Narcissist Gaslighting: What it is, How to Recognize it & What to do About it

narcissist gaslighting

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Do you feel like you’re constantly walking on eggshells around someone?

Do you find yourself constantly second guessing yourself and your decisions?

You might be a victim of narcissist gaslighting. This is a type of manipulation that is often used by people with Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD). It can make you feel like you’re going crazy and leave you feeling isolated and alone.

In this blog post, we will discuss what narcissist gaslighting is, how to recognize it, and what to do about it.

What is Narcissistic Personality Disorder?

Not everyone who has NPD gaslights those around them, just like not everyone who gaslights has NPD. NPD is a personality disorder that is characterized by an inflated sense of self-importance, a need for admiration, and a lack of empathy for others. People with NPD often have difficulty handling criticism or rejection. They may also take advantage of others to get what they want by manipulation or coercion.

What is Gaslighting?

Gaslighting is a type of emotional abuse that can be used to control, manipulate, and isolate someone. It is characterized by constant invalidation, denial, and criticism. Gaslighting can make a person question their memories, thoughts, and perceptions.

Signs of Narcissist Gaslighting

There are some common signs that you might be getting gaslighted by someone with NPD. They may try to make you feel like you’re overreacting or being too sensitive by saying things like, “You’re being paranoid,” or “You’re imagining things.” They might also try to control what you do and who you see by trying to isolate you from your friends and family. And they might try to make all the decisions in the relationship. If you’re being gaslighted, you might start to doubt yourself and your perceptions. You might feel like you’re going crazy.

They may also tell you that you’re imagining things or remembering things wrong. Gaslighting can also involve making someone doubt their own judgment. The narcissist may try to convince you that other people are better than you or that you’re not good enough. They may also try to make you feel like you’re powerless or that they are the only ones who understand you.

Common Traits of Narcissist Gaslighting

There are some common traits of gaslighters. They may be very charming and charismatic and may also be very manipulative and controlling. Narcissists can be charming to hook you in, but then their true colors come out by being very critical and judgmental. Narcissists are also often experts at playing the victim. If you confront them about their behavior, they may try to make you feel guilty or like you’re the one who is in the wrong. Gaslighters often have a history of lying or deception. They may also have difficulty taking responsibility for their own actions and will almost always find a way to blame you or someone else.

Examples of Relationships

You might encounter being gaslighted by someone with NPD in different relationships. It can happen in work relationships, friendships, family, or even romantic relationships. In work relationships, the narcissist may try to make you feel like you’re not good enough for the job. They may also try to take credit for your work or ideas. In friendships, the narcissist may try to make you feel like you’re not really their friend. They may also try to control who you spend your time with or what you do. In romantic relationships, the narcissist may try to make you feel like you’re not really in love with them. They may also try to control your relationship by making all the decisions or by isolating you from your friends and family.

Example of narcissist gaslighting in the workplace:

Your boss might tell you that you’re not meeting their expectations, even though you know that you are. They might say that you’re not working hard enough or that you’re not being productive. They might try to make you feel like you’re not good enough for the job. An example of how this would play out in conversation is if your boss said to you, “I’m not sure if you’re cut out for this job. Maybe we should consider finding someone else.” If your boss is gaslighting you, you might start to doubt yourself and your abilities. You might feel like you’re not good enough for the job or that you’re not working hard enough.

Example of narcissist gaslighting in a friendship:

Your friend might start to isolate you from your other friends. They might say that they’re the only one who really understands you or try to control what you do and who you spend your time with. An example of how this would play out in a conversation is if you express an opinion that differs from your friend’s, and they immediately shut down the conversation or make you feel like you’re wrong.

Example of narcissist gaslighting in a romantic relationship:

Your partner might tell you that you’re not really in love with them. They might say that you don’t really care about them or that you’re just using them causing you to feel insecure in your relationship. They might try to make you feel like the relationship is not really worth your time and effort. An example of how this would play out in conversation is if they say something like, “I don’t think you really love me,” and when you respond with, “Of course I do; I wouldn’t be in this relationship if I didn’t,” they gaslight you by saying, “Well, then why don’t you ever show it?”

Example of narcissist gaslighting from a family member:

Your narcissist family member might try to convince you that you’re not really part of the family. They might say that you’re not really related to them, or that you don’t really care about them. They might try to make you feel like you’re not really a part of the family. An example of how this would play out in conversation is if they say, “You’re not really my son/daughter” or “I don’t really consider you part of the family.”

Reasons Why a Narcissist Might Gaslight Someone

There are some common reasons why a narcissist gaslights. They may want to control you or make you dependent on them. They may also do it to boost their ego or to make themselves feel better. Narcissists may gaslight someone because they are insecure or have low self-esteem. Narcissists may also gaslight as a way to manipulate or hurt someone and may also do it to gain power or control over someone. And finally, narcissists may gaslight someone because they want to keep them from leaving the relationship.

If you think a narcissist is gaslighting you, it’s important to get help. Gaslighting can be very damaging to your mental health. Talk to a trusted friend or family member about what’s going on. You can also talk to a therapist to help you deal with the effects of gaslighting. If you’re in a relationship with a narcissist, it’s essential to get out. Narcissists are very manipulative and controlling. If you’re being gaslighted at work, talk to your boss or HR about what’s happening. Gaslighting is a form of emotional abuse, and it’s not okay.

If you are struggling to deal with narcissistic gaslighting in any area of your life, schedule an appointment with Makin Wellness today so we can partner with you to get you the help you need.

Check out this video, 3 Ways to Know if Someone is Gaslighting You, on our YouTube channel!

Sara Makin MSEd, LPC, NCC

Sara Makin MSEd, LPC, NCC

All articles are written in conjunction with the Makin Wellness Research Team.

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