(GoHealthier.com) – We’ve all seen those relationships where someone is emotionally abusing their significant other and the blame is thrown around on both sides. Unfortunately, some people are wired to be the type where they gaslight others to make themselves look and feel better. Read on to discover if you’ve fallen victim to gaslighting.
Gaslighting is the ultimate power trip. It’s also a common manipulative tactic abusers use to gain control over you. People who engage in this behavior are masters at manipulation. Learn some of the main characteristics of gaslighting, including what to look for and how to avoid it in a relationship.
Being Gaslighted? Watch for These Important Signs.
1. Gaslighters Deny, Deny, Deny
A gaslighter will often deny things they’ve done. Maybe you asked them to pick up something at the store, but they didn’t do it. Rather than owning up to their forgetfulness, they say you never asked them. Or they were caught cozying up with someone at the bar. You saw them, but when confronted in front of others, they deny you ever saw them. It’s a form of manipulation that involves lying and trickery. The end goal? To make you think that you were only imagining it and that you’re “crazy.”
2. They Find Your Weaknesses
If someone is gaslighting another, they find that person’s biggest weakness and use it against them. For example, in an argument they may dig up a painful memory you shared with them in the past, such as an assault or an abusive family member. When you trigger them, they will use that traumatic memory as ammunition to win the fight or argument.
3. Gaslighters Try to Make You Look Stupid
A gaslighter often tries to make themselves look better to others. This is a classic description of narcissistic behavior. They will cut the other person down in front of their own friends, co-workers and family members. They think that by making you look stupid, they will look like the person who is in the right and not the wrong.
4. They Often Blame Others
People who gaslight others also blame everyone else for their problems. If they wake up with a headache, they blame it on the neighbor for letting their dog bark all night. Tardy for class? It was because there was an accident on the way into school. No matter what, they can never just take responsibility for what they do. They often try to drag others into it.
5. Gaslighters Discredit You to Others
It’s important to know that your significant other or loved one always has your back. No matter what others say about you, they will stand up and defend your name. But someone who gaslights will do the opposite. They will discredit you in front of others when you’re not there to defend yourself. The reason? To create doubt about you and your character so that other people won’t believe you if and when you tell them about the gaslighter’s behavior.
Gaslighting is a form of abuse in a relationship. No one deserves that type of treatment. The goal is to get them to realize they need professional assistance. With behavioral therapy, gaslighting might become a thing of the past. Alternatively, you might choose to leave a gaslighter. It just takes that first step forward to get the right help. Consider seeking a counselor to better understand your significant other’s behavior.
~Here’s to a Healthier Life!
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