How to prove a narcissistic father

17 Signs of a Narcissistic Parent & How to Deal With Them

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Published: October 12, 2021 Updated: September 27, 2022

Published: 10/12/2021 Updated: 09/27/2022

A narcissistic parent is incredibly possessive of their children and feels threatened by their child developing any independence. Children of narcissistic parents generally experience humiliation and shame and grow up having poor self-esteem. Oftentimes, these children become adults that are high achievers, self-saboteurs, or both. Children hurt by this type of parent will need professional help to recover from narcissistic abuse.

You don’t need to face the fallout from narcissistic parents alone. BetterHelp has over 20,000 licensed therapists who provide convenient and affordable online therapy. BetterHelp starts at $60 per week. Complete a brief questionnaire and get matched with the right therapist for you.

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Narcissistic personality disorder (NPD) is a mental disorder in which people have an inflated sense of their own importance, a deep need for admiration and a lack of empathy for others. But behind this mask of ultra confidence lies a fragile self-esteem that’s vulnerable to the slightest criticism.1

Not all parents have narcissistic personality disorder, but it’s not uncommon for a narcissistic mother or narcissistic father to display narcissistic tendencies, which can be just as damaging when rearing a child. Identifying the signs of narcissistic abuse can be difficult, but there are several common themes among narcissistic family members and parents.

Here are 17 possible signs of a narcissistic parent:

  1. Constantly needing the conversation to be about them
  2. Immature and selfish behavior
  3. Bragging about your achievements to others, but rarely acknowledging you or supporting you emotionally
  4. Blaming others for any problems you may have that actually stem from their own behavior
  5. Being well-liked and important to others, but controlling and harsh when no one is looking
  6. Making you feel bad for not doing what they want immediately
  7. Making you feel guilty by boasting about how much they have done for you
  8. Harshly opinionated at home but putting up a front for other people
  9. Being ruthless and unforgiving, doing anything to be on top
  10. Making you feel anxious and often lowering your confidence
  11. Being absent for your life events
  12. Making you engage in sports or other activities, despite your wishes
  13. Failing to provide warmth and emotional nurturance in the relationship
  14. Using you to attain personal gain
  15. Being bothered and annoyed when you need time and attention
  16. Making poor excuses to limit time together
  17. Displaying sudden mood changes and volatile anger

How Narcissistic Parents Affect Your Mental Health

Being raised by a narcissist can take a severe toll on your mental wellbeing. In public, these parents are viewed as perfect and loving. But behind closed doors, they rage, scream, and criticize. The parent will control the child’s life, be possessive, and view the child as an extension of the parent.1

Here are nine common traits of adult children who grow up with narcissistic parents:2

1. Indecision

Adult children of narcissistic parents fear that they will hurt someone else by choosing to do what’s right for them. They have been ‘trained’ to consider their parent’s needs first and foremost, and it is therefore hard for them to consider their own needs without feeling selfish for doing so. This indecision and guilt can be paralyzing.

2. Internalized Gaslighting

Gaslighting is a form of psychological manipulation in which a person or a group covertly sows seeds of doubt in a targeted individual, making them question their own memory, perception, or judgement. One example of a gaslighting parent is when they deny some experience from the past, invalidating their child’s feelings of the event.

Growing up with a narcissistic parent can leave an adult child feeling that they have very little to offer. Growing up, their talents and skills may have been downplayed, ignored, or co-opted by the narcissistic parent who felt threatened by their child’s skills. Even when the now-adult experiences success, they may feel that they don’t deserve it—this can give rise to impostor syndrome.

3. Loyalty & Guilt for Moving On

Even after growing up amid lies, emotional manipulation, and abuse, it can be really difficult for adult children to step away from caring for and loving their narcissistic parent. They will likely feel guilty for trying to step away or input boundaries, and may even enter into relationships with partners who show narcissistic traits. A love that is based on manipulation and conditions is something that is known to them, whereas a love that is unconditional might seem quite terrifying.

4. No Focus on Their Own Needs

As the parent lives vicariously through their child, the child’s goals are ignored. The child learns that their goals and needs are not important. Their focus is on pleasing the parent to stay in their good graces. This may lead to anxiety as the child strives to be the perfect child – living up to the narcissist’s unrealistic desires. Depression may occur as a result of the child not meeting the parent’s expectations.

5. Chronic Self-Blame

Whether or not the parent is openly abusive to the child, they are usually emotionally unavailable and are too preoccupied with themselves and their own concerns to hear the pain of their child. In order to try to maintain the family unit, the child shies away from blaming their parent and instead takes all the blame on themselves.

This can continue into adulthood, where the adult child continues to take the blame for things that aren’t always their fault. They become the scapegoat in many situations in order to keep the peace.

6. Echoism

Echoists and Narcissists complement each other, as echoists fear becoming narcissists, or fear taking any attention away from them. Essentially, narcissistic parents can explode into anger or burst into tears without much warning, which forces their children to take up as little space as possible in order to avoid triggering one of these emotional outbursts (also fearing taking any attention away from the narcissist in the process).

It can feel like walking on eggshells; trying to do everything possible to avoid their parent having a meltdown.

7. Insecure Attachment

Adult children of a narcissist are likely to become insecurely attached to their parent, never experiencing that safe base that they need in order to feel comfortable exploring their environment.

The neglect, manipulation, or emotional absence of a parent can leave their child questioning how safe they will be able to feel in other people’s hands. This leads some adults to become fiercely independent, developing trust issues since they had no one else to rely upon. However, it can lead others to cling to their partners for love and demand the attention of their significant other at all times.

8. Constant Focus on Others’ Happiness

Children who grow up with a narcissistic parent will have organized their whole life and personality around the happiness of their parent, and will then grow up organizing their life around the happiness of others – many of them working in the helping profession.

9. Always on Edge

The parent’s behavior is unpredictable. They are unsure what will please the parent, thus causing feelings of being on edge. The child will feel responsible for the parent’s happiness. They will also learn that their parent’s kindness comes with conditions leaving the child feeling beholden to the parent.

11 Ways to Deal With a Narcissistic Parent

Confronting a narcissistic parent head-on will lead to a battle. Pointing out a narcissistic parent’s negative or undesired behavior challenges the perfect world created in their mind, resulting in feelings of shame and vulnerability. Remember, however, that your feelings and point of view are also important when dealing with a narcissist.

Here are 11 tips for how to deal with a narcissistic parent:

1. Realize What Is Happening

You will never win with a narcissist. A narcissistic parent thrives on their sense of control, and you will pay dearly if you do not bend to their will. Getting their needs met is more valuable than having a functional family structure. If you try to compromise, they will only manipulate the situation in their favor. You need to realize that this is not normal behavior.

2. Accept & Let Go

Trying to change a narcissist is nearly impossible unless the narcissist wants to change. Accepting who they are will reduce your anxiety. Remember, the negative words and actions aimed at you are really projections of how they feel about themselves, and they are deeply wounded people.

3. Resist Gaslighting Attempts

Unfortunately, it is common for a narcissistic parent to make their child feel crazy or delusional. A narcissistic parent will tell you it’s sunny outside during a hurricane. Ignoring these narcissistic phrases and working on your self-esteem and confidence is key to your survival.

4. Be Compassionate

Though they may not show it, deep down the narcissistic parent does care about you. Under that hard exterior is a highly sensitive individual that needs compassion and empathy from you.

5. Prioritize Self-Compassion

After having a difficult childhood that most likely lacked compassion, it is time you give that compassion to yourself. Pat yourself on the back for making it through this abusive parent-child relationship. Learn to self-soothe and give yourself all the compassion your parent couldn’t give you.

Recovering from such a childhood is not an easy process. It will take time. So, be patient and forgive yourself. It is okay to put your needs first. It is okay to take time for yourself. It is okay if you do not have the energy to support others. It is okay to say no without offering an explanation.

6. Lean on Other Support Systems

Children of narcissistic parents may often have difficulty validating their own children. Seeking out the support of others is key. Create your own social network through friends, co-workers, social clubs, etc. It may also be helpful to join a support group with others who had narcissistic parents.

7. Develop Confidence & Self-Worth

It is important to recognize your self-worth in spite of the insults from your narcissistic parent. Finding activities that increase your skills and abilities will help boost your confidence.

8. Assert Your Boundaries

A narcissistic parent will often test and cross your boundaries simply to prove that they can. They may show up uninvited to your home, break family rules to get you angry, or play favorites with your children. You must set firm boundaries and enforce consequences when they are crossed.

It may feel like you are disciplining a child, but be firm and clear as to why you are putting your foot down. You may even need to give them a timeout by asking them to leave if they do not follow the rules.

9. Be Transparent With Your Plans

You may be tempted into subtle or sneaky behaviors with your narcissistic parent, but try to avoid the practice. You may be better off to state your plans and intentions clearly and concisely.

Let them know that you recognize their undesirable or harmful behaviors, and express your course of action. This practice will eliminate their ability to act surprised by your reactions, and it will reduce the risk of you feeling guilty or regretful about your decisions later.

10. Predict Their Next Moves

Narcissists are complicated and complex, but at times, their behaviors are expected and predictable. Help yourself deal with a narcissistic parent by making predictions of their next action and how you’d like to react.

Even if you are inaccurate, there is some benefit to being prepared for their next move. It’s unlikely their narcissistic traits will simply stop, so staying thoughtful can help limit the future damage.

11. Walk Away

There is a tremendous amount of societal pressure to maintain family relationships, but these bonds may do more bad than good. Spend some time fully considering the prospect of ending the relationship temporarily or permanently. In some cases, it may be the only helpful option.

All of these tips are easier said than done. It’s hard to deal with a narcissistic parent on your own. This is why finding a therapist who is committed to your wellbeing is so important. If you’re ready to get the support you deserve, find a therapist who specializes in working with children of narcissistic parents. Get started here.

Help For Narcissistic Abuse

Individual Therapy – Get personalized help with recovering from narcissistic abuse from a licensed therapist. BetterHelp offers online sessions by video or text. Try BetterHelp

Support Groups – You are not alone in dealing with a narcissist. Sesh offers over 100 different support groups per month, with at least once a week focused on narcissism. First Month Free

Books On Narcissism – See our handpicked selection of Narcissism Books List

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How to Heal From Narcissistic Parents

Most people will not understand the emotional toll you experience with a narcissistic parent. Seeking help from people with no experience of narcissism will only leave you feeling silly. Even if they tell you about problematic family members, it will not compare. It is hard to put into words your experiences in a way that others can understand.

If you’re the child of a narcissist, you will likely struggle with these problems:

  • Low self-esteem
  • Anxiety or depression
  • Codependency in other relationships
  • Poor boundaries
  • Being a people-pleaser
  • Inability to say “no”
  • Chronic guilt
  • Emptiness
  • Inability to express or handle emotions
  • Trust issues
  • Anger, confusion, stress,

Treatment for adult children of narcissists is very personal, so it is important to work with a provider who understands your experience and makes you feel safe. Make sure they understand narcissistic personality disorder and recovery from narcissistic abuse or trauma.

Finding a Therapist for Narcissistic Abuse

Recovering from a narcissistic parent can be a long process. Finding a therapist can be made easier by using an online therapist directory. Most sessions can be covered by insurance while self-pay costs typically range from $85 – $150. It could take months or years for a full recovery, but seeking professional help is the best way to heal.

Is Having a Narcissistic Parent All Bad?

Certainly, most people would not actively choose to have a parent with narcissistic personality disorder, but if you are a combination of resilient and fortunate, positives could emerge.

Some of the possible benefits of having a narcissistic parent include:

  • Better awareness of personality disorders. Navigating life with a personality disordered parent will serve as a great education in the world of mental health. This process can help you identify and manage issues in your friendships, romantic relationships, and in the workplace
  • The ability to distinguish someone’s words from their behaviors. A narcissistic parent may often say one thing and do the other. The incongruence can be jarring to a child, but learning how people display this inconsistency can encourage you to seek out people who are stable and reliable.
  • Increased thoughtfulness. Narcissistic parents can hurt by trying to make their wants your wants. When you can shed this burden, you can spend more time thinking about what you truly want and what direction you’d like to take your life.
  • Improved sense of self. In a similar fashion, narcissistic parents may think they know you better than you know yourself. Without their influence, you can identify who you are apart from them and their influence.
  • Independence. Personality disorders are frequently about control. Once you find freedom, you will never put yourself in that situation again. The autonomy you find will feel so compelling and rewarding.

Spinning a negative situation into a positive is not easy, and some will never have the opportunity to do so. If you can break away from the narcissistic influence, seek out the good to minimize the past.

How to Support a Loved One Dealing With Narcissistic Parents

Children of narcissistic parents are unaware of the life-long effect that will disrupt their life if left untreated. To support a loved one dealing with narcissistic parents or narcissistic abuse, you must first educate yourself on the disorder. Read articles and watch videos on the topic.

Here are some ways to support a loved one who has narcissistic parents:

  • Avoid blaming them, as they are the victim in the scenario
  • Be compassionate and listen to their story
  • Validate their feelings
  • Help them to create a safe space to share their experience
  • Remember that they have been trained to accept this behavior
  • Be patient with them during their healing process

Final Thoughts

I know first hand of the struggles of dealing with a narcissistic parent. You are not alone. Talking to a therapist or reaching out to a trusted friend or family member can make a big difference in how you feel.

Additional Resources

Education is just the first step on our path to improved mental health and emotional wellness. To help our readers take the next step in their journey, Choosing Therapy has partnered with leaders in mental health and wellness. Choosing Therapy may be compensated for referrals by the companies mentioned below.

BetterHelp (Online Therapy) – BetterHelp has over 20,000 licensed therapists who provide convenient and affordable online therapy. BetterHelp starts at $60 per week. Complete a brief questionnaire and get matched with the right therapist for you. Get Started – The standard plan includes a weekly 45 minute video session, unlimited text messaging between sessions, and self-guided activities like journaling. Recently, they added Yoga videos. Get Started (App) – Mindfulness and meditation can change your life. In a few minutes a day with, you can start developing mindfulness and meditation skills. Free Trial

Choosing Therapy’s Directory – Find an experienced therapist who is committed to your wellbeing. You can search for a therapist by specialty, availability, insurance, and affordability. Therapist profiles and introductory videos provide insight into the therapist’s personality so you find the right fit. Find a therapist today.

Choosing Therapy partners with leading mental health companies and is compensated for referrals by Circles, BetterHelp,, and

2 sources

Choosing Therapy strives to provide our readers with mental health content that is accurate and actionable. We have high standards for what can be cited within our articles. Acceptable sources include government agencies, universities and colleges, scholarly journals, industry and professional associations, and other high-integrity sources of mental health journalism. Learn more by reviewing our full editorial policy.

  • McBride, K. (2009). Will I ever be good enough?; Healing the daughters of narcissistic mothers. Atria Books. ISBN-10 : 1439129436

  • Malkin, C. (2015). Rethinking Narcissism: The secret to recognizing and coping with narcissists. Harper Collins.

update history

We regularly update the articles on to ensure we continue to reflect scientific consensus on the topics we cover, to incorporate new research into our articles, and to better answer our audience’s questions. When our content undergoes a significant revision, we summarize the changes that were made and the date on which they occurred. We also record the authors and medical reviewers who contributed to previous versions of the article. Read more about our editorial policies here.

  • Originally Published: January 5th, 2021
    Original Author: Nakpangi Thomas, PhD, LPC, TITC-CT
    Original Reviewer: Pat Bass III, MD, MS, MPH


  • Updated: October 12, 2021
    Author: No Change
    Reviewer: No Change
    Primary Changes: Updated for readability; added more signs; added more tips for coping; added the section, “Is Having a Narcissistic Parent All Bad?” New material written by Eric Patterson, LPC and reviewed by Dena Westphalen, PharmD.

If you are in need of immediate medical help:


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Narcissistic Fathers | Saddle Brook Divorce Lawyers Peter Van Aulen

Some of the most difficult cases in any family lawyer's career will almost always involve a narcissist. While both men or and women can be narcissists, this article is about fathers being a narcissist. The difficulty comes in demonstrating to the court that they are narcissistic. This article will explore how to prove a narcissistic father in a family law matter.

What is a Narcissistic Father?

These individuals are self-absorbed, tyrannical, negative, and are never to blame. They might also be highly critical of everyone but themselves, manipulative, lack empathy and often lies. They are incredibly difficult people to work with or reason with, primarily because they lack the ability to reflect on their behaviour. What's worse is that children with narcissistic parents inevitably suffer. Either they become victims of their parents' bad behaviour, or they become narcissists themselves, creating a dynasty of pain and frustration. With this in mind, courts will be watchful of a narcissistic parent and their relationship with the child. However, narcissists are skilled imposters, and many family law judges have been fooled by a narcissistic dad. Unfortunately, there is no definitive diagnostic test to determine whether someone is a narcissist, and it is a spectrum disorder. Some spouses are way more narcissistic than others. That is why it is important to know how to prove a narcissistic father whenever custody is an issue.

How to Prove a Narcissistic Father Involves Gathering Documentation

Keeping a clear record of their narcissistic tendencies will serve you well. It can be something as simple as maintaining a calendar and making a note of any arguments or unsettling conduct they do. But, remember that this calendar will be shown to the court. Try to take an objective perspective on the other party and avoid calling them any names in the calendar. This will only serve to undercut your argument.

If the behaviour gets extreme, and the narcissistic person begins following you around town, harassing you at work or with hundreds of texts or phone calls, or shows up to your home at inappropriate times, make a paper trail. Call the police and start building a case to make this activity stop. You must do so right then and there. Otherwise, in a few months when this conduct comes up in court, your credibility comes into question if you characterize these events as extreme, but took no action against it.

Also, start making a list of others who could act as witnesses to these traits. Some great witnesses would be objective, third parties, such as the children’s teachers, coaches or babysitters. Then, monitor their posts and activity on social media, and take screenshots if you believe something can be used in proving their narcissism. Finally, save all the text messages and emails between yourself and the narcissist. You must learn to never take their word for something. All conversations with a narcissistic father should be in writing.

How to Prove a Narcissistic Father Means Helping the Judge see the Truth

Some of the biggest clues that a person is a narcissist is the gap between how they present themselves to others, what they claim, and what their actual behaviour is. In many cases, the father will not exercise their awarded periods of possession or visitation, but then bring a case or file dozens of frivolous motions to swap custody. The narcissistic father will often be able to find excuses for their behaviour, and almost always blame their ex or a third-party for it. Usually, they will accuse their ex of parental alienation. Rarely do they admit any fault.

If Appropriate, ask the Court to Speak Directly to the Child

In some cases, judges will speak to the children of the parents privately, and away from the parents. They should only do this if the child is mature enough to communicate effectively and understand why they prefer one parent to the other. Well-practiced judges, and judges who have children of their own, often understand how to communicate with children and can determine the truth of the narcissistic father's conduct outside the watchful gaze of the court.

If you have questions on how to prove a narcissistic father, then get in touch with the Law Offices of Peter Van Aulen today. You can receive a free initial consultation with a qualified attorney if you call 201-845-7400.

4 phrases of narcissistic parents who cripple us

Won another medal in swimming or a music competition that my mother once dreamed of, but for some reason the parents are still unhappy. And so all my life. “Not bad, of course, but my colleague’s son has already married, graduated from two higher education institutions and works as a director.” Familiar? Sounds like you grew up with a narcissistic parent. About how to identify a narcissist and not fall into his trap - psychologist Elena Savchuk.

People with narcissism resort to a variety of manipulations in order to achieve their goals. In this case, the children of narcissists become hostages. From the outside, such parents often seem selfless and devoted to the child. But they absolutely do not know how to sympathize, empathize, but they perfectly exploit and suppress those around them.

1. "It's not something to be proud of, if only you won the World Cup..."

Life with narcissists is like a closed triad of relationships: idealization - devaluation - rejection. And further in a circle.

The child is placed on a pedestal and showered with gifts and praise. At the same time, they make it clear that a lot is expected of him. He is special, which means he will definitely not disappoint his parents and will do what they want. The needs of the child himself, as well as his abilities, are not taken into account. If, for example, parents see a swimming champion in their child, then it does not matter to them that he is a talented flutist. At this moment, the child understands that the way he is, his parents do not like him. And he begins to build an ideal image that will be worthy of parental love.

If the achievements of the child of the parents are not impressive, then they immediately throw him off the pedestal, begin to criticize, compare with others, ignore and make it clear that he greatly disappointed them. The child develops a sense of guilt and a desire to grow up to high parental standards by all means.

Sometimes directly, and sometimes behind the scenes, the child is promised to return his disposition and love if he lives up to expectations. Parental love of a narcissist must be earned9% are due to his efforts and attention. So the narcissist can also get the admiration of society. Or sympathy if the child did not achieve much success. If the goals set by the parents are achieved, it will still not work to relax and enjoy success. A new goal is set before the child, and the achievement is devalued: “This is nonsense and not a reason for pride, now if you did this and this ...”.

2. “What are you thinking! There was no such thing.

This is called gaslighting - a form of emotional abuse, when the manipulator inspires his victim that her perception of the situation is inaccurate, incorrect. A person should have doubts about the reality of what is happening, so that he literally feels "crazy".

The narcissist often criticizes and makes fun of his child's feelings, blaming him for what is happening. Usually, he uses the phrases: “You provoked me”, “You exaggerate everything”, “I never said this”, “That didn’t happen”, and so on. As a result, the child begins to doubt himself and his perception of the situation. When a child grows up, he does not realize for a long time how toxic this relationship was. He cannot adequately assess the new relationship because he does not trust his instincts and ability to correctly interpret events.

Another method of "black PR", which is already used with an adult who wants to change relations with a narcissist, get out of his influence. The scheme will be similar, regardless of whether we are talking about a child, a spouse, or just about a once close person. This technique has three goals:

  • To portray the victim as an inadequate person who engages in emotional abuse, and to mirror her own idea of ​​a relationship with a narcissist.
  • Provoke retaliatory steps and prove that the other person is out of his mind.
  • Pull him back into a traumatic relationship while he tries to justify himself and prove to everyone that he is a normal person.

Usually all this is easy, given that narcissists are surrounded by a crowd of enchanted people and other narcissists.

3. “Think of grandma! She can't take it.”

A healthy parent-child relationship gives the child a sense of stability and security. The unhealthy are full of provocations. Narcissists love to create triangles and often share the opinion of a third party in order to validate their point of view and maintain control.

In a relationship with a child, there is always the shadow of a third person. For example, a deceased relative, because it is easier to idealize him, a neighbor's child, a TV star or a casual acquaintance. This is not necessarily some real person and not necessarily his real opinion, but manipulation should show that the child is behaving inappropriately, make him doubt himself and his feelings (“my friend is shocked by your behavior”, “people don’t they will understand if they find out what you are offended by", "great-grandmother would not give you a hand after this").

The narcissist relies on jealousy as a powerful tool to force the child to obey. Therefore, comparisons should draw the child into competition and feel the instability of their position in the life of a narcissistic parent.

4. "You could do better"

Narcissus hides behind the mask, the façade of the Potemkin village - a construction consisting of qualities and features that should arouse admiration. Due to the fact that the mask is very well made, it is difficult to understand where he is real, cute and charismatic or overwhelming and devaluing. The child suffers from cognitive dissonance, blames himself for being treated so cruelly by the closest person and tries to "become better", to catch up to his standards, while doing nothing wrong.

The narcissist does not actually sympathize with others. You can break to death trying to get through to him

Attempts to accomplish a feat for the sake of his love certainly flatter him, because they implicitly talk about his grandiosity. But in fact, a child is just another source of nutrition.

How not to become a hostage of a narcissistic parent?

Little children are defenseless against their parents. Teenagers and adults alike can try to make a difference. The bad news is that this is very difficult to do.

Ideal if you live together and have grown up so that you can move apart. If this is not yet possible, it is important to be aware of what is happening. Don't buy into what he/she says about themselves or about you. Don't fall for depreciation or gaslighting. If they put you on a pedestal and begin to praise you, don't lose your head either. Remember that this is a part of the game that you should not even start playing. Do not argue, do not try to convince. Agree and ignore everything that is said to you. Do not set goals for yourself to win or improve relationships, this is basically impossible. The goal is to make this communication less traumatic for yourself. Do not forget to periodically test the reality, other people will be able to tell if the narcissist is right in some matters.

Helps to reduce the time spent together, regulate its conditions. Usually narcissistic parents start active resistance - they come uninvited, give out clouds of unsolicited advice. Continue to resist - it is important to defend your boundaries very firmly.

Artwork: Shutterstock (Alexandra Dikaia)

How to Divorce a Narcissistic Husband: 4 Breakup Rules to Remember


DivorceRelationship CrisisMan and Woman


The scenario of the partner's behavior that led to the divorce is called narcissistic personality disorder by psychologists. This means that a person is confident in his exclusivity. Therefore, everyone who falls into his orbit, especially his wife and children, should treat him as an indisputable authority.

If the narcissist doesn't get the attention they want, they try to punish you. Not all of them openly violate the criminal code and use physical violence. Most turn out to be emotional abusers, which is no less painful for the victims.

A person with a narcissistic disorder lacks compassion even for those closest to him. You most likely will not be able to part friends. Divorce requires a clear defense strategy.

Signs of a recidivist narcissist

In Disarming the Narcissist, psychologist Wendy Bihairi gives an example of the most dangerous of this type, the "psychological recidivist", devoid of any moral restraints and respect for alien space. Distinctive features of such daffodils:

  1. He considers you his property and is beside himself with the fact that you are out of control. He will keep you as his victim at any cost and is ready to apologize for this. Don't be under any illusions - a narcissist never repents. And if you believe, he will find a way to punish for the humiliation to which you subjected him, forcing him to ask for forgiveness.

  2. Such a person's ambitions are not supported by talents and achievements, so he suffers from low self-esteem. If he sees that you or the children show interest in someone else, forgetting about his exceptional person, he will begin to suffer from jealousy and try to take revenge on you.

Wendy Bihairi believes that your safety, both mentally and physically, should be a top priority when leaving a narcissistic husband. Especially if you are dealing with a “psychological recidivist” who, at the very beginning of the divorce, will begin to intimidate the consequences of your decision.

You should completely isolate yourself from communication with him. Enter into any negotiations only in writing or through intermediaries you trust.

Why did you choose him

You need to stop putting the interests of the former partner, which he presented as the interests of the family, above your own. “A sense of codependency often distinguishes those who are fascinated by and marry a narcissist,” says Ross Rosenberg, author of The Magnet Syndrome: Why We Love Those Who Hurt Us. - People who are prone to codependency easily fall into the emotional service of their spouse.

The narcissist, as an extremely selfish person, sees his potential victim well and knows the tricks of seduction well, trying to tie his partner as close as possible. He mistakenly takes this as signs of special closeness. And for a long time he denies that this relationship is one-sided: the narcissist only allows you to love yourself and take care of his interests.

Recognizing painful addiction is the first step towards inner liberation from a destructive union.

How to get rid of a narcissist

1. Concentrate on what you can control

These are only your own emotions and actions. It is not worth wasting energy to predict his actions. Do not agree to what your ex-husband imposes on you, avoiding possible conflicts and maintaining the illusion of a truce. Imagine that during the divorce, he turns into a difficult business partner with whom you are forced to cooperate and achieve a beneficial result for yourself. From now on, your motto is: "Only the facts and nothing personal."

2. Set clear boundaries

The narcissist, as a person with a high degree of conflict, will try to provoke any, even negative, attention from you. Before the meeting, think over the plan of the conversation in advance and try not to deviate from it. If he starts to translate the topic, to convince you to return, say: “The relationship is over for me, we have different roads. You need to accept it." If he insists, leave.

3. Do not show sincere emotions

First of all, never apologize. The partner will immediately interpret this as a sign of weakness and try to turn it to their advantage by imposing decisions that are contrary to your interests.

Keep a close eye on the moment when you begin to show feelings and emotions (this may be a state of guilt, despair or panic), and tell yourself "Stop." Remember that your goal is a divorce on the most favorable terms for you and the children.

4. Seek support

You should be surrounded by people who fully share your position, who will not try to reconcile the parties in the name of preserving the family. Do not reject the professional help of a psychotherapist and a lawyer. Relatives will be needed not only in a psychologically difficult moment, when it is important that you are listened to. If a partner begins to threaten, negotiate with him only in the presence of a third party.

Learn more