Are the effects of living with a narcissistic parent worse on children than the effects of divorce?
Yes, i would say it would be worse, as the children could pick
up his behaviour, it would be better for them to see the father on
a less regular basis. But there is no way of knowing the outcome of
either decision until it has been done, trust your instincts, if
they say go, then go. Whether he is actually a narcissist or not
doesn't matter here, as if you believe he is, then you are not
happy -but don't stop him from seeing his children if you do leave.
Take it from someone who lives with a narcissistic parent: divorce
would be better. Children learn from modeled behavior. If they see
you walking on eggshells and behaving oddly in an unreal
relationship with an N, then that's what they learn. Best to go on
without N and model healthier behaviors, limit contact with N and
blossom yourself. One good enough parent can do wonders for
children. Don;t give kids more info than age appropriate. Tell them
they are too young to understand, they need worry about grades,
chores and finding their passions. You will handle the rest and
have things under control. Let them know it is OK to love other
parent and give them info on where they are going to live and when
they are going to see other parent. Parent your children and
continue with a consitent routine that provides safety and gentle
consitent guidance and teaching. Good luck. You can do this. Don't
stay out of fear. That's what your children will learn from you.