August 2007- We moved into the new home and the spending spree began. Seth had a credit score of 800 and lots of credit cards. He wanted to go on a spending spree through California. He was on a wild high- euphoric and happier than I’ve ever seen him. Seeing him happy was a huge relief. He claimed that business was booming, life was good and I bought every word that left his mouth.
We bought everything that we needed to furnish the house in one weekend. A massive dining room table, chandeliers, a $10,000 bedroom set, couches, art, patio furniture and everything else that we could find. He was unstoppable and he was on cloud 9. I wasn’t worried at all. If he was this confident in the business and in our life then I wanted to believe in him. I wanted to support him and obviously, money was no longer a concern in our world.
I hired an artist to create a masterpiece fit for a princess on my daughter’s bedroom wall- a Candyland mural. At two years old, her wall was bigger than most living room walls. I stayed busy decorating their bedrooms and playrooms. I through myself into being a full-time mom, having play dates with tea and crumpets (only half joking) and doing things that rich, stay-at-home moms do.
December 2007- During this time, I started a business from home and was on top of the world. My business was like another child to me– I put my heart and soul into it. The business was a hit in the local media and my business partner and I were on the front page of every newspaper and were interviewed on every local radio station. I felt like I was living a fairytale life. I had the home, the cars, the beautiful little girls and a new business that helped me to forget the unhappy feeling that I had whenever I thought of my marriage.
My brother came to visit us for a week and we took a family walk together through the community. My brother and I walked up ahead and he said to me, “You aren’t happy. I hate seeing you like this– you need to make a change…you are a shell of who you used to be.” I agreed with him yet I just didn’t know what to do.
I could keep the fake, “happy wife” image up to the community but I couldn’t pull it off with the people who truly loved me and knew me.
One Mom’s Battle: Our mission at One Mom’s Battle is to increase awareness of Cluster B personality disorders (Narcissistic Personality Disorder, Antisocial Personality Disorder and Borderline Personality Disorder) and their impact upon shared parenting and the Family Court System which includes Judges, CPS workers, Guardian ad Litems (GAL), Parenting Coordinators (PC), Custody Evaluators, therapists and attorneys. Education on Cluster B disorders will allow these professionals to truly act in the best interest of the children.
History of One Mom’s Battle: In 2009, One Mom’s Battle began with one mother, (Tina Swithin), navigating the choppy waters of a high-conflict divorce in the Family Court System. Since then, it has turned into a grassroots movement reaching the far corners of the Earth. Tina’s battle spanned from 2009 – 2014 during which time she acted as her own attorney. Ultimately, Tina was successful in protecting her daughters and her family has enjoyed complete peace since October 2014 when a Family Court commissioner called her ex-husband a “sociopath” and revoked his parenting time in a final custody order.
Tina Swithin: Divorcing a narcissist? Tina Swithin’s books are available online at Amazon (print, Kindle or audio format). Each year, Tina offers life-changing weekends of camaraderie and healing at the Lemonade Power Retreat. Tina also offers one-on-one coaching services and a private, secure forum called, The Lemonade Club, for those enduring high-conflict custody battles.