Separation or divorce from a Cluster B, Psychopath, Narcissist or Sociopath – in my professional and personal experience, the terminology doesn’t matter – the process and legal intricacies are the same. Know that regardless of the terminology, you will be uncoupling your life from a very dangerous man, a psychopath. These people are emotional vampires, and they are all defined by similar characteristics. They all wear “masks,” have no real true identity or “ego,” they are master manipulators and pathological liars, and they all have no real capacity for empathy. Without empathy, this entails that they have no moral conscience, and they are incapable of love, intimacy, or reciprocity.
In my years of legal and personal experience, I have never witnessed an instance of fidelity or concern from a psychopath. I also usually use “he,” instead of “she,” in my blog writing about psychopaths and sociopaths because of the simple fact that most of these pathologically disordered individuals are males.
According to the most recent Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, which is the Fifth Edition, there are several disorders within the Cluster B Personality Disorders category, ten to be exact, and antisocial personality disorder, narcissism, and borderline personality disorder are the most common ones we can recognize.
In my book, and as many experts view it, all of these Cluster B personality-disordered individuals are psychopaths. Sociopathy is not a real clinical term, but a term more used in pop culture and mainstream media to encompass psychopaths.
What Makes a Psychopath?
Psychopaths are impulsive, very dramatic, unpredictable, and they lack morality. This means that they are always on a quest for power and typically, cannot tolerate being alone. They all wear “masks,” which are fragile images of the outward appearance that they want others to see. For example, the “person” I left was a covert narcissist with antisocial traits.
Covert narcissists depict a sense of shyness, altruism, and sensitivity, but they are wolves in sheep’s clothing! They are extremely damaging and do their dirty work in private, under the radar of our detection. See Dr. George Simon’s awesome book on these types. They are emotionally and verbally abusive, using covert manipulation methods such as gaslighting, deflection, blame-shifting, and victim shaming.
Psychopathy is a pathology, meaning that it is a lifelong disease, which courses through the brain and physiology of the disordered individual. I am a firm believer that the pathology is not only shaped through a series of traumatic events in the pathologically disordered individual’s life, but he is born with a brain that is systemically wired differently than a normal non-disordered individual’s brain.
How to Leave a Narcissist or Psychopath
Divorcing a narcissist or psychopath or leaving one is really the only way to reclaim your sanity. You will heal, and you will recover. It will not be easy, but it is more than doable. You will regain your equilibrium once you come out of this fog.
I have helped women leave these abusive relationships many, many times, and I have helped them obtain favorable custody orders and settlement terms. The process is not like divorcing a normal person, and it can be a very harrowing process, but in my experience, the alternative is a lifelong death sentence.
You need to find an attorney that is extremely knowledgeable in the intricacies of psychopathy and can understand that settling is very difficult. Your attorney needs to be able to help you stay focused and help you find good mental health help. I recommend reading materials by the Institute for Relational Harm Reduction and Public Pathology Education. This group literally saved my life. Leaving these types of relationships will entail healing from trauma.
You will most likely experience a host of symptoms that include cognitive dissonance (holding two conflicting beliefs at the same time), trauma bonding or addiction, depression and anxiety, and an inability to focus or concentrate on anything other than the psychopath. You will most likely have post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or complex post-traumatic stress disorder from long-term exposure to something completely unnatural.
Our bodies and brains are not built to withstand prolonged exposure to psychopathy, and our natural fight/flight abilities become distorted. It’s okay. I assure you that you will find healing, and you will recover, but recovery can only begin once you escape the abuse. There are many of us who have been through this, and so many of us have dedicated our lives to helping others like you.
Are you ready to get a divorce? Contact Keithley Law, PLLC, PLLC today by calling (703) 454-5147and schedule an initial consultation in our Fairfax law office with one of our Virginia divorce attorneys. We can walk you through the steps to get the most out of your divorce.