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If you are divorcing a narcissist, understanding potential challenges can help you get through the process.
According to the Mayo Clinic, a person with a narcissistic personality disorder has an inflated sense of importance, a deep need for admiration and a lack of empathy for others. The individual is very vulnerable to the slightest criticism, causes problems in many areas of life (relationships, work, school or financial affairs) and may be generally unhappy and disappointed when not given special favors or admiration.
According to a Psychology Today article that incorporates input from a therapist and the author’s attorney, here are some factors to consider.
Here are some narcissistic traits have that are problematic for divorce:
Being right – Truth does not matter but “being right” does, and if playing the victim serves the goal, then a narcissist will do that.
Maintaining power and an edge – A narcissist is not interested in changing or becoming a better person and would game the system if at all possible, even if that means filing endless motions or false accusations. Dragging you through a court battle can make the narcissist feel empowered, and how long the divorce takes is of no concern. If you give up and go away, the narcissist enjoys the victory.
No empathy – Hurting the other spouse does not matter to a narcissist. This can take its toll on your children and you.
Court battles – The narcissist may prefer a court battle to negotiation because letting a judge decide means not having to take responsibility for the outcome. Beware, because the narcissist often wants to obstruct the process, will refuse to negotiate or settle, run up your bills, paint you as the bad guy, and continue dragging issues to court even after settlement or divorce.
There are many factors to weigh when considering divorce, and it is wise to seek legal advice right away. Attorney Chris Palermo takes your divorce seriously and works diligently to help you obtain as favorable an outcome as possible.