Tips for Settling a Divorce with a Narcissist

A divorce is one of the most challenging experiences a person can go through in their life. Divorcing a narcissist can make things vastly more complicated. Let’s explore what exactly a narcissist is, what signs may identify someone as a narcissist, and what you can do to overcome this situation.

How to Identify Narcissistic Behavior

A narcissistic personality disorder is defined as a mental condition that results in an inflated sense of self-importance, a lack of empathy for others, and a desperate need for attention. Underneath this mask of extreme confidence hides low self-esteem that may be shattered under even the slightest criticism. This disorder can create numerous issues in a diagnosed person’s life and everyone close to them.

Fragile and unstable relationships is one of the most common symptoms of narcissism. While a mean-spirited and selfish spouse may not inherently be a narcissist, when these symptoms are seen repeated over a long period of time, an individual may have this personality disorder.

Important Steps to Take

When dealing with a spouse who has this disorder, it can become challenging to bring up the topic of divorce. They may become extremely angry, yell, and blame you and others for any problems. Thus, it is essential to know how to best approach this situation, should it arise.

Anticipate and Recognize Desperate Behavior

Learn more about narcissistic behavior to better recognize when this type of behavior is occurring. You will be able to then anticipate and recognize when your spouse is seeking attention in an unfair and hostile manner, giving you the ability to respond in a thoughtful and precise manner.

Keep Communication at a Minimum

During the divorce process, refrain from non-essential communication. Responding to their pleas and begs for forgiveness and listening to their bouts of anger can be dangerous and non-constructive.

Seek Outside Help

As previously mentioned, divorcing a narcissist can be one of the most stressful experiences someone can go through, and you do not need to go through it alone. Seek out family and friends for guidance during this time. Additionally, it may be beneficial to see a therapist who is qualified to help those experiencing narcissistic abuse get proper psychological treatment.

Contact a Lawyer

Due to the instability and unpredictable behavior of a narcissistic spouse, settlement through mediation may not be enough to resolve a divorce. The narcissist may fight to draw out the length of the settlement, tell lies, and get in the way of a resolution. In this situation, an experienced divorce attorney could provide invaluable assistance.

Let Paul Riley, one of Ottawa’s and Greater Toronto Area’s premier divorce and family lawyers handle your case. Call now to get started.

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