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10 Telltale Signs Your Partner Is Manipulating You

Written by Alex Myles

Ironically, in partnerships where we’re expected to get affection, care, and encouragement, we can sometimes feel like puppets controlled by our spouses.

We’re going to go over some of the most popular deception strategies as well as some easy methods to combat them.

Please keep in mind that any of the material in this article is subjective and should not be used in every circumstance.

1 – You are the one that is to blame all the time.

Manipulators all have one thing in common: they’re masters at causing you to feel guilty even though you’re not.

Have you ever asked your partner for assistance and got a response that went anything like this? “Don’t you think I’m busy? I’ve told you before that I’ve got a lot on my plate! Why are you always thinking about yourself?” So here you are, guilty for finding assistance.

If that’s the reality, the partner is most definitely one of the only individuals whom the universe revolves around.

To avoid being manipulated, Barrie Davenport recommends the following strategies:

Recognize that your partner is seeking to assert power over you.

Maintain your composure.

Tell them that they are an adult who is required to accept accountability for their acts.

2 – They are always victims.

Who wouldn’t feel sorry for a kitten? Manipulators want you to see them in this light. Their lives are so complicated and full of adversity that you can empathize with their plight (and give them help with the additional work they got today).

This trick is used by manipulators to plead for a “favor” or to stop taking accountability. This may be the case if your partner regularly feeds you a barrage of dramatic tales concerning their life’s misfortunes. However, this should not be confused with your companion expressing their emotions with you in order to gain help. A manipulator seeks to gain advantage.

3 – They provoke.

When a manipulator has exhausted all other possibilities, they may try to manipulate you as a last resort. They might say stuff that may make a reasonable individual doubt a manipulator’s sanity, or they may do something to elicit unpleasant feelings and enrage you.

The aim is to drag you into a needless argument and force you to say something that the manipulator will use against you. Tell them what they’re thinking isn’t true, and you’ll be treated to a disaster on par with a Shakespeare script.

If you see this kind of action, it’s important that you keep your cool and don’t give in to the aggression. Simply attempt to return the discussion to the original subject. However, if your partner continues to act in this manner, it is preferable to finish the discussion gently.

4 – They put pressure.

The less time to decide, the less time we have to ponder. Manipulators force you to make choices quickly enough that you don’t have time to think them over. That’s why you have a minute or two to react to an issue of global relevance.

According to Preston Ni of Psychology Today, it’s best not to make a decision right away. Instead, take your time and consider it. If your partner continues to push, it’s a smart idea to say that you’ll think about it.

5 – What are your issues? I’d never heard about them before.

Manipulators often have one thing in common: they don’t give a damn. A dishonest spouse would most definitely do one of the following if you try to chat about your issues and express your feelings:

Pretend they’re distracted to stop the discussion.

Redirect the discussion to their issues: “It’s terrible that you’ve been assigned extra work today. How can you imagine how I feel every day coping with it?” Do you think your partner is really caring about your problems after this?

According to Davenport, there are few strategies to defend oneself from this type of behavior. Finding a new partner, one that is more loving and understanding, will certainly be preferable.

6 – I cannot survive if you leave me.

Emotional extortion is a popular manipulative tactic that is probably the most vile and selfish of it all. The manipulator preys on your fears and remorse, rendering you accountable for their lives and welfare. In other terms, “If you leave me, I’d k*ll myself.”  But it’s just a threat, and a snowman festival in Miami is more probable.

To stop getting manipulated in this manner, here’s what to do:

Know that it’s only a threat the partner makes to defend themselves.

Remind your partner that you aren’t in control of their choices.

7 – Didn’t you say it?

Gaslighting is another nefarious tactic used by manipulators. It’s built on bending reality and distorting the past to place the manipulator in the most convenient spot possible while still confusing you.

“No, I didn’t talk to you in that way. What are you talking about? If you called for help, I’d remember. There’s something wrong with you right now.” That’s how it appears in practice. Any manipulators master this technique to the point that you begin to doubt your memory.

But it’s quick to get caught up in this game. Consider the following:

Trust your memory. Be certain you recall events just as they occurred.

Insist on perfectly remembering what you said, just don’t get into a war.

8 – They keep repeating themselves.

Manipulators aren’t interested in talking about your common issues. They’re fine for the time being. They deceive you into believing that the conversation is done when it isn’t. That’s why you keep rehashing the same tired arguments.

It’s probably simpler to get walls to talk than it is to get a manipulator to change their mind, so here are two strategies to help you stop falling into their trap:

Always have the conversation point in mind.

Remember why you began the discussion and what triggered the issue.

9 – They use trickery.

This basic technique is used by manipulators to get what they want from you. They exaggerate a request to the point of absurdity, then follow up with an actual, but smaller, request.

“Ok, if you can’t find a blue whale’s heart for dinner, how about we head to the Italian restaurant downtown?”

You’re more inclined to choose the one that’s the simplest to do. The secret is that you don’t have to make a choice. This is a simple technique to prevent. Only bear two things in mind:

You are not obligated to help.

Your preferences can be based on reasoning rather than comparisons.

10 – They actually act as though they don’t know what they’re doing.

Pretending you don’t understand is certainly a juvenile technique, but manipulators have no problems with it. They would do anything to maintain a safe position.

There aren’t many options for avoiding this activity, so taking your partner to a shop and purchasing a toy they like may be the best option. But, oh, aren’t we just adults here? As a consequence, it’s preferable to:

When asking the same question, try various methods.

Behave in the same manner. Is a companion who actually declines to assist you worthy of better treatment?

Manipulation is a character flaw, so keep in mind that you can’t change a manipulator’s conduct. Even if it means breaking up with you, they’ll hold to their behavior.

Have you ever been in a relationship that was manipulative? Please post your story so that others will be alerted!

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Alex Myles

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