White lettering on grey background reads: Gaslighting, the narcissist's favorite tool

Gaslighting is my favourite term of the – whatever they call this era. Before it had a name, I called this behavior “bad boyfriend syndrome”. The bad boyfriend is toxic. He sleeps with your friend and then tells you you’re overreacting when you find out and get upset.

Gaslighting happens everywhere. It’s when you’re made to feel crazy or that what you know to be true, isn’t. It instills self-doubt and deflects from what you have identified as the real problem. It happens often in professional settings. I’ve worked with many gaslighters and you probably have too.

a graphic outlining the signs of Gaslighting: Denying, unreliable, accusing, isolating and doubting.

This article on Medium about gaslighting has gone viral, with good reason. The author warns us to prepare for gaslighting on a massive scale. He’s looking past the pandemic and thinking about when things get back to normal. But what’s normal? Well, that’s for us to define and we ought to spend some time doing that. He points out the benefits of our response to the pandemic and that perhaps we ought to hang onto some of them, even when the authorities tell us they didn’t happen.

Now, the entertaining side of gaslighting. Natalie Maines of Dixie Chicks experienced a messy, sad, drawn-out divorce from her actor husband who is – according to this song – a Gaslighter. And it makes for a pretty damn good tune and video. Enjoy!

3 thoughts on “Gaslighting”

  1. How you even managed to write this without mentioning the Mango Mussolini by name, is no small feat. We’re trying to limit our intake of US news but even the night show comedians are bringing us down. There’s far too much truth in humour and we just can’t take any more. I’m tired of people bashing our government just because they are from a part of the country that’s born to hate a Trudeau; I’m weary of those who can’t take a moment to be grateful for what we have and where we are. And finally, I am grateful beyond words that the borders are closed for another month to people who couldn’t stay home with all of their comforts, to help ease the burden on health care workers – or their neighbours. We are ALL vulnerable these days – and what people don’t realize is the long-lasting effects of a disease like COVID-19 on our respiratory systems. This is not the flu, and the gaslighting is beyond belief. Thanks for letting me vent. Write on, Sister, Write on.

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