The term “gaslighting” refers to a form of emotional abuse, in which the abuser twists, spins or selectively omits information, or presents false information to make the victim doubt their own perception, memory, and sanity. We hope you will never ever become a victim of gaslighting, but forewarned is forearmed. Here are five signs that your partner might be gaslighting you.
They make wrong things seem right. Does your partner ask you to do things you find immoral because “spouses are supposed to be a team and to support each other”, for example, to lie for them? If this happens often, you may be gaslighted. Yes, spouses are supposed to look out for each other, but you shouldn't be pressured into doing things that contradict your moral principles. What is wrong is wrong.
They make you doubt your perceptions. Most gaslighters are constantly telling their victims that what they are hearing, seeing, or feeling isn't what they are hearing, seeing, or feeling. You think that your jokes are funny, but your spouse tells you they are not. You think that you're thin, but your partner thinks you need to lose weight. You've always thought you were smart enough, but they make you feel dumb most of the time. Actually, the term “gaslighting” owes its origin to the play Gas Light, in which the husband made his wife doubt her perception by dimming the gas lights in the house and then insisting that the level of illumination hasn't changed.
They make you doubt your memory. You clearly remember that your partner said, did, or promised to do something, but they are trying to convince you that it have happened. “I never did that, you're wrong”, “You're confusing things”, “You're indulging in wishful thinking.” The scariest thing is that you're starting to believe that your spouse is right and your memory plays tricks on you.
They make you feel like you're going crazy. Some gaslighters outright tell their victims that they are paranoid, too sensitive, overreacting, and some gaslighters are more subtle. Be that as it may, being gaslighted makes you feel like your going crazy. You're constantly doubting yourself and your partner, you find yourself doing things you thought you never would, you're questioning your choices and your actions, you feel like you've always in the wrong.
They make you feel depressed. Depression is the final stage of being gaslighted. Gaslighting victims end up feeling confused, anxious, and hopeless. The relationship isn't fulfilling anymore, it just makes you feel empty and said. Ironically, you can't find the strength to blame your abusive partner. A lot of depressed gaslighting victims think that it's their fault, that they've done something wrong and failed to meet their partner's expectations.
- 5 Signs Your Partner Is Lying to You, 5 Tips for Dealing with a Passive-Aggressive Partner, 5 Causes of Stress in Marriage, The Most Common Reasons for Divorce