If you have a spouse who is all about themselves, then you may well be married to a narcissist. Narcissistic individuals want to “win” at every opportunity, and in your marriage, that may mean playing with people’s emotions, having an inflated sense of self and generally being difficult to live with.
For a spouse who has decided to end this kind of marriage, the fallout can be devastating. People with this disorder tend to want to win at all costs, which may mean dragging out the divorce and contesting what you want at every turn.
How can you make a divorce from a narcissist easier?
It’s easier to divorce a narcissist when you prepare in advance. Get copies of important financial documents, get witnesses who will back up your claims about parenting or what you’ve gone through in your relationship and bring your attorney onboard early.
Don’t tell your spouse that you want to divorce until you have all the right documents and support systems in place, so that they have a lower chance of taking control or manipulating the situation.
Truly narcissistic individuals don’t have a lot of empathy for others, and they also won’t take things personally. They won’t think twice about saying something hurtful or making statements that may not be true if they think that doing so will impact the case in their favor.
It is your responsibility in this case to make sure that you don’t feed that need for power. Route communications through your attorney and be prepared for a long, unpleasant divorce. It may end up being resolved quickly, but being prepared to handle a spouse who wants to drag out the divorce and cost you more money may help you better manage your time and emotions during the process.
Divorcing someone who is hurtful may mean that the situation becomes more contentious before it gets better. There are options, such as getting a restraining order, which may be needed in some cases. Your attorney will work with you to help you understand your options and how to protect yourself as you work toward divorcing.