Monday, August 30, 2010

National Instittute of Mental Health Connects Childhood Maltreatment with Long Term Health Problems In Adults



Back in February, I completed my contribution to Hillary McFarland's book, "Quivering Daughters," a section that became the "Afterword" which addressed physical health problems that arise from the consequences of how children are treated when they are young.

In this previous post on Under Much Grace, I noted that research had started to confirm that cortisol and the investigation of heart rate variability in PTSD suggested strongly that physical health and emotional health were more strongly connected than previously suspected.  By the time I worked on the material for "Quivering Daughters," several new strong research studies connected both physical and verbal/emotional abuse to several specific health problems in adulthood

I wish that NIMH had released this statement so that I could have included this material in Hillary's book, and it is something that parents and adult children should both consider.
It's well known that early life experiences can affect a child's cognitive, emotional, and behavioral development. A recent study funded by NIMH takes this link one step further showing that negative childhood experiences, such as abuse or neglect, can affect a person's physical health as well. Published in the February 24, 2009, issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the study suggests a history of child abuse or neglect can lower a person's overall immunity and ability to manage stress, and that this effect may be long-lasting. (Read more.)

Visit the Quivering Daughters Blog and find *hope* and *healing*.   Read Chapter One HERE.


Thursday, August 26, 2010

Connections Between Illness and Discipline in Childhood

"A research team in San Diego in the 1990s asked a total of 17,000 people, with an average age of fifty-seven, what their childhood was like and what illness they had suffered in the course of their lives.

The study revealed that the incidence of severe illnesses was many times higher in people who had been abused in their child than in people who had grown up free of such abuse and had never been exposed to beatings meted out to them "for their own good."  the latter had had no illnesses to speak of in their later lives.

The title of this brief article was "Turning Gold into Lead."  The author [Dr. Vincent J Felitti] who sent me [Alice Miller] this article, commented that these findings are unambiguous and highly eloquent, but at the same time covert and hidden.

Why hidden?  The reason is that they cannot be published without leveling accusations at the parents."



Excerpt from (pp 29 -30)
Alice Miller
The Body Never Lies:  The Lingering Effects of Hurtful Parenting
WW Norton, New York, NY (2004)

From the article 
"The Relation Between 

"The ACE Study reveals a powerful relation between our emotional experiences as children and our adult emotional health, physical health, and major causes of mortality in the United States. 
Moreover, the time factors in the study make it clear that time does not heal some of the adverse experiences we found so common in the childhoods of a large population of middle-aged, middle-class Americans. 
One doesn’t “just get over” some things."


Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Fear Mixed with Dutiful Obedience ~ An Unsatisfying Counterfeit for Trust and Love



[Many people] cannot love and honor their parents because unconsciously they still fear them. 

However much they may want to, they cannot build up a relaxed and trusting relationship.

Instead, what usually materializes is a pathological attachment, a mixture of fear and dutiful obedience. . .

Individuals who believe that they feel what they ought to feel and constantly do their best not to feel what they forbid themselves to feel ultimately fall ill --
unless, that is, they leave it to their children to pick up the check by projecting onto them the emotions they cannot admit to themselves.

Preface, pgs. 14-15
Excerpt from
Alice Miller
The Body Never Lies:  The Lingering Effects of Hurtful Parenting
WW Norton, New York, NY (2004)

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Hidden In the Heart of the Adult Child



In every adult who has suffered abuse as a child lies dormant that small child's fear of punishment at the hands of the parents if he or she should dare to rebel against their behavior.  But it will lie dormant only as long as that fear remains unconscious.  Once consciously experienced, it will dissolve in the course of time.

(Pg 27)

Excerpt from
Alice Miller
The Body Never Lies:  The Lingering Effects of Hurtful Parenting
WW Norton, New York, NY (2004)

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Processing Emotional Pain Brings Relief to the Body


From Alice Miller's

"The Body Never Lies":



Children have no choice.  They must repress their true feelings if they have no "helping witness" to turn to and are helplessly exposed to their persecutors.

Later, as adults lucky enough to encounter an "enlightened witness," they do have a choice.  Then they can admit the truth, they can stop pitying and "understanding" their persecutors, stop trying to feel their unsustainable, dissociated emotions, and roundly denounce the things that have been done to them.

This step brings immense relief for the body.  It no longer has to forcibly remind the adult self of the tragic history it went through as a child.  Once the adult self has decided to find out the whole truth about itself, the body feels understood, respected, and protected.   (pg 27)

Excerpt from
Alice Miller
The Body Never Lies:  The Lingering Effects of Hurtful Parenting
WW Norton, New York, NY (2004)

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

One of Many Motivations for Resorting to Manipulation



From Alice Miller's

"The Body Never Lies":

These patterns of childhood will inevitably then be adopted by their victims and used on their partners and their own children, at work, in politics, wherever the fear and anxiety of the profoundly insecure child can be fended off with the aid of external power.  It is in this way that dictators are born;  these are people with a deep-seated contempt for everyone else, people who were never respected as children and thus do their utmost to earn that respect at a later stage with the assistance of the gigantic power they have built up around them.  (pg 28)

Excerpt from
Alice Miller
The Body Never Lies:  The Lingering Effects of Hurtful Parenting
WW Norton, New York, NY (2004)

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Who's Pulling Your Strings: A Must Read Book!

A bit about Dr. Harriet Braiker's fine book, "Who's Pulling Your Strings:  How to Break the Cycle of Manipulation and Regain Control of Your Life."


What I love about this book:
It condenses and encapsulates the best and most practical aspects of many books about communication and self-confidence, all without having to read 7 - 10 books on separate topics related to manipulation.  If you find a particular aspect of manipulation comes up for you as you work through the book, it can be a great guide to point you in the direction for further study.  But if you're in a place in life and you need just the short version, it's a great book.

Braiker presents lists of questions related to particular traits and weak points that easily manipulated people tend to demonstrate.  In Chapter 13 entitled "How to Make Yourself a Hardened Target" (echoing details and groundwork presented in previous chapters in the book), the author lists several questions and several solutions to weak thinking that sets a person up for failure and manipulation.  Two sections in this chapter explore in greater depth the problems associated with Locus of Control, a topic recently explored here on this blog.

Read several excerpts from the book (in the form of several blog posts) HERE at UnderMuchGrace.com.


How to get the book:


I cannot recommend this book highly enough, and though it is worth buying (mine is delightfully covered with my own notes and highlights), you can now download it for free!  The download seems to be designed for a particular e-book software, but I was able to read the book in Adobe without any problems.

Order it from Amazon.com.

Enjoy, and I hope the book changes your life in the best of ways.