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Fighting the narc in court

Community Member

Is this something anyone else is going through at the moment? I've been in this battle for the past three years and seriously find the legal system a joke.

24 Replies 24

Champion Alumni
Champion Alumni

Hey Eleven

Welcome to the forums. My name is Paul....It sounds like you are in a tough place right now...Its just difficult to help if you dont provide us with a problem. Do you mean the family court? If you do I have spent nearly seven years on and off trying to get 'contact' with my wonderful daughter back in the 90's.

If you wish to elaborate we are here for you 11

Kind Thoughts


Hey Paul,

I'm sorry for being so vague. Don't really know where to start. Yes, family law. 3 years I have been in the system with property settlement. I have a narc ex who would rather hold onto me this way than let me live my life. He has lied and continues to lie, he causes delays intentionally and supplies information for disclosure that is either fabricated, has pages missing. Just before each court attendance, his legal team will throw in a red herring or two to mislead the case with other matters. Hate how my life is put on hold and how something so easily sorted has dragged on for this long. I have from the beginning only wanted the fair share but even that is a struggle. I was financially abused throughout more than 20 years of marriage because I was under the belief we were working towards the future of our kids and our financial future. Instead he hid money, spent it at his will and fabricated stories. I believed everything he said as I knew no better. Things have only been made clear the past 5 years since I discovered him cheating and I unraveled a whole lie within our lives. I have had to financially reconstruct over 20 years of information I had no access to. The legal system seems to work for those that lie and are coniving instead of fact and truth. Guess I'm hoping someone here has been through the same and can help me with their experience.

Community Member

Dear Eleven11. Lynda here. You've probably guessed by now narc's have an excellent way of knowing how far to push buttons. Is your lawyer aware he's basically fighting a narc. Once it goes to court, he will twist everything to make it seem that you're the one who did wrong. If your lawyer is aware of the personality condition, make sure he has the 'i's' dotted, and the 't's' crossed. You need to be prepared for everything your ex's lawyer will put to you. When narc's are challenged, they are inclined to tell whoever challenges them that everything they've ever done has been for their families. They come across very convincingly and look you directly when they say whatever. They actually believe they did nothing to deserve the treatment they get. Unfortunately, because their own lawyer (usually unintentionally) may instruct them that if they're unable to attend court procedure because of 'unavoidable circumstances', either the hearing will be delayed, or the lawyer will do his best in their absence. If the lawyer tells the client he will do his best, often the narc may instruct his lawyer that he needs to be there. Perhaps a letter from your lawyer along with a Dr's note to his lawyer explaining the personality of your ex might help. Not saying it will, but it's worth considering. Have a talk with your lawyer about the personality of your ex.

Best of luck with this one. Lynda.

Hi Eleven11

No worries at all Eleven. I am sorry to read what your ex has done to you for so many years. He is also still trying to manipulate and control as well. I see that you only wanted your fair share and he wasnt happy with that either.

Even though I was in the same court with contact issues it can be a dreadful period to go through. I was fortunate with my ex as we just used the 50/50 principle without court. I also have some friends in the US and they have the 50/50 split as well.

The first charter of the family court is to operate 'In The Child's Best Interests' I hope the court realises your position as the mother of the children in your particular case.

I was sad and disappointed to read that your ex has been cheating on you as well. Due to being a property settlement you cant really suggest to the court he undergo a psychological evaluation either. In contact disputes this can be done to enable a more informed decision to be made.

Pipsy has a point about making the court aware of your ex's personality. Whether a sworn affidavit or statement may help

This is a bad place to be in eleven..I sincerely wish you well and hope your situation has the courts' consideration before a decision is handed down.

Kind Thoughts for you


❤️ hugs

I am finally out the other side of court, divorce, property settlement and child access, for now.

I was totally kept out of the loop in terms of our finances, so I had no clue how to truly find everything. I know he'd hidden stuff but couldn't find it. Also employed a forensic accountant, he found nothing and it cost about $3k for him to tell me that. The exN screwed me in property settlement and with ongoing support. I can't work more than a couple of days a week, so things can be tough. I probably spent about $35K on two court proceedings; one for property settlement and the other to move the children interstate.

I had to let a lot of things slide in order to be "let" move interstate.

The Australian court system (federal court in this case) doesn't recognise narcissistic high conflict abuse and manipulation. Even my lawyer said he'd be able to handle it.. but was surprised with what an awful person the exN turned out to be.

Hugs ❤️

Community Member

Dear Eleven11,

I just looked on this site to try and get help for my situation and found your post. Wow, narcissists heh!!! I separated from my narc almost 3 years ago. We have 4 children, 1 with special needs and we are only now attempting to settle financially. He has stopped providing any child support (I think he feels I get enough money from my part time job and Centrelink) and he has the children reluctantly for 4 days a month. However, he constantly puts on Facebook how much he loves the kids, how hard it is with a special needs child and how greedy and awful I am (because I ask for child support money).

I have done so much research on narcissism and narcissistic abuse that I ended up signing up for a psych degree and have enough data to write a book (may do that one day). Your ex sounds quite text book with the control, lying and cheating. What I have learnt from my own experience and from research is that the only way to deal with them is to be completely dismissive and have no unnecessary contact with them. Do not look them up on Facebook, do not respond to text messages or emails (unless strictly about the children) & just don't react. They will continue to fire venom at you and throw in these 'red herrings' but please try to see it for what it is. They have lost control of you and do not cope with that type of rejection.

All of this is exhausting I know. I am using a free legal service at the moment as I know that my ex will drag this out as long as possible. Is this something you could do - it takes a little pressure off if you are not having to fork out each time their story changes. Their whole point is to wear you down - when I feel like this, I just look up a couple of narcissism sites to be reminded that this is not my fault. Trusting your husband (or wife) with finances and fidelity is expected of marriage so please do not be hard on yourself and don't blame yourself.

I hope that you continue to post on here about your journey. You will get through this eventually but I will keep checking in and support you on the way.

And in all of this try to remember - they have to live with themselves ALL the time. Imagine how awful that would be!!

Wow! My story is so similar to these. 20 years together. We now have three children aged 6-11. He has treated us terribly over the years. He was mean, controlling, gave me no access to money, ignored me, barely saw the kids. Last year i discovered he'd been living a secret life and spending our savings at a ridiculous rate. He had money in accounts in my name for his own personal use. He even put large sums of money in and out of my personal account without my knowledge while i was pregnant with my third child. He is a business man and earns an enormous amount of money. When i caught him out , he denied everything and raged. He left. He is now living with another woman. Not the one he spent our savings with. Recently he saw a lawyer and was told he's entitled to 40% of the remaining assets and that what he spent is irrelevant. I'm hoping to keep our home. My children have good friends and enjoy school. We go to court next week. He didn't file all the requested documents saying he is unable to get his bank statements. He is a horrible horrible man. I desperately hope to be free of him soon. Of course his friends and family adore him. He blames everything on me. I wanted us to come to an agreement on our own, but he refuses to speak to me. He hasn't spoken to me for years. As if i don't exist. He was horrible to live with. Kids don't seem to like him much. It's bizarre to be in this situation. So much of my life being treated terribly. I'm so sad for my children.

Hey Forever

I just want to say how sorry I am that you are experiencing this. I hope that Court goes as smoothly as it can for you next week.

I have a young daughter to an abusive alcoholic, gambling addict pathological liar who is like no man I've ever encountered before. He is so manipulative and nasty. I am not with him and he has only quietened down a little recently because he knows i know terrible things about his past and also about his current situation. I dont think he will stay quiet long though.

I just wanted to share a little about me as you may have experienced something similar or at least understand how difficult it is to deal with a narcissist. I am here if you want to share more. I really hope you are ok and have the support of friends or family.

Community Member

Hi Eleven

I’m currently going through something so similar to you but my marriage was 10yrs.

i’ve spent 4 years and a lot of money trying to obtain financial freedom.
I signed a financial agreement that my ex tried to overturn.

I’m now in the court system with good lawyers.

But at every point my ex manages to out-manoeuvre the system through lies and manipulation.

One of the biggest problems is the lag between court dates, and relevance of information by the time you get there.

its slow and costly.

everyone tells me that justice prevails but it’s really hard to believe the system will work the way it’s supposed to.

I see these posts are old but thought I’d touch base anyway.