Narcissism in Parental Alienation: Clarifying Examples

Narcissism Parental Alienation

—When my father had cancer and was nearing the end of his life, I sometimes had to miss my parenting times to take my father to cancer treatments. My ex would never switch my hours or allow makeup time. She had zero empathy for my father or me and never accommodated my situation.

—With $700 a month taken out of my check for child support, it has been hard to support myself, even living with my parents. Finally, I had to file for chapter 7 bankruptcy. I was behind on a lot of bills, including some of my daughter’s medical bills. My ex didn’t care. She just told me it’s my fault. Again, zero empathy for my situation. Instead of trying to be helpful, she filed charges against me for not paying the bills.

—When my daughter was 3 years old, I did a Google search using the name her mother had given her. I was shocked to find that my child had been baptized at a few months old. My ex never told me. Normal people discuss life events with the co-parent and invite them to share the moment. I would not have objected. I just want to be part of my daughter’s life. Again, zero regard for my concerns.

—We had to meet with a mediator to try to negotiate. My wife would not agree to any compromises. When I gave her something she wanted, she never reciprocated. She just went on as if nothing had been given to her. 

—Whenever she can find a way, my ex interferes with my time with our child. For instance, she comes early to pick up our child when it’s my parenting time. She also goes to my daughter’s friends’ birthday parties during my time and monopolizes my daughter’s attention. 

—This year, after my child opened her Christmas gifts, she started crying, saying she wanted to go back to her mom. I asked why. She said, “I don’t want to be with you.” This was very upsetting. It seems as if my wife is winning her campaign to eliminate me.

Want to know more about narcissism and parental alienation? Check this video out below:

Narcissism and parental alienation

Understanding the Risks of Parental Alienation and Narcissism

Under the sole care of a parent who exhibits extreme narcissistic behaviors, children’s normal needs to feel seen, heard, and responded to maybe frequently frustrated and placed behind what the narcissistic parent wants. Therapists refer to this kind of parent-child relationship as pathological enmeshment. 

Alienated children develop high rates of depression, anger, anxiety, drugs, and alcohol, and relationship difficulties. Psychologist Jennifer Harman and others conclude from a summary of extensive research that alienation is one of the very most harmful forms of child abuse. 

At the same time, Harman’s article suggests that alienation should be considered a form of family violence because of how it impacts the co-parent. Learn here techniques for coping with the emotional roller-coaster provoked by the narcissistic behaviors of an alienating co-parent.

Related: 13 Signs Of A Toxic Parent

Thank you, Jeffrey, for sharing your experiences with us.

Jeffrey recently wrote to me again. “The last 5 years have been rough. My ex keeps convincing the court that I am a liar and a bad father. I still hope though that eventually the court will see the truth.”

I hope so, too!

Susan Heitler, PhD author of Prescriptions Without Pills: For Relief from Depression, Anger, Anxiety and More

For more resources on the topic of alienation, see

Written By Susan Heitler
Originally Appeared In Psychology Today

When you find your ex being narcissist, and is trying very hard to alienate you from your child, then try to shut it down as hard as you can. Sometimes it’s easier said than done, but if you don’t fight against this then you are at risk of losing your child forever. Hang in there and fight it out to the best of your ability.

Narcissism Parental Alienation pin
Narcissism in Parental Alienation: Clarifying Examples
Narcissism in Parental Alienation pin
Narcissism in Parental Alienation: Clarifying Examples
Scroll to Top