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What is Gaslighting?

Old 08-18-2010, 10:35 AM
  # 41 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by littlefish View Post
Wow! I learn something from SR everyday! I am a recovering alcoholic with major codependent issues and when I read this thread about gas-lighting,...so much about my relationship with one of my brothers came clear like a bolt of lighting.

All the times he said he "never said that". (when of course he did). Or didn't do that, when he did. All the times he tried to recreate history and try to convince me I didn't hear, didn't see, didn't experience something that I actually did hear, did see, did experience. I mean, I was there. Yet he tried over and over again to imply I was befuddled and didn't remember..got it wrong, I am a dingbat, etc, etc.
same here. I would say often say to the ex "So what you're saying is, you never yelled at me. You never said "this or that", and you're saying I was the one who yelled"
and he was clear and said "yes"
I would alway feel like I needed to tape record our talks because I started to question my sanity.

The mind of an addict is that twisted, I don't think it's with bad intent.
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Old 08-18-2010, 10:41 AM
  # 42 (permalink)  
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welcome Theuncertainty.....this really helped me too.

I found this over a year ago and it was such a relief to put a name to it.
I spoke about it in Al Anon and was told this is a common tactic amongst addicts, wet or dry. Their brains cannot compute they could be in the wrong, so at all costs, will seek and destroy.

It's sad actually. I cannot even imagine the pain a person feels to have to be like this
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Old 08-18-2010, 10:45 AM
  # 43 (permalink)  
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This has been such a helpful thread. This is exactly what I went through. And I almost did go insane. If it were not for al anon and SR, I would not have had the courage to say, "I know you are drinking, and sneaking, and lying about it, and this is not what I signed up for". And he told me to get out if I did not like it, so I did. I was so scared, and hurt and sad, I was physically sick to my stomach. But that moment saved my life. I am convinced of that.
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Old 08-18-2010, 10:56 AM
  # 44 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Summerpeach View Post
very true, I was always wondering why when I was around him, my anxiety was so high. The last day him and I were together, we took a walk and I was miserable and tried to explain to him why I feel anxiety around him.

It makes you feel like you're crazy. Their "crazy" becomes your "crazy"
It certainly does. My pulse rate increases rapidly whenever the ex calls me. My anxiety and tension increase monumentally and it usually takes a day or so for me to feel normal again. Mild PTSD most likely. That's why I have stuck to no contact for the most part for so long. If I need updates about my daughter I get them from her parents, so there's no real need to maintain contact.

Arguing with people like this, or even defending yourself is one colossal, huge waste of time.

I just agree and say, "Yeah, ok" and leave it at that now. They give up eventually.
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Old 08-18-2010, 10:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Summerpeach View Post
welcome Theuncertainty.....this really helped me too.

I found this over a year ago and it was such a relief to put a name to it.
I spoke about it in Al Anon and was told this is a common tactic amongst addicts, wet or dry. Their brains cannot compute they could be in the wrong, so at all costs, will seek and destroy.

It's sad actually. I cannot even imagine the pain a person feels to have to be like this
It's their own ego that causes it for a large part, I believe.

Imagine being in your 30's or 40's and having little to nothing to show for your existence on this planet, and that your only accomplishments have been to ostracize your friends and push your loving family out of your life, to the point that they want nothing to do with you anymore.
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Old 08-18-2010, 11:04 AM
  # 46 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by seekingcalm View Post
This has been such a helpful thread. This is exactly what I went through. And I almost did go insane. If it were not for al anon and SR, I would not have had the courage to say, "I know you are drinking, and sneaking, and lying about it, and this is not what I signed up for". And he told me to get out if I did not like it, so I did. I was so scared, and hurt and sad, I was physically sick to my stomach. But that moment saved my life. I am convinced of that.
It did save your life, seekingcalm. I too stood up to my ex, and said, listen, your drinking is a problem. To which her reply was, "Get out, get out you SOB." and that was pretty much it. Once I confronted the demon of her alcoholism, that was it for me. That was last year and I have only seen her in person once since then. All because she was incapable of overcoming her problem. Not once have I seen her in 2010, only spoken on the phone - she refuses to see me in person, which is pretty much fine by me.

EDIT:

Actually, it's funny, it's like she mirrors my decision to go no contact now, except for the times where she gets tipsy and decides to phone and accuse me of all sorts of crap.
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Old 08-18-2010, 11:17 AM
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Great book on the subject:

The Gaslight Effect: How to Spot and Survive the Hidden Manipulation Others Use to Control Your Life

Amazon.com: The Gaslight Effect: How to Spot and Survive the Hidden Manipulation…
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Old 08-18-2010, 11:19 AM
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It gives me a panic attack and makes me furious when I read this. My XABF did this to me for months, denying an affair with a married women, when I had read suspicious text messages from her myself. He would even call her in front of me and say "Sarah thinks we had sex, how stupid is that?!" To beat me down. He applied all the tactics. I think I'm getting over all of his BS but when I think of this $hit I get filled with rage again.
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Old 08-18-2010, 12:00 PM
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My ex would yell at me, then I would ask why he's yelling and he would say he wasn't and that I was yelling.
MY AH does this all the time. Projects. It's infuriating, when I have to deal with it.

I think it's because he's pickled. Not clear. But I know there are real sick ***** that do it intentionally.
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Old 08-18-2010, 12:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Duped View Post
It's their own ego that causes it for a large part, I believe.

Imagine being in your 30's or 40's and having little to nothing to show for your existence on this planet, and that your only accomplishments have been to ostracize your friends and push your loving family out of your life, to the point that they want nothing to do with you anymore.
It's all ego. Addiction is a disease of the ego. Though I can say, I don't think anyone actually wants this for their life.
I think they are confused about why they do what they do.
They self sabatoge to prove to themselves even more than they are not worthy.
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Old 08-18-2010, 12:11 PM
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so, they like to stir the pot?...so to speak...good god!!:crazy
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Old 08-18-2010, 12:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Duped View Post
It certainly does. My pulse rate increases rapidly whenever the ex calls me. My anxiety and tension increase monumentally and it usually takes a day or so for me to feel normal again. Mild PTSD most likely. That's why I have stuck to no contact for the most part for so long. If I need updates about my daughter I get them from her parents, so there's no real need to maintain contact.

Arguing with people like this, or even defending yourself is one colossal, huge waste of time.

I just agree and say, "Yeah, ok" and leave it at that now. They give up eventually.
The anxiety I felt was strange, we would spend every 2nd weekend together and maybe 1 night during the week and it seems like I would start to get sick the day I would see him. Then when we would go out, I would feel like this panic.
He once said "you always seem to get sick around me and feel well when I'm not around"
He was right, I could not admit that, but it was true.
As much as I loved him, cared about him and as much as I loved our weekends together, I was always in fear of something crazy happening.
Though we rarely fought when together, it was mostly on the phone when apart.
Odd!
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Old 08-18-2010, 12:16 PM
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Originally Posted by missb89 View Post
It gives me a panic attack and makes me furious when I read this. My XABF did this to me for months, denying an affair with a married women, when I had read suspicious text messages from her myself. He would even call her in front of me and say "Sarah thinks we had sex, how stupid is that?!" To beat me down. He applied all the tactics. I think I'm getting over all of his BS but when I think of this $hit I get filled with rage again.
People do crazy things when they are being unfaithful
My ex told me 3 nights before I caught him cheating that I needed to trust him and SWORE he was not cheating. Well he was!
It's all so unsettling
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Old 08-18-2010, 12:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Summerpeach View Post
welcome Theuncertainty.....this really helped me too.

I found this over a year ago and it was such a relief to put a name to it.
I spoke about it in Al Anon and was told this is a common tactic amongst addicts, wet or dry. Their brains cannot compute they could be in the wrong, so at all costs, will seek and destroy.

It's sad actually. I cannot even imagine the pain a person feels to have to be like this
i think some feel no pain about it at all. i think some are made that way.
narcissists. alcohol just fuels there self righteous indignation that you dont see it their way. my opinion.
sigh.....
and maybe i am trying to make it less personal this way.
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Old 08-18-2010, 01:33 PM
  # 55 (permalink)  
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My RAH started smoking again a few months ago. It was his decision to smoke to stop smoking - whatever - I had nothing to do with it.

I suspected he starting again, it's not difficult to spot it's kind of obvious. And when I ask "you started smoking again?" and said NOO!!

I could not f****in believe it - I didn't care about smoking for God sake but now he just LIED to me!!! Like he's hiding from his mother or his father used to beat the crap out of daily, maybe he's scared from that. But who cares I was so P*SSED.

The thing that still concerns me now after months. Is his such a knee jerk reaction to gaslight.

The BS just comes so quickly and naturally, he doesn't even have to think about it. It just flows out... It's truly a gift.

It is unbelievable what they will do and say to cover up a lie!!!

He's in recovery so eventually he caught himself and admitted he was lying.

(OH REALLY DUDE?! Were ya"? like I didn't know, like ya' had me fooled this whole time, what a good man to finally do the right thing by telling the truth!!!")

But I don't think he even BEGINS to understand what he does and how serious it.

He just thinks - well I lied, and came clean, I know I shouldn't lie cuz dats weally weally baaad. I a bad boy.

He has no clue about how sick it really is. I wished they talked about it in the meeting...

It feels good to know THIS has a name.

as you can tell it still p*isses me off
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Old 08-18-2010, 01:46 PM
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With all due respect to some men; some men give woman VERY little credit for the intuition and awareness they have.
My intuition is ON target most of the time.

My bro in law who is a man in every sense of the word, said to me "All men lie, they have to or no girl would ever go out with them"

;-)
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Old 08-18-2010, 02:17 PM
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My intuition has never failed me. I have failed me by ignoring that intuition time and time again.
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Old 08-18-2010, 02:30 PM
  # 58 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Summerpeach View Post
People do crazy things when they are being unfaithful
My ex told me 3 nights before I caught him cheating that I needed to trust him and SWORE he was not cheating. Well he was!
It's all so unsettling

Eggzackly what made me bring up gaslighting in the first place. That gut feeling is absolutely infallible. I will never doubt it again. The thrill of infidelity must be heightened to near ecstasy by beating the third degree from the woman he's betraying.
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Old 08-18-2010, 06:14 PM
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With all due respect to some men; some men give woman VERY little credit for the intuition and awareness they have.
My intuition is ON target most of the time.
Yes that's right - we always know when something is wrong or being hidden- it may take a little time to figure out exactly what it is - but we know!!

It's so important to listen to that inner voice - it always knows best.
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Old 08-18-2010, 06:17 PM
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My inner voice was talking, I just had my denail earmuffs on.
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