“And these two people, actually in their course of their marital—you wouldn’t call it a passage—a sort of marital misnavigation out in the middle of a hurricane section, quite customarily fought at every meal and this kid couldn’t be gotten to eat. He was starving to death! Food equaled fight, in their lives.
“Papa and Mama would sit down to the table; a nice meal, all right. Papa would start complaining about the food; Mama would complain about how hard she had to work, and it was quite usual and ordinary for them to pick up the crockery and shy it at each other. And not extraordinary for the kid to be hit! And this had been going on ever since this little kid could be moved up to the table. And this kid that should have weighed somewhere around eighty-five pounds was down to about forty-eight pounds and doing very badly. Now, that gives you some sort of an idea of the problem you’re going to run into.
“Childhood is so resilient and children are naturally so healthy that it doesn’t take very much to key out what’s wrong and bring them up to battery again.
“The prescription in this case was merely Straightwire on the first time they quarreled and picking it on up the line. Of course it was all through the prenatal bank, but it keyed out fairly quickly. I’m calling it Straightwire now; well, it didn’t have that technical name at the time, it was just ‘discussion of the matter.’
“And the next thing was to insist that the child be permitted to eat in the kitchen with a closed door.
“And they looked at me, both parents, and they looked daggers! And they said, ‘What has that child been telling you?’ And I could see right away the child was going to be punished. You see the parents were much more anxious to punish this kid than they were to get the kid well, actually!
“And I said, ‘Well, you know, I happen to know that the child can gain considerable in the way of weight if this is done. And I know that if this is done, the child will gain weight. Therefore, in the next couple of weeks the child will gain weight or I call the Humane Society.’ Unanswerable question. That was the end of that. The child gained weight.”
L. Ron Hubbard
“Child Dianetics—Part II”
8 November 1950