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How do you know if you are divorcing a narcissist?

How do you know if you are divorcing a narcissist?

It’s more important than ever that you know if you are divorcing a narcissist. Narcissism in divorce is a hot topic that happens all the time and you need to know if you are divorcing a narcissist.

Narcissism disorder runs on a spectrum, and most of us have some level of narcissism if you’re looking at self interests. But on the far end of the spectrum, you have someone with a behavior disorder with consistent actions that affects relationships.

From a perspective of an attorney, you have to accept that your narcissist spouse is a bully and there’s nothing you can do to change them.

BUT, it will be something that affects the way that we behave in your divorce. You need to be prepared for it, which will help you move through the process more successfully and with less stress. It’s worth it.

How do you know if you are divorcing a narcissist?

There are multiple factors that are common to narcissists that you may be able to observe during your relationship. The following is a list of some of the most common narcissistic traits:

  • Narcissists are never wrong and lack accountability. They are experts on everything and view themselves as excelling at everything they do. They are never wrong no matter what has taken place in the relationship. Narcissists will take credit for what is right and blame others for what goes wrong.
  • Narcissists view themselves as the victim. Regardless of the truth, narcissists will always see themselves as the victim.
  • Narcissists are experts at self-presentation. Narcissists are masters of deception and projection, making them good at convincing those around them of their positions. Narcissists can be charming, at least at first. They also have a need to show off to others those qualities they perceive as being positive about themselves.
  • Narcissists are driven to win. They have a desire to win at all costs and are driven to prove themselves right no matter the consequence or truth of the matter.
  • Narcissists crave power and use games to gain the upper hand. They are driven to maintain power over others. Narcissists like to keep control over their relational partners by keeping them off balance.
  • Narcissists lack empathy. They have a total disregard of and indifference for how anyone other than themselves feel, including their own children.  Narcissists are driven by their own personal wants and needs, not the wants or needs of those around them.  They do not relate to others. They see others as a tool to obtaining what they want.
  • Narcissists need to feel powerful over others. It is not enough for narcissists to win, they need to feel good about themselves by getting over on others. They know they have done this when they can make others give in to their wishes.
  • Narcissists are masters of manipulation. They are driven to have others follow their wishes and instructions.  Common manipulative tools used by narcissists include flattery, negative exertion of pressure, guilt-tripping, the blame game, shaming and even threatening.
  • Narcissists exploit others. They use the people around them for their own purpose.
  • Narcissists become enraged when they perceive a personal slight. Narcissists are easily made to feel bad about a real or imagined wrongdoing. They are very sensitive to negative feedback or criticism.
  • Narcissists are in need of positive affirmation by others. They have poor self-esteem. This lack of self-esteem may be expressed by the narcissist either by self-deprivation or through arrogance. They are in need of constant gratification.  Narcissists expect others to be at their beck and call fulfilling their needs. The world revolves around the narcissist.
  • Narcissists are cynics. They do not have faith in others.
  • Narcissists feel entitled. They believe they are owed something by others and do not believe they should be held accountable for their own actions.
  • Narcissists seek acclaim. They want others to recognize their accomplishments.
  • Narcissists are preoccupied with outward appearances. They may be obsessed with beauty, fame, wealth, or success.
  • Narcissists have poor emotional regulation. They can become quick to anger when questioned or perceive even a slight threat. They are also oversensitive to criticism or negative feedback.
  • Narcissists break rules and violate boundaries. They believe they are above the law and rules do not apply to them.
  • Narcissists spread negativity. They thrive on spreading negative emotions because it is a way to make others feel bad about themselves. Spreading negativity allows the narcissist to gain psychological control over others.
  • Narcissists demand perfection. Narcissists have an intolerance for imperfections they see in others. Because narcissists believe they are perfect, they demand perfection from others. What they deem to be perfection is defined by the narcissist’s own terms and perceptions.
  • Narcissists are bullies. They engage in verbal, physical and/or emotional abuse.
  • Narcissists do not listen and do not care. They only care about their own opinion and goals.
  • While some narcissists are capable of love, their love may feel conditional and be wavering because of their need to control others. Narcissists are always searching for something better. Because of their need for control and a better deal, promiscuity is a key behavioral trait of narcissists. When narcissists think their spouse is committed to the relationship, they are more likely to cheat.

For more on narcissistic divorce, click here. 

If you are divorcing a narcissist you should be prepared. You must work with an attorney who is experienced. Contact us today.