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This article was originally published on www.drsueandyou.com

Navigating through a high conflict divorce is extremely difficult. Navigating through a custody battle where you are alienated from your children can seem impossible.  You want instant gratification and you do not know where or whom you should turn to for help.   Do these circumstances sound familiar to you?

Every day as a certified parenting coach in  high conflict divorce, I hear from parents who are desperate to stop their narcissistic ex from alienating their children.  What many people do not understand is that their so-called narcissist ex is doing this for a reason and it is usually because they want something from you.  I always ask my clients , “What does your ex want from you and if he or she got it would they stop all of this chaos?  People usually respond very quickly with , “He or she wants to destroy me.” That may be true but I promise you that is not truly what he or she wants.

If you know anything about narcissism, then you know that narcissists love playing the victim role and see you as the aggressor. They simply do not believe that they have done anything wrong and everything is your fault. Knowing this, there is no point in arguing that you are right and he/she is wrong. You will never win that battle and will waste tons of time, money and energy trying to get something that is impossible.  Instead your narcissist wants to hear that he/she are truly special and amazing.  Yet, so many people keep trying to reason with their  narcissists.  Please stop doing that because I promise you it will not work.

What your narcissistic ex really wants from you is: (Please try to refrain from laughing)

Consideration of his/her feelings

I know you are laughing now but I am serious. When your narcissist see’s you as the aggressor he or she see’s you as having no compassion for what they have gone through.  A little compassion from you will go a long, long way in keeping your narcissist under wraps.

You don’t do everything wrong:

You are mad and aggravated with how your ex is treating you and  you want to convey that message to him or her. Wrong move with a narcissist. All that does is fuel the fire and provides the narcissist with the chaos he/she desires. Make a choice to relay messages to your ex in a positive way and see what you get back.


Yes they want you to say you are sorry. So, if you have a pride problem, please get over it because it is hurting you here in getting what you need from your narcissist. Believe me when I tell you that you were not always an angel in your marriage.  It takes two to get married and two to get divorced.


Another laughable moment for you I’m sure.  Respect however is what a narcissist wants from you. He or she wants acknowledgment for what they have done right or really for what they think they have done right.

Remember, when your narcissistic  ex-spouse does not get what they feel they deserve from you, they become more aggravated and  aggressive.  They feel that they have to punish you for not giving them what they want.  This is turn fuels them to unfortunately play hardball and use your kids as their weapons.

When it comes to parent alienation in high conflict divorces, it is always the alienated parent that has to do the repair work.  This may seem extremely unfair to you but it is well worth it when you repair your relationship with your alienated children. So please look at these tips as strategies to gain closeness to your children instead of torture.   Sometimes giving a little helps you gain a  lot.

About Dr. Sue


Dr. Sue Cornbluth, also known as “Dr. Sue,” is not afraid to express her direct opinions about the most controversial topics and is often referred to as a “power house” for child advocacy.

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