Thursday, May 4, 2017

Gaslighting, The Worst Thing That Can Happen To You In A Relationship

“Gaslight” was an American 1944 thriller about a guy slowly driving his wife crazy by making her doubt everything she knows and everything she sees. However, it’s not so much the Academy Awards it won at the time that make it popular today, rather than the fact it recently lent its name to one of the worst forms of manipulation in a relationship: gaslighting.

What Are The Stages of Gaslighting?

By definition, gaslighting does not happen overnight. It takes systematic effort and a plan to work. And there are various degrees to it, from a mild doubt about your judgment to the total eradication of one’s self-worth and grip of reality. These are the stages of gaslighting, even though you may find they are not absolutely clear or they overlap sometimes.

#1. Lying and blowing things out of proportion. The first stage of gaslighting usually causes a great deal of surprise to the gaslightee. The gaslighter may appear to suddenly change, becoming more offensive and basically setting the ground for what’s to come (which the victim can’t imagine at the time).

#2. Repetition is the mother of manipulation. This is where it becomes clearer that the gaslighter’s outburst was not a one-off thing. He/ She will now start repeating the offenses, trying to cause their victim to start doubting themselves and how they see things.

#3. Exhausting the gaslightee. In the third stage of gaslighting, the process is well underway. The idea now is to refuse any and every kind of accusation and continue to cause the person gaslighted to doubt their perception of reality so that they drift slowly to stage 4.

#4. Forming a co-dependent relationship. To be more precise,  forming a dependent relationship. By now, the victim will be feeling helpless and unable to function in the simplest of situations, since their whole world will have been turned upside down. Who will they turn to for help? Their closest person; their partner, of course.

#5. Offering (fake) help and giving (false) hope. This is the penultimate stage, where a very calculating manipulator will enhance the feeling of dependence and instill false hope that things will get better with his/her assistance, winning one final battle and the victim’s trust before he/she is in full control.

#6. Taking over.  In the final stage of gaslighting, the gaslighter has got the victim exactly where he/she wants them to be. This is where the manipulator can control, feed with lies and take advantage of the victim, in an incessant cycle of lies and feeding off his/her insecurities.

If you fear that you are the victim of gaslighting, recognizing these signs in your own relationship (romantic or otherwise, as gaslighting is not limited to romantic relationships), it’s a good idea to seek professional assistance and try to regain your ground by stepping away from the relationship with an emotional pirate.

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Tuesday, May 2, 2017

What’s On Her Mind When She’s On A First Date With You

Women are mysterious creatures, we can all agree. And reading people’s minds is not easy, especially when you’re on a first date with someone who you don’t really know much about. There are, however, some thoughts that cross (almost) all women’s mind when they are out on a first date.

This Is What’s She’s Thinking On Your First Date

Even though you’re probably thinking you are the one with all the weird thoughts on your first date with her, it is more than probable that she is making some very strange – and quite scary – thoughts of her own. Here is some insight, so you can at least guess why she is looking a little lost too.

“Am I dressed appropriately? Is this dress too much for this place?”  The ever-present dress-code conundrum. Guys have it a little easier when it comes to dressing up or down for a place, luckily.

“Is my lipstick in place? Hope I don’t look like a clown with lipstick all over my face.” Even if the clothes are fine, there is always the possibility of a make-up malfunction. Don’t assume she’s a narcissist for looking in her tiny hand mirror every now and then, she’s probably just checking it’s all in place.

“I hope the lettuce in this salad doesn’t get stuck in my teeth.” Who orders lettuce on a first date, anyway? A bad idea (and a really legit worry) for both of you.

“He smells nice and is well-groomed. That’s one box ticked.” Don’t think for one moment she won’t be pleasantly surprised when you turn up with a freshly trimmed beard and the fab smell of your perfume. These things are dating 101.

“Am I boring him too much?” Even if the conversation is flowing, there’s a great chance she is still worried about being interesting enough. To be fair, you wouldn’t exactly yawn or otherwise show your boredom out of politeness anyway, so she can’t know.

“Will he make a move? Do I want him to make a move? What should I do if he makes a move?” Even if she knows she wants you to make a move, she will probably worry about how far she should go, not wanting to appear too ‘easy’.

“Good thing I’m wearing my sexy underwear.” Whatever her inner reply to the previous self-posed question may be, she will at some point thank her lucky stars she’s got her lace underwear on, as it will give her the confidence and freedom to decide where she wants things to go.

Hope this gave you some useful insight into a female brain on a first date. Of course, it is not right to overgeneralize, but some of these thoughts have been reported so many times that it’s quite safe to say they will, at some point, cross your date’s mind too.

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