Are You Being Gaslighted?
Check for these telltale signs:
You constantly second-guess yourself.
You wonder, "Am I being too sensitive?" a dozen times a day.
You wonder frequently if you are a "good enough" girlfriend/wife/employee/friend/daughter.
You have trouble making simple decisions.
You think twice before bringing up innocent topics of conversation.
You frequently make excuses for your partner's behavior to friends and family.
Before your partner comes home from work, you run through a checklist in your head to anticipate anything you might have done wrong that day.
You buy clothes for yourself, furnishings for your apartment, or other personal purchases thinking about what your partner would like instead of what would make you feel great.
You actually start to enjoy the constant criticism, because you think, "What doesn't kill me will make me stronger."
You start speaking to your husband through his secretary so you don't have to tell him things you're afraid might upset him.
You start lying to avoid the put-downs and reality twists.
You feel as though you can't do anything right.
You frequently wonder if you're good enough for your lover.
Your kids start trying to protect you from being humiliated by your partner.
You feel hopeless and joyless.
Your husband crosses the line in his flirtations with another woman at a dinner party. When you confront him, he asks you to stop being insecure and controlling. After a long argument, you apologize for giving him a hard time.
Your boss backed you on a project when you met privately in his office, and you went full steam ahead. But at a large gathering of staff - including yours - he suddenly changes his tune and publicly criticizes your poor judgment. When you tell him your concerns for how this will affect your authority, he tells you that the project was ill-conceived and you'll have to be more careful in the future. You begin to question your competence.
Your mother belittles your clothes, your job, your friends, and your boyfriend. But instead of fighting back as your friends encourage you to do, you tell them that your mother is often right and that a mature person should be able to take a little criticism.
If you think things like this can't happen to you, think again. Gaslighting is when someone wants you to do what you know you shouldn't and to believe the unbelievable. It can happen to you and it probably already has.
©2007 Dr. Robin Stern (P)2018 Random House Audio