Warning Signs Of Gaslighting In Your Marriage
Gaslighting is a common manipulative behavior and has the potential to cause serious physical and emotional harm. As a form of domestic violence, it happens when one partner denies obvious facts when dealing with the other, causing them to doubt their perception of the situation and their sanity. It can have serious adverse effects on your health and it is important to be aware of the warning signs.
What Is Gaslighting?
The term ‘gaslighting’ gained popularity after the release of an Alfred Hitchcock movie in 1944. In the movie Gaslight, a husband isolates his wife and slowly convinces her she is losing her sanity.
Today, gaslighting is one of the most common types of emotional abuse and can cause devastating long-term harm to victims. According to Healthline, common signs that someone is gaslighting you include:
- Insisting you said or did something that you did not do;
- Twisting facts to make you appear wrong or at fault;
- Refusing to acknowledge obvious facts;
- Expressing doubts to you and others about your perception of reality, your behavior, and your overall mental state;
- Accusing you of being overly sensitive, unreasonable, or ‘crazy’ when you call them on their behavior.
Just like other types of domestic violence, gaslighters engage in this behavior as a means of feeling powerful and gaining control over intended victims. In general, no amount of reasoning or arguing will cause them to change their minds, their attitudes, or their behavior. Your primary objective in this type of situation needs to be protecting yourself and your own mental health.
Signs Your Spouse Is Gaslighting You
Gaslighting can take a heavy toll on your physical and emotional health. Unfortunately, your spouse will likely deny they have a problem and use your accusations as further proof that you are unstable or otherwise seeing things wrong. To protect yourself, Marriage.com advises being alert to these warning signs:
- Catching your spouse in obvious lies, which they refuse to acknowledge;
- They deny saying or doing something when there is obvious proof;
- They habitually do the opposite of what they say they will do;
- They attack your ideas and downplay your accomplishments;
- They attempt to confuse you;
- They use people, events, or even your own statements against you as ammunition;
- They know just how to ‘push your buttons’, seeking out and exploiting your vulnerabilities;
- They cause you to question yourself, your talent, and your relationships with others.
All of the above chip away at your confidence, self-esteem, and sense of safety. This can impact you at work, in raising your children, and in other relationships. The first step is to realize that it is your spouse and not you who has the problem and to take steps to distance yourself.
Contact Our Fort Lauderdale Domestic Violence Attorney Today
The law office of Vanessa L. Prieto can guide you in protecting yourself against a gaslighting spouse. To discuss your options, reach out and contact our Fort Lauderdale domestic violence lawyers and request a confidential consultation today.