Alice Miller, child abuse and mistreatment

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Thank you : )
Thursday March 06, 2008

Dear Ms. Miller,

My name is S. (pseudonym). I'm 25 years old.
I became familiar with your work a year ago, when I met my boyfriend (who you know by the name "N.", and of course knows about this letter).
As you know, my boyfriend is in the middle of a life-changing process, and so, with his help, support, and understanding, and your written work, I begun my own change not so long ago.

I was born into a violent house, which used to be my wicked mother's closed kingdom. In that house, my brothers, sisters and I suffered cruel, endless emotional and physical abuse on a regular basis.
I was sexually abused by my "babysitter", an old ugly man, who was our neighbor, for about 7 years since the age of two.
It's not hard to guess that with this way of life I suffered from psychological and physical symptoms since I can remember myself - one of them appeared close to the day I told my mother that I've been sexually abused. I was 9 years old by the time I had the courage to tell her that, but when I finely did tell her, she just shouted at me: "too bad he didn't kill you".
From this tragic and painful day on I never told anyone anything about what's going on with me and/or my life. The memory of years of rape was repressed (until I was 13). It was at that time a strange rash started to spread all over my arms and back. No cure was found to this rash. (At that time I didn't make a connection between those events).

My beloved boyfriend is the first human being that I trust enough to tell my horrible history. After a whole life of silence and repressed feelings I finally found a man with whom I managed to speak (something I almost didn’t do until the age of 14) long conversations about me and my life. He is the first person who knew how to react the way I needed. When he heard my story he told me: "that rash will disappear when you'll learn to get angry about all that's been done to you" - he explained it to me with his own story, about the migraines he suffered for a long time, until the day he learned to confront his past – the day they were gone.

A few days ago, half a year after I began changing my life, I sat in the kitchen with my boyfriend. Suddenly he looked at me differently and asked me: "have you noticed your arms?"- I didn’t. Not until that moment. I was amazed! The rash had almost completely disappeared. I was so used to that rash that I didn't notice how as I am changing the things that poisoned my life – my body too is changing.

It seems that the rash is gone so as to remind me that I am finally on the right way, a way of truth.

I know I still have a long way ahead of me, but now I know it is the right way, your way, my beloved boyfriend's way, and the way of all the people who truly live their lives.

I thank you for showing me that way.

Sincerely, S.

AM: We publish your extremely moving letter because it can encourage others to leave their loneliness and to dare talk about their suffering. But if you don't wish for it to be published write to us and we can delete your text. I am so glad that you made the experience how much healing it can bring you to share your terrible story with a good friend. The cruel and mean answer given to you by your own mother might have discouraged you from talking for your whole life if you had not met your friend. Until then the rush was the only language available for you. The way can be long, okay, but there is no doubt that you will succeed in healing because you already made the experience of speaking the truth and winning.

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