How Elizabeth Smart Duped Her Abductor

Cynthia Dermody
Elizabeth Smart

Photo by George Frey/Getty

Teens rarely get enough credit for their brilliant and resourceful sides. We always focus on the problematic behavior and other bad stuff.

I discovered why Elizabeth Smart earns her last name in the October 19 issue of People. To avoid "bonding" with her kidnapper at the same time saving her own life from the accused pedophile rapist Brian David Mitchell, Smart kept a diary of her time in captivity.

The 14 year old at the time wrote one set of positive entries in English in case Mitchell read her diary. Another set she wrote in French, phrases like, "I hate it here. I hate them. I want to go home to my family." Her father said this helped to keep her independence and hope that she would one day be returned.

Smart, now 21, was the one who suggested to her kidnappers that they move from California back to her hometown of Salt Lake City Utah, where she figured she had a better chance of being recognized. And as we know, that's exactly what happened.

Tell me how your teen amazes you! What acts of resourcefulness, ingenuity, or maturity has he or she demonstrated lately?


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