The things manipulators say dig deeply into your emotions. These statements cause you to doubt yourself and place more importance than you should on their words.
Manipulators are masters of deceit. It’s difficult to notice what they’re doing sometimes, as they’ve wrapped their cape of lies around you. You’re enmeshed, drawn into another reality, and begun to fall victim to their expert gaslighting maneuvers.
Now, you feel guilty, and you don’t know why.
So, what are the things manipulators say?
Manipulators say many things but rarely have healthy conversations with you. According to them, they are superior, victimized, and neglected all at the same time. And when they want something, they will stop at nothing to get it.
We can find manipulators in many personality types, so just calling them narcissists wouldn’t quite fit. But to the point, here are a few things manipulators will say to make you feel guilty. Pay close attention to these types of phrases so they cannot take advantage of you.
1. “I never said that.”
Manipulators use expert control techniques. One of those techniques is gaslighting. This behavior is a little difficult to explain, as it takes many forms and includes factors.
But basically, manipulators use gaslighting to make you second-guess things you’ve said or done. When they say things like, “I never said that”, they probably did. If the statement goes against their agenda, they will deny it.
2. “It was your idea, not mine.”
People who will easily manipulate you will never take responsibility for a bad idea or failure. It’s just not something they do. You see, the whole idea is to manipulate anything and anyone with the goal of always winning.
So, if they happen to make a plan to do something, and it turns out to be terrible, they will not take ownership of the idea. And it doesn’t have to be a big plan either, because it makes no difference.
3. “You’re lying.”
We all tell little white lies sometimes; you know those convenient fibs. But most of us want to be honest. You may strive to be as genuine as possible and even feel guilty when you’re not. The manipulator knows this too.
They know that you will get defensive if you’re called a liar. And when you are defensive, you are vulnerable. And from there, the manipulator can make you do just about anything out of guilt.
4. “You’re way too sensitive.”
The things manipulators say not only make you feel guilty, but they truly hurt. Saying that you’re too sensitive about a certain topic is saying that everyone should have the same sensitivities. They pick and choose which feelings you should or should not display, sometimes calling it drama.
But there is a difference between starting a real dramatic scene and having sensitivities. The manipulator knows this, but they use statements like this to, again, put you in a vulnerable place of guilt.
5. “You caused this.”
Talking about guilt, the manipulator couldn’t be more obvious when they blame you. Those who often use manipulation will do physically and mentally hurtful things, then turn around and say that you instigated the incident.
Yes, there is a cause and effect, but ultimately, you are responsible for your own actions, regardless. So, do not fool yourself by listening to what they say. Don’t let them guilt trip you. They thrive on watching you fall.
6. “Do you really want to hurt me?”
Did you read that in the pop singer Boy George’s voice? Well, maybe not all of you know who that is, or maybe you’re too young. Honestly, I’m not sure what Boy George meant by his lyrics, but in this case, these words are manipulative.
When a toxic person wants something from you and you say no, they will make it seem like your refusal hurts them. And refusals can hurt sometimes, as most of us usually want a “yes” answer. But in this case, the manipulator is causing guilt by playing the victim.
7. “I apologized. What else do you want?”
Okay, we can only say we’re sorry so many times and it becomes meaningless. However, manipulative people expect you to just take one apology with no effort to fix their mistakes.
Smart people see right through the flippant apologies. And when you start trying to communicate and understand why they did something hurtful, this is when they use the “I apologized already” excuse. Most of the time, manipulators just want to walk all over you and then hope you’ll forget about it.
8. “You’re causing a scene”
Here’s one of the other things manipulators say to make you feel guilty. They will instigate an argument in public, something so infuriating that you lash out. Sometimes they can make you so angry around people that you start shouting at them.
Listen, it’s true that people can be verbally abusive. But when someone is manipulating you to the point of making you lose your cool, you’re prone to strike out dramatically. There is a difference between verbal abuse and reaching a breaking point. I think you understand this.
9. “If you really loved me, you’d do it”
I absolutely hate this. This statement was used on me so many times that I cringe when I think about it. I was so naïve and usually just did what my toxic partner wanted, so he wouldn’t say this.
But here’s the truth: just because you care about someone doesn’t mean you must do everything that they ask of you. Sometimes it’s fine to say, “No” with no explanations. And it doesn’t mean you love them any less.
10. “You misunderstood what I said.”
Here’s another one to get the blood boiling. Have you ever listened to something ludicrous coming out of a friend’s mouth and then you got angry? Well, if that happened and your friend was a manipulative person, they probably backpedaled (said that you misunderstood what they were saying).
Manipulative humans will always keep the word “misunderstood” in their back pocket when they need to use it. Here’s what you should do: Call them out on what they said, and do not let them weasel out of it.
Why are the things manipulators say so frustrating?
It is so frustrating dealing with the things manipulators say because they take control of you. If you fail to be strong and hold tight to your self-worth, a manipulator will steal all your vitality and zest for life.
They have similar characteristics to an energy vampire. And you might say,
“Well, why not just stop dealing with them at all? Don’t talk to them. Ignore them.”
And that is an option. But it can be more complicated than that depending on the role the manipulator plays in a person’s life.
When manipulative people start playing their games, it’s distracting. It’s damaging, tiresome, and takes so much focus away from the important things in life.
While you’re busy trying to sort out someone’s fake hurt feelings, you could be doing something more productive. And for those who just cannot get away from them, sometimes walking away temporarily helps you stay calm. Just keep that in mind.
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