The term “gaslighting” has been thrown about a lot in 2022. Despite its misuse, this word is a fantastic way to describe feeling ignored, disregarded, or exploited by another person in any kind of relationship, whether it be romantic, professional, or friendly. Gaslight comes from the title of a 1944 American film about a husband who steals from his wife by making her believe she is mentally ill. The contemporary equivalents of gaslighting may be just as nasty, with one side using manipulation, blame-shifting, and dismissal to make the other question the veracity of their own emotions, issues, and suspicions. Here are several indications to look for if you suspect the latter could be you…
1.You’re constantly discredited
One way a gaslighter boosts their own credibility is by undermining yours. To your friends and relatives, they will speak about you as though they are concerned about you, spreading rumors under the guise of care. Inadvertently, it might be persuasive since it seems to be coming from a caring place. They may even try to persuade you that these are the opinions of others about you, and that they are only repeating what they have heard.
2. You find your feelings being minimized
The gaslighter’s attempt to convince you that your reactions are overblown or that you’re overreacting are key to the gaslighting experience. That way, you’d have to take responsibility for figuring out the truth, whether you’re worried about getting quiet-fired at work or suspecting your spouse is cheating on you. Constant dismissal of your concerns without attempting to alleviate your distress is a major red flag. Everything is alright, and you’re overanalyzing or misinterpreting the situation.
3. You’re being lied to
This is connected to trying to discredit you, and it is essentially changing facts or denying things that you know to be true. Your beliefs will be challenged by presenting the facts you know to be true in a new light. If you attempt to face an issue and you keep hearing statements like “You’re mixing things up” or “That’s not what happened,” it’s time to rethink your approach.
4. They make it your fault
You learn how to deflect responsibility on the first day of gaslighting training. The gaslighter’s difficulty is solved, and their control over you is strengthened, when they can convince you that everything is your fault. Do you believe that they’re trying to cheat? How could you, when all they’ve done is show you how much they care in the past? You you believe they’re complaining about you behind your back, though? That’s terrible; your so-called best friends are the ones who will support you even if they’re the ones who are being critical. You feel like you’ve let them down by questioning their devotion to you and your well-being, so you think carefully before raising that line of inquiry again.
5. You find yourself constantly apologizing
This relates to the previous section. You feel the need to apologize for yourself because you attribute all the failures in this equation to your own actions. whether you take a step back and analyze the situation, asking yourself whether you’re apologizing too much despite your unhappiness in the relationship, you could realize that you’re being gaslighted.
6. Everything feels like dodging landmines
When you’re spending time with a gaslighter, it’s difficult to feel like you can relax and be honest about your feelings and identity. If you feel like you have to tread carefully around your partner/friend/colleague/boss at all times, that’s a major red flag.
7. They call you crazy
By far the hardest hitting of the bunch, this one. A gaslighter is an expert manipulator, and their greatest weapon against you is your own mind and memories. Consider it a major warning sign if your spouse, employer, acquaintance, etc. (whom you suspect of gaslighting you) causes you to doubt your sanity. You will be made to feel ridiculous or humiliated for doubting something you feel passionately about, and your feelings will be blown out of proportion. If you sense this is occurring to you, it’s game over and you need to take action.