Hannah Anderson, the 16-year-old San Diego County girl whose kidnapping sparked a six-day, multistate manhunt, has faced off with her critics on social media, telling them to "mind their own business" and "get a life."
In recent days, Hannah has posted messages on the "Prayers for Hannah Anderson" Facebook page, initially thanking supporters and saying the page "helped find me." She has since turned her attention to those who have criticized her behavior, including her social media activity in the days after her rescue.
Hannah defended her social media presence in an interview with NBC News that aired on the "Today" show Thursday morning.
"It just helps me grieve, like, post pictures to show how I'm feeling," Hannah said. "I'm a teenager. I'm gonna go on it."
On the Facebook page, in response to questions about her "strange" way of mourning, Hannah wrote, "How bout you hop off and mind your own business? I can say and do what I want and I feel bad that it bothers you so much."
Hannah told NBC that she was surprised by the negative reaction: "I didn't know people could be so cruel."
She said that the online messages she received were "a little overwhelming" but that "it also felt good to know that people prayed for me."
In the segments that aired Thursday, Hannah did not comment on the events leading to her abduction, the days she was missing or her rescue. Another excerpt is set to air Thursday night on "NBC Nightly News."
The teenager wiped away tears as she spoke of her 8-year-old brother Ethan, saying he "had a really big heart." Her mother, she said, was "strong-hearted and very tough" and "knew how to handle things."
Hannah said she got her nails done in honor of her mother and brother, with pink and blue on her fingers and their names written across her toes. She said her father's trip to an Idaho hospital where she was initially taken "was helpful, and it got us closer."
She thanked those involved in her rescue -- authorities, her father and those behind the Amber Alert system -- and said if it weren't for the horseback riders who spotted her in the Idaho back country and alerted police, "I probably wouldn't be here right now."
Later, Hannah said she first thought of herself as a victim, but now "I consider myself a survivor instead."
Twitter: @katematherCopyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times