Forensic psychologist Brian Russell appeared on The Early Show Monday to discuss the complicated issues facing the family.
"We have these three young ladies, Jaycee kidnapped when she was just 11 years old, her two daughters now 11 and 15 and were born into the situation and never known anything else. Everyone wants to picture them now living happily ever after with their real family, but it's not that simple, is it?" co-anchor Maggie Rodriguez asked.
"It's not. And there's a tremendous hope angle to the story, hope for even who has a missing loved one out there that they can be found alive, and hope for Jaycee and her kids. But we have to be realistic about what it is that we're hoping for," Russell said.
"Obviously we're not going to be able to go back and restore to them these years that they've lost. So the question is: what kind of quality of life can we help them to achieve going forward? And I do believe that it they all can find joy in this life and that we can restore some semblance of a normal life to them, but it's going to be a long hard road because we have trauma issues, we have all the reintegration issues that we're talking about. And we may even have some of these issues that people have talked about a lot on television the last few days about having these bonds that they've formed maybe with the Garridos," he added. "People talk about Stockholm syndrome."
"Jaycee's stepfather told me feels guilty because she bonded with him and the fact this when he was arrested she cried and the little girls now are angry that their father is in jail help how do you begin it to explain that, how do you begin to deal with that?" Rodriguez asked.
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"Well, fortunately for America and unfortunately for the people who need treatment in this case, it's really sort of unprecedented. So in order to give and you good victim specific prognosis and treatment plan, I'd have to see the victims and examine them and assess them, but let me tell you where to start. You start with letting them know that they're safe. It's really too soon for them to have fully wrapped their minds even around that yet. And then that they're loved unconditionally and that they don't have to feel guilty for anything that they did or didn't do while this was going on," Russell said.
"It's too early I think for people in the media to be diagnosing the Stockholm syndrome. That's possibly that she's developed an affinity for them and that the kids have, too, but what's more likely is that they just resign themselves to the fact that they were never going to get out of this thing and just tried to make the best of it, which is a different thing from liking the captor," he added.
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