Divorce is a complicated process at the best of times, but when you’ve got a narcissistic personality to deal with throughout the entire experience, it can feel like you’re two steps away from tearing your hair out. These people make it feel as though you’ll never be able to move on with your life because they go out of their way to make the settlement as complicated as possible. Narcissists refuse to relinquish their control over a former partner, and that makes coming to terms on things like equitable distribution, maintenance, and more incredibly tricky.
according to “LiveAbout.com“, the characteristics of a narcissist might include:
- An overwhelming need to be right
- An obsession with control
- A lack of interest in negotiation
- No ability to feel remorse
- Wants to be admired and respected
- May go out of their way to slow down the divorce procedure
- Hangs onto resentment and negative feelings
So, how do you deal with a narcissist in a divorce? The simplest solution is to prepare yourself for a bumpy road.
Dealing with a Narcissist in Divorce
Family law proceedings can be time-consuming, but with the right divorce attorney, you can get through the process as quickly and painlessly as possible. However, if you are dealing with a narcissist, then you may find that it feels as if they instructed their attorney to eat up as much of your time as possible, regardless of whether it costs them more money in the long-term. This feeling might com about when the opposing attorney files a lot of motions, makes multiple requests for extra time, delays with complying with financial disclosure and so on.
Additionally, according to Psychologytoday.com, narcissists might not be opposed to lying – even in sworn documents because they’re convinced that their own opinions are the truth. This could mean that it takes more time for you and your attorney to get to the bottom of the facts in your divorce case. The important thing to remember here is that no matter how frustrated you get, you shouldn’t attempt to address the problem with your former spouse. Even bringing rational thoughts and arguments to a narcissist won’t help, as a narcissist won’t be interested in hearing your side – they just want to show the world that they’re right. Instead of arguing with your ex, speak to your divorce lawyer and let them do the talking on your behalf.
Divorce lawyers have experience dealing with cases that involve multiple personality types. This means that they know how to attempt to bring the focus of the case onto getting to the truth, the right attorney will keep trying to push towards the outcomes that serve your best interests, no matter how much your ex attempts to derail the divorce proceedings.
Understand the Road Ahead
Unfortunately, a divorce proceeding with a narcissist is always going to be a difficult process. Your narcissist ex won’t allow the experience to be simple, and it’s important that you don’t simply give in to their demands because you want a simpler life. The decisions that are made during a divorce proceeding can have a huge impact on your future, from determining how much support your eligible for, to whether you should have custody over your children. People with narcissist exes are in a tough position, but they need to be willing to fight, with the help of their lawyer, to achieve the right outcomes.
The good news is that your divorce lawyer will be able to tell you exactly what you can expect, so you don’t feel caught off guard when you’re moving through the process. The narcissist might try to prove that you’re incompetent or imbalanced to stop you from getting your children, or they may make false claims to stop you from getting the maintenance that you’re eligible for. Ultimately, your divorce attorney is there to make sure that the truth does come out. It’s up to you to provide that attorney with as much information as possible and try not to let your emotions get the better of you.
Provide your attorney with all the paperwork, documentation and evidence you can to support your claims, and help him or her come up with a strategy that will protect you against any claims that your ex tries to make. Together, you and your lawyer will develop a plan of action, and as long as you stick to it, then you should get through the process as well as possible.
Keeping your Emotions at Bay
Perhaps the biggest challenge of dealing with a narcissist in a divorce is the fact that your ex, someone you previously loved, is likely to throw everything they can at you to get their own way. This might leave you feeling hurt, embarrassed and overwhelmed, but you’ll need to keep your emotions under wraps. Acting out against something that your soon to be ex says in court can might make you look bad in the eyes of the court, even if you never did anything wrong. Additionally, attempting to “get back” at your ex in any way might undermine the truth of your statements in the future.
Listen to your lawyer carefully, and remind yourself that when everything is over, you’ll be in a better place, with the destructive person out of your life. Marriage.com recommends working with a therapist during the process of your divorce if you’re dealing with a narcissist. A therapist can give you a safe outlet for your feelings of sadness and anger when you want to keep them out of the courtroom and avoid showing any weakness or fear to the person sitting on the other side of the room.
Are you going through a divorce with a narcissist? Are you concerned that you may need to start divorce proceedings soon? The faster you can get assistance from the right lawyer, the better off you’ll be. Reach out to the Law and Mediation office of Darren M. Shapiro today to discuss your case during a free initial up to thirty-minute consultation, and start your first steps towards your new life. Call us at 516-333-6555 or use our contact form.