Responding to Ludicrous Narcissistic Requests

There are serious considerations to how I may want to respond to my ex’s request of horseback riding lessons in exchange for a psychological evaluation for our son, however, at the moment, I have to infuse a little light hearted perspective with serious considerations.

Possible options on how I may respond to my ex’s email:

1. Dearest beloved ex,  are you kidding me?  Who in their right mind would even send such an email?  Do you remember when you were holding our daughter and she was about 1 years old, it was raining and you were holding the umbrella over your head only and leaving her in the rain?  Well… this is the same thing.  The umbrella needs to be rightfully placed over our son’s head, and you need to be left in the rain.  Best of luck.

  • (okay, clearly this is a facetious, although delightfully desired response). 

2. Dear ex, I offered make up times to you already and you didn’t take them.  I am delaying horse back riding until our son is eight.  He is 5 and weighs a mere 42 pounds.  Even a pony weighs a good 8-12x what he weighs.  I feel that he needs to conquer attending kindergarten before learning how to ride a horse.  ABCs and 123s first.   Heck, let’s just try to get him to get himself dressed every morning before we ask him to control the behavior of a 500 pound beast with a small brain.  

  • (Slightly facetious, yes …. but also – this is defending myself against his accusations, which puts me directly into his camp and lands me right into his hand… seriously… that’s where he wants me to land.  He’s trying to distract me to unrelated issues and succeeding).

3.Dear ex, the only thing I am “required” to do is to follow the court order and ask for your cooperation.  Our parenting agreement says we need to have the other’s approval for non-emergency medical care, and that it should not be unreasonably withheld.  Since you are withholding such, I am now required to file yet another motion with the court to ask them to assign the therapist, since you won’t cooparent cooperatively. 

  • (again… find the chinese finger trap and do not locate the send button.  While this is closer, it’s emotion filled and threatening, and after all, my kids are in his care this week, so I need to keep him as calm as possible for their sake.)

4. Dear ex, I understand that you have concerns about the items on your list, and will address them separately.  Since the requests are unrelated to a psychological evaluation for our son to determine what is going on with him emotionally, we can decouple them from each other.  I sincerely hope that you will work with me to support our son’s needs and move forward with the evaluation asap. 

  • (okay, this is closer, and possible the right general approach.  It doesn’t put me in ‘defense’ mode by defending my actions which he is asking me to change, but it does display empathy and consideration for him, which he craves.  Narcissists, particularly pathological level NPDs, are very apt at pointing the finger at you and making you defend yourself, when in fact the finger should be firmly pointed at him.  It’s also a way of creating chaotic confusion, which is another tactic of emotional abuse / verbal abuse – a component of ‘gaslighting”.  By staying focused only on the issues at hand, it helps to keep him from diverting attention to other issues which he is stating is more important.

5.  No response.

  • Due to the fact that my kids are in his care – I seriously will wait to talk with my attorney and potentially not respond at all or until Friday of this week.  This is just as strong of a response in that it sends the message to him that he can’t to me.  He is acting out of desperation to keep the evaluation from occurring, so he is likely internally looking for my response and when there isn’t one, it will bother him.   Regardless of how it makes him feel.. it makes me feel great.  I am in control, the power of how I respond to him BELONGS TO ME.  Yippee!

15 Responses to “Responding to Ludicrous Narcissistic Requests”

  1. heather says:

    I got the order of protection when he threatened me physically and threatened to kidnap our two young daughters after leaving them in a car with no ventilation and no shade for about 20-30 minutes last summer in 91 degree weather. His second wife also had to get an OP against him for threats. His first wife was too scared because he shot and killed her dog at the end of their marriage. I’m actually kind of concerned that this OP is expiring in a month but am hoping that the expiration might reduce some of his anger and narcissistic injury.

    • Any chance that you can get an extension on the OP? It sounds like it’s not a family order of protection, since the kids are still seeing him? Each state does these in different ways (and federally there is a bill out there that will lesson the protection of domestic violence victims if passed by senate).

  2. heather says:

    After a year, I’m finally able to emotionally manage myself so that he doesn’t get me pissed off with the craziness. We went to our first co-parenting session last month. ON my list to talk about?

    1) Who pays for the uniforms for the school he picked out that I’m paying 100% tuition for (he’s hiding income in his business and claims he makes 8K a year).
    2) holidays
    3) kid’s activities.

    On his list?

    Trust.

    We spend 20 minutes on my list. We get to his list. He states: “In order for me to trust this process and move it in a positive direction, I’ll need Ms. C (he calls me by my last name) to grant my 50/50% custody and drop her order of protection by the end of the session today.”

    Wow. ROFLMAO.

    • It’s awesome that you are seeing it as it is now. It was a long journey for me to get to that point – and it sounds like you’ve done so in a much shorter amount of time. My attorney used to tell me to get a chinese finger trap and leave it on my computer to keep me from responding to my ex’s emails. I still find myself initially reacting emotionally and defensively, but if I can find the pause, I can then look at it objectively and more as a study in interesting psychology. Which makes me wonder… what the (*&% did your ex really think would happen in that meeting with his request? Geez.

    • Stacey says:

      AH! he sounds JUST LIKE MY EX! He’s all about trust and how i’ve betrayed him and if he can’t trust me then there is NO way he can work with me…Seriously? not even for the sake of your children, huh? well I guess thats up to you. Dummy.

      • I am LMAO. You’re so funny, Stacey. Heather – I forgot to say while in my serious mode. I get the “trust” conversation too. Must be one of those found in the “how to have narcissistic personality disorder” book.

  3. Stacey says:

    I feel like you could relate to this
    http://lookingforward2012.wordpress.com/2012/08/14/unprompted-crazy/
    Good luck to you. I know its hard, wanting to do right by your kids, and still navigating the mine field of crazy that your ex is.

    • Hi! Thanks for the link – definitely can relate. Love how she kept a completely unemotional response!

      • Stacey says:

        unemotional is the key – they are so wound up, they want everyone to be in the same chaotic state they are in.

    • heather says:

      So the balancing act I’m trying is how to manipulate him so that I don’t need an OP. The OP was extremely useful and important and kept him in line early on. However the payment it that it — along with the child abuse charge — was a huge Narcissistic injury – not just to him but to his entire family (all flaming cult of personality narcissists, except the sister and the mother – who are sadly quite borderline). I got new windows and am planning to get new doors.

      Has anyone learned useful tricks to manipulate their narcissist? It’s all ego, right? So just feeding their ego bunches of ego inflating BS should theoretically work. I’ve actually tried the basic tact of being kind (doesn’t work – invites abuse) but get no response at all when I do kind with ego boosting statements and the girls come back all sorts of better when I send those ego-boosting e-mails. I just need to let go of my ego enough to do this. Also trying to not react at all to the dramatic bullshit. Every time I’ve dragged the man into court, it’s been about removing a talon. Most recently we forced him to get medicaid for the kids so that I don’t have to worry about co-pays.

      As much as I hate my situation, I feel a combination of quite free and pity for him and his brood of relatives that are all Axis 2 personality.

      My ex just wrote that he “forfeited” his “rights” to our children for two weeks while traveling (totally not the right thing to do but it works for me when he goes to increase that custody, so I’ll take it. But I had to laugh at the commend “surrender’ the children. THey really don’t exist to this people as humans, do they?

  4. Grace says:

    Sorry to bombard with today-but I loved that as soon as I commented the following gem landed in my inbox. Thought you’d enjoy:

    (in response to me sending my weekly confirmation of that week’s parenting time…because he travels so extensively he’s routinely not available, but doesn’t give me notice until the day before)

    me: confirm that you have the kids this week from x:00 on *date* to x:00 on *date*

    him: yes. also, you need to surrender the children to me at my home per the decree

    me (after grabbing my handy-dandy copy of our decree and triple checking before replying): per page x, section y of our decree, the kids are picked up and dropped off by you at my home

    him (remember my earlier comment about tantrums?): You are wrong. We can deal with this at our appointment today (we are meeting with our parenting coordinator). No one parent is made to do 100% of the transportation. ARE YOU CRAZY?

    me: No response, because THE DECREE CLEARLY STATES HE PICKS UP AND DROPS OFF, and if he didn’t consult it before, and obviously didn’t look at it after I quoted it, what would I gain by trying to reason?

    Just wanted you to know you’re not alone 🙂 And I’m heading into an hour-long appointment that will consist of him trying to badger, bully, and control all of the parts of my life he can no longer control. But if I waste an hour of my life every six weeks or so (we go in to see her whenever he feels I’m in the wrong…which is funny because I follow the decree TO THE LETTER and she doesn’t have authority to change it or make me go against it), it’s still better than living with a guy that did this to me daily.

    This is when I look at my amazing husband (we’re newlyweds) and thank my lucky stars.

    • I “love” how they try to write and re-write the orders and decrees to whatever suits them best. Having a rock solid, detailed order/agreement/decree is so essential in these situations. Sorry that you have to endure the parent coordinator route. I’ve had two for us in the past. The first eventually lied on the stand in court (multiple lies) and did a 360 against me/for ex (I wonder if he was bought off). The second was assigned by the court, but never used. I didn’t initiate it because it seems that the least amount of contact is really better, as long as my kids are safe.

      Also – the words your ex uses …”surrender the children”. Amazing how they are all so alike. “the children” (i.e. objects) and “surrender” (possession). Fascinating.

      Thanks for the dialog – I welcome it. Helps so much to maintain sanity!

  5. Grace says:

    4 is closest to what I would do.

    I follow the BIFF model in replying to anyone that is high conflict.

    http://m.psychologytoday.com/blog/stop-walking-eggshells/201012/responding-hostile-emails-high-conflict-personalities-0

    It’s also what my husband follows when dealing with his bipolar (diagnosed) ex wife.

    I would drop the rope on every accusation and keep it factual and unemotional. I think you’re exactly right to not allow him to muddy the water by responding to a psychological need with unrelated issues like activity approval or parenting time requests.

    This is where it gets fun…having the upper hand and able to show what a dummy he is by writing smart, appropriate, businesslike emails. Then they start to tantrum, and if you can stay unemotional, it’s fun to watch.

    • I haven’t yet responded to that email from him, even though I saw him yesterday when seeing my kids for lunch while he has them. I like the article – I have books from Randi Kreger about divorcing a narcissist – very helpful. Also using “I” language is particularly helpful. Thank you!


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