How-To Prepare for Family Court When Dealing with a Narcissist

How-To Prepare for Family Court When Dealing with a Narcissist

he stress of family court can mentally, emotionally and physically exhaust us caring moms trying to protect young, vulnerable children from narcissistic abuse. (Read my FREE Best Tips Blog) Typically, we moms are not lawyers, paralegals, or in a “fighting profession” of society. But rather, we are nurses, caregivers, teachers, and other helpers. We want protection, peace, and purpose. We want to be cooperative co-parents while loving and mothering our children—helping them grow into healthy, happy, whole, and functional adults. Generally, we don’t want to fight and go to court, unless it's to fight for our children’s well-being and/or safety.
So when faced with family court battles, motions, pre-trials, hearings, investigations, psych-evals, and court trials, we are like fish out of water. It’s definitely not our happy place! Family court is not a healthy place for us to be in regularly, but if we are forced to co-parent with a narcissist, it tends to be a place we visit often—to our dismay, but sometimes to our hope.  Sometimes, in some cases, we feel relieved that we can go to court and ask the judge for protections for our children. To endure this, we can learn strategies to cope, as well as, prepare and plan for the stresses of family court. We can learn tools and get some creative ideas to make this easier for us and our lawyers to deal with our custody case.

25 Best Tips for Dealing with Narcissists as Co-Parents

25 Best Tips for Dealing with Narcissists as Co-Parents

Narcissists Make Terrible Co-Parents!

Narcissists are manipulative and highly skilled at deception. Very often, when narcissists are backed into a corner of truth or feel threatened, they can be downright nasty. They have many tricks, tactics, and traps to victimize and re-victimize moms with narcissistic abuse, even after separation. Because of this unfortunate dynamic, we, as moms, must acquire the understanding, skills, and strategies to deal with these individuals as seamlessly as possible. Plus, we need to stay sane—-for the sake of ourselves, our children, and our custody case. However, remaining level-headed while dealing with the narcissist’s insanity is no easy feat. 

To cope with the situation rationally, we need a plan in place. To help other moms endure this experience and preserve the hope to overcome it, I offer tips, tools, and strategies in my books and blogs. I write specifically for mothers who are struggling to co-parent with a narcissist and suffering what I call “Co-Parenting Abuse”—which is really a continuation of narcissistic abuse, known as post-separation abuse. The bottom line is that narcissists can abuse us while we try to co-parent with them. In fact, the narcissist will use their continued access to us as an opportunity to exert their abusive tactics whenever possible.

Phrases That Can Neutralize The Narcissist

Phrases That Can Neutralize The Narcissist

We Need to Somewhat “Know” the Narcissist 

Sure – a narcissist will have tricks, tactics, and traps set with all sorts of manipulations and games. But we, on the other hand, must be the mature ones (because they can’t be). With a personality disorder such as narcissism, we can expect disorder—even in communication and conversation. On the other hand, we need strategies and skills to maintain our sanity. We also need to know our opponent and understand what motivates, drives, and triggers him. 

Using skillful means is about speaking to the person who is listening at their level so they can comprehend what you are saying, and so you don’t get automatically rejected based on their beliefs. Using skillful means is about explaining factually that the orders/directions are not coming from you but rather from the powers-that-be (the courts) who are in charge and are making rules that you both have to follow. Skillful means help you coexist in peace. Do you want some peace in your life?

What To Do About a GAL?

What To Do About a GAL?

Are you in a high-conflict battle with a narcissist? Is your ex unwilling to settle, mediate, or negotiate? Typical! Then, you know the frustration of how a custody case can drag on. At some point, you or your lawyer might think getting another professional on the case is a good idea. Or perhaps a judge might order a GAL (guardian ad litem) to investigate the child’s life (and both households) more in-depth and write a report to the courts. However, think again! The truth is that there are various experiences ranging from not helpful to good to horrible for the protective parent. 
What is a GAL? 

A guardian ad litem (GAL) is a professional appointed by a court (or requested and selected by attorneys) to look after and protect the interests of a minor child who cannot care for themselves and/or is legally incompetent due to their age. Their job is to investigate a child’s life and report findings. This means they interview parents, caregivers, and others in the child's life. Often, they’ll interview the child as well. They may request medical records and other information. In their report and testimony in a trial, they usually make recommendations to the court. The investigation, report, and recommendations are supposed to be based on “the best interests of the child.” Sounds good, right? Maybe, maybe not! Please keep reading.

Moms Dealing With Narcissists
For Moms Dealing with Narcissists

For Moms Dealing with Narcissists

If you are a mom having to co-parent with a narcissist or a mom in a high-conflict custody battle, you will find yourself having to do many, many things. We learn to become masterful, multi-tasker moms. We are juggling so many balls at once from the moment we wake up that it can feel like having a hundred jobs, all with one name: “mom.” It can be a downright overwhelming challenge, but challenges, stress, and struggle can all make us stronger. We learn to endure, be resilient, and overcome. We don’t just go through this, we grow through this! If we feel maxed out, we can simplify our lives and make different choices to better our, and our children’s, well-being. Choice is our fundamental power and it stems from having a healed mind and healthy self-esteem.

Here is a list of some things we must do as moms in this problematic/difficult situation.

Stay stable (in all ways, especially financially).
Stay sane (amid a narcissist’s insanity, drama, and personality disorder).
Grieve the loss of the relationship and the family we wished we had.
Heal from narcissistic abuse and trauma while watching our children be abused.

10 Factors To Consider If / When Switching Lawyers

10 Factors To Consider If / When Switching Lawyers

As worried and stressed-out moms, we often run (or rush) to a lawyer and dump all of our concerns, anxieties, complaints, pain, and problems. Most likely we’ve never been in a legal battle since it’s not our nature to fight for fairness or complain to such a degree. We might feel intimidated talking to a lawyer. We might feel ashamed since we are peace-seeking and peace-making, type of people. Typically, us empaths, have accepted unacceptable behavior and are filled with the anger of dealing with injustice and constant unfairness. Our first battle, breaking up with the narcissist, wore us out mentally, emotionally, and physically. Now we have a second legal battle that looms over our heads and haunts us. Can you relate?
We have had to break up with our own codependency, love addiction, and trauma bonds to our ex to recover ourselves and self-esteem. Then, we had to grieve our dreams of a happy family and face the pain of the lies, disappointments, and letdowns. Generally, we are not in good emotional shape when we get to the lawyer. We are heartbroken, scared to lose our children, and narcissistically abused with threats—and other tactics. Now that we left our abuser, he most likely is doing co-parenting abuse tactics that further hurt and destabilize us. How are we supposed to show up strong and confident at a lawyer’s office? What do we even ask the lawyer? We don’t know the law.

Don’t Allow Yourself To Become Desperate For A Lawyer!

Don’t Allow Yourself To Become Desperate For A Lawyer!

Custody Battles With A Narcissist

As women and moms, we can’t allow ourselves to be (or become) desperate for two major things: 1. Love 2. Lawyers. Being needy, confused, overwhelmed, and full of grief and pain can cause us to reach for anyone who will lend a listening ear and help. Narcissists love to prey on desperate people. As women who were desperate for love and attention, we may have inadvertently attracted a narcissist. The same is true for hiring a lawyer. We have to watch out for making desperate emotional decisions when it comes to hiring a lawyer and going to family court. I am here to share my survivor wisdom with you. (*Disclaimer below)

It's NOT wise to approach our custody cases from a state of desperation. We need to plan.

How To Survive a Custody Battle with a Narcissist
How To Survive a Custody Battle with a Narcissist: When the Family Courts Force You to Co-Parent

How To Survive a Custody Battle with a Narcissist: When the Family Courts Force You to Co-Parent

Have hope that you can overcome this dilemma with knowledge, the right focus, and tools—and come out of this stronger than before. 

After over a decade of struggle, in intolerable co-parenting conditions, Grace found ways to use what she refers to as “skillful means” to divert her narcissistic ex’s anger. Courageously, she stepped into her rights and power using several support systems and targeted tools. Combining this with her legal strategies, she was able to reach a place of peace for her and her child to thrive. Now, she shares with her readers what it took to achieve a level of fairness and protection for her and her young child. 

In this book, you will get Grace’s tips, tools, and strategies. Plus:

Get The Right Lawyer Guide (including a 20-Question-Worksheet to use & print)
What To Include In A Court Order (a complete list)
How To Communicate With A Narcissist Using Skilful Means
Legal Strategies For Family Court
And more!

If you are ready to learn, Grace is ready to teach!

What To Put In An Agreement Or Court Order When Dealing With A Narcissist

What To Put In An Agreement Or Court Order When Dealing With A Narcissist

Narcissists Are Very Difficult Co-Parents

Are you sick of filing motion after motion? You’re not alone. Do you feel terrified that you will have to go back to court over and over and have to face the narcissist each time until your child/children are eighteen years old!? Your fears are valid. However, have hope because you can take proactive steps by making a lengthy agreement or getting a comprehensive court order that can address problems before they arise.

Creating an all-inclusive, highly detailed list of parenting directions and also adding necessary clauses that spell out preventative measures will be arduous. But you can view this agreement–even if it needs to be twenty to thirty pages long–as one of the sources of your power and protection for you and your family.

3-Part Strategy For Dealing with Narcissists as Co-Parents

3-Part Strategy For Dealing with Narcissists as Co-Parents

Dealing with a narcissist as a co-parent?

Feel like you are going crazy?

Read or watch my . . .

3-Part Strategy for Co-Parenting and Custody Battles With A Narcissist
Establishing a Game Plan for Peace & Peace of Mind
The Narcissistic Co-Parent Can Be Navigated

Narcissists can be nasty. They can be especially difficult when they are triggered, angry, or lacking in “narcissistic supply”. So, it’s essential to have a plan in place for dealing with whatever comes your way. The GreyRock Method (being as boring as a grey rock) doesn’t always work and, further,  it doesn’t work for everything. This means we have to put our own strategies in place for dealing with a narcissist. We need a plan because we have to navigate the narcissist. This is self-work that we have to do to get strategic. 

Legal Strategies I Used in Family Court In A Custody Battle With A Narcissist*

Legal Strategies I Used in Family Court In A Custody Battle With A Narcissist*

As a protective mom, I suffered for eleven years in the U.S. Family Court System. In one battle, I lost my rights to my ex – an angry, bitter, wealthy narcissist who used the most expensive bulldog attorney to attack me as a way of defending himself. It was a 5-day trial that spanned two years and took three and a half years to get to. The saga was full of motions, pre-trial hearings and multiple requests for continuances. The truth is, I found the family court to be like a game of chess. He moves, you move. You move, he moves. It comes down to strategy and thinking long-term. Sometimes you lose a pawn but you protect the queen. Sometimes you lose a knight (inadequate attorney) but save the child. In order to be effective at this high-stakes game of family chess, I had to have adequate representation –someone seasoned who knew this legal game well.

We have to think both short-term and long-term.

Grace Wroldson's How to Communicate with a Narcissist
How To Communicate With A Narcissist Using Grace’s Skillful Means

How To Communicate With A Narcissist Using Grace’s Skillful Means

How To Communicate With A Narcissist Using Skillful Means
11 Super-Helpful Tips

From the author of Co-Parenting with a Narcissist: 7 Self-Rules To Stay Sane, 

(available at Amazon) 

by Grace W. Wroldson - Author & Strategy Coach for Moms

How Communication with a Narcissist Fails

As a mom trying to co-parent with my ex — an angry narcissist — I found myself failing to get my message through to him.

5 Factors That Made The Narcissist Stop!

5 Factors That Made The Narcissist Stop!

5 Factors That Can Make A Narcissist Stop 

From the author of, Co-Parenting with a Narcissist: 7 Self-Rules to Stay Sane

By Grace W. Wroldon - Author & Strategy Coach for Moms

Do you feel attacked?

Are you in a psychological battle with a narcissistic ex?

Have you been dealing with co-parenting abuse?

You feel stuck. You’re forced to co-parent with a narcissist. It feels like having your own personal terrorist.

Tips for Holidays With A Narcissistic Co-Parent

Tips for Holidays With A Narcissistic Co-Parent

3 TIPS to Survive The Holidays with a Narcissist

Be 1 Step Ahead of the Narcissist *

This Holiday Season

THE . . .

Narcissists love to ruin holidays.

Hi! I’m Grace Wroldson, author of Co-Parenting with a Narcissist: 7 Self-Rules to Stay Sane & strategy coach for moms co-parenting with a narcissist and/or in custody battles.

I am here to help support you - as you keep yourself safe, your children happy, and *very important* your sanity - when dealing with a narcissistic co-parent.

Co-Parenting Therapy with a Narcissist by author Grace Wroldson
How To Deal With Co-Parenting Therapy With a Narcissist

How To Deal With Co-Parenting Therapy With a Narcissist

Surviving Co-Parenting Therapy with a Narcissist*

20 Things I Did to Skillfully Deal and Cope with Court-Ordered Co-Parenting Therapy

Co-Parenting Therapy with a Narcissist 

My story of how I effectively dealt with co-parenting therapy and the parenting coordinator in a high-conflict family court battle with a narcissist. This is my survivor-wisdom…

(Please, take what you like and leave the rest. It may be useful for another time.)

As a protective mom, in so much fear, I wanted to eliminate the “threat” to my daughter (which, originally, in my mind, meant eliminating the narcissistic father from the picture or giving him only supervised visitation), but I learned I couldn’t do this in my custody case. Which meant I had to learn to cope and co-parent.

Co-Parenting With a Narcissist Grace Wroldson
Communicating With the Narcissist (When You Have to Co-Parent)

Communicating With the Narcissist (When You Have to Co-Parent)

Just Imagine. . .

How would it feel to have friendly, business-like, neutral-toned messages from your ex?

How much easier would co-parenting be?

How would it feel to not be in a constant state of turmoil and not feel like you have an enemy or your own personal terrorist?

How would it feel to be free of all the criticisms, complaints, attacks, false accusations, and negativity?

If you want this feeling of freedom from your ex, keep reading/listening.

How-To Get the Right Lawyer When Dealing With A Narcissist

How-To Get the Right Lawyer When Dealing With A Narcissist

If you are in a high-conflict custody battle with a narcissist, you will need to not only be “evenly matched” in the courtroom, but also well represented and well prepared. Our custody case is often only as good as our attorney is. Not being adequately represented cost me my legal rights to the child that I was trying to protect. My former attorney, while affordable, was ill-prepared, not a family law attorney, unequipped, easily tricked (because he bargained with goodwill and sincerity), and not experienced enough to handle what happened. If you read my books, you will read that I had to stage a comeback after my brutal trial and loss. If you can avoid losing, do so

8 Ways to Help Children with a Narcissistic Dad

8 Ways to Help Children with a Narcissistic Dad

We Suffered, Now They Suffer From a Narcissist...
The hard truth is that our children will struggle from having a narcissistic parent. We suffered at the hands of a narcissist, and now we see our children suffering. It’s painful to witness. The subtle types of abuse, slights, ignoring needs, dismissing wants, and disregarding feelings can infuriate us as mothers. We want to rush in and fix it. 
Yet, we know we can’t change the narcissist. We also know that our children need to develop coping strategies to deal with toxic people and learn to survive. In addition, we are often in the situation of having to comply with court orders that allow this abusive person parenting rights. What an awful system! As a concerned parent, you will need to adopt/implement some strategies to help your child cope. You can help in a few ways that are within your power as a parent.

How-To Protect Your Kids from Gaslighting and The Lies of the Narcissistic Parent 

How-To Protect Your Kids from Gaslighting and The Lies of the Narcissistic Parent 

Abuse happens. And it can happen to our most beloved children. When we leave the abuser, sometimes our vulnerable children are then in a direct line of threat to being abused by our abuser. It breaks our hearts, fills us with anxiety, and gnaws at us with guilt. It can be so painful and infuriating to witness this. We often feel powerless to stop it. However, there are ways we can help. 

3 Keys to Creating Peace Co-Parenting with a Narcissist
3 Keys to Creating Peace When Co-parenting with a Narcissist

3 Keys to Creating Peace When Co-parenting with a Narcissist

Co-parenting with a narcissist is a stressful experience. It can feel like trying to work with a terrorist. Narcissists aren’t generally team players, and the nature of selfishness often causes those of us who deal with them to get the short end of the stick. If the narcissist is abusive (often the case), and if the narcissist has deemed you the TOB (target of blame), then you might be having to deal with tactics like opposite parenting and counter-parenting. An angry narcissist creates a lot of drama, chaos, and confusion — the realm where the narcissist destabilizes the target to win. 

Co-Parenting Abuse by a Narcissist
The Co-Parenting Abuse List

The Co-Parenting Abuse List

*Before you begin, please read my “Disclaimer” below. I also want to issue a “Trigger Warning.” As you read this list, it might bring up some PTSD. I had to write this list down in small doses after I had overcome the abuse. Be mindful that you may need to take a break from reading and practice self-care. I believe that the truth can set us free, so identifying the truth helped to set my mind free of the confusion I had before I caught on to what was being done to me.

Grace For You Coaching

Grace For You Coaching

Since life coaching is about making actionable changes, here is a list of some of the ways that I help you get in control of your life in our life coaching calls. 

Hear your story! 
Validate your suffering
Acknowledge your concerns
Help you get clear on the issues and priorities
Identify what your obstacles are 
Brainstorm ideas for safety and sanity
Make to-do lists
Create a healthy mind-set
Shift the focus
Teach you about important principles

Co-Parenting Abuse When Dealing with a Narcissist

Co-Parenting Abuse When Dealing with a Narcissist

Co-parenting abuse is real. It makes parenting an awful experience. Having to walk on eggshells and be the perfect parent to not give the narcissistic parent anything to complain about is stressful and exhausting. It creates such a stressful, uncooperative environment that many parents just want to give up. I have talked to these exhausted mothers in many life coaching sessions. After all, parenting is a difficult job in itself, add to that someone coming after you at all times while you try to parent makes it almost impossible. Many mothers, including myself, have wanted to run away from the job because of how awful, horrible, and traumatizing co-parenting with a narcissist can be.

Grace Wroldson author and life coach
Ongoing Custody Battle with a Narcissist #MeTooFamilyCourt

Ongoing Custody Battle with a Narcissist #MeTooFamilyCourt

I recently wrote for Motherhood-Moment to raise awareness on family court/legal abuse by narcissists against protective parents/mothers.
I am a survivor of legal abuse. I have been in an 11-year family court custody battle with my narcissistic ex over our only child. I have had 3 separate attorneys, 3 GAL reviews/reports, 5 pediatricians, 2 psychological evaluations, over 50 court appearances, a lengthy 5-day trial, 4 different co-parenting interventions, 2 no-trespassing orders, 1 police report, and many other professionals involved in our case.

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