Victims and Survivors of Psychopaths

from victim to survivor

Gas lighting: Messin’ with your mind

with 50 comments

 Gas lighting is written about in Women Who Love Psychopaths:  Inside the Relationships of Inevitable Harm.   J. Reid Meloy writes about it in The Psychology of Stalking:  Clinical and Forensic Perspectives.  The term “gas light” comes from the 1944 movie Gaslight, in which a gold-digger sweeps a woman off her feet, marries her, then deliberately sets about making his new wife and other people doubt her sanity.

Gas lighting is a form of psychological warfare that is deliberate and progressive in nature.  Gas lighters first start with subtle psychological warfare to diminish the victims self-confidence, to upset their sense of reality, and to make them doubt themselves.  They want to break the victim down a bit before engaging in more direct attacks, so the victim is in a weakened state and will be less likely to figure out what is going on and take action to protect themselves.

 Occasionally you may mention something the psychopath has said and he may deny ever having said it.  Perhaps you can’t find your purse, and the psychopath helps you look for it.  Finally it is located in the refrigerator.  He laughs and gives you an affectionate hug,  telling you that you just must be stressed.  A week or two later you’re hunting your car keys that you are positive you left on your computer desk because that is where you always leave them.  After searching for an eternity, you finally find them still in the car ignition.  Dear God, the psychopath says, someone could have stolen the car right out of the driveway due to your carelessness and forgetfulness!  You scratch your head and begin to think Hhhmn, maybe my memory is slipping.  It must be you, right?  Because who would ever suspect someone who professes to love you is deliberately doing these things to you?  But psychopaths are masters at gas lighting.

 Gas lighting is written about in Women Who Love Psychopaths:  Inside the Relationships of Inevitable Harm.  The authors, Sandra L. Brown, M.A. and Liane J. Leedom, M.D.,  say the psychopath will do all sorts of devious things to try to make the victim think they are mentally deficient or having a nervous breakdown, and that the psychopath enjoys the process of inflicting psychological damage.

 J. Reid Meloy writes about it in The Psychology of Stalking:  Clinical and Forensic Perspectives, giving an example of a 70 year old man stalking his 71 year old girlfriend.  One of the things this man did was to gas light his girlfriend by sneaking into her backyard in the middle of the night to rearrange her patio furniture.  Meloy also asks the reader to imagine the frustration of a victim of gas lighting trying to convince the police that a perpetrator broke into her home, yet did nothing more than move the candlesticks to the bathroom.

Eleanor White has written a review of a book by Victor Santoro:  Gas lighting:  How to Drive Your Enemies Crazy.  In the review she points out that the harassment techniques are both subtle and devious and indicates stalking victims will immediately recognize the techniques.  Some of the techniques in the book talk about how to cause disorientation in the victim by sneaking into their home and subtly moving items around, or stealing an item then putting it back at a later date.  There is advice on starting a whispering campaign against the target, so multiple people help damage the target’s reputation.  There are also techniques in the book designed to alienate the target from family members, friends, neighbors, employers, etc. and to make them doubt the target’s sanity.  Here are a few chapter titles from the book:

          Gas lighting Philosophy

          Causing Disorientation

          Building Paranoia

          Destroying Your Target’s Reputation

          Provoking Confrontations

This is nasty stuff and the psychopath does not need a book to go by, as he is a natural at it. 

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Written by victimsofpsychopaths

January 27, 2009 at 7:03 pm

50 Responses

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  1. All this happened to me too:( I feel like crying )because this is so sad remembering and I wasted so much time trying to warn my acquaintances who have taken his side and family too. I fear every day what he might do to them now that I have left the scene, it gives me severe headaches thinking about it ,so I have to force myself to pretend I do not know about it and focus on getting back to school- but I know I kidding myself ,but I still can’t think straight and I am fighting daily to overcome this so I can enjoy my academics again.. My world has been crushed and destroyed – I am isolated and alone and no one knows. Unfortunately, this is frightening and painful, but in a way I have convinced myself that I am somewhat safer avoiding society for now after this experience and I hate this, but I tell myself before I go to bed at night (and by the way, its so hard to sleep anymore) I will get my energy and thoughts back soon its just going to take a while – well, I hope so. Why would someone do this to another person, my life is literally ruined and I hope to fix it rather than self destruct any further. I hope..I hope.. and I hope I will be okay at some point..

    sunshine

    January 29, 2009 at 4:56 am

  2. Why don’t local clinics, hospitals, law enforcement and courts have any specialty in this phenomenon.

    This experience has taught those of us something most don’t understand, but my mind has turned a bit mushy from constant mind games and silent harassment strategies from the psychopath and I am struggling because I am afraid to enroll at the university this semester due to physical and emotional drain. I can’t enjoy learning or even picking up after my dogs in the back yard, I just can’t seem to perform any of my usual chores. I am so mad and sad, but dealt with it for 8 years now, and the law does not care. Society does not get it. I refuse to tell my neighbors because where I live perpetrators are give empathy and victims are shunned. I live in a very liberal area where people like to feel sorry for the bad guy.

    I hate it, and that’s why I have withdrawn from society. People are stupid out there:(

    sunshine

    January 29, 2009 at 5:06 am

  3. I was involved with a sociopath, it was the worst mistake of my life. My willingness to be a victim left me emotionally crippled as I actually let a person do this to me. I participated in the mess because he used gaslighting, manipulative tactics and also used excessive flattery , along with creating a wedge between my friends so I was alienated and depended on him for emotional support.

    I see it for what is is now, I see how he was able to damage me and how I did not realize what it was he was doing. I needed to keep retelling the story and sort through the mess to actually figure out what had happened

    I am stable now, I am freee, I am happy and I am stronger. I realize I need to depend on myself, and those times I feel weak or unsure, I have to get help from a professional

    catherine

    February 15, 2009 at 6:36 pm

  4. i AM SURVIVOR OF SATANIC RIYUAL ABUSE AND I AM IN A LITTLE REDKNECK TOWN IN CALIFORNIA CALLED RED BLUFF, THE “VESPOR LODGE” MASONICS ALONG WITH THEIR HIEARCHY AND THIER LOW LIFE GRUNTS ARE REVICTIMIZING, GASLIGHTING ME AND MORE…iHAVE A CHILD I AM JUST TRYING TO FIND ASAFEHOUSE TO GO TO, THANKS FOR LISTENING, WITH ALL GODS LOVE, GIANNA

    GIANNA charles

    February 22, 2009 at 8:03 am

  5. These responses sound to me like they were written by a psychopath. The one I have such a problem with loves to hear about the sick things he does… This sounds like a trap to me. The last thing anybody should do is give the psychopath attention — it’s what he craves and he’ll do anything to get it. The psychopath is completely empty inside. The only way he even knows he’s alive is when people validate him by talking about him or what he has done. DON’T TALK ABOUT IT!!! Journal, write things down and tear them up, whatever… But talking to somebody else is the same as talking to the psychopath… Even worse because now there is one other person (the individual you spoke to) for him to get attention from. And he loves it!!! Find a way to help yourself without giving him more of what he wants and craves (you are strong enough alone — you don’t NEED somebody else — especially the lunatic). Starve the mofo!!! These psychological parasites are needier than hell. Don’t give them a damn thing — especially the attention they so desperately crave.

    George

    March 23, 2009 at 2:30 pm

  6. Sounds like my ex husband. He really had me thinking I was crazy…..

    heaven-marie

    April 1, 2009 at 12:45 am

  7. Gianna there are no safehouses there fore you to go to? Keep god and bath with you!

    heaven-marie

    April 1, 2009 at 12:47 am

  8. yes, this has been done to me by one person who i have known for many years. however, over the past year i have slowly come to the realization that he is a sociopath. i have researched it, and gone over it in my mind for almost a year and although it is painful and even scary to admit, he is a sociopath. he has manipulated and emotionally toyed with people for years. he has gas lighted me to the point where i constantly have been questioning my sanity. he gets under your skin and manipulates in such a subtle way that you don’t even really know what is happening. i feel confused and lost and i realize that i have to get away from him and never have anything to do with him again. i am scared of him. i don’t believe he would ever physically harm me but i have a deep seated terror of him because i think he knows i am on to him and i have to pretend i don’t know what he is doing. i feel like my life is a lie right now. i finally know the truth after so many years and i have to pretend like he is normal, when i know he is not. i mean we all have issues, i have tons of them, i am not talking about issues or even other mental disorders. it is somehow different with a sociopath. it is like they are a hollow shell, that doesn’t want anyone to feel love, and they want to control everything and there is this dark cloud that i feel hanging over me. his presence is like a dark cloud. it is in direct contrast to what he portrays to new people and acquaintances. when he is in the public eye it is like a switch goes off and he comes alive. but, one on one he slowly reveals his true subtle evil character. and anyone that disrupts his image that he is created will be faced with a rage. he is also, on the far end of the spectrum, like i have never seen before in anyone, extremely impatient and very, very, very greedy and selfish. even towards people that have lent him 1000’s of dollars or treated him to things. he wedges gaps between people, sabotages potential romantic encounters between people by using subtle manipulative tactics, will use contradictory statements when confronted. i could go on and on and on. i hope this page becomes more active. i need to hear from other people who have been gas lighted and hear their descriptions about how it feels both physically and emotionally.

    smokescreen

    September 3, 2009 at 8:32 pm

  9. don’t feel sorry for these vampires – I am anti revenge (nietzche) but in some cases … it works

    sally

    October 3, 2009 at 8:29 am

  10. Omg
    This. Happened 2me also. The guy i went out with not only gaslighted me frm word go. He made me a target in my workplace. He knew some1 then told me i imagined it he had me petrifif to go to dr. eventually i walked frm wrk cuz i was scared id lost my mind i almost lost my home i took an overdose cuz 4 thot i was no use to any one this way. He turned my family against helpn me with ths everyone just thinks im nuts. I became obsessed tryn to prove it all happened so i have my family support. My life is ruined. I am a shadow of the person i was, my daughter says she wants her old mum back. I struggle everyday tryn to rebuild my life i cant climb back, i no longer believe in god. My family still think i was delusional, please help dr answer to everything is a pill.

    Amanda

    October 25, 2009 at 3:37 pm

  11. I met a CEO in 2004 he was perfect @ we planned tparry -he wantrd to adopt my child.Truly a dream romance Until he bought the house & it was time tp enroll her for the following year. I began to have problems withy computer and everything electronic pretty much. Even the clothes appeared to “move” (I npw know that is done byagnets and the “beep beep” man ” my daughter was so terrified of was controlling this from outside.he became mediately mean and didn’t wantvto hear or see any evidence someone was doing this ( of course O nevet thpight it was him) that should have told me it was because he was so kind and knew I was not a nut- I had lived thete 5 yrs w/ no calls to the sherriff or fear-This began in Jan 05 within 3 months I was using coke to stay up to protecty baby-like many here everyone including family (he talked tp) yhought I was imagining this-I had never lied or been fearful and that made me isolated the coke made it 10 times worse because he gave me so much $ I was really not SURE what Was real the last 3 mos!!!
    In July DHR came out because my ala had gonr off so much a& ythe sherriff tjought I was nut-no one suspected usong b/c of yhe house and way I lived.BUT I was so mean by then I called them threatrning to sue them yada ysd and yhen I was supposed to stay witjh someone until the alarm was fixed-HE refused to even let my child stay even thougj He caused it ( I now know)they took her the day begore her birthday

    lee

    December 19, 2009 at 12:38 pm

  12. I was married to a sociopath for fourteen years. We met overseas and he followed me around the world, declaring his undying love. We are now divorced, butr it was a pinful and hideous extraction.
    Three years on, I have changed my phone number to stop his relentless calls, yet have left amobile number for him with which to reach his daughters.
    Ironically, within two weeks of meeting him I told him that I thought he was a pathological control freak and left him! I left him about six times over the course of the relationship, but was co-erced into returning via numerous manipulations.
    We have tow daughters together, neither of them wish to see him at present, and I have been very honest about his dangerous character.
    The gaslighting tequniques were enless – and although we had many councelling sessions together (he was diagnosed with bipolar disorder) then his last psychologist said that he did not believe that it was Bipolar- but indeed socipathy.
    it took years to figure out what was going on and I was in a state of “hyper arousal” (extreme stress bordering on PTSD)for much of the time.
    I was inredulous when I discovered his affairs, and since we have parted the defects have become glaringly obvious.
    He is a sex obsessed. Would literally shalg anything that moves. His choice of sexual partners (the ones that I know of) are questionable to say the least. he has delved into the sadisitic world of “Second Life” (virtual realtiy game) and had online affairs as well as numerous encounters with prostitues and the like in Hong Kong bars.
    During the divorce, I had to take a restraining order out against him, he stalked me for nearly two years, hacked into my computer and read all my emails, took plates and bowls formthe house (which the children found mysteriously at his place later) took my garden rake (then offered to “buy” me one to replace it so that he could look like the hero)
    he was constantly creating dramas, then stepping in to “save” us like a hero!
    His actions became so obvious it was almost laughable. for years he threatened to cut my face up inot peices so that “if he couldn’t have me, no-one else would), he threatenend that I would never see my children again…and so mcuh more.
    Now he is with his eighth girlfirend in 18 months (that we know of) and texted his daughters to tell them that he was getting married to her (after knowing her for five weeks! LOL!)
    Yet he still obsessiovely calls me, hence the number change.
    No cantact is the only way to go,which can be extremely challenging when you have two young children (11 and 13)
    However, after years of gaslighting and it’s insiduous effects (he would say something one day then completely deny it the next day), take things and accuse me of losing them, deny he ahd done something (hit the dog) when he did right in front of my eyes…and so on.
    For those of you who have expterienced this, I am grateful to have a found empathic responses.
    I am now sticking to my No Contact rule and hopefully I can move ahead with strength and dignity.
    I had to take an intervention order against him, but as you may be aware, this does not necessarily stop the abuse.
    I urge anyone who has undergone this challenge to leave, stay out and let the local law enforcement officers know that there is a threatening presence in your life. Part of me is desperate to help his latest victim (bride to be) but I cannot – firstly, she wouldn’t beleive me, secondly my motivation would be questioned (I am the ex wife!) and lastly, it would put the children and I at risk…
    However, if I can help anyone else by simply sharing this experience, then I am deeply thankful.
    Thank you for hearing me out and shring your thoughts with me.
    We are not alone on this journey, and although apparently 4% of the population are sociopathic, it pays to bear in mind that 96% are NOT!
    Love and light to all.
    x x x

    Jen

    December 27, 2009 at 1:47 am

  13. Amanda, I have experienced the same torture – the bad mouthing – his family will not talk to me and have cut me out of their lives and my family think I am “over emotional’ – however I do believe my mother is a socipath too, as her behaviour is very similar to my ex’s…
    Do not give up or lose sight of the truth and dignity that lies within you. To the sociopath it is all a game…
    this is your life and you owe it yourself and your gorgeous daughter (mine say the same type of thing to me – re: wanting the “old” mummmy back)
    But that is because I have now developed a serious auto immune disease as a result of all the stress.
    You are NOT the loser in this sick game honey.

    He is.
    Stay strong.
    x

    Jen

    December 27, 2009 at 2:01 am

  14. Hi Jen,
    Your experiences are all too familiar to myself and countless others. Your story inspires strength and inspiration in others to leave.
    I believe that when we all realize that the person we first encountered was just purely an illusion and not reality, there is a process we all go through. It is extreme in the emotional and psychological sense. It feels like we have to come out of a dark tunnel to once again define our identity, our values and beliefs. You are unable to describe it fully unless someone else has been there. I believe we all suffer some form of Post Traumatic Stress as a result.
    From my experience, when “I” came to the decision that I had to leave for my own emotional, psychological and physical survival, planning my exit without his knowledge was my priority. Financially I photo copied everything I could. The laws deal with fact and not emotion. So I compiled all the “facts” that I needed. I also made sure of my rights in staying in my home and changed the locks after he left for the office and boxed up all his belongings and sent them on to his mother. I ensured my safety was at an optimum by “NO CONTACT”. If you do not have any contact, if you do not respond in any way other than through third parties, then the psychopath has nothing to work with. You do not owe him any explanations. His behaviour has not earned him any rights where your life is concerned. Three months and he or she will be on to the next victim. He or she already had several lined up through his numerous affairs and they will get on with their lives. The threats they make are to be taken seriously, however you cannot live your life in terror. I believe that the high percentage of psychopaths get bored very easily and if they replace you quickly, then you have a very successful outcome regarding your personal safety. “NO CONTACT and NO RESPONSE.
    We at the end of the day have choices and options. Yes, ending a marriage or relationship is particularly difficult in many ways. You can read as much information as you like on the internet. But ultimately, we alone have the choice to discontinue these damaging relationships.
    I believe instead of talking about their infamous behaviour on these sites, we could possibly discuss ways in which to leave these harmful relationships intact in the support of others. I feel this information is an inspiration to others in that they will find the necessary courage and determination to turn their lives around and back on course in what is right for them. Accept that it is going to be a painful journey but also one of great self growth and development.
    Leaving the psychopath can be a defining moment in ones life in that you realize you are a person of worth, you have the right to live without fear, you have the right to be loved for the person you are, you have the right to be with someone who makes you feel good about yourself. You have to “accept” it will never come from the psychopath. In every relationship before you and after you, it will be an exact repeat performance of his life with you, not matter what “illusion” he presents to you. Please believe that fact.
    I believe the psychopath has never evolved emotionally and stays at the emotional age of 5. Does anyone really wish to stay with another who is a child in a mans/womans body? How can they contribute positively to your life?
    If you nurtured and loved yourself half as much as what you gave to such a damaging relationship, I guarantee you will get to where you need to go safely and successfully.
    Thanks for reading.

    GirlFromOz

    January 1, 2010 at 11:11 pm

  15. I have prayed for help figuring out what was going on in my relationship and how there was no reasonable explanation for them. I doubted my own sanity, after being told I was crazy.. things just wear out.. I am just paranoid… i must of made people mad over the years for them to ruin my things… there is no way one person could have that much time to do all these things… you are the evil one, you are the enemy..All these scrap cars and piles of metal make me money… you keep me up all night and I can’t go to work.. etc. etc. etc…
    Now I can understand why the last 15 years have been so confusing….

    The very first time I went to his residence I should of listened to my gut.. literally.. I still remember to this day how it freaked me out. From day one there were problems that were not reasonably explained. Strange things that didn’t make any sense I had no idea of what was to come…all for the wanting companionship. I thought maybe his family really did think that I belittled him, and broke him down to no self esteem, like he said I did, which was not true, his issues were way deeper than that, and it breaks my heart to see how he doesn’t feel good about himself enough to change his ways or thoughts or maybe even find a faith that believes life doesn’t have to hurt. That he could see life is special worth making the best of, not stating..”its just another day.. today is a good day to die”
    I
    WHY would anyone want to do these things to people? I always thought a relationship was about two people who cared for each other and each others well being? Who were able to grow together not being left all alone wondering who is cutting holes in my clothes or how come I have 3 wheels come completely off my vehicles? Why have my brakes gone out several times while going over the pass or how could my gas tank start to leak directly on my exhaust when he knew I was going to pick up my financial aid check. Did I mention he is a mechanic?? out of 5 vehicles over the years each one had the drivers window screwed up and conveniently could not be locked. regardless of the alarm installed? No coincidence..Why would all my vehicles not have enough compression to keep from rolling once they were put into park? Even with the keys out of the ignition? We are talking about Corvettes, Infiniti Q-45’s, Ford trucks. Two of them were manual transmissions that would roll out of first gear??
    I have still today over 40 pairs of 501’s that have the crotch ripped out?? I save them as they are solid proof that it is not my imagination. Kinda unusual to happen to a woman’s jeans. I even called Levi to see if this was due to a change in their quality standards. They just told me, “you will be okay”.
    I know there is a good person inside there but I seriously think he is possessed. When we were praying together he TURNED IT AROUND to be in the worshipping of Satan and by Rebuking JESUS?!?!?!

    started to see the common denominator in every situation. No one wants to believe they are sleeping with the enemy. But after so many years of it happening under our own roof, when only the two of us where present, there is only so many times they can tell us we are crazy, they wouldn’t do that to us. In short of any other defense.. besides the “your crazy if you think I am doing that” It would only cause them problems, I must be doing it to my own stuff. Ok.. Why?? I am going to cut perfect squares 1.5″ x 1.5″ out of my most sentimental belongings?? Curtains, towels, etc.. that were made from the most special person to me? now Why did it take me 15 years to see that this is something I have no idea of how to help, nor fix, through as many different possible ways I have been able to think of.

    I decided to return to school. I got my AA and will have my Bachelors in Business Management June 2011. He doesn’t do anything to make me feel safe, in fact, I am scared to stand in front of the windows in our home for fear of being shot. Five years ago someone broke into his home, stole his gun, then came back 30 min. after I had left and shot him 9 times. He chased the guy out of his house and told me the guy screamed “your possessed”. He survived having his own 9mm unloaded into him, crawled over to the neighbors and made it to their front porch before collapsing. No doubt in my mind he is a survivor, but why wouldn’t he want to change his ways. Sometimes I feel like I am here for a tool or a sacrifice in the devils playground. EVERY Christmas in this relationship I spent with my partner I became so sick I couldn’t get out of the house. Easter Sunday I had woke up to my kitchen floor covered in at least 1,000 termites. I have had nightmares and a feeling that I would be shot if I went hunting with his family, for seven or eight years I have had this horrible feeling. This year when they went hunting a young boy lost his life, he was shot while sleeping in the motorhome.
    Life is so confusing, and far from fair. Thank you for letting me talk about my situation and it was much needed. GOD BLESS

    till death do we part?

    February 12, 2010 at 7:13 pm

  16. If there is any type of support group for people trying to heal from these abusers, please post the link where I can access it.

    till death do we part?

    February 12, 2010 at 7:17 pm

  17. Hello to all my fellow sufferer’s of “Gaslighting”. One thing we all in common is that to anyone else who has not experienced this insidious form of torture; we appear to be irrational and delusional. I am currently going through a divorce after 4-1/2 years of a marriage that consisted of maybe a total of 30 happy days. To make matter worse, my Sociopathic husband is an attorney. I could write a book and probably will one day explaining all the mind games he played on me, including placing a knife underneath my babies diaper when I turned my back for a moment before placing our son on the diaper laying on the mattress. I knew he wanted me to freak out and go nuts, after all that is what feeds the demon inside him; but I ignored it; I picked up the knife and placed it in my night stand as if nothing had even happened, I changed my baby’s diaper and gave him a bottle and put him back to bed. Then I turned over to my husband and whispered in his ear as he was awake and told him I was so sorry to disappoint him for not delivering the drama and terror he had so anticipated from me upon discovering the gift he left underneath the baby’s diaper; but then I told him I was really disappointed in him; I told him “can’t you be a little more creative and less obvious?” I told him, “these mind games of yours are really getting boring because you’re so easy to figure out and predict.” Insulting their ego really drives them nuts and showing them that they have no effect on you takes away their sense of having control. Of course it took me a long time to reach that point. In the beginning of it all i was just a normal person reacting like any normal person would; but I learned how to beat him at his own game.

    Let me offer some advice:

    1. If you are being gaslighted your gaslighter “IS” a sociopath and “WILL NEVER CHANGE” no matter how much you love them or feel you need them; they will only continue to hurt you over and over again until you are left with no self-respect, no self-esteem, and you will utterly become disconnected to everything that is neccessary to live a happy vital life.

    2. This is very important – keep a daily journal hidden from them. Write down everything that occurs and how it made you feel; Judges take journals and documentation seriously; it shows a consistent pattern of behavior.

    3. “DO NOT KEEP SILENT ABOUT WHAT IS HAPPENING’. It is not your fault, ” YOU ARE NOT THE CRAZY ONE!!!!” Reach out to others that you trust, attend classes for Domestic Violence and get counseling; get into a support group for abused persons; you’ll be surprised that there are others out there like yourself that are looking for others to confide in.

    4. “CALL THE POLICE” – If nothing else, there will be police report to substanciate the issues you address in your journal. Start building your case.

    5. “TAKE PICTURES” – Take pictures of items you have in your house, if you are like I was, my gaslighter would take things and then say I never had them.

    6. “KNOW AND BELIEVE, THAT YOU ARE NOT TO BLAME” – Know who you are and don’t ever let go of that. My husband worked so hard to try and get me to bend my mind and I told him that the day I gave him permission to define reality to me that I may as well just walk myself straight into the insane assylum because that’s where he wanted to put me and even used his law degree to threaten that he could have me committed.

    7. “FIGHT!!!!” You will not be able to do this until you have completely acknowledged the fact that this person is not nor ever was the person you believed them to be or the person they presented themselves to be. Greive your loss, see yourself as if your are at their funeral and they will never be coming back; once you have separated yourself from the emotional ties you had with them all the rest will be easier, because you will no longer care and that will take away their ability to manipulate you emotionally.

    8. “FIND A CHURCH TO ATTEND” – If you do not have a faith then find one. If it had not been for my faith in God I never would have survived this. It was a comfort to me to know that when no one else understood or believed what was going on that God did, and God cared. People often ask or complain, “Why did God allow this to happen?” The only to explain that is this; God has given each one of us “Free-Will”. Otherwise, we would be his little robots, totally controlled by him and we would all be perfect wouldn’t we? Because God gave us “Free-Will’ people, not God, make choices that create chaos and pain for the innocent. Find a faith and a group of people that can support you until you are able to stand on your feet.

    9. “DON’T GIVE UP ON LIFE” – Life is a gift that we can either choose to embrace or choose to hide from. You have the power within yourself to do amazing things, you just need to believe it.

    10. In closing of this long suggested help list, please know this, I understand, I’ve been there and still going through it myself; I just wanted to offer to you what has helped me and is still helping me to cope with being a victim of gaslighting.

    Be strong, don’t give them permission to control you or manipulate you; tune them out altogether and make plans for your exit with the least damage to yourself and your children if you have them. If you stay with a gaslighter, the only thing you are accomplishing is just a more lengthy period of pain for yourself and anyone that is in that envvironment with you. I understand how difficult it is to let go; it took me 4-1/2 years to to finally say “ENOUGH ALREADY”.

    Please know you are not alone, you are not crazy and you are not stupid. I pray for you all, we are in a world apart but we each know and understand what has happened to the other, because we that misfortunate 4% that met the 4% of the sociopaths; we need not feel guilty that we fell for their charm and attentions they expressed to us, or feel guilty that we trusted them only to be betrayed; thank God we have a heart that knows what pain feels like; they will never know what it is to “feel anything”.

    My therapist told me the best way
    to get revenge on your sociopath is “TO KEEP ON LIVING LIFE AS IF THEY NEVER MADE A DENT IN YOURS”.

    Meet my Monster

    February 18, 2010 at 4:40 pm

  18. Charismatic, highly sexual, intelligent, possessed of an exalted ego, abusive, projecting (ie ascribing their own actions to you), highly manipulative, ungrateful, devious, suspicious, controlling, jealous with or without cause, and weirdly competitive. (This was a woman sociopath.) The gaslighting –nasty abuse–started early and never ended, and my rule now is contact only thru a third party.

    keith

    February 26, 2010 at 5:10 pm

  19. I was involved with a foreigner (middle eastern) for awhile. Whenever something strange would happen he’d tell me that I was crazy he didn’t know what I was talking about? He’d accuse me of very serious things, the latest having broken he and his girlfriend up afterwards which he started a whisper campaign against me. He sexually taunted me for years…. I am saying all of this because it seems to that this sort of behavior is very common in patrarchal societies ..like the middle east. I have know several men from there and gaslighting is like normal behavior to them? They think it is OK, there is nothing wrong with it? Any other people with any experience like this?
    It seems like this guy had ALOT to hide and anyone who got to close to the truth was slandered or completely shut down…..

    mary

    March 3, 2010 at 5:39 pm

  20. I am a 45 yearold women and I was also involved with a middle eastern man and gaslighting happend throughout our relationship. We were together for a nine months and he become progressively worse. When you say sexually taunted what do you mean? The socipath that I was involved with would literally say they love me and turn against me the next minute. It was like a completly different person. The longer I became involved with him the worst the abuse would get. He would ignore my phone calls, taunt me and continue to break up with me, throw my sexual past in my face and laugh at me when I would cry. He even held a knife to my thoart and threatened to kill me. The hardest part is after these arguments he would be the nice man I fell in love with and the vicious cycle would continue. The other hardest part is that someone this evil can actually exist. He will start argments just to laugh at me. This person is so sick that they actually saved voicemails on his answering machine of me crying. This is just a brief synoposis of the horrible trauma I have endured.

    sadgirl123631

    March 22, 2010 at 4:05 am

  21. I really need you to pray for me and my children. This is a very long story but please read it to try and have some understanding of what I have been going through. I have prayed each and every day just to get through the next. I need to find comfort in the thought that there are others who might feel compassion for my situation and pray for us as well.

    I am a broken woman who is on her last breath to fight. I am so distraught so I am here writing to you because I have no one else to talk to.

    I met a charming, silver tongued sociopath 17 years ago. Sociopath, at least I now know the name of what or who he is now. He fit all the traits to a tee.
    He swept me off my feet and convinced me to marry him. Before him, I had a career, a life, and friends. But soon all that changed when I found out that I was pregnant with our first child. He was overjoyed but let me know right away that no mother of his children would be a “working mom”. He immediately told me I needed to stay home and prepare for the birth of our child. At first it seemed like he was just overly concerned about me, I was actually flattered at his requests that later turned into demands. Those demands soon turned to absolute control of everything, where I went, who I saw. He began to have episodes of what he called “venting”. He would come home from work and if the house wasn’t clean or dinner wasn’t prepared he would “blow up”. He would start by telling me that he deserved to come home to a clean house, laundry done, and dinner on the table. After all I had nothing to do all day but take care of these things. When he was angry, he would say things like how he passed up on so many wonderful women he could have been with to be with me and that he wasn’t planning to spend the rest of his life with someone who didn’t appreciate him. I would always be shocked and devastated by his tone and comments. I would say to myself that this was not right, that this felt like abuse. However, I didn’t dare say this to him. He wouldn’t stop at that, he would start in on how he no longer found me attractive during my pregnancy weight gain. I would break down and cry. I would tell him I was sorry that I had done these things to make him unhappy. He always seemed so pleased to see me break down. He would always leave the house and me in tears. Sometimes he wouldn’t return until the next day. When he would return he would act as if he were going to leave and I would just break down, it was pathetic and only then would tell me that he wouldn’t leave and how I shouldn’t question him. I guess it was his way of apologizing. Only when I would tell him how sorry I was would he say he was also sorry. He would say that this was his “venting” and that if he couldn’t vent he would have a heart attack and die. He would tell me that having an aneurysm ran in his family and that his father and his father’s father died both this way at young ages. He would say things like he wouldn’t want to put me through his dying, leaving me alone to raise our child. I needed to know that he needed to vent or he might die. Then somehow he would turn everything around as if it were my entire fault. After all, he was now the only one that was the “bread winner” of our family and that I needed to appreciate all the pressures he faced bearing such responsibilities. With all this being said I would swallow any words that I thought of ever saying. I was pregnant, now living in a town where I knew no one and lived about 20 miles from another house. I convinced myself that somehow if I tried harder to be a better wife that things would get better. Soon my husband asked me to convince my family to give us money to start a business and additional funds to purchase our first home. He decided that doing all this in the state that my family lived in would take us closer to my family which he felt would make me happy, and that they could help us. My father agreed to help. Shortly before we were to close on the house my husband announced to me that he was facing IRS issues and that in order for us to survive this we needed to quickly get a divorce while he worked things out. This would mean that the house and business would go in my name only. He also asked me to keep this a secret from both my family and his. I felt I had to agree with whatever he said. What could I do? So with reluctance and sadness, I signed the divorce papers. This later turned out to be the biggest mistake of my life. Soon my husband was taking long business trips all during my pregnancy. He would turn off both his cell phone and even the phone in his hotel room saying he needed his sleep and didn’t want to be disturbed. Then the calls began from an assortment of women. It was always the same; they would call the house looking for him. When I would ask to take a message they would ask who I was. When I identified myself as his wife they often hung up. Other times they wouldn’t hang up but would make such comments as, “he didn’t mention a wife.” I would confront him about this and he would always deny everything. This would always trigger “venting” and him telling me how I was insecure and that I needed psychological help, from that point the vicious venting cycle would continue until again I would break down and cry. I would cry so hard and for so long that my head would ache so bad that I thought I would die. I didn’t die but often felt as if I would. One day he returned from a trip and I had unpacked his suitcase to find a pair of worn women’s underwear. I brought them to him and he immediately blamed it as a prank from one of the guys he had seen during his trip and then would turn things around as if this were my fault. He would point out my in securities and would drive me to tears. He would tell me that I had issues and baggage that I was obviously carrying from a bad childhood. He would then begin to attack my family and turn things in such a light that he was practically doing me a favor to be with me. He would then suggest that now he was only with me because I was pregnant with his child. If he had known that I would be such a burden to him in the beginning he would never had considered having a child with me. I grew increasingly depressed. I had no friends, as any I made he put an end to for one reason or another. The only interaction I ever had with anyone was at his own arrangement. I soon came to understand that he was only ever “friends” with people who could benefit him in some way. He would invite people over and expect me cook such impressive dinners and plan events to include them for what he explained to me would fund our future. Mostly these people were wealthy or had connections in some way that he felt would benefit him. However, in the end, if wasn’t benefiting in some way, he would end the friendships if they didn’t materialize into whatever he expected. Many times these friends were either much younger than us or single. It added to my worries as my husband would often go out or on road trips without me saying that I needed to stay home because I was pregnant. Many times there were other single women that were included who would blatantly flirt with my husband right in front of me and would act as if they had some knowledge of our relationship and treated me in such a way to make me feel as if they understood him in a way I could not. If I ever questioned him about any of these people or complained it would always upset him and drive him into a venting episode. Once, I became so distraught that I found out on one of his business trips that he was going to have dinner at a certain restaurant with another man. He told me this to make sure that I didn’t try and call him that evening because he would not be available to take any calls because this was an important meeting and didn’t want to be disturbed. I was as distraught as I was just sure that he was seeing someone else that I boldly called the restaurant and convinced the manager to find my husband (which was not hard to do as he stood out in a crowd). I told the manager that I wanted to surprise him and his dinner guests with a round of drinks on me and would provide a credit card to him along with a generous tip. The manager was all too eager to find my husband. As soon as he located someone who fit my husband’s description he returned to the phone to get the order. Of course I gave him the card number and asked how many were in the party. He confirmed that it was my husband and a woman. I asked the manager to send the drinks over and let both of them know that these were from his wife. Shortly, after I hung up my husband called. He was angry and said that I had embarrassed him that he was waiting to meet with the gentleman he was to have his meeting with and the woman that he was with was a friend of the man he was to meet with. He again turned it all around and brought me to tears on the phone. Once again, I was the one apologizing, begging for his forgiveness. He told me that I was crazy. I began to think that perhaps I was. Things continued to go downhill. Even with his family. Apparently he had borrowed a large sum of money from his mother long before I was ever in the picture and she and his whole family would treat me horribly justifying their actions by stating that our home, business everything was because of money they had given him. I knew this wasn’t true. However, he would never allow me to defend myself to them and told me that I could never tell them that all the money had come from my father. I also found out that he had borrowed money from others as well and had not paid them back. So I was just miserable. I felt so alone. It was a very difficult pregnancy. I always felt alone, my husband would never even come with me to any of my appointments or Lamaze classes. He was always busy or playing golf with people that he said would somehow benefit him with his business. We didn’t have insurance because he said we couldn’t afford it, he said that the business was not making any money. However, he always had a roll of 100 dollar bills in his pocket. He would always say that this was for show to the people he needed to impress which was how he was going to create a business for us to live. Whenever any bills came in for the business or if taxes were due he would pass this on to my family and tell them that there was no money in which to pay for them. Since everything was either in my name or my father’s credit my dad always felt obligated to pay the debt. This created such a rift between me and my family. My father began to ask my husband about the books. My husband would become enraged and take it out on me. I didn’t know what to do. I became so stressed out. I didn’t have anyone to talk to, no friends, I couldn’t tell my family. I was so ashamed. And my husband’s “venting” became worse. I cried so hard one night that in the morning when I woke and looked at my face and it was so red and swollen. The left side of my face didn’t look right nor did it feel right. My face was numb, I was uncontrollably drooling and my speech was slurred. Something was wrong. I woke my husband. I was panicked. He told me that it was my own fault for being so ridiculous and crying so hard. He told me to get dressed and drive him to the airport for a planned business trip, and that if I was that concerned I was a big girl and that I could drive myself to the doctor. I remember continuing to cry and begging him not to leave. He told me that he needed to go on this trip; he scolded me saying that this is how he pays our bills and how he would only be able to pay for my hospital bill to have the baby if he left on this trip. So, after I had dropped him off. I went to the doctor to find out that I had “bells palsy”. They said that stress could have brought it on but no one could really be sure. The doctor told me that my blood pressure was out of control and that I needed to take it easy until the baby came. I was two months away and no one could possibly be aware of the sadness and stress that I was feeling. I no longer recognized myself when I looked in the mirror. I had become a shell of my former self. I tried again to be a better wife. I tried to make sure that everything was just as he wanted when he would return from his trips. But to no avail things would always be the same. Sure, there were moments of happiness. I would hang on to these moments. If you could believe it I still loved this man with all my heart and hoped when things were going well that this was the break I had prayed for. This was the thing that would turn us around. But something would always happen and again, I would always find myself crying and begging. I had become sad and pathetic to be around. Finally the day came for the birth of our first child. I will never forget it. I was not due for another 3 weeks but my water broke and I had to get to the hospital. My husband initially came but when the hospital attendants told him that they were going to try and stop the contractions. That it would still be too soon for me to deliver. He decided that he would wait it out on the golf course. He told them it was already scheduled and they could call him if anything changed. I remember the look on the nurse’s face. I remember the tears whelping up in my eyes. But I didn’t say a word. I just kept my mouth shut and closed my eyes and drifted off, zoning to escape the pain and sadness. Later I remember how they weren’t able to stop my contractions and that my husband only showed up right at the moment the baby was taken by c-section. I remember how he came up beside me and told me what a wonderful job I had done and how much he loved me and everything would be perfect from now on. I remember how I believed him and wanted that all to be true. However, that would not be. After the birth of my daughter it was discovered through a negative pap smear that I had stage 3 cancerous growths on my cervix. Of course we still didn’t have insurance and my husband told me to work the state system and apply for free health care. After all, I was a single mom and didn’t make anything. I reluctantly did everything asked of me. I felt humiliated and sad. I was put through 7 leap procedures, all done without him beside me. I was on my own. His excuse was that he didn’t deal well with any of this. I was scared and felt so alone. He was always away on a trip or golfing. During the last procedure, the doctor was unable to stop the bleeding. I had to be admitted to the hospital where tests were run. This is how I found out that I was pregnant with our second child. I almost collapsed when the nurse broke the news to me. At first I thought the baby was possibly hurt because of all the procedures that had been done. However, they did an ultrasound and confirmed that the baby was unharmed. Then I was overwhelmed with the thought of going through another pregnancy recalling all the difficulties I faced alone during my first. Of course my husband was thrilled. He told me that I was fulfilling all his wishes of family. I was happy to be blessed with another baby but felt sad at the same time. It is difficult to understand if you couldn’t put yourself in my shoes. Again, I faced all the same issues with his venting, his family, my insecurities and my sadness. Again, I went through another pregnancy alone without the support I felt I needed. After my second child was born my days were consumed with raising two small babies. I found such joy in our two daughters. I would try and submerge myself into being the best mom. However, the happiness was always short lived.
    Our business supposedly continued to fail; at least that is what my husband kept telling my family so not to give them a single penny. I endured ridicule from my husband’s family at what they viewed as my inabilities to contribute financially because they saw that I stayed home with my children and didn’t work. Again, I was told to keep quiet about the money that my family continued to give. My husband insisted that we always go to his family’s home during the holidays as if my family did not exist. I had to endure snide remarks and sometimes blow ups from his mother and sister during our visits. I endured my husband’s repeated infidelities that I was never able to concretely prove. I endured his venting that had escalated to suggestions he made of killing me, and that he would get away with it as no one would ever find my body. He often made jokes about Scott Peterson who was convicted of killing his pregnant wife. Her body was found in the ocean. He would often joke saying he was going to take me for a boat ride seeming to enjoy the rise he would get out of my reaction. I became so distraught. My husband of course would always apologize.
    Then suddenly, he would tell me that I and the kids were his world, and that everything he did was for us. He would write me beautiful cards and sometimes letters professing his love. I wanted to believe him but over time, I just felt numb to his words. I really tried hard to make our marriage work. However, I had no access to the business, the bank accounts or really anything. Whenever I wanted anything he would tell me that I needed to come to him with a list and why I needed anything. It was so humiliating. So I tried to get creative and find my own ways to make spending money on ebay. I successfully sold several items and soon had a small enterprising business. It wasn’t allot but with all the money I made I took the kids on many trips. Trips that he would never come on saying that he was busy with work. I even made enough to purchase a foreclosed timeshare that was close to our house that the kids I would use to go swimming at. I really tried to make things work. I thought maybe we could be happy.
    Then came the day that my father’s health rapidly deteriorated to lung cancer. Within 30 days he was moved to hospice. He called me to come. I remember asking my husband to care for our young daughters so I could go and be by my father’s side, he refused saying that he had an important golf game. So I loaded up the children and drove to where my father was 2 hours away. I will never forget seeing him for the last time, lying in that hospital bed; he was dying right before my eyes. He looked so frail and sad. He was holding all the bills in his hands that were due because of the business my husband had created. He was so concerned about what would happen to my mother. He was so afraid that my husband would simply walk away from all the debt that was created and leave my mother in financial ruin. I was filled with grief and yet couldn’t bring myself to say a word to him. I was so ashamed. I felt that this was my entire fault. I just kept silent and told him that I was going to get the kids situated with my mother and then I would be back. I called my husband crying. I told him we needed to make this right that we needed to take all this debt over. I asked him to come down and be by my side through this. My husband became enraged, he told me that I was just as responsible for the debt and that it was I who convinced my father to give us the money. He said that my father was a grown man and that he gave us that money without a gun held to his head and that if he didn’t have it to give he shouldn’t have given it in the first place. He then hung up the phone. I was crying once again. I never got a chance to say goodbye to my dad. He had a seizure right after I left. I returned to the hospital that night and lay in the bed next to him hearing his labored breathing until he took his last breath. I called my husband and told him that my father had passed away. I told him that I couldn’t deal with all this by myself that he needed to come down and help me. He refused telling me that he didn’t deal with these type of things well as his father died when he was young and just couldn’t be there as this was just too much for him to deal with. He left me with my children to deal with everything. He showed up the day of the funeral with a well written poem about my dad and proceeded to act as if he were grief struck. He managed to charm everyone. Everyone that is except my mother who was devastated. My husband did exactly as my father thought he would. He walked away from all the debt. After all, it was in my name and my father’s name. This of course ruined both my dad’s credit and my own. My mother continued to pay all the bills as long as she could. Eventually, she had to file for bankruptcy so that she wouldn’t lose her home. This cause a rift between my mother and myself for many years to come. The creditors continued to call and harass me. I found it very difficult to deal with. I became more and more depressed. I was told by my husband that we would simply change our phone number. That eventually the creditors would give up on me. He became angry with my concern and told me that I was being selfish. He said that I needed to get over my guilt and start being a better wife and mom or that he would leave. So I tried. For a short while it seemed we would again be alright.
    Since now my father had passed it didn’t take long for my husband put up both the business and our home for sale. He took all the money proceeds and said we were going to get a fresh start in another state. We moved to California, the state in which my husband grew up. That now we would be closer to his family. This time however, he purchased our home in his name only. He said now we couldn’t put my name on anything as now I had all these creditors after me. He assured me that one day when he had the money to fix my credit he would and then he would fix everything. Confused I asked him why we simply could not get married again now if he was able to put the home and cars into his name. If he could now do this he must have addressed his IRS issues. He became angry at my questions. He told me that he couldn’t put the assets in my name and that he was not yet completely cleared with his IRS issues. I was so confused. But what could I do? So again, I allowed this man to manipulate and control me. I went along with everything as he instructed me to do. He put the home, the cars in his name. However, he still put bank accounts, business names in my name. I watched as he masterfully forged my signature on all the checks written on the bank accounts to pay all the bills. He even bragged about how good he felt the signature looked. It was all too confusing to me but whenever I would question him he would become enraged and have a “venting” episode.
    You may be saying, “why didn’t I just leave?” If not at least for the sake of my children. I asked myself the same question time and time again. I felt hopeless and terrified. Besides, he seemed a perfect father and husband to everyone around. I will credit him as being a good father, he loves the children but he was not a good husband.
    Since my father had passed and my estrangement from my mother was taking a long toll, I felt I had no one, and nowhere to go. I tried repeatedly to reach out and find other moms to be friends with but he would always squash those friendships. So again I hoped and prayed and just tried harder to be a better wife, a better housekeeper, a model mother to our children. However, I never measured up for my husband.
    Sure we had intermittent moments of happiness. But when it was dark it was black and empty. My husband would tell me that he just didn’t find me attractive; he pointed out my loose skin on my stomach and even claimed that he didn’t have any desire to kiss me because he said I had bad breath. What little of my self esteem was left was now gone. I would look at myself in absolute disgust and wonder what happen to the strong, beautiful woman I once was. I tried to exercise while caring for the children. I tried dieting. I tried everything. I was just so sad and depressed. My husband said he was so sick of me.
    I was desperate. Finally, I convinced my husband to allow me a night a week to attend a belly dancing class through the city. He agreed that I could go as long as the dinner was done along with the house work and that the kids were bathed and in bed before I went. I happily agreed. I began attending the class. It was so nice to have adult conversation with other women. I enjoyed my moments to myself. One night while driving home my car broke down as it often did. I tried to call my husband to help me but of course as always had his phone turned off. I sat there in the dark not knowing what to do. Finally, a car stopped and a young man got out and offered his assistance. He helped me get the car started, I thanked him and I drove away. The next time I went to class I saw the same young man who had helped me with my car. He was playing basketball at the same place I was taking my class. He recognized me and said hi. I thanked him again and went to my class. After class that evening sure enough my car would not start, this time that young man was right there to help me again. This soon became a ritual which led to a friendship, which led to a brief affair. I didn’t plan this; I was just so sad and didn’t feel good about myself. This person made me feel worthy like I hadn’t felt in a long time. He thought I was beautiful and enjoyed having conversations with me. I felt happy but at the same time was overcome with tremendous guilt. I ended it as quickly as it began. I convinced myself that I would never tell my husband. But guilt had had the better of me and when he randomly probed me about something as he often would, I confessed everything. He responded by exploding and letting me know that he now would take everything from me. That I would never have our children that he owned our home, cars and that I needed to get out. He said I was a whore, and that he wanted me to now have nothing to do with our children or him. I tried to explain, but he said that I was dead to him. He told me to get out. I had nowhere to go. I realized I had nothing and that he was right, that everything was his and that I had no means or support to even fight him and that he would take our children and that there was nothing I could do. He told me that I needed to find someplace to go. He then left me in the front room and shut and locked the door to the hallway that led to our children’s room and ours. What had I done? I felt I no longer had a reason to live if I would be without my children. I went to the medicine cabinet and took a large dose of old pain killers I found. I just wanted to stop all the pain. I thought I would go to sleep. I was wrong. I remember waking up in an ambulance. The medics were pumping my stomach. It was an experience I would not wish on anyone. I remember being in the hospital room, my husband at my ear telling me to tell the police that it was an accident, that if I didn’t tell them this that they would put me away. I remember a nurse asking him to leave the room then asking me if he had hurt me and that I could tell her if he had. I was so scared. I simply told her everything as my husband had instructed me to. They released me from the hospital.
    When I returned home my husband told me that he would now stay with me only because I tried to kill myself. He became more and more distant and the venting grew increasingly worse. Now, whenever he became angry it was my infidelity was used against me. He would scream at me and say that he was never unfaithful and that he had to put up with me because we had these children together. I blamed myself for everything. I tried to make things up to him. I tried to be the best at everything. It was at this time that I found the church and found Jesus. I took our children to church as well and asked God to forgive me for my sins. My husband would rarely go with us, he always had one excuse or another and when I pressed he would then turn against me and say that I was the sinner and needed forgiveness for my sins not him. I prayed and tried harder to be a better person, harder than anyone could imagine. But you just can’t be all that.
    Once in a while my husband would be his charming self. He would tell me that everything would once again be alright; that he loved me and that would get through this. Sometimes it seemed like I was living with two different people. I wanted to believe this and would try and hope and pray. However, it would never be. The venting would always reappear. Now, at almost 40 years old I am still trying to hide the “venting” from my children. However, children always see the truth. My oldest came to me one day and said, Mommy, why do you let daddy make you cry? Why does daddy do that? I was horrified. This was the very thing that I thought I was hiding so well, and all along it was there for my daughters to see.
    I thought about leaving. But again, I knew I had no money, nowhere to go, no one to help me. Then the last thing that I ever expected to happen did. I found out that I was again pregnant. How could this be? I was told almost 10 years earlier that I couldn’t ever have any children again after all my cervical surgeries. I didn’t even have a period. But there I was thinking of leaving and now pregnant with our third child. I thought that somehow maybe this is what I was supposed to do. I thought maybe this was divine intervention. I thought maybe this is right where I am supposed to be. There has to be a reason. So I put on my happy face and told my husband that I was pregnant. He seemed happy and said that this would be our new beginning. I told him that I too wanted a new beginning and asked that he show me that he was committed and remarry me. That this marriage would help me overcome my insecurities by making me his wife after all; we had been living as man and wife all these years and now we’re going to have three kids together. But he refused. He said that he could not get past my infidelity, and said that if he ever decided to remarry me it would be on his terms. So I just lived on. For the sake of my children. We had a beautiful precious son.
    However, things never changed, they just got worse. The venting to me became a weekly thing. He made me wear my infidelity like a scarlet letter. I no longer knew who the woman was that looked back at me in the mirror. I just existed. I lived for the children and fleeting moments of happiness. My husband came home venting one day and I don’t know what was different but this time I stood up and said no more. I told him that if he was so unhappy that he should just leave. He told me that I was the one who would leave and reminded again as he had done so many years previous that he had everything and that I had nothing.
    I started calling attorney after attorney. I soon found out he was right. All of them told me that they had never heard of such a thing. That there was nothing they could do as we were already divorced. The only advice they gave was that I could take the children and get child support. So I went home and asked him to leave again. He refused, he told me if I wanted out to leave. He said that he would go nowhere and that the children belong to him.
    I tried to stay with him but I felt so empty, so sad. He agreed to let me get a part-time job. However, I was always expected to come home at a moments notice if he called. He made me miserable and always accused me of having an affair when I was working. So I looked at getting a place for the children and me. Again, I let him know that I would not stay with someone who would treat me this way. He told me I was crazy. He had already begun working on the children thoughts about possibly leaving with me. They were frightened and let me know that they did not want to leave their home to go anywhere with me. I had no money and now felt that the girls wouldn’t go with me. I thought of just taking my son and leaving but my husband talked to me and convinced me that it would be selfish and wrong to take my son away from his sisters and the security of his home. He told me that I was sick in the head and that the courts would see that soon enough. So I stayed and just kept my mouth shut and tried again to just be better. My husband continued to control me by making me spend any money I would earn on daycare for my son if I wanted to work. There was never much of anything left but what little I had left I planned trips together with my kids as my husband would never give me money to do anything. I started a small ebay business and again would spend all the money on adventures with my children. It was my escape. I thought that one day somehow I might be able to leave. Things never got better; I found it difficult to enjoy anything. My husband’s venting was a regular thing and he would continue to make comments about me disappearing on a boat ride or some other fateful demise. Of course he would always tell me he was joking. I never felt that he was joking. I often told people if anything ever happened to look under the house because he often commented that he could put me there without anyone noticing. I was so unhappy. I had thoughts of suicide. One day he came home venting and I just snapped. I decided I had to leave, I knew if I continued to stay that I would surely die. I told him I was leaving. He told me that he would not allow me to take the kids and that I should not inflict this on them. He told me that I was the one who was sick and needed to get help. So I sought help from a battered women’s shelter. They set me up with a counselor who tried to council the entire family. At first he agreed, I think out of shock and fear. But then he took the kids to his own counselor who he found through my church. I couldn’t believe it, the church that I had attended alone with our children. He somehow managed to turn even the place I found sanctuary against me. The counselor at the church determined that he was a fit parent and that the children didn’t need counseling. This was all determined without ever even speaking to me, the children’s mother? I was devastated to be given such news.
    He then told me that I needed to just get counseling on my own and not drag the family through this. I just wanted to die. So I then decided my only choice was to leave. I thought that I would get on my feet and be able to share time with the children. I was wrong. It didn’t take long before my daughters refused to come and see me on the weekends. They began to refuse to take my calls. My husband then limited my visits with my son to only every other weekend. He told me that was more than any court would give a mother who abandoned her children. My husband had filled my children’s heads and the heads of our entire neighborhood with the thought that I had abandoned him and the children. Even the few neighbors and friends who I know had witnessed him berating me turned against me. I had no one. So I just continued my counseling and tried to put the pieces of my life back together again. I would never be included in any of the kids school activities. When I would try and attend on my own, I was told that the girls did not want me there. I was devastated. I did manage to keep up with my sons school activities, he still wanted very much to be a part of his mothers life.
    All during this time my husband would tell me to come back. He said that he would now marry me. I was even more confused. How could I now marry this man who had devastated me in so many ways. I could no longer believe anything he said.
    I was just beginning to see a glimmer of the woman I once was and somehow I thought with time, I would be able to get my children back. So when he realized that I would not return he took all my things, pictures, memories even my wedding gown and destroyed everything. Almost 4 years have passed since I left. I feel so alone. Things have deteriorated to almost nill with my oldest daughter. She now displays anger issues that I am told am the cause of. I still have never stopped reaching out. You cannot imagine the pain of not having your children. Simple things such as the pain of missing the smell of your child’s hair and the sounds of laughter in your home.
    I pray to God everyday hoping that he will heal my guilt and pain and will open a window for a relationship with my children.
    I still try and have some type of relationship with my daughters however; they often use their father’s words now and have no memories of growing up with me. Things have soften slightly with my younger daughter. However, mostly the relationships I have now had with them is only phone calls when they need money or I should say demand money. My oldest always start out by saying that dad pays for everything and that I don’t pay child support. It pains me greatly; I stay silent and refrain from saying anything negative about my ex. I always just say, I didn’t leave you, I left your father. I tell them that maybe someday they will understand and forgive me. What else can I do?
    My son however, is now only eight and loves his mom. It is difficult to see him only every other weekend. I am missing out on so much. Without the means to fight my husband in court I must abide by his rules and allowance of time with my son. It is killing me to still feel afraid of my ex- husband. I often find myself arguing with him trying to defend myself and even now he still masterfully turns the tables and ends our conversation by telling me that he will not put up with my abusive tone and hangs up the phone. My ex-husband’s manipulation has never disappeared. He has manipulated me into giving and doing things for him saying that if I want to see the children I will. I have done things in order to keep the peace and because I still fear him and am intimidated by him. These things I have had to do have made me feel humiliated.
    They had continued over the years until recently. My ex-husband met someone. He was quick to call me and let me know that he had met a single mom who was a widow. I knew right away that she must have money or something that he wanted or needed. He even made a strange comment that “she didn’t move him” which I know means that he is not physically attracted to her. I have learned that she indeed is financially well off. No doubt the reason why he is now moving so quickly. He has boldly been taking our son for sleep over’s to her house and now is bringing her to his house as well. He even has taken her to the very timeshare that I purchased (he has been trying to force me to sign it over to him, because he and the kids had been using it over the years and he started paying the yearly maintenance fees the last few years. I haven’t yet) No doubt is telling her that the timeshare is his all the while painting a beautiful picture for her of a wonderful man who was left by his wife to raise their children alone. I feel sorry for her. I know nothing about her other than what he has shared. I am sure that he will gain access to her money, her home and most likely any connections to people he feels will better him in some way. I am sure he has already recognized her weakness and knows how to control and manipulate her. She will be his next victim. There is a part of me that feels relief. Is that wrong? But then there is a part that feels sorry for her. I hope she is smart enough to get a prenup. However, now things have become increasingly difficult for me. It is clear that he now plans on making her his wife. And now that he has discarded me for any use at all he plans on making her the new mother in our children’s life. He has repeatedly tried to upset me in regards to taking what little time I have with my son away for one reason or another. He has told me now when he takes business trips that it will be this woman that he will leave my son to care for. He now demands more and more money from me saying that I need to contribute to all the bills that he pays to raise our children. All along I have given whatever I could. But now since he is in a relationship he wants more. He tricked me into a divorce so that he could take our children, home, cars, bank accounts, everything. I had nothing but the shirt on my back when I left. I have still had to deal with the debt he left in my name.
    Just recently, I had to come to a settlement for a credit card bill that he took out in my name while we were together. When I called him on this he simply responded that if I hadn’t left he would have taken care of this. Over the years I managed to take a life insurance policy out for each of the children just in case anything ever happen to me. This is really all I have left to give, and that can only be accessed if I were to die. I often think now he is trying to drive me to the brink. He knows that the way to get to me is through the kids. If I were now out of the way he could start this new life with this new woman and he wouldn’t have to deal with any custody issues if I were gone.
    I am really in a tough place mentally. I have reached out to lawyers who tell me that without allot of money there is really nothing I can do. I am on my knees, just trying to find the strength to get through each day. I keep telling myself that this too shall pass. I have lost everything. If I now lose my time with my son I am afraid that I will simply give up. I often think it just might be easier if I weren’t alive anymore. Sad to say sometimes the only thing that stops me is the thought of leaving my kids, going to hell for killing myself and giving by husband the satisfaction of becoming a martyr if I were to die.
    So here I am. Broken, sad and still the shell of who I once was. I write you because I needed my voice to be heard. I guess in a way, I finally needed to be the one to vent. I hope you hear me and find compassion and can offer words of comfort and pray for me in my desperation. I have no one to turn to. I wish I could just find a way to deal with the pain? Can you ask God to help me? Please pray for me.

    brokenca

    July 26, 2010 at 10:15 pm

  22. Long story, very wonderful.

  23. I am so happy that I have finally realized what these grossly sick things are – there are so many of them!

    At least I can spot one immediately now – so much damage has been done to my life and finances by these freaks – what a waste.

    My fear is that I have become so disgusted with humanity as a result of these experiences that I am just sickened by everything now

    Sharon Fowler

    July 30, 2010 at 2:29 pm

  24. Hello my fellow gaslight victims;

    I wrote the post on 2/18/10 titled “Meet my Monster.” I am still going through a divorce though things are turning in my direction. I decided that I was not going to allow my Psychopathic husband to destroy my life. I am fighting back. I called my Congressman and was told to contact my State Senator and State Representative. I did just that and now the Senator of my State (Illinois) has given the issue to an Attorny in our capital in Springfield to address this problem. I told them everything and told them that there are “no laws” to protect an individual from psychological abuse like this and the Domestic Violence Act of 1986 only had provisions for persons that were physically injured. No where does it list psychological abuse or its effects on victims as crime. It is a means to file for divorce, but in a no fault State, what good is that? Everyone’s story is just like mine; the same symptoms the same characteristics……….. I know how you feel and I know how isolated you can become because to the outside world, what happened to us, only happens in a good thriller movie. It’s too unbelievable to “normal” people; it makes more sense to think that we are crazy than to believe that there are sociopaths out there that are very capable of “Gaslighting”, especially since the sociopath is such an excellent performer and actor; they suck a person mind but only do so after they’ve gotten pity from them whomever they are trying to manipulate. They are extremely crafted in their premeditated plots and ploys against us and usually we are unaware of what they have done or what they are doing until it’s too late.

    This here is a message to Brokenca…… you are not alone. You have not been the only victim of this type of abuse and unfortunately you won’t be the last. I would suggest, that as much as it hurts you; you need to move on with your life and love your children with a healthy love. Don’t alloow them to use you because they will then have no respect for you. I would tell them, I love you and when you are old enough one day I will explain to you why mommy had to leave; if they do not reciprocate to you; then you need to move on and know that one day your childrens memories will come back to them; when they get away from him, the brainwashing machine will turn off and they will begin to remember all that you did for them in reality, not just in some crap he made up and convinced them to beleive and then they will turn on him. I don’t know where you live, but in a lot of states there is such a thing as “common law marriage.” This is automatic when you have lived with the same person for a certain period of time; in the state of Illinois I beleive it is 7 years. That does give you rights. You did nothing wrong!!! The only thing you’re guilty of is being a person who hoped……. and they can certainly give you false hope.

    I was lucky that I kept a journal and did start calling the police about things turning up missing in my house with no explanation and it is helping me bacuse in the police reports they document his reaction or behavior to them being there and it’s always creepy………. I had a psychologist tell me that he believed what I was telling him, not because of anything I said, but because of all the evidence I had to support what I was saying; the turning point for the psychologist was when he read one of the police reports and noted that my husbands behavior in the police report was what a shrink would expect or see in a psychopath. It set off red flags to him! My ex to be knows that I am fighting back and I’m not affraid of him and I’m not his puppet anymore. I even took a lie detector test because he tried to tell me that I never seen a baby bassinet in my garage storage room when I see one… and I passed it’ well he took a lie detector test and passed, so that is proof to me that he’s a pathological liar. I wrote to my Congressman and I explained in a language that they would understand that this type of abuse is just like our now popular crime “Bullying.” I explained the only difference is that bullying a overt aggression and gaslighting is covert. I explained that a person never realizes what is happening to them until they have become so weak mentally and emotionally that they don’t even have the will to fight it and go into survival mode. I refuse to be his victim anymore; I have so much evidence, including e-mails that date back to 2006 that show his behavior in his responses to me; I have police reports that testify to not only what I experienced but what my neighbors witnessed going on in my house while I was away, or upstairs asleep. He would bring his lover to my home and tell me he wanted me to get some rest because I had been up with a newborn all night; so I did, and while I was asleep his lover would come to my “big” house and have sex with him while I was upstairs. I found out about it because one of my nosy neighbors came over to my hosue one day and made the comment that it was good that I had returned to work and stated that her husband had seen me leaving in the morning to go to work and Iknew I hadn’t been back to work since I gave birth. When I told her this, her face said it all. I todl her that I had been laid off my job, so then she said, “Oh, so you went back to work and then you got laid off?” I told her no, I had not returned to work at all. Again her face showed such shock and confusion. I knew then what he had been doing all those times he told me, “I’ll keep the baby down stairs tonight so you can get some rest.” He was doing this with my baby in the same room!! I got all that in a police report because when the officer came to take my statement I told him about what the neighbor had said and that I was suspicious so he went across the street and asked them and sure enough; they told him that they had seen a woman leaving my house in the morning around 7:00am and that the car leaving was not a car normally parked in my driveway. When I confronted my Psyhco about it and I told him “let’s go talk to the neighbors and get more detail since you don’t know anything about a mystery person coming to our house and leaving,” he refused. There are no words in the engish dictionary to describe what I felt when my suspicions were confirmed. But the good news is, I got their statement in a police report that supports what I had been saying all along. After the police officer had observed my husbands behavior after he arrived and I told him about the mind games, he compared my husband to Drew Peterson or Scott Peterson; and he told me I needed to find a way to get out for my own safety. My soon to be ex-husband totally disgusts me; he makes me physically ill. I told my Senator that the Domestic Laws need to change and that this could be added to the new Anti-Bullying Laws to provide protection for us legally and also that there needed to be a public awareness made of this little known evil so that other potential victims would know the signs to look for and get out before it destroyed them. I read a very sad story about a woman whom had suffered so much gaslighting by her cheating husband that she did finally commit suicide, but before she did so, she sent her friend 4-5 cassetes documenting what had happened to her and her friend received them the day she was buried. Her friend said that there was enough information about gaslighting on those cassettes to fill an entire library.
    There’s actually a play going on right now about the movie “Gaslight” in L.A. and the critics gave it high reviews and some of the statements made by them made me want to fight that much harder. These actors don’t seem to realize that they are portraying some ones “reality”, not a just a thriller show. I will continue to fight……. I will be as relentless as he is and I will get justice for what he did to me. I won’t be satisfied until my voice and my story have been heard. I suggest the rest of you do the same; the more people that come out and stop their silence and let their stories be heard, public awareness will begin. Do as I did, contact your congressman and explain that you have or were gaslighted and contact your State Senator and State Reperesentatives about laws that do not protect persons from this type of abuse which is akin to bullying with the same effects, just carrying a different cause. To Brokenca……….. I prayed for you today. sweetheart, you’re not alone; but you need to love yourself as much as you love your children. Forgive yourself for wahtever wrongs you may have done but dont’ take the responsibility for what “He” did. One of my counselors told me that the best way to get even with a sociopath is to live your life to the fullest and be happy. I have been doing this and my soon to be ex asked me one day if I was seeing someone because I was so strong now and so happy; I told him, “I’m not you,” I told him just the fact that he tells me I’m so strong and happy now is testimony to the fact that I wasn’t when I was with him and that he knew it. It’s killing him that I now have a job and a nice place to live and am making new friends and laughing again and enjoying life. Brokenac, don’t allow him to rob you anymore; and dont’ allow him to use your children to hurt you, one day they will come around. Start making plans for your future and make them happen. You “are” still that beautiful and strong person you once were a long tiem ago, she’s just been hiding, insecure, unsure of herself and in so much undeserved pain…… you have to start talking to yourself and tell yourself that this was not your fault and then start believing in yourself and your abilities again but more importantly, love yourself, be good to yourself and find a way to make a plan for your life and a plan for a future even if it’s only going to be you. I will keep you in my prayers. I plan to print the pages from this web site to give to my Senator to show him taht this isn’t just something that happened to me; and I think he will see the stories here are almost identical to mine regarding the abusers behavior. FIGHT BACK!!!! You can do it. You have rights and they were violated………… things change when people begin to demand to be heard!!!!!

    TS – in Chicago

    Tracey Santowski

    August 12, 2010 at 3:29 am

  25. Oh Boy. So this is what we call it. I have been gas-lighted for years by my second husband. I should have known from the start. I was getting divorced, had cash, a home, vehicles, etc., but was emotionally distraught cuz husband #1 had affair while I was pregnant and spent the whole newborn thing alone – really felt cheated by God and everyone that I was not able to have that experience of “happy family”. Anyway, in comes husband #2, a contractor, good looking, very “strong” very take charge. Long story short, strange clues began from the beginning. First, some woman called and said she was his fiance, he said that was BS. Then he moved his things into the upperlevel of my garage, an area I never went in to – expect I did one day, and WTF! Then when he was going to move in I inquired about if he was going to sell his home….”oh, I guess I never owned it – I thought I did, my uncle told me so…” (OK?) But do I stop, do I say see ya later. Of course not. I could go on and on, however there was a break in the torment, as he fell off the roof and required five steady years of care – which put me in caretaker role, which I apparently feed off of. However, then he is better, and then the other women surface – sexting, trips, bullshit. However, now we have no cash, house is mortgaged to the hilt, market crashes, all investments gone to sustain us during his illness/injury. Who the hell travels for pleasure when you are broke???? He did and still does. All I ever hear about is how sick he is, how injured yet he won’t get help, and now we have no insurance. Constant manipulation, constant clouding over, really creepy lies – like he won 24 million in med lawsuit, works with Kevin Costner, has cancer (he does not), and now people are coming to me to verify. Can’t tell if he is bipolar, sociopathic, psychotic, or just an ass. Thanks for reading. What a ride with this guy. BTW, yes I am still married to him. Why? Because I have been drained financially, emotionally, mentally, spiritually, and now I am re-building – and I will be better for it. I pray for all of you and myself and even the perpetrators, because good God they are ill. (Or are they? Maybe it is me? LOL)

    Joan

    September 19, 2010 at 6:35 pm

  26. Girls (and guys) don’t do what I did. After reading all about sociopaths on the net and books I met a guy who after a couple of dates I thought was a sociopath. Fascinated, and because I thought I had him pegged, I decided to just keep dating him a little longer thinking I won’t get caught up in his mind games. I did it for an experiment. DON’T TRY IT. Before I knew it was ensnared and it took me 18 months to escape. I’m still suffering the emotional scars.

    Rosebud

    September 27, 2010 at 9:03 am

  27. When did I become his enemy? Why did he treat me like i did not matter? why all the lies,cheating,abandonment and smiling in my face (at times) when i mentioned that i was in pain. YET I AM A SURVIVOR!

    The marriage began 4 years ago and it has been pure hell, a touch of heaven only in the eyes of our beautiful children. Yes there were some good times but those times were outweighed by the bad.

    I was definitely emotionally abused by the score. my husband played on my fear of being abandoned. he paid bills only if he wanted to and that was rare. he neglected to take care of our children financially and most of the time emotionally.

    soon after we were married (about a year) he would not come home some nights or he would come home at 4am. and he claimed that there was no one else. yet i called his phone once and she answered. i saw her business card. he even brought a TOY to the house and hid it(claiming that it belonged to a friend, me and the children we left in the home with no running water for about a week and soon after the electric was turned off. i had to stay in another part of town with my mother for about 4 weeks and take the bus with my 6 children to another part of town with no help and he never came to see us or to help with food, there were many times when he would not answer my phone calls.

    i really believe that i have been lied to at least a thousand times. i know that he is sick. you have to be a sick person to be deceitful as he is.

    i can not believe all the drama that i have PARTICIPATED in, yes i am accountable too!
    i will save that for another day.

    Lovingme

    October 4, 2010 at 5:22 am

  28. i was very young when i met my ex siciapath partner only 17 he was 33 i thought he was different little did i know how much he must of picked me out as his next victim control began within weeks havin me stand beside him as he shows me how to clean a bath properly and i remember listening and taking in his every word i caught him in bed with another young girl whilst we were in the same house i went crazy i was distraght he didnt say sorry no remorse nothing as i left the house he handed me £5 to get a taxi home the pain and hurt i felt that night was unbearable and i was to suffer that hurt and pain for the next 25 years. he took away my own mind and created his very own little one to replace mine cruel beyond belief .he played mind games 24/7 and i didnt even know it how could i he told me when to feel when to cry ,when to laugh, there was nothing working in my mind that was my own,we had 2 children together he didnt allow me to be a mum which has ripped me apart , theere was one thing he never took was my love for my children,he was bad to my son hitting him bullying and humiliating him in front of me my mind stood still not registering that something was wrong and my little girl who he professed to love and dote on was also all lies i later found out the beatens were nothing they dont really affect me its the reality of what he did to my mind and my childrens that will stay with me forever, sex was an extremely big thing in our relationship just sex no feeling or meaning behind, in the end i felt totally repulsed by him i would get intoxicated using alchohol which he would bring in so i would forget my inhibitions which he loved i .i have only been seperated for ten months .iam not free from him mentally and live in fear of his next move i still dont know who iam yet as iam dealing with my kids issues first .i know very soon the mental block will go and iam faced with the reality of what he actually done it goes way beyond comprehension.the last straw came when i found out while i was on sedating medication he was having sex with me that was it ,to take MY body and use it without my knowledge or consent and do what ever he wanted with just totally jolted me into some sort of reality, but heres the best bit the day after boxing day he got into an argument with my son i came into the room and the evil twisted sick old man i saw before me asked me to choose between him and my son he thought that he was some supreme being to actually think i would choose him over our son NEVER ,heres the good bit my son finslly stood up to him and gave him the beaten of his life .all that anger and hurt and total rejection came to a head. iam going away now to start on my journey and try with all my might to see it through til the end.

    chantelle

    November 11, 2010 at 11:58 pm

  29. My Gaslighter did all these things to me and more, he even managed to combine the ptactical element of gaslighting (ie coming into your home and moving things) to a new dimension which he would combine with the verbal gaslighting.
    He had keys to my home, I foolishly trusted him as he is my daughters Dad.
    For example one day I came home and the rotary washing line was lying down on the ground… I was confused but didnt waste too much time thinking about it. Nest time he comes up he tells me he did it and he wanted to see how long it would take me to put it back up (which I hadnt)
    I have a bit off a go at him and tell him thats childish but he somehow manages to turn it into a joke and in the end I end up laughing about it too.
    When he leaves I go to put it back up but its really tangled so next time I see him I ask him if he can help me untangle it as you really need two pairs of hands. Next thing is… what are you on about? why would I do that to your washing line? I never did that !
    Ive never read of this online about a gaslighter who will admit his pranks and then deny them after… has anyone else been through similar?

    Jo

    March 16, 2011 at 1:01 pm

  30. i complete understand how u all feel and going through. i been through those dark moments. i left that person. now i am trying to heal. (the only one u can trust is yourself.) even though all your friend do not even bother to defend u or believe u. i know it hurts a lot.
    Cut them out of ur life as well. or u will continue to lose urself !! or going to be crazy!! if others dont even care to standup for you? u must at least trust urself =u r not crazy at all. WALK AWAY.
    Leave the gaslighter!!! leave ur fake fren. so that u can gain ur strength back. U R NOT CRAZY> THEY DONT DESERVE you!

    whiteowl

    June 12, 2011 at 3:21 pm

  31. Wow~reading all of these stories- so much like my own- I really have little to add. My trust is at an all-time low, My belief in the goodness of humanity has gone to hell in a hand bag. The very thought of these psychos turns my stomach with such rage that I can hardly believe the things that go through my own mind in hopes of being witness to justice for them ALL. Today my daughter is expecting her first child. I had to leave the state I grew up in , leave my children, leave my family and friends just to escape the abuse. As he witnessed the box of books in my garage that I hadn’t sealed yet for moving he stated with pride “Wow, I really did a number on you didn’t I…?” then proceeded to try to get one more dig in on me to turn me against my family, make me fear they were against me and gloat that my children weren’t moving out of state with me. It’s been nearly 5 years and I’ve watched my Son become like his father, my daughter become and enabler like I was and my biggest fears loom on the horizon. My fear is that this cycle of madness will continue thru more generations when that gene pool desperately needs drained! If there were as much research done to help the victims of psychopaths as there is done to study the psychopaths , we might all find some justice in being able to move on successfully and fully confident in our mental faculties and judgement, leaving all traces of those parasites behind us. To all of you who have endured this morally -depraved, narcissistic, loss -of- frontal- lobe- development disguised as a human, my heart goes out to you. Would someone who has been a victim, overcome it, and has license to help, please publish a book on helping the VICTIMS and quit glorifying the perpetrators ?!?

    Tambo

    June 21, 2011 at 10:27 pm

  32. This site is a great resource…changed my life.

    The only thing these abusers are good for is bringing to light our own tendencies toward vulnerability.

    These people crave attention…IGNORE THEM!!!!

    http://www.bpdfamily.com/message_board/

    Pete

    June 24, 2011 at 2:51 am

  33. I have one too. Now I see him for what he is: crazy. He hides my belongings for weeks and then sneaks them back into a place I already looked and acts like I was too stupid to find it in the first place. He said it was there all the time. He breaks my stuff and pretends not to know what happened. He creates drama and chaos. He projects bad behavior of his on to me. I’m here 13 years and God willing I will find a better job and get away from him. He cheats, rubs my nose in it and then if I react, he accuses me of being insecure. He got all my money, but he won’t get my sanity or my soul. I never in my wildest dreams thought the charming man I fell in love with could turn out to be such an evil spirit.

    Gloria

    October 26, 2011 at 10:52 pm

  34. thank you all for your postings. my ex’s form of gaslighting was systematically withholding information and dropping the bomb at unexpected times. example one: on valentine’s day dinner, ex uncovers that a few weeks ago his friends suggested setting him up with who-else, but one of my former clients. my jaw dropped and i had an asthma attack in the restaurant. example two: currently in my finals week of grad school, ex says in phone convo the other night close to midnight, “oh, do you remember that woman with the two boys, she does, this and this and that.” all details very similar to what i am doing but more advanced. he did not disclose that this happened over two months ago, nor the physical greeting and parting that they exchanged. he rarely tells me who he meets during the day (unless it’s two months after the fact–) these are only two examples in about 500 now.
    did i forget to mention that my ex is non-committal and will not talk about living together or marriage. it was the control issue topic. being that i am in my late 40’s, i was hoping to marry and made this clear when we started seeing each other. basically, he has strung me along, with more and more of this gaslighting behavior at the most inappropriate times. after losing sleep twice in one week, and seriously contemplating hurting myself, i have decided that i cannot trust him anymore. when i have approached him about his behavior, he ALWAYS says, “oh,that’s not true. that’s not true.”

    Two and a half years of gaslighting combined with oogling other women. I did love him, and still do, but it’s become a life or death matter for me at this point. sure I’m lonely at times. But I started to hate myself for being jealous and also feeling that I wasn’t worth the commitment of marriage and a longterm relationship.
    I cannot do this anymore. He has got to go.

    meg

    December 11, 2011 at 3:26 am

  35. Gas lighted to the extreme now usin ” magic” to rape. Posted before please excuse typos. SOS!!! HELP. ANY ADVICE ANYONE. CAN’T SEE MY.WAY OUT. OF THIS ONE ALONE. HAVE TRIED
    LINDA

    Linda

    March 7, 2012 at 12:48 am

  36. I was in a relationship for the past five years…recently got out. He is a psychopath. I knew him from work for the past 12 years and everyone thinks he is such a great guy, but the way he is at work or in front of others is not the “real” him. He is charismatic, fun-going, and very fake. On our very first date, he came to my house afterward. We sat on my couch and watched TV. I fell asleep with my head on his lap and had a dream. It was a warning dream. In my dream, he was my enemy – him and two other men – and put me in a holding cell overnight. The next morning, he came and got me out and said, “Oh, did they hurt you?” and began laughing wickedly. I woke up and looked at him. I knew I had warning dreams, but my lack of confidence in myself would not let me adhere to my dream. That night he also told me – proudly – that he was a Mason. He waisted no time in throwing that out there. After he left, I was so skeptical. I began to research Masonry obsessively – what I found was not good – but still continued to date this man. He was so wonderful at first, but by the third or sixth month of dating, his true colors began to show, not to mention, I had problems with his ex-wife at first. She appeared crazy, but now I know she is not, and he drove her to it. She lived with him for over ten years, I believe. Anyway, I broke up with him many times during the relationship, but somehow always got sucked back in. I researched his personality and he displayed all the signs of a psychopath: charismatic, promiscuous, no deep emotions, compulsive liar, displays rage, and more. Gaslighting techniques are a huge part of how they destroy you. He would flirt in my face, have female phone numbers in his cell, and when I complained or said anything, he would say I HAD the problem… I was too jealous! He made up stories…lots of stories that would make you just crazy…have you believing the craziest stuff because you would reason “why” would he lie about that??? So many things happened that I can’t sit here and write them all down, but I do want to bring out one point in all of this, so it can make sense to you. First, there are wayyyyy more than 4% of the population that are psychopaths. Secondly, in my research and in my God-given gifts of discernment and visions and dreams, I have come to know that this is spiritual. Science calls it psychopathy, but it is deeper than that. It started in the Garden of Eden when God told the serpent that he would put enmity between his seed and the woman’s seed. The serpent being Satan and the Woman being God’s Kingdom – the wheat and the weeds. This people – if you can even call them that – these “things” are Satan’s seed (weeds) that were planted among God’s people. They are hollow inside. They are filled with demonic spirits and they are your enemy. In Revelation, it says that the Dragon – Satan again – was cast out of the heavens and has come down with great anger and because he could not destroy the Woman (God’s Kingdom – Jesus), he is going after the Woman’s seed (God’s children). You see there are only two classes of people in this whole world – Wheat and Weeds; God’s Children and Satan’s Children; Sheep and the Goats – all meaning the same thing. This is why psychologists say that psychopaths cannot be cured. They will never change, they are wired that way. They are born that way. They have no feelings; no real connection with people. They “mimic” people. Jesus will cut them down and throw them into the fire when He returns. It is all in the Bible. If you can remember that, it will be easier for you – having that understanding. Research it and read your Bible. Stay safe.

    Alley Cat

    March 11, 2012 at 3:05 pm

  37. a man set me up he sead i have to go thru pyco path web site to stop him and knock me out from be hind the others sead they put me in curupion and walked me in all naboer hood with sereal killers 5 places this enemys 17 years ago 1 the other is some other guy my frend had fite with getting revenge on 5 of my old frends he had um put in prison 20 years later i found um fast ther in the past he was trying to move me by killers and flage um dowen to kill me lot of times i cout um stunn gunn me if im not knocked they sey how did i know and keep doing thay 20 years ther very glade to help him 40 hr of atacts by him i did not move to cler mount wher the killer is he was going to flag dowen to kill me i thout i was going to get jacke riped off

    Dupre Turner

    May 26, 2012 at 2:26 pm

  38. What do you do when the psycho has somehow managed to acquire control over your kids (to the point where they have no memory of doing what is patently obvious they’ve done), not to mention rewritten history such that the roles of good parent and abusive parent have been completely reversed and Mr. Evil is somehow able to make them do things from afar whose only purpose is to mess my life up further?
    These kids are in their mid 20’s now, and I’ve been divorced from their father for nearly 18 yrs, although it really wasn’t till last year that I retardedly did the math and recognized the consistent pattern of purely malign sociopathy that’s characterized his every action all along.
    One thing I have to say to everyone else on this site wondering how they could possibly ever have been so naive (or dumb) as to have allowed things to progress to the brink of ruin, is this: You can’t blame yourself for not knowing such evil existed on such a mundane plane. If, like me, your experience and expectation of family life only consisted of love, goodness and generosity, why would you even look for evidence to the contrary in someone who professed to love you? Nevertheless, do yourself a favor and cut your losses: get the hell out and sever all ties as completely as as you would were you dealing with Ted Bundy.

    Calamity Jane

    June 10, 2012 at 8:37 pm

  39. Well, Calamity Jane’s story is so EXACTLY like mine that I wonder whether I wrote it and just don’t remember. If not, could you please write again with an update on how you’re doing and any tips ?

    Melanie Pahigian

    February 20, 2013 at 1:17 am

  40. These are all sick people, they are such convincing liars and all they do is mess up people’s lives. I think when they know you are better then them they do what they can to break you down. Keep a notebook and write down everything you do it will help keep you sane. Ignore all this people they are not worth your time. Never doubt yourself, you are not crazy!

    saj

    April 12, 2013 at 1:06 pm

  41. Just got out of a workplace where this was being done. I thought I was losing my mind, yet knew what I heard. They lied about things they did. I asked for it to stop. It ramped up. I guess leaving was the best alternative. Thankfully, my spouse is very supportive and went in and knew also that I was being lied to and manipulated. There is damage, but I am determined to heal.

    AM

    June 26, 2013 at 8:37 pm

  42. I will never trust another man again after being gas lighted by my ex husband. He had me thinking it is all my fault, I was worthless, I lost myself and couldn’t even trust my own perceptions. He is a very manipulative, and very charming man. Finding this is a condition, and it’s not me has been a god send for me. Hopefully I can find healing. Unfortunately for me, he makes my heart bleed with feeling sorry for him. He is a master at his craft.

    tonihubble@gmail.com

    September 3, 2013 at 4:10 am

  43. They are truly the ” wolf in sheep’s clothing”. Evil Spirits. Learn from this. Any man who immediately tells a tale of woe trying to make you feel sorry for him, RUN the other way as fast as you can. Once they can make you feel sorry for them, thay have you. You’re exactly the kind of woman they want, a compassionate nurturer who they can steamroll all over. I learned the hard way as well, but now I know what to look out for. I’m sending you a hug through this email. You’ll get through this. You’ll see.

    Gloria

    September 3, 2013 at 1:33 pm

  44. Dear Brokenca<
    I would like to first state that you have more power than you realize. The fact that you are still alive today is God revealing his miracle to you. And that you had the audacity to walk away displays a warrior in you no matter how long it took. I am so sorry that you were "buried alive." From what you have explained of what your ex-husband did to manipulate you and he was burying you alive by dumping all of his dirt on you.

    You have got to know that this world would not be better without you. From reading your post I have found strength in knowing I can walk away from the insidious terrorist who has terrorized me since I was 16 and I am now 29. As for your children they will evolve in understanding your plight and one day will grow to view you as a heroine. And if you don't show your girls anything else you teach them self love never gives what it does not have to give and that life was not given by any "man" hence he has no right to take it.

    I want you to know I love you and I believe God is going to bring you guidance and encompass you with truth.
    You hold on and stand when you have done all you can…. you just STAND!

    Iyana

    September 30, 2013 at 3:18 pm

  45. omg, I just realized that i have been in this situation. I am still in shock and trying to heal. After 10 years the circumstances became so wretched I had to finally kick him out. If I might indulge myself as this might be helpful to another woman, if you see any of these happening run before you lose yourself. It started with weird behavior and lies about stupid things. When i first noticed it was a phone call in the middle of the night from an ex, and no explanation. He said i was making too much of it and I agreed since we were only a year into it….but then over the course of time I began helping him get his life together. Helped him get his jobs and we both worked together as massage therapists. But he always had some drama, someone who was trying to screw him in life or a his job etc. it wasn’t me…not yet anyway. My fiends really didn’t like him that much, but put up with him. Another series of lies and omission began and he would do things like go out till late at night , not call then come home and not give any answers, then I would find he was out drinking with other women. Usually not sexual, but he would blur the line so that I would think something was going on. The other women, whom I might know, would often have no idea that he denied telling he was out with them. Thus making it very difficult to know who to trust and what to believe. Sometime the women even told me that they asked for him to ask me to come out also, but they had no idea he never asked me….just weird stuff.. that people wouldn’t need to lie about. over this time the be demeaning began, it started with little things, but eventually everything I did would cause him to react in anger. Even a car ride would become a road rage nightmare. if i drove, I drove wrong, every push on the gas peddle was to little, too much, or I was in the wrong gear, etc. anything at home would cause him to react in anger. I was always walking on eggshells. Trying to keep everything in order in the house and waiting on him for fear he might get upset with me. I had mentioned his behavior to him over the years but be would deny treating me badly and say he loved me….eventually he began drinking more heavily, then more often the demeaning behavior would surface in and at social interactions. Friends were appalled, once he called me a cunt in front of friends for no reason, it was the beginning of the real bad stuff that was to follow. He never paid his taxes for 5 years and he would ask for help, when I would offer help he would find a way not to accept it, and blame me for his taxes not being done….little things, I was a perfect enabler…finally after being told I was crazy wrong, unloving, undesirable and the like i decided to go to therapy….i wasn’t sure what the hell was going on with me. I wouldn’t go to functions socially, I felt worried that he would berate in front of people in the community. I did think something was really wrong with me and if I just could make him happy things would get better. After a night he came home very drunk and in a rage he ripped the security screen door off the hinges, then proceeded to blame me because the door was locked and he could not come in. That night I started video and audio taping scenes. I knew there something wrong with this, love should be like this. I wanted a connection to him but there was no way it could happen. He was emotionally devoid…the next big deal breaker happened a month ago. After waiting at home again, lonely and scared he came drunk and began another fight. His anger escalated and the woman whom he was out with was sending him unsavory messages on his phone. He blacked out and had no memory and then blamed me for angering him while he was drunk. He apologized the next day but i was so beat up and broken, plus too many people in our community began to ask questions and were concerned for my safety, I told him he had to leave. He went into a denial at first, then rage, and then avoidance, unable to talk about practical matters let alone the drinking etc. I went to Al Anon also….to get some support. Then he quickly moved in with the girl whom he had his little drinking tryst with. He seems to have no idea why I asked him to leave and is surprised by it…he has managed to blame me again. Now he has completely cut off with me. There was so much damage that i couldn’t believe this person I thought I knew and trusted for 10 years could have no feeling, shame, nothing no apology, it is the strangest thing I have ever seen. I feel like I was in a altered state for so long. I was a strong stable person, very independent since I was 18 now 47, the last two years have been like living in a war zone, I never knew where the bombs would hit or when. I never knew truth from fiction. I am finally starting to see that I didn’t create this alone…Thanks for listening to my story. i am hurt and confused but it will pass as long as I continue to seek support and care from myself. I know it will take some time. andI do not have anger for him. just pity and sadness. he has no real friends just acquaintances. this new woman has no idea what chi is in for. Good riddance to bad rubbish….Aloha from Maui Claudia

    Thyroid Fitness Coach

    October 20, 2013 at 12:55 am

  46. the pure Evil the are children of Satan Lucifer i am so destroyed and i can not get help she almost killed me ,but i have two children that i love so much with her and i cannot leave this city

    oliviero

    November 2, 2013 at 2:00 pm

  47. I feel as if I’ve been gaslighted just by reading these tales of woe. Like it or not, many of these respondents sound mentally-ill – even before they were ostensibly gaslighted.

    Jeff Huxton

    November 11, 2013 at 2:30 am

  48. Lovefraud.com. There you will find an excellent support group. men and women welcome. Also so much information on that site. I have educated myself immensely from the information that lovefraud.com provides.

    Marcy Elmore Littrell

    March 19, 2014 at 8:31 am

  49. Jeff…looking for narcissistic supply…pretty desperate…used up everyone else around you I guess..
    My thoughts on losers that prey on empathetic people…weak, cowardly, a waste of human skin

    Been There

    August 19, 2014 at 8:32 pm


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