Alice Miller, child abuse and mistreatment

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The healing potential of rage and anger
Wednesday October 26, 2005

Dear Dr. Miller.

I am very grateful for your work, which provides an oasis of sanity and reality in the desert of sentimentality and denial. I am deep in my own process of mourning for my childhood and am very fortunate to have found an enlightened witness the facilitate my process. I am wondering about your
current attitude on the grieving process for healing the emotional traumas of childhood. In your most recent books, "The Truth Will Set You Free", and "The Body Never Lies", I only find one, or maybe two references to the grieving process that was so emphasized in "The Drama of the Gifted Child."
Have you changed your understanding on the importance and necessity of the grieving process? Does the assistance of an enlightened witness shorten or make the grieving process less important or were you trying to not be too repetitive in your writing?

I would greatly appreciate a reply if you have the time.

Best regards,

L.A.

AM: When I wrote the Drama in 1978, I didn't yet fully recognize the healing potential of rage and anger. In my opinion today, it is not enough for a former mistreated child to grieve about what happened, as psychoanalists assume. It is indispensable to rebell against the endured cruelty, as well as clearly recognize and reject it. Only this way we become free of the tendency to unconsciously repeat the same pattern with our children. The suppressed rage subsists in our bodies if it was never consciously experienced, nor expressed.

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