Gaslighting is a form of mental abuse where a person(abuser) causes another (Victim) to question their reality and sanity by putting up a false narrative.

A gaslighter is intentional about gaslighting his victim to gain control over them. Gaslighting is subtle manipulation. They will say and do things and later deny they ever happened.

 They will undermine you, manipulate and convince you that you are the problem. The Point of gas lighting is to instill self-doubt. They do so as not to take responsibility or be held accountable for their actions or inactions.

Gaslighting is one trait of a Narcissistic personality disorder.
Narcissists/gas lighters are not born. Studies have shown that people develop these traits from childhood abuse or unhealed trauma.

Gaslighting traits exist in toxic romantic relationships, toxic work environments between colleagues or managements/ superiors and their subordinates. It is a complex behavior to identify and manage within a workplace. 

The word ‘Gas lighting’ originates from Patrick Hamilton’s original 1939 stage play called ”Gaslight”, Where a husband psychologically manipulates his wife by deception and trickery to steal from her and make her question her reality, memory, or perceptions.

In this article, listed below is what gaslighting sounds like in various kinds of toxic relationships. 

Gaslighting May Sound Like The Following 

Here, are some common Phrases and how a gaslighter uses them to manipulate a situation by shifting the blame thereby, not taking responsibility for their actions.

  1. What did I do to you?: When people use this phrase, they may genuinely not know what they have done. But when it’s gaslighting, the gaslighter is aware they have hurt you. They use this question to deny the impact they had on you and forcing you to question it.
  2. Victim Blaming: The phrase used most times in victim-blaming is ”the problem is you”. The gaslighter makes statements that make you question your role in a situation where you were the victim and had no control. It’s a way of shutting down a conversation or dialogue.
  3. I don’t remember saying this: This is a go-to phrase by a gaslighter, causing you to shift the focus from them by making you question your thoughts.
  4.  I am sorry you feel that way: When a gaslighter hurts you and says something like this; then, it is not an apology. Instead, it is a way to make you feel like you are the problem. They say they are sorry you feel the way you do rather than apologizing for what they have done.
  5. You need help: This is a shut-down response to avoid working things through. This term is used to imply that you’re the problem and you need to address your issues rather than them working through theirs.
  6. Your too emotional: This implies that your characteristics are flawed. Hence, causing you to question who you are.
  7.  You don’t know what you’re talking about
  8. You must be going crazy, that’s not what happened
  9. Why are you upset? I was only kidding
  10. ”You need to learn to communicate better’
    See also some gas lighting phrases used in a work-place and Managing gas lighting at work

What to Do

  1. Know and recognize when you are been gaslighted
  2. Stand firm in your truth
  3. Write down or record conversations
  4. Know when to walk away
  5. Do not apologize for something you did not do
  6. Seek professional help.

    As a disclaimer, Kindly note, If you have used one or more of these terms or heard someone say one or more of these words to you, that does not necessarily make you or them a Gaslighter. A gaslighter is intentional. A gaslighter knows what they are saying and doing.

    See more on Gaslighting the Narcissists favorite tool