Gaslighting.

I’m pretty sure more people in 2017 know what gaslighting means than they did in 2016 or earlier.   It’s left the domain of the narcissistic abuse community and become a household word now that we have a leader who does it on a daily basis, largely via Twitter.   I see this term everywhere now.  In one sense, it’s a good thing, since people are becoming educated about what it (and malignant narcissism) looks like in a leader.    But it’s very bad that the whole world is being gaslighted now.   It’s even worse that so many people fall for the lies and act as flying monkeys who call those of us who value the truth ‘snowflakes.’

gaslighting_def

 

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About luckyotter

Recovering from BPD and C-PTSD due to narcissistic abuse from childhood. Married to a sociopath for 20 years. Proud INFJ, Enneagram type 4w5. Animal lover, music lover, cat mom, unapologetic geek, fan of the absurd, progressive Catholic, mom to 2, mental illness stigma activist, anti-Trumper. #RESISTANCE
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23 Responses to Gaslighting.

  1. nowve666 says:

    Not only is “gaslighting” a household word in the narcissistic abuse community. “Flying monkeys” is as well. I have a t-shirt that reads, “I have flying monkeys and I know how to use them.” People think it’s about the Wizard of Oz. LOL!

    You’re right about politicians gaslighting the public. But it’s not really a recent phenomenon. They have been doing it forever. One of my (least) favorites is the fairy tale that Social Security is going to go broke, always uttered in fatalistic tones like this is as immutable a fact as the fact that the sun rises in the east (although it really doesn’t rise in the east — the earth revolves on it’s axis and rotates around the sun). People who are attached to this myth are apparently deaf to the simple fact that the future of Social Security is up to us. The government can pursue policies that WILL make it go broke or it can pursue policies that ensure it will last forever. I understand why politicians behave as they do. But what is the matter with voters who can’t get the simple truth.

    Liked by 4 people

    • luckyotter says:

      In fact, I just added a sentence about flying monkeys — they tell us we are “snowflakes” who listen to fake news. Everybody in his cabinet is a flying monkey. I agree with you that probably all politicians have gaslighted and used flying monkeys (or at least most of them – politicians are a pretty narcissistic bunch in general), but it’s never been this bad. Not even close.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Actually, I believe there is a legitimate application for the term “snowflake” – though it is commonly misapplied.

    I think it is correctly applied to many in the current younger generation, and those who think they are automatically “in the right” – or automatically have certain “special” rights – without application of any critical thinking skills. Anyone who automatically believes everything the media “on the left” propogates for example, just because “it is not on the right”, would indeed, merit the term “snowflake”.

    Self aware, critical thinkers on the otherhand, think outside the box of all imposed false dichotomies, and seek truth wherever truth lies. They are also not relativists, and don’t believe that two directly contradicting objective realities can both be true at the same time, whereas “snowflakes” believe in subjectivism. (“I Am right because I Am.”)

    As far as gaslighting is concerned, I think it’s the essence of the diabolical, and I am so happy that you re-emphasize its dangers, Otter.

    Those who actually knowingly worship satan may be extremely rare, but they are well educated in psychiatry, and all gaslighters follow what seems to be their concious (culpable) “method”. Gaslighting applies the very guilt of a perpetrator on the intended victim – long before the victim even realizes they are being targeted for brainwashing and use.

    I cannot find any example of when gaslighting occurs where this is not true. Gaslighting seems to always be, not only the cover up, but the PREMEDITATION of a crime against an innocent victim.

    For example, a pederast cleric will select a child victim and start to gaslight the child and the child’s family – well in advance.

    Father Friendly will become “worried” about “Johnnie’s” “stability” and seek to become a special “friend” to Johnnie (in the privacy of the confessional) while spreading the word to a select few, that he worries Johnnie’s “parents” may be sexually abusing him, framing in advance, the family members for “framing a priest.” As for the child victim, the victim becomes very aware and rightly fears for what will happen to him and his family should he squeal.

    This happens all the time, and contributes to the high suicide rates of persons abused by prelates, even later in life.

    The effects of one’s life, family members, livelihood being threatened, the imposed life long burden of “guilt” and feelings of toxic shame – have been very successfully “imposed” by an evil predator upon an unsuspecting child victim well in advance. And the resulting suicide of the victim – sometimes years later – is read by a widely uneducated public – that the victim suffering from severe complex post traumatic stress disorder and related situational depression – really “was” delusional, or mentally “ill” – after all.

    I think those of us who have unraveled our childhood with a narcissistic parent can realize similar patterns of premeditation of imposed guilt upon us, before we even reached the “age of reason” or were capable of realizing we were being “set up”.

    Same thing with narcissistic romantic involvements. We were targeted to take their fall.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. u2hearts says:

    I always thought my ex was more of a sociopath than a narcissist but the gaslighting really seemed to define him. I never heard of the term. I try to forget that dark time in my life as best I can

    Like

  4. Aura Gael says:

    Our new (sort of) landlord gaslights. She tries to find a way to pin whatever goes wrong in our apt on us and is great at denying the experience of another person.

    I know that’s not politics but I thought of it as I read.

    Liked by 2 people

    • luckyotter says:

      Gaslighting is everywhere. It’s certainly not limited to the political sphere — most of us who write about narcissism lived with it all our lives and are just beginning to learn that we weren’t as crazy as everyone told us we were. I have to say, having been surrounded all my life by narcissists and other gaslighters, it kind of innoculated me to what this administration is doing. I can see through all of it.

      Liked by 2 people

      • It’s so funny reading your words “it kind of inoculated me to what this administration is doing” because that’s exactly how I feel, and I am admittedly frustrated by those who are blind to it.

        I feel like saying “D-U-H.” But I forget I was once too brainwashed.

        When someone does both good things and bad things and displays contempt for the vulnerable, this is living evidence that they cannot be trusted, but want to be hailed as a “savior” of sorts by the mindless elect. Talk about gaslighting, did you hear how Trump appointed someone considered “good” for mental health care reform? I mean that was genous – coming from a highly functional, sociopathic narc who doesn’t want a mental hygiene petition filed against him…. I wanted to ask you what you thought of that, Otter.

        It is so “something Mother would do” – right before she signed into law – genocide for all those with major delusional disorders … 😉

        Liked by 1 person

        • luckyotter says:

          What they are actually trying to do is thin the herd — and he’s appointing people for various cabinet positions who actually want to destroy the departments they’re assigned to —
          a billionaire woman who is against public education as education secretary, another billionaire who wants to destroy the EPA and environmental regulations as head of the EPA, an Ayn Rand supporter and hater of the poor in charge of Health Care (Paul Ryan), and the list goes on and on. It’s deliberate and evil.

          Like

          • “What they are actually trying to do is thin the herd — and he’s appointing people for various cabinet positions who actually want to destroy the departments they’re assigned to…”

            I agree in general, and Trump’s own words clearly indicate contempt for the poor, sick and most vulnerable from society. But Trump’s actions are not always directed to that end. And that was my point. He is double minded or “double acting” like a true sociopath, possibly to be hailed as a savior by “both sides” of issues.

            I’ll give you two examples.

            The first got hardly any major media attention – which speaks to its own corruption. Trump eliminated approximately 3,000 individuals from government offices for child molestation. This is baffling. First of all, how did he know where all these predators were?

            But then you start to connect his mentor Roy Cohn and figure Trump’s subsequent connections to the mob and to brute homosexual pederasty. Then Trump’s actions seem to be the premeditated removal of all those he knew were involved in child abuse, so they couldn’t finger point Trump’s knowledge of – and perhaps participation – in child abuse.

            Genous, you have to admit. And he comes off like the hero.

            I always thought Trump’s over the top sexual bravado and misogyny against women indicated a hidden brute homosexual little boy addiction.

            But his actions did initiate the arrest and remove from government of a lot of sex offenders. Wow, isn’t that one hard to swallow – no pun intended.

            The second example is Trump’s pick of Doctor McCance Katz for Assistant Secretary of Mental Health. She has worked a long time to reform the system, repair SAMHSA, and get help for those most in need, in a broken system that effectively abandons them onto the streets. Caretakers and family members of the seriously mental ill have hope for the first time in a long time that they will now get care and financing for their loved ones.

            So, for all the different “causes” one can imagine individuals willing to “sell out” everyone else, if it appears to them that Trump is their hero.

            We have lost the ability in this country to see the larger picture – that if a president dehumanizes any one person, race of people, gender – if a president dehumanizes humanity and expresses contempt for those who suffer – the Might Makes Right philosophy – they are not intent or fit for serving any humanity at all. There is no such thing as a little bit of evil for a greater good, or a good that can really be accomplished by oppressing others.

            Liked by 1 person

            • luckyotter says:

              Good points, and I agree with you about all of this. He has to be seen as “strong” which to him means the dismissal of anything “feminine” – caring, empathy, etc. But it’s really weakness and fear of being seen as the pathetic little boy with a fragile ego he really is.

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      • Aura Gael says:

        After commenting I was thinking more about how it seems that so many people resort to it. I was quite gas lit myself in the FOO environment.

        Once you wake up to it the veil falls off everywhere.

        Liked by 1 person

        • luckyotter says:

          It does. Once you become aware of it, you notice it everywhere, and can’t believe you’d been so fooled before.

          Liked by 1 person

          • It is really difficult for me ( I am an autodidact, have no psychiatric degree, yet am qualified by professionals to counsel mental health care practitioners) not to notice how a lot of “techniques” – such as gas lighting – are used to a lesser degree by people everywhere, even among persons I used to think of as my friends. I think most people are “monkey see monkey do” even if they are not conciously aware of it.

            For example, a neighbor might be upset if the elderly person next door to him needs assistance. The younger neighbor just got home from work and wants to watch the ballgame. So instead of being honest, “I’m really exhausted” or “I’m sorry, but I’m busy” – they say patronizingly to the elderly person: “No, there’s no point in me searching your house for your glasses – You must have left them at the store. They’re gone now. People are always shoplifting at the Pick n Save.”

            This is a subtle form of gaslighting. I like the expression because it aptly fits in this instance as blowing “gas” in someone’s direction, just because the gaslighter doesn’t really want to bother with them. It is horribly disrespectful.

            I find it extremely irritating when someone does it to me, and they don’t even seem aware they are doing it, let alone socially aware enough to realize I know they’re doing it. Alot of people will, when their own actions inconvenience them, shift blame subtly onto another person whenever irritated.

            A car pulls out right in front of another car, then lays on the horn, irritated, when the car behind has to drive up his a**. This is punishing or “gaslighting” the victimized car behind, which the gaslighter almost colided into, as if the real problem was it was “following” too close.

            Just the other day I saw a distracted man in the grocery store give an irritated “wtf?” look to an innocent person, into which the distracted man almost, through his own fault, colided.

            So this means that many persons have a “default” or “automatic” possibly largely unconcious blame reaction – whenever they are the ones that are doing something wrong.

            May God save us all from single vision.

            Liked by 1 person

            • luckyotter says:

              I know what you mean. I see gaslighting happening all the time, even by people who are not narcissists.
              I think there is just so much anger and despair, and people are so impatient these days, or disgusted, or whatever, that they will say anything to avoid having to take responsibility in a world that seems to put too much pressure on everyone. Not that it makes it right or anything, because it doesn’t.

              Liked by 1 person

  5. Interesting post. Narcissism I know, it’s a familiar term from psychology studies back in my university days. But gaslighting? I’d never heard the term before I read it in your post title.

    Liked by 1 person

    • luckyotter says:

      It’s actually been part of the “lingo” used on narc-abuse sites — it originated from the 1942 psychological thriller movie “Gaslight”, where a psychopathic man who had married a woman (Ingrid Bergman) to steal the jewels she had in the attic kept going up there and rooting around at night while she was in bed. When she said she heard someone in the attic, he told her she was nuts and it was probably just mice. Over time he took pleasure in making her doubt her own reality. He’d play around with the gaslights in the house (this took place in the days before electric lights) and told her she was imagining things and the lights were just fine.
      After a while of making her doubt what she was seeing and hearing, she really did start to go crazy.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. David sabens says:

    Just went thru the Mexican variation

    Of GASLIGHTING to put icing on the cake I’ve been fed on both sides of the border

    Bipolar and ptsd sufferers ara ideal victims for GASLIGHTING and it’s a most effective way to make prior crimes grow cold

    You can hire retired secret service agent of two and while the victim
    Is being destroyed by Mexican treatment destroy his US banking , credit, reputation, and hijack
    his data , email accounts , and 2 LinkedIn accounts and get a lot of enjoyment out of
    It all.

    In my case my insurance was canceled and I’m fighting advanced diabetes and heart failure and colon
    Cancer and am unable to even
    Come close to paying for treatment

    Sad that this is being.done to
    Anyone for any reason

    But in my case it’s one man

    Being bipolar is bad enough

    But to purposely
    Inflict ptsd and GASLIGHTING
    Double barrel plus destroying
    My income and blocking my communication channels and insurance ..,I’m a dead man and the stress and neglect and all the rest has cut my life expectancy in half or more ..

    So I want the world to know GASLIGHTING can be as deadly or deadlier than just about any crime on the books and should have penalties Match the crime

    Liked by 1 person

    • luckyotter says:

      I don’t know what to say. I’m so sorry that is happening to you and you are fighting serious illness without support.
      I’ll keep you in my prayers. I know that’s not much.

      Like

  7. dgkaye says:

    Pretty darned good description of the man who took down years of building up a country in just 100 days.

    Liked by 1 person

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