Updated: Feb 5
Gas lighting is a term for the tactics people use so that they can exert their power to the person in different ways which then makes the person doubt and questions themselves too. It is a tactic used to put the victim down and can be used by abusers, those who are narcissists and dictators.
At times it can be done in ways that aren’t obvious to the victim but as time goes on can turn into brainwashing and overbearing use of power. The victim may even feel as though they are worth nothing and are losing their minds in the process.
Gas lighting is also known to be a form of abuse, to work on convincing someone that they are wrong about things, even when they are right and can be quite manipulative and controlling. They will disagree with what the person says and always take the upper hand in what the result will be, even when they are wrong.
Over a period of time this affects the person’s sanity and self esteem, it can crush how they see themselves and for some they settle and accept it as a way of life, but for others they are able to escape it once they come into understanding of what it is.
Gas lighting can be very unsafe and severe because it undermines the person’s sense of reasoning and belief, there are continuous patterns the gas lighter uses in terms of putting the person down, disregarding what they say and attacking them any chance they get. When something is done over again the person it is done to, becomes weaker and feels as though they can never be right and their points are never valid.
WHAT TO LOOK OUT FOR-
- Making the person feel bad and inadequate, e.g. I always a b and c and you don’t do anything. Meanwhile that is not true.
- Accusing the person of forgetting things and doubting them – I don’t think you are right or that didn’t happen don’t lie....
- Making the person seem as though they are not in the right frame of mind – You are mad.
On the flip side there are instances where gas lighting does occur but yet the person isn’t aware that they are doing it. One can say that this can show the person to be insecure and not as confident to address matters in a more suitable manner, some people don’t like being wrong, or sounding as though they don’t know what they are talking about so react on that.
One thing that is important to address is the point that these traits can stem from the gas lighters childhood experiences that shaped their mind and lives in negative ways so their view in life is tainted by the affect of those experiences, if not dealt with can cause an internal struggle and difficulty to admit wrongs and flaws.
KEY POINTS TO CONSIDER-
- If you are aware of gas lighting, it is important to do something about it because if left alone will continue to be a negative habit that can cause damage to your emotional and mental wellbeing.
- Sometimes it helps to step back and assess the situation and seek guidance for the best ways to go about dealing with it. This also allows you to ask questions to find suitable solutions.
- Finding a good way to communicate with the person to make them understand how it is making you feel. But for some this pattern of gas lighting has been embedded into their actions so much so that you talking to them may not always get the point across clearly to them. But the fact that they hear what you are saying will plant a seed that will need to be watered with more talks and direction for any change to happen.
A FEW TECHNIQUES THE GAS LIGHTER USES TO BE MINDFUL OF –
- The use of lying each time you both communicate
- Their denial for things that you have said to them or done
- The use of what is close to you as a weapon
- Wearing you down with manipulative tactics
- Actions they do never matching what they say to you
- They know confusion can weaken a person and so do it often
- They try to put people against you
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