As a divorce attorney and psychologically-trained mediator I uniquely guide
couples, especially those with behavioral problems, towards dignified divorces.
Many of the couples I work with complain that narcissism is an unhealthy
third party in their relationship. Some of them don’t even now what
the unhealthy behavior is until they work with me, and I identify the
controlling/lack of empathy behavior as narcissism.
All of us have a little healthy narcissism. But at the other end of the
spectrum narcissism becomes a personality disorder. In Greek mythology,
Narcissus admired his image in a pond, doing nothing else, until he died
as a result.
When a client asks me the characteristics of a narcissist, I tell them,
some of them are as follows:
- An exaggerated sense of self-importance;
- A lack of empathy;
- The use of charm to manipulate others;
- Holding grudges;
- Blaming everyone else if something goes wrong;
- Controlling others.
Often, I only need to hear a few sentences before I realize my client may
be married to a narcissist. My medical training and experience helps me
identify this behavior and successfully guide a couple towards a divorce.
Many spouses hope the other will change. This is not unusual.
Often the victimized spouse still loves the narcissistic spouse even though
they have been worn down by criticism, and other destructive behaviors.
The victimized spouse often wonders endlessly about how a once beautiful
relationship could turn into abuse and gas lighting. Clients tell me they
feel embarrassed and ashamed to be part of such a relationship.
That was the case with Tara, an educated mom of two married to a commodities
trader who never allowed her to have any knowledge of their finances or
investments. Keeping her in the dark was such a priority, her husband
would have her sign a tax return and not allow her to read it. She thought
he had a retirement plan, and some other major investments but no concrete
evidence since he kept all their investment statements in his office and
on his computer. When she would ask questions about their finances he
would tell her it was none of her business. When she complained he was
dismissive, he told her she was stupid, and it was her fault.
At home he was emotionally distant and psychologically abusive. In public
he was charming and attentive. It was as if he were two people.
Tara suspected he was living a double life. She did some digging and discovered
he had 2 cell phones and an apartment in SoHo. She later learned he was
living with the family’s nanny whom she had fired 7 months earlier.
Upon learning he was cheating Tara came to see me. She told him she wanted
a divorce. He didn’t believe her. She suggested marriage counseling,
he said,”No!” He kept telling her she was “imagining
I encouraged her to leave this destructive marriage, but I could see how
conflicted she was. She started defending some of his behaviors which
is not unusual for someone who has been emotionally abused.
Once she gained some strength and knowledge during our sessions, and she
saw he was not going to change, we began to move the divorce process forward.
Her husband left his computer in their home office unattended one day
and she was able to go online and access their financial and property
documents. Now that we had a solid financial picture, proving there were
significant assets, I was able to get her the financial support and division
of property she rightfully deserved as part of her divorce.
If this story speaks to you, call me.
I have the skills and experience to help move you away from a destructive marriage.
During this medical crisis our
FREE 1 HOUR CONSULTATIONS will be conducted virtually by telephone or TeleDivorce by Skype or FaceTime
to reduce risk and maintain safety for everyone!
Call now to book your free consultation 212.734.1551.
I look forward to working with you!
Stay Healthy & Safe!