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    • #15606

      ……i.e something horrible & upsetting happens, they twist events, blame you, deny, deceive or go silent, everything bar dealing with the actual horrible thing that happened. It is normally some wrong doing that they have done and which has really upset you.

    • #15607


      I think its when they ignore u for weeks or months( they all have there own style), mine started off every 2-3 weeks then went on every 2-3 months, then out of bloom they can leave v mail being very abusive (telling u how much they hate u and balme u for ceretain thiungs) or start saying im sorry and crying, asking for a second chance but eventually leads to mask slipping, mine has actually changed his tatic again, i am on three month stage when he ddecides to contact me, his latest is sending me a text saying he misses me and v mail where he is silent for 7 min but in between 7 min he will say u can have everything but very bad line, i have ignored but is messing with my head big time, i have had mixture of tears, nightmares and to make it worser same weekend i received messsage which was weekend just gone i banged in ex uncle and aunty who made very negative comments , totallymessed with my head yet i came accross as i was in control and ditn want to discuss anything, reality is even by not talking about ex to them my head is messed up again

    • #15610

      The feeling that you need to record every conversation because when they are referred back they are nothing like you remembered.

      Example. They promised that they something would happen (normally nice something) if you did something else first. Then when you ask about that something, they never agreed to any such thing and you must have imagined it.
      They will sound so convincing that you will start doubting yourself.

      They can become so convincing that they can actually convince others who were there that the conversation was the way they said it rather than the actual truth.
      If challenged and they have nowhere left to go they might “take the wind out of the sails” and then apologize for their “mistake” which then will leave anyone who carries on to challenge their behaviour looking like they are the a*s or the aggressor.

      The feeling that you are becoming forgetful because you were sure you left something in one place and it isn’t there but somewhere else. Yes they moved it, but again if they are there to ask they will have no idea what you are talking about.
      Trust yourself you do know when you have forgotten something to when something is moved. But they will get you to start doubting that.

      Conversations with other people and even to you alone that seem sort of innocent but are sowing the seeds about your behavior for a later date.
      Little phrases like “oh she has a head like a sieve”
      “She’s a little stressed at the moment so please excuse her behavior”
      “Oh I am looking after the kids because at the moment she can’t cope with them”
      In front of others “I don’t know whey you are upset we didn’t agree to anything, I’ll tell you what (offers a solution to look as though they are looking after you and you have just lost the plot)”
      “Your getting upset over nothing, calm down”

    • #15615

      Hi my ex first tried reeling me in but as I didn’t respond it’s been a week’s silent treatment I don’t know if he’s accepted it x

    • #15632

      Hi there. I can give you a brutal example. My monster was driving and I saw a cat I liked. He turned the steering wheel drove at it and ran it over. I was hysterical, screaming you killed it. Quick as a flash, he screams back…. It was an accident. Now I know what happened but the quick angry way he denied it caused confusion and what do I do? It’s easier to believe his version than accept the truth of what he did or deal with the wrath that comes when you cross them x

    • #15634

      Hi Confused 123,

      Is it possible for you to block him from phoning, texting & mailing you? I did that, after I did that I found that I wasn’t sitting waiting anymore, basically waiting for the silent treatment and being ignored when I would contact him, but I felt it gave me power back. Admittedly I am going through times when I’m checking the spam folder as deleted emails go into this, but it definatly made me feel more powerful. Also, Serentiy recently really helped me out by explaining how to word an email to some relatives of his who had contacted me, word it so that it protected me, I would have truly put my foot in it & left myself open had I sent the email I wanted to, to his relatives, but what I sent in the end was so much better i’m sure Serenity will advise you on appropriate wording if you ask her. X

    • #15637

      Something that happened to me… During an argument (usually over his drug use, stealing and lying) he got close enough to push me and then would repeat ‘you fell over, you fell over’ and then ‘you’re so clumsy’ even though he blatantly pushed me. At first I’d stand my ground and say you just pushed me over! Eventually I started to question if I had just fallen over.

      I know they like to claim you’re crazy etc. Sadly I do suffer from mental health problems, which he knew from the offset, so could always use this against me. I started to believe his lies about me. He would also hide my things around the house and put them in peculiar places, I found my glasses in the microwave. At the time I thought I was truly crazy, doing things I couldn’t remember, but alas this wasn’t the case.

      I think this is a form of gaslighting? xx

    • #15638

      I have a whole compendium of examples. Both abusers used to do things and say things in an effort to make me think that I had lost my mind. Fortunately, our little chaotic and insane home was a complete contrast to my normal workplace and sports club, where nothing ever went missing, nothing was ever broken and no one suspected that I was going mad and/ or rearranging my belongings in a disturbed manner.

      At ‘home’ I had…

      -My underwear and sock draw re-arranged one day, where half of the items were turned 180 degrees and the other half remained normal:

      -Mysterious white fluid appear on watch cases, books and storage boxes from time to time;

      -Lip marks over recently-washed crokery;

      -My toothbrushes variously dipped in bleach, faeces and mucus of some kind;

      -My height taken down by two inches on the family height chart in my ‘own’ handwriting (someone clearly had heightist issues in that place);

      -Shoetrees disembled and placed back in their box with the parts placed in parallel.

      Apparently, I had…

      -Threatened to castrate my husband if I became pregnant;

      -Hidden the financial gifts inventory from my husband, so that I could accuse him of stealing money;

      -Adopted a competitive and abusive manner in order to alienate my step-child;

      -Some kind of white male privilege that I needed to check, even though I am neither white nor male.

      So, in sum, in that house I was a tiny upper-class Caucasian male with the ability to get pregnant; a massive attitude problem; and a penchant for unusual toothpaste flavours, doing washing up with my tongue and throwing ectoplasm around… amongst other things. I was so interesting back then; now, I am just an ordinary woman.

      I hope the above will re-assure you ladies who are experiencing gaslighting just how utterly ridiculous your abusers are.

      Take care

      Lilycat xx

    • #15639

      Sorry, I meant ‘crockery’, not ‘crokery’. ;P

    • #15647

      The one that stands out most in my mind.

      I had a sentimental and expensive custom made item. It’s not something you use every day but take out for special occasions.

      My abusive husband had damaged/destroyed part of this item. And he put the evidence in the garbage. He hid the fact that he had did this for months and months even though we were going through marriage counselling.

      One day I went to check on the item reminiscing and wanting to use the item. I couldn’t find the missing piece…..I knew he had done something with it

      When I confronted him, he went silent. I became more furious, no one had access to this item but me and him. I told him that if he didn’t speak up and tell me what horrible thing he had done I would have to call the police.

      He told the police that he hadn’t seen it since the last time I had taken it out and the police woman said to me that maybe I wasn’t mentally well and had misplaced it. I wonder who put those words in her mouth.

      After that I told her that if they left us together alone, he wouldn’t be safe, I was that furious. That was the catalyst for the end.

      I was in such distress and such shock that I reverted to berrating and being verbally abusive to him every chance I got. Then he upped the ante by threatening and then attempting to kill me.

      They try to convince you that there is something wrong with your brain that doesn’t exist. They will say you are forgetful. You aren’t. They will say you imagined things. You haven’t they will move things around to trip you up and then say you are clumsy. You are not clumsy. They will ask you to retrieve an item, hide it and then when you are not looking place it back, and then show you it was there all along.

      Basically question whether you are going crazy or suffering from memory lost.

    • #15648

      Ooh yes. It escalated towards the end.

      – Trying to pick fights with me when kids out of earshot, then blaming me in front of them.

      – Telling me I knew he had hidden bank accounts all along ( ?!*?!).

      – Saying he had barely touched me, when he had pinched me or slapped me very hard.

      – Saying things to either child about the other, then feigning innocence when the children argued because of it.

      – saying I had been inhospitable to his mother, when in fact I loved his mum and loved her visiting- he was projecting his own lack of patience with her on to me.

      -Saying he had been out to walk the dog and bumped into a nice woman and chatted to her – then denied he was trying to unsettle me

      – Being unkind just before I had an important meeting, so I left the house unsettled- then denying he did anything and that I was just a n*****e.

      -denying he struck my son, telling my son and myself that my son was lying

      – denying ever changing bills into my name, saying I did it

      – Telling me I signed a firm to draw down money from the mortgage and that I knew what the form was ( I don’t recall signing ).

      -Telling the court I was imagining everything negative.

      – Exaggerating or twisting events to the court.

      It goes on.

      The consistent gas lighting lay in him constantly doing things passive-aggressively to annoy or upset me- then saying I was just imagining it or was over- emotional. Like butter wouldn’t melt.

    • #15650

      In my case I always the abuser. I was nagging, desperate for his attention. I was the one who complain why he only called me to ask is there anything I need for his dinner. I cook every night for him and I “might need him to get bread”. When He arrived he will say hi how are you? And I’m too disappointed he didn’t bother to called how I am and I ignore him. He act like nothing happen and Started to nag about it and he don’t care. He used to answer me “I don’t give a 2 f**k” after a years he replay that’s what you think and if I continue nagging he will say f**k you and this happen mostly twice a week our relationship become worse at the last few years. Nothing has change. All I wanted was his attention. The more I ask the more he ignore me.
      Everytime I went out he only call me if I passed “home time” bcoz he needed his dinner.
      No body ever love me, care about me no matter I do, no matter how hard I tried. What is wrong with me?

    • #15652

      By the way, if he “upset” to someone he will not talk to them, pick up their call no matter how many time they called. If he did it to me I will call him until he pick up no matter how many time I need (up to 100 times) that’s how desperate I am. I am pathetic, stupid women who deserve to be dumped and abused!!

      • #15705
        Main Moderator

        Hi Millionpieces,

        I just wanted to show you some support. You are none of the negative things you think you are! You are simply feeling the effects of an abusive relationship which has trampled on your confidence. Please do phone the helpline whenever you get a safe time as they can help you to find some support which in turn will build up your confidence.

        We are all here for you.

        Best wishes,


    • #15666

      Gaslighting was constant in my relationship. It made me feel completely insane. Everytime it would happen I would at first feel an overwhelming feeling of “is this for real”!!! Then the doubt would set in, I would start to question myself and then a total feeling of helplessness as it didnt matter what I knew because the truth no longer mattered as we lived by his rules.

      The common gas-lighting experiences happened when recounting arguments. He would retell the story missing out anything he had said or done that was antagonistic. So the story was always that I was a crazy woman that just went nuts for no reason

      So I started to tape any phonecalls we had. Fro my own sanity to see if my version of conversations was actually real or if I was mental. I told him I had taped him once and asked him to listen to the call and the way he spoke to me. He refused. That was his common response to any factual evidence that he might be wrong….he would refuse to look at it.

      One time during his usual “putdown” rants he accused me of doing nothing for him. That girlfriends cook for their boyfriends and I didnt. This frustrated me because I had a fulltime job which meant that I was home by 8pm most days while he would get home by 6.30 latest. Yet I would cook for him as soon as I got in. it would be the first thing I did…before doing anything for myself. I obviously told him he must be joking, but he was deadly serious. From that day I created a calendar I kept on the wall and each day I wrote down what I had cooked for him. 2 or 3 weeks later he again accused me of doing nothing for him. I ripped the cooking calendar off the wall and handed it to him to prove how I had provided for him. He just laughed and said, you have only started to cook for me the last few weeks to prove a point, before that I got nothing!

      Another time he accused me of stealing from our joint account which we equally contributed too. So I printed out all the bank statements and spent hours colour co-ordinating them to prove I hadnt. He refused to look at them, he just picked them up and ripped them up in front of me saying he refused to spend time dwelling on anymore of my lies!

      Another time he told me that my dad had sexually abused me and thats why I was so f****d up in the head and any money I had was because I had been blackmailing my father over it. When he said that to me my skin crawled. I mustered up all I had in me and said I was glad he had said that because my family would know that wasnt true. To which he replied…well thats what you told me…so was that just another one of your lies, just like the ones you tell about me abusing you!! He was so quick to respond I felt totally overwhelmed with disbelief and helplessness. He had an answer for everything.

      Just like when he went too far physically. As soon as I left the house he would fear I would tell someone or the police. So he would take pictures of any scratches he had from me trying to defend myself and send them to me telling me how he had suffered abuse at my hands! He turned everything around and caused so much fear in me to the point that when he attacked me I stopped defending myself because I didnt want to give him anything he could turn on me!

      When I remember all this stuff, it makes me so sad. It makes me feel like such a fool. He was so evil, and yet I did everything for him and loved him. I miss him very much, the good side of him anyway and so although it hurts its the bad times I remember to find the strength to stay away.

    • #15692

      Hi Missiepie
      That’s the ugly truth we love them. And fight for nothing. Give everything above but get nothing in return.. Just hurt and scars which real. I’m damaged once I got out.

      • #15709

        I can so relate to giving them written evidence of something that is true and then either refuse to read it or look at it or ripping it up.
        Mine will say why do you have to defend yourself and verify things !
        If he is wrong he will not Accept the truth.
        Sometimes I have written him accounts of the truth of what he has done and he will just rip it straight up in front of me.
        They are in total denial and cannot stand being shown evidence of the truth, like you I have spent ages sorting things out to prove the truth but he disregards them

    • #15706

      yes I still love and miss my ex, i find the separation so lonely and empty. My head tells me its right however and I am maintaining no contact, though feel horrible emptiness & sadness inside. I noticed during our relationship that as the time went on i became extremely insecure, i was a nervous wreck, i could not pinpoint why and just put it down to me always being a bit jealous. But this insecurity was in the extreme, my nerves were in tatters and I was hyper vigilant. I was also becoming more and more confused, i felt my self confidence reduce and as it went on my internal feelings of self worth were affected. But because maybe I had a few minor issues when we met (failed marriage etc) I put it all down to me. (maybe the blame was happening and I hadn’t picked up on it). Coincidentally, at the same time he was giving me the silent treatment regularly (ignoring my texts & emails to punish me), being secretive, withholding information, casually dropping statements in which I now think were designed to unsettle me. I can so much identify with the Chapters Goggles of Reflection & Circular Conversation Saw in The Devils Toolkit book. Goggles of Reflection where basically he was just a pure chameleon who adopted the personality of whichever woman he was with, to make her believe she had met her soul mate. He would be wearing these goggles so when I looked at him, basically I was just looking into the goggles at myself. He had me fooled for a short time but after a while it becomes easy to spot. He said something so bizarre & unbelievable one day he blew his cover. ie. told me he had been meditating, i like meditating. He is SO NOT the type of person to do that i was laughing inside. Circular Conversation Saw is where I would have an issue of real concern that I wanted to speak to him about, it was really important to me. I would come away from each conversation having talked about something completely different and not talked about the original thing at all. He had turned it around.

      • #15768
        Peaceful Pig

        Healthy archive, that is so interesting and spot on about that book. I’ve just realised my husband told me he did this (goggles of reflection) with people! That gave me a shiver x

    • #15712

      The issue with gaslighting is that we try and fight the irrational with rational and it doesn’t work. Thats why evidence providing is futile. My councilor told me that all my efforts with my ex was me not accepting that were was something fundamentally wrong with him. She put it a great way. She said, if his leg was broken you would recognise the issue and hand it over to a doctor, you wouldn’t try and treat it yourself. Each time I tried to rationalise with my ex I wasn’t accepting that he had a fundamental issue. I was trying to treat a broken leg with a band aid.

    • #15715

      Hi Lisa,
      Thank you for your comment. And thank you for all the ladies here in this forum. If I haven’t find this forum I don’t know what happen to me now. I have been treat in human. I not a good women, I don’t deserve to be his wife, I don’t deserve of children. I was disrespected even as human being, I was disgraced as women, I’m unworthy, yet I stayed and stayed and stayed.. And he didn’t even feel sorry for that. He act like innocent person. I was just fighting my own right as human being as women but yet I’m not more than mental women, desperate women. I have no dignity, how did I do that to my self?? Why did I do that to my self? When I found him cheating I ask him to leave but he said he couldn’t leave and compared me to a dog. If he have a dog for that length of time it’s going to be hard for him too. I’m no human I’m just his pet. Yet here I am still missing him, still care what would happen to him, still don’t want anything bad happen to him. I had a chance to get him into trouble yet I cannot do it.. Now I don’t even sure if I can go to court. Why i do this to my self? Why am I so stupid!
      I manage fine live without him. Why can I just be strong enough?

    • #15767
      Peaceful Pig

      The effects of this behaviour really are damaging to our humanity, sense of self and confidence. I truly believed that I was forgetful, stupid, disorganised etc and joined him in saying it about myself. After I left him he carried on the gaslighting, some of it by text and the craziness was so obvious in writing. Didn’t be realise I would just check a couple of earlier texts and see he’d said the complete opposite?! Then I realised who was the stupid one! X*x

    • #15769

      PP, yes i felt crazy, the worse of it was that it was so subtle, my ex was not physically aggressive or even loud or verbally abusive, he was calculated and quietly devious. It was devastating to my mental health, but fortunately after a period of NC those crazy feelings go away.

    • #15773
      Peaceful Pig

      Precisely HA, mine was just the same. It was so confusing. No contact is such a relief xx

    • #16933

      Myself and my ex hadn’t seen each other for about two weeks. The first week it was because I was busy and had things on. The next week he told me he was busy. When we caught up with each other after this period he told me the first week he had felt depressed but the second week he was happy and cheerful. He hadn’t actually been specific about the reasons why he felt those ways. To read this it seems not even worth mentioning and people not aware of the complexities of abuse will not understand. When he said to me how he was feeling during those 2 weeks I had not asked him how he were feeling and we were not having any conversation about that, he volunteered it. When there are mind games, cryptic messages and withholding of information going on as standard, I felt he were playing mind games and not being clear or communicating directly. It caused me mental confusion & neediness.

    • #16962

      Reading through this has bought alot back!
      Gaslighting actually wasn’t something they covered in my freedom courses…but looking back that’s exactly what he did. All the time. Since day one.

      From what I remember it got worse after I’d left and he found where I was living…he seemed to get off on the subtlety of driving me crazy without me knowing it. It was tiny little things that he did that terrified me to my core but seemed like nothing to everyone else, even if the police did ever go to him he’d just laugh it off and go “oh she called you because her tv was on when she came home? she probably forgot to turn it off before she went out” (as a random example) and that was that…

      Gaslighting is very much the re-writing of past events to suit them and make you look crazy.

      One of my exes weirdest ones was what side of the bed he slept on…it was always (for example) the left side. Until he’d come in one night and kick off that I was on the right side, and that’s “his” side and has always been his side and I have to move. And then however long later, he’d be dragging out of the left side, screaming at me about what am I doing in his side and how it’s always been his side and he never sleeps on the other side of the bed, only that one.

      You really can’t even fight their un-logic with actual logic!

    • #21110

      I’ve just seen some new info on Gas Lighting, here it is XXXXX

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