This case has really knocked me for six. An Austrian man kept his daughter Elisabeth locked up in a cellar for twenty four years, had sex with her, fathered seven children, three of which he and his wife legally adopted (his wife claims she didn't know her own daughter was the mother), the other three kids lived with Elisabeth in the cellar and never saw daylight. The last child died at birth and the abuser threw it in an incinerator. It is just so horrendous it is impossible to get one's head around it.
Usually you try and forget that people like that exist and are free and are walking around. And sometimes it is so hard to look my older daughter in the face when she is scared about something she saw in a movie and tell her that nothing bad is going to happen to her, that I will stop bad people from ever getting to her. But this case completely broke my faith in humanity. And okay, no doubt this guy had bad things done to him as a child. Yes, it is an isolated incident. But these people are out there and there is nothing we can do about it but pray they get caught and put in jail.
The flip side of the story is ironically, that the human spirit is surprisingly resilient. It is reported that Elisabeth and two of her captive children who are now being treated in a psychiatric hospital, are said to be in surprisingly good condition, except for the need to adapt to daylight.
One official said: "As we were driving with one of the boys towards the hospital he told me he was very happy to be driven in a car. He had seen cars on TV and always wanted to have a ride in one.
"I could not detect any obvious mental or physical malfunctions in him or his sister."