10 Warning Signs of Gaslighting video

18.07.2020

In the field of psychological violence, the subtle can become much more damaging than the obvious. Close people can do or say things that, although they may seem harmless to the naked eye, hide a burden of "poison" capable of creating a profound personal invalidation in those who suffer it. They are wolves in sheep's clothing.

The term gaslighting comes from the title of a classic 1944 Hollywood movie, "Gaslight," in which Ingrid Bergman is harassed by her husband, who tries to make him believe she is crazy. He manipulates his environment to make him believe that he is losing faculties, while he stands as his main protector and defender, when what he really wants is to subdue her. Have you ever met someone like that?

What is emotional abuse?

Gaslighting is a form of emotional abuse in which you try to confuse the victim by handling information, so that you come to doubt your own perception of things, actions or thoughts, and even consider your own sanity. The abuser (or "gaslighter"), tries to put the victim at his mercy, diminishing his confidence and sense of reality .

How do you know if you are a victim of emotional abuse?

The peculiarity of this type of abuse is that there is no physical violence . In fact, the stalker is usually particularly careful and forthcoming to gain the victim's trust.

  • You question what you think or what you do all the time.
  • You feel confused and disoriented . Impotence for not remembering details.
  • She is nervous and uncomfortable when she meets the stalker and she doesn't know specifically why.
  • She criticizes herself for exaggerating the situation, for being too sensitive.
  • He constantly apologizes .
  • He is unable to make decisions . He doesn't trust his own judgment, so he chooses to believe the accuser's.
  • Excuses the accuser if someone close to you criticizes or questions you.
  • Feeling of incapacity He tries to live up to the expectations of the other, but he never succeeds. She feels underrated.
  • Fear of expressing your own emotions, so you tend to keep quiet.
  • He feels guilty for not being happy as before and for causing worries for the bully.
  • You think you are losing your mind irreversibly.

How does the abuser act?

This type of aggressor is shown as a close and charming person with the victim whom he usually praises and makes him believe that the only person who understands and cares for him is the aggressor himself. The abuser often resorts to lying and denies things he has said or done, even though there is evidence to maintain his role. Sometimes it can tend to attack the things the victim appreciates and minimize their feelings.
Manipulation does not happen overnight. There are certain phases to weaken the victim:

  • Mistrust : in this initial phase the victim still believes in his own perception and beliefs, and although he would like to have the approval of the abuser, it does not create an imbalance between the parties.
  • Defense : the victim begins to feel that he must protect himself and confronts the harasser trying to justify that he is wrong, resists and tries to refute it. In this phase, discussions are eternal without reaching conclusions. The need for approval increases.
  • Depression : the victim's self-esteem and autonomy in this phase is already greatly affected. She begins to doubt everything and is afraid of making a mistake for fear of criticism. He tries to justify that the abuser is right, thinking that in this way he will get his love and approval. She feels sunken and disconnected.

Tips to combat it

  • Pay attention to warning signs. It is important to catch the problem on time .
  • Trust your own judgment, your values ​​and your beliefs.
  • Put context : you can not lose your mind only when we are with a specific person and work well with the rest.
  • Keep your decisions : don't change your mind just because someone tells you to.
  • Respect your emotions : nobody can tell you how you have to feel. Do not judge yourself from the other's perspective, but from your own parameters.
  • Cultivate your assertiveness .
  • Surround yourself with people who make you feel good, not bad. Communicate.
  • Create your own spaces . Spend time on your evolution and personal growth.
  • Don't wait for the stalker's approval. Do not try to reach agreements or that your position is recognized when there is manipulation involved, it is a losing battle.
  • Question the need to keep the stalker in your life. Find alternatives .

What you should know...

  • The peculiarity of this type of abuse is that there is no physical violence . In fact, the stalker is usually particularly careful and forthcoming to gain the victim's trust.
  • The abuser (or "gaslighter") tries to put the victim at his mercy by nicking his confidence and sense of reality.
  • Manipulation does not happen overnight. There are certain phases to weaken the victim: mistrust, defense and depression.

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