It can be a stressful time when your relationship breaks down and you have a child to think about as you prepare for the next chapter in your life, especially if your ex has a narcissistic personality. Something my mother knew all too well having to deal with my father for many years of her life.
Someone with that sort of personality is clearly programmed to think about themselves before anyone else, but when you are working your way through a child support calculator with the help of a lawyer you will want to know how your claim for regular financial support is going to be received by your former partner.
Here are a few pointers to consider when you are trying to negotiate child maintenance payments with a confirmed narcissist.
Understanding how they work
It might have taken a while for reality to set in but once you have grasped the concept that the person you were sharing your life with has a narcissistic personality you will probably have feelings of trepidation about how your claim for child support is going to progress.
The bottom line is that even if you believe that they love the child that they helped bring into the world it is still going to go against the grain to be told that they will have to make regular payments in order to help bring their child up, especially if they are no longer the center of attention in the child’s world.
A class personality trait that sums up a narcissist is their belief that they are superior to others and often have zero empathy when it comes to thinking about other people’s feelings.
What to expect
A typical narcissist will behave in a certain way when it comes to paying bills and will tend to prioritize payments in order of what they consider to be important.
This means that this sort of person has a tendency to stall on paying financial commitments that they believe are of little value.
It is often a question of keeping up appearances with their wider social circle, so it could be that they pay the tennis club membership on time but don’t think it is that important to pay summer camp fees so promptly.
Guilt is not something that a typical narcissist will feel and that can make it tricky when trying to persuade them to see priorities in the same order that you see them.
You might have to focus their attention
Narcissists clearly don’t like being told what to do and they are not going to respond well to a court ordering them to make payments, however, it may well be the case that you will have to take those steps to ensure that they are legally obligated to pay rather than them controlling how much and how often they send you money.
It might be a case of telling them what they want to hear to get them to pay their dues, which means massaging their ego and telling them how generous they are.
Having lived with them you will know how to push the right buttons to get what you want and if you know how their narcissistic personality works you can try to approach the subject of child support in just the right way.