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#16678 - 12/03/15 03:50 AM Gaslighting - Book Excerpt
Dianne E. Offline

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I have received a couple of emails from people not understanding why I would interview psychopaths instead of victims for my book. I took a wait and see while doing the interviews. I wanted to see if I learned anything that would help people who are victims or know victims to read how they think to better escape from them. I thought I knew a lot but one never knows everything, or we have shut off our mind to new ideas. What I learned really helped me to see how people can become victims and why they stay as victims.

I would like to share a couple of excerpts from my book about Gaslighting. Over the years, the actual acts are rarely mentioned. Things like I felt like I was the crazy one in the room were more common. It was interesting because when I asked the people, I interviewed about Gaslighting; they didn't know the term but when the looked it up their response was very revealing. They responded that it was the foremost thing they used with their victims. Of course best thing to a victim translates to a very horrible thing indeed..

CHAPTER FOUR
Gaslighting
Control through Manipulation


“Gaslighting is a form of mental abuse in which information is twisted/spun, selectively omitted to favor the abuser, or false information is presented with the intent of making victims doubt their own memory, perception and sanity”
― Wikipedia

Dianne
The term “gaslighting” explains what you do as far as telling them their mind is like a sieve and then proceeding to trick them over things.
Or planting information in their heads.

Bill
You hit the hypothetical nail on the head with your comment about planting information. This is my golden goose. As for gaslighting, I honestly have never heard the term. I had to look it up. After reading the definition, I would say it is a tool I use daily. It is amazing to me how mold-able memory really is.

If you trust me enough, and I'm convincing enough, you will remember an event as I told you it happened. You will defend my version as the absolute truth.

Even better, you will be outraged at the injustice that even put me under and rise to my defense. This coupled with ideas planted around, and I am now in the position to become the hero.

I can save the agency from the looming disaster that no one saw coming. Better yet, I can save the agency from the looming disaster that the guy in the office I want is causing.

Fred
Gaslight is a term I have only just learned, but I like it very much. The term, that is. It suits what it is perfectly. Not just intent, but spectacle.

Make them flicker, make them dim, make them blaze brighter than ever before, push the limits of brightness and darkness without ever overstepping and turning them off or burning them out.

Don’t you want to burn brightly? I do. We’re more alive at the edge. Hah. Some of us are only alive at the edge. Or over it. Falling, forever. I think it might tie-in with the word salad concept. I don't really go in for that myself, because why talk nonsense when you can get something more constructive done with sense?

Anyway, it is yet more misdirection, stalling for thinking time, muddying the waters. But word salad is basically gaslighting a conversation by wobbling the other person's brain around with so many mad jumps, non sequiturs and juxtapositions that they can only assume, they're being stupid.

Frankly, most people are so confused by a coherent, true account delivered at speed and with details that talking nonsense seems like a waste of time.

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#16779 - 08/06/16 03:16 PM Re: Gaslighting - Book Excerpt [Re: Dianne E.]
SilverRose Offline
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Registered: 07/02/16
Posts: 3
Parts of the post kinda jumped out at me- specifically, where the individual called Bill said this:
If you trust me enough, and I'm convincing enough, you will remember an event as I told you it happened. You will defend my version as the absolute truth.

Even better, you will be outraged at the injustice that even put me under and rise to my defense. This coupled with ideas planted around, and I am now in the position to become the hero.


Re: the first part of his comments, I'm hoping someone here might be able to shed a light on something I've been unable to understand- how, in the universe, can someone pull off something like that when they're a total stranger to the person they're manipulating?

To explain as briefly as possible: this nightmare has been going on more than 11 years, with no resolution in sight. If anything, it's become worse. And I'm sure the Psychopath is 'dancing with delight' over however he managed to pull it off.

When I informed this individual whom I had just met that I was not interested in him, he in turn informed me that we were 'in an exclusive relationship.' Describing himself as a 'fundamentalist Christian,' he said 'the Bible says' women cannot be the heads of their households, any guy can simply walk in and take over, and women have no right to object or stop it. While I initially believed I could simply brush him off and that would be the end of it, much later he informed me he'd been stalking me for nearly a year. I was basically given the options of either consenting to marry someone I wanted nothing to do with, or he'd circle around me and go after my family anyway. And the latter was what happened.

As I was new to this area, perhaps it wasn't too difficult for him to (word he often used) 'convince' locals of everything he wanted them to believe; but my ongoing confusion is how he managed to 'convince' my own daughter. At the time she was 16 yrs old- over-the-top intelligent, stable, no mental health problems and no behavioral problems, had many school friends, extracurricular activities, was developing plans and goals for the future, plus factors I feel are very important: she and I had always had a good, solid relationship with very little disagreements; and, with the exception of a couple months when we had apartment problems and I had to let her stay with some friends, she lived with me every day of her life for sixteen years.

I know it's not good that all I've had to go on was what Psychopath told me, but when she got a part-time job at a local fast-food place, Psychopath started coming to the apartment when she was at work, telling me he was talking to her behind my back, telling her I was untrustworthy, messed up, etc. I told him to leave her alone, but this occurred perhaps 2-3 times- after which every single thing about her changed. Her attitude, personality, behavior all changed, and she suddenly thought of me as 'the enemy.' I couldn't get rid of him, no one would listen, but it's these radical changes that still have me mindboggled. What could he have said or done to cause these changes- to get her to no longer trust the parent she'd known and lived with all her life?
Some of the things I was told he 'convinced' her (and other people) of: that I was a 'dry-drunk alcoholic in-denial,' that I was horribly 'abusive,' and that I had 'mental illnesses.' As none of these things were true, how could he have caused her to believe it all? And as soon as he came into the picture, she and I went from a good relationship to none at all. Over the years she and I saw each other, but it was clear I was no longer a part of her life. As it stands, I haven't even seen her in more than two years- won't even come over to pick up her birthday presents, Christmas presents, etc. My son (her older brother) who lives in a different state told me she cut off communications with him around two years ago also.

Anyway, the Psychopath is around my age. The scam he presented to locals was that we were 'in a relationship,' but that I was 'so messed up from the Past' that I 'couldn't make a full commitment to him,' and, as such, that he had taken over my parental role to my daughter.
To clarify: I've never had any mental health problems, never had alcohol or drug problems, and never abused my kids in any way. So how could he get her to believe all of this nonsense- and to the extreme of cutting me out of her life?

I considered the possibility that perhaps he was approaching her behind my back BEFORE I ever met him, but it doesn't seem likely- before she got the summer job she was either in school, at home, or going around to the mall and so forth with her school friends.

Not sure if this would be relevant, but in the past I had experiences where other complete strangers 'misrepresented' themselves and situations- presenting themselves as long-time friends who'd been in my life for a long time, while the fact was I'd never met them before. In one instance (different location, years earlier) she went off with a couple without checking with me, I had no idea where she was, and when I eventually did find her she exclaimed 'I thought they were your friends!' I've noticed individuals who are up to no good do tend to misrepresent themselves.

Being brief is not my strong point, especially on such a confusing, frustrating topic. But would you possibly have input on how he could have pulled this off- and more important, is there anything I can do?

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#16785 - 08/07/16 07:52 PM Re: Gaslighting - Book Excerpt [Re: SilverRose]
Dianne E. Offline

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Registered: 11/15/02
Posts: 2788
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Hi SilverRose, thanks for your comments, in reference to your question:

Quote:
Re: the first part of his comments, I'm hoping someone here might be able to shed a light on something I've been unable to understand- how, in the universe, can someone pull off something like that when they're a total stranger to the person they're manipulating?


That is one of the main questions that had been rattling around in my mind all these years. I was actually quite surprised how self reflective they are and also how they have a very planned system for how they do it. They are masters of getting information, mirroring information and basically controlling all things in their universe. Have you had a chance to read my book? My goal is that in order to not be a victim and avoid them in the future is to get inside how they think and operate. I interviewed three who were not connected in any way because I felt that if I had a balance I would be able to confirm the truth vs. their projected reality.

They understand the need to play the victim to attract victims and are excellent at that part. In one sense, however, they feel like they really are the victims because we come with instructions and have empathy and they have to learn step by step which buttons work as they become better at their control over victims. They are in their mind victims while they victimize others. It is a very well thought out plan they have to accomplish their goals in the way they approach, target and represent things.

Di

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#16808 - 09/16/16 12:11 PM Re: Gaslighting - Book Excerpt [Re: Dianne E.]
SilverRose Offline
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Registered: 07/02/16
Posts: 3
I haven't read your book yet, but plan to buy it as soon as I can- I found it on Amazon.

Yes, if you're familiar with Sandra Brown, that's what she said in one of her newsletters- Psychopath's have a strange ability to get away with everything. And I have noticed this in a number of different situations.

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