Sunday, July 16, 2023

Emotional Manipulation Tactics Used

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Emotional manipulation is getting more popular among couples, friends, family, and colleagues in the workplace.

Anyone can be a victim of emotional manipulation especially if the red flags are ignored.

Often times a partner, friend or even a family member is fully aware they are emotionally manipulative, however, in a few cases some do that ignorantly.

Don’t be scared, everyone around you is not emotionally manipulative as emotionally manipulative tactics are usually found in people with certain personality disorders, like sociopaths and narcissists.

Emotional manipulation is a cunning and nefarious tactic some individuals employ to gain control over others' emotions and behaviour.

To prevent yourself and your loved ones from falling victim to such damaging behaviour, it is essential to understand these manipulative techniques.

Let's explore some of the typical strategies employed by manipulators as we dig into the area of emotional manipulation.

Why Would a Partner Use Manipulation?

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In most manipulative relationships, partners may resort to emotional manipulation for countless reasons.

It usually begins with the desire to assert dominance and control over their significant partner.

An unsecured partner, family member and even colleagues might employ manipulative tactics to alleviate their own feelings of inadequacy or maintain a sense of power in the relationship.

Manipulators might use emotional tactics to isolate their partners from friends and family, leaving them emotionally vulnerable.

At this point, their victims will have no choice but to depend on them.

Signs You’re Being Manipulated

If you are wondering why, you are unable to recognise if you are being emotionally manipulated, it is just because some manipulators are very subtle.

Recognising emotional manipulation is a gateway to breaking free from the grip of an oppressor.

When you start feeling some of these signs, just know that you might be a victim of manipulation.

Signs To Look Out For

  •       Feeling consistently guilty
  •       Anxious, or fearful around a certain person
  •       Experiencing a loss of self-esteem and confidence
  •      If your opinions and desires are consistently disregarded, and you find yourself second-guessing your judgment, you might be dealing with emotional manipulation.

Understand that manipulators often play the victim card. They make you feel responsible for their emotions and actions.

Who are the Manipulators?

Anyone can be manipulative. It could be friends, family, romantic partners or colleagues.

Don’t think that manipulative behaviour is gender-based or limited to a specific age group.

But certain personality traits and psychological disorders might make someone more vulnerable to using manipulation as a tactic to navigate through their relationships.

However, know that some manipulators might be dealing with their internal struggles and you have to approach the issue with empathy.

19 Emotional Manipulation Tactics

  1. Gaslighting: An emotional manipulator distort the truth to make you question your memory and perception of reality.
  2. Guilt Tripping: A manipulator uses guilt as a weapon to make you feel responsible for their unpleasant feelings or behaviours.
  3. Silent Treatment: Manipulators would withdraw affection and communication. They exercise control over you and make you feel anxious.
  4. Love Bombing: By love bombing, manipulators shower you with too much love and attention so they can quickly gain your trust and affection.
  5. Isolation: Isolation is a dangerous weapon used by manipulators to distance you from your family, friends and other support network. They use it to weaken your emotional support.
  6. Playing the Victim: In other to inspire compassion and make you feel responsible for their well-being, manipulators present themselves as victims.
  7. Undermining Self-Esteem: A manipulator employs the tactic of criticizing, insulting, or belittling you to diminish your esteem.
  8. Emotional Blackmail: A manipulator will threaten to end the relationship or harm themselves if you don't act the way they want.
  9. Blame Shifting: Manipulators deflect responsibility for their actions and mistakes onto you or others.
  10. Emotional Withholding: They withhold affection or emotional support to manipulate your behavior.
  11. Triangulation: Manipulators bring a third party into the relationship to create jealousy and competition.
  12. Fear and Intimidation: A person who manipulates may apply fear or intimidation to control and dominate you emotionally.
  13. Conditional Love: By this, a manipulator shows you love and appreciation only when you meet their demands.
  14. Overpromising: Manipulators make lofty promises in an effort to keep you interested and hopeful, but they rarely keep them.
  15. Stonewalling: One thing a manipulator will do to you is to leave you feeling frustrated and unheard since they won't converse with you or have a conversation.
  16. Projection: You begin to question your own motivations when manipulators attribute their undesirable attributes to you.
  17. Minimizing Accomplishments: They denigrate your accomplishments in an effort to undermine your sense of value.
  18. Feigning Helplessness: Manipulators make you feel responsible for their welfare, by acting helpless.
  19. Emotional Rollercoaster: To keep you off-balance and under their control, they inflict emotional highs and lows.

Emotional Manipulation by an Abusive Partner

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Emotional manipulation can ruin a marriage or romantic relationship. It is important to always discuss and communicate feelings to your partner.   

Setting boundaries is also important in dealing with manipulators.

It is critical to recognize the indicators of emotional manipulation in every situation in order to break free and seek help.


How to Get Help for Emotional Manipulation

If you find yourself entangled with a manipulative partner, family member, or colleague, it is very important to seek help and support.

It is not always easy to break free from a manipulator but it is not impossible. You need to reach out to friends, family, or a therapist who can guide you.

Keep in mind that you deserve to be in an affectionate and respectful relationship and there are resources at your disposal to help you liberate yourself from emotional control.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is emotional manipulation always intentional?

No, never. Some people might unintentionally manipulate others as a result of their personality quirks or unsolved concerns.

Emotional manipulation can nonetheless be hurtful and damaging, intentional or not.

Can emotional manipulation be overcome?

Yes, with the correct assistance and materials, people can defeat emotional manipulation. Setting boundaries, asking for assistance, and recognizing the warning signals are crucial elements in the recovery process.

Should I confront the manipulator?

It can be difficult to confront the manipulator, and results are not always guaranteed. Prior to participating in a direct confrontation, pay attention to your safety and well-being and think about getting assistance from a friend or therapist you can trust.

Can therapy help victims of emotional manipulation?

Absolutely. Therapy can provide a safe space to process emotions, gain insights, and develop coping strategies to break free from the cycle of manipulation and abuse.

Is it possible for manipulators to change?

While change is conceivable, it's important to keep in mind that it must originate within the manipulator.

Meaningful change is unlikely if they refuse to accept responsibility for their actions and ask for assistance.

How can I protect myself from future manipulation?

You can assist safeguard yourself from falling prey to future manipulative strategies by being knowledgeable about emotional manipulation, setting and maintaining boundaries, and developing a healthy self-esteem.

What are healthy relationship dynamics?

Trust, respect for one another, open communication, and the ability to express feelings without worrying about manipulation or reprisal are the foundations of healthy relationships.

Can manipulative behaviour be passed down through generations?

It is true that manipulative behaviour can be taught and passed down through the generations.

However, raising awareness and taking action can stop this loop and encourage better dynamics in interpersonal relationships.