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Divorcing a narcissist? 4 tips for New Yorkers

Divorcing New Yorkers already have a lot on their plates, but when the other spouse is a narcissist, it adds even more complexity to a situation already fraught with stress. Below are four important tips to consider when divorcing a narcissist.

-- Seek legal representation from counsel that fully understands the gravity of your situation. Narcissists behave badly even in the best of circumstances; divorce really brings out their claws. Your attorney should factor this in to their strategies and plan accordingly, such as petitioning the court for restraining orders.

-- Keep interactions with the narcissistic spouse to a bare minimum, such as when dropping off or picking up the children. If the narcissist uses the occasions to manipulate or belittle you, consider designating a neutral party to make the swap.

-- Prepare financially ahead of time by assuring yourself access to funds. Open a separate bank account while still married and make some deposits. Take out a credit card in only your name. Make copies of all financial records, insurance policies and tax documents.

-- Document every single destructive, illegal, immoral and unethical action committed by the narcissist. New York is a state that still allows at-fault divorces; having documentation can help establish a pattern of behavior that could affect the outcome of the divorce terms as well as any custody matters. It may be necessary to have a parenting evaluation submitted to the court. Your attorney should ask for this at the outset because it can take months to complete.

Make sure that you work closely with your family law attorney to make sure that he or she is aware of all ongoing issues involving your narcissistic spouse while your divorce case is pending.

Source:, "Divorcing A Narcissist 4 Tips For Leaving Successfully" Gen Wright, accessed Jan. 13, 2015

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