7 Signs You Are Being Gaslighted

Hey Optimist Minds!

Are you familiar with the term, “gaslighting”?

It is a specific type of emotional manipulation that is a regular feature in abusive relationships. When someone gaslights you, they make you question your version of things. This can be an attempt to control how you feel or a way of deflecting accountability.

The word comes from the 1944 movie, Gaslight, where the protagonist’s husband kept making her question her reality. He would hide her belongings and then accuse her of misplacing them. Ultimately he had her and others believing that she was going crazy.

Prolonged exposure to gaslighting has detrimental effects on mental health. Its abusive nature leads to a drastic fall in self-esteem and self-worth. If you’re being gaslighted, this video can help you recognise the signs.

However, the information shared here is only educational. It cannot help you overcome the effects of gaslighting. For further recovery, we recommend that you consult a licensed mental health professional.

Now, here are seven signs you are being gaslighted.

One

You constantly doubt yourself.

Do you keep backtracking your steps, wondering what you did wrong? Is it pretty easy to convince you that you’re the one at fault?

When someone gaslights you, they keep instilling the idea that you’re incapable of knowing the truth. They tell you that your memories, thoughts, and values are wrong. Often, they manipulate events to reinforce these self-doubting beliefs. As a result, you struggle to trust your judgement again.

Two

You feel invalidated.

Since this person is constantly making you feel like you’re wrong about things, you feel unseen and unheard. You might even spend hours trying to explain why you’re so sure of what you’re saying. But a seasoned gaslighter will dismiss your justifications left, right and centre. You’ll probably end up craving to be understood.

Three

You question your memories.

With prolonged gaslighting, you might start to feel like you need a recording device for your conversations with the abuser. Time and again, they manage to convince you that you didn’t remember things right. Consequently, you start keeping memoirs or digital recordings of exchanges to prove that you’re not wrong.

Four

You’re always apologising.

Ever get the feeling that it’s always you taking the initiative to resolve a conflict? Do you feel like the other person is making you feel guilty when you shouldn’t be? A typical sign of past gaslighting is the tendency to always take the blame even when you didn’t do anything wrong.

Five

You feel anxious all the time.

As gaslighting has such a severe impact on your thoughts and beliefs, you often feel inadequate or incompetent. Dealing with the unpredictability of life can never be easy with such low self-esteem. Subsequently, you undergo worry and anxiety more frequently than others.

Six

You wonder if you’re over-sensitive.

It’s common for gaslighting individuals to make comments like, “you’re just overreacting” or “it’s not that big of a deal”. These are ways to minimise the impact of their behaviour and to avoid taking responsibility. Too much exposure to it can make you overthink every reaction you have.

Seven

You question your sanity.

In extreme cases, especially with gaslighting in abusive relationships, the victim may come to a breaking point where they surrender. In such a situation, you feel like it’s pointless to try to make sense of what’s happening to you. You lose all confidence in yourself. With all the emotional exhaustion, it’s easier to just start accepting that you’re the problem.

Did any of the signs we described resonate with you? Do you think that someone might be gaslighting you? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section. We’d love to hear from you.

A link for further reading and the studies & references used in the making of this video are mentioned in the description below.

Thanks for visiting optimist minds, take care. Until next time.

References

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