These terms have become so popular and prevalent that they are thrown around in most contentious divorces. As these phrases appear in more and more books and articles, people are using them any time they think they can gain an advantage by labeling their ex. When a relationship deteriorates, it can sometimes be difficult to give a partner the benefit of the doubt. It’s easy to read only negative intentions into all behaviors.
For this reason, it’s important to become educated on narcissism and try to gain perspective. Your rational evaluation of incidents and interactions can be very helpful as you and your attorney work towards a divorce hearing.
Micromanipulation and What To Do About It
This article on micromanipulation describes a method covert narcissists use to regain control. The goal of a narcissist after a fight is to regain sympathy from their partner. The article suggests:
If someone you love has narcissistic traits and it’s beginning to feel like they’re manipulating you, take distance and start a record of their behaviour.
That way, you can build a picture of toxic “micromanipulations” for what they are- a controlling tactic – and break free to healthier ground.
Of course, narcissism isn’t limited to micromanipulation. There are a whole host of other traits that could manifest if you are dealing with a narcissist. The above technique of documenting your partner’s behavior can be helpful with all traits you notice that might show your partner to be a narcissist. Our article on documenting for your attorney, could be helpful for you in this situation.
Is Everyone With Narcissistic Traits A Narcissist?
This article does a good job of pointing out that most of us have some narcissistic and manipulative character traits. She also reminds us that these traits are not always negative or destructive. These are common aspects of the human experience and not necessarily problematic in most people. However, once a divorce gets contentious, those normal aspects of your ex’s personality that were perfectly acceptable when you were together can be seen in a different light. Sometimes, that means seeing abuse that was never clear before. Other times, it means seeing abuse where there is simply conflict.
A good attorney, especially with the assistance of a professional therapist, can help you evaluate what is true. More importantly, they can help you see what is helpful and relevant to moving forward with your own life and letting go of your past.