“The Body Never Lies” Book Review

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Alice Miller offers adults who experienced abuse as a child another way of seeing their experiences. Her positions are provocative and not for everyone. I was empowered by her argument that honoring ones parents, specifically those parents who were abusive, can cause victims more harm than good. Forgiveness for forgiveness sake serves no purpose and for Miller, being honest about your feelings regarding your parents is more important than obeying the Fourth Commandment for fear of punishment or a short-lived life. What I especially enjoyed was her definition of love: Affection, Attention, Care, Protection, Kindness and Willingness to Communicate. For me, this definition provided clarity and I began to see all of my relationships and friendships differently. Miller also uses historical figures such as Hitler to demonstrate how the abuse experienced in childhood can turn victims into abusers themselves or the pain manifests in the bodies of victims and creates physical aliments. Overall, Miller’s arguments are compelling and her book provides healing for child abuse survivors.

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