How To Tell A Narcissist You Want A Divorce

Last updated by Katie M.

If you are currently married to a narcissist and no longer want to continue your relationship, you may feel overwhelmed and no doubt a little trapped. Let’s face it, breaking up with someone is never simple, but the task is certainly even tougher when your spouse is a narcissist and is used to controlling you. Turning the tables on him and asking for a divorce will definitely throw him off track, but it is an essential step in you getting your freedom back, as well as reconnecting with the ‘old you’. It’s about time you started writing your new chapter, don’t you think? Find out how to get through this difficult time and how to break the news to him.

How To Tell A Narcissist You Want A Divorce

As in many cases, you probably didn’t realize that your ex was a raging abuser when you first got together. You no doubt believed he was just protective, worried about your safety, and wanted to be involved every step of the way because he loved you so much. And hey, those qualities may have even fueled your desire for him at first; after all, there’s no crime in that. But, fast-forward however many years later, and your husband has likely become unbearable, overly controlling, manipulative, and even violent. If this rings a bell, and you’ve decided that enough is enough, here’s what you need to do to ask him for a divorce. No matter what your situation is; if you have children together, or a mortgage, know that there is always a way out and that you don’t deserve to suffer anymore.

>>> Discover the 10 most common reasons for divorce

5 Steps towards telling your narcissistic husband you want a divorce

Follow these tips to prepare yourself for the next stage of your life.

1) Develop a steely mindset first

Starting a divorce process with anyone can be taxing, but people with narcissistic personality disorders aren’t just your average Joe’s, and definitely have what it takes to plunge you into hell along the way… When you walk away from a manipulative partner, you need to feel strong and believe you are capable of going at things on your own. In reality, they won’t hesitate to use every dirty trick in the book to get you to change your mind. Preparing yourself for the ups and downs will see you through this dark tunnel.

2) You need a plan in place

Before evoking your desire to leave, you need a solid plan in place, and this includes living arrangements and knowing which divorce lawyer you want to hire to help you through. These essential points need to be addressed before you approach this delicate topic with your partner. Indeed, if you jump the gun and blurt out that you want a divorce without having gained the relevant legal advice, you could provoke earth-shattering narcissistic rage and therefore put yourself in danger. Plus, being prepared will give you the upper hand in the situation!

3) Decide where you want to tell your partner

Are you comfortable having to break the news to your partner at home, or would you prefer to do so in a public place? Plus, you’ll also need to consider if you want to address the matter alone, or with the support of a close friend or family member, for example. Building up to serving your spouse with divorce papers is a tough ask, so you need to feel comfortable in your environment.

>>> Read about how being in a narcissistic relationship changed me

4) Use concise sentences

When breaking the news, you need to ensure you are direct and to the point. There is no time to be evasive and wishy-washy because you need to get your point across clearly and fairly quickly too. The more you embellish what you have to say, the more opportunities you’ll give your soon-to-be-ex to convince you to stay. Changing your mind will be his ultimate goal here, so make sure you’re ready to deflect his attempts.

5) Grow a thick skin

Dealing with a narcissist will undoubtedly cause you a fair amount of pain and mental health strains, but you need to be prepared to face whatever they have up their sleeves for you. Leaving an abusive partner will never be smooth sailing and is likely to awaken the darkest dimensions of their twisted personalities, meaning nothing will be out of bounds. The bottom line is, they’ll try anything to get back at you because, in their eyes, you are destroying their whole world by taking back the power.

How does a narcissist react to divorce?

It is in the nature of a narcissist to believe that they are always superior to others and to refuse any criticism. If you make the decision to end your marriage, you are going against them. In this case, they may reveal the worst of themselves.

In general, there are certain characteristics that many toxic personalities exhibit in the context of a breakup:

  • Power play: A narcissist will do whatever it takes to get what they want. To this end, they may use power plays to force you to do what they want. And even worse, could influence their offspring to achieve their ends. Whether it's through money or threats, ... all means are good to achieve their goals, even if it may hurt their own family.
  • Planning in their personal interest: Their interests come first, and they will organize themselves in order to satisfy them, sometimes to the detriment of their loved ones.
  • Manipulation of feelings: They will always try to blame you for the mistakes in your marriage
  • Victimization: If they do not succeed, the narcissistic pervert will use emotional blackmail. They may be very kind to the judges in order to prove that they are suffering from the situation and that they are the victim.
  • Harassment: Without being violent, they may harass you on a daily basis so that you break down first. The harassment is then of a moral nature with home visits, incessant phone calls, text messages, letters, etc.

Will a narcissist accept divorce?

A narcissist's reaction to divorce can vary depending on many factors, including personality, beliefs, and relationship dynamics. Here are some possible scenarios:

  • Refusal and resistance: Narcissists generally have a strong aversion to failure and loss of control. If divorce is perceived as a threat to their self-image or power, they may resist aggressively or manipulatively. They may try to manipulate the situation to maintain control, using tactics of devaluation, emotional blackmail, or sabotage.
  • Revenge-seeking: A narcissistic person may react with anger, resentment, and a desire for revenge in the face of divorce. They may seek to inflict emotional pain, tarnish the other person's reputation, or use legal means to gain advantage or harm their spouse.
  • Indifference or devaluation: In some cases, a narcissist may react with apparent indifference or devaluation during a divorce. This may be a strategy to minimize the significance of the separation or to conceal their own feelings of vulnerability. They may show a lack of empathy or ignore their partner's emotional needs.

Will a narcissist ever ask for a divorce?

The most plausible reason which justifies why a narcissist will demand a divorce is that they believe that their current partner or prey is no longer worthy of them, or good enough to feed their narcissistic needs. What is ironic here, is that a narcissist leaves their former prey, not because they want to improve themselves and change, but instead to find someone weaker in order to manipulate.

Do narcissists move on quickly after divorce?

It's possible for a narcissistic person to bounce back relatively quickly after a divorce, but this depends on a number of factors. Here are some points to consider:

  • Resources and support networks: Narcissists may have a strong support network or financial resources that enable them to bounce back quickly after a divorce. They may be adept at self-promotion and seeking new sources of approval and admiration, which can help them bounce back more quickly.
  • Adaptability: Narcissists tend to be highly resilient and quick to adapt to new circumstances. They are often motivated by maintaining their self-image, and can quickly focus on new goals or relationships to regain a sense of control and satisfaction.
  • Lack of remorse or deep reflection: Narcissists tend to have a poor capacity for acknowledging wrongdoing or showing genuine remorse. As a result, they may not experience the same feelings of sadness or loss after a divorce. Instead, they may focus on their own needs and interests, minimizing the emotional impact of the separation.
  • Seeking new sources of approval: Narcissistic people may quickly seek new sources of approval and admiration to maintain their self-esteem. They may enter into new relationships, embark on new projects, or focus on their careers to gain the external validation that is so important to them.

It's important to note that even if a narcissistic person seems to bounce back quickly, this doesn't necessarily mean they're emotionally healed or that they've resolved the problems underlying their narcissism. Narcissistic behavior and thought patterns can persist and have repercussions in future relationships.

Editor’s opinion - The road to divorce has never been trickier

Getting divorced is a life-changing moment, but it can be emotionally damaging for all parties involved. Getting to the point where you actually get to sign divorce papers with your manipulative and abusive ex may be a long and eventful road, but it will sure be worth it. You’ll certainly be faced with tough obstacles along the way, but remember, your freedom is something you need to fight for, so don’t let anything your ex does make you change your mind.

🤗 Understand yourself, accept yourself, be happy… Let’s do it here and now!


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  16. HelloAdele
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  20. Californian SoilLondon Grammar

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