What is child abuse?

What is child abuse?
Thursday April 19, 2007

Dear Alice Miller

Reading your books has stirred up alot of feelings in me and for the last couple of months I’ve been trying make sense of deep and long lasting feelings of anger towards my mother in the face of an apparently happy family life. I am now in my 50’s and and although things with my mother have always been tense from my point of, she has always appeared mystified by my anger. My father also seems not to understand my irritation whenever I’m around my mother.

As I’ve tried to explore my feelings I’ve come to realise that I’ve never felt seen by my mother and it is this lack of connectedness which makes me feel such anger. When I am in her presence I feel I cease to exist. Now with the help of some therapy I am beginning to feel very deep sadness – too deep really to get very close to yet. It’s as if I have no story, no inner life.

Is this abuse?

AM: You are writing: “It’s as if I have no story, no inner life. Is this abuse?”
Is this not enough that you must feel as if your inner life has been killed? But you will find your story and your inner life as soon as you dare to feel your rage about what has been done to you.