If you’re divorcing a spouse with narcissistic tendencies or diagnosed narcissism, you probably already know that this is going to be a unique challenge. People who are narcissists want to be in control and to feel like they have “won” any battle they’re a part of.
While you may not view your divorce as a battle of any kind, the reality is that your spouse may believe it is. Remember that your spouse may try to play games or drag out the divorce to wear you down and to get you to agree to things that you’re not happy with.
Your goal during the divorce should be to get the results you need. While negotiating can be an excellent tool for some divorces, if your spouse isn’t negotiating or is not cooperative, then it’s time to prepare for court.
Narcissists want to win, and they don’t care what it costs
Your emotional involvement in your divorce should be minimal if at all possible. Your spouse, if a diagnosed narcissist, may have impaired empathy. This is a part of the diagnosis and means that they won’t tally up their emotional losses in the same way that you will.
Instead, they’ll focus on taking steps to hurt your case. This may mean making accusations of being neglectful to your children or filing motions against you time and time again.
Yes, this is frustrating. It is time-consuming and costly, too. If this starts happening, your attorney’s job will be to address the problem and to help you move forward with your divorce.
Keep your attorney informed to help your case
The first thing you should do when you plan to divorce a narcissist is to get your attorney involved and to inform them about what’s happening. They will help you protect yourself by building a case that is strong even under pressure. They can help you know when to respond to your spouse about an issue and when to avoid saying anything. Don’t play the game, and your spouse will have nothing to use against you. Simply move forward with the steps you need to take to get what you need and end the marriage.