Divorcing a Narcissist in Sandy Springs

Divorce is stressful in the best of circumstances. Unfortunately, it can be much more complicated when your spouse has narcissistic personality traits.

When your spouse is manipulative, needs control, demands attention, and creates drama, a divorce is a threat to their self-image. If you end the marriage, they will no longer have power over you, and a narcissist will engage in a range of shady tactics to maintain their power.

In this situation, working with an aggressive attorney skilled in divorce litigation is essential. Although almost everyone hopes their divorce will be civil and amicable, divorcing a narcissist in Sandy Springs almost always means you will be battling it out in court.

How Narcissism Affects the Divorce Process

Couples who can agree on property division, alimony, and child custody issues can file for an uncontested divorce. The process is much quicker, less expensive, and less stressful than a contested divorce. Unfortunately, someone with narcissistic tendencies is unable to engage in fair negotiations, making an uncontested divorce highly unlikely.

Instead, you will file for a contested divorce. The court will order you and your spouse to provide a comprehensive financial disclosure, and your narcissistic spouse might delay, provide incomplete documentation, or try to hide assets. Your divorce team may engage a forensic accountant to ensure your spouse’s disclosure is accurate.

The divorce process requires periodic status conferences where a court officer tries to help you reach an agreement. A narcissistic spouse might be a no-show at these conferences or attend but refuse to engage in negotiations. Sometimes, a narcissistic spouse will agree to something at a status conference and renege within a few hours or days. It is critical to work with a Sandy Springs attorney who can both take this behavior in stride and hold the narcissistic spouse accountable for it.

How Narcissism Can Impact the Divorce Settlement

A narcissist will often try to hijack divorce proceedings to feed their ego or stoke their sense of grievance, but that behavior can have consequences. When a couple has a litigated divorce, a judge makes decisions on relevant issues after a trial, and a narcissist’s behavior during the proceedings can have an impact on the judge’s decisions.

For example, if the narcissistic spouse was not prompt or transparent in their financial disclosure, a judge could award the other spouse a larger share of the marital property. When the narcissistic spouse tries to turn the children against the other spouse, a judge could rightly see that behavior as damaging to the children and award the innocent spouse primary custody.

An experienced Sandy Springs divorce attorney can ensure the judge is aware of the narcissistic spouse’s bad conduct throughout the proceedings. The Official Code of Georgia §19-6-2 allows a family court to order one spouse to pay the other’s attorney’s fees at the judge’s discretion. Documented attempts to prolong and disrupt the process could persuade a judge that the narcissistic spouse should pay for their behavior.

How to Prepare to Divorce a Narcissist

No matter how badly you want a smooth, friendly divorce for the sake of your children and yourself, you are unlikely to get one when your spouse has narcissistic tendencies. They will use any tactic available to manipulate you. It is critical for you to stay focused on your goals and not allow the narcissist to force you to cave to their demands. Allow your Fulton County narcissistic divorce attorney to help empower you to demand what you deserve in the divorce.

If the narcissist controls the money in your household, they may try to cut you off as a pressure tactic. Your attorney can get a court order requiring the narcissist to release funds to you, but the situation will be less stressful if you can pay your bills in the meantime. Try to put money aside before you file for divorce, or speak with family and friends about whether they can offer financial assistance.

Surround yourself with a good support system. If you have friends and family you can trust, confide in them, and ask them for help during the divorce. If you do not already have a therapist, finding one now is a good idea. Make sure there are people in your life who can care for the children for an afternoon or overnight when you need a break or must work on divorce-related issues.

Work With a Sandy Springs Attorney When Divorcing a Narcissistic Spouse

A divorce from a narcissist often involves a court fight. It is not in a narcissist’s nature to back down or work cooperatively, even when it is clearly to their benefit to do so.

Work with a family law firm that is comfortable with court battles when divorcing a narcissist in Sandy Springs. At the Atlanta Divorce Law Group, our team can counter the narcissist’s tactics and ensure you meet your goals in the divorce. We offer consultations, so reach out to a team member to learn more. Get in touch today.

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