We’ve talked about this before, but it’s a huge component of the trouble with getting over these assclowns after a break-up — and that’s how easily he seems to move on. How light his step is after you break up, how easy it is for him to pretend that now, now that you’re not in his life, he is happier than ever and feels energy and radiance in every day. This is all while you feel like you’ve been hit by a logging truck and can barely form coherent sentences, so thorough and intense is your grief and pain. And it feels to you exactly how he wants it to feel to you — like he’s indispensable, unique, fun, healthy, awesome, and Mr. Right, and you’re doomed to a pit of misery, despair and depression without him.
OK, please join Aunt Alex as we take a closer look at this. Two people are together. Let’s call them Jennifer, and Assclown Narcissistic Douchebag Yakface (OK, we can call him “Andy” for short). Jennifer is a vibrant, emotionally generous woman. Andy is a narcissist who has no empathy, no ability to bond, and no burden of thinking of anyone but himself. Jennifer and Andy are going out.
Jennifer bonds. Andy only pretends to. Jennifer becomes emotionally involved. Andy only pretends to. Jennifer loves. Andy, ugh — he’d rather suck on moose mucous flavored fun pops.
Andy, because he’s an A. N. D. Y., breaks it off when he starts to feel he and Jennifer are too close, or she points out he’s not perfect, or he just feels vaguely bored one day and figures it must be the woman’s fault. Jennifer, not understanding what the heck happened, is devastated. Andy is not, because he was never truly invested in the relationship. So he carries on like things are fine.
There’s also something else happening here, and that’s Andy’s desperate need to pretend. Andy isn’t fine after the break-up. Not because he loved Jennifer and she was important to him, but because he’s a disordered trainwreck on the inside, and he’s constantly unsure how things look, what’s happening, whether he’ll get enough attention and adoration that day, and whether anyone at any time will ever actually make him decide anything or expect him to know how to pretend to feel. He’s anxious that he might not get enough worship. That’s a lot for one pathetic idiot to take on each and every day. But he’s going to pretend he’s doing fabulously, because: a) he needs to find a Jennifer replacement FAST and to do that he needs to look good, and b) it would never occur to him NOT to pretend that everything is terrific. Pretending is his life. Pretending is who he is.
My point here is this: Jennifer’s response to the break-up is real. It’s deep, and affects her, and it’s complex and emotionally strong. Andy’s reaction is just another narcissistic song and dance. 100% fake, totally meaningless, and utterly devoid of value. It doesn’t mean anything because it’s not tied to actual feelings, empathy and events. It’s only reflective of his need to bust his narcissist moves. It’s only about his desperation and his shallowness. It’s only about him, right this second, and what he wants, where he is, and what he’s doing right this second. What he can get out of someone this second, and who might be nearby from whom he can get it.
He eventually gets in touch with Jennifer again, because he wants some attention and adoration and remembers she gave it before. Now that they’ve been apart for a while, she’s not “regular” anymore — and “regular” is a very, very noxious concept to the garden-variety narcissist. He also wants to see that she’s been having a hard time without him; this makes him feel special. So, he looks her up, and he pours on the charm to try to get another fix of love from her. And if she’s been listening to Aunt Alex, she’ll do us the sweet, sweet favor of taking him back in without a hitch. Please, Jennifer. Get him away from us. Take one for the team.
OW! Hey, watch it with the rolled-up newspaper! Man, social workers can have surprising upper body strength……..