Elizabeth Smart Opens up About Her Painful Memories

Elizabeth Smart is sharing her incredible story of survival again, 14 years after she was rescued from her captors. She still deals with traumatic memories from those nine months she was away from her family.

"I have been so blessed," she told Access Hollywood on Monday while promoting her new documentary and Lifetime movie. "I have been so lucky. I have not struggled with PTSD. I mean there are moments where I'll see something or maybe I'll smell something and it'll take me back."

Smart gave one example, recalling a time when she saw a Russian art book on her grandmother's table.

"I was flipping through it looking at it and there's a picture of Rasputin in there, and I saw a picture of him and I was like, 'Oh my gosh. That looks just like Brian Mitchell,' " Smart said, referring to one of her captors.

The 30-year-old Smart is happily married to Matthew Gilmour and is a mother to two young children in Park City, Utah. She told Access Hollywood that she plans on telling her children about her experiences when they are older.

"I'm certainly not going to hide it from them," she said. "Already, I struggle with not wanting to be so overprotective, but protect them enough. Finding that balance, that's hard."

Smart said she always tells her 2-year-old daughter Chloe that no one has the right to hurt you or make you afraid. "And if anyone ever should, you need to tell me," she said.

A&E is airing the two-hour documentary Elizabeth Smart: Autobiography tonight at 9 p.m. ET. Lifetime will air I Am Elizabeth Smart Saturday at 8 p.m. ET. The film stars Alana Boden as Smart, who also narrates the film herself.


In June 2002, when Smart was 14 years old, she was abducted by Brian David Mitchell and Wanda Ileen Barzee. Police found her nine months later, in March 2003. Both Barzee and Mitchell are in prison, with Barzee getting two life sentences in federal prison in 2011.

Photo: Access Hollywood/YouTube