Donald Trump is the narcissist’s narcissist. He would be classified as both an exhibitionist narcissist and a devaluing narcissist* and he has shown the damage that a narcissist can wreak.
While Trump may be an extreme example, narcissistic personality disorder is an increasingly recognised trait in the UK which means more and more partners are coming up against such behaviour when they seek a divorce or separation.
A new book due out in February - Divorcing a Narcissist: The lure, the loss and the law - tackles this growing problem. Combining professional expertise and legal know how, it explains why the superficial charm of a narcissist can be so alluring, how a narcissist will use their narcissism to make it so difficult to break up and how they will set about manipulating the divorce processes and the lawyers involved to wreak havoc during the divorce. It then sets out life-changing advice - both legal and personal - on how to counter these manoeuvres so that the reader can reach the other side ready to move on to their new life.
One of the authors, Dr Supriya McKenna, is a former GP, who has moved on from general practice after noticing that an increasing number of people needed help and coaching to get themselves through what can be a traumatic time.
"Narcissistic patterns of behaviour are all around us, if you know what you are looking for. Of course, you see narcissists in politics, and in positions of power generally, and the havoc they wreak on individuals and on whole societies is profound. But most narcissists are not so easy to spot. On the surface they can be shy and self effacing. They can be quietly charming and charitable, hiding behind a mask of affability. The narcissist next door, or the narcissist sleeping in your bed, covertly manipulating others to their detriment. The important point is that once you recognise these patterns, you can accurately predict further behaviour and protect yourself from it.
Nowhere do you see innocent people fall foul of narcissists more frequently than when a relationship breaks down. Having seen this pattern repeat itself many times, I felt compelled to try to better educate individuals and their family lawyers about these personalities, so that they can better work together and shield themselves from the worst of what’s to come. It seems that Narcissistic Personality Disorder is not only here to stay, but is on the increase, so there’s never been a better time to move away from the myths and properly understand and recognise it."
Her co-author, Karin Walker is a renowned family lawyer who has been at the sharp end of advising in many painful divorces involving narcissistic behaviour:
‘An understanding of the issues created or faced by our clients makes us, as family law professionals, better able to provide an exceptional level of service and add value in a difficult situation. Narcissism is increasingly more prevalent in our work. I was inspired to co-write this publication to help raise awareness and provide clear and accessible support and guidance, both to the members of my profession and those whom we advise.’
NOTES FOR EDITORS
*The four types of narcissist
It is commonly accepted that there are four major ways that those with Narcissistic Personality Disorder present themselves to the outside world: the Exhibitionist Narcissist, the Closet Narcissist, the Devaluing Narcissist and the Communal Narcissist. Whilst those with NPD will present predominantly in one of these ways, some overlap is possible, depending on the situation the narcissist finds themselves in, and what works well for them in that situation.
● The Exhibitionist Narcissist is: superficially charming; the affable buffoon; magnanimous entrepreneur; big personalities; winning smiles; sense of entitlement;
● The Closet Narcissist is: mild mannered and meek; insecure but warm; plays the victim; need to feel special by association; preoccupied with status; afraid to be the centre of attention; sense of entitlement
● The Devaluing Narcissist: devalues, criticises, and demeans others in order to inflate themselves; jealous and envious of others; puts down the other party; name calling, criticisms, badmouthing and ridiculing
● The Communal Narcissist: gives to others publicly; does good works and deeds; prides themselves on being ‘nice’; sees themselves as the most generous, the most caring, the most kind; can be territorial; is abusive behind closed doors
About the books
Divorcing a Narcissist: The lure, the loss and the law will be published in February by Bath Publishing. It is available for sale directly on the publisher’s website and through Amazon, Waterstones and other major online and High Street retailers.
£20 - ISBN 978-1-9163023-6-5 - paperback, pdf and epub formats
A companion book - Narcissism & Family Law: A Practitioner's Guuide - will also be published in February by Bath Publishing. This book provides advice aimed more at the legal advisers acting in a difficult divorce involving narcissists. Again it is available for sale directly on the publisher’s website and through Amazon, Waterstones and other major online and High Street retailers.
£40 - ISBN 978-1-9163023-3-4 - paperback and pdf
Dr Supriya McKenna is a qualified doctor and practised as a GP before concentrating on coaching, mentoring and supporting those involved in relationships with highly narcissistic individuals, including in the area of separation and divorce. She advises professionals dealing with clients who have been affected by narcissists, and has hands-on experience of the UK Family Court system.
Karin Walker is the founding partner at KGW Family Law and is a solicitor, mediator, collaborative practitioner and arbitrator. She is recognised by both the Legal 500 and Chambers and Partners as a leader in her field and is a former Chair of the National DR Committee of Resolution.
Both authors are available for an interview to discuss the topic and the issues around divorce more generally. In the first instance contact the publisher - David Chaplin - on 01225 577810 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Listen to the author’s podcast
The authors have produced a podcast introducing the problems raised by narcissists in divorce proceedings. You can listen to it hear: https://www.buzzsprout.com/1635478
About Bath Publishing
Bath Publishing is an independent legal publisher of accessible, affordable law books for both professionals and those who get caught up in legal proceedings and want to know more. Their full list can be seen on their website at www.bathpublishing.com.
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