I am writing to get some advice from those of you who may have been in a similar experience. It seems that my close friends of whom I confide in don't seem to understand how those with narcissistic tendencies impact someone. I will share my story and hope to gain some insight and perspective from you...
I have been involved with someone for almost 3 years before I was completely discarded. Our relationship was typical of that when a narcissist is involved. It was a roller coaster ride for a duration of the time together. However, the last year and half were solid and I really believed we have grown stronger together. I believed that he really loved him and that I was his best friend as he always mentioned. This was up until the discard about ten months ago when we got into an argument and basically told me how he fell head over heals in love with someone else and how at the end of our relationship he "wasn't feeling it because we are too different".
This is a complex situation because we work together and are both teachers in the same school. We have been broken up for ten months and I was immediately replaced with "the love of his life". Throughout the past ten months he basically rubbed it in my face how he met his perfect match and that him and I were not healthy. This was hurtful because every unhealthy aspect of our relationship was because of his behavior. He even went so far as to thank me for helping him grow immensely into being a better person for his new love.
Naturally, I responded with anger and he kept avoiding me. We were then civil at the end of the school year (2 months ago) when we had to be at work. But nothing more in our personal lives.
I found out last week that they are now engaged. After ten months together he is now getting married and I have to watch people congratulate him as the new school year begins.
I guess I am having a hard time accepting that he is happier with someone else than he ever was with me. Sometimes I wonder if he really isnt a pathological narcissist, and maybe I label him that as a defense mechanism to make myself feel better about the situation. It is true that he does have a lot more in common with the new woman than he did with me. Could it be that we really just weren't right for each other and that he is better for her? I am aware of the idealization phase in the narcissist triangle, but he never seemed that happy with me. This is why I question whether or not is truly a narcissist or really just loves this woman more than he did me. I know that I shouldnt worry about their relationship but its so difficult to completely cut someone out of my life that I loved, just the way he did to me. Plus I will be forced to see him and its hard to escape.
Its very difficult because now I will see him at work and don't know if I should be cordial or completely ignore him. He is completely happy and does not care about how he hurt me or my feelings at all while he is living on cloud 9. Its almost like he stopped "loving" me over night. I want him to know that what he did was not acceptable and wish there was a way for him to feel hurt (but dont think he ever will). I just need some advice on how I should act when I see him in person.
So basically the questions im conflicted with are:
1-How do I know if he really is a narcissist or its a defense mechanism to make myself feel better when labeling him?
2-Is it possible for him to really change for the right person he believes he has found?
3-How can I avoid feeling hurt when I have to hear about their engagement and marriage plans at work?
4-Should I completely ignore him (he might know I still harbor feelings if I do and it might boast his ego) or should I be cordial and work when I see him?(This may also boast his ego and make him feel like he is on top of the world since he can do no wrong)
THANK YOU again for taking the time to read my post and your support.