One of the most devastating and common impacts of a divorce from a narcissist is Parental Alienation and the effects of the toxic battle that it has on them. Managing and mitigating this is very counter-intuitive, takes courage and clarity of thought.
The Achilles Heel
Conventional wisdom proposes that the standard advice for partners of narcissists is to escape, and impose no contact as quickly and resolutely as possible. This can often entail a swift escape in the dead of night taking as many belongings as can fit in a car. Kids in common is the victim’s worst nightmare, and Achilles heel that is almost impossible to protect as they are weaponised by the alienating parent against the targeted one. They do this regardless of the adverse impact on the kids, for whom they don’t actually care, and who suffer considerable psychological harm as a result. Moreover, it is a vulnerability that a narcissist will exploit ruthlessly. Loving parents can often feel themselves pushed to suicide – and will be horrified to learn that that is very often the intention of the malignant narcissist. Very sadly the utter helplessness and horror experienced by the targeted parent can often push them over the edge.
In my experience of Parental Alienation, both personal and that of clients, is that there is very rarely a “right” solution. But there are some that are much less “wrong” than giving up on the child, wrapping yourself up into knots, or committing the unthinkable.
By thinking counter-intuitively, and with a deep understanding of the narcissist, their mindset and own vulnerabilities, it is possible to turn the tables on the alienating parent. Furthermore, it is possible to avoid the traps they set to collect evidence and sway courts, but instead build your own compelling case. Conventional wisdom – that we have instinctively followed, is forced on us by friends and family and is proposed by non-NPD specialist therapies, often needs to be parked.
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