Alice Miller, child abuse and mistreatment

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To find the poison is healing
Friday October 20, 2006

Thanks Alice. With your help I survived the most cruel, ignorant, and now Iam sure, consciously so, mother. Her cruelty I justified all my life. I am 52. Twenty years ago I started reading you. I am a psychotherapist who used to work only with self-help therapy for perceiving other types of therapy as imprisoning as education. My clients these days leave so happy they have found the poison that was destroying their lives. The body never lies continues helping me to maintain my position and not recede to the little girl who always thought she was the cause of her mother being unhappy, ill, nervous, angry, etc. etc. I always thought I had to look after her. Always forgave her insults and dramatizations of unhappiness. My father was also a victim but he always stood up to her when my interests were concerned. He worked and brought a salary to her all her life. She never wanted to work even if we had serious economical problems. She did not want me to study. I have healed, though I am grieving the losses. This I probably will do for the rest of my life. But grieving is joy, compared to the pain of feelings of fear of abandonment, suffering, fear of death, not being loved, fear of despair, that a child should never have to feel. Thanks Alice. You are like a lovely aunty. I live in beautiful Granada in Spain and this is one of the places where they know how to grieve and turn it into art, flamenco art. Since I started your books, I started flamenco dance at 33 and never left it. I truly hope that one day children’s words will be the main voice and the hurting of a child will become the most punished crime in the world. Lots of affection from a child victim psychotherapist, P. J.

AM: Thank you for your letter. You say that your patients leave your treatment happy because they found out what poisoned their whole life. It is exactly what therapists need to understand. But most of them are afraid of seeing and feeling how their parents treated them and offer their patients morality instead of empathy. Yes, you are right, therapy can be defined as the courage to find the poison in our lives and to get rid of it by learning to have empathy for the mistreated child we once have been.

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