Alice Miller, child abuse and mistreatment

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Super Nanny, is she good or is she the best we can get?
Saturday June 28, 2008

Hi, Alice Miller,
I read your books and am familiar with your ideas.
I wonder what do you think about these tv shows about raising kids, especifically the one called "Super Nanny" with "the nanny" Jo Frost. Whenever I see this show I keep asking to my self, is it good or not? is it the dark pedagogie or not? One thing I think thats good is the fact that she never, never ever encourage physical punishment, in fact, several times I saw she saying to the parent: be on his/her level when you talk to your kid, so you dont scare him, talk with a calm voice, look in the eyes, etc. But, there are times when I think I just saw glimpses of manipulation and therefore the dark pedagogie, when for example, the time she said "what an audacity" or "how he dares it!" something like that on a kid who didn't let her mother sleeps until he sleeps. I also heard she saying that kids have to know their places, like she was saying that kids are hierarchically inferior to their parents, inferior as humans. That was very confusing for me, a lady that seems so nice and never encourages beating, suddenly shows her poisonous idea and I really felt like I was the kid, like I understood what is like to be a second class human at what was supposes to be my own house. Sometimes I think she is half the way. In a brutal world like ours, she seems like an angel, but, once you are no longer blind you know that she seems that way becouse the average is really scary.

AM: I agree with your observation. Can it be that these Nannies learn some good things in their schools about how you have to talk to the child etc, but when they work with families they can't avoid that the old patterns of their own upbringing and the way how they were treated by their own parents hinder them to be on the child's side? The same can happen to therapists, even if they had the best training.

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