Divorcing a toxic partner — a narcissist or antisocial personality, or a very manipulative person— can be very hard.
So it is a good idea to have a plan when you set out to leave. You have to prepare physically, emotionally, psychologically.
Straight off the bat, I will remind you that there is a good chance you may not be fully prepared for all the shit that will be thrown your way. But you can still make sure you at least have some idea of what may be waiting for you, so you can take some precautions and steel yourself for the ride.
So here is a list of some do’s & don’ts that may help you.
- Don’t assume everything will go your way or according to your plan.
Do remain open and flexible, so you can adapt when the toxic partner goes in game mode.
If you are too fixed on the outcome or the execution of your plan, you will be disappointed and you will want to force things. This is never a good idea, as it makes you freeze whenever the narcissist does something totally nasty and/or unexpected.
When you remain open and flexible, you’ll be able to tweak your plan and change your strategy whenever it is needed. It will keep you emotionally and psychologically sane. Plus your attitude will confuse the toxic ex.
- Don’t think it will be easy.
Do know that the toxic ex will make it as hard on you as possible. Plus they know your triggers well, so they know exactly how to push your buttons and how to make you angry, feel crazy and how to hurt you the most.
When you know it’s going to be a tough ride, it will be easier for you to see the hits coming your way. And see them for what they are: means to make you give in and give up.
- Don’t assume they will let you get away with leaving them just like that.
Do know that they will play mind games on you. On your family and friends. On your kids, if you have them. They will even try and play the lawyers, the judges and the system. No one that is close to you or in your camp is safe for those mind games. They’ll try to manipulate everyone they can get their hands on.
- Don’t believe a word of their so-called good intentions.
Do know that any promise they make, they will also break.
- Don’t go it alone.
Do get a lawyer involved. And preferably one that specifically deals with this toxic kind of divorce and people. Make a case of choosing people that cannot be fooled by your toxic ex.
Do get your support system in place. Make sure you have family and friends you can trust in your corner. But also be very careful who you trust. Do look into a support group you can go to and share your story with.
Do think about getting the support of a therapist, counsellor or coach specialised in toxic relationships.
After all, you need all the help you can get.
- Don’t take the bait when you’re being provoked.
Do see any provocation for what it is: a way to hurt you, anger you, to get you riled up, so you do or say something stupid.
This is why the no-contact-rule or limited-contact-rule is so important. It prevents you from being provoked and getting dragged into shitty mind games and emotional ploys to make you feel like the bad one.
- Don’tget emotional when they are around. Don’t show you’re angry, hurt, upset, frustrated. Showing your emotions will be seen as a weakness for the toxic one to exploit.
Do keep your emotions in check until you are out of their range. Release them with people you trust or said therapist, counsellor or coach. Or a support group.
- Don’t rely on reason or logic.
Do know that you cannot reason with a toxic partner. So, don’t put your energy there. Rather put your energy on you and the ones that really need you.
- Don’t let them fool you with their mind games.
Do educate yourself on their MO, so you can see when they are in full-on manipulation. So you can recognise when they are manipulating you. And how they do that.
- Don’t go into any meeting or court sittings unprepared.
Do prepare for some nasty stuff to happen. Protect your energy and try to disconnect emotionally. They are not worth your reactions, so keep yourself in check. You can always unload afterwards when you’re away from their toxic energy.
If you are dealing with an abusive or toxic relationship, check out my website https://christelvangelder.com/
If you need a coach by your side, maybe Instant Coach is the solution for you.
If you want to start healing after a toxic/abusive relationship, check out this free guide to start the process.
Share this Post