10 Things To Say To Someone Who Is Gaslighting You

Last updated by Katie M.

If you've ever experienced gaslighting, you'll know just how intense and confusing this form of abuse can be. Now, this type of mental harassment is so fierce and extreme that it could destroy absolutely anyone. However, that being said, despite these abusers being so gifted in the dark arts, that doesn't mean you are completely defenseless, because they too have their weaknesses. These folks may be good at twisting, manipulating, and distorting reality, which is why we need to be so armed and on our toes around them. To throw gaslighter off track, here's what to say.

10 Things To Say To Someone Who Is Gaslighting You

Gaslighting is a rampant form of emotional abuse and often leaves victims of it feeling lost, isolated, insecure, and confused by the actions against them. Although it can be easy to feel totally defenseless when you are up against such relentless torment from a friend, family member, or partner, there are ways to break the cycle of abuse. Breaking free from a toxic environment is never straightforward, yet the first step to putting a stop to the pattern is speaking up for yourself and letting the wrongdoer know that you aren't willing to accept their behavior and that you are definitely on to them.

>>> Discover 16 examples of gaslighting phrases

What to say to your abuser, as a victim of gaslighting

10 Ways to stand up for yourself, and put your abuser in his place...

1) 'I remember things differently'

Abusers often describe a starkly different version of events when running through things with their victims. In fact, they will do everything in their power to make you look like the villain in the situation and therefore place themselves as the victim. The truth is, people who gaslight typically have such huge egos that they will never accept the fact that they can do any wrong. However, standing up to them will certainly throw them off and may even force them to rethink their claims and reconsider the presentation of their actions. That being said, don't expect them to be remorseful for them...

2) 'I need to figure things out for myself'

This phrase will immediately instill a barrier between you and the person who is taking advantage of you. By creating boundaries and setting out the narrative that you need some time alone, you will guarantee yourself a form of protection from this form of malicious abuse. Plus, you'll also send a powerful message to your abuser that you are strong enough to walk away at any moment, and trust me, this will send shivers down his spine.

3) 'You're not hearing me'

We've all been there, you know when things get a little heated and arguments spin out of control, with both parties raising their voices in an attempt to ram through their points of view - whether it be in a romantic relationship, or with family members, it happens. However, a person gaslighting will take disagreements to the next level and simply refuse to listen to anyone else's opinion or needs. By highlighting that you are aware that they are intentionally ignoring you, you'll definitely let them know that you are on to them and their despicable tactics.

4) 'I need my own space'

Taking a step back from the situation and incidentally the relationship, you will prioritize your mental health and affirm yourself in the face of your abuser. In fact, these demonic personalities fear one thing, and one thing only, and that's losing their narcissistic supply, meaning they end up alone, with no one to torment.

5) 'I'm ending this conversation'

When it comes to belittling situations, it's super important to know when to walk away and cut contact. When we are worked up and faced with someone who is completely and utterly unwilling to listen to us, trying to get our point across is a total waste of time and effort. The healthiest idea, when faced with this situation, is to shut down the conversation, likewise, it's also a strong synonym for seizing the power and embracing control.

6) 'I get that you're angry, but so am I'

When the gaslighting becomes too intense, don't be afraid to stand up for yourself and put your feelings out there. Although you may not yell and show off immaturely as your abuser does, but that's not to say that your feelings don't count, because they certainly do! If you want to put your feelings out there as a method of cooling off, go for it!

7) 'This is my experience and these are my emotions'

Owning your emotions and therefore making them clear is a powerfully invigorating experience that will certainly intimidate your abuser. Likewise, it will really reinforce the idea that you no longer feel confused with regard to what has happened and that you stand by your own version of events, meaning you have nothing to be ashamed of.

8) 'Listen to how I feel'

That's right, you deserve to be heard and no one should have the authority to silence you, despite them making you feel small or weak. Speaking up for yourself is one of the most powerful things you can do when you are trapped in a toxic relationship.

9) 'I'm making this decision for myself'

Reinforcing the fact that you are strong enough to stand on your own two feet is the first step towards escaping the toxic grip of a gaslighting abuser. Remember, you can only be toyed with if you refuse to believe in yourself and your abilities.

10) 'I stand by my truth'

This is the ultimate sucker punch to abusive partners because it reaffirms that despite their gaslighting tactics, you can't be coerced into thinking a certain way and that you'll always recognize your own truths. No matter what they do, you are strong enough to defend yourself against their dishonest ways.

What makes a gaslighter angry?

When it comes to making a raging gaslighter see red, two techniques stand out from the crowd.

1) Strategy One: Point out the comprehension problems between you

This technique is particularly effective if you want to know how to annoy a gaslighter when they try to annoy you in public. For example, you are eating in the lunchroom at your workplace, surrounded by your colleagues. Everything is going well for you until your gaslighting coworker makes fun of you and belittles you in order to make themselves look good. In order to turn the situation to your advantage, point out to your audience that the bully has difficulty understanding what you say.

2) Second strategy: Ignorance

A gaslighter feeds on your energy, this is why they are called "energy vampires". To achieve their goals, they use every means at his disposal: flattering you, giving you affection, making you feel guilty, or even scaring or irritating you. They feel important when the attention of many people is focused on them. This is how they feel they exist.

They believe that you are inferior to them and that you owe them something. If you tend to feel guilty, you can quickly feel drained of energy in their presence. The best way to make them angry is not to do what they want you to do. Stop thinking about them as much as you can, either in a negative or positive way.

Editor's opinion - The hardest step is speaking up

Leaving a toxic relationship is never easy, but don't fret because there are many ways out. To get the ball rolling when it comes to breaking the cycle of abuse, you need to start recognizing your own value and therefore speaking up for yourself. Speaking out will be challenging, but it will be an important step in rebalancing the power and stepping back from the toxicity of the scenario.

🤗 Understand yourself, accept yourself, be happy... Let’s do it here and now!


Be sure to check out these articles too;

Article presented by Katie M.

Discover the world through my eyes.

Our most popular 'psychology' articles:

Split Personality

Are you familiar with dissociative personality disorder? You may well think of schizophrenia, yet the two conditions are different. What is dissociative personality disorder? We’ll explain all.

What Are The Weaknesses Of A Narcissist?

Each one of us has our own weaknesses that hold us back in life; be it at work or in relationships. However, on a more positive note, most of us have the will to work on them and transform them. That being said, once narcissists are brought into the picture, the idea that they want to work on their weaknesses doesn’t exactly seem feasible. For a deeper understanding of these narcissists and more insights into the workings of their minds, discover their weak spots and which pointers they struggle with on a daily basis, yet aren't willing to admit or work on.

Can A Narcissist Become Obsessed With Someone?

Now, narcissists are known for demonstrating a worrying lack of empathy along with deviously manipulative traits, oh, and before I forget to mention it, HUGE egos too. Yes, that’s right, they love spending hours looking in the mirror and being told how fabulous they are. To put it in other words, people with this personality disorder are firmly in love with themselves, to the point of being totally obsessed with their so-called perfection, but the question is, can they put their self-admiration aside enough to become preoccupied with someone else?

Are Narcissists Insecure?

There is no denying that narcissistic personalities display some deeply worrying and disturbing traits, but what if these devious traits were just a means of protection? What if they were in fact a complete facade, fabricated to keep people away, in the hope of hiding their deepest darkest insecurities? After all, everyone has weak spots, even the most confident and put together of people, so why wouldn’t a narcissist deal with the same niggling doubts as everyone else? It's time we got to the bottom of this and discovered why these folks are so insecure.

How Does A Narcissist React When They Can’t Control You?

You probably know by now that narcissists only ever look for one thing and one thing only; and that’s control! Whether in their personal or professional life, folks with this personality disorder need to be in the driving seat and the one calling the shots, otherwise all hell breaks loose. Although their cunning and manipulative nature means they are often hard to escape, it is still possible to turn the tables on them and take the upper hand. Yet, you’ll need a thick skin to do so because when they feel their power slipping away, they become even more dangerous and abusive; here’s how they react when that happens.

What Does A Narcissist Hate?

Narcissists are experts in the field of duping and manipulating their victims, yes, that’s right they are true chameleons, which explains why many of them often go undetected. Their behavior is definitely dangerous and means we definitely need to figure out what makes them tick and, in this particular case, what they hate. Understanding what these entitled personalities dislike is one of the keys to best exposing them and freeing their victims from their grip. Now, we all get angry for one reason or another, but people with this personality disorder have different triggers related to the things they despise.

How To Heal From The Pain Of Being Rejected

Whether it’s the breakdown of a relationship, a family dispute, or even being fired dismissal... We have all experienced the feeling of being rejected, excluded, or left out. Whilst some people manage to bounce back quite quickly, others suffer from it in a persistent way. As for me, I understood how to move on, because I was able to recognize my rejection wound. So, how can we overcome the fear of rejection and move on from it?


“He’s lying through his teeth!” You’re confronted with a mythomaniac in your close circle. You had no doubts about what they were saying and after conducting your own little investigation, you’re stunned! They’ve been leading you on since the beginning… They invented a life for themselves. But why? How do you recognize a liar, and how can you protect yourself? We’ll tell you everything.

Why We Feel So Socially Exhausted After Lockdown

“Are you coming to the party on Saturday?” After months of restrictions and several lockdowns, I must admit that I wasn’t expecting to hear this question. So I did a series of things, I had drinks with my girlfriends, I went to parties, lunches, etc. And without realizing it, I felt exhausted. Why do I feel like I've been running on empty since the end of lockdown?

More insights into our personalities:

6 Differences Between Being Self-Centered And Being A Narcissist

When it comes to mental health disorders, the parameters of each condition often seem blurry, and this explains why many of us have trouble identifying them. Plus, certain disorders frequently encompass similar symptoms and traits, making recognizing and therefore understanding them even more complicated. Let’s take being selfish and having a narcissistic personality disorder, for example. Because they overlap on such a huge scale, upon first glance, they do in fact seem indistinguishable to many of us. That being said, when you dig a little deeper, the differences do become more and more apparent.

6 Reasons Why Narcissists Never Apologize - They Hate Saying Sorry

I’ll be the first to admit that my stubbornness means I’m not exactly the most willing person when it comes to uttering the words ‘I’m sorry’, but I always push through my pride; although unfortunately, the same can’t be said for narcissists... Indeed, people who suffer from this personality disorder will simply never hold their hands up and accept responsibility for their actions, despite how deeply they’ve hurt your feelings. You know the idiom getting blood from a stone, right? Well, when it comes to apologies from these toxic personalities, nothing is more appropriate, and here are 6 reasons why!

Ergophobia: When The Fear Of Work Eats Away At You…

I know the real fear of work. I suffered from it for a long time, but I’m happy to say that today I’m cured. It’s an illness that can make others smile, as you can easily be seen as lazy. However, it’s not the case for people suffering from ergophobia, the fear of work. Where does this fear come from? How can it be treated? All will be explained.

I Have Fits Of Anger

Anyone who’s never felt anger can close this article! We’ve all felt this virulent emotion at one time or another 😡. It’s neither bad nor good, but it has the right to exist. It’s healthy to feel angry when you’re betrayed or a victim of an injustice. However, when anger attacks are recurrent, it’s good to learn how to control them. When anger hurts others or ourselves, it becomes a problem.

I’m Scared Of Failure

“I won’t manage it”, “I can’t do it”… I often say this because I doubt my abilities tremendously. Being so negative allows me to calm my fear of failure a bit. By doing nothing, I don’t run the risk of failing. I prefer to do nothing and remain in a state of waiting, for fear of not succeeding. So I procrastinate, thinking about the fact that I didn’t take the plunge out of anxiety. How can I overcome this fear to really start doing things?

Why I Hate Conflict And What I Need To Do To Face It

As soon as I feel tension build up with someone close to me, I take flight. I don’t like conflict, even if I don’t agree with the other person, I run from it. As a result, I keep it all inside of me, which can generate a lot of annoyance. Rather than this eating away at us from the inside, we need to learn to overcome this fear of conflict to make our voice heard. Why do we run away from conflict? How can we overcome this fear? Here are some explanations.

What Are The Signs That You Are Unhappy?

I sometimes feel bad, I don’t have the energy anymore… When we encounter financial, family, or other difficulties, as well as serious events such as bereavement, we accumulate psychological wounds. We can be resilient and move on, but we can also be overwhelmed by a growing sense of unease. There’s no shame in feeling bad psychologically, it happens to us all. However, spotting the signs of unhappiness enables us to be alert and to take care of our mental health.

8 Reasons Why Millennials Feel So Lost

If you ever find yourself watching the news or reading traditional journalism outlets, you’ll no doubt have picked up on the bad rep that millennials get. That’s right, we millennials (those of us who were born between 1981 – 1996) are often criticized for being ‘woke’, overly sensitive, entitled, and lazy. Now, isn’t that a bunch of adjectives you’d instantly like to forget! As you can probably tell, I don’t agree with the evaluation regarding our age group and am here to explain why we feel so lost and disconnected.

Why Do We Like Being Scared?

Making up ghost stories, talking about horrible legends, wanting to talk about spirits… I think we all did it when we were children. Even as adults, if we like watching horror films or documentaries about serial killers, it’s because we love scaring ourselves! 😱 However, the question we may ask ourselves is why we like being scared? There are neuropsychological and sociological reasons behind this attraction. All will be explained!

How To Get Rid Of Your Horrid Complexes

Legs too fat, lips too small, scars or even shyness, whether it’s physical or psychological, complexes often have the bad taste of spoiling our lives and making us unhappy. But we won’t let them do that to us! We’re worth more than that, right?

Wengood's favorite tunes 🎵

How to detect a narcissist

"Be yourself; everyone else is already taken." 

- Oscar Wilde