Chief among the emotions suppressed (or repressed or disassociated) in our childhood but stored in the cells of our bodies is fear. A child who has been beaten must constantly fear new blows, but it cannot live with the knowledge that it has been cruelly treated. Similarly, a neglected child cannot consciously experience its own pain, let alone express it, for fear of being abandoned entirely. So the child remains trapped in an unreal, rose-tinted, illusory world. That world helps it to survive.
-- Alice Miller, The Body Never Lies, p. 200