TIPS ON CO-PARENTING WITH A SOCIOPATH
The key is clear communication with your children about what behaviour and ethics are acceptable and what is not. If they do not want to confide in you, have someone else available, if they are not in therapy.
Never let the sociopath into your home for any reason.
If you are in the marital house, make sure all locks, alarm and garage codes have been changed. Do not give out any personal information about yourself to this other parent. Make it clear to the children that anything at all about you or your shared life with them, is off limits to your ex. They can discuss their school, friends and activities, but not you.
Give your children at least daily hugs and praise. Inform them how much you appreciate them and their achievements because they may not be hearing this from the other parent. I made a big point of volunteering and having my sons do so as well to offset negatives from their father. They learned from an early age to have compassion and give back to animals and the community.
If you are told that your child is not respecting other children and is extremely cruel, this is a red flag.
Since there is a genetic component to antisocial personality disorder, have him evaluated by anexperienced psychiatrist or psychologist in this area. A youngster may be diagnosed with “conduct disorder” and can be helped with therapy. This condition can be a precursor for antisocial personality disorder and early intervention can prevent it from becoming full blown.
In therapy, specific parameters for behaviour are set with certain consequences. Conduct disorder is often diagnosed with juvenile delinquents and is not the same as a little acting out that comes with divorce.
If you or the children are in danger, seek help immediately.
Talk to your solicitor, the police or local abuse shelter.
Do not talk to your ex directly, but rather send businesslike e-mails. Better to use a third party intermediary for communication, such as a mediator.
Visitation can take place at a Contact Centre and if not supervised, have the drop off and pick up away from your home. The main points with co-parenting with sociopaths is to limit your contact and monitor the children’s well-being.
Wendi Schuller is a published author who has conducted classes on various subjects. She draws upon her knowledge as a nurse, Neuro-Linguistic Programmer (NLP), and hypnotherapist, providing a blueprint to guide women through this difficult transition. Schuller hired an attorney for a court divorce, but decided to go the collaborative route instead and has worked with a mediator post-divorce. Her passion is international travel and she devised savvy cost-cutting measures to achieve this dream. Schuller worked in the public schools and observed firsthand the effects of divorce on children. Her aim is to have families experience a smoother divorce, keeping their sanity intact and obtaining the healthiest outcome possible.