Wondering whether this relationship is actually healthy or not… or are there some major red flags that are causing you to wonder Am I being gaslighted?? Well look no further cause we have the answers right here for you!!
(Or hey guy!!
You can change this situation to fit your experience of what you are reading.
These are just things I have experienced in a heterosexual relationship and am writing from the girl’s perspective.
But I know this can go both ways.
This isn’t an isolated gender thing and happens in all genders and relationships!!
But welcome friend I am so glad you are here reading along!!)
Let’s chat today about gas lighting especially if you are asking yourself am I being gaslighted??
Have you ever heard this term before?? I didn’t know the term of it but I experienced it a lot in my marriage.
I think it may be time for me to start diving deep into signs to look for in those unhealthy relationships.
Because, frankly I hope you can learn from my mistakes and experiences so you don’t have to go through it and can AVOID that shiz before you get trapped in an unhealthy relationship.
And girl if you’re in one and need to talk. Well, then reach out to me and we will figure this out together.
Email me even if you want to create an alias. I won’t judge. I promise.
So let’s chat about gaslighting:
Let’s start off with Siri’s knowledge of it; she shared:
Gaslighting is a form or severe psychological abuse where information is distorted, twisted, or selectively omitted by the perpetrator to favour himself and cause the victim to doubt his or her memory, perceptions, and mental health
But if you want to break it down into real terms…
You may be being gaslighted if:
-you no longer know what reality actually is.
-you’re questioning everything.
-you no longer trust yourself and your own thoughts
-it’s that feeling like you don’t even know which way is up or down and it makes you feel like you’re going absolutely crazy.
Did you know, that gaslighting when it’s done well you won’t even know its happening until it is TOO late?!
It’s a really scary thing because I feel like in gaslighting relationships you lose yourself along the way and by the time you realize it. You’re so far stuck in the mud it is hard to come back from.
I escaped a relationship that was abusive in many many many ways.
And in my healing process of coming back from a super abusive and dangerous relationship… I knew I needed the experts!!
If you can recognize and ask the question am I being gaslighted?? you are already two steps in the right direction!!
These are SO important to follow and I wish I would have had this knowledge and support system 10 years ago when my world was turned upside down and I was stuck in a relationship that I thought I couldn’t get out of even though I was terrified for my life.
So, let’s talk about the nitty gritty of gaslighting and what it will actually look like in a relationship.
- You’ll feel like He is hiding something from you because he more than likely is
And it probably has to do with cheating, reckless spending habits, or some form of abuse to you or others
Get this!! He knows it is wrong so he hides it!!
He is going to try and make you doubt himself to keep the behaviour hidden.
And a lot of times he will say crap like, If you loved me you would trust me.
- He is going to Try to change you
It will start with small comments and the pressure will build.
Usually it will be comments about what you wear, how you do your hair or make up and it will build gradually.
He will try changing your entire belief system!!
He is doing this to mold relationship to suit his needs and fantasies.
Things he will say will be like, “Looks like you’re gaining some weight but I want you to be healthy so you should lose weight.”
“Or your face is pretty but you’re so fat you really should lose some weight. I just want you to look and feel your best”
Know that this is not a one-time situation but will happen over and over and OVER again!!
- Guaranteed, He is going to try and control you
He is trying to
-isolate you from friends and family
-makes you believe that your family and friends hate him
-will move you away from them
-will keep you busy, lavish you with gifts
This makes me exhausted just talking about it. Because honestly I have experienced all of these things when I was married.
And it was SO SO SO EXHAUSTING!!
Repeated gaslighting leads to abuse!!
Abuse leads to shame. Shame leads to isolating yourself. Which leads to an awful downward spiral for all areas of your life!!
So, look for patterns in your relationship. Is he:
-Telling you just half-truths or just enough info to satisfy the convo??
-Do you catch him changing info to accommodate his lie??
-He will tell just enough truth to doubt yourself but cloud the rest of it in lies and deceit.
-Does he constantly discount information being told to him- and if you stand up to him against what he is saying, you’ll hear something like you’re going to believe that info over me?!
-is there verbal abuse that lowers your self-esteem. And when you call him on his shiz he will mask it as a joke. And play it off!! *insert eye-roll here*
-does he constantly make comments about your weight or physical appearance??
-Has he started fights to remove you from friends and family??
-Is he taking control of everything in your life that he even manipulates the tv shows, movies, and social media you have access to??
If you think you’re being gaslighted on a consistent basis here are some of the signs that you will feel within yourself:
-you’ll feel super unhappy in your relationship
-you’ll be scared talking about it with other people
-there will be times when you feel more and more self-doubt that your feelings are valid and question if this is even actually happening to you
-It gets to the point that you are unable or afraid to make decisions
– You become overly apologetic about everything
-Your self-esteem will take a total hit and drop (it will feel like you don’t even trust yourself)
-There will be more times you start to notice that you feel depression and/or anxiety within yourself- Your brain starts to feel foggy and you start to experience forgetfulness in all areas of your life
– It gets to a point that you just don’t even know what to do anymore; which creates a co-dependency on that person gaslighting you.
Steps to stop gaslighting:
Step away from the conversation
It is so SO so important to step away from a person who is repeatedly treating you in a way that is lowering your self esteem and self confidence.
You need to get back into your own head and really focus on what you believe to be right and true.
The best way to do that is to create a safe space to quiet your mind and reflect. It is important to reflect and become empowered!!
Get a trusted confidant that has no agenda
I am a huge proponent of counselling and going to a psychologist!! These people know their stuff and will be willing to help you to make sense of the world around you.
They will help to validate your pains and fears and tell you that what you are going through is NOT okay!!
Cause girl it isn’t!!
Pay attention to how you feel with this person
Some people absolutely love love love to debate and fight and argue.
I am not one of those people and so it is mentally and emotionally exhausting for me to be in a relationship with someone who expects me to do that all the time.
I can’t even remember where I heard this saying but a healthy person should always leave you feeling better off than you are found.
Obviously, it also goes the other way.
You also need to leave people better off than you found them.
When you get in a relationship with anyone whether it is romantic, platonic, friends or with family members you can combat gaslighting by:
-hanging out with your family and friends. If someone tries to cut you off from them, insist that these people be in your life. If they don’t accept that, then show them the door.
-unplug from social media. Have you noticed that when you have a huge online presence that you constantly feel stressed and anxious??
-When you’ve been gaslighted everything is a fight. So in your healthy relationships just avoid all those hot button topics that cause debate and contention. Like politics being a big one!!
-Start keeping a journal and pictures; but make sure it is secret and in a safe place. I wish I would have done a better job of documenting my abuse. It would have saved me the heartache in the end that I have had to endure.
-If you’re in an abusive gaslighted relationship, say bye and leave or escape!! If you need help check out this lovely supportive website called the hotline
When you’ve finally made it out.
Step away from dating so you can be clear to rediscover yourself and who you really are. I had to figure out what my favourite food actually was, what I liked to do and dress. And I am still rediscovering myself each day.
-Allow the healing process to be the solo process. You don’t need a man to come fix you!!
-Cut off contact with him completely. Delete!! Delete!! Delete!! Did I make myself clear?? Oh and BLOCK!!
– And last but not least, don’t be afraid to grieve for the time and effort you spent pouring into that relationship.
Being gaslighted sucks. And it hurts. And it leaves you feeling completely confused, vulnerable and a bit lost.
It’s okay to feel out of sorts for a while and to figure out your new normal you deserve that time to heal and find peace.
So if this post provided the answers to your question Am I being gaslighted??
It’s okay!! Girl just know you got this!!
You will make it out alive and better than who you were before you went through the experience!!
We are in this together!! I promise!!