Wednesday, February 14, 2018

GASLIGHTING - DOES THIS SOUND FAMILIAR?


This is a repost because I continue to run into people who go through this particular experience, which is very unpleasant.

Have you ever fallen in love with someone who made you question your own sanity?  Have you caught your significant other in a compromising position, yet you somehow ended up being the one who is guilty?  Have friends you've had for years suddenly stopped calling because they've been told you're "crazy" or a "psycho bitch"?  You're not alone, and NO, nothing is mentally wrong with you. But you are in an emotionally abusive relationship.  



If you've ever seen the black and white classic movie Gas Light from 1944, you may remember how Charles Boyer did everything he could to make his wife Ingrid Bergman go insane in an attempt to gain her money.  
I watched this movie and was horrified at the things he did. The technical term for gas lighting is someone who repeatedly tricks a person into questioning his or her memory or perception of events with the use of lies, omissions of the actual facts, or falsehoods. 

Your husband told you he would be home to pick you up for dinner, yet when he arrives late, he said he told you he had to work late and you must have misheard him.

You know you heard your lover in the background with another woman in your home while you were on the phone, but you're accused of being delusional.  You're emphatic that you left $35.00 on the bed stand, and now it's mysteriously missing.  Your best friend took a picture of your man driving around town with another woman, but he'll tell you it's his cousin whom you've never heard of. With your own eyes, you've seen another woman walking across the street to get into his truck or car, but he denies your claims. 

Right in front of you he texts at certain periods of the day, and when caught, he yells that you're a nag, then tells you "that's not what I was doing". If you tell his family how he's been acting, no one believes it.  These are some of the stories I hear about all the time.

 
Meanwhile, he tells anyone who will listen that something is wrong with you.  The close friendships you had are now over.  


That's the gist of being emotionally abused. It's a covert tactic to control and manipulate the victim, who just happens to be you. It's difficult to see, so it may be very hard to prove. 

In my opinion, a man who does this has no balls, and it makes me angry.  Instead of being truthful, he gets joy from making you think that you're imagining things. You're put down, degraded, called names, and yelled at for no reason.  Normal conversations are very rare. 


Sharing your own feelings are nonexistent. Nothing you say or do is right.  If something goes wrong in life, you get blamed. When he loses his car keys, it's all your fault. Maybe you've gained weight from the stress, and told that no one will want you anyway. You should be lucky he's even around. There are days the tears are endless, hoping he will treat you with the dignity or respect you deserve. You just want to be loved unconditionally. Sadly, you feel alone. 

Living like this can be a nightmare, but all is not lost.  Some women reach their breaking point and just walk away.  But the thought of having no money or a place to live can be frightening. The fear of what people may think  makes you want to curl into a ball of despair.


Starting today, look in the mirror and believe that you are beautiful and strong because you are.  Keep telling yourself that you deserve to be happy every day. Think about all the things you used to do.
Then document, document, document!  Keep dates, places, situations and names if you can. Be specific. Use a Planner, notebook or a diary.  Even better, send emails to yourself or a family member, and make sure your password is protected. Not only will this make you feel better, but you'll also have a detailed record for legal reasons.
If you have access to cash, send yourself a Moneygram or Western Union. You are the only person who can ever gain access to those funds. Walk around the block to clear your mind every day. Even if it's just for 5 minutes. Look in the mirror to remind yourself how beautiful you are.  Try to make a safety plan.  If you are unable to speak with a pastor or close friend you can trust who supports you, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 800-799-7233 

They are experts in all phases, and will provide shelter to those in need. They also have a Chat Line. There are also local places to contact wherever you live.

It's 2018, yet there are literally thousands of people who minimize this type of abuse or think that it's okay. "Words will never hurt me" is a lie. In fact, I hear that "it's not that serious" all the time.  Verbal abuse is still considered a part of domestic violence.  It is what it is.

You deserve the joy that life has to offer. It doesn't matter if you're 18 or 80!

Remember, 2018 is your year to start over!




















84 comments:

  1. Ro, I think most abuse starts with emotional abuse. I dealt with this in my marriage, I've always been someone who never thought I would put up with that but I found myself in the middle of it not understanding how I got there. When I came to the decision that I didn't care about anything but getting out I found the strength to move on. I started analyzing how I got there and I could actually pin point the day it started, he said something that I phoo phoo'd and because I did it escalated. We need to stand up for ourselves right away and be prepared to walk away immediately.

    I hope all women that are in this situation find the strength to walk away, it was the best thing I ever did for myself xox

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    1. Lovely Launna, you absolutely hit the nail right on the head, and analyzed it perfectly! As strong women, we tell ourselves it won't happen, but because we minimize it initially, it soon spirals out of control. I'm so thrilled that you got out and have your life back. You are the best! Hugs...

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  2. It's sad to think that so many people are in emotionally abusive relationships.

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    1. It totally makes me hurt, angry and frustrated at the same time that this goes on. Hugs...

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  3. My mom's friend went through this and two of my aunts. They really struggled with knowing what was truth or deception b/c of the messing with the mind stuff. You have some good strong advice there at the end.

    Thanks so much for addressing this.

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    1. This had to be rough on friends and family, and I imagine everyone was wondering how to fix the situation. That struggle is something many people just don't get or understand. Thanks so much for sharing, Sophia, and I'm thrilled that your mom's friend and your aunts have their lives back. Hugs...

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    1. I hope someone can read this and know that she is not alone.Hugs....Angela!

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  5. Yeah, it's a favorite behavior of abusers...and narcissists. I did date a guy who was all Romeo on me until one day he abruptly decided he wasn't. And then I was the psycho for wondering what went wrong. I didn't stalk him or anything...but he didn't bring out the best in my personality when he suddenly went from lovey-dovey to cold as ice. I think he may have had a large degree of narcissism. He was VERY into himself and he still can't keep a relationship going for long...

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    1. OMG Steph, that had to be quite a shock! But that's how most of them start out, I think. They lean on bringing out the worst to make others think badly of you, when they are the culprits. I read somewhere that narcissists fail in 95% of their relationships. That's a super high percentage. Thank goodness you kicked him to the curb.

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  6. This is absolutely terrifying to think about. Reading this and knowing these kinds of horror stories are the reality of so many people makes me very grateful that I'm in a loving and supportive marriage where we are a team. Gaslight is one of the creepiest movies I've ever seen. It's been years since I've watched it but I remember every little detail.

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    1. I love hearing about good relationships Kathy, because so often I hear about the bad side that people want to get out of. It's all about teamwork and support for sure. It was a crazy movie. I couldn't believe the things he was doing to his own wife! Hugs...

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  7. Wow, imagine being in a situation like that, yikes... Will have to check out the movie.

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    1. Very sad for sure. The movie will definitely have you scratching your head. Thanks so much for stopping by! Hugs...

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  8. It is scary and too many people are going through this right now.

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    1. I know, right? Something like this for someone to deal with is very sad and frightening. Hope you're doing well today Kim. Hugs...

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  9. So most of these memes just reminded me of my relationship with my sister.. warning flag maybe?!?! - http://www.domesticgeekgirl.com

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  10. I think this will resonate with most of us for one relationship or another. Great advice Ro. #getsocial2017 (Bambi Unbridled)

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    1. Hey There Jen, and thanks for stopping by! Sadly, that is a true statement. What saddens me is that there are men who do this to women and don't feel bad about it at all. Crazy!

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  11. Sadly I've had a number of women do that in regular friendships. People can really suck, can't they? :/

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    1. Girl, don't get me started. (lol) Hugs...

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  12. Wow. I wouldn't have thought of a Moneygram. What a great idea. I'm assuming it can sit, without being cashed in, for an indefinite time?

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    1. Good question, Sandra. I asked about that once when someone sent me a moneygram because I forgot my ID. The cashier told me not to worry about it, it'll be sitting here waiting until you pick it up. No one else can get it without the proper ID and reference number. Interesting, By the way, I can't tell you how much I appreciate your kindness in giving me a shout out. I'm a celebrity for a day. (lol) Hugs...

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  13. Such an important post. Thanks for sharing this difficult topic.

    #GetSocial17

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    1. Hey Melissa and thanks for stopping by. It's great when people can get the word out about the craziness of domestic violence. Hugs...

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  14. It's so sad that anyone would have to live with someone who did this to them.

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    1. You got that right, Mary! Hugs...

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  15. You're been sharing some important information. Thank you!

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    1. Hey Angela, I found a restaurant in Philly sounded so cool, and is called "Love and Honey Fried Chicken" located at 1100 Front Street. I sure wish I could airmail myself there to check this out for the weekend. (lol) Hope yours is as great as you are! I hope one tip can make a difference from someone in trouble. Hugs...

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  16. I found your blog thanks to Sandra Cox. :)

    Such an important post! I have never heard of the term gas lighting and haven't seen the movie you mentioned. You gave such great advice. Thanks so much for sharing. :)
    ~Jess

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    1. Sandra is so amazing, right? The fact that there are people in the world who do these mean-spirited things is frightening, so I hope a few words make a difference for someone. I am so thrilled that you stopped by to say hello, Jess and hope your weekend is fabulous! Hugs...

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  17. I love this post - it has some great information. Gaslighting is just horrible, but it happens to a lot of people and THEY feel like they are the problem.

    -Lauren

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    1. Hey Lauren, and thanks so much for the kind words. I just pray that something on here can help someone in trouble. No one should have to deal with this nightmare. Hope you have an absolutely fabulous weekend! Hugs...

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  18. That sounds so bad, and I am sure there are plenty of girls out there doubting themselves.

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    1. I know right? The fact that a person would treat another human being like this makes me very angry. It happens more than you can imagine. Thanks so much for stopping by, Tamara! Hugs...RO

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    1. Thanks a bunch Terry. Hope your day is fantastic! Hugs...RO

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  20. What a great post, Ro. There's a lot of good ideas and information. I've never heard the term "gas lighting". I don't know if I'd be able to stomach that movie.

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    1. It's a darn shame that the word even exists Kristin, and I can tell you that the movie really had my head spinning. Hug and Happy Friday! RO

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  21. I really love it that you post things like that. So important! I hope the people who sorely need this advice will be able to read this material. I hope they find it...

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    1. Thanks so much for your kind words and offering support. Hope your Friday is fabulous! Hugs...RO

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  22. I do love the mirror thing, we should all do it

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    1. It is a way to make us love ourselves for sure. Hugs and Happy Friday! RO

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  23. I remember that film well. Some people only feel good when they are harming others. This is a very informative post. Hugs, Valerie

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    1. I've seen it 3 times, and each time I learned something new. It's sad that people actually enjoy doing things like this. Hugs...and Happy Friday Valerie! RO

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  24. I am pleased you included the part about properly documenting such behaviour. Even that act might be enough to motivate you to act and move on.

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    1. You make a good point Andrew. Sometimes actually seeing it all written down can be the "aha" moment to change things. Hugs...RO

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  25. I am happy your highlighting suck an important issue!! So many women don;t realize that emotional abuse can be just as toxic as physical abuse. Awesome Memes as well! Tori @ In Tori Lex

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    1. The emotional abuse really lowers a person's self esteem, and it's so draining. Thanks so much for your support Tori! Hugs...RO

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  26. I hate to think of anyone being in this kind of situation.
    Good info for those that are, that's for sure.
    Happy Valentine's, Rockin Ro.
    Hugs

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    1. It is definitely a nightmare and very sad, Sandra. I hope someone can read this and get help. Hugs...RO

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  27. Thanks for sharing this, it's awful that anyone would have to deal with this, but I bet it's more common than we even think.

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    1. Sadly, it is. I hate to see or hear about situations like this, because it drains a person, and really lowers self esteem. Hugs...RO

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  28. I had a relationship with a friend that was similar to this. I finally had to "break up" with her for my own mental health. Thanks for continuing to share this very important information.

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    1. Wow! That had to be rough to cope with Lana. Thank goodness, you weere able to move on. Hugs...RO

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  29. while reading you i found the name of movie familier and when i saw the trailer i remembered that i have watched this movie almost 28 years back .

    excellent writing here ,very inspiring and thought provoking!!!

    i agree that in each relationship such periods come when people try to mad each other for different reasons , who ignore such abusive behaviours do wrong to themselves and consequences are dangerous .

    i was never one of them who gave up and beard it .
    i never ever did bad to anyone and never ever allowed to do bad to me simply !
    thank you so much for uplifting piece of writing

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    1. I've seen it three times, and the only place I ran across it was on Turner Classic Movies. Seeing it happen in a movie makes you think, but actually living it is like being on a rollercoaster that never stops. You're right, it can be dangerous. Thank goodness you found the love of your life and are so happy. Your love story is so wonderful. Hugs...RO

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  30. Thank you for bringing attention to this important issue.

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    1. Very sad that it even occurs, Angela. Happy Friday and Hugs...RO

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  31. I had a boyfriend try to gaslight me once. In fact, he did it several times until I told him the problem was his, not mine. Good for you for reposting this.

    BTW, have you checked your e-mail? If not, please do.

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    1. Thank goodness you got out of that relationship Elizabeth. Had to be a nightmare to deal with. Going to check email right now. I usually check it first thing and came over here instead because I'm trying to play catch up as usual. (lol) Hugs...RO

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  32. Just stopping by on the way to the dentist to say hope today is a grand one and don't forget your aerobics:)
    Hugs,

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    1. I hope you're now pain free from that dang root canal Super Sandra, and ready to eat some really yummy food. Happy Friday and HUGE Hugs...RO

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  33. It is sickening...

    You do good work, to help such people.

    I don't believe we will get "Jewels In Our Crown." :-) But if anyone will get them, you will!!!!!!

    Hugs, hugs, hugs, hugs, hugs

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    1. LOL! Your words are very kind and much appreciated. Hope your Friday is fantastic! Hugs...RO

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  34. Thank you for the lovely comment you left in my blog, yesterday. Thank you much!

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    1. You're quite welcome, and I hope you're feeling much better today. Sending some cyber hugs your way. RO

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  35. It's sad that someone would do this to another person. Thanks for putting this info out there.

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    1. It is sad Mary, and I'll never understand it. Hugs...RO

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  36. RO, this is so important for people to hear. It makes me sick to think of this happening to people, and it can be hard to get out of. Kudos to you for posting not just an explanation, but specific steps people (I would say women, but it isn't always women, though they are certainly by far the majority) can take to get out of the relationship and get help.

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    1. I cringe every time I see or hear about it Lark. I've actually watched the movie 3 times because it teaches me something new each time. That people can be this cruel for their own self interests is crazy. True, it happens more to women, but I've heard some horror stories from men who have suffered as well, or those even in same sex relationships. Sadly, things won't change, and the relationship never improves, meaning the partner needs to run! Hugs...RO

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  37. Yes, I've read about this happening to people. Its sad that people can be so inhuman and abusive towards others. Thanks for posting this.

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    1. It's really a sad situation for sure. Hugs and Happy Friday! RO

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  38. I heard of the word, but never knew what it meant

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    1. It's a sad thing that the word was ever created, Adam. I hate so much that any human being would make another person suffer like this and sleep comfortably at night. Hugs...RO

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  39. Definitely bears repeating. Thanks, Radiant Ro! You're our light. :)

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    1. You're always so supportive Sophia! I really appreciate you! Hugs and Happy Friday! RO

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  40. Emotional Abuse is just as damaging as physical and people often don't see it. Great post Ro, people really need to understand.

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    1. It really hurts Kimberly for sure. Thanks for the support, as always! Hugs...RO

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  41. I don't remember hearing the term gaslighting. Now I am curious about that movie, too. I am so glad you are reposting this and reminding people that verbal and emotional abuse is very definitely abuse. Keeping records is so important and I also think putting money somewhere is another great tip. With cell phones, people could maybe even record some conversations (for their own sanity). Thanks for sharing and continuing to help others!!

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    1. Hey There Stephanie and hope all is well! It's sad that this term even came into existence, but it's so sad for those who go through it. I hope you get a chance to check this out. Great idea about the recording of calls. Hugs...RO

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  42. I seem to only fall in love with meant hat make me question my sanity. It’s horrible habit that I just can’t seem to break. Emotional abuse is just as bad as physical abuse in my book. I’ve never seen Gas Light but I l love old movies, I’m going to have to check it out! Have a great weekend Ro :)

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    1. You're a beautiful and talented woman, and I know there's someone out there who will love and adore you as you deserve. You're right about the verbal abuse. It can be bad. I try to look for warning flags in conversations right away these days. Hugs...RO

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