Silently Seduced, Revised & Updated

When Parents Make Their Children Partners
Narrated by: Craig Jessen
Length: 4 hrs and 33 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (155 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

When a parent singles out a child for special privileges and attention, that child is often unaware that the relationship is unhealthy - even incestuous. As adults, these children struggle to feel validated, because while they have not been directly abused, they feel a sense of violation and crossed boundaries - usually done in the name of 'love' and 'caring'. The parent's love feels more confining than freeing, more demanding than giving, more intrusive than nurturing. Yet these children suffer from what psychologist Kenneth Adams calls The Silent Seduction - because there is nothing loving or caring about a close parent-child relationship that services the needs of the parent rather than the child.

In this revised and updated 20th anniversary edition of his groundbreaking book Silently Seduced, Dr. Adams explains how 'feeling close', especially with the opposite-sex parent, is not the source of comfort the image suggests, especially when that child is cheated out of a childhood by being a parent's surrogate partner. He offers a framework to understand this covert incest and its effect on sexuality, intimacy, and relationships, and how victims can begin the process of recovery.

©2011 Kenneth M. Adams (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

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Great book on a delicate subject.

Honestly the narrator made it slightly creepy, but that's my own personal preference. The book is expertly written and helps the reader understand why they or their spouse acts a certain way and gives steps on how to move forward. It's a difficult subject and healing process, but this book definitely helps.

2 people found this helpful

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Powerful and Insightful

Man. I was tearful through so much of this book. So uncomfortable yet so very necessary for healing to take place. May we all prosper and be in good health even as our soul prospers. We must break generational curses. Do the work. I highly recommend this book if you are suspecting that something is off with your spouse’s relationship with a parent. Do not ignore what you observe. I also recommend this book to anyone that is about to become a parent so that you don’t pass this behavior down your family line.


Ephesians 1: 17-18
that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him, 18the eyes of your [f]understanding being enlightened; that you may know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints,

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Loved it

This book shed a lot of light into my life growing up. It resonated with me and validated me ........

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You are not alone

It had a lot of case studies which were helpful but it was a little short on information on how to recover.

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A wonderful book!

This book provides an explanation for feelings of low self-esteem and confusion, and clear instructions for what to do in order to heal.

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Best book I've listened to regarding covert incest

This book has been very helpful for me. I was skeptical to buy the book at first but I am so happy I did. The book was filled with great examples that were easy to comprehend and apply to your own life.

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Finally, so glad to find this book!

I have long struggled with intimacy issue and have spent a lot of time in therapy and read numerous books. This book nails my experience and my struggles. Extremely helpful. Highly recommended.

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Vital information

Like most good books I wish I would have known this earlier....but I’m glad I can apply its teachings now.

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Good read but can get uncomfortable as it should

Will most likely bring up some uncomfortable emotions. Long forgotten skeletons that need to be dealt with.

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Great book!

This book helps not only to victims of emotional incest but also to their partners. I did not understand the wrong dynamics in my partner's family. This book was very eye opening for me because i realized that there is nothing wrong with me asking my partner to be emotionally engaged in our relationship. I finally can name a problem that occurs in my relationship. It also helped to protect my child from his family as well as myself. With these families it is never-ending cycle of abuse. Doctor Adams helps to break this cycle. I am glad that someone is not afraid to write about this topic! It should not be taboo.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 07-08-18

A godsend of a book

This book was recommended by a friend in recovery. I have struggled for years with intimate relationships despite much therapy, awareness and 12 step work.
This book explains and offers solutions to the riddle of why I sought out women who intrigued rather than those who might allow for intimacy.
Equally I understand why I felt responsible for women’s happiness rather than understanding my own needs.
Emotional incest is extremely damaging and it takes work to undo the damage.
Get this book if you feel you might be or might have been too close to a parent who told you they loved you. They may have been fulfilling their own needs rather than the needs of the child

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  • Anonymous User
  • 04-17-20

informative and interesting read!!

I was struggling to find a way or words to explain my husband's mothers behavior toward my husband. I knew it was not normal and i wanted to use the word incestuous but it wasn't physical in nature. I used words to describe it into Google and I ended up stumbling across this book, it 100% sums up everything I was thinking but had no idea what it was. I found the narrator fine and easy to listen and understand. it's the information that is the key to a very confusing lock that sets this book apart from the rest!