divorcing a narcissist

My husband or wife is a narcissist. This sentence is uttered at least once a week in our office. We are told that this spouse will be charming, and we will not believe that he or she has psychological problems. Sometimes, our client merely has heard the phrase narcissist and decided that their spouse fits the bill. However, there are times that one of the spouses in a divorce is actually has a narcissistic personality disorder. Divorcing a narcissist can be frustrating, but there is a way to get through it.

When divorcing a narcissist, you have to be prepared for a number of things. First, and foremost, your legal fees are going to be higher than they should be because the narcissist will draw out the process and make you deal with frequent court appearances. You will deal with ridiculous and illogical demands and positions. You and your attorney will feel like you are putting out fires almost daily. Be prepared for invasions of privacy, rude and emotionally charged encounters with your spouse, and for you to feel helpless. Divorcing a narcissist is made even worse by the fact that they typically try to find attorneys who will channel their narcissism throughout the litigation.

So, how does divorcing a narcissist work? The first thing you need to know is that you cannot actually fight a narcissist. They don’t typically have the capacity to lose and must win at all costs. Even worse, our court system rewards people who lie. People can hide money at will, because most do not have the resources to hire forensic accountants to figure out where it went. People can lie and misrepresent on their disclosure forms and in certifications, because the court rarely punishes these lies. You will feel as though you are talking to a brick wall most of the time.

There is a strategy to divorcing a narcissist. You must hire an attorney who is smart, reasonable and strong. Don’t confuse that with hiring a nasty or aggressive attorney, because that is what your spouse will have and two aggressive attorneys will mean a disaster in terms of legal fees. If you already have an attorney that is not being effective, hire a new one immediately. Bad attorneys make difficult situations even worse. Do not discuss divorce with a narcissist until you and an attorney have a plan of attack. He or she may start to hide money and do other underhanded things if you have not properly planned. Most importantly, you need to choose your battles wisely. While you need to be proactive, remember that divorcing a narcissist will not be easy because he or she will always believe they are right.

If you are divorcing a narcissist, be sure to plan, plan and then plan again. It will not be easy, but we can help you get through it. Contact us for an initial consultation.

Related Posts
  • How do I know if my divorce is a good fit for mediation? Read More
  • Why you should start your divorce now. Read More
  • What does the divorce process look like? Read More