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Thursday, April 16, 2015

8 Signs You Are Being Manipulated Emotionally And What To Do About It

Everyone wants to think that they’re the master of their own destiny, standing tall and strong and taking charge. The reality, though, is that we’re all subject to emotional manipulation by others in our lives. You might not even know when it’s happening. So here’s how you can tell if someone is manipulating you emotionally, and what you can do about it.




1. They Turn Your Statements Around

No matter what’s bothering you, they’ll turn it around and make it about them. As an example, you might tell an emotional manipulator that you’re really disappointed that they stood you up for a coffee date. Their response? “I’m so sorry that you thought I forgot about you. I’ve been under so much stress lately that it’s hard for me to remember where I have to be and when I have to be there. I should have forgotten all about the stress I’m under and focused on our coffee date.

Of course you get the idea – he or she isn’t really sorry. They’re just trying to make you feel bad for actually thinking that a date was a date, and that you mattered. If you think that your friend is playing that angle, then you don’t have to accept the apology. If you do, nothing is going to change.

2. They Don’t Really Want to Help You – But They Will

If you ask an emotional manipulator for a favor, they’ll agree to do it for you – along with a lot of sighing and whining. When you tell them that they don’t really have to help you move, arrange your furniture, pick you up at the hospital after your surgery, or whatever, they’ll heave out a long-suffering sigh and say, “No, I really want to help you. Even though it’s going to cause me untold aggravation and inconvenience. After all, what are friends for?”

This type of person can make you crazy. Don’t let them. Put it to them straight – “Listen, if you don’t want to, I’ll find someone else. Keep your hand-wringing to yourself.”

3. They Lie, and Say They Didn’t

This is one of the worst types of emotional manipulators. They say one thing, and then later on insist that it’s not what they said. This can actually leave you questioning your own sanity. Usually this is because they can’t say no, as in “No, I’m sorry, I can’t pick you up at the hospital – I’m just too busy.” Rather than admit that, they pretend they didn’t promise in the first place – “I said I’d pick you up if you couldn’t get anyone else; don’t you remember?” Of course you’re remembering correctly. They’re manipulating.

When you’re dealing with this type of person, clarify and confirm, and then clarify and confirm again.

4. They Guilt You

An emotional manipulator will never say outright what they want. They’ll just manipulate you into giving it to them. And then when you do what they want, they’ll insist that they never asked you to do anything.

Don’t fight their battles for them. Tell them that you’re sure they can handle things on their own, and then make them do it.


5. They Don’t Deliver

An emotional manipulator will never deal with you directly. They’ll talk behind your back, promise support, and then deliver nothing. You need a babysitter? The emotional manipulator will say “Sure, I can do that,” and then not show up.

With this type of person, you’re going to have to insist that whatever they’ve promised you, they’ll deliver. If they don’t, cut them off your friend list. You’ll never get what you need from them.

6. Whatever’s Wrong With You, It’s Worse for Them

If you have a tummy ache, they’re sure they have stomach cancer. You’re mourning the loss of a loved one? They attempted suicide when their cat died. You’re broke and don’t know where your next rent payment is going to come from? They’re living at the landfill with rats for neighbors. In short, it’s all about them.

Listen, this type of person is never going to care about you. They’re just going to be a constant emotional drain. You have to look after yourself, so the best thing you can do is get this type of person out of your life.

7. They Drain the Room

An emotional manipulator has the ability to just suck all the positive energy out of any room he or her occupies. They’re so horribly sad, they just can’t help but bring everyone else down.

You could be a kind person and try to help the manipulator. Find out what’s bothering him or her and try to help him or her fix it. Keep in mind, though, that if you can’t make it better for them, you’re going to have their toxic influence bringing you down for some time to come – you might even forget about your own needs.

8. They’re Not Accountable

Emotional manipulators never accept that they might be responsible for anything that’s wrong in their lives. They try to get close to you by telling you all about what other people have done to them. They want you to feel sorry for them, but really, they’re not all that vulnerable and ill-done-by. And once you help them work through one crisis, there will be another.

This type of person prevents you from looking after your own life, so if you can’t help them quickly and easily, it’s in your better interests to bail.

Can You Help an Emotional Manipulator?

Sometimes you can. But is it really your job? Emotionally manipulative relationships can drain you. So if you’re being brought down by an emotional manipulator, most of the time your better course of action is to simply get out of the relationship.

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