Have you heard of the phrase ‘gas lighting’? It is a type of psychological manipulation that makes someone question their own feelings and thoughts, and it is sadly fairly common in the dating world. However many people don’t realize that they are being gaslit, especially if the person they are dating is an expert manipulator.
Here are four phrases commonly used by gaslighters.
1. Common Phrases Used By Gaslighters: “You’re being way too sensitive.”
You tried to tell the other person that something they said or did hurt you, but their only response is “you’re way too sensitive.” This minimizes your feelings, implying that you are making a big deal for no reason. This can make you feel irrational or stupid, but it is important to trust your own perception. They did hurt you, even if they don’t want to acknowledge that.
2. “That didn’t happen.”
Gaslighters often deny that past events ever happened, especially if the event made them look bad. They will try to rewrite history in their favor, which can make the victim question their own reality. This can make them more dependent on the gaslighter, especially if they start to doubt their own mental state.
3. “You’re acting crazy.”
A gaslighter will lie and distort the truth over time, making the victim unsure of their sanity. The gaslighter will then use this to their advantage, telling the victim that they are acting crazy. They may also try to convince their family and friends that they are unstable, as this will discredit the victim’s version of events (and it could also encourage the victim’s friends to distance themselves).
4. “I’m sorry you feel that way.”
Finally gaslighters often struggle to apologize. Sure, they may say sorry for hurting you – but they won’t actually apologize for the actions that hurt you, as they don’t want to take accountability. Instead they would rather imply that you are overly emotional. This can be confusing for the victim as they are technically getting an apology, but the issue isn’t actually resolved.
This can indicate narcissism if they are completely unable to empathize with your side, but remember that isn’t your problem to fix. If they want to work on themselves, they can go to therapy or work on themselves – and then they can reconnect with you when they have changed.