Divorcing A Narcissist – 5 Steps To Navigating The Most Difficult Time In Your Life
Many of you have been talking about divorcing a narcissist at the moment so I really wanted to reach out with this article to help you with that because I know many of you are contemplating this decision.
Divorcing a narcissist is one of the most gruelling experiences of your life, and it is impossible to be prepared for what is coming if you have no idea what that could be.
My heart goes out to you, if you are terrified about going through, or are in the thick of, the unspeakable trauma. No one can understand what divorcing a narcissist is like unless they have been through it.
I, and so many people within this community, have been there and empathise with you.
Before I start explaining the steps that are necessary for you to take whilst navigating a divorce with a narcissist, I want to grant you an understanding of what you are up against and why.
Know Thy Enemy
When getting a divorce from a narcissist, he or she does not think the way other people do. Yes, people can be hurt and triggered and may do unkind things – but divorcing a narcissist takes this to a whole new level. People who suffer from Narcissistic Personality Disorder aren’t wired like you or I am.
This person has assigned a False Self, an egoic construction to be the driver of their life. This mirage of self is highly insecure, not based in reality and cannot bear the ego injury of self-accountability, remorse or taking any personal responsibility for the breakdown of the marriage.
The narcissist’s true master, their own egoic False Self, demands total impunity, being above reproach and ensuring the narcissist was right and that you were the bad one. The narcissist must avoid the self-implosion of a “narcissistic injury” which means being confronted with their own defectiveness.
The narcissist in their own skewered thinking has to position themselves as the victim. You were the sick, abusive one. And the narcissist ensures through a crafted smear campaign that any “dirt” he or she has on you, such as your traumatised responses (which is totally understandable) are shared with all and sundry (including your close ones) to make them believe the narcissist’s versions of things.
This grants more fuel to the narcissist’s insatiable fire of entitlement. As far as the narcissist is concerned, he or she deserves the compensation of all of the money, resources, property, superannuation funds and businesses, the kids and maybe even the pets as well.
There are massive justifications in the narcissist’s twisted perception of things to align with this idea, regardless of the money, years, sacrifices, devotion and loyalty that you have contributed to the marriage. Additionally, it doesn’t matter how genuine you are (and most people abused by narcissists are incredibly genuine people) narcissists believe everyone thinks like them. They are convinced you are out to shaft them. They must strike you down before you destroy them. Nothing you could ever say or do will make them think the contrary.
The narcissist sees everyone in their “dog eat dog” model, as identical to the parts of themselves that they refuse to see and resolve.
(I know you have experienced this with every accusation against you possible!)
There is no reasoning possible in a divorce settlement with a narcissist.
If you try to appeal for clemency, care, decency or anything else that would make sense, it only spurs the narcissist on to smash you harder. Your emotional appeal is like blood to a shark. It’s like fear to a rabid dog. It causes you to get ripped to pieces even more.
You need to know this.
I hope this is explaining to you why you are going through one of the most terrible times of your life.
To the narcissist you are the enemy. Many people in your life may have been groomed by the narcissist to take his or her side. This person who you thought you shared a life with is now trying to destroy your life. Even the fact that you share children together does not stop the assaults you are suffering.
The narcissist hates losing the things that their False Self deems as important to sustaining itself – money, property, possessions, and status. Human partners are dispensable; they are merely a vehicle for these things.
So how do you deal with this horrifying nightmare?
Let me hold your hand through the steps …
Step Number 1 – Know You Are In a Spiritual War
I did an Instagram Q&A Live recently and there were many people asking about how to divorce a narcissist.
I said to them, “the greatest takeaway I want you to take from this Q&A is the knowing that you are in a spiritual war.”
What do I mean by this? That this war you are in is for your Soul, and it has to be addressed at the Soul level first and then at a practical level, otherwise you won’t win this war.
The solutions to divorcing a narcissist are not logical and practical. They are not accessed through intelligence.
First of all, emotionally you are shredded to pieces by a narcissist. It’s usually a massive effort to get out of bed and make a meal for yourself, let alone deal with the legal attacks and threats, as well as the gut, heart and Soul-wrenching truths you start finding out about this person.
Plus the knowing they are going after everything that is close to your heart with such intensity (usually coupled with malicious lies), that everything you thought was your life is under massive siege.
Additionally, the narcissist may already be well underway with setting up their new life, with a new partner, who they are already parading around to all of the people who used to be in your life, and maybe even your joint children.
It’s likely they have already moved in with this person.
Did you really mean this little to the narcissist, that they could move on so quickly?
Also, it’s very possible you now realise the narcissist has moved money. It’s disappeared. They have manoeuvred things so that you have no rights.
You didn’t see it coming. As a decent person you had no idea anyone was capable of such criminal acts. It’s blowing your mind.
Then … you try to stop the narcissist destroying you, you try to convince people who the narcissist has turned against you that you are not this person, you try to get the right professional help, but nothing is working.
Everywhere you turn there are no solutions. Matters seem to get worse, and in fact you find that people either don’t believe you, side with the narcissist or turn out to be narcissistic themselves – such as your solicitor, the judge and even therapists.
I promise you with all of my heart, in the 15 years that I have been helping people recover and rebuild from divorcing a narcissist – I have never seen anyone effectively tackle this, unless 1) they realise who they are dealing with and 2) they embrace that this is a spiritual war, which means no amount of practical application, whilst your spirit is traumatised and terrorised will work.
This is why we have to deal with it in a much deeper, spiritual way.
Leading to Step Number 2.
Step 2 – Calming Your Emotions
When you are emotionally shattered by a narcissist you can’t defeat them. Narcissists are emotional vampires. They feed off your painful energy, it is literally akin to feeding them the bullets to shoot you with.
Narcissists are like terminators – your fear and pain keep them coming at you, until you know HOW to flip this script.
You may say “Melanie of COURSE I am terrorised!” I know you are; I was too. It’s totally understandable and I’m not saying it’s right or wrong. This is about what does or doesn’t work in relation to what you want to create whilst divorcing a narcissist.
Which is, naturally, a safe passage out of this nightmare in the most powerful, fastest way possible with the best results for yourself.
What is necessary for you to take you power back and strip it away from the narcissist is developing your own personal inner solidness, calm, untriggered emotional responses, being as relieved as possible of the fear of the unknown, anchoring into a Higher Power (a Light that no narcissist can come up against) and establishing your alignment with truth, your own empowerment and the anchoring into and the activation of your own Source Self.
These may only be “just words” for you right now (as they once where for me) but I promise you that when you start to get there you will know exactly what I mean.
(And I dearly hope by reading this article you will get a stronger sense of this …)
This place, which is your emotional goal, is:
“You the narcissist …
- Are no longer my source of love, approval, security or survival
- Can no longer trigger me
- Will not dissuade me from standing in my truth and presenting facts in court logically and succinctly
- Are offering me the greatest opportunity to connect to myself, love and accept and heal myself to wholeness and create my own truth and life regardless of what you are or aren’t doing
- Will become, absolutely, Not My Reality!”
Accepting and starting to embrace this goal, and doing the inner healing work on yourself to get there, starts immediately cutting off the energy feed to the narcissist of your heartbroken, obsessive or traumatised emotions that were all about the narcissist.
You have started to take your Soul, sanity, Life Force and therefore power back by making this all about yourself.
Wait and see how the assaults and the effectiveness of the narcissist start getting cut off.
Wait and see how your energy and sanity returns and how the right people and situations and information start coming into your life to partner you, as you are now doing for yourself.
You are now in the spiritual battle armed with your spiritual shield (coming home to yourself) and your spiritual sword (your truth, values and alignment with your Soul and Higher Power) that cuts the narcissist off from infiltrating and hurting your life, like the removing of a cancerous tumour.
It’s simple physics – where there is Light (personal power, solidness, alignment and truth) there can be no darkness (manipulation, deceit, traumatisation).
This has to start on the inside of you.
This is Quantum Law – which is as absolute as gravity – so within, so without.
The change has to happen inside first. Then the outside will follow.
Now, maybe for the first time in your life, you are faced with needing to enter the unseen world and accept, engage in and win this spiritual war.
It looks like it is happening with the narcissist, yet they are fighting us with the energy of our trauma – and by defeating our own triggered and traumatised emotions, then we will defeat the narcissist.
Okay, now that I have explained the necessary foundation of working hard on your being to keep winning the war with your spirit – let’s look at some of the practical steps of how to divorce a narcissist.
Step 3 – How To Deal With The Narcissist
You can’t trust the narcissist – at all. Do not take their word for anything, or believe them when they are appearing to care or promise something regarding your divorce. If you give an inch they will take a mile. Do not agree to any deals.
I can’t tell you how many people have fallen prey to this, and discovered that the narcissist never had any intention of doing the right thing, this was all manipulation to get you to lower your guard and then strike.
Narcissists will use faux reconciliations to get the upper hand in this way.
Any and all agreements must be in watertight contracts. Anything you say to the narcissist can and will be used against you – so set up third part contacts, and if co-parenting please look up my resources on parallel parenting and create a third-party communication channel about the children such as ‘Our Family Wizard‘.
This immediately starves the narcissits of your energy as well as opportunities to abuse you, manipulate and set you up for the devastation that they wish to punish you with.
This I want you to know more than anything – do NOT have the mindset of, “I have to walk on broken glass and try to appease this person, not upset them and hope that they will just give in and do the right thing.”
No! This will end very badly for you! Didn’t you do this often in the marriage at your own expense?
Remember point number 1 – the biggest point of all. You are in a Spiritual War. What is your Soul graduation in this war?
It is the following knowing:
- I am powerfully, succinctly and calmly living my truth regardless of what you are or aren’t doing.
- I am creating and generating my life and taking my Soul, sanity and Life Force back.
- I am a POWERFUL creator with this alignment. Creation itself (God / Source / Life Force) has my back, and protects me and all that is dear to me (including the children) in this alignment.
- You, narcissist, are NO match for this amount of powerful Light.
- You, narcissist, are a dark self, who has no true energy source for yourself, who feeds off the pain and fear that you trigger in others. Without this, you are really a little person behind the curtains, pretending to be an omnipotent vengeful God.
- You, narcissist, are really nothing. You don’t have your own energy source.
Which brings us to the next step.
Step 4 – Don’t React, Document Everything and Expose Behaviour, Not NPD
If you want a divorce and custody and settlements then there is a good chance you need to take it to the legal level (if the narcissist hasn’t struck first).
Don’t be overwhelmed – because you can and will win if you know how to.
If you are working on your spirit diligently (healing from your inner triggers) then you will be in a great emotional centre to check out solicitors.
I’d love you to watch the solicitor, Rebecca Zung’s, and my interview together about this.
Now, expect the narcissist and their solicitor to throw mud – and hard. Anything the narcissist can fabricate against you they will. Don’t feed the garbage – ignore it. Don’t get drawn into these tactics.
Stand true to your values and boundaries. The Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Program (NARP) and the supplementary free coaching we give you in the NARP Community Forum will be invaluable to help you with this.
Stick to facts, ignore fabrications and don’t give up ground. Don’t answer or respond to anything that is not factual. Play the straight authentic game. It unravels narcissists.
They need to draw you into the shadows to defeat you – the lies and the twists and the turns. If you refuse to and just present and expose facts, and ignore the rest, they can’t deal with this.
The narcissist’s shots across your bow will be dirty, low and they may enlist people who you thought you could trust against you. As shocking as this may be – still don’t bite. Don’t react. Stick to calm facts.
Whatever you do, don’t try to diagnose the narcissist as a narcissist to others (this will go against you badly) simply unemotionally expose facts. This is why it’s important for you to succinctly save and document everything – just clear facts. Not the stuff that could sound like emotional tussels and emotional betrayals – that will go against you too.
When narcissists can’t trigger you or get narcissistic supply from you, and when they don’t know what is going on – their fragile, insecure egos usually lose control.
Narcissists unravel under these circumstances and do stupid things.
When you stop bowing to their egoic threats, and are unperturbed and unresponsive, narcissists really don’t handle it well. Make sure any contact they have with you is exposed and accountable. When they won’t be able to help themselves, and you capture their outbursts on voice message, text, email, or Our Family Wizard you have valuable information for your case.
Have a running diary where you document the date and time of any incident – and state the facts without emotional evaluations.
When in Court don’t look at the narcissist and their solicitor. Ignore them. Have discussions only with your solicitor and the judge. This also chops off the narcissist’s narcissistic supply and disarms and substantially triggers them.
Many a narcissist has exposed themselves and drawn rulings against them in court because NARP members have followed the above steps.
Which brings us to Step 5.
Step 5 – Defeating The Narcissist
You will hear in the usual narcissistic abuse forums how it is impossible to beat a narcissist in divorce proceedings.
This is not the truth at all. Every day we have NARP Thriver members in our community having wins against narcissists in divorce courts, from all over the world.
This result comes from one of 3 reasons:
- The narcissist does a no-show to court
- The judge rules in the Thriver’s favour
- The narcissist capitulates and hands over whatever the Thriver wants
Light defeats darkness.
Let’s go back through this again, in real-life terms, how this was achieved.
The person, up against the narcissist, was:
- Untriggered, unaffected and unperturbed by anything the narcissist tried to throw at them
- Unattached to any emotional connection with the narcissist
- Exposed facts calmly, rationally and intelligently
- Granted the narcissist no emotional energy whilst doing so
- Was not attached to “any outcome” from proceedings, they were simply expressing the truth for the truth’s sake and the empowerment of their own Soul
- Knew by being personally authentic, calm and centred, that a Higher Power (Source) had their back
This is the graduation of winning the Spiritual War.
This is the equivalent of standing up against a demon with your own powerful light and seeing that, without your fear, it has no power over you.
Most of us (until discovering this powerful spiritual truth) tried all the usual “human ways” to defeat a narcissist (none of them worked). Whereas, the greatest defeat to a narcissist is, “You can no longer affect me. You have no emotional power over me.”
This is the greatest ego insult of all. This is what drains the narcissist of any power and energy and makes them come face to face with their crippled, defective, shockingly insecure, immature and powerless self.
They have to run. They have to get away from you.
They will give you whatever you want to get away.
It’s too horrifying for them now to try to keep going up against you.
They have to cut and run, and go connect up with someone else that they can draw into their dark web.
Darling reader… do you understand now?
Of course, from start to finish this is quite the journey. It’s probably the biggest and most challenging journey of your life.
It takes self-diligence and healing. It takes you not getting caught up in your pain and trauma, so that you don’t react the human way and stay on course to get this mission done.
The best combination I know of to get this mission done (from step 1 – 5) is NARP and the coaching in our incredible community – the NARP Community Forum – from our incredible Thriver Team and members who have been through this and have come out the other side.
I hope this article resonates with you, if you are stuck in the horror of trying to divorce a narcissist, and has given you hope.
Please also remember to share this article with anyone you love and care about who is struggling with this.
I look forward to your comments and questions below.