Amanda Lindhout, the freelance Canadian journalist held captive in Somalia for 15 months, has spoken out about how she came to forgive the men who violently abused her – and even spoke to one of them on Facebook.
The comments come as the 33-year-old’s best-selling memoir, The House In The Sky, was picked up by a major Hollywood studio to be adapted as a film starring Academy Award nominee Rooney Mara.
Lindhout and an Australian photographer, Nigel Brennan, were kidnapped by Islamic fundamentalists outside Mogadishu in August 2008.
They were working on a story at the time and help hostage for 460 days.
Lindhout said she concept of the ‘house in the sky’ is the place in her mind she turned to in order to survive the torment.
‘It was my memory and my imagination,’ she told Bangor Daily News.
‘They helped me survive.’
Not only has Lindhout survived, she says she has come to terms with the men who subjected her to endless sexual abuse.
‘The reality of my experience was very violent,’ she said.
‘It was difficult to get through a day, and I didn’t know when, or if, it would end.
‘It was almost constant abuse.’
During the very darkest time, Lindhout had what she calls a ‘moment of awakening’.
‘Abdujllah was abusing me, he was hurting me, and I was protecting myself and had an almost out-of-body experience,’ she said.