The Narcissist and gaslighting.
The term gaslighting comes from a 1938 play called Gaslight. In 1944 this was released as a film. Gaslight is a film about a woman whose husband slowly manipulated her into believing she was becoming insane.
Signs you’ve been gaslighted.
1. No longer feeling like the person you used to be.
2. Being more anxious and less confident than you used to be.
3. Often wondering if you’re too sensitive
4. Feeling like everything you do is wrong.
5. Always thinking it’s your fault when things go wrong.
6. Apologising often.
7. Having a sense that something’s wrong, but being unable to identify what it is.
8. Often questioning whether your response to your partner is appropriate (e.g., wondering if you were too unreasonable or not loving enough)
9. Making excuses for your partner’s behaviour.
10. Avoiding giving information to friends or family members to avoid confrontation about your partner.
11. Feeling isolated from friends and family.
12. Finding it increasingly hard to make decisions.
13. Feeling hopeless and taking little or no pleasure in activities you used to enjoy.
What is gaslighting?
Gaslighting is a form of psychological manipulation to put seeds of doubt into people’s minds, in the aim to make those around them question reality, doubt their memories, question their own sanity.
It’s a hideous form of mental manipulation, it has extremely traumatic effects, on your psychological and physical health, unfortunately by the way a narcissistic person draws you in, with the idolisation stage. Slowly and carefully, takes you down, with lots of different manipulation methods, it’s extremely hard to spot it while it’s happening to you, people are extremely susceptible to it. The narcissists gaslighting destroys your emotional well being, mental health and physical health, as the narcissist then slowly takes control of your mind and your life.
Gaslighting is about untruths or extending facts into something they were not. Making up stories of events that didn’t happen, punishing people, telling people something did happen, that never actually did—hiding things, taking power away from others by confusing them, destroying people’s character, to the person themselves and those around them. Outright lies said so sincerely you question yourself.
You know something happened, yet the narcissist with great conviction, Denys it ever happened, they will say. “I never said that.” Or “That didn’t happen.” Or “You dreamt that.” They will guilt trip you into believing their reality, and they will argue and blame you for anything and everything that’s wrong if you feel like your losing your mind over events. You are being gaslighted, and it’s all done, so you lose your sense of reality and your own beliefs and values.
Those are all done, so you end up so full of shame and self-doubt, you daren’t speak up to the narcissist or those close to you for a reality check.
Gaslighting causes cognitive Dissonance within our minds. This is when a person has inconsistent thoughts, this is when you end up with, two or more, realities, beliefs, of values.
Life’s hard enough living one existence, yet when you’ve always got someone you believe to love you, then acts like they don’t, this causes two believes within our minds. When they have rewritten history on you, this causes you to question the reality of what happened, living two realities within your mind, no longer being able to distinguish between the two. Then with all their gaslighting and your mind trying to processes everything while in a state of confusion with the cognitive Dissonance, plus the affects mental abuse has on our brain, shrinking our hippocampus, which holds our memories, and enlargement of our amygdala which houses our emotions, we live with a memory not able to maintain what it used to, and out of control emotions that we can not seem to get our control over, gaslighting puts our minds through massive trauma and stress, this can then lead us to emotional outbursts, apologising for those outbursts, not wanting to be around others as you feel negative within yourself and your reactive behaviour, questioning if you are too sensitive as your emotions are all over, once your mind is in this state, you genuinely believe you are at fault, and it becomes easier for the narcissist to gaslight you, and harder for you to see what’s happening and leave, with their added threats, intimidation and gaslighting of ” No one will love you.” And “You’re crazy.” We end up genuine feeling like we are to blame, that no one will love us, that we are lucky to have them.
No, You’re far from crazy, no one deserves to be abused, you’re not at fault, the whole toxic relationship forms when they start to gaslight your mind. No matter what happened afterwards, what you did or did not do, the gaslighting is the source of your pain and discomfort.
Recovery from gaslighting.
A lot in recovery is letting go of that shame, also your own ego and pride, Then asking others for a reality check, as you could be worried what others might think. I had a lot of inner shame, and ego to release to recover back to my happy self because the narcissist makes you believe you’re the cause of the problems and you think people will turn away from you.
You can not get the truth, and correct answers from a narcissist, their version of reality will always be different from those around them. They can never be accountable and will never accept responsibility, only false apology’s if they believe they have something to gain, they enjoy you calling them out, as this gives them more power and control over you, to gaslight you more and hit your emotions. They love to provoke reactions from you. They will twist and turn more and more on to you, with their word salad, to send you into further depths of despair.
If you questioned your part, doubted yourself, though you were to blame. You are not a narcissist, your reactions are normal human behaviour, due to being so manipulated, by the narcissist.
You need to work on releasing any guilt you have, releasing those traumas, and developing a new positive mindset, and a new inner self, full of self-worth. When you work on your inner self, listen to your instincts, even if you’re not sure what they are telling you, you will become so much happier, and more confident in your own abilities and trust within yourself. Only you can create your boundaries and values, and then others can respect them as yours, or no longer be a part of your life. People around you don’t have to understand them or agree to them, just respect them as your own and not walk all over them. You need your personal values and boundaries, and your actions need to match your words, Those around your actions need to match their words, people with lots of false promises, that continue to let you down, you don’t need those kinds of people in your life. There is plenty of good people in the world to surround yourself with. Those who abandon you in time of need, put you down, never accept any blame, no matter how nice they can be, are abusive, you need to get out and stay out.
If you are out, you need to remember. You can not help them. You can not fix them, so the next time they come for the hoover, with pity plays and false apologies, you don’t go back.
If you’re still with the narcissist, you’ve got to stop turning to them for help, as they will only make you feel worse, you need to start turning to yourself.
Allow yourself to make mistakes, and it’s hard when you’ve lived through gaslighting abuse, always questioning yourself, making mistakes is how we learn. To fail is our first attempt in learning.
Making your own choices, it is hard to re-learn to think for ourselves, when the narcissist gaslighting has you questioning everything you do, learning to make your own choice again, and not worrying if you make a mistake in your decision.
Letting your emotions out safely, if you need to cry, then cry it out, if you are frustrated, punch that pillow, whatever allows you to let your emotions out safely.
Be kind towards yourself, the fact you’ve been gaslighted is a fact, and you are far from alone, a narcissist is highly skilled at manipulation, be thankful you are now aware and can take steps to recover.
It is hard breaking free, it is also so worth it, for your mental and physical health and much more stable and happier life.
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