NARCISSISTIC ABUSE RECOVERY
Will I Ever Be Free of You?: How to Navigate a High-Conflict Divorce from a Narcissist and Heal Your Family
Karyl McBride Ph.D.
Will I Ever Be Free of You? does a wonderful job of walking the reader through the impact of recovering from a narcissistic romantic relationship, with a heavy focus on divorces and partnership separations. Special attention is paid to navigating caring for children through this process, though the book would be equally useful for those without children. Because being romantically involved with a narcissist involves a heavy amount of gaslighting, it can be gratifying to learn that the abusive tactics that you may be experiencing/have experienced are universal in these types of relationships. Recognizing that commonality can be soothing, and serve as a reminder that . . . it’s not you . . . it’s them. The additional emphasis on how to deal with the divorce/separation process and how to protect children to the best of your ability in that process, elevates this book from a source of comfort to an easy to follow guide to your high-conflict divorce/separation.
TRIGGER WARNING: If you are early on in your recovery process, it could be triggering to read some of the stories included of others suffering through narcissistic relationships. Though I think the book can be very helpful, I invite you to notice where you are in your healing before diving in.
How narcissism impacts the family system: “The narcissist does not feel secure enough to allow each individual in the family to have his or her own sense of self, beliefs, decisions, and separate interests. They expect all family members’ lives to revolve around them, and they ignore other people’s needs or desires. There is no sense of community or individuality. Their needs rule.”
Keeping children healthy during divorce: “As children adjust to divorce, they tend to mirror their parents’ emotions. So the better you deal with the changes, the better the children will do. If a parent is stuck in anger, a child is likely to be stuck there too. The same goes for the other emotional stages of divorce.”
Narcissists and the family court system: “The narcissist does not play well with others. He or she does not necessarily follow rules, laws, and court orders. Unfortunately, you may find little support or understanding about what you are dealing with. Especially in the beginning, the professionals – attorneys, judges, parenting-time evaluators, and others – may assume that both of you are unbalanced and creating unnecessary and time-consuming problems.”