How to Divorce a Narcissist
Divorcing a Narcissist is probably one of the most traumatic experiences anyone can go through. Surviving a divorce with a Narcissist seems impossible let alone trying to win one. The main problems being you are dealing with someone that has no sense of morality or empathy and is someone that just sees ‘winning’ as their goal despite the consequences.
This blog sets out exactly what you might be dealing with when you divorce someone with this characteristic.
The Mindset of a Narcissist
Narcissists want more than what they are entitled to and are clever at using the legal system to their advantage. They feed off our fear and anxiety and will use all and any information even fabrication to defeat you. No matter the cost to you or the children.
And why? They doesn’t see you as the victim, in fact they genuinely believe they have been treated badly, deserve all the assets in the marriage and also resident care of the children. Also, you are no longer of any use to them. You are no longer a useful form of supply and they see you as someone that needs to be defeated. “ Me versus you”.
During a divorce, a Narcissist needs to save face and will often go for money, property and children in order to do this, it’s a good way of reducing child maintenance and it will hurt you.
They will also most probably have started their new life prior to divorce proceedings starting. They may have also siphoned money away for quite a while to other bank accounts, hiding income, transferring assets to other people, a variety of methods that will leave you hurt and shocked.
This information will help you set yourself free. I’m not blogging about this topic to scare you but simply to help you understand that you are not divorcing a normal reasonable person, you are divorcing someone who will not be reasonable, sentimental or do the right thing.
How do I tackle the divorce then?
How to manage communication during Divorce
Use another party like a Divorce Coach or your solicitor when dealing with any correspondence with a Narcissist. Asking someone else to respond ensures that the right response is given. Do not answer any communication regarding settlements or child residence other than through your solicitor. If the Narcissist attempts to harass you through social media platforms, text messages or emails, make sure you document everything in case you need it for the future. Document everything. My golden rule with clients is never to reply to a message or email from a Narcissist for at least 24 hours. Any response given prior to this is a reaction and not a response.
When instructing a solicitor make sure they are experienced in dealing with complex parties and that they have enough experience to take on a high conflict case. Perhaps they have experience of dealing with domestic violence cases, women’s refuge case, anything that is more than the conventional divorce.
Don’t play a Narcissist’s Game
Try not to stoop to the Narcissist level. Don’t get sucked into the drama and the tactics. Don’t react to inflammatory or triggering comments from them, they are looking for a reaction, which feeds them supply. DON’T DO IT.
Don’t respond to threats either, try to remain calm, stick with the boundaries you have set and do not feel obliged to answer anything that is not reasonable. Don’t play the Narcissists’ game, rather play the long, straight, authentic game as the truth will out. They cannot survive in an environment where truth exists. I do not recommend fighting Narcissism, you will lose because you are not them, you are not Narcissistic and have morals, empathy and sentiment. This is the very reason you will not win if you play as they do.
How to defend against dirty tactics
Narcissists play dirty. If there is any information about you that they can use against you, they will, in fact they will add to it, anything to reduce your credibility.
Be ready and unsurprised when it happens. Try not to be shocked, this is what they do. Don’t counter throw, or respond with tactics also. Express your credibility in a calm, considered and rational way. If it all gets too much, seek help from others who have experience with dealing with a Narcissist.
I hope you found this blog useful and if you feel that you need help in your divorce process, feel free to contact me, Your Divorce Coach, to see how we can work together to help you achieve your divorce goals.