Child custody is a difficult situation for many parents. The challenges that come with this aspect of a divorce become even more complex if one parent is a narcissist. The hallmark signs of a narcissist are that they have a highly enhanced sense of self-worth and aren’t capable of thinking about how their actions affect others. They think they are somehow special and that everyone should do their bidding.
Mediation with a narcissist
When you’re trying to come up with the terms of a child custody agreement, the narcissist will want their own way. They aren’t likely going to be willing to negotiate at all, which can make it especially difficult to work out the terms in a process like mediation. You may still be required to go through mediation, so remember these tips during the process.
- Ask to be in a separate room from your ex with the mediator going back and forth between you to work out the terms.
- Keep control of your feelings so that you aren’t giving the narcissist power from your reactions.
- Document everything related to the child custody case so you have tangible proof of what’s happening.
- Always do what’s best for the children, even if this means that you have to concede something to your ex or you have to fight against terms your ex is seeking.
Remember that the less you engage with a narcissist, the less of a chance there is that you will get upset and react to them.
What happens if mediation doesn’t work?
If the terms of the parenting plan can’t be set during mediation, you’ll most likely be headed toward a trial. Your attorney can help you to learn your options. In some cases, mental health evaluations are necessary, so be sure to be prepared for this. Alert your attorney to the fact that your ex is narcissistic so they can work to address the issues that might come up due to this.