Alice Miller, child abuse and mistreatment

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Spanking in Australia
Friday October 16, 2009


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Dear Alice Miller,

I have been a counsellor/psychotherapist for ten years, and believe I am the kind of therapist you would approve of. Yesterday in a session I thought of you as a young girl - 22 - was telling me of the beltings she received from her mother, primarily, and the depression she now experiences. When I got her to "speak" to her mother, the wounding, the hurt and rejection, poured out of her.

In the last two days in Australia the issue of smacking children has hit the headlines in the Herald Sun newspaper. Today people were asked to vote for or against smacking - 90% voted in favour!! The Sun would consist mainly of lesser educated readers, but I was shocked at the results. There were all the usual comments from those who condone smacking: "It never did me any harm", "our children have become successful ......". If you are interested, I could send you the article.

I have been writing a book for the past 5 years, and it is thanks to your writing that I have found the courage to write the tough, unpopular truth about parenting. While no one presents for counselling wanting to explore their childhood hurt, it is always buried childhood pain that underpins a client's difficulties.

With thanks for being such an inspiration,

Amanda Stuart

AM: Thank you for your letter. It is a scandalous news that Australia is with 90% for spanking. Is it the British tradition? I don't need to read the articles, the voices are the same in Germany and France. The universal ignorance is hopeless indeed. And it is exactly the result of being spanked and having thus become confused.

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