Casual Unconscious Gaslighting Examples That Can Hurt A Partner

Unconscious gaslighting statements can be subtle and difficult to detect because they often come across as well-intentioned advice or casual conversation. Especially when it comes from a trusted friend, partner, or family member, it can be difficult to recognize that the words they’re saying are actually hurting you.

Knowing a few key phrases associated with gaslighting can help you identify when it’s happening, so you can take steps to protect yourself and the relationship.

An unintentional gaslighter may make the following statements:

    • “Everything will be fine.”
    • “You’re making a big deal out of nothing.”
    • “Calm down; it’s not that serious.”
    • “Don’t be so sensitive.”
  • “You’re overreacting.”
  • “It’s all in your head.”
  • “You have to learn to take a joke.”
  • “Maybe you should try not to think about it so much.”
  • “I never said that.”
  • “I did it for your own good.”
  • “You just don’t understand.”

It’s crucial to keep an eye out for these signs and phrases when someone is speaking to you or someone you know. By recognizing these behaviors, you can take control of the moment rather than letting your feelings of confusion take over.

How Does Gaslighting Impact People?

While someone may not use unintentional or unconscious gaslighting with malicious intent, it can still have harmful effects on the person being gaslit. It can lead to confusion and self-doubt and damage self-esteem over time.

Here are a few ways gaslighting can affect the other person:

  • Feeling invalidated and unheard
  • Having overwhelming feelings of confusion, anxiety, and depression
  • Experiencing difficulty believing in oneself or one’s abilities
  • Losing self-esteem and self-confidence
  • Feeling diminished trust in others and oneself

Since the person exhibiting this toxic behavior isn’t aware of these underlying causes (or may not know what gaslighting is), it can be hard for them to eliminate the pattern of gaslighting.

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