Continuing our series on how to be an empowered empath divorcing a narcissistic spouse, today’s focus are five traps to avoid in divorce negotiations.
The five traps are isolation, insinuation, secrets, manipulation and criticism. At Journaling Through we always promote empowerment. So we are going to flip those traps to work for you.
Isolation to Open
Insinuation to hard facts
Secrets to honesty
Manipulation to detachment
Criticism to neglect
Isolation to Open
One of the tactics of a narcissist is to isolate the empath. This will also happen in divorce proceedings, isolation from support systems, isolation from assets and isolation from the outside world. One way to combat this is to keep your information private, do not post on social media where are you going and so forth. Keep a distance from the narcissist as much as possible. The strategy for healing from the trauma of a narcissistic relationship is the no contact rule. You are paying for a lawyer, keep the distance and ensure that all dealings go through them. If you’re able to find an impartial support system to help you that will be best. A group that you can go to or a therapist.
Insinuation to Hard Facts
All too often narcissist will use insinuations that you are crazy, that you forget things, that you misremember conversations and this result in you feeling like wow, maybe I am going crazy. Another insinuation is that YOU are in fact the narcissist in the relationship. This is a very well known tactic and part of the awareness of getting out of the grip of the abusive relationship. Isn’t this part of the reason why you are divorcing in the first place? So stick to the facts, use your journal and all if needed, ask your therapist to write a report that you can use to your advantage on how you have been in an emotionally and spiritually abused relationship.
Secrets to Honesty
What you are doing to the narcissist is pulling the rug from under them. They hold the opinion that you are a possession, thus entitled to your money, your energy and your slavery. So now that you’re in divorce proceedings, you are saying no. You are not entitled to have me anymore.
This could create two different responses. Anger, lashing out and making you feel ashamed for doing this. It would be wise to make sure that you are out of harm’s way, hence the need for the no-contact rule in the previous remark. Alternatively, the narcissist will hide all personal assets, move money out of sight and on top of it play the martyr, the victim.
Do remember that the divorce, like the marriage is about THEM, not you. They are feeding their own ego any way possible.
The best way that you can protect yourself from this backlash is to keep all receipts, bank records and stand your ground. This is much easier said than done. Again why it’s so important to ground yourself and take charge over your divorce proceedings. Own it. Use the journal as a constant reminder that it’s a division of assets, nothing more, nothing less.
Manipulation to Detachment
Narcissist are best known for how they manipulate people, events and situations. Being realistic about how they can use this exceptional skill to play to their advantage is now flipped to your advantage. Detach yourself from situations where manipulation could play a role. From our research and experience this could include anything relating to mediation, personal acquaintances and setting people against you. Be aware that this will likely happen and counteract it with the no-contact rule, setting very strong boundaries and rely on your own empathic intuition. The smaller their influence on you become, the stronger you become and the manipulation will become more clear.
Criticism to Neglect
Narcissist cannot handle criticism. In divorce proceedings, you as the empath are not only criticizing the failed relationship, but also essentially who they are. You are essentially putting them down from their pedestal that they made for themselves. This could also be difficult for people close to you to understand if they are still a part of the narcissist's games. Remember that a trademark of the narcissist is that they do not have the capacity to feel empathy. Empaths feel everything, including other people’s energies. Narcissist live from the ego, neglecting their need to be the center of attention and their excessive need for admiration could put you in an awkward position. Divorce is a division of assets, nothing more, nothing less. Don’t neglect your own power, especially when dethroning a narcissist.
Our aim is to bring awareness of the pitfalls in legal proceedings. Not all of these things may happen in your own case, however it is great to journal down your own story. Without calling the person out to be a narcissist, write down the trends. Think of past behaviours and what the reaction was. For example, every time you would get a raise at work, it would be downplayed with an increase of your share of the expenses the next month.
Keep the pace and keep moving forward!