What is the effect of gaslighting
The term gaslighting comes from the movie with the same name. Gaslighting is a method through which you can program norms and values, ideas and thoughts totally anew.
In 2011 a research has been done to this phenomenon and it does not appear to have any scientific basis. When you do not know what gaslighting is, then it can be best shown by a few examples.
Examples of gaslighting
- 'I never said that to you'
When someone is applying gaslighting, sometimes they can act as if you did not say something that you actually did say. In this way you start to doubt your own actions and that is exactly the goal of gaslighting.
- 'Why do you never trust me?'
It is hard to start doubting somebody that continuously denies. Narcissists often apply gaslighting and will try to reprogram you to trust them, but it is absolutely not grounded.
- 'You make everything into a problem'
When someone cheats you time and time again you of course make a problem out if it. With gaslighting your comments are totally ignored and someone can even get angry about them.
- 'You don't know what you are saying'
Your authority is being placed in doubt with gaslighting, whilst this is often ungrounded. When you are being snubbed at you create a new reality and you sometimes adjust your norms and values to this.
- 'I have never been there before'
Narcissists can be very good in gaslighting. Possibly you have seen someone there and you confront them with that fact. When you trust someone you are starting to more and more doubt your own perception and change your reality into that which is being tried upon you.
- 'You have done way worse things to me'
You will also hear this one a lot from someone who is busy gaslighting. He or she is trying to waive away their own actions and through this you will eventually believe that something is less bad than it actually is.
Do you now understand what gaslighting is about? Then you can probably come up with a lot more examples about the way in which gaslighting is practiced. Gaslighting is often done consciously, but also unconsciously by narcissists and is a way from to satisfy their own selfish needs.
Victims of gaslighting
Do you think you are dealing with gaslighting? Then this is most often the case. Under this heading you will find out if it is really the case and the whole process is explained.
Gaslighting generally happens in different phases. In the first phase you do not have any clue what is going on and you do not believe what is actually happening. You find it strange when your partner, colleague or boss is denying certain situations and you are acting surprised. You do not expect that something like that will happen again and you are saying to yourself that it is all good. When next more funny stuff is happening you keep saying to yourself that there is no problem and you are starting to become blind to the series of uneasy events. In the beginning they can be simple things such as coming late, meetings are completely forgotten or words are put in your mouth that have never been said.
The next phase in gaslighting expresses itself mainly through defence. You get someone to go as far that he is defending himself for things he never did. So can it be that your colleague confronts you with different mistakes and asks you how come you are panicking and are getting stressed out. At the end of the day you are defending yourself for your panicky and stressed behaviour, while the mistakes of your colleague are the real problem. It becomes really dangerous when you then start to doubt your own perception. In some cases you do not know anymore if you are wrong or right. When time and time again these kind of dilemmas arise, there is a big chance that you are dealing with gaslighting and you are the one that is right.
Characteristics of gaslighting
There are a big number of characteristics of gaslighting. When you experience one or more signals then you can say you are dealing with gaslighting. Think about breaking or changing your relationship when you are dealing with the problems of gaslighting on a daily bases. It can be about relations in different areas. The following signals are important:
- You keep asking your self if you are right or not
- You ask yourself often if you are not too sensitive
- You are often confused and even when you are working you can not concentrate well
- You always say sorry to everyone
- There are many things to be happy with but still you are not content in life
- You lie to prevent someone bringing you down
- You are finding it difficult to make simple decisions
- You feel aimless and unhappy
- You have the feeling that you are doing nothing right and you are lacking self confidence
When are suffering from gaslighting it is important to do something about it. If the situation stays the same, nothing will change in the long run. Perhaps you can contact a psychologist when you are walking around with a knot in your stomach and you do not see a way out. Possibly psychological help will offer you the relief that you need and you will then see the possibilities which will make you happier in the end.