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6. Gaslighting

Psychological manipulation…

Gas lighting is another defining characteristic of the narcissists.

It is psychological abuse.

A tactic they all use to deny your reality and keep you in a state of confusion so they can continue to manipulate and control you.

It also defines the meaning of when their actions do not match their words.

And yet they refuse to take accountability and will rather manipulate you into thinking that it’s all in your head and you’ve got it all wrong.

Gaslighting techniques they may use…

Gaslighting can come in the form of withholding information, contradicting information, denying facts and diverting conversations.

It can also come in the form of minimizing your feelings, minimizing the narcissist’s own actions, or it may include a third party making excuses for the narcissist.

It is the narcissists favorite way of shifting blame so they can continue to exploit and abuse by planting self-doubt in the minds of the victims.

By continuously saying one thing and doing another then denying the fact over and over can eventually confuse and break down someone’s confidence over time.

And completely depletes an individual’s intuition.

This leaves them in a mental space of confusion and self-doubt where they are more susceptible and open to being manipulated.

Narcissists also try to isolate their victims from others.

Which makes it easier for the gaslighting lies to be perceived as reality.

If you find yourself feeling like a detective in your relationships, it is a sign that you may be being gaslighted.

Image from the 1940’s thriller ‘Gaslight’

Behind the term ‘gaslighting’…

The term ‘gaslighting’ comes from a 1938 play ‘Gas Light’ by dramatist Patrick Hamilton and it’s 1940’s psychological thriller movie adaptations ‘Gaslight’.

It’s about a newlywedded couple that move into a house.

And every time the gaslights dim, the husband tells his new bride that she is seeing things and convinces her that she’s going crazy.

He also does many other things to make her think she’s going insane just to hide and protect his secret.

I watched this movie as study material on gaslighting.

It really intrigued me that narcissists have been around since forever, using their charm and lies to manipulate, exploit and destroy.

I truly see them as evil. Targeting, ruining and exploiting the good in others for their own greed and selfish agendas.

There is an interesting article on case studies relating to gas lighting called ‘The Sociology of Gaslighting which I found to also be good study material.

7. Jealousy

Envy in relationships…

Jealousy in a love relationship with your narcissist can make you feel rather like a possession than an equal partner.

They may constantly question you on things that you may have or have not been doing.

Narcissistic partners will also induce jealousy into their relationships on purpose.

By flirting with others in front of their partners as a form of control, punishment or simply to boost their ego.

Relationships with narcissistic parents, friends, siblings and acquaintances can make you feel that everything in life is a competition.

When in your mind, nothing is a competition.

You are truly proud of them and their achievements and expect them to be happy about your successes also.

But sadly, their deep insecurities will cause the narcissist to always attempt tearing down your success or down play your achievements.

Just so they can feel superior to you and your efforts.

If you are in a love relationship with a narcissist, they may idealize you and admire your successes at the beginning of the relationship.

And show no signs of envy.

Image by Vera Arsic

But soon you will appear imperfect to them, because it is impossible to live up to their unrealistically high expectations.

At this point, they will begin to devalue you.

And over time your achievements and successes will also become a threat to their insecurities.

Their emotions are damaging…

The overt or grandiose narcissist may not come across as jealous as the covert or vulnerable narcissist.

Their arrogance tend to cover it well.

And the covert narcissist may have more destructive tendencies when experiencing emotions such as envy.

But jealousy in all narcissists can come out appearing quite ugly and malicious.

Resulting in tantrums, aggression, threats, abuse, insults, ignorance or negative gossip.

These outward behaviors are so destructive as to create problematic issues in your relationships, workplace or reputation.

Why they get jealous…

Narcissists will get jealous over many different things.

They will be envious if others have what they need or want.

Whether it is attention, recognition, material gain, a status or image, financial gains or a relationship.

But they will also get jealous if someone has the quality or efficiencies that the narcissist believes they possess in their grandiose fantasies but in reality, they obviously lack.

This fact of reality offends their ego and false self and therefore creates this toxic form of jealousy.

They can also feel envy for other reasons related to suspicion, resentment or fears of humiliation.

Narcissists can simply get jealous over the fact that an individual they wish to possess has the freedom to make their own choices.

They can have so much in their life and yet be jealous of the little you possess in your life.

Yes, it appears that they can get jealous over anything and everything, envy consumes their entire life.

In denial about their feelings…

Even though narcissists can appear inferior to others due to their super sensitive, highly insecure and extremely jealous behaviors,

in an obscured way they also truly believe that others are jealous of them and their perceived superiority.

And although it is very apparent to us all when a narcissist gets jealous, most will never admit that they are actually envious of others.

Because admitting it would be to admit feelings of rage, shame, resentment and inadequacy.

And a narcissist’s ego will not allow themselves to admit that they are vulnerable.

Or that they are not as perfect and superior as they believe themselves to be.

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Awareness is power.