Category Archives: gaslighting

Gaslighting and the Double Bind Theory

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The Icy Stare of Your Abuser

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The “blank stare” of the narcissist is agreeable disconcerting and creepy.  It is like you are being looked at but they are not really looking at you as a real person.

These eyes are looking in the direction of your face and yet those sinister eyes are not focusing on you. The narcissist is looking to find themselves in that river of water like Narcissus in the original Greek mythology.

They are thinking only of themselves as you stand before them, attempting to convey something that they vaguely recognize as human emotion.

If you are angry, they will hit every possible painful button you have, in order to elicit more anger from you.

They are aware that the anger hurts you and they drink it like a drug.

If it is sadness that you are laying before them in some last ditch effort to drag some semblance of humanity out of them, then they will push every possible button you have, in order to draw out every last drop of sadness in you.

They will continue doing whatever will work until your shaking body cannot tolerate another tear dripping uselessly from your eyes.

Then as you are crying or yelling or pleading with them, they will stare at you as if nothing that you are feeling has anything remotely to do with them.

It occurs to me, after some recent study of Paul Ericson’s research on micro-expressions, that they might be holding their face completely still in order to control those expressions that might give them away.

The monster that lies beneath that blank, emotionless stare is far more sinister than just a robot that functions like Spock from Star Trek, with all logic and none of those pesky emotions.

No. It’s not a complete lack of all emotion that narcissists feel. That would be much more harmless, and not nearly as dark.

But it’s a frightening lack of Spock style logic that is actually happening beneath those blank and ice cold eyes. Those eyes that you would swear shone black for just a micro-second a minute ago, but then … that must have been your imagination running away with you….right ?

The real monster peaks out through that blank stare. It watches you from behind those eyes almost in a trance as your display of pain feeds its hunger.

As the energy drains from you, the monster feeds.

The monster is constantly hungry. If It gets too hungry it rages, so it must continually feed.  And you…their favorite source of food…are their primary meal.

Those cold eyes drink your blood like a vampire feeding with its teeth sink deep into the victim’s neck, sucking the dripping blood as it runs greedily down their chin.

If you were to imagine a starving vampire’s feeding frenzy…that would be close to what is going on behind those eyes…that emotionless, responseless stare…that fleeting glint of black, covering all the white in their eyes…then subsiding into an icy cold hazy, glazed over look.

This is a look that you should run from when see it.

That blank stare when you are pouring out your emotion to them. That stare that happens when they deny any accountability for the hurt they have brought into your life.

That icy cold anger that is conveniently covered over by a blank expression from two glazed over eyes. A state that looks almost inhuman in its lack of perceivable emotion.

The cold state of the narcissist is concealing the fact that they are trying to keep the beast from coming unhinged. They don’t really care what you are saying. They are drinking in your pain.

Narcissists and psychopaths enjoy negative supply at least as much as positive supply.

As long as they are the one causimg you to feel the emotions, then they have food.

Sometimes you can create a narcissistic injury by disagreeing with them, or by expecting to be treated as an equal to them. The state that comes from their trying to conceal their contempt for you will create one of the icyest stares of all. You have questioned their authority to Lord over you. After all would be nothing without them… would you?

You owe them for your very existence…and more importantly…you owe them big time for allowing you access to their presence in your life.

Make no mistake…the narcissist considers you are getting a great blessing to be allowed within their presense, never mind allowed to be a part of their inner circle.

You have been extended a great gift from the narcissist’s point of view. You had better act right and give up any ideas of re-attaining your personal freedom.

The beast that lies behind those black eyes is not a tolerant one. It expects your complete obedience no matter how confusing their needs might seem to be for you to meet.

That icy state is to dehumanize you…to make you feel beneath them. If you continue to question them, then the narcissist or psychopath will have to teach you a lesson. It’s for your own good of course.

You have to learn. After all, the beast cannot be questioned. Those eyes warn you not to press the issue, less you take on a harsher lesson rather than just a warning.

 

Abusive Partners “Bait and Switch” the Relationship

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One of the reasons I hear from my clients that makes it hard for certain people to to leave an abusive relationship, is that they are not fully sure in their own minds if the partner is abusive them intentionally. 

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Here’s the thing…It doesn’t really matter. 

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If someone is making you feel like you are crazy and interfering with your ability to live and thrive, then it is okay to leave them. 

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But what about the agreement? What about the commitment that I made to that person? 

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A commitment like  a marriage or a partner agreement had two sides to it. You are not the only one who should be accountable for your behaviors. You are not responsible for keeping up your end of a verbal or written contract, when the other person acts as if they have no obligation to that contract. 

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When you ask “What about my commitment?” …what you really should be asking is “What about the partner’s side to that agreement?”

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Have they made a “bait and switch” arrangement with you. You can look up the term bait and switch on google and you will find how it is used in the context of business deals.

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If you see an advertisement for a certain product at a price that you find fair, and then the sales person tries to get you to buy a different product (usually more expensive) , telling you that the original product is no longer available, then this might be a bait and switch.If they advertised the original product with no intention of giving you that product. and with the premeditated plan of talking you into the other one. then it is a bait and switch.

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How does the narcissist or psychopath pull of a bait and switch?

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Well, it is really the same thing as the way this tactic is used in business. Your partner pretended that a certain kind of relationship was available to you. They manufactured a personality that you would like, and then lured you with that persona.

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They had no intention of fulfilling any promises they made you. They had no intention of keeping up that personality during the relationship. They were aware that they had no desire to maintain a fair and balanced relationship.

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Now, we come back to the question of the partner’s behavior being intentional and whether or not the particular person is aware of their behavior being unfair and abusive. 

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Here’s the thing…

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If this is an adult that is unaware when they are being abusive to you, then you do not want to be with them. If this adult is incapable of understanding how adult relationships work, then you will never have a fulfilling relationship with them. 

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So, whether or not they are aware that their behavior is abusive….if this person is abusive to you, then you do not need to feel obligated to stay in the relationship, or to be “a good person” by putting up with a miserable relationship. 

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It is a bait and switch if the person has intentionally mislead you. If they have not intentionally mislead you…then why did their behavior dramatically change after a few months of being in the relationship?

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How could they be thoughtful and kind to you for a few months, and then suddenly change into a completely different person who is cruel and selfish?

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If they were able to maintain a certain persona during the idealization phase. then truly they are probably fully aware that they manipulated you into falling for them by pretending to be someone they are not. 

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But if they acted like a selfless, caring person until they entrapped you, and then changed their behavior in a dramatic way after that…and they are not aware that they did that…then this is a disordered person that you cannot change, and you will not be able to have a loving relationship with. 

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The issue of whether or not the person knows how abusive they are simply cannot be a factor in whether or not you have to feel obligated to continue to tolerate their abuse. You are not “a bad person” if you leave the relationship. 

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In fact, if they suddenly change back into that thoughtful person again, just when you mention wanting to eave them, then that should be your clue as to whether or not they are able to control their behavior. This should be a clue to you, as to whether or not the person is intentionally being selfish and abusive.

 

Dealing with Narcissists Everywhere

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Once you begin to study narcissism and psychopathy, you begin to  realize how many narcissists you have crossed paths with over the years.

The behaviors of pathological people are often hard to understand. You are likely to leave interactions with them feeling confused and crushed down.

When you are interacting with a narcissist, your thoughts and feelings are discounted. Any reasoning you try to do with them is met with a brick wall.

It is often better not to even give them reasons for your thoughts and feelings. Giving them reasons, just causes them to laugh at, mimimize and disregard you as a person.

They like to train you not to try to reason with them. They do not want to hear any side of things other than their own.

They will train you with rewards and punishments…. but mostly punishments. You will get anxiety when you even think about trying to get them to hear your side of a situation.

The narcissist will systematically train you to associate negative feelings with discussing anything with them. After having to feel embarrassed, insignificant, dumb, and guilty from repeated interactions with them, your brain will activate the fight or flight mode when you are picturing a conversation with them.

In your mind, you can play out scenarios. You can run through scenes in your head, based on different ways you can approach them and different things you can say to get them to see your side. But these scenes will always play out with the narcissistic getting the upper hand.

They will twist your words around. They will intentionally misconstrue what you are saying. They will use selective hearing, to miss important details of what you say.

You will find your reasons minimized pr disregarded, even if they are based on research that you can show them. They will not look at any proof you have, to back uo your reasons.

Your feelings will always be discounted and you will be made to feel that you have no right to ask them to consider your feelings.

Narcissists have no respect for your boundaries. They do not care how situations will affect you. You simply do not matter to them.

Healing from Narcissistic Abuse Videos

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Come over to the Annie Mimi Hall  YouTube channel and watch videos about narcissistic abuse, emotional abuse, and healing from abuse.