This sort of “Stockholm Syndrome” is certainly not limited to 8-year captives. Instead, clinicians see it every day when treating abuse victims. When a person’s one shot at belonging (whether actual or perceived, it makes no difference) is to identify with an abusive family or spouse (or captor as the case may be), that is exactly what people tend to do. People get used to abuse, rationalize it away until it seems normal to them … something expected, even deserved. For this reason, it often doesn’t even occur to many people that what they’ve experienced was abuse. Or, if there is recognition that abuse has occurred, there is an urge to minimize the extent to which the abuse is recognized. Not a pretty picture of how people’s psychological insides work, but it does seem to be the case that this is how identity tends to work.