First and foremost, as is my custom, I will propose a book that will provide you with a wealth of information. It was written by a mother who fought a narcissist in family court for four years to defend her daughters. And she triumphed. Congratulations to her!
What should I expect from a trial against a narcissist?
I’ll tell you about my situation: both parties filed a petition for custody of the children. I haven’t studied law and can’t speak to legal matters, but I can tell you how I felt and what you might experience.
The narcissist will fight for custody
And you might wonder why, given that he has never cared for his children in his life. I didn’t comprehend anything, and I didn’t even know narcissists existed before I went to court. I couldn’t see the sense of it. This leads us to another topic:
My personal experience: My narcissist had a wonderful plan if he were to gain custody of our kids. He explained it to me without blinking, as if it were the best idea since the wheel, was for his mother (divorced from his father, remarried, and with a daughter) to move in with him to care for the children (and for him, of course). She lives almost two hours away from him by train. It doesn’t matter if she has a spouse or a daughter. Rocambolesque? For you and me, but not for a narcissistic mentality.
The narcissist will lie, lie and lie again
And he’ll do so with three goals in mind. Following the logic of narcissism:
- To project the image of the oh-so-great-dad
- To make people feel sorry for him
- To make you look insane or unstable
How can it be that this poor man, who is so gentle with his children, is brought to court to take away the custody of his two little kids whom he loves so much?
That’s what the judge will believe. Or at least, that’s what the narcissist wants him or her to believe.
For the third option, to make you look insane, he may tell a lie so blatant, so outrageous, that you will want to jump out of your seat and yell at him – that’s a lie! But don’t even consider it!
You may rest assured that he will. Specifically to destabilize you in the midst of a stressful event such as a trial. Then he’ll remark, in that calm, unsettling tone (you know which one I’m talking about): You see, Your Honor, how is this disturbed individual going to have custody?
Here’s a video from H.G. Tudor (a sociopathic writer and self-professed narcissist) explaining what it’s like for a narcissist to go through a divorce. It doesn’t have to go that far, but you should listen to it (it’s simply audio) to be prepared in case it does.
H.G Tudor has also written books on the issue of narcissism, which he is well-versed in…. These are a few examples:
My own experience: In June, I moved out with my kids. The narcissist claimed in court that I had returned with the children in September. When my lawyer looked at me, I nodded and said no. That was the one thing that made me react. Fortunately, she had cautioned me that the trial was like a movie and that I should just watch it and then explain the facts when it was my chance to speak. By the way, he was the one who got up and yelled, “That’s a lie!” when it was my turn to speak. Surrealist.
How can I get custody?
One of the factors evaluated in a custody case is who has been caring for the children most of the time. I’m sharing my experience because I’m not aware of any alternative strategies that might be employed.
My lawyer made him talk. Nonstop. Narcissists enjoy bragging about themselves and their achievements. She inquired about his amazing job, which he described in great detail while extending out like a peacock. And now and then she would ask, did you look after the kids throughout this time? To which he said, in a nutshell, no, because he had more pressing matters to attend to. He said that I was looking after them.
Finally, I got custody of my kids.
As my lawyer told me at the end of the trial, she didn’t need to say much, because he was saying everything. His enormous arrogance astounded her as well. That was the only day she met him. She’d had enough.
A few tips for dealing with the narcissist in court
Divorcing a narcissist is more difficult because going to court is emotionally draining. First and foremost, maintain a calm mindset. It’s indeed easier said than done, but it’s critical.
Take some lime flower
It’s a grandmother’s remedy, which I tried and found to be effective. Although it didn’t keep me from having an anxiety attack after the trial, it helped keep me calm during it.
Don’t look at him
You’ve had enough of listening to him; he’s your abuser. Don’t look at him in the eyes, don’t even look at his back. Looking at him can generate a slew of unpleasant emotions, making you nervous and helping him in his plan to make you look unstable.
Hum a melody in your head
That will help you in following my previous advice of viewing the trial as if it were a movie.
Be clear about what you want to explain
You will only have to answer your lawyer’s and the other party’s questions during the trial. However, you may wish to highlight relevant details that you can mention in your responses.
You should now have a good notion of how to divorce a narcissist. As you can see, the goal is to make you forget you’re dealing with a regular person. This is a person who has a personality disorder. He’s not going to think the same way you do. He isn’t going to consider his kids. He’s only interested in his own gain, which in this case is saving money.
But don’t expect him to pay because he’s been required to pay a pension; that’s another thing. Economic violence is a serious issue that requires attention.
Your kids, on the other hand, will be with you. Always put up a fight for your kids. Fight for full custody and don’t succumb to the siren calls of joint custody due to paternal figure contact. It might be okay in regular circumstances. However, even if it is only part of the time, growing up with a narcissist can damage your kids.
Alimony is not the most important thing. Your children are.
You can do it!