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Divorce: Is Your Ex A High-Conflict Personality?

do you have a high conflict ex?While most people exhibit some irrational or unpleasant behavior during the pressure cooker of divorce, people with high-conflict personalities are experts at creating drama and chaos. They respond to the grief of a failed marriage by blaming you for the divorce and any problems the kids might have. Because they need a target, they will probably not “get over it” in time. Wondering if your ex might be a high-conflict personality or whether you are in a high conflict divorce?  Take this yes/no quiz to find out. Read more

10 Surefire Ways To Have An Apocalyptic Divorce

are you caught in an apocalyptic divorce? Can you really get divorced without the conflict and drama? Yes! Here are the top 10 things NOT to do if you want to avoid an apocalyptic divorce. To help minimize tension don’t… Read more

Kids, Divorce, And Manipulation: Parents Who Use Kids As Weapons

high conflict divorce and kidsIn divorce, narcissistic parents often buffer the pain of a failed marriage by trying to destroy their ex’s relationship with the children. Unlike healthy parents, who aim to work themselves out of a job by preparing children to live independently, a narcissist sees their kids as extensions of themselves. They cannot tolerate the thought that their children might grow up to chart their own course. Read more

How to Prepare for a Contested Divorce: 4 Key Steps

help for contested divorce issuesYou or your spouse has filed for divorce. In an ideal world, the two of you would be able to sit down and work out all of your issues together, without having a contentious divorce. However, that is not the case for many divorcing couples and you may find yourself in what is called a “contested” divorce. Perhaps you cannot agree upon a custody arrangement or how to divide your marital assets. If you find yourself about to engage in a contested divorce action, it is critical to begin to prepare for the divorce as soon as possible. Read more

High Conflict Divorce: 5 Things Your Therapist Can Do To Help

working with therapist in high conflict divorceThe goal of traditional talk therapy is to help clients live and express themselves authentically. When divorcing a high-conflict personality (HCP), however, you need to learn how to be strategic in communicating with your spouse. A therapist who understands how to work with high-conflict divorce can give you the tools to manage your life when your ex is trying to make it unmanageable. Some of these include…  Read more

Putting Narcissism & Divorce into Perspective: Negotiate with Caution

divorcing a narcisst In a couple of recent posts, we discussed what it can be like to go through a divorce from a narcissist. In “Divorcing a Narcissist: 5 Steps to Protect Yourself” we talked about how your narcissistic soon-to-be-ex-spouse might blame you for everything and try to control every aspect of the divorce—including your post-divorce life. In “Divorcing A Narcissist: 5 Strategies For Getting Through It” we offered some tips for defusing high conflict interactions with an ex who feeds on conflict and will stop at nothing in trying to gain the upper hand.

If you’ve been reading all of this and you recognize your own ex in our descriptions, you might be feeling more than a little bit discouraged and intimidated. Perhaps you were hoping for a low conflict divorce, were considering mediation, or at least hoped to settle some of your issues out of court. If your ex is so self-centered that seeing anyone else’s side is out of the question, how can you possibly proceed?

Well, take a deep breath and a step back while we take a closer look at some of these issues: Read more

Divorcing A Narcissist: 5 Strategies For Getting Through It

getting through divorce from a narcissist

One of the most overwhelming things about going through a divorce is trying to wade through all the information about how to do it the “right” way and decide what’s right for you. Well-meaning friends and family may give you advice that tends to apply to someone with a reasonable ex. But what if you don’t have one of those? When you have a spouse who tends to be a narcissist, it can mean that you may in for additional stress or all-out war in your divorce…unless you learn how to defuse this high conflict personality type. What works to keep tension in check? Here are five strategies to help you get through your divorce from a narcissist with your sanity intact. Read more

8 Ways To Protect Your Kids From The Fall-Out Of A High-Conflict Divorce

divorce parenting

Studies show that it’s not divorce in itself that hurts kids in the long-term; it’s the level conflict that lingers between parents. Being successful at the job of being a divorced parent requires finding ways to deal with any contempt for or anger towards your ex, and support your children’s relationship with their other parent. If your former spouse cheated on you or walked out on you for any number of reasons, you may still be in bad place of deep hurt. However, unless your child’s other parent is abusive or there is a legitimate issue that renders your former spouse unable to parent (a mental illness or substance abuse issue that impairs their daily functioning), learning how to manage your feelings about him or her so they don’t bleed over onto your kids is a co-parenting must. Read on for some helpful tips on how to get yourself to a better place. Read more

7 Ways To Stay Calm During Divorce Disagreements

How to Stay Calm During Divorce Disagreements

Telling someone who is undergoing a divorce — especially one that involves a custody dispute — to stay calm will generally evoke an “easy for you to say” response, perhaps with a few choice invectives thrown in for effect. Of course it’s preferable to stay calm; but how does one do that, exactly? How do you take the high road when your former spouse bad-mouths you, tries to turn your kids against you, gouges you financially, withholds child support, or in extreme cases, is physically violent? Read more

How Do You Know It’s Time To See A Divorce Therapist?

divorce therapist

Not everyone who goes through a divorce will need a therapist. If you don’t share property and children, and you are emotionally resolved about your decision, you may not feel the need for extra support. If you do have children and/or own property together, however, divorce can feel apocalyptic. You may fear losing your home, your financial security, and time with your kids. You may feel unable to keep your fury towards your spouse in check, or you may have sunk into a state of depression. Sound familiar? Here are some signs it may be time to see a therapist who specializes in easing people through divorce transitions. Read more