Gaslighting in relationships
Gaslighted. Are you?
Gaslighting emotional abuse and manipulation. Is this happening to you?
Gaslighting emotional abuse
If you’ve ever been gaslighted you’ll know the feeling. You think you’re going crazy, right?
Your gut is screaming at you. You know what you’ve seen and heard.
The narcissist in your life – a partner, colleague, even a friend – is denying it. It didn’t happen. You’re imagining it. Made it up. You’re too sensitive. You’re exaggerating. That’s gaslighting.
They’re lying to you. Bald-faced lies that you can even prove are false. Yet they tell you it’s you who is telling untruths.
They’re having an affair, but accuse you of being the unfaithful one. That’s gaslighting too.
You can’t understand it. It’s so obvious to you, but it’s like rationalizing with someone incapable of seeing sense.
You express your concerns with them about any of the above. The conversation gets twisted. The problem lies with you. Your sensitivity, your insecurity, your paranoia.
You walk on eggshells around them as you’re always to blame. It’s your perception that’s wrong, not the perpetrator’s abusive behavior.
It didn’t happen first. When they were seducing you with their charismatic, charming side.
Then, out of the blue, they reveal a little of the darker side hidden within.
A quick flash of anger, perhaps. Then it’s gone. You’re shocked. You think:
Did that really just happen?
It’s easy to doubt yourself, especially when they’re all charming again. They’re convincing you whatever it was they did wasn’t as bad as you thought.
You start to think you must have caused it and you change your behavior instead. You keep adapting your behavior, in the hope the emotional abuse will stop.
Despite the fact your gut instincts were telling you the truth all along, you begin to mistrust them.
Maybe I am wrong?
You feel the need to prove you’re worthy of them and that you’re not who they say you are. They begin to have control over you.
Gaslighting, what is it?
Gaslighting is an insidious form of psychological manipulation. It’s designed to confuse you and question your sense of reality.
It plants seeds of doubt in you that make you question your memory, perception of events. Even your sanity.
But like a frog in boiling water, you’ll not notice they’re brainwashing you, until it’s too late. This form of coercive control happens little by little, over time.
Gaslighting can happen to anyone. It’s used by cult leaders and dictators, along with narcissists. It’s an effective tool.
The word originated from a 1930s play Gas Light. In it a husband denies he is turning on the gas lamps in their attic. This leads the others in the house to dim and flicker. He tries to convince his wife who notices it she is imagining it and going crazy.
Over time a gaslighter’s manipulation becomes more complex. It wears down a victim’s sense of identity and self-esteem. Their aim is to gain control over you and it works.
Knowledge is power.
Signs of Gaslighting
Emotional gaslighting. Gaslighting abuse
Here are 10 signs you’re experiencing gaslighting: