Alice Miller, child abuse and mistreatment

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Question about a therapist
Saturday July 07, 2007

Dear Alice, A month has passed since I emailed and asked you about my situation. I continue to work with my new therapist who keeps good boundaries and I have learned a lot - and felt a lot - grieved a lot - and grown. She believes there will come a time (on my own timetable) when I will want/need to confront my former therapist-turned-friend. Not to hurt her in anyway, but in order to say what I need to say - the truth of how she damaged me - and then be able to move on. Do you think that's necessary or helpful?

AM: I agree with your therapist.

Dear Alice, One more question. Is it pretty much impossible for a therapist and a client to move their relationship into one of friendship and that friendship be healthy? Or is it basically destined to damage the client? Thanks.

AM: Ask your own feelings and don't let them be fooled by yourself. Don't you feel betrayed? The contract with a therapist says that the helplessness, the love and trust of the client should NEVER be exploited for the needs of the therapist. Otherwise the story of one's childhood abuse is repeated instead of being felt with rage and rejected in therapy. Abuse continues to be tolerated and seen as normal. It is common, indeed, but it is NOT normal. You still seem to protect your therapist from your anger as you probably protect your parents. When you start to protect YOURSELF by SEEING what has been done to you, you will no longer need my answers. YOU will become the expert.

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