4. Questioning the child(ren) about everything that happened with the other parent, including what they ate, where they went, who they saw, etc. and then starting fights with the other parent;
5. Telling the children to record or take photos of the other parent, the house, activities, etc and sending them to the narcissistic parent to file unfounded claims with child protective services;
6. Involving the child(ren) in mental and psychological games, such as planning elaborate vacations or being the parent with no rules or punishments, and comparing everything to the other parent’s ability to plan or provide;
7. Harassing or cyberbullying the other parent’s friends, family, or new romantic partner;
8. Attempts to isolate the child(ren) from seeing anyone the narcissistic parent doesn’t “approve” of, even without reason. This could also include other family members or the other parent’s friends;
9. Insisting on celebrating holidays or special events together “as a family” despite the other parent not agreeing. Even when told no, the narcissistic parent will either show up (“It’s a public event!”) or guilt the children and other parent;
10. Alternately, will try to control other people who show up to events. (“You can come, but your new wife isn’t allowed.”)
11. Telling the children their other parent “won’t allow them” to be a family or spend time together and turning themselves into the suffering victim;
12. Refusing to abide by the custody schedule or rules, such as moving school districts or failing to give notice about taking the child out of state;
13. Changing their schedules or the children’s schedule without consulting with the other parent and telling them of changes at the last minute, forcing the other parent to accommodate and change their schedule;
14. Harassing and cyberbullying the other parent until they give in to demands;
15. Threatening to bankrupt or ruin the other parent;
16. Attempting to seduce the other parent when a new relationship is started;
17. Manipulating text conversations and presenting out-of-context statements to people in order to ruin the other parent’s reputation, friendships, or relationships;
18. Spreading lies and rumors about the other parent or the other parent’s new romantic partner to make themselves look better, sometimes using this to cause problems at work or in court. Narcissistic exes and co-parents have been known to accuse the other parent of drug and alcohol addiction, domestic abuse, rape, and stalking. These unfounded claims do nothing but complicate an already stressful and messy situation and irreparably damage reputations.
Parallel parenting can eventually give way to co-parenting over time, but when a narcissist is involved it is better to never lower your boundaries. The moment that you do, they will sneak back in with the intention of totally destroying your life and everything you have built since the separation.
Want to know more about how you can deal with a narcissistic co-parent? Check this video out below!
The best way to prevent problems is to go no contact or limited contact with your ex-partner and put everything in writing. If you must only communicate via email or text message to have a record of statements and harassment. Be as specific as possible in your custody documents, including ensuring privacy, limited contact, exact times and locations for pick up and drop off, and an explicit holiday schedule.
It is also worth looking into legal orders of protection or restraining orders. If your ex-narcissist is ever within the physical boundaries of your property or yourself, invest in a home security system with cameras to record interactions.