Advice for getting through a divorce

My husband was a bully when I was married to him and he continues to try to bully me even though we are divorced. He’s self-centered and it’s always about him. He has no conscience and I’m not sure he even knows what love is; and on top of it all, he is a master manipulator. He was tough to deal with back then and worse now, especially using the kids as pawns. I can’t seem to get him to see things logically. Any tips?

I don’t quite know how to say this other than, “Wake up and smell the coffee!” He will never see things logically, he will only see things through the eyes of his own world, which most of the time is not how the majority of the world sees them. He is a narcissist. Here are some tidbits about a narcissist:

• He doesn’t accept responsibility for his actions and believes he is justified in acting the way he does because others make him act that way.

• He thinks there is nothing wrong with him and the finger is always pointed at someone else.

• He is all about control and it doesn’t matter what you do or give up; he doesn’t want peace, he wants control.

• He believes that you don’t have the right to defy them; and if you do, you become an adversary.

Watch out! You will see a side that makes you do a double-take, a true Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. His unending distortions of reality called “crazy making” will leave you totally confused and questioning yourself. He will suck the life out of you. And then he will be Mr. Charming to others. Your self-esteem will be greatly affected and you will always feel off balance. He will use guilt to control you and be great at turning things around. And the list goes on and on. Here are some suggestions to help you when faced with this type of person:

• This is not about you, it is about them; this is their issue.

• Don’t challenge or try to enlighten him; it will be futile and leave you frustrated beyond reason.

• Take control as much as you can so you cut him out as much as possible; be aware of areas of conflict and avoid them.

• Set boundaries; be matter-of-fact and take all the emotion out of your dealings with him.

• Accept that there is only so much you can control; make your own life with your children and detach from your ex’s life.

Here’s a little insider info that should help you ignore his words and behavior. Narcissists are men with fragile egos and they do what they do out of fear of losing control or being exposed for who they are. Now, knowing that, doesn’t it make you feel more empowered?

Note to Self:
Today I will take control of my life and have inner peace.

Debbie’s Library:
Why Does He Do That? By Lundy Bancroft; Why is it Always About You? By Sandy Hotchkiss

Debbie Martinez is a Certified Divorce Life Coach. She has given workshops on divorce and women’s issues and has offices in South Miami. For more information, call 305-984-5121 or go to

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