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How do I co-parent with a narcissist?

On Behalf of | Oct 31, 2022 | Family Law |

Even for divorced couples that get along well, co-parenting can be a challenge. If your ex happens to be a narcissist, then you have an extra level of worry to manage.

Fortunately, it is possible to co-parent with a narcissist in a way that allows your child to benefit from the presence of both parents. According to Heathline, you can establish a legal parenting plan and work on maintaining strong personal boundaries.

The parenting plan

Typically, a narcissist will try to manipulate a situation as much as possible. This is why it is helpful to have a parenting plan in place that the courts can enforce if it is necessary. A legal parenting plan could involve things like which parent pays for medical costs, weekly visitation schedules and holiday visitation schedules. You should spend time writing down all of these details to make sure there are no gray areas a narcissist could exploit.

Involving the courts in this process makes sure that your narcissist ex cannot get under your skin if they start trying to manipulate the plan. The courts will enforce it.

Maintaining boundaries

A narcissist thrives on the reactions that others give them. Having strong boundaries will lessen your ex’s ability to do this. Consider only contacting each other through email, and never texts or calls. This way, you will have more time to respond. It will also give you a “paper trail” that you can use if your ex is becoming manipulative and trying to violate the terms of the parenting plan.

Working with a narcissist to raise a child is difficult. However, with some help from the courts and firm boundaries, it is possible to do.

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