Is your relationship not working due to some manipulators in your life, but you don’t know how to avoid these kinds of people or manipulators? Just follow this article and get away from your all worries “how to manipulate a manipulator in a relationship”

Everyone has the potential to control others or to become a manipulator. Manipulation could be as simple as flirtatiously batting your eyes at someone. Unfortunately, some people develop into nasty, deceptive manipulators who use various forms of relationship manipulation. However, when your partner manipulates you, you could start to doubt your value and account for what happened.

Additionally, long-term, it may also harm your sense of insecurity and confidence. However, knowing whether someone is trying to manipulate you becomes crucial. How do you trick a con artist into a relationship? It may be controlled if you’ve ever been forced, watched, or even feel like you’re addressing yourself more than usual in a secure connection or casual meeting.

Furthermore, there are many completely different types of control, from a pushy salesman to a very abusive partner, and some behaviors are more accessible to spot than others. However, following today’s post, you can give the manipulator in your relationship a taste of their own medicine since we will discuss how to do this.

This article will cover what is manipulation, how to manipulate a manipulator in a relationship, and a relationship’s manipulation warning signs.

What is manipulation?

To gain power, control, rewards, and privileges at the victim’s expense, psychological manipulation is the practice of exerting undue influence by mental distorting and emotional exploitation. At its core, manipulation is a fear-based reaction employed when people don’t trust themselves and feel the need to control the behavior of those around them to cope.

When someone manipulates others, they are a story they have written themselves. When a manipulative individual wants to control another person and uses dishonest or exploitative tactics, they engage in emotional manipulation. An emotional manipulator seeks to use, manipulate, or even victimize someone else, unlike persons in healthy relationships, which show reciprocity and cooperation.

  • Emotionally healthy people won’t advise you on whom to talk to, whom to follow online, or whom to believe. Your sovereignty and boundaries are respected.
  • Emotionally stable people will always respect your reality or viewpoint and won’t assert that they are infallible authorities. They’ll acknowledge that you are the best expert you can be.
  • A secure person divulges her past or other sensitive information you have disclosed to others.

Start by becoming aware of when a manipulator is in control of you

Consequently, you must first learn to recognize when a manipulative person is at work in your relationship.

1. Whenever you are stressed, compelled, or guilty

Three components make up manipulative behaviors: obligation, guilt, and worry. When someone manipulates you, they may be mentally pressuring you into doing something you probably don’t want to do.

Additionally, bully and victim manipulators are the two different categories of manipulators. A bully instills fear in you and may exert control over you through hostility, threats, and intimidation. To attain their purpose, suffering creates shame in others. According to Stone, “the victim typically acts hurt.” However, because it is more convenient for them, manipulators frequently play the victim.

Typically, a person who is the target of a manipulator who plays the victim tries to help the manipulator to alleviate their feelings of guilt. However, marks of this kind of manipulation frequently feel responsible for supporting the victim by taking all reasonable measures to avoid feeling guilty.

2. When you frequently question yourself

Gaslighting is the term for manipulation that leads victims to question their reality, memories, or thoughts. Furthermore, stines claims that a manipulative person may twist your words to make it about them, take over the conversation, or make you feel bad even if you are not sure you did anything wrong.

Therefore, when someone is gaslighting you, you could feel falsely guilty or defensive, as though you’ve failed miserably or must have done something wrong when, in reality, you haven’t.

How to manipulate a manipulator in a relationship?

The first step in identifying manipulation is to watch and name the behavior. It will be difficult to disregard your skepticism because skilled manipulators thrive on confusion. However, consider these instances of manipulation and be willing to accept them if that’s how you’ve been treated. Thus, there is no shame, and taking this action is brave. Following are points,

  1. Blaming language
  2. Blackmail
  3. Repackage the truth
  4. Gaslighting
  5. Passive-aggressive
  6. Threats of separation
  7. Constant drama
  8. Pretending confusion
  9. Using anger and intimidation
  10. Vague boundaries
  11. Play the victim
  12. Overcompensate with flattery
  13. Impose their agenda
  14. Changing opinions
  15. Guilt trip
  16. Claim ignorance
  17. Focus on your insecurities
  18. Overreaction over petty fights
  19. Judge and criticize
  20. Overwhelming attention
  21. Changing criteria
  22. Physical intimidation and control
  23. Gifts to buy you back
  24. Pitch others against you
  25. Emotional outbursts

1. Blaming language

Every instance of manipulation in a relationship directs the thoughts and actions of the target. Language continues to be one of the most effective methods to plant the seeds of doubt, regardless of the purpose.

When someone accuses them of not being their ideal selves, they pause and reflect because blame is personal. Thus, at that point, you begin to doubt yourself and wonder if your partner is to blame.

However, Imagine being subjected to words like, “You’re overreacting,” “You’re imagining things,” and “You wouldn’t question me if you loved me” all day long. Any reasonable individual would start to give in and comply with the speaker’s demands.

2. Blackmail

Another crucial type of deception in relationships is emotional blackmail. To achieve their goals, people use sarcasm or silent treatment. Moreover, they might even agree to perform a task you intend to use as a negotiating chip later.

In her book “Emotional Blackmail,” psychotherapist Susan Forward defined FOG: Fear, Obligation, and Guilt. In essence, blackmailers want something from you and will use your feelings to pressure you to cave. However these manipulation techniques may be subtle, but they are unquestionably on the list of signs of manipulation in relationships.

3. Repackage the truth

One of the most blatant signs of manipulation in a relationship is when someone twists the facts or omits specific details. Moreover, as you listen to your manipulator and understand that their reality makes them appear so much better, you’ll find yourself almost performing a double take.

Therefore, the worst-case scenario is when you start disputing their accuracy and presenting counter arguments. However, they might then exert all of their manipulative communication power. It can soon turn gory, intimate, and disgusting.

4. Gaslighting

This scenario is comparable to repackaging the truth, except that gaslighting causes you to lose yourself and your capacity to distinguish between what is true and what isn’t. Moreover, you start to think you’re crazy.

Furthermore, There are several methods to trick someone into believing they’re crazy, according to research on gaslighting. These include downplaying occurrences, shifting the subject, blaming shortcomings, and withholding information. However, these are all situations where It may manipulate relationships.

5. Passive-aggressive

When someone fails to express their true feelings, it can be annoying and constitutes a form of manipulation in relationships. However, the other option is that they’ll remain mute and give you a blank stare, leaving you to infer what’s wrong.

Furthermore, other passive-aggressive examples of manipulative language include gritting teeth while stating “I’m alright” or expressing “thank you” in response to criticism. In essence, that individual is experiencing bad feelings that they cannot communicate directly.

6. Threats of separation

According to the study, we experience fear because we cannot foretell what might occur. Fear is constantly boiling up in the back of your mind, making this a potent tool for subtle manipulation techniques.

Therefore, you might not initially believe it when your partner threatens to leave you or take the children or the house. However, it starts to appear in your dreams, your anxiety increases, and you start to exhibit manipulative behaviors.

7. Constant drama

Drama is typically the focus of manipulation in relationships. As a result, you may find that your partner has general opinions or preconceptions about you. For instance, “no one does it like you,” or “you’re the only one who knows how to accomplish this.”

Additionally, threatening you with suicide is the worst form of manipulation. The worst aspect is that you need to figure it out, which makes it often just another strategy. However, you must also take care of yourself. It is, therefore, acceptable to contact a professional in those situations, such as the local suicide hotline.

8. Pretending confusion

Denial and pretended confusion are frequent forms of manipulation in romantic relationships. For instance, your partner can act as though they don’t comprehend what you want to be done. Alternatively, someone might sin to avoid pitching in around the house.

A typical illustration would be to put dishes in the dishwasher that would get in the way of the rotating blades.

9. Using anger and intimidation

The most effective method for influencing and managing others is through their emotions. Most people want to believe that they make judgments based on logic and reason. But we also require feelings. In addition, a lot of us aren’t taught how to control our emotions, making us vulnerable.

Additionally, this study demonstrates that despite not experiencing emotions, psychopaths comprehend the power of emotions to persuade people to act in a certain way. Because they force us to pause and freeze, anger and intimidation are excellent instances of manipulation in interpersonal interactions. However, we want to take every precaution possible to keep ourselves safe. The manipulator therefore prevails.

10. Vague boundaries

The blurring of all borders is another critical indicator of manipulation. To maximize their advantage, manipulators prefer to have as many options as possible. Therefore, with set boundaries, they are unable to do that.

Furthermore, as opposed to this, they are very good at adjusting to situations to get the most out of everyone around them, not just their love partner. However, this furthers your perplexity since you keep hearing them advocate radically different viewpoints.

11. Play the victim

Furthermore, examples of manipulation in interpersonal interactions center on power. What better means of achieving it than through appealing to empathy? You’re more likely to obey someone you feel sorry for. Yes, they are making use of your good character against you.

Furthermore, it isn’t unexpected because the finest manipulators are narcissists and psychopaths, neither of which can experience empathy. However, they still have enough knowledge of how people behave to take advantage of you.

12. Overcompensate with flattery

Whatever forms of emotional manipulation you’re dealing with in relationships, they’ll wear you down. You may receive criticism one day and compliments the next. Once more, skilled manipulators have a knack for changing how they act.

Interestingly, because it also encompasses their problems and fears, you can’t always tell what makes someone hot or cold. Sadly, manipulators sometimes employ these strategies to mask their shortcomings or a desire for something, frequently power.

13. Impose their agenda

As was already established, examples of manipulation in relationships often have a vital power component. As a result, you’ll notice that they insert certain subjects into talks. Additionally, they will only pay attention if it’s a topic they want to discuss.

Furthermore, the primary motivation behind various types of relationship manipulation is demonstrating that they are more knowledgeable than everyone else. Therefore, manipulators will pay any price to achieve superiority.

14. Changing opinions

Being a frequent change-of-minder is one of the perplexing characteristics of emotional manipulators in relationships. Therefore, it is due to their efforts to maximize their gains in light of the circumstances, as was already established.

Additionally, you never know where your spouse stands, so their shifting viewpoints can significantly impact you. However, as you attempt to steer clear of other instances of relationship manipulation, you’ll find yourself walking on eggshells.

15. Guilt trip

No matter what types of emotional manipulation you are experiencing, you will eventually feel bad. Ultimately, you begin to question yourself and wonder if you are the root of all these problems.

Additionally, the best manipulators will use your guilt as a tool to further exploit you. It’s a different type of gaslighting because you begin to feel guilty for something you didn’t do. However, the manipulator then knows they have you by the time you try to alter your behavior.

16. Claim ignorance

The victim typically finds that manipulative communication style annoying because it makes the manipulator appear foolish. However, your emotional health will scream for help if you add all the uncertainty and suffering.

Generally speaking, the main objective is to avoid fulfilling any needs or desires. It might also be a cover for refusing to assist with the kids or around the house. Therefore, it is an example of relationship manipulation, where the goal is to frustrate you into doing what the manipulator wants.

17. Focus on your insecurities

Relationship emotional manipulators are skilled at turning your doubts against you. Because of this, they’ll tell you that you’re never there for them when you worry you’re not good enough in the relationship.

Additionally, you give in to their requests because you don’t feel good about yourself and want to. It is only one instance of relationship manipulation, and if you continue to put other people’s wants before your own, you’ll start to feel worse.

18. Overreaction over petty fights

Picking conflicts with you over trivial issues is another illustration of emotional manipulation. Moreover, the severity of the problems and the overreaction that results make you feel guilty and hemmed in. It may persuade you that you are the root of great turmoil.

Additionally, these instances of manipulative behavior are intended to draw attention away from you and your alleged errors. However, you can feel guilty and under confident, which the manipulator can use to their advantage.

19. Judge and criticize

One of the typical types of manipulation is derogatory or harmful language. The manipulator can then humiliate and defeat or put you on the defensive. However, it can occasionally be accomplished through sarcasm or pretended comedy.

Furthermore,  in either case, it hurts, and your self-esteem suffers. If this type of abuse persists, you might begin to mistrust yourself so much that you isolate yourself from friends and family. You fall into a cycle of loneliness and self-doubt.

20. Overwhelming attention

When someone lavishes you with attention, that is a confusing example of manipulation in a relationship. Additionally, it will be perceived as love, for instance, when someone shows concern, helps you in some other manner, or does something around the house. Therefore, giving you excessive attention is possible at any relationship stage, but it can be particularly distressing at the beginning.

However, as you progress through the dating stages more quickly than you would want, you find yourself caught up in a whirlwind. Suddenly, decisions are made for you, and you feel you have to repay them.

21. Changing criteria

Manipulators are skilled at changing their perspectives and ambitions to fit the circumstances. This logical error is a trick that sociopaths and narcissists frequently employ. Therefore, they raise their standards for you, making you feel like you can never measure up.

Moreover, the main objective is to feel better about themselves by appearing superior. Thus, without regard for others, they require someone to fulfill their needs and fill the void. Of course, they won’t see how much work you put in and will keep expecting more until you’re exhausted.

22. Physical intimidation and control

The majority of the instances mentioned above of relationship manipulation involve language. Not to mention physical violence or using your body to scare and control you. However, this heightens your anxiety, and since you’re trying to keep yourself safe physically, you’re more inclined to give in.

Furthermore, all examples of manipulative behavior center on power but involve avoiding accountability. As a result, manipulators find themselves trapped in an illogical dichotomy where they want to dominate you yet don’t want to be held accountable for anything.

Controlling you gives them the idea that you are amazed by them, which minimizes their dread of being abandoned. Additionally, they define your seen reality by confusing you, which gives them a false sense of security in a continuously shifting environment.

23. Gifts to buy you back

Bribery is one of the easier-to-spot instances of relationship manipulation. Imagine being reprimanded and criticized just before your partner goes out and buys you some flowers. Although the apologies could appear sincere, it is only a bribe meant to regain control over you.

Of course, if this is a one-time occurrence, you may be dealing with a specific trigger that irritated your partner. However, you can discuss it together and determine what you both need from each other in a solid and stable relationship.

24. Pitch others against you

When your relatives and friends start supporting your manipulator, this is an agonizing illustration of manipulation in a relationship. Additionally, they frequently have friendly personalities and are skilled storytellers, so many of us fall for them.

Because they are so skilled at it, narcissists frequently start believing their lies. Additionally, they maintain the spotlight by winning over friends and relatives. However, narcissists will flatter and lie to acquire the love and attention they desperately seek.

25. Emotional outbursts

The goal of manipulators is to have their little world. Tragically, they never acquired the skills necessary to control their emotions and go through life in a way acceptable to the people around them. However, tantrums can be triggered by uncontrollable emotions in anyone, not just kids.

Additionally, you might notice more agitation, faster pacing, or aggressive movements in adults having tantrums. You don’t want to become involved when this occurs, so keep your distance and leave quietly to protect yourself.

A relationship’s manipulation warning signs

Several warning indicators to watch out for could point to manipulation in your relationship.

  • You endeavor to ignore your gut
  • Do you think it’s you?
  • You feel bad
  • Your idea of who you are is hazy
  • You tread carefully
  • You start to worry about your mental health

You endeavor to ignore your gut

The first warning sign can be a gut sensation that something is wrong or a pattern of doing things you don’t want to do. Therefore, you might convince yourself that everything is okay by ignoring this emotion.

Additionally, when you suspect that you may be the victim of manipulation, the advice to “trust your instinct” is constructive. Say, for instance, that you’re annoyed because it looks like your date is constantly talking on their phone. However, they quickly become furious when you bring it up with them.

Furthermore, the topic shifts to how you appear to have spoiled your date by starting a fight. You, therefore, abandon your intended message in favor of trying to appease it. Your companion continues to check their phone in the interim. However, you ask yourself, “What just happened?” but dismiss it since you don’t want to start a rift.

Do you think it’s you?

If you’re beginning to question your abilities and motivations, you might be the victim of a manipulation scheme. Maybe you used to feel confident that you could handle a particular circumstance, but now you’re starting to doubt your abilities. However, you might wonder if you’re “the problem” in the marriage.

For instance, you can try expressing your concerns to your partner about their excessive smartphone use. But they claim that you do it too and are constantly looking for an excuse to fight.

Additionally, although you don’t believe this to be the truth, after hearing this argument three times, you start to question whether the issue is that you are having trouble letting go of the little things. However, you may just “relax” and take it in the evening.

You feel bad

Additionally, if you’ve started to feel bad or embarrassed about how you’ve been acting in the relationship, that could indicate that someone is trying to control your emotions. For instance, you might work two jobs and scarcely have time for yourself. Therefore, your first day off in weeks arrives, and you choose to stay in your pajamas and watch TV at home.

Additionally, your mother appears angry when you tell her this. She tells you she can’t believe you aren’t coming to visit her on your day off when you ask her what’s wrong. Hence, you start to feel so bad that you spend the rest of the day helping her around her house.

Furthermore, even though there are many different reasons why this situation can play out this way, it’s a warning sign if you frequently feel guilty for not talking or acting as you would like. When you try to set boundaries, the manipulator disapproves of something you say or do. Therefore, eventually, you give in to appease the other person and absolve yourself of your guilt.

Your idea of who you are is hazy

It is a standard indicator of manipulation in partnerships when you lose your sense of self after succumbing to someone else’s overt or subtle demands that you give up your opinions and interests. To prevent conflict, for instance, one partner in some love relationships may take on the lifestyle and hobbies of the other.

Furthermore, it can be the case that your partner constantly steers clear of your friends, family, and activities that you enjoy. You must follow their instructions if you want to spend time with them. Therefore, you can act differently with family members if you can only partially express who you are and your life choices in those connections.

You tread carefully

You may consider fear a strong feeling or a natural response to danger. However, anxiety can also appear as a reluctance to do or say something to prevent confrontation or commotion. You might not even be conscious of how you’re feeling; you instinctively steer clear of particular subjects or activities.

Anger can be used as a manipulative strategy by some people. Their outbursts may cause others to withdraw or alter their actions to mitigate the impact. This relationship may be present when a parent cautions their child against doing something for fear that the other parent would become irate.

As an adult, you could also develop hyper awareness of your actions or show symptoms of worry without a known cause. It could weigh every choice you make against what the other person might do. For instance, even though you know your partner doesn’t like them, you might want to attend your friend’s birthday party.

Your boyfriend didn’t talk to you for hours the last time you were with your friend. Furthermore, this time, you pause before saying yes to the offer because you fear that your partner might be upset with you if you do.

You start to worry about your mental health

Additionally, you may have confusion and insecurity over your actions and feelings due to manipulation, which can lead to tension and anxiety. You could start questioning if your reactions are signs of a mental illness. Most frequently, these emotions are brought on by manipulation techniques like gaslighting.

For instance, when you and your partner talk about your upcoming trip, they ask why Cancun is not an option. You remind them of their previous visit, which they claim was a dreadful experience. Therefore, I never said such a thing, they responded. You made it up.

They did repeatedly complain and state they wouldn’t come back. You’re convinced. Did you make it up? After all, your partner claims that you appear to experience it frequently.

When someone gaslights you repeatedly, you begin to doubt your recollection and well-being to the point where you’re unsure whether specific events occurred. It appears to happen to you around this person, which is “curious” enough.

Conclusion

Although manipulation may seem like a simple or “natural” way to resolve a conflict or influence events in your favor, it is cruel and detrimental to your relationships. Honest and loving communication is what you and your loved ones deserve.

Therefore, address the behavior if you are being manipulated in a relationship before it worsens. However, establish clear limits, discuss the issue with the other person, and be prepared to leave if they cannot make changes.

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Author

Nabeel Ahmad is the founder and editor-in-chief of Lone Mind. Apart from Lone Mind, he is a serial entrepreneur, and has founded multiple successful companies in different industries.

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