Divorcing a Narcissist–You Are the Enemy

Those in the midst of a divorce from a narcissist, know that all out warfare is taking place. You started with the idea of a fair settlement with all of your research and details. This was quickly rebuffed as a non-starter.

You didn’t know that your spouse has morphed you into The Enemy. He or she has never been a true partner. The narcissist is incapable of having an authentic relationship with anyone, their spouses and children in particular. You tried with all of your inner resources and ounce of strength and conviction to help this partner to change. You hoped, you cried, you prayed, you researched, you didn’t sleep—-and so much more you did to keep the marriage alive and moving forward. But you didn’t know that being with a narcissist always moves backwards for the partner. It is regressive and psychologically harmful to you.

Recognizing that you are in enemy territory is difficult if you have been married and have loved this person for a number of years–over half of your life–even longer. It is a shock and that is understandable.

You are blamed for everything. He/she is lying about you, making you appear to be crazy, immoral, a substance abuser, tramp. You name it and you are accused. Lies are spread to your friends, acquaintances, even reaching at times your work environment.

One of the first offensive moves is the lightening transformation of the spouse from being affluent, well healed, even very wealthy or uber wealthy to, in an instant, being impoverished. The “records” show that there is no money, no assets, no credit—-nothing! It is that quick. These moves have been planned and plotted for some time without your knowledge. Narcissists don’t have insight but they are exceedingly cunning and strategic, especially when it comes to material assets. They are greedy–I mean the Seven Deadly Sins–Greed.

I think of the Middle Ages and the Castles built during that time of great violence. This reminds me of the narcissistic spouse and what he/she does to protect his castle. The Moat is filled with high waters or sharp wooden barriers or both to keep enemies from approach. The drawbridge is drawn up and tightly secured; the iron gate is locked and bolted.

In the Keep at the top of the Castle the narcissist feels superior and invincible. No one can touch him. (Noblemen during the Middle Ages held large collections of precious stones-sapphires, emeralds, rubies, diamonds and gold). Today, the greedy narcissist has other instruments of tremendous value that can be whisked away with key strokes.

If your narcissistic spouse does not have monetary means, he or she has made you into The Enemy as well.

First, know that this is not true about you. It is a profound unconscious toxic projection on the part of the narcissist. You are not to blame, You are very sane. You are a fine human being. You have special talents, creativity and a unique core that belongs to you alone. Feel this deep inside and remind yourself of who you are.

Linda Martinez-Lewi, Ph.D.



7 thoughts on “Divorcing a Narcissist–You Are the Enemy”

  1. Hello,
    I’m still just jaw dropped in a stare from reading this post of yours. It feels like you wrote this about me and what I have been in for almost 2 years trying to divorce with two children. I honestly feel you know me when there are so many people family, close friends that still don’t get it, don’t have a clue what my children and I have been battling and up against. Do you have any ideas or advice on how to get this man exposed to others. He is amazing at the thing he is best at deception, lies, manipulation, charming and cunning, twist and dances around everything, creates chaos to divert issues. He has drained me well my parents out of 50,000. in attorney fees and still haven’t gotten divorced yet. He drained our joint account, he is order to pay child support but is so above all he just doesn’t pay or pays whatever he feels like he wants to. After a year of psychologically abusing our children DCFS finally found grounds to go detain the child out of his care until a future hearing. Of coarse its all my fault it has been from the start. If its not my fault then its the children s fault. In the end of a court evaluation which I still don’t know if this all will be turned onto me as the one who is coaching and steering the children which he has played from the start but has been the one who has done it to me.I never knew about PROJECTION but man is it a scary thing to live through and even more terrifying when you finally realize that he is also doing it to your children, I can go on forever and ever with all the drama and chaos he has caused and gets away with. Any help or resources, pointed in the right direction I would be most grateful for. As some days I feel so disorganized and so overwhelmed still trying to process who this man really is and how I allowed myself to be fooled for so long. I just cant get over this post its so hard to describe to outsiders what is taking place and you just did it like nothing..
    Thank you,

  2. Comment:
    Hi Laura. I can certainly sympathize with your situation. I am only six months into my divorce from a man I was married to for 22 years. I have three children my oldest having autism. My children have been abused by him as well, but they don’t understand. I’m not sure how they get away with things but they do. I had to move 500 miles away to be free of him. Fortunately I have family to support me. I have HOURS AND HOURS of taped phone conversations between him and my kids doing nothing but bad mouthing me and my family and cursing his brains out. 2 1/2 hours s night. He left my children out of their minds after each one. He hasn’t had contact with them since 12/4. During that conversation he told my 12 year old son and 9 year old daughter to tell me to kill myself.

  3. Comment:From Lori
    I am in the same position,however mine has gone on for 32 years. Neither one has filed yet as he has all the money. Everything is always my fault,because I don’t trust him and I do stupid things like check if he is where he says he is. I have been lied to so much in the past that it has made me unable to trust anyone. I don’t know what to do anymore,and I have absolutely no support system. I have been with this man since I was 17 years old.

  4. Comment:From CSL
    That describes my life with a NPD spouse precisely. Wow. It is so unbelievable how these people prosper in today’s culture.
    Thank you Linda!

  5. Comment:
    Laura ..i feel the same..its like a jigsaw that all fits…I have been battling in court for 7 yrs and im financially and mentally wiped out.Last friday i started representing myself as im getting more in debt with legal fees. We have a 5 day hearing coming up and im mentally challanged because of panic attacks and ansiexty is debilitateting.I have contemplated suiicide as a way of ending this nightmare.Our children have huge university debts and yet we have both spent all this money on legals.I wanted to keep my property to hand to my children as i dont think their father will be generous with his or he uses money to taunt …yet he is so generous to others.He charms all those around him and paints me as a bad person so after leaving him i became socially withdrawn and dont see my friends.The courts allow him an avenue to abuse me financially and emotionally.

  6. Comment: From Beth
    I think I am the victim of a narcissistic boyfriend for 17 years. Nothing is in my name. I paid the taxes of 3000 dollars 7 weeks ago. Ripped apart most of the years we were together. As my son got older, he ripped him apart too. Many of the things mentioned are exactly my boyfriend. He never married me. Now I know why. Recently, he has kicked me out for no reason. I am suddenly not what he wants. I was shocked. He threatened to shut off the electric, throw my things out, and even get an eviction notice. I was going to move in with his mom. But strangely he beat me to it. Although his mom said, he rarely sleeps there. It’s been 9 days now, and I am scared of what he might do. It’s like he is trying to ruin my life. I am shocked and relieved at what I learned on this website. It sounds just like him. I also think he has another woman on the side, and is putting a barrier between me and his mom. Like controlling things. I don’t understand out of 17 years, how unemotional he is, and how destructive he is with my well being and my life. I have no money to go anywhere else. I am scared of his actions, and emotions. How can a person be so cruel. I am not afraid of him physically. Just how he could destroy my life, and emotionally. Everyday, I just don’t know what to expect. I don’t know what to do. I am glad he is not staying at the house though. It gave me time to find this website. Although I feel like I’m in shock, and in a traumatic event I was not prepared for!

  7. Comment: From TC
    I am stunned by this post.
    On April 16th, I filed for divorce after 7 years of marriage. Looking back I see so many red flags. I also see where my husband is a predator of vulnerable people. It’s seldom he freely surrounds himself with people he perceives as more successful, instead “those people” are losers, etc.
    over the last 6 weeks he has made every attempt to sabotage my life, including accusations that I contribute drugs and alcohol to children. He has gone so far as to calling men I work directly and indirectly with to “research” his delusional list of people I’m sleeping with. In just 6 weeks he has managed to hire and fire two attorneys and now retained a 3rd attorney. Thank God we have no children together. I’ve always pondered if he is bi-polar because of the outrageous mood swings but after reading this I truly believe this man is a complete narcissist and that scares the hell out of me. I’ve already taken measures towards recovering from this roller coaster ride. Although I know his actions have nothing to do with me I feel like a vampire has come down and sucked the life out of me.

Comments are closed.