Pubdate: Tue, 28 Aug 2001
Source: Globe and Mail (Canada)
Section: Pg A14
Copyright: 2001, The Globe and Mail Company
Author: Alan Randell


Victoria -- Gabor Mate (Embraced By The Needle -- Aug. 27) postulates that 
children deprived of affection after birth tend to become substance abusers 
and that, "Later in life, such children may experience a hit of heroin as 
the 'warm, soft hug' my patient described: What they didn't get enough of 
before, they can now inject."

Dr. Mate has allowed the tragic stories of his patients to lead him to a 
false generalization.

What about all the affection-deprived children who did not become substance 
abusers? As for the "warm, soft hug" of heroin, I feel the same way about 
my morning coffee, and my parents were wonderful.

Alan Randell
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