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How can you deal with a narcissistic co-parent?

On Behalf of | Mar 13, 2022 | Child Custody |

While certain parts of co-parenting may feel simple, dealing with a narcissistic co-parent who wants to take up your time can cause you stress.

Learning about common ways to deal with this situation can help you make the best choices possible for you and your children.

Stay alert with your children

According to Psychology Today, many narcissists tend to lie to children or attempt to sway their opinions so that they are the favored parent. You may notice your co-parent breaking rules in your parenting plan, such as feeding your children unhealthy foods or letting them stay up later than usual.

These actions can range from irritating but harmless to unsafe. Knowing when to seek help or have a serious discussion with your co-parent is important.

Remain calm

Although you may feel tempted to become angry at the insults your co-parent says to you, finding ways to remain in control of your emotions can help prevent worse fights. You may learn about breathing techniques and keep in mind that you cannot control other people’s behavior.

By focusing less on changing your co-parent’s attitude and more on your changing your own, you can shield your children from drama and harm.

Be aware of guilt trips

Some narcissists may try to force parents into doing what they want by using guilt or other emotional methods. Staying aware of these techniques and distancing yourself from your co-parent, such as leaving the room, when you notice them can help you prevent disagreements.

Using empathy and continually choosing to deal with child care issues in a mature way can diffuse many potential conflicts with a narcissistic co-parent.


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