Gaslighting is not just an urban legend. There are many women—and even some men—who are being systematically lied to, confused, and emotionally manipulated until they are completely helpless.
Gaslighting isn’t just about having a partner who is difficult to live with or be around. It’s a form of abuse that every woman should be aware of. Gaslighting is a clinically described process where one partner (usually a man) tries to make the other partner feel crazy in order to take advantage of that person. Here are the biggest warning signs that you are being gaslighted by a man who wants you to think that you are losing your mind.
- This Is Normal
No matter how many times he tells you what he wants is normal, if you feel like it is wrong it probably is. Maybe he steals things while you both go to the store. “It’s normal! Everybody does it!” he says. It can be any number of things, but if he insists that you are overreacting to an ordinary situation and that’s the opposite of what you know it true, then he’s gaslighting you.
- Wrong Again
What happens when you start to doubt everything that you experience? Usually, if you think that you can’t trust your own feelings and perceptions you become easier to take advantage of. That’s why a partner who is gaslighting you wants you to doubt everything about yourself. If you’re happy about something, he’ll give you a reason to be upset about it. If you think you look pretty and he’ll convince you that you don’t. After a little while of this, you won’t be able to tell what to think.
- Gaps In The Record
It’s so strange. You could swear that he said one thing, but he is denying it, saying that you can’t get any of the details straight. What’s going on here? Is there something seriously wrong with your memory? It’s not Alzheimer’s disease, it’s gaslighting. He wants you to mistrust your memory. Also, on his part, gaslighters will frequently claim to forget things that you have asked them to do, even whole conversations that you have had.
- You Must Be Crazy
It’s not just him who is saying that you are crazy, you’re starting to feel that way too. If you bring up serious concerns you have about him, the gaslighting response is to dismiss the way that you feel by blaming you for imaging those things. and he just blames you for imagining those things, saying you are “crazy”
- He Says He Doesn’t Understand What You Want
“First you tell me that I don’t pay attention to how you feel, then you tell me I’m wrong for suggesting what is wrong with you! I just don’t know what you want from me!” Sound familiar? This tactic is one of the gaslighter’s most ingenious—and ingenuous. He wants you to think that you are the one being emotionally confusing, not him.