Horrific Story Of Woman Who Was Held Captive For 25 Years By Her Own Mother

By Editorial Staff in History On 19th June 2024

A French woman was trapped in her own home for 25 years after making a love match that her mother disproved of.

Blanche was born on March 1, 1849, in Poitiers, France, to a well-respected family. 

They lived in a big three-story house and were known for their important role in the town’s history. 

Blanche Monnier - Locked Up In A Room For 25 Years YouTube / Telltale
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When Blanche turned 27, she wanted to marry an older lawyer, but her mom called him "penniless" and didn’t approve. 

Blanche’s mom forbid her from seeing him, but Blanche continued to meet him secretly. 

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The people in the town began to talk about their relationship.

In March 1875, after another secret meeting with the lawyer, Blanche’s mom had enough.

Blanche Monnier was imprisoned by her mother Louise. Apic / Getty Images

Blanche suddenly disappeared, and everyone in the town wondered where she went. 

Her family said she was sent to a hospital for mental health issues. Sadly, the lawyer died without knowing what happened to Blanche. 

In reality, Blanche was locked up in her own house. In 1901, a letter was sent to the Paris Attorney General. 

It says: "Monsieur Attorney General: I have the honor to inform you of an exceptionally serious occurrence. 

"I speak of a spinster who is locked up in Madame Monnier's house, half-starved and living on a putrid litter for the past twenty-five years - in a word, in her own filth."

Blanche died a decade after being freed. Caras y Caretas

At first, the authorities didn’t believe it, but they decided to investigate. 

When they arrived at the Monnier house, Louise admitted it was true. 

She took them to the third floor where they found Blanche. 

She was very thin, lying naked on a rotten mattress. 

The room was filthy with "excrement, fragments of meat, vegetables, fish, and rotten bread." 

An officer said, "We also saw oyster shells and bugs running across Mademoiselle Monnier's bed," and the smell was so bad they couldn’t stay in the room for long.

Blanche was taken to the hospital, and Louise was arrested.

Nine / Blanche Monnier

Louise said Blanche had a mental breakdown and she tried to take care of her. 

Louise died 15 days after being arrested.

Marcel, Blanche’s brother, went to court and was convicted for keeping his sister locked up and torturing her. 

He claimed he was innocent but was sentenced to 15 months in jail.

Later, he was let go because the judges said he wasn’t mentally capable and there was no law that said he had to rescue her.

Blanche got better in the hospital and gained some weight. 

She had anorexia nervosa and schizophrenia. 

She spent the rest of her life in a care facility and died on October 13, 1913, at the age of 64. 

Her story was told in a book by André Gide called La Séquestrée de Poitiers. 

Gide, a Nobel Prize-winning author, kept most of the true story but changed the names of the characters.