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15 Signs You Are A Victim Of Gaslighting

Signs Victim Of Gaslighting

3. You feel confused and disorientated.

4. You feel threatened and on-edge, but you don’t know why.

5. You feel the need to apologize all the time for what you do or who you are.

6. You never quite feel “good enough” and try to live up to the expectations and demands of others, even if they are unreasonable or harm you in some way.

7. You feel like there’s something fundamentally wrong with you, e.g. you’re neurotic or are “losing it.”

8. You feel like you’re constantly overreacting or are too sensitive.

9. You feel isolated, hopeless, misunderstood, and depressed.

10. You find it hard to trust your own judgment, and given a choice, you choose to believe the judgment of another.

11. You feel scared and as though “something is terribly wrong,” but you don’t know what or why.

12. You find it hard to make decisions.

13. You feel as though you’re a much weaker version of yourself, and you were much more strong and confident in the past.

14. You feel guilty for not feeling happy like you used to.

15. You’ve become afraid of “speaking up” or expressing your emotions, so you stay silent instead.

Want to know more about how you can understand if you are a victim of gaslighting? Read 8 Lies You Start Believing When An Abusive Partner Is Gaslighting You

Tactics Used By The Gaslighter

Gaslighters use a variety of subtle techniques to undermine your reality and portray you as disturbed and messed up one. These include, for example:

  1. Discrediting you by making other people think that you’re crazy, irrational, or unstable.
  2. Using a mask of confidence, assertiveness, and/or fake compassion to make you believe that you “have it all wrong.” Therefore, eventually, you begin to doubt yourself and believe their version of past events.
  3. Changing the subject. The gaslighter may divert the topic by asking another question, or making a statement usually directed at your thoughts, e.g. “You’re imagining things—that never happened!” “No, you’re wrong, you didn’t remember right.” “Is that another crazy idea you got from your (family member/friend)?”
  4. Minimizing. By trivializing how you feel and what you think, the gaslighter gains more and more power over you, e.g. “Why are you being so sensitive?” “You don’t need to get angry over a little thing like that!” “I was just joking around, why are you taking things so seriously?”
  5. Denial and avoidance. By refusing to acknowledge your feelings and thoughts, the gaslighter causes you to doubt yourself more and more. For example, “I don’t remember that, you must have dreamt it!” “You’re lying, I never said that.” “I don’t know what you’re talking about, you’re changing the subject.”
  6. Twisting and re-framing. When the gaslighter confidently and subtly twists and reframes what was said or done in their favor, they can cause you to second-guess yourself—especially when paired with fake compassion, making you feel as though you are “unstable,” “irrational,” and so forth. For example, “I didn’t say that I said _____” “I didn’t beat you up Johnny, I just gave you a smack around the head—that’s what all good fathers do.” “If you remember correctly, I was actually trying to help you.”

Looking to know more about how gaslighting works? Read 121 Things Narcissists Say When They’re Gaslighting You

Healing The Wounds Ignited By Gaslighting

Gaslighting causes us to doubt our own memories, perceptions, and judgments, throwing us emotionally and psychologically off balance.

If you feel as though your self-esteem, confidence, and independence has withered under the flame of gaslighting you are not alone … and there certainly is hope!

Almost all of us, including myself, have experienced one form of Gaslighting or another throughout life. The problems arise when Gaslighting is a frequent shadow that trails behind our relationships and partnerships. The good news is that knowledge and awareness is the first step to healing your life and rebuilding the strong, perceptive person you are … and you have already taken it!

While it is true that in some situations we genuinely might be overreacting, or might genuinely be exhibiting irrational behavior, it is also important for you to listen to your instinct or intuition. Do you have a heavy feeling in the pit of your stomach? Do you feel weighed down and oppressed? Do you feel depressed? These are signs that you have unconsciously picked up on deception and “foul play.”

While we can consciously be fooled, unconsciously we can’t, and often we will have a lingering feeling that “something just isn’t right.” Make sure that you listen to this feeling and seek help, either professionally or socially (i.e. a trusted group of friends or a support network).

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Aletheia Luna

Aletheia Luna is an influential spiritual writer whose work has changed the lives of thousands of people worldwide. After escaping the religious sect she was raised in, Luna experienced a profound existential crisis that led to her spiritual awakening. As a spiritual counselor and professional writer, Luna's mission is to help others become conscious of their entrapment and find joy, empowerment, and liberation in any circumstance. See more of her work at lonerwolf.comView Author posts