SHADMIA'S WORLD

Just Another Guy with Opinions

The Wounds of Elisabeth Fritzl and Family

Posted by shadmia on June 2, 2008

Elisabeth Fritzl’s mental, physical and emotional wounds will require a network of case managers. So says Jeff Dolgan, senior psychologist at Denver Children’s Hospital, adding that he had never heard of a case this horrific.

“It’s beyond creepy,” he said. “This takes the cake. Trauma is like throwing a big rock into a pond. The waves go out and we are all sadly traumatized. She will need a system of care, not just one person but an adult psychiatrist who will coordinate the rehabilitation. Her world has been this basement. It’s like our waking up 500 years from now. This is all she’s known.”

Elisabeth Fritzl was incarcerated in a basement cellar for 24 years by her own father. She was repeatedly raped by him and bore him 7 children, one of which died shortly after birth and was incinerated in a furnace to get rid of the body. Elisabeth and her children were freed from their prison after a police investigation, prompted by the hospitalization of her eldest daughter Kirsten, 19, discovered their dungeon. Read the entire story here.

Physical Exam

After living for so long in the cramped, low-ceiling dungeon, called home for 24 years, Elisabeth and her kids have developed some serious physical problems. In her first medical exam after she was found, Austrian doctors said Elisabeth’s teeth were horrifically decayed. She and her three children have a myriad of medical problems, including vitamin D deficiency, anemia and bad posture.

Vitamin D deficiency can cause rickets, a disease of malnutrition caused by lack of sun exposure that is rarely seen today. Her bones are weakened and deformed. Because of the cramped space, low ceilings and little opportunity to exercise, Elisabeth may also have problems with movement. She looks haggard, hunched over, lined and gray. The 42 year-old looks more like the sister of her 67-year-old mother than her daughter. Because of the scarce oxygen supply in the cramped quarters, Elisabeth and her kids had to spend long spells sitting or lying down. Kerstin, her 19-year-old daughter, is in an induced coma after collapsing. She is still in a critical condition and fighting for her life.

According to Dr. Stuart Goldman, a psychiatrist at Harvard University’s Children’s Hospital in Boston, “This case is so unique, we can only look for approximations.”

“If you don’t use muscles and stretch them out, your motion is limited,” said Goldman. Muscles can be retrained, but senses like vision and hearing could be permanently impaired. He continued “All our senses are trophic. You have to use nerves for nerves to develop. If you patch an eye, you eventually go blind, even if the eye is mechanically normal.”

Mental and Emotional Problems

Aside from the physical challenges facing the family, also of concern is the mental and emotional damage their incarceration may have caused. Although the Austrian doctors are worried about the three children, Elisabeth may have suffered the worst.

“She was older when it started happening, but at the same time, she had years and years of deprivation and limited stimulus,” said Jay Reeve, associate professor of psychology at Florida State University and executive vice president of the Apalache Center for Mental Health. “It’s exactly as if she was held in captivity in jail……She had some period of her life when, presumably, she was able to interact with others and be in school and have some social interchange,” said Reeve. “But the rape and sexual abuse that she experienced was a pretty stark betrayal of trust.”

Initially, her father Josef Fritzl, reportedly handcuffed Elisabeth to a metal pole and kept her in total darkness, returning only to bring her food or to rape her. She told police she was kept in a single room for the first nine years of her captivity where their children had to watch as her father repeatedly raped her. Often she had to decide whether to have sex or starve. She told officers how she quaked with fear every time she heard the door click as her dad came down for his vile sex sessions. He beat her if she struggled, so she soon stopped putting up a fight.

Police chief Franz Polzer said: “The man is evil beyond words. The misery he has inflicted on his family is unimaginable. It will take (Elisabeth and) the children years to recover.”

With the complexity of her trauma, Elisabeth most likely has shut down emotionally as a way to cope with the pain and may need myriad therapies and time “to handle her memories and make sense of how why this happened,” said Reeve.

Since being rescued, the family has been living in an isolated room in a psychiatric unit near their home. Doctors have placed a cargo container outside so that Josef Fritzl’s captives can retreat there if they feel too traumatized by the daylight and the open space.

“She needs reassurance that she has not lost everything,” said psychologist Dolgan.

On the video-sharing website Youtube there is a 5 part documentary on the discovery of the “House of Horrors” that Elisabeth and her children lived in. It is full of details about the experiences that she endured. Below is the first part of this documentary entitled The Josef Fritzl Story. Click here to see the entire series.

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7 Responses to “The Wounds of Elisabeth Fritzl and Family”

  1. kim wing said

    I hope life now bring enormous daily pleasure to Elizabeth and her kids. If I was her mom Rosemarie, I don’t know how i could go on frankly.

  2. iloveskyblue said

    i look up to Elizabeth fritzl. thanks to this site.. ic knew more of her.

  3. Reader said

    Here is a comment that I would like to make
    about Josef Fritzl and his wife Rosemarie …

    Clearly that “person” (and one has to stretch the
    definition of the word “person” in order to apply
    it to that creature) known to the world as Josef
    Fritzl was / is the DEVIL-INCARNATE —- AND
    he should burn in h*ll for all of eternity for his evil.

    In addition, it also needs to be stated that no person
    on earth should allow themselves be fooled for
    even one moment by the lies of “I didn’t know”
    that are currently being claimed by that lying
    and equally evil wife of this evil DEVIL!!!

    That vile, evil, perverted, disgusting, devil
    b**tch of a wife of that MONSTER KNEW!!

    SHE KNEW!!! SHE KNEW!!! SHE KNEW!!!

    She KNEW the whole time (or at least had
    literally no excuse whatsoever to have not
    at least ‘suspected’ something was amiss!!!)

    She is a LIAR and she must think the entire world is
    as perverted as both she and her husband are and
    that by coming up with that ridiculous and flimsy
    excuse that she can then convince the rest of
    the world to then respond to her own complicity
    the same way she chose to respond to that of
    her husband’s evil — by ‘turning a blind eye’.

    BOTH of them are utter DEVILS and one
    cannot help but to hope that they both burn
    in h*ll for all of eternity for their evil acts!!!!

    She expects anyone on this planet who has even
    half-a-brain-stem to believe for even one fraction
    of a moment that she didn’t know anything at all?!?!

    Give me a break!!!

    For crying out loud–unless this woman is Helen
    Keller –she has NO EXCUSE at all to not have
    known (or at least ’suspected’) something strange
    and conspiratorial was going on regarding her
    daughter’s whereabouts and situation and that the
    husband’s stories were just far too incredulous
    and absolutely made no sense in the least bit!!!

    After all — think about it — daughter runs away as a
    very young teen; daughter mysteriously disappears
    at the age of 18 (an age when she can both make
    her own decisions and choose to get away from
    her father and even bring charges against him); the
    (convicted-rapist/arsonist) father gets a letter from
    daughter 1 month after her disappearance which
    ridiculously claims she has joined a cult and does
    not want to have any contact with the family – yet
    amazingly then later chooses (for 3 years in a row)
    to simply leave 3 of her newborn babies on the
    doorstep of very home that she tried to run away
    from at least 2 X’s before and is “allegedly thought”
    to have finally left in order to join some sort of
    “phantom” cult (a “cult” which, unlike every other
    cult, just somehow, seemingly has no desire to try
    to indoctrinate the youth from birth, but rather it
    simply allows it’s members to select a home –one
    which in fact, is both not a part of the cult AND is
    the very home from which the member ran in order
    to join the cult —to raise their babies and kids of
    the cult members) –ALL THE WHILE – the father
    forbids ANYONE to ever for ANY REASON dare to
    go ANYWHERE NEAR the mysterious basement
    (which he always keeps locked, disappears to for
    hours and days on end; has ‘unseen’ bathroom
    equipment installed; and has a cement-barricaded
    door installed which both has a security-code and
    which was so complicated it needed inspection
    by local government authorities in order to install).

    Just 2 years before the “discovery” of what this
    monster (and his devil wife via her complicity of
    silence) did to their poor child – another young girl,
    and former kidnap victim, was also found in Austria.

    It was discovered that the other young kidnap /
    rape victim had disappeared 8 years earlier and
    had been held in a basement / dungeon where
    she had been repeatedly raped the entire time
    by the individual who had also kidnapped her.

    Now —- even if the public was expected to
    simply throw all common sense to the wind
    and accept this monster’s devil-wife’s excuse
    that she “didn’t know”, say, in the beginning …
    it still stands to reason that after hearing about
    the case of the other young girl 2 years earlier
    —– this creep’s equally creepy wife would
    have said something to herself like, say …

    ”””Hmmm … a young girl who disappeared 8 years
    ago, out of no where, has been discovered
    to have been held in a basement the entire
    time and while there she was repeatedly
    raped by the person who trapped her there.

    Hmmm … my daughter, who repeatedly tried
    to run away from my convicted-rapist husband
    as a child has also mysteriously disappeared
    – and – my convicted-rapist husband is
    always coming across both ‘letters’ and
    ‘grandchildren’ that were allegedly left
    by my daughter (who has vanished
    without a trace) — and – meanwhile
    my convicted-rapist husband also
    has a mysterious basement that he
    keeps under lock and key and never
    allows anyone to come near — ever.

    Hmmm … now I cannot help but to wonder
    if that convicted-rapist husband I married
    just may have had something to do with
    the disappearance of our daughter – and
    — the appearance of all these grandkids
    and letters – and I also can’t help but to
    wonder if that mystery-basement room
    of his would, in some way / in any way,
    be connected somehow to our child’s
    disappearance and / or the mysterious
    appearance of all of these grandchildren.”””

    Yes – one would think that – even if this woman
    could have claimed ‘ignorance’ earlier – (a lie
    which, again, no one with any common sense
    should ever consider buying into) – once the
    discovery was made of a similar situation 2
    years earlier – she then had NO excuse to not
    have at least been suspicious of something
    about her convicted-rapist husband and his
    ever-so-mysterious hidden basement room.

    That vicious devil simply did not care at all about
    her own daughter – or — she simply cared more
    about her own creature-comforts and keeping up
    with her middle-class appearances than she did
    about the torture being done to her own child.

    THAT POOR GIRL’S VILE, DISGUSTING
    PERVERTED LYING B*TCH OF A MOTHER
    KNEW FULL WELL WHAT WAS GOING ON
    — SHE KNEW– SHE KNEW– SHE KNEW!!!

    THAT WIFE IS A B*TCH, A DEVIL AND A
    VILE PERVERT AND ONE CANNOT HELP
    BUT TO TRULY HOPE THAT— SINCE SHE
    OBVIOUSLY FELT SOME STRANGE NEED
    TO BE SO VERY LOYAL TO THAT DEVIL,
    OF A PERVERTED CONVICTED-RAPIST
    AND ARSONIST FREAK OF A HUSBAND
    OF HERS AND TO CHOOSE TO STAND BY
    HIS SIDE FOR A QUARTER OF A CENTURY
    ALL THE WHILE THAT HE IMPRISONED
    AND ALSO SEXUALLY AND PHYSICALLY
    AND MENTALLY TORTURED THEIR
    CHILD — SHE WILL REMAINS BY
    HIS SIDE AS THEY BOTH BURN
    IN H*LL FOR ALL OF ETERNITY!!

    She is clearly as much of a
    pervert and devil as is he!!

    Would anyone even be remotely surprised
    if further investigation later revealed that
    ‘Rosemarie Fritzl’ (who is actually trying to
    get the world to see her as a co-victim of
    her daughter’s horrific nightmare of a life)
    was actually just another ‘Rosemary West’
    (a woman whose husband also originally –
    and falsely – claimed that she had nothing
    to do with his unbelievably evil sex crimes)?

    What kind of a woman, after all, chooses to marry
    (or remained married to) a man who had already
    committed and also been convicted of previously
    raping another woman and has shown absolutely
    no remorse about any of it whatsoever in the least.

    SHE KNEW!!! SHE KNEW!!! SHE KNEW!!!

  4. Kanika said

    Her mother defunetly knew. Too selfish and heartless to do anything. She should rot in jail too.

  5. lisa said

    ignorance is bliss. she probably wondered what was going on down there, and probably thought he was up to something from time to time, but for the sake of peace, she didn’t question him because she knew his temper. because although she surely knew he was keeping a secret, as a mother and wife she never dreamed what the secret might be.

  6. top 2pm videos…

    […]The Wounds of Elisabeth Fritzl and Family « SHADMIA'S WORLD[…]…

  7. your sister said

    I’m shamed to be human

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