Narcissists live strictly for themselves. They bring individuals into their lives–spouses, ex-spouses, children, siblings, friends, business associates, to play “roles” that build and enhance their grandiose images and masks of their ubiquitous false selves. Narcissists are disingenuous, incapable of being true, real or authentic.
Narcissists create chaos, pain and destruction wherever they go. Those who have grown up as children of a narcissistic mother or father, know this story too well. I hear from so many of these children and the tales are hair-raising. Children are emotionally and psychologically neglected, treated like dirt or in the other extreme–chosen as perfect living replicas of themselves–These are the golden children who are picked from the rest of the pack for their physical beauty or handsomeness, intellectual brightness, athletic potential, social graces–they embellish the narcissist’ self-image. On the opposite end are the children who are treated with derision and scorn, those who are beaten verbally or physically, neglected and cast out as “inferior” from the day they were born. They are the outcasts, the prodigals, the wretched ones of the family. The narcissistic parent has no problem inflicting severe levels of pain since he/she doesn’t have a conscience and no capacity for empathy, compassion or guilt.
During the sickening lengthy divorce battles, narcissists are particularly nasty. They fear that they won’t get everything to which they are entitled. They expect to win over the opposing spouse and if this involves devastating the lives of their children and other family members, this is of no consequence to them. They are in a no-prisoners mode, nothing is going to stop them; they are heavily lawyered up and hell-bent to take everything in reach, even if they are not legally entitled to it. It is important in circumstances like this that the non-narcissist spouse is well prepared with a good lawyer of their own, such as Diamond & Diamond (https://diamondlaw.ca/family-lawyers), for example. It can be a very difficult time and the spouse of a narcissist might find the ordeal too painful and want to give in to the narcissist, but with a good lawyer, the chances of this are slimmer. Custody battles are particularly nasty. Narcissists often drag them out over many years to wear the other party down, manipulate the children to their side and attempt to destroy any positive relationship with the other parent. They play games with the children, ensuring them that they are the good parent, can and will provide the kids with whatever they want and need. This puts the children in a severe psychological bind as they are whipsawed between one parent and the other. Eventually, the formal divorce comes to an end but not without enormous emotional and psychological fallout.
If you are the child of a narcissist, married to or divorcing a narcissist or have any relationship with one of these toxic individuals, your greatest asset is the power of knowledge. The more that you understand the narcissistic personality in-depth, stop blaming yourself for all of the damage and destruction he has caused and learn to appreciate your real self deeply, the sooner you will begin to heal and move forward with the life that you have always deserved.