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Summary

An examination of childhood trauma and its surreptitious, debilitating effects by one of the world's leading psychoanalysts.

Never before has world-renowned psychoanalyst Alice Miller examined so persuasively the long-range consequences of childhood abuse on the body. Using the experiences of her patients along with the biographical stories of literary giants such as Virginia Woolf, Franz Kafka, and Marcel Proust, Miller shows how a child's humiliation, impotence, and bottled rage will manifest itself as adult illness - be it cancer, stroke, or other debilitating diseases. Never one to shy away from controversy, Miller urges society as a whole to jettison its belief in the Fourth Commandment and not to extend forgiveness to parents whose tyrannical childrearing methods have resulted in unhappy, and often ruined, adult lives. In this empowering work, writes Rutgers professor Philip Greven, "[listeners] will learn how to confront the overt and covert traumas of their own childhoods with the enlightened guidance of Alice Miller."

©2005 Alice Miller (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

What members say

Average customer ratings

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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars

A good point ruined by misinformation

I have a strong connection with the idea that parents in our society are still allowed to treat children really badly, to the child's detriment. Certainly I have witnessed professionals who are supposed to be helping a child turn a blind eye to mistreatment of that child by its parent. However the potential of the book to make a difference is limited by sweeping generalisations and lack of understanding about contemporary psychological methods and trauma and attachment theory. Finally the link between developmental trauma and physical conditions needs to be demonstrated is frankly dangerous. The idea that one can recover from cancer by cutting off relationship with parents is astonishing and cruel.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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An incredible work

Eye opening and groundbreaking stuff. Revealing and insightful it has really given me an understanding of why there is so much dysfunction in our society

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Avoid if you don't want to hear about the bibile

What would have made The Body Never Lies better?

Stop mentioning religious notes.

What was most disappointing about Alice Miller’s story?

There is a lot of bible bashing in here. Using the ten commandments and moses as examples of psychological healing. Christ!

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The Body Never Lies?

all of it

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Majestic

Here about Alice for a long time and this audiobook has been in my library a while so glad I listened to it. She really touched me in so many places and brought me further out of denial about my childhood, recommend for any adult child :)

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Wonderful, inciteful....commonsense

Love it. More books on audible from Alice Miller please. Listen to your body, own and accept your own truths. Everyone should read this.

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    5 out of 5 stars

An Eye opener

I love this book. Alice Miller is a clear, profound and insightful woman and her book reflect that.
The only thing I would complaint about its that maybe the narrator was a bit to fast in his reading.

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    4 out of 5 stars

Valuable message, piece of a puzzle

As a part of a series of books about how we are wired to operate, it makes good sense and explains in an emotional way, how we are connected as minds to our body, if only by the end results of our lives. This book only lacks two things, in my opinion: better connection to the mechanisms and reactions of our body to our experiences, and what exactly is the term "cruel parenting" with a fair understanding of how "the perpetrators" are doing their wrong and when exactly. It is a complementary book to others such as "stumbling onto happiness" and "welcome to your child's brain", in order to get the idea. I liked a lot the fictional diary in the book which explains in an experiential way what the writer wanted to say but was "missing the nail". Overall worth the money and time. A piece of the puzzle for further self development or even for a professional to include in their sphere of view.

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Amazon Customer
  • 24-08-16

Remarkably Enlightened

This was the first time I have ever heard a self help book about abuse not ask me to forgive. It was such a relief. I feel clarity in my journey after hearing it's ok for me to be angry and not to forgive. I still have a relationship with my parents. I have no intention on stopping it. Today I have a new approach, be angry when you need to be, it's acceptable, there's no need to rush forgiveness.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Jane
  • 27-10-13

A healing experience

What made the experience of listening to The Body Never Lies the most enjoyable?

It's great that 'honour thy mother and thy father' is questioned in this book. There are some parents who should not be honoured.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Body Never Lies?

Don't know about moments but the whole book questions the way abused children are told to 'forgive' and 'honour' those who abused them when our bodies are telling us that our truth is so important.

What does Sara Clinton bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

A caring genuine sounding approach I suppose.

What insight do you think you’ll apply from The Body Never Lies?

It gives you the freedom to accept how you feel, to be understanding of yourself instead of being understanding of the abuser.

Any additional comments?

Good work.

9 of 10 people found this review helpful

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  • GML
  • 31-01-16

Why did I not get this sooner?

Sometime authors who write on the same theme are repetitive....this is NOT the case for this book or its famous predecessor (Drama of the Gifted Child).

I really liked the kind, conversational tone of the narrator, as well.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Crystal todd
  • 02-05-17

I agree with the author, but I was looking.

I learned about this book from another psychologist that I respect very well. I was hoping to get ideas as to what signals the body is trying to tell you. This book was more of an overview and understanding that childhood trauma cause the issue.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • alejandra
  • 29-04-17

too much drama

I Think it is only pinpointing problems without offering any solution. It is just repetitive, no way out.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • T. Villa
  • 23-02-16

revealing

Very insightful book on the negative effects of religious moral code on victims of abuse.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Holly Forman
  • 20-09-15

Every therapist should read

Great book. A little slow during the first quarter but definitely a must read for therapists.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Wendy Tuck
  • 20-08-15

Insight into the way parenting impacts children

The way Alice Miller uncompromisingly looks at abuse, neglect, and mistreatment of children from the child's point of view is truly an eye opener. She exposes the beliefs and emotions that adults experience as a result of harmful, even cruel parenting. She liberates the reader from having to retain a helpless dependency on their parents out of guilt, obligation, or an insistence on forgiving and honoring one's parents. She gives many examples of famous and ordinary people whose bodies never lied, although many remained unconscious of their own biography and suffered. Fascinating book, great storytelling, and such a beacon of hope for treating our children much much better.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

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  • Christy L. Braman
  • 20-02-18

An uneducated view of forgiveness

Forgiveness is NOT about condoning the offense but is about releasing the anger. When not released it becomes toxic. The book was a waste of money.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Julie Gosney
  • 08-05-18

Super Disappointing

I gave this book multiple chances... after the first few chapters were just shallow analyses of dead authors' family lives, I kept thinking--surely this next chapter will go into more detail about how certain parenting faults result in specific bodily reactions... but no. I was disappointed chapter after chapter. I was expecting a comprehensive analysis based on fact. This entire book is simply the author's completely biased opinions, on a case by case basis, of dead authors (most of whom) I've never even heard of. It's complete speculation--most of her conclusions are based on the authors' late writings that don't even detail their own feelings or struggles. She simply fills in the blanks of their lives with no evidence whatsoever to support her claims. It's completely anecdotal, and for lack of a better phrase, it's simply "made up". I completely regret purchasing this book. What a waste of my time.