1. Being overly analytical behind the words of people
Words carry weight and manipulating words carry a different kind of weight. It can cause us to think that there is something wrong with ourselves and the reality that we are living in. When we are able to see through this kind of manipulation, we will be more careful for the second time around and even react extremely sensitive about it, in some cases, in an unhealthy way where we can’t even have a normal conversation with someone without being overly skeptical. What we do next is to analyze every bit of word that’s coming out of someone’s mouth and missing the chance to have genuine interactions because of our damaged trust in others.
2. Cutting people off immediately if there is a slight sense of suspicion
Being gaslighted also have consequences on newly established relationships. It means that we also act more careful around those we have just met and have allowed them to have space in our life. We would get hyper-aware of their actions and words, not allowing any manipulation slip through our fingers. So when we sense any suspicion in our gut, we don’t let that slide through anymore like we did when we were not yet aware of others gaslighting us. The downside to this safety mechanism is that we also risk removing those in our life that could have led to great relationships if we just have given ourselves and them enough time to get to know each other better. But no, one of the aftermaths of being gaslighted on is that it is hard to give someone the benefit of the doubt because we don’t want to make the same mistake in giving someone permission to manipulate and hurt us. And if we do, we will just feel bad and guilty that we have allowed ourselves to make the same mistake twice.
3. Lacking trust to form new relationships
Another side effect can appear and it might be the worst one in my opinion. When we can’t even scrape enough trust to meet new people and make new friends, you know that your trust in people has been crushed to the ground. When we deprive ourselves in meeting new people, on whatever occasion, it can cause isolation and loneliness in the long run because of an excessive lack of social stimulant. In turn, our self-doubt increases rapidly and will get us in a spiral of negativity, leaving us overthinking our own actions and our self-worth in the end.
4. You have trouble conversing as you are aware that your own words can be used against you
Even holding a simple conversation can make your stress levels sky rock rapidly after you have experienced being gaslighted on. You are aware that your own words can be twisted and used against you. So you find yourself having trouble holding a conversation where you are constantly doubting if you are saying the right things instead of enjoying a nice chat with someone. In the worst-case scenario, we are even too bothered to start a conversation and just stay silent for our own sake.
5. Having an aloof or uninterested demeanor to minimize the chance to get gaslighted on again
What kind of people are the easiest to manipulate? Unfortunately, people who care or at least appear to care, because these people are able to listen and take in the words of those around them seriously. People who care also tend to have an interested demeanor, to begin with. Nothing wrong with it, but most ‘’gaslighters’’ target those who listen and care. When you have been gaslighted on, you naturally build a safety mechanism and start to be more aware of how you come across in order to protect yourself, which means adjusting into an aloof or uninterested demeanor towards those we aren’t sure of trusting. The end result? We might come across as disinterested or even rude at times, but deep down we are just protecting ourselves.
6. You tend to think first about yourself than anyone else
Placing yourself as the first place is, in general, a good thing, but in terms of ‘’being gaslighted on’’, it’s actually one of the many side effects that you will get afterward. It can work in your favor if you never have put yourself on the first place before. But still, it can get out of hand when you only start to focus only at yourself and dismissing common sense while ignoring everyone around you, including those who have the best interest in you, becoming unintentionally egoistical and cynical towards anyone that you encounter with, including family and close friends that didn’t even bring you to harm in the first place.