Incest: What’s the Allure?

Raythe says …

The poll of forbidden desires had incest as one of the top choices of forbidden desires in fiction.

Valkyrie: Brothercest and Loki x Thor!

Now (ahem) those of you who know me at all, know that my catnip is a good incest story, preferably father x son, but I’m good to go with brothercest, too.

One of the stories that convinced me people might support my writing professionally was a fanfic story called Forbidden (Luke x Vader incest) and, on the site, there are two father x son incest serials, The Erl-King and its re-imagining The Fell, and one brothercest fic, Valkyrie.

I believe that there are several reasons why incest stimulates us:

The Erl-King: Father x Son Incest with a little predator on the side.

(1) True Love

If one is willing to break society’s greatest taboo and fall romantically in love with their parent, child or sibling then it must be true love. Because no one would choose to be so ostracized.  Therefore, there is this aura around such a relationship of a far deeper love than the ordinary.

(2) Unconditional Love

Oftentimes, familial love is spoken of as unconditional.  Your parents or siblings or children, ideally, will love you no matter what. How different than simple romantic love with someone who can just walk away! Your parent or sibling or child will always have the connection of blood with you. They can never fully walk away. More than likely, that base relationship will keep them trying longer and harder in the romantic arena where a non-related person would have walked away far earlier.

The Fell: Father x Son incest. The story that taught me what I really like

One of the things that I learned about my own preferences in incest was that the older party in the relationship (i.e., the one with more power) had to be the one being chased by the younger person.

Otherwise it would feel too predatory and that was a turn-off to me. But while I know I’m not alone in this, I’m sure there are those of you who feel quite differently.

What are your thoughts on the allure of incest?  Please tell us in the comments below:

42 Responses to Incest: What’s the Allure?

  1. Azrael May 23, 2017 at 6:49 pm #

    I have to agree on the two points you mentioned, that’s why i like it. And I also think you should update forbidden, I read it and it’s really good, you should update it.

    • Raythe May 23, 2017 at 7:12 pm #

      Thanks for the liking of Forbidden, but no … its not being updated ever.

  2. Natasha Barlow May 23, 2017 at 7:00 pm #

    I like the forbidden aspect of it and the even more awkward than usual moment of coming out to one or more of the parents lol.

    • Raythe May 23, 2017 at 7:13 pm #

      You’re right! That “coming out” is much more fraught with peril!

  3. Kass96 May 23, 2017 at 7:14 pm #

    I think for me, that it’s about the love being unconditional, and the fact that there is a familial bond that is preexisting makes it so much easier to believe in a HEA ending.
    Btw I’m rereading the Fell after having taken a break from it to read a couple of other stories in the Winter haven Universe, and what I’ve found (for me) is that by reading about Alric from different characters pov is that you start to see that he is something special even among the extraordinary characters of the Raythe Reign. universes.

    • Raythe May 23, 2017 at 7:25 pm #

      Yay! Alric is actually my most favorite characters in a lot of ways. He truly is the “king” of Winter Haven. The Unnamed One might be the “god” but Alric really is the heart of the place and makes it special.

      • Nightrage May 24, 2017 at 1:11 am #

        Well it works considering how the UO seems completely and utterly fascinated by him. I’d hate to be the being who actually does near or fatal injury to him! The entire place would be after you with more than just murderous intent.

  4. John May 23, 2017 at 7:16 pm #

    I suppose I like reading it because of the ‘if it’s wrong, why does this feel right?’ Argument. If a love is real, who are we to deny it? Its like the ongoingbattle for LGBTQ rights. Love is love. If two people love each other that should be the only thing that matters. That’s the world i want to live in even if its not my thing. #LoveIsNeverTaboo

    • Raythe May 23, 2017 at 8:22 pm #

      Love the hashtag!

      One of the reasons we do these posts is because those who do like this stuff realize there are a ton of others who do, too. And hence, the I’m not so weird after all.

      Second, those who aren’t into it, can look at what they like and think: hmmm, we’ve all got some interesting desires going on. I’m not so different either.

      So yes #LoveIsNeverTaboo

  5. Blak May 23, 2017 at 7:25 pm #

    Personally Im not usually for parent child incest. My leaning goes toward siblings, especially twins.

    I started to enjoy before my only sibling passed away 14 years ago but even more so after. (Little weird… yes probably) but it was the death of my sibling that made me realize just how much siblings know about and love each other.

    Siblings know all of each other’s darkest secrets, they are partners in mischievous deeds. Because of this they have a deeper connection and truer affection to each other especially twins then any other person. For me this is what the appeal of sibling incest that does it most for me.

    And on a side note. No I never though of my sibling sexually, thoigh I always wonder if they reproduced and there is a mini version running around…….

    • Raythe May 23, 2017 at 8:24 pm #

      Not weird at all, because I think it goes to the cover of what people ENJOY about brothercest/sibling-cest, et al. It’s the idea of someone who knows you to your bones, has that special relationship with you PLUS romance. That’s why I’ve never liked those stories that get rid of the blood relationship and try to pretend like they are ONLY romantic partners, because it simply isn’t true.

  6. Ipodpixie May 23, 2017 at 7:38 pm #

    I don’t and never have liked incest stories. I read them and all I can think about is my own father and brothers, which horrifys me.

    Everybody has their own kinks and that is perfectly fine – variety is the spice of life.

    • Raythe May 23, 2017 at 8:26 pm #

      I doubt most people think of their own family members when they read it (though I’m not judging if you do!) My own family has NOTHING to do with these stories. And I certainly don’t base them on anyone in my family. These are pure fantasies. But who wouldn’t want a father like Alric? Who wouldn’t … sigh. lol

      • Ipodpixie May 23, 2017 at 8:49 pm #

        I would want him but not as a father!

  7. Felina May 23, 2017 at 8:06 pm #

    While I myself am not a huge fan of Incest, I have accepted the fact that it’s here’s and that’s what some people like, and I may not like it accept the fact that there are such relationships.

    Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, likes, and dislikes etc. I respect that, even though I myself don’t like Incest, I can accept and respect other’s opinions.

    I personally think it’s wrong. While I love my family, I would never have sex with any of my direct or indirect family. Although I do understand the points I can agree somewhat, Incest just doesn’t appeal to me.

    But also I am the type of person that’s like “Well whatever makes you happy, go for it”

    Jeeze, I’m a mess. But that’s what makes me, well me. And I would be boring if I wasn’t me.

    • Raythe June 4, 2017 at 9:20 pm #

      Life would definitely be boring if we weren’t ourselves!

      The only thing I would address here is the idea that people who like incest in fiction like it in real life. That’s just not true of the majority of people who read it. It’s a fantasy. Just like when I pick up a sword in Dishonored 2 and enjoy slicing throats and creating mayhem all over the place. I would never do that in real life. I don’t want to do that in real life. I’m aghast just thinking about hurting anyone really. But I LOVE being a badass killer in games. That’s fantasy. Same thing with incest.

      A fantasy is a fantasy. Reality is reality.

  8. Moonlight Iris May 23, 2017 at 10:15 pm #

    I agree family tries more and longer for other family when it comes to loving them. I came to the site finding merman and Dark Earth on amazon. Sanctuary got me to buy the membership and I’m glad I did because I absolutely fell in love with the characters. When The Fell came out I was happy because not many write things like M/M and parental and child love. I definitely like the younger chasing the older maybe in the future you can make a father/uncle very hard to get and make the son/nephew really give chase.

    Ethan and Alric are in my top five favorite list, Nomad somehow beat out everyone else and took the number one spot (can’t wait to see what you do with the characters; heard there was going to be a Sanctuary book falling into Ever Dark universe)

    Raythe you’re awesome

    • Raythe June 4, 2017 at 9:28 pm #

      Making the younger partner be the chaser ensures there’s none of that “creep” factor that can come in.

      Nomad was, again, one of those characters that I never intended and then never intended him to be what he ended up being. So I’m always thrilled when characters like him get a shout out.

      And you are awesome too!

  9. Sapadu May 23, 2017 at 10:21 pm #

    Oddly enough, I disagree with the ‘True love’/unconditional love part — my experience has taught me that siblings and family are more likely to be the people who hurt you. Society EXPECTS it to be unconditional, but that’s not the reality. Perhaps that’s the reason the fantasy is so appealing — for people who had miserable family lives, to reverse it completely must be cathartic.

    My experience has been, instead, that ‘The Blood of the covenant is thicker than the Water of the womb’ — to use the full quote properly. So, I’d be more inclined to use that as an argument AGAINST incest — you’re stuck with your family, no matter what. It’s who you CHOSE to love that is more meaningful.

    • Raythe June 4, 2017 at 9:41 pm #

      You’re right that the unconditional love is part of the fantasy, too. I can honestly say that as much as I love my family I still want to have this idealized version of a family perhaps I could have.

  10. CarolineMcc May 24, 2017 at 4:30 am #

    I do like incest stories for the two main reasons that you have stated. But I also like midline incest stories.

    Example: Twin bothers that like the same guy and are willing to have sex at the sometime with him. Because it heightens the sex. They have the power to feel what the other twin is feeling.

    • Raythe May 24, 2017 at 7:45 pm #

      I can see what you’re going for here!

  11. ckhafre May 24, 2017 at 8:23 am #

    I agree with most of the others saying that the ‘forbidden’ factor is why some of us like to read fiction based on this subject. I also think that because more and more things are becoming accepted in society (the most recent being same-sex attraction and relationships), we are looking to other new avenues of forbidden love. Another thing is that most of us do not feel any attraction to our real-life siblings, so it’s a kind of fantasy to put fictional characters in that scenario. Personally, for me, I also feel that this type of love would be really intense because familial love is unconditional at some level; added with romantic love, the romance could be phenomenal.

    • Raythe May 24, 2017 at 7:46 pm #

      The intensity really draws me in as well.

  12. a_h- May 24, 2017 at 3:12 pm #

    I think the reason I first formulated these fantasies was due to a feeling of abandonment, both by parents and lovers. I wanted someone who would love me no matter what. Or at least, never leave me. This morphed into fantasies of a handsome, powerful, intelligent, abusive father who would love, hurt, and never leave his romantically entangled late-teens son. It had no attachment to anyone I knew in real life. But father/son incest is still catnip for me! Even though I know how it started and why it’s still there in my mind, and I have a healthy relationship now, I still love the fantasies. There’s something in them that just hits deeper than anything else.

    • Raythe May 24, 2017 at 7:52 pm #

      Fantasies are something that allow us to deal with real pain in a constructive way and then leave it behind, I think. So it makes it completely understandable to me.

  13. LaSharna May 24, 2017 at 11:01 pm #

    For me it’s the power dynamic, and the struggle to find oneself. I love a strong male character who falls in love with a strong but seemingly weaker character who is the process of growing into themselves. I like the give and take in that dynamic as they both learn to accept each other as lovers, not just as parent and child or siblings. Father/son get me every time as does older brother.

    • Raythe June 4, 2017 at 9:21 pm #

      The power dynamic is really enjoyable for me, too. Which makes sense why I always seemingly have an older guy with a younger guy though I like to flip the power dynamic on its head and often make the younger guy more powerful in some ways.

  14. Evilcleo May 25, 2017 at 2:26 am #

    I read it on occasion because it’s different. I mean, I enjoy cliché stories which when portrayed well, make you forget it is “cliché” but even that gets stale depending on your mood. Sometimes you want to read something daring, something that pushes the imagination. Because you know it is fiction and don’t want to think realistically, and let something forbidden become a relationship that you can enjoy. Weave it into the plot, give incest an explanation, and then you have an even better incest relationship because you feel their love was destiny.

    • Raythe June 4, 2017 at 9:43 pm #

      I think that incest adds a level of “problems” that normal romances don’t have. There’s built-in angst, which adds some fun.

  15. River Iris May 25, 2017 at 3:15 am #

    This can be a touch-and-go for me, I’ve come across more cringe stories than not. Some People use this just as a means for pedophilia/dub-con/borderline rape of a younger or less powerful person; i.e. your last point was right on point. Everything else too. But what drives my attention is a trope that is near and dear to my heart: coming of age. ‘The Erl-King’ is still one of my favorite stories because Alric saw Ethan as a son first. They had a deep love that, at first and at its core, had little to do with romance. The flashbacks and the tender moments of father and son established and enforced that it was about that love and not Alric being a creeper. =p

    P.S. Those brothers that fall into the snow still give me head fanfic fuel. =D ♥

    • Raythe June 4, 2017 at 9:46 pm #

      There is something to be said about seeing the father x son interactions in The Erl-King really makes it strong in a different way than The Fell where they are getting to know one another first as strangers and falling in love as strangers. Though Ethan knows about Alric being his father, he hasn’t had the experience of that.

  16. Jih22 May 25, 2017 at 3:35 am #

    I think you explained it pretty well. They make for intense relationships and the forbidden aspect always draws curiosity. I do believe though that love truly does not hurt anybody as long as all parties involved are consensual and happy then people should let them be and worry about their own lives.

    • Raythe June 4, 2017 at 9:51 pm #

      Non-con has its place and I know that many out there love mixing incest and non-con. For me, its the love aspects, the choice aspects that work well, which is why I think my stories resonate with a lot of people.

  17. AzureH May 25, 2017 at 3:40 am #

    I think that part of my acceptance of the incest stories you write is that the characters are supernatural. There’s that fantasy tied into the characters so I can more easily suspend my belief and set it apart from a relationship that may, in reality, be unlawful in our society. You also write the couples so lovingly and passionately that I can’t help but root for their eternal love. I think that if any aspect of their love was coerced or impermanent, I think I wouldn’t keep reading the story.

    • Raythe June 4, 2017 at 9:53 pm #

      The supernatural element draws it farther away from reality. You can easily think Alric and Ethan are Elves so their culture would allow this. Which is why I always find it sad when people think that if you like a fantasy that you must want it in reality. Uhm, no, not at all.

  18. blaid May 26, 2017 at 12:37 pm #

    I love incest because it is unique forbidden taboo but since I am obsessed with the dark, powerful and immortal, it just translates as a dark kind of sacred to me. A bond between family, particularly close family, is the most important thing in the world. You always love your family, it is impossible not to. You may not like members of your family, but the love there is unconditional. Incest just takes that love, and builds it to a new and higher level, making it more intimate.

    In the Song of ice and fire series, I love the Targaryens, and certain members of the Lannisters (not Cersei, due to her blatant stupidity to be honest). One of my fave pairings of the Targaryens, is actually the rare Aegon “Little Griff” VI Targaryen/Jon Snow (Targaryen), because they are siblings (admittedly half siblings) with their mothers being from two opposite sides points (the North and Dorne), and there is a contrast between the two of them. And of course, there is magic in the blood.

    In the latter sentence, it makes me think of Breath of Fire IV, or rather the manga of it. Two opposite personas and perspectives, turn out to be one half of a whole God. They are drawn to each other, calling to each other, to become whole once again. The newest, have the goal to meet the other. It is a beautiful, dramatic symmetry.

    • Raythe June 4, 2017 at 9:55 pm #

      A “dark kind of sacred” is a great way to describe it. And, I admit, if I saw that in a blurb, I would be so down to read it!

  19. Eliakim May 30, 2017 at 3:21 pm #

    One of my favorite couples in the stories I write, is a FatherxSon. I love them so much, because the feelings they have for each other are really strong. Cole (who is the father) is totally in love with is son, and since his birth. Eon is his father’s reason of life and he kows that his father always will be here for him. To me, this is one of the most beautiful forms of love, because it’s an infinite and unconditional love.
    When I was younger, I thought that the real true love was one boy and one girl. Then, I grow up and now, for me, love is one personne with one or some other, independantly of the sex, the age or the bllod links between them… Moreover, paternal love seams to be one of the strongest forms of love we can find anywhere…

    (excuse my English, I’m french and I’m sure that there is a lot of mistakes in my comment… ^^”)

    • Raythe June 4, 2017 at 9:57 pm #

      Your English is just fine!

      Infinite and unconditional love is almost “more” believable because of the familial side of it.

  20. maria lazarou June 4, 2017 at 9:19 am #

    I t is unthinkable,forbidden,taboo maybe that’s why is alluring, but is not only that ,,it is the way you wrote the stories they are not repulsive,they are sexy, hot ,dark.(Ah Raythe you are so dangerous).

    • Raythe June 4, 2017 at 9:57 pm #

      I like being dangerous! Dangerous and awesome!

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