Fighting for custody over your kids can be difficult even in the best of circumstances. When a divorce involves a narcissistic parent, the process of determining child custody can become even more nuanced. While each child-sharing plan is unique, any arrangement involving a narcissist will require specialized components to try and mitigate potential issues associated with this type of personality disorder.
Understanding how to approach child custody negotiations with a narcissist may require additional research and preparation on your part. One of the biggest challenges of battling for custody with a high conflict personality is that they often do not play fair.
There are a handful of tactics that a narcissist may try to employ in or out of court to manipulate the situation in their favor. With this type of personality disorder, a narcissist believes that they are always right and that they are the best fit for child custody, when in reality they may not be the best parent to your children.
If you have to go through a Georgia child custody battle with a narcissist or other high conflict personality, consider connecting with an experienced legal advocate from our team.
One of the first things a narcissistic parent will try to do during a child custody battle is paint themselves in a positive light – likely better than they deserve. We recommend documenting and recording any instances of abusive behavior that you witness or experience to show the truth about your ex’s capacity to care for minor children.
Keep in mind that it is not your job to diagnose your ex-partner or toxic family member. In fact, doing so could backfire and make you appear slanderous or judgmental. Instead, record any of the troubling behavior they exhibit, present it to the court, and allow a judge to draw their own conclusions about how that behavior may affect your kids. When a family court sees the evidence, your spouse may not be able to skew the situation in their favor.
The goal of Georgia child custody negotiations is to determine which parent is best suited to take care of their children. The amount of time a child spends with either parent as well has who will be awarded final decision-making authority depend on both parents’ caring capacities and the resources to which they have access (i.e. income, assets, and other funds). If you and your high-conflict ex are in similar financial situations, they may try to sabotage your friendships and family ties to prevent you from receiving support.
A great way to limit the ammunition a narcissistic parent has against you is to cut off contact with them whenever possible. An ended relationship and subsequent child custody battle can trigger aggression, narcissistic rage, and other negative traits common in high-conflict personalities. Limiting the amount of contact you have with your ex gives them less information to divulge in poor taste to your friends and family.
It can be difficult to protect your loved ones from something they do not know about or understand. For this reason, it’s also wise to discuss your situation with loved ones ahead of time and explain the high-conflict nature of your ex-partner’s personality disorder. Having a conversation about how your narcissistic ex may lash out can improve your ability to anticipate and protect against their aggression.
If a narcissistic parent is unable to affect the situation or those around you, then their last attempt at control may be to get you to stoop to their level. Narcissists are skilled at pulling people into conflict by eliciting reactionary or emotional responses. It is therefore important to keep a level head and avoid any arguments or emotional conversations with a high-conflict ex.
Treat every interaction or conversation like it’s being recorded for later use in court, because chances are that it will be. If you keep a cool head, you can avoid giving your narcissistic ex-partner any leverage against you. If an amicable agreement cannot be reached in your child custody battle with a narcissist, it may be best to leave the mediation to the lawyers. The last thing you want to do is explode on them and give them a reason to ask for more time with your kids. So, instead, keep calm and try to avoid them as much as possible.
Negotiating for child custody can be difficult. If you are facing a narcissist custody evaluation, the process can become even more overwhelming, and you may feel helpless at times.
During this frustrating time, it’s important to remember that you are not alone. You can build a supportive network of friends, family, and loved ones to ensure that this process goes as smoothly as possible. It may also be beneficial for you to enlist the help of our compassionate team members who have gone through this process before and can be by your side throughout your case.
At the Atlanta Divorce Law Group, our team has experienced many cases involving difficult personalities. We understand the frustration and anger that can arise when an ex-partner tries to lie or deceive the courts, especially when it involves your child and parental rights.
Our attorneys are trained to recognize the common tactics a narcissist uses during a Georgia custody battle, so let us apply our experience to your unique case and pursue the justice you and your children deserve. Call our intake team today to learn more about what we can do for you.