Divorcing a Narcissist
Key Things to Know when You Need to Divorce a Narcissist in New Jersey
Divorcing is not a burden-free process, and if you are dealing with narcissistic behavior on the other end, things can be even more challenging.
Narcissus, the son of the Greek river god, was distinguished for his beauty. He was so enamored with his reflection that it led to his demise. In modern times, we too have our narcissists, women, and men, who believe they are the Sun and the rest of us are the planets revolving around them. Being married to a narcissist is no fun, and trying to divorce one can be stressful.
At The Bronzino Law Firm, L.L.C., our team of lawyers has the experience and dedication you need in your corner when facing the challenging experience of divorce from a narcissist. We will compassionately listen to your personal situation to present a variety of options to proceed with your case in a way that you feel confident in the steps to take. After many years of practicing family law, we understand that going through a divorce is a complex process that requires open and trustful communication on every end. Dealing with a narcissistic attitude can make things harder to convey; you can count on our experience to get a positive outcome in your divorce case. We help in Bay Head, Rumson, Eatontown, Wall, Red Bank, and other towns throughout Monmouth and Ocean County, NJ. To talk to a talented divorce lawyer about your case and the road ahead to move forward, call (732) 812-3102 or contact us online for an introductory and free consultation.
What is a Narcissist?
Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD) manifests itself in many ways. It is one of many types of personality disorders and at times can overlap with ones such as BPD (borderline personality disorder) and bipolar depression. Work, school, and personal relationships can be affected negatively by someone with this disorder. There are twice as many narcissists who are male as there are females. A person can have narcissistic behaviors without having NPD, and the disorder should be diagnosed by a licensed professional, which is incredibly difficult to do because narcissists don’t believe that anything is wrong with their behavior.
Characteristics of a Narcissist Person
They have an overwhelming need for admiration, are very envious, or believe others are jealous of them. They are self-important and obsessed with being successful. They refuse to admit when they are wrong and cannot acknowledge the needs or feelings of others. Narcissists have very little empathy for anyone. They fantasize about life on a grand scale, more money, more power, more control. They feel entitled and will manipulate those in their circle of influence, especially those closest to them. They will take advantage of any opportunity to impress others or get what they want while looking down their nose at others in as arrogant a manner as possible. Conflict with a narcissist can be unbearable. They blame anyone other than themselves, twist and manipulate former conversations, and play the victim. It is as if they enjoy arguing as an opportunity to win.
Picturing Narcissistic Behavior in New Jersey
There are several tools in a narcissist’s toolbox. The most common is gaslighting. Also known as manipulation, narcissists use gaslighting to convince you that they are always right. They say you can’t leave because no one else will ever love you because of this trait or that. They tell you your friends don’t really care about you to keep you at home every night. Narcissists manipulate by distorting reality subtly, taking parts of conversations out of context, acting as though they are the victim to make you feel guilty, emotional, paranoid, and anxious. With a narcissist, you are always waiting for the other shoe to drop. Maybe you stayed out later at lunch, and your partner was at home with the kids. The manipulation starts with accusations,” You don’t love us. You’re going to leave us.” Those comments carry on into, “You’re such a bad parent leaving us here. If it weren’t for me, these children would be neglected.” The arguments can come at any time for any reason. They can make you feel crazy and second-guess yourself. Their level of insecurity and self-esteem fuels an almost constant barrage of nonsense that, at the moment, seems genuine.
Roadmap for Divorcing a Narcissist in Toms River NJ
The only thing more challenging than being married to someone with NPD is divorcing them. But there are steps you can take to make the experience less difficult. The most vital decision you can make is choosing an attorney who understands your situation and has experienced similar circumstances in the past. You will need the help of your lawyer in every aspect of the divorce, so choosing one who knows how to proceed and can act preemptively is crucial.
After finding a lawyer, start gathering all of the necessary financial documents from the household. Most narcissists in a marriage use the money to control their spouse, and you may not have online access to the accounts, but if your name is on the statement, you should be able to access statements by going to the bank directly. Speaking of finances, it is a good idea to begin stashing money away in your account. The first thing that will happen when you leave is you will be cut off financially. Your narcissist partner will expect you to come running back because they believe you won’t have access to funds.
Once you have some money saved up, a great lawyer, and the paperwork you need, the hard work begins. If you are concerned about telling your spouse face to face that you want a divorce, your lawyer can have the complaint served to them. You may not want to risk another conversation aimed at manipulating you into not separating.
Next, expect backlash. Your spouse is going to hurl insults, threats, demands and will probably have at least one or two tantrums before the proceedings have started. Sometimes it is necessary to seek a restraining order if the retaliation becomes relentless. Keep the communication with your ex at a minimum, preferably via email, avoiding a “he said, she said” environment where every conversation is taken out of context.
The Support of an Experienced Divorce Lawyer in Your Corner Can Make a Significant Difference
Be prepared for a lengthy divorce process. Having an experienced lawyer is a huge point in your favor, and that still doesn’t mean your ex won’t drag out the process as long as possible to make you miserable.
Keep firm boundaries. Please write in a journal every time your ex visits the children or talks to them on the phone. Please stick to the court-ordered visitation plan, and don’t be inconvenienced by your ex’s attempts to manipulate you into doing what they want when they want it.
Finally, take care of yourself. Lean on family and friends to listen and support you. Consider taking up yoga, meditation, or some form of exercise you enjoy producing endorphins and stabilizing your mood. Also, be upfront with your children (if you have them) about what is happening. You want to be the one explaining the situation, not your ex. Be careful to use language they understand and not bash your ex.
Reach Out to One of Our Capable Divorce Lawyers to Draft an Action Plan for Your Divorce in Monmouth or Ocean County NJ
Your best defense weapon is a top-notch divorce attorney with years of experience looking out for you and your family. It would help if you had someone who has seen challenging behavior before and can help you break away from a toxic marriage.
Whether you are considering a divorce or know someone who is, the Bronzino Law Firm, L.L.C., is ready to successfully provide you with the representation you need to navigate through a divorce from a narcissist.
We have served countless clients living in Jackson, Freehold, Berkeley Township, Beach Haven, or any other town in Monmouth and Ocean County. Contact us at (732) 812-3102 for your confidential consultation can reach us online. Our qualified staff is ready to help you move on to a better future.