Recognize a Manipulator

via Be Aware of These 8 Signs Of A Manipulator.

This image is for illustrative purposes only. The pictured individuals have no actual connection to the article contents. 

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BY KRIS LEE

While we all are manipulative to some degree, manipulators engage in set behaviors on a regular basis. Manipulators use deceptive and underhanded tactics by exploiting another person for power, control, and privileges at the other person’s expense. They play on your good intentions, vulnerabilities, and weaknesses to get what they want.  Don’t be surprised if a manipulator is someone you trust or even love.

When someone is clearly wronging or hurting you and you are the one feeling bad and apologizing for their wrong doings, you are being manipulated. Manipulative behaviors are learned, most often in childhood. Thus, unfortunately it’s something that can’t be quickly unlearned. So, watch out for some common signs to spot them and once you do, pull them out of your life immediately. They are toxic weeds in your life.

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1. They are experts in playing mind games.

Some manipulators are highly skilled and their tactics are so subtle that it can control you for a long time before you finally figure out what’s happening. Skilled manipulators have a way of twisting a previous conversation or replaying it to suit their needs. They will do something to hurt you and when you express how you feel about it, they’ll turn the situation around, make you feel guilty and end up justifying their actions.

Does your partner say or do things that make you feel like you must be crazy and then tell you you’re making something out of nothing?  Obviously your partner twists the truth or leaves out certain information to make you doubt your own perception and sanity.

ManipulateBullshit

2. They have their best interests in mind, not yours.

They twist your thoughts and actions bit by bit until you look to them for guidance on everything. They mold you into someone who serves their own purposes. Sadly, you trust them more than you trust yourself. Their motives are almost always self-serving, and they have little interests in how you feel or how their behaviors impact you and your life.

They consistently point out your shortcomings, then show you that with their help, you can do better and become better. In that way they convince you that they have your best interests in mind, but the truth is they don’t.

3. They are emotional bullies and control freaks.

Manipulators need to be in control, and the desire for control often masks underlying feelings of their own insecurity. They need to feel superior and powerful. They have a deep narcissistic desire to shift the focus somehow to themselves and seek you out to validate them.

Virtuous EvilManipulators claim that they know how the world should be, how you should act and of course by their rules. They are virtuous and righteous. They are saints in their own minds, so you’d better agree. They know what’s best for you. Just ask them and they will give you advice and will make your life miserable if you don’t do what they say or utterly worship them. Besides, they are great debaters, so you never win.

4. They are irresponsible and inconsistent.

Manipulators have difficulty accepting responsibility for their behavior and it is always about what everyone else had done to them. If you call them on their behaviors, they’ll find a way to turn it around to make you feel bad or guilty. Manipulators may say yes to a request or make a small commitment to you, and then when the time comes to follow through, they conveniently forget what they said or deny the fact that they even promised.

Salem-Witch-Hunt---Blame-is-the-name-of-the-game

5. They blame you for their behaviors.

They blame you for what they’ve said, done, not said or not done. If you point out how they just turned the tables, they’ll most likely make you look selfish and pitiful. Thus, you can’t really prove anything so it’s your bad memory against their lying words. You begin to question yourself and even feel bad that you challenged them. Manipulators will never admit their wrong-doings when it puts them at a disadvantage. Instead, they’re always on the lookout for someone to blame, and here, alas, it’s you.

yourfaultIlie

Manipulators are good at keeping score so that one day they will blame you if things don’t work for them. They are willing to help but it always comes at a price. They remind you of that one time they helped you out and use it as a way to manipulate you into feeling like you owe them something.

3d037-wolfinsheep6. They are wolves in sheep’s clothing.

They attempt to establish intimacy by sharing their deep personal information that they make you believe they trust you and in turn, you trust them. You may initially perceive them as very sensitive, emotionally open and a bit vulnerable. You won’t suspect at all that you are being played. Since they are able to mirror your needs and desires perfectly, they are able to create the persona or mask of who you think they are, but it’s all an illusion.

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Manipulators want to listen to what you have to say in order to find out your strengths and weaknesses. Although it may feel like genuine interest and that they are good listeners, keep in mind that there may be a hidden agenda behind all this interest. They won’t hesitate to use all of these against you with an arsenal of effective manipulation tactics.

7. They have no desire in having authentic real communication.

Once again when you call them out on their behavior, more than likely, you’ll get a defensive and angry reaction rather than being direct and forthright communication. They usually sidestep honest communication and use passive aggressive methods instead. They try to intimidate you with aggressive language, subtle threats or outright anger, especially when they see you are uncomfortable with confrontation.

SincerityIf you try to have an open and honest conversation about moments when you feel hurt or invalidated, you will be shut down with allegations that you are being too sensitive, insecure, or over-reacting. They may pretend to be sweet and open-minded to your face, and while they might not hurt you directly, they will find subtle ways of undermining or belittling you.

8. They are afraid of vulnerability.

Manipulators seldom express their needs, desires, or true feelings. They seek out the vulnerabilities in others in order to take advantage of them for their own benefits and deflect their true motives. They have no ability to love, empathy, guilt, remorse, or conscience. To them, life is merely a game of taking power and control and getting what they want. They see vulnerability as a weakness and staying invulnerable is a great way to hide who they really are. So, if you don’t live up to their so-called standards and they are filled with contempt for you, it’s so easy for them to simply get up and move on.

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“Ain’t it awful.”

group dynamics

It’s important to understand that people on the narcissistic spectrum simply do not tolerate criticism, difference of opinion, or when certain others don’t subordinate and show the reverence they feel entitled to. These personality disordered individuals can be bullies who aspire to positions of power and influence from where they can control others, penalize those they feel offended by, and use their thespian talents to attract admirers and supporters. Some members of this flock are eager to take action against anyone who annoys the central figure. With a coveted position in the inner circle as a contributing motivator, they see an opportunity to act out aggression with a show of ‘moral righteousness’ that will secure the leader’s approval and a rise in the group’s esteem.

Many human problems are difficult to address effectively without insights into group dynamics and the significant roles often played by the personality disordered. On their own, complaints about the values, policies, and behaviors of others, including statements about how they ‘should’ be or act, just don’t broaden our understanding, lead to change, or offer any viable method to improve the human condition.

Psychopath killerComment from: Defending Allies and Avoiding Hypocrisy | Atheist Revolution



Why Would Anyone Want to Control You?

ManipulationThe sociopath uses a number of tools to manipulate.

By Sarah Newman, MA

The need to control others may not make a lot of sense to you. If you’re a live-and-let-live person, you’d never want to control someone else. Even if you’re a perfectionist, you stay on your own case all day, not necessarily someone else’s.

But controllers are out there. They want to micromanage what you say, how you act, even what you think quietly in your own mind. It could be your boss, your spouse, or even your parent. You can’t be yourself around them. They insist on being your top priority and want undue influence over your life. They might push your buttons to get an emotional reaction out of you because they want to exploit it as weakness. They have no respect for you or your boundaries.

There are plenty of theories why someone would want to control you. One is that people who can’t control themselves turn to controlling others. This happens on an emotional level. A person full of insecurities has to exact a positive sense of self from other people because their self esteem is too low to do it for themselves.

Maybe people control because they are afraid of being abandoned. They don’t feel secure in their relationships and are often testing to see if they’re about to be betrayed. The paradox is that their behavior creates exactly what they fear the most… Continue reading: 

Why Anyone Would Want to Control You | World of Psychology.

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Published on PsychCentral.com.

Sarah Rae Newman is an Associate Editor at Psych Central and a science blogger. The author of several books, she received her MA in psychology from the New School for Social Research and an MFA in writing from CCNY.

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See also:


Manipulation—Read All About It!

Manipulation is a way to covertly influence someone with indirect, deceptive, or abusive tactics. Manipulation may seem benign or even friendly or flattering, as if the person has your highest concern in mind, but in reality it’s to achieve an ulterior motive.

Favorite weapons of manipulators are: guilt, complaining, comparing, lying, denying (including excuses and rationalizations), feigning ignorance, or innocence (the “Who me?” defense), blame, bribery, undermining, mind games, assumptions, “foot-in-the-door,” reversals, emotional blackmail, evasiveness, forgetting, fake concern, sympathy, apologies, flattery, and gifts and favors.

Darlene Lancer, JD, MFT
How to Spot Manipulation, whatiscodependency.com


Manipulation

eBook (PDF) 287 pages
Price: $3.89
Unlike people who are trying to influence others, manipulators work with unfair means to get what they want. They do not respect the personal rights of their victims. They work with hidden agendas and deliberately use dishonest tricks like faulty reasoning, coercion, blackmail, and lying as they attempt to assert control. Manipulation is about suiting the manipulator’s advantage or purpose only, often at the expense of others. 

It’s often difficult to recognize manipulation. After all, would we allow ourselves to be manipulated if we are aware that it is happening? This book explains the tricks manipulators use and teaches you how to best defend and protect yourself.

Manipulation: Handbook of Social and Psychological Manipulation
By Dean Amory
Available in PDF Format


People who suffer from low self-esteem are at risk of getting stuck in relationships where they’re being controlled; becoming the unwitting targets of individuals with personality disorders that propel them to behave in a manipulative way.

Manipulation: How to Recognize and Outwit Emotional Manipulation and Mind Control in Your Relationships
By Sarah Nielsen


Being manipulated is a highly stressful experience. It is unpleasant, demeaning, and disturbing.

Every time you comply, capitulate, cave in, or otherwise satisfy your manipulator’s wishes and purposes, you reinforce the toxic cycle that is compromising your self-esteem, co-opting your values, and corroding your emotional wiring.

This book was written for people who are targeted, exploited, and controlled by manipulators.

Who’s Pulling Your Strings? How to Break the Cycle of Manipulation and Regain Control of Your Life
by Harriet BraikerScreenshot 2015-06-14 16.38.56115 customer reviews
See also the author’s website: DiseaseToPlease.com


See also: Manipulation Tactics


But He Never Hit Me…

But he never hit me
When most people hear the word “abuse,” they naturally conjure up images of broken bones, black eyes, and bruises. But in truth, physical violence comprises the vast minority of abusive behaviors in any relationship. The overwhelming types of abuses are those that are difficult to recognize: verbal, emotional, psychological, financial, and spiritual. Because no outward signs of mistreatment exist, these types of abuses usually go unnoticed, especially by the woman experiencing them. In particular, abusive comments often lead a woman in any unhealthy relationship to distrust her own reality and good sense.

But He Never Hit Me: The Devastating Cost of Non-Physical Abuse to Girls and Women exposes the truth about these destructive behaviors and also reveals the red flags of a potentially abusive relationship. Women can explore their own background information to understand what led them to these men, the shocking costs that non-physically threatening relationships have on every part of their life, and ways in which they can make changes toward a more positive, healthy, and rewarding future. Imperative for women of all ages, from teens through senior citizens, But He Never Hit Me joins and aligns a large and supportive community of women dedicated to healthy, rewarding relationships.


Common Types of Manipulation

Dr George Simon [blog], author of several best-selling books on psychopathy, has given descriptive labels to three manipulative tactics that all victims of narcissistic/psychopathic abuse are sure to recognize. The terminology offered by Dr Simon makes it easier to make sense of behaviors that otherwise may seem confusing or even cause self-doubt, and to discuss them. When you see manipulative behavior, it will probably reflect one or more of these tactics.

Manipulation

See more blog posts relating to Dr. George Simon:


What abusers hope we never learn about trauma bonding

Why doesn’t she just leave? Here’s why.

Avalanche of the soul

Do you think you can’t leave your abusive partner? Do you feel hopeless when you return to a relationship filled with pain? Or, do you dwell on your toxic ex and struggle to stay away? Then you may be caught in a carefully crafted trauma bond – but you don’t need to be Houdini to escape.

Photo by Clearly Ambiguous Photo by Clearly Ambiguous

Traumatic bonding is a hit with abusers, because it helps him to maintain much-needed control. It helps him keep you where he wants you: tethered to him and his soul-destroying behaviour. But, the bond isn’t as iron-clad as he imagines. Here’s FIVE things he hopes you don’t know about traumatic-bonding, and how to shake off the shackles.

1. What is trauma bonding?

Traumatic-bonding is an intense attachment to your abuser. It happens when you feel emotionally and physically dependent upon a dominant partner – who dishes out abuse and rewards…

View original post 875 more words

Dr. George Simon explains how manipulation tactics work.

Notice that Dr. Simon has given descriptive names to common types of manipulation: offensive power tactics, responsibility avoidance behaviors, and tactics of impression management.


Common Types of Manipulation


Dealing with Manipulative People

Dr. George Simon, author of In Sheep’s Clothing—Understanding and Dealing with Manipulative People

“A manipulative person … is a covertly aggressive personality.”

“You ask a manipulator a direct question, you rarely get a direct answer.”

See more on Dr. George Simon and related blog posts:


Provocation Followed by Stonewalling

Provocation Followed by Stonewalling

See also:

When the sociopath stonewalls you
The Stonewaller
What is Stonewalling?

Stonewalling or The Silent Treatment
Sociopathic Stonewalling


Nasty People: How to Stop Being Hurt by Them Without Stooping to Their Level

Nasty PeopleNasty People

Read more excerpts…


Masters of Deception

Devil in DisguiseThe Gay Deception
Psychopaths and sociopaths are likely to appear friendly and generous. They are masters of deception, adept at faking emotions they don’t actually have—compassion, remorse, or humility—to win trust or gain power over others. Behind a convincing facade of respectability, intelligence, and high moral standards, they operate outside of standard ethical boundaries; recruiting lower-level psychopaths to do their bidding and manipulating normal, “good” people into accepting or supporting their shady agendas.



A Game of Destroying People

Psychopaths blame their victims for what happened
and consider the victims’ fates irrelevant.

games people play

The mocking and controlling behavior of the psychopathic mind is motivated by a sense of entitlement and a claim for submission. The submission brings them feelings of excitement and superiority. They enjoy what they consider to be a game of destroying people. It’s amusing to them.


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Don’t miss this excellent article:

A Game of Destroying People

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It amuses toxic people to see how much control they have over you.


Dealing with Resisters

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Psychopaths dominate because most people are brainwashed to be victims. There occasionally are people with partial resistance. They are isolated and the psychopaths can easily discredit and remove them.

Psychopathic Dominance

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psychopath If most members of a group are honest and intelligent, then evil people will be identified and excluded. When most members have psychopathic traits, the honest and intelligent people are identified and excluded! In a psychopath-controlled environment, it’s the honest people who seem defective and deviant.
psychopaths


Stonewalling a.k.a. “the silent treatment”

stonewalling
silent treatment

Abusers often use stonewalling as a tactic because it is a way to apply pressure that seemingly can’t be confronted because the abuser can claim that he is “not doing anything.”