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Children of the Self-Absorbed

Children of the Self-Absorbed
A Grown-Up's Guide to Getting Over Narcissistic Parents
Third Edition




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ISBN: 9781684034208
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$17.95In Stock
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About the Book

Do you have a self-absorbed or narcissistic parent who’s made you feel rejected, unloved, or unworthy?

Being a parent is usually all about giving of yourself to foster your child's growth and development. But what happens when this isn't the case? Some parents dismiss the needs of their children, asserting their own instead, demanding attention and reassurance from even very young children. This may especially be the case when a parent has narcissistic tendencies or narcissistic personality disorder (NPD). This fully revised and updated edition of a self-help classic offers a step-by-step approach to resolving conflict and building a meaningful relationship with a narcissistic parent.

Children of the Self-Absorbed offers clear definitions of narcissism and narcissistic personality disorder to help you identify the extent of your parent's problem. You'll learn the different types of destructive narcissism and how to recognize their effects on your relationships. Packed with proven techniques, you'll realize that you’re not helpless against your parent's behavior, and that you don’t have to give up on the relationship. Instead, you’ll find realistic strategies and steps for setting up mutually agreed upon behaviors, so you can fulfill your own emotional needs.

In this new edition, you’ll discover:

  • Skills for managing intense emotions
  • Tools for building character, self-esteem, and self-acceptance
  • How kindness and gratitude can promote self-healing
  • How to build trust and empathy with others


If you’re ready to begin healing from the pain of growing up with a self-absorbed parent and establish the boundaries you need to thrive—this book will guide you, one step at a time.


Nina W Brown (Author)
Nina W. Brown, EdD, LPC, DFAGPA, received her doctorate from the College of William and Mary, and is a professor and eminent scholar of counseling at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, VA. Brown is past president of the Society of Group Psychology... Read more

Books by Nina W Brown


“In this book, Nina Brown provides hope to those who struggle to overcome the negative impact of self-absorbed parents. She presents down-to-earth, practical strategies for gaining insight into the parental toxic effect, and developing approaches to overcome it. The information in this book can also be valuable to anyone working with adults trying to understand how their parents still negatively influence them as adults.”
Travis J. Courville, LCSW, CGP, FAGPA, licensed clinical social worker, fellow of the American Group Psychotherapy Association, certified group psychotherapist, and adjunct professor in the Graduate College of Social Work at the University of Houston

“Positive revenge and bypassing forgiveness are two brilliant strategies found in this remarkable guide that provides a detailed map to moving forward from wounds inflicted by parents who prioritize themselves above their children. This novel path can preserve and repair connection without retaliatory damage. Included are varied expressive exercises—writing, drawing, visualizing—that have broad reach for individuals, practitioners, and educators alike. With sensitivity and without judging, Nina Brown outlines how to implement these creative steps to healing that can lead the way to your most satisfying life!”
Helene Satz, PsyD, ABPP, CGP, LFAGPA, behavioral health faculty at Tripler Army Medical Center in Honolulu, HI; 2018 recipient of the Harold S. Bernard Group Psychotherapy Training Award from the International Board for Certification of Group Psychotherapists

“Excellent reference for anyone, especially children reared by a self-absorbed parent. The book is broken down into digestible bits, making it very easy to absorb. Nina Brown invites the reader to take the path to the person they want to be. All along, I thought I assumed the role of the compliant child; reading this book helped me to realize instead that I assumed the role of the rebellious child—this new perspective has been very helpful.”
Nial P. Quinlan, LPC, PhD, counselor in private practice in Norfolk/Yorktown, VA

“This very important book serves as a guide to recovery for those who have grown up with self-absorbed parents. Nina Brown’s voice leads the reader through understanding, self-exploration, and ultimately to healing. There is profound hope on these pages. This book provides the reader with clarity, compassion, and the tools for building a life that is full of self-acceptance and deeper meaning. The exercises suggested in each chapter offer the reader creative and thoughtful ways to integrate this material. It is truly a therapeutic journey led by a knowledgeable and trustworthy guide.”
Tony L. Sheppard, PsyD, author of Group Psychotherapy with Children

“The journey to authenticity is often bumpy. Nina Brown helps the reader understand why they may not be living up to their full potential. Hope is offered in developing the essential inner self, and more importantly, speaks to the strategies of how to address the destructive narcissistic pattern. No false promises are made to the reader, letting the reader know it will take diligence and determination to reach for the more cohesive, authentic self. Breaking unhealthy cycles offers hope for generations to come. The author reassures the reader throughout, and her style is anything but that of a self-absorbed parent.”
Karen S. Travis, LCSW, BCD, CGP, FAGPA, licensed clinical social worker and certified group psychotherapist in private practice, and chair of the Group Foundation for Advancing Mental Health

“For those of us who have often suffered the inevitable humiliating regression back to childhood during every holiday with the family, this book offers real help to the reader to develop the self-protective art of indifference—a cloak that can be used at many a holiday gathering—and to understand the subtle yet profound differences between ineffective and effective confrontation, empathy, and sympathy; and attaching response and defusing strategy, a completely new cupboard of techniques.”
Joel C. Frost, EdD, assistant clinical professor of psychology in the department of psychology at Harvard Medical School

Children of the Self-Absorbed offers practical advice and guidance. The creative techniques and exercises are priceless to both the reader learning how to identify destructive parental behaviors and how to cope with them, as well as the reader learning to nurture and protect his or her own developing self.”
Susan Hopper, PhD, clinical psychologist in private practice in St. Louis, MO

“Children of narcissistic parents are provided techniques to dig themselves out of impossible relationships with their parents…a thoroughly well-thought-out, useful manual to help adult children move toward more productive connection to their narcissistic parents, to themselves, and to others.”
Joan Medway, PhD, LCSW, psychologist in private practice in Potomac, MD

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