The Drama Of The Gifted Child Book Summary, by Alice Miller

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Overview

Have you ever felt tension with your family at a holiday get-together? It’s not uncommon to feel that way. Many people carry childhood trauma into adulthood, which can have negative effects on their lives and relationships. This book will help them understand the source of this pain and how they can overcome it.

Despite the influence of our childhoods, many people deny their importance. In this article you’ll learn why people overlook the effect of their childhood on adult life, what consequences being abandoned as a child can have, and how parental pressure is dangerous for children.

Big Idea #1: Many adults are unknowingly burdened by suppressed childhood memories and emotions.

Have you ever felt like something was missing in your life, even though things were going well? This is a common feeling. In order to understand why people feel this way, we need to look at their emotions. Sometimes adults lose touch with their own feelings and can’t sense them anymore, which makes life empty. It’s essential for us to have emotions because they make our lives worth living.

The good news is that by understanding the science of emotion—which I call “the secret language of emotion”—you can learn how to get back in touch with your own emotions.

Unfortunately, these patients are unable to feel anything real. The source of their problem is rooted in their childhoods.

Many people look back on their childhood with fondness. They remember it as a simpler time, when they were free and had little responsibility.

But childhood isn’t just fun and games. Kids also learn to suppress their emotions so they won’t get in trouble with their parents. As kids grow up, they learn that if there are problems at home, it’s best to keep quiet about them because then the parent will love them more.

Let’s consider a child who has an over-controlling father. From an early age, that child would learn to obey their parent rather than following their own wishes. If they were beaten, they’d learn to suppress their tears and pain so as not to provoke the parent further.

A child with an overbearing mother might have problems with their sexual development. One case was a boy who had his genitals massaged by his mother when he was almost in puberty, which affected him adversely.

Children who grow up with parents like this often lose touch with their emotions as they get older. If you repress your feelings and memories, it can have serious consequences in the long run.

Big Idea #2: Repressed childhood emotions can resurface in adulthood in the form of destructive behavior.

Sexual fetishes, womanizing and drug use are often viewed as lifestyle choices, but they’re actually the result of repressed emotions from childhood. In adulthood, people try to keep their emotions in check by avoiding dealing with dark childhood memories. However, if adults actively avoid dealing with those feelings instead of facing them head on, they’ll express those emotions in other ways. When adults feel the onset of unwanted feelings from the past, some might acquire sexual fetishes or seek out a high number of casual sexual encounters instead of looking for a meaningful emotional connection. Others might drown their sorrows in alcohol or drugs.

It’s good that you can change harmful behaviors by dealing with your memories from childhood. This may take a while, but if you do it in therapy, then the process will be easier and more effective. When patients connect with themselves as children, they are finally able to connect with themselves as adults too.

The Drama Of The Gifted Child Book Summary, by Alice Miller

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