Creating an Exit Strategy
If you are thinking of leaving your partner you need a plan. People are sometimes so anxious to get out they rush into exiting the relationship without an exit strategy. This is not the way to do it with a narcissist.
If married, a divorce without a plan could mean you end up losing custody or a home. Ask yourself, “What is my goal and how am I going to get there?” And then factor in that this is a narcissist and understand things are done differently with a narcissist.
TIP: You do not have to remain the victim of a narcissistic parent and you can choose to set boundaries to keep them from bothering you in your adult life.
“This book is a blessing. Organized, thoughtful and full of pain and how to deal with it, I salute you for telling us your story and analyzing the “divorce industry” as you call it. You have saved my daughter thousands, she learned what to say in court, and best of all she got custody.” —
This is a Guidebook and My Story. A how to plan for a difficult divorce, from behind the scenes to strategy with opposing counsel and maybe your own useless attorney to fraud, poverty, lies and finally a win bot at trial and on appeal.
If You Are Ready To:
- Live Without A Toxic Partner,
- Learn the Steps To Take Before You Say You Are Leaving,
- Learn How To Make Your Next Relationship a Good One (what red flags to look for)
- Re-engage With Life after Divorce
Then You Are Ready To Learn what to do / how to do it / when to do it
How To Leave
If narcissistic personality disorder or other emotional abusers are ruining your life, take action. The narcissist does not get better, but you can. Many people are both afraid to leave and afraid to stay thinking they are alone and nothing can be done.
Often, upscale abusers are perceived as being able to buy their way out, leaving the abused feeling completely powerless. Learned helplessness means you think you have no power to change a situation. It leads to depression. IT IS NOT PERMANENT. You have the ability to change yourself, your beliefs and a bad situation. You can UNlearn the feeling of helplessness.
Action is the antidote to depression.
Life can be good again. In fact, the more you act positively, the more your brain changes.
Ann, you have touched and positively healed so many deeply injured people and that certainly includes me. You have been my lifeline a million times, I have felt understood by you and not alone, you have educated and encouraged me, I have learned from you that I am not crazy, just badly traumatized including physically by the relentless domestic and legal aggression and the losses I have absorbed. Oh, Ann, you have helped me fight off a terrible sense of humiliation, shame and guilt.. And for being fatigued and sick and weepy. You are part of my clawing my way back up….E.K.
Go here and find the rest of this site. It’s chock full of information on identifying a narcissist, divorcing a narcissist, choosing the right attorney for this situation, and custody information specific to difficult divorce situations.
Identifying red flags in relationships so you don’t make the same mistake again. Ever wonder why you choose the same bad partner over and over again? You can break free of this cycle and kiss abuse good-bye forever!
The eBook…that takes you through my divorce with a narcissist. Startling description of fraud, tax evasion, emotional abuse, survival techniques and a look at the legal system.
If you want to see what divorcing a narcissist is like, this personal journey will show you why you need to prepare, plan and get help.
DIVORCE: The Real Truth, The Hidden Dangers, Surviving Deception, Betrayal and Narcissism
I read the whole article and I saw myself with 8 of the 9 features of NPD. I lived with a narcissist for 50 years, it took me until I was 73 years old to realize there was a name for it. I have been seeing a councilor, thats when I realized it was not all me. Councilor and I would go over and over my life with my husband and it finally sunk in that it was not my fault, he would put it all on me. I had 5 kids worked two jobs never looked ahead, I took one day at a time until my oldest was 19. Thats when I worked one job, but it was hard still had 4 children at home. Then he retired and left us, I had the bills house payment and he took the car ” he told me he was now retired and he is threw with me and the kids” loaded the car with his clothes and left. I was back working two jobs again, he did not send me money, I had to go to court to get child support took me two years to get 75.00 a week. Seperated 7 years, got back together, kids were grown he promised to change, in some ways yes, his alcholism had to go as he had heart attacks and by passes, but he still is that narcissistic person worse as he gets older. Wants me to feel sorry for hime and I will not give into his problems. (there is a lot more to the story) I do go to a councilor to keep from loosing my head.
This reminds me of some of the feelings that were stirring around in me when I had not yet identified what I was dealing with but was incredibly frustrated and depressed about my life with the man I was with, and I couldn’t get the thought of growning older with this man, out of my head. Around this time, I knew a young woman who was married and who died suddenly and I could not not stop thinking about how I don’t want to take my last breath with him in my head, my heart or my life. He had long been out of my heart but I didn’t feel that I could break free of him financially but desperately wanted to and this woman’s death knocked me to my core when I thought of how short life really can be. She had a husband who loved and cherished her and when you were in their presence you knew he loved and cherished her, it felt real. There was a light in her eyes and on her face, she beamed around him. I did not beam around my now ex. The light was gone from my eyes and from my face. I would look in the mirror and try to smile and I couldn’t smile a genuine smile anymore, I found myself perpetually sad and empty. No joy, and no zest. I recognized that I was not the same person that I was before I met him. I felt robbed of something, I felt unrecognizable to my own self. This feeling of loss and mourning for my former self stayed with me and shortly there after, I saw something on tv about emotional abuse and the floodgates opened for me and that’s when I learned about narcissism and everything began to unravel and change all at the same time and now I am in a different place. I’m so happy that I started to feel I had a right to recognize the feelings I was having and it is funny how everything started to snowball for the good and in my favor. After this woman’s death I found my spirit was restless and disturbed and I am so glad I started to pay attention. The idea of growing older with him or dying young with him was too much to bear.
Until very recently I didn’t realise narcissists existed. I find myself in a slightly different position to most given that I am the one with the financial means. I am well educated, with an excellent consultancy position and a very good salary. As I had no idea what he was I was extremely confused at his alternate rages followed by “love you chat later” type messages – Did he expect me to just move on from the torrent of accusations and verbal abuse that arrived in my inbox prior to that? clearly he did! I had also figured out by then that all the I love u’s meant nothing but couldn’t figure out what it was I had that was worth so much to him that he was trying so hard…….. I am a confidant, self assured, independent person and he had me reeling with confusion. (I know now I can’t figure it out and shouldn’t bother trying because my mind simply doesn’t comprehend that anyone can be like that. – Thanks to you guys for that!)
My X was arrested and charged with a really serious offence. At the time I had no idea what he was – to me he was the loving, caring chap who could never have been involved in such an offence. I stuck up for him – fortunately for me the stress of the trial caused the mask to slip and I gained a glimpse beneath, I started to call him out on his grandiose BS stories, lies and the promises he made and never kept (without realising what I was inadvertently doing and that this wasn’t the way to handle it). I installed spyware on his phone (at times questioned the black and white of the spyware evidence against him lying – he was that good a BS’er…) Instinctively I had known since the “glimpse” that something was not right and had been trying to get rid of him for a while but every time I “dumped” him I would be bombarded with I love you, I miss you, you’re my soulmate, life isn’t worth living without you text msgs. When I ignored him or told him to f off and leave me alone I was accused of verbal and emotional abuse(!), He would throw his “rough childhood” in my face and at one point even threatened to commit suicide as he was so miserable without me.
I found out that he was stringing 3 women along and one night standing any barmaid that would have him on the side and that he was in fact still married, not divorced as he had told me (his wife is currently in the local institution with serious mental health issues of her own after several nervous breakdowns– I feel very sorry for her as I can’t imagine having put up with it for 25 odd years!) It slowly dawned on me that his promises of change along with everything else were empty and it really was time to cut and run, this really wasn’t just someone who had a few self esteem issues as it had first appeared.
There was never an agreement between us that he move in, one day it was just “hi honey I’m home” – more confusion(!). And hard as I tried he would not move out. I caught him red handed with another woman one night so packed his stuff into bin bags and put it out onto the pavement but there was always something else that I still had or had stolen from him that he had to come and collect or come round and talk about…. I now call the armed response company and they send round an armed guard every time he announces he is coming over to collect .. or talk about ….
He has tried to gain access to my online mobile phone account so he could download call log records – presumably to phone my boss and others and start trouble for me, He has spread seemingly endless lies and vicious BS stories about me, he rants and raves to people about what he will do to me and what weapons he will use and the list goes on….
Like most of you I could write a book but re-hashing his lies, deceit and damage is of no help..
I am currently in the unenviable position of being a state witness in his trial. He sees me as the obstacle between his freedom and 25years inside so has tried his damndest to have me “bumped off”. – he would never do this himself – he is too much of a coward deep down but has attempted to manipulate others into doing his dirty work. As he thinks he so clever he reckons not even the FBI can get hold of bbm’s and stupidly tried to conduct most of his shenanigans there – I owe my life to that spyware – no question.
Fortunately I have the means to protect myself with a top notch lawyer, spyware, an expensive house alarm system hooked up to an armed response company and other measures. I am also fortunate in that I maintained a lot of my boundaries and never allowed him separate me from any of my friends or family, despite (20/20 hindsight) many attempts – so I have them all for support. I have also always been a sensible and down to earth person, never prone to histrionics so my friends and family tended to believe the stories, no matter how bizarre they got (and believe me some of his antics have been beyond bizarre!) and support me rather than ridicule me or question my sanity. It is however draining my finances and my energy…
I still live in fear of my safety and have made sure that one of my nearest and dearest friends has access to all my passwords and the spyware evidence just in case he is successful in one of his attempts. And it is a standing joke between myself and my lawyer that all the evidence I have so far provided he is to keep for my self defence/insanity plea in the murder trial if I see him coming first!
It is imperative to realise that in situations like these you cannot overreact, you cannot baton down the hatches tight enough or have too many measures in place to protect yourself. There is no such thing as overkill. They have no boundaries, when it comes to protecting your wellbeing that is one area there has to be no limits. Use everything available to you.
It is a fight for your existence, if not physical then certainly the existence of your soul…
Being an old “trekkie” I like to imagine a similar force field to the Enterprise’s shields around myself where he’s concerned. Invisible but oh so impenetrable!
Thanks for sharing this experience. I know it will serve as a warning to others and make them think twice about who they might be getting involved with and what some of their actions mean. You’ve given a lot by telling your story. Thanks. And best to you on the journey forward with him in the past. Ann
Where do these losers come from, I mean really! Where do they get that just by having a relationship with them that they get to change the course of your life forever? Relationship doesn’t work, you end it and move on but not them, they somehow think they have the right to take up residence in your whole being and then refuse to leave. They are truly pathetic. Even when they know they are not welcomed in your life and your home they still come around and have the nerve to refuse to leave, it is simply amazing to me and worse than pathetic. This is always evidence to me of just how insecure and needy THEY are. The truth is we are not the insecure needy ones, they are. Who tries to insinuate themselves into a person’s life who clearly does not want them around, I swear these people make me sick.
You are so lucky to be in the financial position that you are in, that at least gives you better options than most .I hope that you at this point have been able to completely remove him from your life since your last post and are doing well.
My fiance was going to be the perfect husband, he was polite, didn’t like anyone swearing in my presence, would stay up chatting in front of the fire agreeing with everything I said, I was so in love. He kept pushing for the date to be pushed forward a year and I agreed, I couldn’t wait to be together forever, my perfect man.
It was the wedding from hell, no, the tv show is pale in comparison, this really WAS the wedding from hell. We had asked for no children as my friends had lots of little toddlers and I could see it becoming a nursery with children running around so to be fair we just said no children, he agreed. We arrived at the church and his sister had brought her two toddlers. My fears turned into reality, sitting right behind us it turned into a fiasco, my husband swearing in front of everyone, the vicar had to stop the service and offered them the chance to leave, which they did out of the wrong door, into the cupboard. It was very upsetting.
We arrived at the reception and the car hadn’t even stopped when she started hurling insults and swearing at us, I was ushered in to great the guests on my own. I should have known, but this crazy behaviour was the start of abuse from his family and abuse from my new husband. It has continued for over 25 years with me thinking I was going crazy. Always things happened, my life turned into chaos, it got more and more entwined with problems, my friends never seemed to have the pressures and stress that my life was. He was a different person, lying to me, deceiptful, blaming, put downs, it was always my fault, never a sorry, even I love you had turned into I said I loved you when I married you, if it changes I will let you know. When my friends or family came round he was a different person, charming and friendly. Gradually my parents realised what was happening and he couldn’t hide his behaviour from them anymore. He started being rude to my Dad.
In the end no-one came to see me, then I wasn’t invited anymore to get togethers, it hurt, why wasn’t I invited, it must be my fault, he kept saying I had changed him but I couldn’t work out how or why?
I went to doctors, marriage counsellors, counsellors and even a psychiatrist and they all kept taking me back to my childhood, it was my fault, I must have been brought up badly, I thought I had perfect parents, they never argued, all got along well and we were all happy when I was growing up. I spent hundreds going for sessions. Then I found out what my friends thought of him and that was why they never asked me around. I met an acquaintance who was getting divorced and she told me what her husband was like, I couldn’t believe it, her charming husband was like that, really, just like mine. I then started to read up on personality disorders, it was a book all about my husband, it was him. Why oh why didn’t any of the so -called professionals tell me? I went to them so I could make sense of all the crazy things he would do and say. I thought I was going mad it was so illogical.
So now I can’t take it anymore, he is getting worse, the drinking, the lies, his shouting and swearing and I am looking for a way out. He has made my life so entangled in money problems, debts and credit cards, he earns the money but doesn’t pay the mortgage or most of the bills but he isn’t interested in that I haven’t any money. He spends it on drink and expensive food, he won’t give me any money for shopping so he buys the food that he likes, fatty meat, expensive sauces and luxury items. I am now looking for a Solicitor that can help me. I have tried before but he even got beaten up so he could come crawling back crying and pleading that he will change. He did, for 3 months, when my time limit expired and then he went back to his old ways. If the mental health professionals can’t help then I don’t expect to come out with anything from this marriage, he will deceive them like he deceived me.
The mental health system will not help, you are correct. It isn’t their job to help you get divorced. The legal system is there for that. Take your time, research, plan, educate yourself and do this strategically and you can get the help you need. But it is imperative to make the right choices here. Talk to many lawyers, not just one or two. Do all this quietly and with information – educate yourself. This is a much stronger position than looking to therapists to assist. They are usually useless unless supportive of you. Take a look at the book Splitting by William Eddy, Esq who covers both sides in this issue. Good luck on the road ahead. You can do this! Best, Ann
Torture, I know:-) I decided to finish it tomorrow because the entry was getting long and I wanted to get to my studio. I wanted to rant about this in the post but I was trying to keep it short so thanks for doing it for me. I TOTALLY agree with you about the attitude that gallery employees get when they find out I am an artist. I completely get attitude at some of my favorite galleries in NYC and it really pains me because it means I probably won’t want to buy anything from them and I could if I wanted to. Well at least a small piece, anyway. I do buy art and I am in favor of buying it through galleries in order to support their efforts but I hate that snotty mentality that seems so common.