You have been married to a narcissist for three years, ten years, twenty years or more You have done everything to make it work. The harder you try the greater his reprisals and betrayals. You are weary, bordering on becoming chronically depressed and anxious over this non-relationship. After a last blow up and cruel projection by him, a false accusation that cuts through you—it is reckoning time. You have decided to divorce your narcissistic spouse.
As you prepare by obtaining the finest attorney you can—highly knowledgeable in family law, savvy about human nature, intellectually tough but well contained and highly articulate, you will benefit by learning the art and skill of emotional detachment.
Begin by knowing that most of what this person says to you is a projection coming from his unconscious. It is evidence of his self hatred. This is ejected on to you. Learn not to take it in by practicing ways to stay in the part of the nervous system that is calming. While he is running about in fight or flight, jarring your nervous system and scrambling your mind, you can practice each day how to stay centered. This is a definite skill and you will become accomplished. There are many avenues to this goal. One is meditation. Make this simple. Take a few minutes each day to sit in quiet where you will not be interrupted. Take several breaths through the nose. Inhale for a few seconds (do what is comfortable to you) hold briefly at the top of the breath, then exhale through the nose. The exhalation is calming so make it a little longer. Do any type of exercise that works for you. Be as consistent as you can. This quiets the nervous system. Then observe your breath as it naturally moves in at the tip of the nostrils and out. If calming music helps you with this process, listen as you meditate. Take a few minutes each day to write down your thoughts and feelings as they spontaneously flow. Writing is a mysterious process–let it go and become itself without any editing on your part. This process is both creative and helps you to distance yourself from the narcissist. Do not engage him unless you have to. Keep interchanges neutral as much as you can. For support go to a couple of friends whom you trust and care about you.
Do not share any of your plans with this person. He will use them against you. This provides greater psychological distance from the narcissistic spouse. If he goes into his screaming act, picture a two year old in tantrum mode who isn’t getting exactly what he wants. Metaphorically—leave him on the floor having one of his fits of rage. You disown this behavior. It is not about you. Be patient and loving with yourself.
I hear good news from the divorce front from women and men who have learned to detach, divorce and free themselves up to lead their own lives. Wishing you all the best. To learn about the narcissistic personality in-depth, visit my website:thenarcissistinyourlife.com
Linda Martinez-Lewi, Ph.D.
Telephone Consultation: United States and International
Book: Freeing Yourself from the Narcissist in Your Life