Jaycee Dugard Interview Sparks Powerful Reaction From Abuse Survivors, Families of Missing Children

PHOTO: Diane Sawyer talks with kidnap victim Jaycee Dugard in an exclusive interview.PlayABC News
WATCH Jaycee Dugard: Kidnapper's Neighbors Speak

Watching Jaycee Dugard describe overcoming the scars from her 18 year abduction gave Janice Norwood hope that her daughter, missing for 22 years, is still alive and that she will see her again.

"Seeing Jaycee Dugard and her mother, I just...that would be so awesome and I just got to believe it's going to happen someday," Norwood said.

Norwood, 62, was one of nearly 15 million people who tuned in to Diane Sawyer's exclusive interview with Dugard, the California woman abducted at 11 and held captive in a backyard compound for nearly two decades. Dugard and the two daughters she gave birth to in that backyard prison were rescued in 2009.

Watch Diane Sawyer's Interview with Jaycee Dugard Again This Saturday on ABC News

The 31-year-old Dugard gave a rare glimpse into life of an abducted person and the way a predator operates. For Norwood, whose daughter Kimberly disappeared in 1989 at age 12, watching Dugard gaver her a window into how her daughter might be living if she's alive.

"I have wondered so many times like what she's been put through. ... I have thought of Kim being drugged up, of being tied up, locked up. ... I try not to think about that," Norwood said.

Norwood also said she identified with the bond between Dugard and her mother. When Dugard described her constant longing for her mother, Norwood worried about her own daughter.

"I don't want her to ever think that we've forgotten about her," Norwood said.

Norwood's daughter, Kim, disappeared walking home from a friend's house in their Hallsville, Texas, neighborhood. Norwood still looks down her driveway when she's watering the grass or plants hoping her daughter will appear. She said she gathered strength from watching Dugard's mother, Terry Probyn. Probyn described working tirelessly to find Dugard and said she always had a gut feeling her daughter was still alive.

"There are times that I think I can't take any more, but I'm still here and I'm still taking ... it does really give us hope," Norwood said. "There's so many people that don't believe they're alive because it's been so long. I just keep telling them that time doesn't kill."

Norwood was one of hundreds who flocked to Facebook to thank Dugard for her bravery. As soon as the interview aired, viewers tweeted and posted comments about the impact of Dugard's story on them.

One person commented, "the next time someone tells me they can't, I will say three words, 'Jaycee Lee Dugard.'"

A woman posted on Sawyer's Facebook page that Dugard is a "universal lift for the human spirit."

One man wrote that he "viewed the show from two angles ... one as a child that remembered hearing about her disappearance ... and now, as a father who would do absolutely anything for his children. Jaycee is an extremely strong, courageous, intelligent and beautiful woman. ... I'm completely amazed by her and her story."

Dugard recounted the abuse and manipulation she suffered at the hands of her abductors, Phillip and Nancy Garrido. She also emphasized how she's worked hard to overcome the horror she suffered.

Dugard gave the interview and released her memoir, "A Stolen Life," because she doesn't want to keep any more secrets.

"Why not look at it? You know, stare it down until it can't scare you anymore," Dugard told Sawyer.

That confidence and bravery resonated with several abuse survivors.

Jaycee Dugard Inspired Other Abuse Survivors

A teenager commented, "I suffered molestation for eight years from my biological father before I told my mom. It's been four years since I've told and I still have not talked about it to my therapist. Hopefully, this will give me courage to overcome my fear of telling her. Thank you."

Another sexual abuse survivor wrote, "It's so easy to 'give in' to the pain and horror of it and let what happened become you. She [Jaycee Dugard] has shown me in so many ways, that now at 51, I have no excuse for not moving on and and helping whoever I can. Thank you, Jaycee, for being who you are."

Beth Hughes, 53, said that she was glued to the television when Dugard recounted her abuse. Memories of the molestation she suffered as a child came flooding back.

"Wow, here's a girl 18 years held captive and she's sharing her story and it just made me think ... if more people, not just Jaycee talk about their journey and their recovery from the pain of it, I think a lot more people will be healthy mentally."

Dugard described shutting off a "switch" to survive in the oppressive environment of her captors.

"You just do what you have to do to survive," she told Sawyer. Dugard said that she doesn't feel a rage building inside of her towards the Garrido couple. Instead, she refuses to let them have any more of her.

Dugard's desire to build a future resonates with Hughes.

"You can't get the time back, you can only go forward...that clicked when I saw Jaycee," Hughes said. "I feel like I needed to share...to help even one person whose struggling with things that happened to them in childhood and it's affecting them in adulthood."