Gas lighting: Messin’ with your mind

Victims and Survivors of Psychopaths

 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 ofStalking:  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.

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