How Does a Personality Disorder Affect Child Custody?

If your spouse suffers from a personality disorder, you may struggle with their mood swings, threats and manipulation. If you have children, you may worry about their wellbeing, especially after you separate from or divorce your spouse. 

Will a personality disorder affect your spouse’s rights to child custody? That depends on many factors.

10 Personality Disorders That May Affect Your Divorce & Custody

There are 10 specific types of personality disorders that exist today. Each is included inside a cluster that aligns with their specific characteristics and symptoms. The types of personality disorders include:

  1. Antisocial
  2. Avoidant
  3. Borderline
  4. Dependent
  5. Histrionic
  6. Narcissistic
  7. Obsessive-compulsive
  8. Paranoid
  9. Schizoid
  10. Schizotypal

Each of these disorders may affect your divorce. For example, an individual with a narcissistic personality disorder likely will lie and try to distort the reality of your situation. As a result, they’ll refuse to show up for court and communicate effectively to move the process forward. Unfortunately, this can delay the process and increase court costs.

Child Custody: Proof of a Personality Disorder Is Required

One of the main concerns our clients in these situations share with us is this: Will my spouse receive custody of my children? The court must do what’s best for your child. If your spouse’s disorder will cause danger to the child, the court will consider it when creating a custody plan.

In court, however, everything needs proof. It’s common for angry spouses to allege personality issues and disorders in the heat of the divorce. The judge presiding over your divorce case will need proof that a personality disorder exists.

Most of the time, the court will require an official diagnosis from a physician. It’s also important to keep track of incidents that illustrate your spouse’s behavior. For example, you might record an argument you had that resulted in threats. Or you might record your spouse’s obsessive-compulsive actions.

An attorney can determine what evidence is required and do what it takes to obtain it. In some cases, they can gather medical records or even seek out reliable witnesses to your spouse’s behavior.

Not Sure Where to Go From Here? Call Us for Help.

A skilled attorney who understands how to work with individuals struggling with personality disorders can help you through your divorce. Although challenging, it’s far from impossible to move on. Let us help. To learn more, give us a call at 817-789-4436 or send us a message.