Children of the Self-Absorbed

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A guide to getting over narcissistic parents

Hi, welcome to Bookey. Today we will unlock the book Children of the Self-Absorbed: A Grown-Up’s Guide to Getting Over Narcissistic Parents.

Many literary and artistic works pay tribute to parental love. Most people also feel grateful for their parents. However, as you may also realize, parents are not always great and selfless. They are also ordinary people and may hurt us in the name of love. For example, some parents have a strong desire for control, requiring their children to obey whatever they say and justifying such behavior by saying: “I do everything for your own good.” Some others are strict and harsh, they like to compare their children with others. Once they find their children lacking in some respects, they will criticize their children severely.

The book Children of the Self-Absorbed: A Grown-Up’s Guide to Getting Over Narcissistic Parents concerns the hidden harm one kind of self-absorbed parents can bring to their children. The author Nina W. Brown defines parents of this kind as “destructive narcissistic parents”. What are their characteristics? They have an attitude of entitlement like an ancient emperor, hoping that others can realize what they need without their having to say it, satisfying them immediately. They also lack self-esteem and often complain that they are exploited and ignored. Meanwhile, they always invite others’ recognition through self-deprecation. Lacking empathy, they ignore the harm of their own criticism and derogatory remarks, regarding their mean words as doing good for others, so that other people should understand. Furthermore, they even think that children should be responsible for their parents’ happiness and often tell the children: “If you love me, you should do this and that.” The book reveals the harm that the improper parenting of destructive narcissistic parents brings to children, helping people who suffer from the behavior of these parents and unveiling the mystery of parent-child relationships.

The author of this book, Nina W. Brown, is a famous scholar and professor at Old Dominion University. She is an expert in narcissistic psychology and relationships. This book has helped heal countless readers and inspired many therapists since the publication of its first edition in 2001. In the new edition, Brown answered some questions in detail according to readers’ feedback and proposed a number of feasible strategies to help readers alleviate the negative influence of their parents and reshape a new, better self.

In this Bookey, I'll illustrate the core contents of the book in three parts:

Part One: Narcissistic parents bring hidden harm to their children;

Part Two: Strategies to stop the negative influence of narcissistic parents;

Part Three: Take control of ourselves and become our own master.

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