Divorcing A Narcissist: One Mom’s Battle Reviewed By Sandra Shwayder Sanchez
Reviewer Sandra Shwayder Sanchez: Sandra is
a retired attorney and co-founder of a small non-profit publishing
collective: The Wessex Collective with whom she has published two short fiction collections
(A Mile in These Shoes and Three Novellas) and one
Her most recent novel, The Secret of A Long Journey is soon to be released by Floricanto Press in April 2012 and her first novel, The Nun, originally published by Plain View Press in 1992 is being Â reissued in a 2nd Edition with additional material by PVP in March 2012.
View all articles by Sandra Shwayder Sanchez
Author: Tina Swithin
Praised by attorneys, doctors and celebrities, Divorcing a Narcissist, is an important book that took courage as well as insight to write. In her impressive introduction the author explains her goal:
“My face is just one of many faces in this battle. My story is your story and your story is mine. The accounts I hear from other women are so similar to mine that I have often questioned if we were all married to the same man. Once I realized that I was not alone, things began to shift, and I found my inner strength. I soon realized that beyond the madness of this battle is a purpose. There is a purpose to unite those with similar past experiences and together protect our children and ourselves from the effects of divorcing a narcissist.
My ultimate goal is twofold. My desire to protect my daughters is the driving force that prompted this mission. Ultimately I want to become an advocate for change in the Family Court System. . . . . There were many times when I questioned why all of this was happening to me. I now believe that everything does happen for a reason. . . . If I am able to educate the public, the media and the Family Court System through my work than I have accomplished my ultimate goal of protecting my daughters and bringing change and awareness to the system.” (p. 12)
After a childhood made difficult by the divorce of her parents and the mental illness and drug addiction of her mother, the author struggled through relationships that did not work and then sought therapy to set herself on track. But learning about hypothetical problem situations by discussing them is not he same as learning from first hand experience and, after and despite therapy, the author fell into a relationship with a charming narcissist, married him and had two children with him before embarking on the court battle to protect herself and her daughters from the man she ultimately perceived as dangerous. She applies an astute analysis to the descriptions of events which she calls “red flags”, things she should have understood at the time and this is instructive to readers.
Later she introduces something called the Narc De Coder to translate the real meanings behind the narcissist’s lies. And she concludes with tips for readers enmeshed in similar situations. While she is not a psychiatrist or an attorney and points this out, she has applied her obviously considerable intelligence to a complex situation and these tips are grounded in that wisdom that only first hand experience can impart. I highly recommend this book not only to women facing similar experiences but to young women who can benefit from those red flags before they fall into similar situations. I also recommend this book to attorneys, judges, GALs and social workers in the Family Court and Juvenile Court Systems.
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