Even though it happens to everyone, emotional manipulation is not easy to spot.
This is an especially common problem when it comes to romantic relationships.
And even if you have your suspicions that your partner might be an emotional manipulator, this is not an easy thing to come to terms with.
Sometimes, these people are great in the beginning, but eventually, their mask comes off when they are sure that you have developed deep feelings for them.
The first thing you must do to shield yourself from manipulation is to learn how to recognize it.
Hence, if you believe that your partner might be emotionally manipulating you, here are 5 warning signs to help you be certain.
1. They downplay your problems
You’ve just had a nightmarish day, but your partner quickly brushes you off and turns the spotlight onto how much of a bad they’ve had. They might say they do this just to give you a perspective on your own issue at hand, but in truth, they just want all the attention, showing that they don’t really care about what you’re going through.
2. For some reason everything ends up being your fault
You go to your partner’s place feeling angry at them and then you end up being the one apologizing. They cannot accept responsibility for their actions, so they shift the blame on you. In the end, your guilt becomes their victory.
3. They know how to push your buttons
They know all your weak spots and don’t have a problem with pushing them. They know how to use this knowledge against you. If you feel bad about your weight, they criticize your diet choices; if you are worried about an upcoming presentation, they stress you out by talking about how judgemental and intimidating the attendees can be. Their knowledge of your weaknesses is immense, and they use it against you whenever they can.
4. You’re afraid to say “no” to them
Do you worry about defying your partner? It may sound like too much, but if you’re having issues with saying “no” to them, then it’s more than obvious who’s in charge of this relationship. Don’t let them be your boss. You are not a pet, you’re a human being – so stop letting them treat you like property.
5. Your partner makes fun of things that are hurtful to you
They might negatively comment on your appearance or work choice and then swiftly say they’re just kidding as soon as they see you getting upset. You might laugh a bit at your own expense, thinking that they mean no harm, but in reality, they do. Your partner may be resorting to these “jokes” in order to keep you on your toes or to try to signal that they want you to change anytime they try to make a joke about you.
In addition to keeping an open eye for these signs, don’t forget to trust your gut should something not feel right about the way you’re being treated.
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