How to win a custody battle with a narcissistKeesha Montoya
Avoid these 2 Common Mistakes that Can Cost You Custody
You’ve lived through the devastating impact of being in a relationship with a narcissist. You’ve decided to leave the relationship.
How do you protect your children from your ex who is now thrashing and attempting to use custody issues to hurt you and the children?
You need to hire a law firm that can help you avoid these two common mistake when negotiating custody arrangements with a narcissistic spouse or partner.
Mistake 1: Underestimating the Harm that a Narcissist can Inflict on Your Children
Narcissists switch between the sides of themselves that appear reasonable and charming, and the sides that are abusive.
You might think, “If I just give in to what they want, it will keep the peace for our children’s sake.”
This couldn’t be further from the truth.
Narcissists are highly competitive. They care about winning and getting control of your children at all costs.
That seemingly kind and perfect mother or father, can easily escalate their dysfunctional behaviors to a point of abusing your children just to get back at you.
Imagine this scenario.
You give in to your narcissistic husband’s demands for shared custody of your little girl because he’s never shown his abusive side to your child.
You are relieved there to move forward without a custody battle.
Things seem to be going well. He is respecting the visitation schedule. Your child seems happy.
Yet, little do you know that when your child is with your spouse, your ex is withholding food from your child and making snide comments such as “You don’t want to be heavy like Mommy.”
You think everything is fine until you discover that your child has started cutting herself.
When you take your child for psychotherapy sessions, you discover that your ex has been starving your little girl when she is with him.
Why didn’t your child say anything to you?
She was confused when your ex switched between being “loving and fun Dad” to the abusive monster that withheld food and commented cruelly on her body size.
Unable to articulate the abuse, she started cutting herself as way to cope with the stress.
You could not have imagined that your ex could harm your daughter in this way.
Unfortunately, this type of scenario happens frequently.
So how can you protect your children?
You need a strong advocate for your child especially in a legal climate where knowledgeable and caring courts are now removing children from the care of parents who do not actively protect their children from abuse.
At Keesha Montoya law firm, we take the time to help our clients understand what positions they should take in custody negotiation. We guide our clients about where they should compromise or where they should hold firm in child custody negotiations with a narcissistic spouse or partner.
Mistake 2: Not Understanding that Narcissists will Manipulate and Use the Court System Against You
Imagine this scenario.
You are a father who has gone through the experience of having your live-in girlfriend take your child out of the state without your permission or knowledge.
It’s been years since you’ve seen your child because your ex kept moving and hiding your child. Finally, you have managed to get an order for visitation.
You eagerly go to pick up your daughter for the day. You both can’t wait to see each other.
Four hours into the visit, sheriffs come knocking at your door with a report that the mother is claiming that you’ve kidnapped the child.
You explain that you have visitation rights. You share an audio recording of your ex agreeing to the visitation for that day, but they still insist you take the child back within the hour as a show of “good faith.”
With your daughter in tears, you reluctantly take her back to her mother, who drags the child into the living room and shuts the door in your face.
There is no concern by your ex for the cruel disruption of the father-daughter relationship.
Many narcissists are experts at using the legal system to humiliate and punish you at the cost of you children’s emotions and physical well-being.
While there are deeply compassionate and well-versed judges who tirelessly dedicate themselves to making the best judgments to protect children, their jobs can be especially challenging because narcissistic spouses and partner are experts at hiding abusive behaviors while presenting themselves as loving parents.
It takes time to reveal narcissists and present evidence of the dangers they pose to children.
During custody challenges, it’s not unusual for narcissistic spouses and partners to:
- Blindside you with protective orders based on false accusations of abuse to prevent you from seeing your children.
- Present a façade to the court of a being a loving and doting parent.
- Lie about your parenting skills.
- Use legal processes to stonewall or prolong the process just to make it harder on you and the children.
To protect your children, your attorney will need to go beyond proving that your spouse or partner is narcissistically toxic.
Your attorney will need to prove that your spouse or partner is engaged in harming your children in specific ways such as:
- Physical abuse.
- Verbal and emotional abuse.
- Weaponizing your child to damage the parent child relationship with you.
- Creating situations that are emotionally detrimental such as making your child choose between both parents such that the child feels disloyal to support you or demonstrate affection toward you.
- Denying you access to your children.
These are just a few behaviors that you might have to demonstrate to the court.
Each case has nuances and differences that will influence what evidence needs to be presented to help the court rule favorably for your children’s protection.
In cases, where the damage to children may be more subtle, it becomes even more important to hire an attorney who has experience with revealing how the narcissist is not only manipulating and abusing your children, but also using the custody proceedings to inflict further pain.
After a divorce or narcissistic relationship is over, narcissistic parents will try to:
- Take you back to court to challenge custody orders.
- Refuse to comply with custody orders.
- Create drama around visitations to disrupt your relationship with your child.
But you don’t have to be at their mercy.
At Keesha Montoya Law, we can help you navigate the process of protecting your children and guide you strategically so that you can present relevant and convincing evidence to the court and obtain favorable judgments that benefit your children.
Take that deeper breath. You are not alone.
Take a moment right now to settle and ground yourself.
Tap into the empowered part of yourself that still exists despite all that you’ve been through with a narcissistic spouse or partner.
Then, schedule a free consultation today to explore how we can empower you to be the strongest advocate for your children.