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on 18 March 2007
I found this to be an excellent source of information and guidance helping me to make sense of and validate my feelings. Together with some of the other books I have read on this subject such as Toxic Parents, which I also highly recommend, these books have opened up a whole new perspective in my life.
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on 3 January 2011
Alice Miller writes persuasively about the lasting effects of various kinds of child abuse on the body.
Perhaps counselling will prove to be more effective than medication for these disorders.Hopefully more research will be done into this.The book certainly proved to be an interesting and informative read.
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An easily understood book but perhaps not a widely read book. This sums up the ideas that Reich, Gross, Adler, Stekel and Laing looked upon. The violence enacted within childhood becomes locked within the body and thereby festers.

This negative energy either becomes sublimated and later emerges as an illness or is expressed in anger and violence. In this way it repeats the revenge cycle.

Alice Miller reveals all with vignettes and case histories drawn from literature, newspaper articles along with a reflection upon herself and her previous work. Easily digestible but harder for many to take on board, as it entails returning to experiences that will have been shutdown, erased, forgotten or sublimated..

Alice Miller takes on the hoary old chestnut - why does everyone who has been sexually abused not turn into Ed Gein, Ted Bundy or Myra Hindley?

It is because someone rescues them upon a life path, the childhood is never determined but the choices become severely curtailed - unless someone is rescued by an emotional lifeguard. If not, the drift into making those choices to reenact the violence reoccur, for a number of rationales. This perspective gets up the nose of the neo-eugenicists who want to boil humans down to their genetic key. They are the new hip-priests, filled with religious fervor fueled by their desire to discover "original sin."

So the academic world just stares scratches its head and searches for the psychopath gene, it does not have anything else to offer apart from mechanical reductionism, because it fails to understand a life body. When all the time human behaviour is encoded within the daily interactions they seem incapable of reflecting upon.

Alice Miller provides the infrastructure to see the world from a different perspective; the correct one. Do not waste your time on the ersatz psychology courses which abound as Ponzi Schemes.
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on 5 September 2009
Superb book, her insights are set out simply and with many examples. Whilst I find it hard to accept all of the book's premises it certainly makes very good sense. Should be mandatory reading for all writers/artists teachers and parents.
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on 26 October 2015
Seems to have a bee in her bonnet about the biblical saying honour thy father and mother. A lot of the focus went on her personal opinion and not on the title of the book. wanted to know about personal trauma and how it affects the body and how to help it. But got bored and fed up.

disappointing.
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on 4 February 2015
Good book other than Im not sure that 'Not' forgiving our parents in the long run is a good thing IMO
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on 23 April 2016
A life changing book. I hadn't read anything by Alice Miller before and her firm, no BS style really struck me. This isn't a workbook style of book, it's a blast of anger at cruel parenting and I found it incredibly helpful along with the therapy I'm having. Miller tackles a lot of about the taboo of not honouring your parents when they have been cruel to you and it felt freeing to hear a non conventional 'forgiveness' based viewpoint.

It was an easy reading style and yet a challenging book to read because what it said has shaken my life up. An excellent complement to Bessel Van Der Kolk's The Body Keeps The Score if you are interested in reading about trauma and its effects on the body.
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on 6 November 2015
I found the beginning & end chapter the best bit of the book & the middle went on for too long It got boring, but I did enjoy it
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on 9 March 2016
I read Drama of the Gifted Child and just couldn't get it. But this book makes much more sense to me.
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on 15 September 2014
Wonderfully astute and courageous book by a brilliant therapist. This book should be read widely.
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