If you’ve ever found yourself feeling dazed after talking to someone, like you’ve lost your mind, it’s possible they’re gaslighting you. This could happen after a conversation with your boyfriend, friend, or even a family member.
It’s a type of emotional abuse where the bully uses all sorts of tactics to make you question yourself. They play dirty just to gain an advantage.
People prone to gaslighting others are usually suffering from a narcissistic personality disorder. It’s one of the narcissistic traits that affect people around them.
It’s not a nice feeling to be on the receiving end, that’s for sure. If you’ve ever left the conversation dumbstruck, you probably dealt with a narcissist.
People who are just quickly passing through your life may not pose a danger, but what about those you’re surrounded by every day?
If you’re exposed to constant gaslighting, it’s enough to make you go crazy. This may sound unbelievable at first, but once you realize what you’re subject to, it will sound all too familiar.
Gaslighters play mind tricks on you to the point where you feel you’ve lost the ability to memorize things. The person who’s playing these games on you likes to twist your perception of reality.
It’s actually a manipulation technique where they give themselves a head start. That way, they’ll be in charge of your mind, your thoughts, and everything else.
How does gaslighting make you lose your mind?
When a person’s using you to their advantage, it eventually takes a toll on your mental health. After all, it’s a type of emotional abuse, no matter how inconspicuous it is in the beginning.
It may take some time to discover some of the clues your abuser’s been leaving. Your gaslighter will slowly creep their way into your mind making you fly off the handle.
Why is it so hard to recognize abuse? Perhaps it has to do with the positive reinforcement your abuser gives you.
Did they ever gaslight you and show remorse afterward? Is it someone you rely heavily upon? There are many possibilities that play a role in emotional abuse.
1. You question yourself
Gaslighting makes you question yourself and your actions. However, their manipulative person will ensure you that it’s no big deal and, moreover, it’s the right way.
You’ll most likely end up not giving it much thought because of how convincing they are. They assure you that everything’s fine and is like it’s supposed to be.
Not only do you start to doubt your feelings, but you also start being skeptical about reality. Perhaps you think everything is just déjà vu, but it’s not.
Your manipulator is persuading you that you’re making up scenarios that never happened. You’re constantly wrong and quite frankly, you may feel like you have no clue what’s going on.
Your abuser is so persuasive that you rule out any possibility that they could be gaslighting you. That leaves you with yourself – and that’s where the self-doubt starts to kick in.
2. You’re alone and insecure
Are you feeling lonely lately? The person who’s been gaslighting you is starting to distance you from others. How is that even possible?
They might’ve given you some sort of nicknames, such as “crazy.” You may feel as if others are perceiving you the way your abuser is viewing you.
They’re so good at twisting reality that you slowly begin to lose it. You genuinely start thinking that your abuser is right.
Eventually, you’ll share their opinion and start believing them blindly. Before you know it, you’re trapped in their world where they hold you as a prisoner.
Consequently, you’re alone and isolated, which leaves you even more insecure and constantly doubting yourself. You don’t deem yourself trustworthy anymore, so you start to rely on your abuser even more.
3. You fall victim to their abuse
When you’re constantly being brainwashed into thinking you’re making things up, eventually you come to believe it. And it’s hard to notice it while you’re involved in the relationship.
A gaslighter oftentimes has special tactics to delude you. If it’s a narcissist, you’ll fall for their manipulative ways in no time.
It’s the feeling of remorse and positive reinforcement that probably kept you in the relationship for this long. They manifest their guilt after they’ve abused you. It’s easy to believe them because you’re brainwashed into believing that all they really want is the best for you.
Also, if it’s never their fault, who else is there to blame? This brings you to the conclusion that it’s all your fault and maybe you’re just too sensitive.
4. You’re depressed
All of this emotional abuse takes its toll. Most of the time, you feel isolated from the rest of the world.
Your abuser convinces you that you’re going crazy, imagining or forgetting things. Before you know it, you’re petrified to deal with the outside world.
And you’re scared of your abuser telling other people that you’ve become unhinged. Actually, you’re worried about judgment.
This leads to feelings of anxiety and depression. All of the lies that your abuser’s been telling you seem to echo nonstop in your mind.
Suddenly, you’re living in a foreign world filled with stress and insecurities. Ironically, the only safe place seems to be the person who’s gaslighting you.
5. It’s all your fault
One of the ways gaslighting can make you lose your mind is by accepting the blame. You’re repeatedly being told how everything that happens is your fault.
You’re never given the chance to explain yourself because your abuser is never wrong. If you ever confront them, they stand ready with all sorts of excuses.
Moreover, they’re somehow able to turn it around and make you feel like it’s your fault you’re feeling this way! That you’re to blame for them treating you this way! If you’d done things differently, then maybe the outcome would’ve been different.
Yeah, right! Don’t fall for this blame-shifting, as it’s just another tactic of theirs.
All of the guilt-tripping slowly but surely messes with your mind.