Divorcing a narcissist.

If your spouse has a grandiose sense of self importance, exaggerates achievements and talents, is preoccupied with fantasies of success, power beauty and idealization, then, according to the diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders, you may be married to a narcissist. There are two paths to every divorce, the legal path and the emotional path. Divorcing a narcissist can complicate the emotional path.

Narcissist personality disorder and divorce


The legal path involves the legal anaylsis in dividing assets and liabilities and determining custody and support. The emotional path involves feelings and divorcing a narcissist can complicate things. For example, a narcissistic spouse may think he/she knows more than his/her own lawyer, making things more complicated to resolve.

A narcissit wants to control every aspect of the divorce. They feel a sense of entitlement, lack empathy and will blame the other party for everything without regard to their own behavior. A narcissist may try to gaslight their spouse (e.g. “you made me do that.”), use the children as pawns and make false accusations to reenforce their own sense of entitlement.

Good old fashioned manipulation can be a useful tool in resolving a divorce case with a narcissist. Allowing the narcissist to be heard, making them feel important (while giving little weight to what is being said), can be an effective tool in reaching your goals by allowing the narcissist to think the result is in their control or their idea.

Alternatively, sometimes the narcissist simply needs to learn the hard way and be told by the court how things are going to be after a hearing or trial and preparation is key. After all, preparing for trial provides you the best leverage in settling a case.

There is no one size fits all rule book to follow when divorcing a narcissist. Rather, a multipath approach should be taken to achieve your goals.

By: Daniel Findling (c) 2024.Our Core Values.

Ph. 248-399-3300 : Email:Daniel@Findlinglaw.com : After hours emergency?+1 (248) 633-8583

I have been exclusively practicing divorce and family law in Michigan for almost 30 years. The attorneys at Findling Law all share the core value of practicing law to help people navigate change in their lives, without compromising principles.  We specialize in high socio-economic, high-profile and high-conflict cases, while also working with clients of all backgrounds. We recognize that the most important aspect of the practice of law is the application of the law to your specific circumstances. That is why we provide more free information on divorce and family law than any other Michigan law firm. We want to help you manage your situation. Allow our exceptional legal team to help you navigate the change in your life, without compromising principles.


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