“If you have been living with a narcissist for a long time, you may feel that you have lost all ability to function as an intelligent human being. By the time I divorced, I no longer felt confident about my looks, my ability to use technology, my driving ability, or the reliability of my thoughts and emotions. It’s not an easy thing to come back from but you can do it.” ~ First Wives World
Narcissists are infamous for their gaslighting manipulation techniques. You know, the ones they actively use in order to manipulate you into giving them what they want.
What is gaslighting?
Gaslighting is a pervasive and highly effective tactic used by narcissists and other toxic people. It’s meant to manipulate you by psychological means into questioning your own sanity. Learn more about gaslighting here.
How does gaslighting affect you?
Gaslighting techniques can be psychologically devastating for anyone who is involved with a malignant narcissist. Quite often, narcissists have such an emotional hold over the people in their lives that they literally invade their every thought.
If someone in your life makes you feel completely worthless, or constantly questions your sanity (especially when no one else in your life sees you this way), you might be dealing with a narcissist who is actively using gaslighting against you.
How do you shut down a narcissist who is gaslighting you?
There are only a few ways to stop gaslighting. The first and most drastic is to simply cease all contact with the narcissist. This is definitely the most effective way to end the cycle of emotional manipulation that can come with a relationship with a narcissist.
But in some cases, “no contact” isn’t possible. So what can you do then?
Simple: limit contact – at least as much as you can.
It’s not always going to be possible to avoid a narcissist, so it’s better to only spend as much time as necessary with him or her. The same goes for conversation when you do spend time together. Try to avoid it when you can, and if you must engage, don’t get beyond small talk.
Stand Up and Refuse to Cower
This sounds kind of silly, but if you’ve been in a relationship with a narcissist, you know what I’m talking about.
When gaslighting happens, a narcissist wants to feel in control, so they will do their best to make you feel crazy. But if you do not allow them to intimidate or upset you, then you take back your power and become the rightful mistress (or master) of your own destiny.
How do you do this? You simply REFUSE TO REACT in any negative way, other than to quietly stand up and remove yourself if necessary. Refuse to be confrontational. And watch the narcissist squirm.
By not paying attention or giving him the satisfaction of a reaction, you cause the narcissist to feel irrelevant. That deprives them of narcissistic supply. The narcissist will feel upset and off-kilter – and they might even decide to go back into “charming” mode (idealization or love-bombing) in order to get back his narcissistic supply (aka your attention). Either way, it stops the gaslighting – at least temporarily.
Shut Down a Narcissist’s Gaslighting with The Gray Rock Method
Want more ways to end gaslighting? Check out Take Back Your Life: 103 Highly-Effective Strategies to Snuff Out a Narcissist’s Gaslighting and Enjoy the Happy Life You Really Deserve.
How about you? Have you found a way to stop gaslighting? Share it when you hit me up on Facebook.
More Help to Shut Down the Narcissist’s Gaslighting
- Free Help for Victims of Narcissism and Gaslighting
- Toxic Relationships and Narcissism: Stages of Gaslighting
- Narcissistic Rage and Narcissistic Injury: What You Need to Know
- Divorcing a narcissist? Drop the tears, think straight, expert says
- Narcissistic Abuse Recovery: Find the Light at the End of the Tunnel and Be Brave
- Gaslighting and Toxic Narcissism: Top 10 Red Flags (Video)
- Shocking Truth: This is Why Even Very Smart People Can Be Gaslighted
- Narcissistic Abuse Awareness: 7 Red-Hot Flags of Emotional Manipulation
- Related: What You Need to Know About Narcissistic Rage
Get help with narcissistic abuse recovery, right now.
- The QueenBeeing SPANily, Official – We consider this to be the best narcissistic abuse recovery support group on the web. Offers several subgroups and features a vigilant, compassionate admin team full of trained coaches and survivors, supporting more than 12k members. SPAN is an acronym created by Angie Atkinson that stands for Support for People Affected by Narcissistic abuse in toxic relationships.
- Other Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Support Groups – We also have separate groups for each stage in your narcissistic abuse recovery, as well as some for those who have moved past recovery and are evolving into the next stage of their own life. Survivors have unique and individual needs, even when they’ve moved on – so we’re still here for you.
- One-on-One Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Coaching – If you prefer to get more personalized support in your recovery, you might like to schedule a session with one of our coaches to plan and execute your own narcissistic abuse recovery plan.
- Find a Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Therapist – If you’re looking for a therapist for narcissistic abuse recovery, either because you cannot afford coaching and want to use your health insurance or because you have additional issues you need to address that do not fall within the realm of coaching, you will want to find the right therapist for you – and as far as we’re concerned, that therapist must understand what you’ve been through. This page offers assistance to help you do exactly that.
- Where Are You in Recovery? You might not be sure exactly where you fit in and what level of recovery you’ve achieved. If that’s the case, you’ll want to check out this self-assessment to help you determine exactly where you fall in the stages of recovery from narcissistic abuse. Once you finish and submit the assessment, you will be given resources for your own situation, along with recommendations of which groups to join.
- Which Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Program is Right for You? If you aren’t sure which program you want to utilize to facilitate your recovery from narcissistic abuse, this self-assessment will help you decide.
Angela Atkinson is a certified trauma counselor and the author of more than 20 books on narcissism, narcissistic abuse recovery, and related topics. A recognized expert on narcissism and narcissistic personality disorder who has studied and written extensively on narcissistic personality disorder and narcissistic abuse in toxic relationships since 2006, she has a popular narcissistic abuse recovery YouTube channel. Atkinson was inspired to begin her work as a result of having survived toxic relationships of her own.
Atkinson offers trauma-informed narcissistic abuse recovery coaching and has certifications in trauma counseling, life coaching, level 2 therapeutic model, CBT coaching, integrative wellness coaching, and NLP. She is a certified trauma support coach and certified family trauma professional. She also has a professional PTSD counseling certification. Her mission is to help those who have experienced the emotional and mental devastation that comes with narcissistic abuse in these incredibly toxic relationships to (re)discover their true selves, stop the gaslighting and manipulation, and move forward into their genuine desires – into a life that is exactly what they choose for themselves.
Along with her solution-focused life coaching experience, Atkinson’s previous career in journalism and research helps her to offer both accurate and understandable information for survivors of abuse in a simple-to-understand way that helps to increase awareness in the narcissistic abuse recovery community. Atkinson founded QueenBeeing.com Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Support, the SPANily Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Support Groups and the Life Makeover Academy.
She offers individual and group coaching for victims and survivors of narcissistic abuse here at QueenBeeing.com and at NarcissisticAbuseRecovery.Online.