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Mother-Son Incest: The Unthinkable Broken Taboo

  • Friday, May 19, 2017
  • 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM
  • Five Star Residences | 8100 Connecticut Ave, Chevy Chase, MD 20815
  • 5


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PRESENTER: Hani Miletski |

Type of Event: Continuing Education 

Category: Cat 1 CE 

Credit Hours: 2.0

DESCRIPTION: Based on a book by the same title (Miletski, 2007), this workshop will provide an overview of existing information on this rarely discussed and published issue. The presenter suggests that the mother-son incest taboo is not as strong as society's denial of its existence. She seeks to explore this denial and to increase awareness of mother-son incest among professionals, since lack of knowledge and awareness in the field prevent us from identifying victims and perpetrators, and from providing effective treatment interventions. The presenter will discuss and challenge five misconceptions that contribute to society's denial: (1) mother-son incest occurs only when intercourse is involved; (2) boys cannot be victims of sexual abuse; (3) sexual abuse is perpetrated only by men; (4) motherly love is free of sexual intentions: and (5) mother-son incest occurs only when at least one of the parties is mentally ill. This is a philosophical presentation, aimed at challenging the audience and pushing participants to look inside themselves, to identify and encounter their personal barriers to recognizing mother-son incest, and to begin a discussion about this important topic. All levels of experience are welcome.


  1. Discuss the five misconceptions that, according to the presenter, inhibit society from thinking about and accepting the existence of mother-son incest. 
  2. Recognize specific questions to ask clients when taking a sexual history and in other therapeutic situations. 
  3. Recognize their own counter-transference issue regarding mother-son incest. 
  4. Describe the "typical" mother who engages in mother-son incest. 


  • 1:00 -- 1:15: Introduction of speaker, participants, and topic. 
  • 1:15 -- 1:30: Misconception #1 -- Mother-son incest means intercourse. 
  • 1:30 -- 1:45: Misconception #2 -- Boys cannot be victims of sexual abuse. 
  • 1:45 -- 2:00: Misconception #3 -- What harm can be done without a penis? 
  • 2:00 -- 2:15: Misconception #4 -- Motherly love cannot be sexual. 
  • 2:15 -- 2:30: (if there's a VCR player) An 8 minute excerpt from the movie Spanking the Monkey (1994) and discussion. 
  • 2:30 -- 2:45: Misconception #5 -- One of them must be crazy. 
  • 2:45 -- 3:00: Excerpts from an article written by Frederick Mimmack, M.D. (1993). 


  • Kelly, R.J., Wood, J. J., Gonzalez, L. S., MacDonald, V., & Waterman, J. (2002). Effects of mother-son incest and positive perceptions of sexual abuse experiences on the psychosocial adjustment of clinic-referred men. Child Abuse & Neglect, 26, pp. 425-441. Lab, D. D. 
  • Feigenbaum, J. D., & De Silva, P. (2000). Mental health professionals' attitudes and practices towards male childhood sexual abuse. Child Abuse and Neglect, 24, pp. 391-409. 
  • Miletski, G. H. (2007). Mother-Son Incest: The Unthinkable Broken Taboo Persists. Bethesda, Maryland: East West Publishing, LLC. 
  • Rudominer, H. S. (2002). Consummated mother-son incest in latency: A case report of an adult analysis. Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, 50(3), pp. 909-935.
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