Category Archives: Early Stages and Determined

In early stages of divorce and while upset and struggling also determined to move forward, learn and create a better future.

Divorcing a Narcissist

Divorcing a Narcissist

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Divorcing a Narcissist and Winning

While divorce is inherently overwhelming and emotionally challenging, those of us who are faced with divorcing a narcissist experienced a heightened level of fear and frustration.  By the mere definition of a narcissistic, self-absorbed, self-obsessed, self-centered, it is impossible to engage in a dialogue where both parties needs are heard and acknowledged.

I am divorced from a narcissist.  Often our ‘conversations’ are simply me listening to his monologue. His ability to dialogue, to hear my perspective and consider it is severely limited by his narcissistic personality disorder.  The other challenge is because their perspective is the only one they are capable of  seeing, they are 100% sure and confident that they are right.  A healthier person considers the other perspective and as a result might question and adjust their own.

An understandable question is how to divorce a narcissist and win when the narcissist is wired to need to win and often will fight to the detriment of the children and finances.  They may even feel like the victim throughout the process, again due to their single minded belief that their needs and opinions are right and are all that matter. They also see your concerns as unfair criticism and are unable to look at the possibility that they are part of the problem.  

So what can you do if you are divorcing a narcissist?

First, it is vital that you have a healthy sounding board.  You most likely have ‘lost yourself’ amidst your spouse’s certainty that s/he is right and you are wrong.  You also need to look at your ability to set boundaries…and uphold them as most narcissists are boundary oblivious.  Finally, you are well served to notice your own behavior.  

  • Are you surprised or angered each time he or she does not acknowledge your perspective or needs? 
  • How long has this been going on for?  
  • And why would you expect them to behave differently now?  

I am speaking about acceptance.  When you accept that a narcissist cannot and will not see your perspective (because that is how they are wired) you stop trying to shove a round peg into a square hole. By accepting the limitations of your narcissistic spouse, you free yourself to find new solutions.  He or she will continue to behave the same way.  

When divorcing a narcissist, notice your insanity…doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.

It is up to you to change the dance you have been engaging with your spouse.

One thing I changed was I began to hang up on my ex (after numerous warnings that I have to do).  It stills feels bad.  However, I know that if I don’t I will be kept on the phone for hours.  It is my responsibility to set my boundaries and to uphold them.  

  • Where are you still feeling like the victim of your narcissistic ex?  
  • What is your role in your frustration?  

Find new ways of behaving to minimize the pain of divorcing a narcissist.

Finally, for those who feel deeply victimized by the narcissist, a shift in perspective is valuable.  Your narcissistic ex did not ask to be born with this personality disorder.  There is no talk therapy nor pharmaceutical drugs that can help him or her heal from this disorder.  When I learned this, I found my way to have compassion for my narcissistic ex.  It took a long time and it feels great to be rid of my ‘I am a victim of him’ mentality.  He must live with this disorder for the rest of his life and all the damage it does to his relationships.  I on the other hand, am healthy and free. He is my teacher, my Buddha, my Cross and I get to work on my patience, compassion, acceptance, expectations and boundaries  regularly because we will be connected for the rest of our lives through our children.  I no longer hate.  I no longer hurt. I am at peace.

You have a choice about how the rest of your life will be impacted by your narcissistic ex. Create a healthy support network, join a community of peers today.


Karen McMahon, Journey Beyond Divorce Founder

KM1 3_16Our team of coaches at JBD is passionate about helping men and women navigate the emotional difficulties of relationships, breakups and divorce. We work together with you to open the possibility that your current relationship challenges can lead to a rewarding voyage of self-discovery and an immensely more pleasing life experience. Together we create a path to clarity. Find out if Coaching is right for you, and accept my gift of one FREE session.

10 things to consider before filing

10 Things to Consider Before Filing for Divorce

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By Lisa Brick


Ask yourself: Are you doing this?

Fast food, online shopping, and even drive-through weddings. It’s becoming easier and faster to do almost anything in the world today. Unfortunately, our quick and easy culture does not yet apply to divorce. The divorce process is still a long, difficult road.  But if it is the right decision for you, there are ways to make the journey easier. As with any major decision, there are things to prepare before you begin. You will be dealing with confusing emotions while trying to make decisions that will affect you for years to come.  Preparation is key.

You need to be mentally and financially prepared for new living arrangements, new daily routines, and all kinds of decisions about property and money. Continue reading

calm within the storm of divorce

The Calm Within the Storm of Divorce

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By Lisa Brick


“It’s not what happens to you, but how you react to it that matters.
When something happens, the only thing in your power is your attitude toward it;
you can either accept it or resent it”
– 
Epictetus, 55-135 AD

Present Moment Awareness is not some airy fairy New Age practice.  It is the eye of and the path to sanity during the hurricane of divorce.   Continue reading

Judgement Vs Discernment

An Effective Alternative to Judgement During Divorce

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By Karen McMahon


I often coach my clients around the impact that being judgmental has on them, the people they interact with and their circumstances.  I invite them to be discerning rather than judgmental and have found that there is significant confusion around these two words, what they mean and what the difference is.

If you look up judgement and discernment in some dictionaries, you may read the exact same definition, so the confusion makes sense.  My intention is that this article brings clarity to the topic. Here are some definitions to get us started:

Judgmental:  Being censorious or critical; having or displaying an overly critical point of view.

Discerning: Having or revealing keen insight and good judgement; being judicious, wise, prudent or circumspect. Continue reading

Truest Voice

The Truest Voice You Can Listen to During Divorce

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By Karen McMahon


The intuitive mind is a sacred gift and the rational mind is a faithful servant.
We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift.
~ Albert Einstein.

  • I was thinking about calling my brother. The phone rang.  It was my brother, an unusual time for him to be reaching out to me.    
  • I was struggling to find a solution to a problem.  I was considering and considering yet nothing was coming.  I decided to leave it be and attend to something else. Suddenly the answer popped into my head.
  • I had an intense reaction to someone I saw in a store, the hair on the back of my neck went up and my entire body went into a fight or flight reaction.  I left immediately to find out later that he held up the shop owner by gunpoint.

Continue reading

Divorce Lifestyle Considerations

Divorce Lifestyle Considerations

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Guest Article By Aviva Pinto, CDFA™, Director, Bronfman E.L. Rothschild


Determining Where to File for Divorce

In most situations, you will file for a divorce in the state in which you and/or your spouse live. If you and your spouse own property in different states or you live apart, you might be able to select the state in which to file. In those situations, you and your attorney should evaluate the respective states’ divorce laws to determine the best choice. Among the items to consider are the length of time it will take to grant a divorce, the age of majority used in determining how long a parent is required to pay child support (for some states it is 18 and others it is 21), and filing and procedural rules, which can vary significantly. Continue reading

Financial Stress Coping

Divorce After 50 – Financial Mistakes to Avoid

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By Aviva Pinto, CDFA™, Director, Bronfman E.L. Rothschild


Divorce is a reality for a growing number of aging couples, a phenomenon commonly referred to as “gray divorce”. According to a 2013 study at Bowling Green State University, the divorce rate among adults ages 50 and older doubled between 1990 and 2010. Now, one in four Americans getting divorced is 50 or older. Continue reading

Authentic Find Authenticity

Find Your Authenticity: To Thine Own Self Be True

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By Karen Basmagy


One of the wonderful things about my career choice is witnessing clients becoming more authentically themselves, usually after periods of great pain, loss and change. They come to the coaching relationship “stuck” and without a real sense of direction or plan, or feel consumed by their emotions.  Within a very short time, they are moving themselves forward, creating a vision and taking steps towards creating a new reality for themselves.
 
For many, it is the first time in their adult lives that they are truly exploring what makes them happy, what gives them joy, and where they have compromised their values or perhaps lost parts of themselves along life’s path. Continue reading

Faith & Surrender: An Invaluable Practice During Divorce

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By Karen McMahon


 

This article is not about religious beliefs, it is about a spiritual light in the darkness of the unknown.  It is about the practice of Faith and Surrender.

 

“None of us knows what might happen even the next minute, yet still we go forward. Because we trust. Because we have Faith.”

― Paulo Coelho, Brida

Continue reading

Strengthening your financial position: Part II – Post divorce

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Guest Post by AVIVA PINTO, CDFA™


Part II of this 2 part series.  Click here for Part I

 

After you’ve separated your financial lives, work carefully with your financial advisor to focus on planning your future.

Savings Goals

Determine how your post-divorce financial situation affects your ability to save for goals such as college or retirement and whether you will need to revise your expectations. We recommend creating a plan to maximize your savings.

 

Investment Strategy

You and your advisor can evaluate your investment allocations to make sure they are appropriate for your risk tolerance and your time horizon. An advisor can help you focus on rebuilding your assets while remaining cognizant of fees. Continue reading