Print Posted By on 07/06/2017

Divorce and ASPD

Divorce and ASPD


Getting through divorce can be incredibly difficult and draining if it is not an amicable one which is normally the case.  What can make it even more difficult is divorcing someone with an ASPD (anti-social personality disorder).  Most often people don't realize they are being abused unless it is done physically.  Emotional abuse can sometimes be obvious but the most damaging is when it is so subtle that it is difficult to detect:  Especially, to others outside of the abusive relationship.  Even worse, It can be very complicated for the abused themselves to see it as well, leaving one questioning and stripped of their self worth, esteem, trust, sanity and dignity.

I recommend anyone divorcing a person that fits the profile of any ASPD to research the different types, such as NPD (narcissistic personality disorder), BPD (borderline personality disorder), Sociopathy, and Psychopathy to name a few before any other steps taken.  To understand how they operate, their thinking process is very different than normally.  Dealing with these types of individuals needs a very customized method to have a successful outcome in court.  Having a divorce lawyer that has experience in defending against people with ASPD is a great asset.  At the very least make your lawyer very well aware of what type of person you are dealing with.  It is crucial that you be prepared to deal with a master manipulator that will use several tactics to twist the case against you and portray themselves as a victim.  

In court, it is not an option to accuse someone of having any of these disorders, it will only make you appear unstable by accusing them of an undiagnosed condition.  You have to learn to play their game and be steps ahead of them. 

I can use an example of my experience during my divorce.  I was once married to a man that is a perfect representation of high functioning psychopath.  I didn't know at the time of this disorder as a label but over the years I learned through many events that he was always out to win no matter what and who he hurt.  I had to learn how he thought cognitively and constantly remind myself he has no trace of empathy.  (You must leave out all negative emotions in order to be successful.  To them, emotions are weaknesses and that is what will be under attack. They will use them to make you appear unstable and if they succeed in this it creates evidence in their favour.  You must stay strong and not let them get to you).  One particular statement my ex made in court was that I was unfaithful during our marriage.  This being the furthest from the truth.  He told the judge that I moved in a man into our home while we were still together and with our three children.  He manipulated a situation which he created with additional lies and then declared that he and our children were openly exposed to this affair. 

My ex had previously brought up this incident to the children's lawyer and when they were questioned it was discovered that their father had coached them what to say, but the children did tell their lawyer that it wasn't the truth. 

My ex took an incident and manipulated it in court.  This is what had actually happened:

A family friend of ours had split with his wife on a Christmas Eve.  He called our house with the bad news and came over to talk.  I was home but my ex was out at the time.  The friend was very depressed and sad.  I invited him to stay with us until he could find somewhere to live.  He turned down the invitation due to feelings he had towards me.  I didn't have a clue of this nor did I have any interest in a romantic relationship with him.  I agreed that it would be very awkward and uncomfortable to have him in our home knowing this.  I told my ex about his situation, my offer to have him stay and the mutual agreement between the friend and me that it wouldn't be a comfortable situation for any of us.  

Right then my ex saw an opportunity! Without my consent he took it upon himself to call our friend and insisted on him staying in our home.  He told him (which our friend already knew) that we were separated anyway so it wasn't a big deal.  He had gone on to say if a relationship developed between the friend and me and gave him his blessing because the children already knew and liked him.  All in all he would not take "no" for an answer and told him he discussed it with me (which he didn't) and that I was fine with it.  I didn't learn of the all details of their conversation until much later.  I certainly didn't appreciate being thrown into this awkward position, not to mention my ex was trying to pass me onto our mutual friend.  At the same time I felt sorry for our friend and thought It would be manageable for a short while by keeping my distance.  

After awhile, my ex stated that he was moving out. He had a place lined up and would not need to take much of household items.  His departure was very quick and very puzzling, leaving the children and I with our friend living in the house.   

Not long after I was served with divorce papers.  During one of our court appearances, he told the judge I was having an affair, that I moved a man in and carried on a relationship in front of him and our children in our house.  (This caused a flashback I will later mention.)

Luckily, I had documentation of rent cheques and other expenses that the mutual friend paid to my ex, along with copies, from the friend of emails and text messages he had between the two of them that proved a long standing friendship.  I also had a mutual written agreement of our separation which was signed by the both of us two years prior to this incident proving we were not even together.  The evidence I collected was enough to make it obvious this was an attempt to defame my character all to avoid paying spousal support.  The judge didn't believe him, denied his request and said spousal support should indeed be part of the agreement. 

I told my lawyer to ask for a recess before agreeing to this order.  As we discussed my lawyer told me I should go ahead and take the support.  As we were talking I told him of the flashback I had of a time when I walked in my parents house and my ex was unexpectedly there having a conversation with my parents, brother and sister-in-law, claiming that I was having this open bizarre affair.  With this lie he had managed to turn my own family against me, which wasn't difficult and being personality disordered himself he observed from the very beginning of our relationship that I was already the scapegoat in a narcissistic family.  A perfect situation for him.  It hit me like a bolt of lightening.  I, now understood his entire motive.  I thought he brought up this manipulated story because he was trying to get out of paying spousal support.  It wasn't for financial reasons, that was not a concern for him, it was to keep his image with the families intact.  He created so much focus with this lie that the fact he had neglected and had no contact with our children became an unimportant issue.   He was using it as a distraction from his issues.  

After some thought, I came up with a counter plan by refusing to receive spousal support, however, adding its amount to the child support.  The children would be in receipt of support for hopefully more years if I could request it longer than the length of time I might be getting spousal support. Plus, child support is tax free (where I live), and spousal support is not.

When back in court, the judge agreed and ordered him to pay the extra child support until the children turned 18 or until they are done with post secondary education.  I requested that it be documented in the agreement with the exact details of the request.  This way there was record of spousal support to be paid but was substituted into the support for our children.  The spousal support would have been calculated upon and equal to the number of years we were married.  Child support would indeed be significantly longer so that ended up to be a great benefit for my children.

In addition to my example, it is important during questioning one with ASPD that the structure of the questions be asked specifically to catch them in their own lies.  Obviously, lying is what they WILL do.  A good approach for an example,  is to begin questioning with words such as, "Isn't it true that you...(ie) think it's good for the children have a relationship with both parents?"  Then, if there are times where his actions oppose his answer, then ask questions related to incidences that shows his opposing actions.  For example, situations where they may have neglected to pick up their children for their visits.  Documentation with dates, times etc again is necessary to confirm he/she is not telling the truth.  Once this is established then his/her credibility in court is crushed.  

Always remember, If you don't discredit them using the truth, they will discredit you using lies.  

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