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Is a mediated divorce possible with a narcissist?

On Behalf of | May 8, 2023 | Mediation

If you’re married to a person with a narcissistic personality disorder (NPD), then you most likely know they believe they are more eccentric or exceptional than others. This renders them entitled and unempathetic. Given their characters, you can already tell they are difficult to deal with, especially when agreeing on something like divorce. 

Below are the reasons why mediation may not be possible or may be difficult when divorcing a narcissist:

Their desperation to win an argument

Narcissists may view mediation as a battle they must win. This is characterized by their inability to consider the other person’s feelings, making it difficult to compromise.

Their ability to gaslight 

Narcissists can make a person doubt their discernment of experiences and understanding of events by trying to convince them of a different twisted version of events that favors them. This may make the mediation process more difficult during a divorce as the parties will have extremely differing narratives.

Their tendency to play the victim

Mediation may be more difficult when instead of both parties trying to reach an agreement, one party plays the victim and always needs to be right. Narcissistic people will most likely distort and twist the truth to a version that best suits their intended outcomes.

Essential tips when trying to mediate with a narcissist

  • Stay calm and control your emotions: Controlling your emotions when trying to mediate with a narcissist is essential. This is because a narcissist might try to provoke you, disrupting your thought process.
  • Do not interact outside of mediation: Doing everything possible not to engage outside of mediation will save you from unwanted drama. This will also help set boundaries for a positive, productive divorce mediation process

Mediation is possible even if you are dealing with someone with narcissistic personality disorder (NPD), but you need to go into the process aware of the games that they play and prepared to defend against them. Experienced legal guidance can help.