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Trauma and Gaslighting

Gaslighting Quotes That Capture This Emotional Manipulation

  1. “Gaslighting is mind control to make victims doubt their reality.” — Tracy Malone.
  2. “Gaslighting is a subtle form of emotional manipulation that often results in the recipient doubting their own perception of reality and their sanity. In addition, gaslighting is a method of manipulation by toxic people to gain power over you. The worst part about gaslighting is that it undermines your self-worth to the point where you’re second-guessing everything.” — Dana Arcuri.
  3. “It frightens me because I feel vulnerable to attacks, an easy target for gaslighting. Phrases like ‘No, I didn’t say that!’, ‘You don’t remember,’ and ‘You must have forgotten,’ start rattling my brain and making me jittery.” — Ankita Sahani

There are many times of childhood trauma, where family members state it happened a long time ago, and it’s time to get over it. The same people who say that engage in gaslighting the survivor of childhood trauma.

What is meant by gaslighting?

Gaslighting refers to the act of undermining another person’s reality by denying facts, the surrounding environment, or their feelings and memories. Ultimately, the target of gaslighting may doubt their sanity.

The trauma of childhood abuse can have long-lasting repercussions that affect your understanding of yourself and the world around you. For many, the effects of abuse show up in dysfunctional interpersonal relationships resulting from attachment disruptions at pivotal points of childhood development. By examining the impact of childhood abuse on interpersonal relationships and the role of therapy in healing, people can better understand their experiences and the possibilities for recovery.

One result of childhood trauma can be dissociative disorders:

Dissociative disorders involve the inability to distinguish between thoughts, memories, surroundings, actions, and identity. People with dissociative disorders escape reality in involuntary and unhealthy ways and cause problems with functioning in everyday life. In one case, a patient dissociated when she had to move from her apartment after many years. Any stress can set off this disorder. 

The Impact of Childhood Abuse on Interpersonal Relationships

In the absence of secure attachments, survivors of childhood abuse often develop dysfunctional attachment styles that disrupt your ability to interact with others in healthy ways. Emotional abuse, neglect, and sexual abuse are more strongly associated with interpersonal distress in adulthood than physical abuse. However, it is essential to remember that any abuse survivor can experience profound interpersonal difficulties, including:

People who experience childhood abuse are vulnerable to developing mental health disorders that compromise emotional and behavioral stability, including depression, anxiety, PTSD, and borderline personality disorder. These illnesses present additional challenges to engaging in healthy interpersonal relationships, leading to re-traumatization that creates further emotional damage.

Contact Dr. Schwartz at

dransphd@aol.com

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