Sunday, December 22, 2019

Gaslighting 101

"This video answers the question: What is gaslighting and what is the origin of the term? Gaslighting is a term that refers to an individual trying to convince another individual that they've lost touch with reality or has mental health symptoms. Usually, its conceptualized as a husband gaslighting a wife, but it doesn't have to be. It can be romantic partners and friends as well. It's a type of manipulation and it's usually thought of as cognitive, emotional, or psychological. The origin of the term actually is quite curious. There are a lot of different videos out there on YouTube and a lot of different articles have been written about the origin, but there's a lot of mistakes that have been made in regard to where this term came from. Several of the origin stories for this term are based on a 1944 movie titled Gaslight and some are based on a 1938 play with the same name, but the way that gaslighting is described doesn't really line up too well with the play or the movie.

"Gaslighting is a deliberate manipulation usually between two people and usually in a fairly close relationship. Its conceptualized as long-term, gradual, and it can have the individual who's the victim of gaslighting having trouble determining what's true from what's false, questioning reality, questioning morality (right from wrong), and questioning sanity. This is done through lying dismissing one's perception or belief as invalid, isolation, and preventing access to information that we contradict what the gaslighter wants the individual to believe.
"The goal of the manipulation strategy is to shake confidence, lower self-esteem, and make an individual dependent on another individual.
"There is a relationship between gaslighting and narcissism. Almost all the time when we see the term gaslighting, we see some reference to narcissism, pathological narcissism, grandiose or vulnerable narcissism, or narcissistic personality disorder. Manipulation is a key component of narcissism and specifically exploiting individuals interpersonally, but you could also make an argument it has a fairly close relationship to psychopathy. Psychopathy also has a manipulation component, although often times it's considered less personal than what we would see with narcissism. It's important to note here that anybody can engage in the activity of gaslighting. Somebody doesn't have to be psychopathic, sociopathic, they don't have to have an antisocial personality disorder, or narcissistic personality disorder, or even be narcissistic.
"It's just this term gaslighting has become associated with narcissism, it's not that it has to be committed by an individual who is narcissistic. Another important point here about gaslighting is it's not something you really find in the scientific literature. The term gaslighting really isn't a scientific term, it's more of a colloquial term."

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Choose how you look at reality wisely. Yes, it is a binary choice.

Choose how you look at reality wisely. Yes, it is a binary choice.
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