If you’re unfamiliar with the word gaslighting you’re definitely not alone. Whilst it’s a technique utilized by sociopaths and narcissists everywhere, not many people know about it, even if it’s been practiced on them before.
What is gaslighting? The word originates from an old-fashioned 1940s movie in which a husband wants his wife to feel as though she’s losing her rationality, so he begins manipulating specific aspects of her reality until her mental state starts to break down.
Gaslighting isn’t always apparent at first and it’s not always practiced by a spouse or meaningful other, so it’s good to be informed of how it begins and what it looks like.
Here are five signs that you or a loved one are being gaslighted by a toxic person in your life.
If a person in your life is continually making choices for you and seeking to dictate the emotions that you’re feeling, there’s a good possibility that they’ve been gaslighting you for a lengthy time. You don’t require somebody to talk for you when it comes to how you think and what you want out of life.
When you’re being gaslighted, your natural abilities typically raise a flag that something is amiss. Gaslighters who always put you down, make you feel vulnerable and attempt to destroy your spirit aren’t exactly the kind of people you want to chat about with people who really care about you.
If you’re ever withholding aspects of the relationship from others because you know that it’s bad, that’s a clue something is amiss. Not to mention, this is precisely what gaslighters want, to separate you from the people who care about you so that you come to completely depend on them.
Gaslighters lie, manipulate, contradict and lie about every minute aspect of your world. They’re never liable for anything that bothers you and never admit to any wrongdoing on their part. They will flat-out refuse things ever occurred and will deceive and manipulate to make you feel as though you’re the one in the wrong, not them.
Finally, you begin to examine whether or not the reality you’re seeing is really real.
At a certain point, you recognize that everything you say the narcissist uses against you, therefore you begin to believe that you’re better off just staying quiet. Feeling suffocated and miserable in your space is a good indication that you’re being gaslighted.
When the last thing you want is to be scolded and disparaged, it’s easy to simply tell lies. If you have even the tiniest idea that the truth will set the gaslighter off on some cynical rhetoric, why not just tell them what they want to hear? You shouldn’t need to lie all the time in order to make a relationship work.
It’s a genuine burden being with a gaslighter, it’s really hard work since they are so abusive towards you and you will not flourish being with a person like this. Their sneering comments will get you down and they will ridicule you as much as they can, like ferrets that strive to ransack your brain.
They profit from your suffering with their supremacy and you are their drug but Narcissists actually have a personality disorder in which there is a long-term design of unusual behavior identified by excessive feelings of self-importance, an extreme demand for respect, and a lack of perception of others’ emotions.
People affected by it usually consume a lot of time speculating about gaining control or authority, or about their appearance. They usually take advantage of the people around them. The behavior typically occurs by early adulthood and transpires across a diversity of situations.
Hitler needed to make others suffer and required supreme authority and this was defined by his long-term design of strange behavior, with extreme feelings of self-importance, an intense desire for admiration, and a lack of understanding of others emotions.
The cause of narcissistic personality disorder is unknown. It is a personality disorder classified inside cluster B by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. The examination by a healthcare expert examining the person in question.
The condition needs to be distinguished from insanity and substance use disorder.
Treatments have not been well investigated. Treatment is usually hard as people with the disease often do not think themselves to have a problem. The personality was first reported in 1925 by Robert Waelder whilst the modern name for the condition came into practice in 1968.
Approximately one percent of people are thought to be affected at some time in their life. It seems to happen more frequently in males than females and affects young people more than older people.
People with narcissistic personality dysfunction are recognized by their defined grandiosity, total need for attention, and a contempt and lack of perception for others. These people normally display overconfidence, a sense of power, and power-seeking behaviors.
Narcissistic personality dysfunction is different from having a great feeling of self-confidence, people with NPD typically consider themselves over others to the degree that they ignore the feelings and desires of others and demand to be treated as superior despite their actual status or accomplishments.
In addition, people with NPD may display delicate self-esteem, an inability to endure critique, and a tendency to disparage others in an effort to confirm their, supremacy.
Sounds like many politicians!
According to the DSM-5, people with NPD have most or all of the following traits, typically without commensurate characteristics or achievements:
Grandiosity with prospects of superior treatment from others. Fixated on illusions of control, authority, intelligence, attractiveness, et cetera. Self-perception of being unique, superior and associated with high-status people and institutions. Requiring continuous recognition from others. Feeling of entitlement to special treatment and compliance from others.
Exploitative of others to obtain individual gain. Resistant to sympathize with others’ emotions, desires, or requirements. Deeply jealous of others and the belief that others are equally jealous of them. Pretentious and superior attitude.
With the victims of Narcissism, we frequently come across the profound psychological wounding that spouses or parents have caused. There are many kinds of psychological attack that one can experience but they tend to fall into 2 behavior divisions.
The first kind of assault on a person where another person manipulates the mind, values, expectations and reality of the victim toward some end that helps the agenda of the narcissist or attacking party.
This is a particular assault against oneself by the attacker and has been coined gaslighting.
Each time this crime plays out we see the gas-light street light outside the home go dark. This comparison signifies a sinister darkness fall over the home and also that the wife or partner’s consciousness is dimming through the sustained mental and emotional degradation she is feeling.
The husband or partner attempts to bend and distort his wife or partner’s reality, that in the end, she will accept she is going crazy and as a consequence, will actually go insane. The ultimate purpose of the narcissist is either to break you down, or have a breakdown, so they can control completely or get rid of you in a way that you end up losing your credibility.
The reason they want you to lose all credibility is that they fear you may expose them for all their negative and callous deeds once you escape them. So what they try to do is to destroy you first in the process of disengaging from you.
Gaslighting is a kind of psychological abuse practiced by narcissists in order to instill in their victim’s an acute feeling of fear and uncertainty to the point where they no longer believe their own mind, thought or judgment.
The methods used in Gaslighting by the narcissist are comparable to those practiced in conditioning, cross-examination, and torment that have been practiced in psychological combat by intelligence operatives, law enforcement, and other organizations for decades.
The purpose is to, in a systematic way, target the sufferer’s mental stability, self-confidence, and self-esteem so that they are no longer equipped to operate in an independent way. Gaslighting requires the abuser to constantly and regularly keep accurate knowledge from the prey, and restoring it with incorrect knowledge.
Because it is subtle, this clever Machiavellian behavior is a profoundly dishonest collection of manipulations that is hard for anyone to work out, and with time it ultimately threatens the mental balance of the victim.
That is why it is a kind of abuse. The emotional destruction of Gaslighting is immense on the narcissistic prey. When they are exposed to it for long enough, they start to forget their understanding of their own self.
Helpless to trust their own decisions, they begin to doubt the existence of everything in their life. They start to see themselves second-guessing themselves, and this makes them become really vulnerable around their decision-making, even around the tiniest of decisions.
The sufferer becomes discouraged and isolated, they become completely reliant on the abuser for their understanding of reality. In effect, the gaslighting turns the sufferer’s existence on its head.
As you can observe, this Gaslighting is a kind of psychological counterinsurgency that is both deliberate and continuous in character among one person (the gaslightee) and another (the gaslighter).
The Gaslighting Effect involves a dishonest set of psychological manipulations that are carried out sequentially in degrees, and duplicated time after time, in order to undermine the mental stability of its prey.
It is truly a convoluted dance, where eventually the innocent gaslightee thinks that they are going insane. Anybody can become the prey of these gaslighting tactics, age, ability, sexuality, and doctrine is no restriction against narcissistic persecution of this kind.
It does not only occur in romantic relations, it can happen in all various kinds of relations, among parent and child, siblings, friends, and work partner. Actually, it can occur among any two people in any position of life if the plan is there.
The gaslighting, as a harassment technique, begins with a set of mental mind games that deliberately rifles on the gaslightee’s poor capacity to endure uncertainty or doubt. This is done in order to undermine the prey’s confidence in their own understanding of reality and understanding of self, therefore ending in uncertainty and confusion for the prey.
Even when the victim is confused and left questioning, “What just happened there?”, there is a hesitation to see the gaslighter for what they are. It is this dismissal that is the foundation of the gaslighting relationship.
Narcissists are puppet masters who manipulate their offerings for individual profit. With accuracy, they are capable of pulling the strings of their victims without discovery and render them incapable.
In order to understand how a person can become a victim of a narcissist in the first place, it is necessary to know that the narcissist has several faces. Many faces are needed by the abuser as they lead the relationship through various stages: The Idealization Stage, Devaluation Stage, and the Discard Stage.
The great discovery is that the gaslighting does not occur all at once, it occurs in degrees, which suggests that if one speculates, in the early stages that they are being gaslighted, they can defend themselves by walking away, physically or metaphorically.
Nevertheless, one must be told as to what those stages look like, in that way, the person will be able to recognize and distinguish what is occurring at these various stages. With this knowledge, one will be able to detect if they are being gaslighted in any interpersonal relationship, whether it is at home, work or socially, and defend themselves by holding the narcissist out of their current area.
Throughout the first idealization stage, the narcissist puts on their best face in order to fashion their prey into a symbiotic relationship with them as their narcissistic stock. In the beginning of the relationship the narcissist showers the prey with attention, they are kind, sweet, flirty, dynamic, interesting, and excellent fun to be with.
They seem to be so comfortable and involved in the relationship, and the innocent prey relishes every minute with their current charismatic companion. They like how the narcissist is so wonderfully intense and how they get high on life, and they too want to absorb this potion with them.
Emotional bonding starts for the prey, and ignorantly, they further assume that the companion thinks the same way about them, that the relationship is mutual, however, this is the narcissist’s greatest trick.
Caught up in this alluring state of happiness, the prey becomes hooked by the gaslighter’s enthusiasm and grand fantasies. In this sort of relationship, victims are known to experience biochemical alterations in the body and structural modifications in the brain.
These exciting hooks produce a discharge of chemicals (endorphins) in the brain, and it is these endorphins, or pleasure substances that make the prey sense the elation in the first stage of the relationship. Like any addict, they become addicted to that high, and pretty quickly they find themselves hooked emotionally to their narcissistic suitor.
Nevertheless, this honeymoon period is only an illusion, all smoke, and mirrors. Having expertly ascertained the victim’s strengths and vulnerabilities, the Idealization Phase is over, and it is time for the devaluation stage of the gaslighting to start.
From here on in, the narcissist appears to become distant, cruel, and even bitingly harsh.
The relationship has now turned into the devaluation phase, and it is as if a deadly freak cloud has settled over the relationship. Virtually overnight the narcissist grows decisively distant and uncaring. The prey’s fall from grace is a hard one, they cannot seem to do anything right anymore, the narcissists admiring words turn to critique, everything the victim tries ends in an adverse effect, and they find themselves depreciated at each corner.
Completely disoriented, the prey has no conception of what is occurring, and they become increasingly stressed, miserable and discouraged with the circumstances. The roller-coaster relationship leaves the prey in a position of perpetual confusion as if always walking on eggshells.
All their strength is focused at justifying themselves, therefore the narcissist is not getting the concrete recognition that they need, this is likely to be the point when the narcissist begins to look for a new provider of narcissistic supply.
The narcissist gas lighting is presently at its crown, and there is no rationalizing with them. Frustrated by the narcissist’s strange conduct, the prey struggles harder and harder to satisfy their abuser in the hopes of getting the relationship back to where it was at the start when it appeared innocuous.
Stripped of their narcissistic drug, the sufferer is quickly forced into extreme withdrawal manifestations. They are distraught with fear, turned inside out with confusion, and robbed of what they thought they had, a soul-mate.
In order to cope with the misery of this profound wound of abandonment and rejection, they escape into a realm of inanimate defense mechanisms, a blend of rationalization, juvenile reactionary patterns, cognitive conflict, trauma bonding et cetera.
Lonely and detached from the physical world, these behaviors becomes their only way of enduring the narcissistic exploitation, and the gaslighting they are now encountering. No matter what they do, they simply appear to produce narcissistic insult to this outsider, and each time they do that, they unwittingly release an almighty wrath down upon themselves, without even knowing how they are doing it.
By simply engaging in these survival tactics, the prey becomes the prisoner that is overly reliant on their captive (Stockholm Syndrome), where unpredictability and ambiguity are the order of their day.
As a consequence, they are now caught in the grotesque masquerade with the narcissist’s pathological flamboyant self, where hell rules best, and they sink into juvenile reactionary patterns of behavior (Regressed Infantilism).
At this stage, they are most likely experiencing the outcomes of Narcissistic Victim Syndrome (NVS), where they are diminished to an obscuration of their past self. Ultimately, they are at the mercy of the whims and desires of their puppet master.
The narcissist hates who their supply person has become, they see them as weak, mediocre and useless victims, however, at the same time, their worthless victim is giving them a generous measure of narcissistic supply.
Therein generates the mistake, the more the prey displays their pain, the more they become narcissistic supply for the abuser, and the more valuable and important the abuser gets to feel. The more valuable and important the abuser appears the more obvious their verbal and physical brutality becomes.
This pull-push situation leaves the narcissist performing in a way that says, “I hate you, but don’t you dare leave me or I will kill you”. They will respond to any seen movement away from them as a threat to their narcissistic supply, consequently, any act of self-determination by the prey will certainly be decreased.
The narcissist is cruel in the way they depreciate the prey. Devaluation of the prey can be achieved through several varying designs and levels of assault, through the sufferer’s own attachment needs, their intellectual skills, physical body, passion, creativity et cetera.
By this time, like Pavlov’s dogs, the prey has been trained and looks to the external world that they are active associates in the narcissist’s convoluted dance. Even if they do succeed to flee from that narcissistic person, they are at great danger of future re-victimization and deception with other narcissists, since they are primed in a way that other narcissists can recognize.
In this period, the tournament comes to its ultimate end. What started out as the magnification of a victim by the narcissist, is fated to die with the glorification of the narcissist by the victims over dependence.
Once this occurs, the narcissist passion for the game has watered, in their eyes, they have already won the game, and the game is over. By this time, the narcissist is completely impervious to any needs or wishes that the prey may have, in effect, they no longer exist in their mind.
Not so for the prey, they are left bewildered and raw with emotion and are anxious to uncover answers in order to fix the failing relationship. Nevertheless, the narcissist opposes all efforts to save the relationship, they will dominate with silence, or if there is any sort of acknowledgment, it will be fiercely indifferent.
In effect, the prey has become worthlessly inferior to them, they know they have drained the victim dry, that they have now outlasted their value, and presently it is time for the narcissist to move on to the next source of supply.
Any attempt to get them back by the sufferer will only feed the narcissist’s self-esteem, and further provide them with a temporary source of narcissistic supply.
Gaslighting is an intense form of emotional exploitation used by the narcissistic gaslighter to manipulate the innocent prey. The consequences of gaslighting are so dishonest, that they can lead to the sufferer losing all trust in their own judgment and reality.
The prey’s first response to the gaslighting behavior is one of total disbelief, they cannot understand the abrupt transition towards them or indeed the reality that they are being gaslighted in the first place.
All they know is that something very strange appears to be occurring in the relationship, however, they cannot figure out what it is that is occurring. Of course, this is exactly what the abuser requires, after all, it would not work if the prey knew what was occurring.
The techniques used by the narcissist in the first idealization stage of the relationship advances in such a way that it practically ensures that the prey will become hooked entirely and exclusively to their narcissistic abuser.
Blinded by their love after been completely seduced, the prey generally, trusts genuinely that their love is reciprocated, but of course, this is wrong and a complete lie. Where once the abuser’s conversation with the victim had been open and stayed inside the relationship, it has now become blocking and redirecting.
All they know is that where the narcissist had previously held them in good heart, they have now become very critical of them. The comfort and care that had been free have now turned to hatred and hostility.
When the prey wants to rationally examine what is occurring in the relationship, they are faced with reserve, or worse, they discover that everything that is being spoken is bent or trivialized.
It is necessary to understand that the gaslighting does not need to be severe in order to have drastic results on the prey, it can be as subtle as being told that “you are so sensitive”, or that they should not do something because “you are not able to do it, leave it to me”.
Even though the prey can reason that these comments are wrong, slowly their confidence is being eroded away to such an amount that they cannot trust themselves. Gaslighting strikes, such as moving objects from place to place, and then the abuser disputing that they had removed the article actually generates enormous confusion to the prey.
Or saying something, then later denying that they had said such a thing. All of this psychological combat has the effect of making the prey question their own mind or understanding of events. Desperate for the gaslighter’s support and reassurance that they are not going insane, the victim becomes extremely dependent on their narcissistic abuser for a sense of reality.
At this stage, the victim still has enough of their self to resist and protect themselves against the gaslighting manipulation. Nevertheless, the narcissist’s gaslighting is starting to do what it is designed to do, that is, to drive the victim off-balance by producing self-doubt, distress, confusion, and guilt.
This emotional damage causes the prey, over time, to lose their sight of reality and understanding of self. Becoming lost, frustrated, and powerless to trust their own abilities and memory, they tend to separate themselves slightly because of the guilt they feel.
Before long their psychic strength becomes worn, and they are left helpless to protect themselves from the terrible gaslighting effect. At this stage, the person’s whole system may feel that it is in danger of annihilation.
From birth, nature creates inanimate defense mechanisms and adaptive responses in order to defend the child from annihilation from early trauma, and these same defenses continue during life whenever we are exposed to very stressful encounters that threaten us with annihilation.
When the child begins life, they encounter the world as a scary place, so in order to overcome their anxiety, they must create an emotional connection with somebody in order to overcome their fear and concern.
They recognize and bond with their chief caregiver, normally the Mother, and of course, they are pretty likely, at some time in the future, to encounter her as their first aggressor. A mother can be encountered by the child as being both threatening and kind, and this appears to lead to the child turning to emotional bonding for survival.
This psychological state is known to-day as “Stockholm Syndrome”. It is seen to occur everywhere in situations where people find themselves to be held captive and in fear of their lives, as in abduction, hostage situations, and narcissistic abuse.
This phenomenon of trauma bonding with the narcissist offender can be seen in Narcissistic Victim Syndrome. In Stockholm Syndrome, the victim adjusts to the traumatic situation by automatically going into a regressive mode, where they revert to childish juvenile patterns of response (Regressed Infantilism), and bond with their captor as they did with their mother earlier in life as a defense against annihilation.
In order to cope with the pain of living within such insanity, the victim’s motivational drive gives a way that they can reason to overcome the conflict they are feeling (Cognitive Dissonance). For the therapist to learn the dynamics of all these defense mechanisms, they will then be able to understand why victims stay in these narcissistic abusive relations, as it is a smart, but difficult unconscious self-survival strategy.
By this stage the prey can barely identify themselves, they are fast becoming a shadow of their past self. Living under oppression within a war zone where they are dominated, physically and emotionally battered, helpless to make choices, reduced to endless rages, sucked dry, shredded of dignity and safety, they live a dreary life.
They start to believe that they can’t do anything right anymore, they don’t believe that they can trust their own judgment, and they withdraw with a skewed reality of what is actually taking place. They disappear into the darkness.
Many sufferers will also go on to experience Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). The investigation of PTSD can be performed based on specific markers being present, and these markers fall into three sections:
Reliving: Flashbacks, rude symbolism, dreams, fear et cetera
Avoidance: Avoiding people, situations or feelings, emotional numbing, loss of interest, hopelessness et cetera.
Arousal: Trouble concentrating, anger, outbreaks of violence, restlessness, hypervigilance et cetera.
With Narcissistic Victim Syndrome, sufferers are taken to a place of annihilation and destruction on various levels of self, whilst encountering gaslighting behavior in their narcissistic relationships.
When a journey of rehabilitation, the person as an individual needs to know what was happening to them as their story unfolds.
People constantly battle with a collection of responses, from confusion to mistrust, great sorrow, blame, guilt, resentment, anxiety, thought, separation and a host of physical manifestations, such as panic attacks, flashbacks, anxious negative thoughts, weakness, eating disturbances, severance, abreaction et cetera, but they further display release at ultimately knowing what had been going on in the relationship, and the number of losses they were dealing with.
It is also astonishing how surprisingly flexible sufferers are and all our strategies for surviving are amazingly brilliant and each and every one of us is a mentor for our knowledge and perception of what has happened to us.
When this occurs, it allows for all the fragmented pieces of the soul to return home where they become like special patrons at a grand Feast, one uniting the whole, assembling at the Table of Recovery.
When a therapist encounters this work, they will honestly understand and appreciate the profound pain those victims have gone through every day. The fact that these people have endured the torturous effects of the chaotic narcissistic personality disorder is in itself a marvel and a testament to the human spirit.
Because a sufferer has had their self-esteem consumed by the endless gaslighting, they live in dread of doing the incorrect thing and making their situation even more precarious for themselves. They constantly find themselves questioning “what if”, and constantly attempting to second guess themselves.
This usually affects how they problem-solve and make choices in their life.
Projection and guilt are the trademarks of gaslighting, and the prey becomes hyper-sensitive to the endless humiliation of their abuser. They hear many times that they are too sensitive, that they quickly start to accept the distortions.
As a consequence, they look for approval before doing something, afraid that they will make more blunders that will end in more humiliation. This kind of gaslighting makes the prey question everything about themselves, so they continually question, “Am I being too sensitive”.
Living with the narcissistic Dr. Jekyll and Mr Hyde, the sufferer finds themselves constantly apologizing for never doing things right, they even apologize for their very existence, it is a way of avoiding more conflict with their aggressor. An apology is not simply something the sufferer does to be kind, it is a powerful approach for staying protected whilst in the war zone, and a means to pacify the wrath of the gaslighter.
Most importantly, the power of an apology is that it can take the guilt off the narcissist and redirect it towards the prey, consequently bypassing some of the narcissist’s anger.
If one lives under the perpetual oppression of the gaslighting narcissist, they can expect heights of malignant hatred. Many sufferers go through the physical and mental pain that can induce them to suffer a character conversion, leaving them feeling bewildered, alone, scared and miserable.
Frequently they proceed to take this grief with them, even after they escape from the abuser.
Sufferers endure great embarrassment about their circumstances, they get weary of attempting to cover up their exploitation as they go along. When well-meaning friends and family members tell them they are being abused, they evade the problem, and quickly they learn to reserve giving more information in order to evade more opposition.
The importance of guilt in narcissistic exploitation is a complex issue, however, it’s not too hard to accept that the atrocities of the gaslighting narcissist brand the prey to their very essence. Their guilt is a natural response to the social failure they so frequently feel as a result of their exploitation, exempli gratia, the embarrassment of being powerless to defend themselves from their exploitation.
This embarrassment can be viewed as defensiveness and withdrawal by others. The relationship between embarrassment and social supports is too complicated to dispense with here.
The purpose of gaslighting is to dominate and control the existence of the gaslightee. It only works when the sufferer is oblivious of what is actually occurring. The more the prey questions their own existence or ability, the more reliant they become of the abuser.
It is a cruel cycle of events that is completely baffling to the prey, and that is precisely what the gaslighter requires.
To be entangled in the narcissistic entanglement of deceit and deception is comparable to being a house fly caught in the spider’s web. When entering the web, does the prey know that it is about to be wrapped up and swallowed alive any more than the fly?
The response is no. Nevertheless, the narcissistic entanglement is akin to the disintegration of the person, the prey, under the threat of constant danger, creates a psychic connection with the abuser in order to evade fragmentation of the individual.
In creating that relationship they are forced to adapt themselves to their idealized abuser’s wishes and surrender their true potential. Having to ask for approval to do anything, not being permitted to have their own mind, never allowed to win the argument, continually being punished and shamed, compromising their own beliefs, preferences, wants, and belief.
Naturally, caught in this trellis they lose all freedom, even their capacity to make choices for their own self.
You have the feeling that you used to be a rather different person, more positive, more fun-loving, and more carefree: In order to survive, the prey starts with what is termed the narcissists dance.
This is an oblivious defense tool which serves to keep the prey protected, but in so doing they practically lose themselves by satisfying, complying, and pacifying. This becomes part of their way of being, a great pleaser with everyone.
Unless this unconscious dance, in therapy, and the prey is taught about narcissistic behavior, they are actually left exposed to becoming Narcissistic Supply yet again. The understanding is that they are conditioned, like Pavlov’s dogs in a way that makes them a target for other greedy narcissists, who are always on the pursuit for new stock and are ready to find those primed already.
What had previously appeared like paradise has now turned into a hell. There is no harmony or happiness in this place, just panic, and destruction. Life loses all confidence as if the light has been turned off.
All that survives is the thick black vapor of depression. Furthermore, the sufferer is compelled to exist in a state of acquiescence in order to survive. Their thoughts of reality are constantly threatened by the gaslighting pretense, so they end up losing faith in their intuition, thought, or thinking skills.
They are spun deceptions, distortions that tell them that they are over-sensitive, imagining, stupid, ridiculous, over-reacting and that they have no right to be disconcerted. Listening to this time and time again, their existence is turned inside out, and they start to think that this may all be correct.
The narcissist’s form of psychological injury has succeeded to instill in their prey an acute feeling of fear and uncertainty to the point where they no longer believe their own mind, thought or perception. In this situation, they are definitely a prisoner.
Nevertheless, many succeed to get the strength to break loose, but this is normally after many extreme efforts. However, when they do eventually escape, in time they may find their way to a therapy room.
The role of the therapist is to not just to do the rehabilitation work with them, but further to educate them about the characteristics and outcomes of narcissistic abuse. That way the therapist can give them back their existence and control, and they will be in a position to be able to recognize the narcissist at work and be equipt to defend themselves against additional re-victimization.
Never undervalue the power of rehabilitation of these people, the fact that they have endured such severe injury is a testimonial to their strength and courage. Never fail to be amazed at the flexibility of the human spirit.
The narcissist chooses people because they are the torch to their obscurity and they will suck out a person’s life. They don’t choose them because they are vulnerable. When they gaslight them they are projecting their own madness on to their victim.
It serves to mask their narcissism when they tell their victims that they are crazy, bad or irrational. They actively endeavor to reduce the moral gap between the abuser and their prey.