Alice Miller, child abuse and mistreatment

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Early onset Alzheimers and poisonous pedagogy
Saturday January 27, 2007

Dear Alice,
I have just read 'The Body Never Lies' and discovered many insights that go a long way to explain why I isolate myself, am beset by anxieties and basically loathe myself. My question though is about one of my siblings, a 55 year old woman who was diagnosed with Alzheimer's Disease 1 year ago. This particular sister had 'special treatment' from my parents, I believe because she was very unsettled as an infant. She became my parents' scapegoat and remained so throughout childhood and into adult life. She was blamed for many things including my father's plunge into alcoholism. My mother often and openly referred to her as a horrible child 'who could never be satisfied' and repeated ad nauseam of how both parents would fill soda bottles with infant formula 'just to shut her up'. Alzheimer's has never presented, as far as is known, in any other family member. I was wondering if you believe that it is possible that this awful disease could result from cruel parenting?
Thank you for your wonderful book. I shall be seeking out your other works.
Kind Regards, C. F., Australia

AM: I don't have any doubt that Alzheimer is a flight from flashbacks of a painful childhood that come more frequently for older people because their resistance against remembering the truth is weakened by the advanced age. It is very helpful that you want to understand more.

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