How to Avoid Being Gaslighted?

To be gaslighted is possibly one of the most damaging consequences of becoming entangled with a narcissist.

I’m not kidding – it’s beyond unpleasant. 

The only time you realize how unpleasant it is, is when you wake up to the extent of the gaslighting.

That day you wake up and no longer recognize the person starting back at you in the mirror: 

That’s when you understand gaslighting.

I’m a firm believer in nothing being impossible – including avoiding being gaslighted.

Here’s how!

Gaslighting: Remind Me Again?!

Gaslighting is the ultimate tool in the narcissist’s toolbox. Covertly considered by them to be their secret weapon, the narcissist uses gaslighting to manipulate you and make you doubt your reality. 

They can twist lies, deny what really happened, and outright lie to your face, all with no remorse. 

It works by the narcissist using phrases such as:

I never said that.

You’re wrong.

You’re not remembering it correctly.

Are you okay? You seem to be overreacting. Did you have a bad day or something?

You’re getting it all twisted.

You’re jumping to the wrong conclusion.

You’re basing your thoughts on zero evidence.

Narcissists will make you question every single aspect of your own reality, eventually leading to the questioning of your sanity. 

Am I going mad?

Not at all, you’re in the grip of a narcissist. 

How You Fall Into The Gaslight

It’s done so subtly over time. If narcissists came straight into your life calling you crazy from the start, you’d pull that face you pull when you aren’t impressed.

Then you’d tell them where to go.

Narcissists never start off this way. They present as a boxed, packaged charmer. And yes, you see it, you like it, you want it to stick around.

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You believe that version of them, because it’s so convincing.

Soon enough, you learn to trust them. So why would it be any different when they tell you you’re wrong, and deliver it so well.

Of course you’re wrong. You trust them, after all. 

Time is Their Trick

This is what I try to tell people when they feel the shame of falling for the gaslight. 

You fell for a very clever, very manipulative trick. You went into this innocently, knowing you were being authentic.

The narcissist wasn’t.

So, over time, yes, you will start to notice that your feelings have changed. You feel confused. You don’t know what’s real and what’s not anymore.

It’s because somebody came along and jumbled it all up for you. 

That had nothing to do with you, but now you know, you can do something about it. 

Avoiding Being Gaslighted With These 5 Ways

Nothing, I repeat, nothing is impossible. You can avoid being gaslighted, and these 5 different approaches will help you.

#1 Learn to Stand in Your Reality

Your reality has been denied for a long time, I get it. It’s now a foreign concept to think about yourself as still being able to hold your own opinions and thoughts without them being taken from you. 

What if you just remembered all the times your reality was stolen for what it was – narcissistic abuse? I know that might seem like an oversimplified way of viewing it, but actually, it isn’t. It can be black and white like this. 

You voice that you didn’t like the way the narcissist acted, and you learn to remain where you know to be true.

See also  11 Ways How Narcissists Suck You Back Into a Relationship With Them

Refuse to be convinced otherwise. 

#2 Apply Boundaries

No narcissist will like your boundaries, but that’s not your problem. If they try to overstep them, you remind them of your boundary and why it’s there. 

I don’t like it when you raise your voice at me. If you continue, I will refuse to continue in this conversation.

If that is encroached further, you follow through with what you said you were going to do.

Narcissists will go out of their way to disrespect you, but the stronger you are, the less they will be able to gaslight you. 

Boundaries are essential.

#3 Say No – and Mean it

No should always mean no, but if for instance, it hasn’t been with you, it can now start to be.

You’re overreacting. It wasn’t like that at all.

No. It was exactly like that.

You sound crazy. I’d never cheat. 

No. I’m not crazy. I have actual proof.

You love this show, so I know you’ll come with me.

No. I specifically told you last Friday that I had plans that evening, and you booked the tickets anyway. 

Narcissists will try and try and try to act like you don’t matter. 

No is a whole sentence. 

#4 Learn Narcissism

Narcissism is like a psychological Tardis. You look at it from the outside and think, “Oh yes, I think I am familiar with what this is.” 

Then you step inside – and – woah

This entire world opens up for you to learn and grasp it all. The knowledge you can acquire from narcissism is how you can learn ways to get out of those situations the narcissists put you in.

See also  11 reasons why narcissists lie about cheating On You, even when you caught them in the act

You don’t have to be that innocent, “give-them-a-chance-” person anymore. 

Not with what you’re learning. 

Narcissism is complex, but the good news is once you know what you know, you can’t unlearn it. When everything starts to make sense, you will come to realize that the “truth” was in fact, a fabricated lie to get you to be controlled. 

You can now sit in the control seat again and find your way back to yourself. 

#5 If All Else Fails: End The Relationship

I always hate to look like I am talking any of you into ending your relationship. Ultimately, you know when it’s time to call it a day, and sometimes it’s harder to implement than it is to talk about.

I fully understand that.

However

Narcissistic people are abusive. They act as though they are in it to do you a favor and to make you feel good about yourself. They will trap you before they harm you emotionally, mentally, and sometimes even physically. 

As it stands, narcissistic abuse affects 25% of people in relationships.

That is one in four.

That statistic never sits well with me, because I think about how many people I know are in relationships. 

Nobody has to be in those relationships. If you can see a better, happier, more at ease version of you outside of this dynamic, the chances are you ought to give that some thought.

Gaslighting is never going to be something the narcissistic side-steps, so maybe you should be the one side-stepping instead.

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