended solely for the purpose of identifying the symptoms of the issues and to help you make a more informed decision about seeking help. An accurate diagnosis for these clinical issues and other psychiatric disorders can only be made by a physician or qualified mental health professional after a complete evaluation. If you have scores that indicate that you meet criteria for these issues or think that you may be at risk, please contact a mental health professional or your physician.