Quinn Pierce

Co-parenting and Interactions with the Sociopath After the Divorce

by Quinn Piercequinn pierce photo

I sat on the edge of the stage watching the teams race up and down the court. It was the first game of my son’s basketball tournament. I knew my ex-husband was there, because I saw his car when I pulled into the parking lot.  I wasn’t surprised that he was there, even though he said he wasn’t going.  He often changed his plans last minute, or lied entirely just to avoid giving a difinitive answer and to keep others off balance.

When I saw him standing by the players, I felt a mix of annoyance and disgust that he continues to play the ‘Father of the Year’ role, despite the cruel and un-fatherly behavior he practices behind closed doors.  At least I knew he would not try to interact with me, so I sat comfortably a good distance away and watched my son.

Watching the Sociopath Self-Destruct

by Quinn Pierce quinn pierce blog

The Perpetual Victim

I don’t know how he does it.  It’s a skill he continues to practice and perfect, I suppose. What’s astonishing is his ability to twist any situation- no matter how absurd- into something where he can paint himself as the victim.

Anyone who was even remotely involved in our lives last year would know that my ex-husband reached a new level of vindictive, hurtful behavior.  He manipulated every resource he could access including doctors, courts, school systems, and child services in two states.  It was such a forceful and constant barrage of attacks that I didn’t even have time to collect my thoughts before responding.

And that was his goal all along.

Keeping You Off-Balance

The favorite and most commonly used strategy of my ex-husband is the surprise attack.  He will always do his best to catch me off-guard, or corner me at in-opportune times when I’m distracted or not prepared for what he is doing.

Co-Parenting with a Psychopath: Two Insiders Tell Us What It’s Like

by Quinn Pierce and H.G. Beverly

Quinn Pierce and H.G. Beverly both married and divorced psychopaths. They both have children with these men and are therefore connected to them for life. Here, they share their experiences and advice.

Let’s start with a big, looming question. When and how did you figure out you were with a psychopath?

I had no idea I was married to a sociopath for most of my marriage. But the signs were there—for years, I battled depression, anxiety, feels of worthlessness, and all the classic symptoms of a spouse in an abusive relationship. However, I didn’t know what a sociopath was, nor did I understand that abuse could be anything other than physical; so I rationalized my life, made excuses for my spouse, tried to help my children, and believed I was suffering from depression and anxiety due to my own chemical make-up. It wasn’t until I started seeing a counselor who was well versed in abuse, PTSD, and sociopathy that I was given the pieces of the puzzle that were missing. Ironically, as I became healthy through counseling and a complete overhaul of my medication, my husband’s abusive behaviors escalated. Once I was clear minded and able to recognize the signs, I was stunned to realize how much of my life had been manipulated and controlled.

Helping Children Heal While Co-parenting with a Sociopath

by Quinn Piercequinn pierce blog

I sat on the now familiar, well worn bench outside the courtroom, and I watched the strained faces of the people around me as I waited for our name to be called.  It was our fourth appearance in the family court due to my son’s unexcused absences resulting from an illness the school has yet to acknowledge. The whole process has been exhausting, to say the least, but it’s been made even worse by the carnival-like antics being performed by my ex-husband and his lawyer.

As usual, a situation that should solely be about supporting our child has been turned into another  Look At Me, I’m the Victim one-act play.  It seems that any captive audience lately has become an opportunity for him to perform.

Repeat Performance

Walking In My Shoes: Looking Back Over My Marriage to a Sociopath

by Quinn Piercequinn pierce blog

Not-So-Spring Cleaning

Since my divorce, I have done so much “spring cleaning” of my life, that I’ve given myself a pass on actually cleaning anything this year.  And, as the ice melts away, I will sit idly by with a cup of tea and admire the dust as it collects on my winter clothes that remain taking up precious space in my closet.

The truth is, I don’t have all that many clothes left, especially since I went through several cycles of gaining and losing weight during the end of my marriage and my divorce.  I chose to give away anything that didn’t fit as I cleaned and sorted out my home, and my life, at the time.  It probably was a subconscious act on my part to discard items that held negative memories.  I much prefer starting fresh with a few integral wardrobe pieces in my collection.

Tools of a Sociopath: Using the Silent Treatment to Manipulate and Control

by Quinn PierceQuinn Pierce

A Stifling Silence

One of my ex-husband’s favorite tools of manipulation was the silent treatment.

On the surface, it seemed like a childish ploy to get what he wanted, but in reality, the silent treatment is a behavior abusers use to attack their partner’s vulnerability and self-esteem in order to exert control.

I can clearly see now that my ex-husband took plenty of  time in the beginning of our relationship to assess how I would react to the silent treatment.  It is a skill he practiced and perfected along the way, until the greatest impact was achieved. A sociopath won’t risk losing the relationship, so it was a complicated game he played to keep me off-balance, but not to the point of walking away.

Tracking the False Tears of a Sociopath

by Quinn Piercequinn pierce blog

A Repeat Performance

I looked around the room trying to assess the damage.  With each tear that fell, I could sense a shift in the room.  All I could think was, “Oh great, how can I possible convince this entire group of people that this is an act?  These tears are not real!  These words do not mean anything!  He will leave here and continue to abuse and harass this child he cries for right now!”

Instead, I said nothing.   Such is the reality of having married and divorced a sociopath.  It’s a never ending struggle to maintain my composure when faced with lies, manipulation, deceit, and of course, his repeat performance as the consummate victim.

Minimizing Conflict

Co-Parenting With a Sociopath: Helping My Children Navigate Through the Lies

by Quinn Pierce

quinn pierce blog

A Confused and Anxious Child

My younger son recently returned home from his father’s house looking visibly distressed and anxious.  As we began asking what was wrong, the ever increasing list of possibilities began running through my mind.  I could tell these visits were taking a toll on my son, but he is not yet at the point where he can stand up for himself to his father.  My older son, however, mastered that skill earlier this year, and it has been a source of contention for my ex-husband ever since.

And so, when my son started to explain what transpired the night before, it was no surprise to the rest of us as we listened.  Apparently, someone asked a seemingly innocent question about his brother, and when my son answered, it caused an angry tirade in response from his father, who claimed to have no knowledge what-so-ever of the information.

Divorcing a Sociopath: Redefining Possessions

by Quinn Piercequinn pierce blog

What’s Yours Is Mine…

When teaching preschoolers, it can be very entertaining to watch the children interact according to the inherent set of rules set forth by this age group.

This list of rules may be long, but the rules themselves are very simple:

  • If it’s mine, it’s mine
  • If it’s yours, it’s mine
  • If I like it, it’s mine
  • If I think it’s mine, it’s mine
  • If I can take it from you, it’s mine
  • If it’s broken, it’s your fault…and so on.

 Everything Is His Possession

Interestingly, this is the same set of rules that my ex-husband applied to our divorce.  It became very clear that he considered every object in his life a possession, including people, and he was entitled to each and every one.  It was as if he believed I was trying to steal everything that belonged to him, and I was not deserving of any of it.

Co-Parenting with a Sociopath Should Make the List of the Most Difficult Jobs in the World

by Quinn Pierce quinn pierce blog

Recently, I came across a list of the most difficult jobs in the world.  The top contenders included: U. S. President, UN Negotiator, Prison Warden, and Air Traffic Controller, to name a few.  I don’t argue that these are extremely stressful and challenging career choices, but I believe there is one that should have made the list, even if it isn’t officially considered a career, and requires financial, emotional, and psychological debt rather than income: Co-Parenting with a Sociopath.

A Daily Challenge

As if parenting isn’t challenging enough, trying to navigate the crazy-making, drama-filled world of a sociopath who has the ability to influence and harm your children requires skills rivaling the credentials of world leaders.