What is gaslighting? Pratical Examples and how to handle them

December 8, 2022 - Reading time: 5 minutes
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We’ve all heard the term “gaslighting” before, but what does it actually mean? In short, gaslighting is a form of emotional abuse in which the abuser intentionally tries to make their victim question their reality. It’s a manipulation tactic that can be used in many different ways, such as telling the victim they’re crazy or making them doubt their own memory. Gaslighting can be incredibly harmful and is often used as a way to control and dominate the victim.

Gaslighting is a form of emotional abuse in which the abuser repeatedly lies or challenges reality, causing the victim to question themselves. This tactic is used to keep the victim off-balance and to undermine their confidence. In some cases, an individual's diagnosis of ADHD may be used against them by the gaslighter. As a therapist with 20 years of experience, I have seen an increasing number of clients with ADHD who report being gaslighted in their relationships and at work.

To protect yourself from gaslighting, it is important to educate yourself about this type of abuse. People with ADHD may be particularly susceptible to gaslighting due to issues with self-esteem, past relationship problems, and feelings of guilt and shame. However, it is important to remember that there is hope, and that it is possible to rebuild your life after experiencing gaslighting, whether it has lasted for months or years.

What is gaslighting?

Gaslighting is a form of emotional abuse in which the abuser deliberately tries to make their victim question their own sanity or memory. It is a very insidious form of manipulation that can be hard to spot, but there are some key signs to look out for.

Some common gaslighting techniques include:

  • Denial: The abuser denies any wrongdoing, or claims that their victim is "imagining" things.
  • Minimization: The abuser downplays the importance of their victim's experiences or feelings.
  • Blaming: The abuser blames their victim for anything that goes wrong, or tries to make them believe they are "crazy."
  • Gaslighting can also involve more subtle methods of manipulation, such as making someone doubt their own memories or perception of events.

If you think you might be a victim of gaslighting, it's important to reach out for help. Talk to a trusted friend or family member, or seek professional counseling. Remember, you are not alone and you are not crazy!

Examples of gaslighting

There are many examples of gaslighting in everyday life. Here are a few:

1. "You're just being paranoid."
2. "I didn't say that, you're just imagining things."
3. "You're overreacting."
4. "It's not that big of a deal."
5. "You're making a mountain out of a molehill."
6. "Calm down, you're getting too worked up over this."
7. "Don't be so sensitive."

How to handle gaslighting

If you have ADHD and are experiencing gaslighting in a relationship, it's important to take steps to protect yourself. Here are some tips to help:

  • Stay level-headed. It can be easy to become emotional when you're being gaslighted, but try to remain calm and rational.

  • Trust yourself. Gaslighters often try to make you doubt your own memories and perceptions. Don't let them convince you that you're wrong.

  • Reach out to someone for support. Talking to a trusted friend or family member about what you're going through can help validate your experiences and feelings.

  • Consider therapy. If you're finding it difficult to cope with the gaslighting, consider seeking professional help from a therapist.

It's also important to recognize the signs of gaslighting and get out of the situation if you suspect it's happening to you. Signs to look out for include feeling like you're going crazy, constantly second-guessing yourself, and feeling like you can't do anything right. If you have any concerns, talk to a trusted friend or family member for support and clarity.

adminADHDtest's team comprises experts in counseling, data mining, AI, and ADHD, uniquely blending cutting-edge technology with deep psychological insights to explore and address the complexities of ADHD.