By Thorsten J. Pattberg for the Saker Blog
This is Part 3 of a series: “This concise text will introduce to our distinguished readers the most deadly ways to subvert, to demoralize, to lobotomize and finally to liquidize someone‘s brains… until they are reduced to nothing more than another helpless Schizo Fran or Mona Loser ready for suicide or the local madhouse. “
The most ruthless emotional abuse of all is gaslighting. It is extremely common, but rarely brought to such sadistic perfection as in certain toxic personalities – relatives or spouses or celebrities – which we typically and colloquially render psychopaths – that is: predators who are without empathy or concern for the well-being of others. Those rare monsters attack and attack the mind of their isolated victims and drive them insane by a single-minded, ridiculously easy yet most effective trick: “You must be hallucinating your pain!”
In colloquial language we use the term gaslighting too lightly for about any incidence of white lie or having somebody on, when in psychology gaslighting is not your average natural excuse or defense mechanism, but really an inborn genetic predisposition of a criminal mind toward subduing his fair game. Receivers, unfortunate victims that is, of relentless gaslighting will require medical treatment eventually, as they suffer from depression and reality-loss and sleeplessness.
The gaslighter is doing something to the victim with the intention to break her trust and say he hasn‘t done it. And herein lies the unspeakable horror: The insane are really just sane persons who were driven to the psychiatric ward by a truly insane abuser. So, having acquired those all-important sleep aids and hypnotics and enzodiazepine drugs through their doctor of confidentiality, the poor victim crawls back home and into the den of their remorseless abuser, waiting to receive some more humiliation.
The psychopath did not acquire his gaslighting skills through an how-to-do book-club reading any more than a natural player acquired his gift to pick up insecure women through a book on pick-up artistry. He is a natural and gaslights effortlessly. He does or he says the most unimaginable cruel things and denies flat-out and on-the-spot, even if caught lying on camera, that he never did so or said so, and that “you must be imagining things” and that “you are crazy!” Seeing the impact of his abuse, the terror in the eyes of his victim, gives him a sensational, almost erotic satisfaction. So he will do it again and again.
A natural-born slut, herself having been abused by her sex-working single mommy from Wan Chai in Hong Kong and countless sugar daddies in the British colony, had over 1000 sex partners in her golden years, and is now – 10 years later in Ford Lauderdale, Florida USA – suspected by her clueless American boyfriend of carrying the smell of another man’s semen.
She did it because she is strong, fearless and independent. When her boyfriend was away, she hooked up with one of her many Tinder dates (a popular dating app). She didn’t clean up, went back home, and wanted to continue having sex with her boyfriend upon his return home later that evening. He clearly smells and tastes another man’s odor and junk.
She dismisses him as being paranoid and crazy. She even shouts at him, he is probably cheating on her! The drama doesn’t end here, of course. Since he got together with her after using an online dating app called Tinder, he now caught a genital yeast infection. Like with herpes, there is no cure. He dares to bring up his itching and ailment to her, which she now puts on him: “Who knows where you got that from, it wasn‘t me!“ all the while scratching her purse.
When he asked her politely about her past in the British colony, she put it on him and called him a dirty accuser and a racist fag. To her surprise, he takes it. He takes it all. Wonderful. She is gaslighting him, and he is terrified and overwhelmed. Nobody ever did this to him. What a strong, fearless and independent woman she is! And because this ‘surreality’ is fascinating, he stays. This is nature’s way of saying a master and his servant have found each other. They are complementary.
Although psychopaths make barely 5% of the population, they are never complete without 5% of the population totally ruined by their manipulative ways, and the rest 90% who can’t take their eyes off them. Gaslighting works, and works all the time. There is no prevention, no vaccination, no cure. For example, in the age of the Internet, we see hundreds of depraved psychopaths setting up video channels and basically calling everyone stupid. EVERYONE! From scientists to politicians to their parents and their old friends. They are all stupid!
Now watch what is happening in real life. People are emotionally affected. Vulnerable, easily impressionable people are getting hooked. He must be very smart because he calls everyone stupid. How can anybody be so bold and honest! Wow. I have to watch more of him.
Ironically, healthy people – whether by nasty computer algorithms or by their own curiosity-that-kills-the-cat – click on those psychopathic videos, thinking that they are immune. “Hey, I cannot be affected. Not me. I went to university!” How wrong they are. Nobody is resistant to gaslighting. If an intelligent person is called an imbecile, he will eventually give in to negative thoughts and self-doubt. If a good person is called evil, he will reflect on past regrets and failures. If a sane person is called insane, she will immediately feel a rush of hormones and chemical reactions in her brain. That’s because in all those cases, their minds are under attack. They are in danger.
If you are being humiliated by gaslighters, if you have a healthy sense of inquiry and want to know why Oh-Lord-please-help-me that person said that to you, cold-blooded and without remorse, you naturally feel a strong desire to stay around and design a plan on how to get even. You think: For justice’s sake, this asshole must never get away with it. But of course, now you are insane. And as to the question of why he or she did this to you… well, they said it a thousand times: “You were imagining things!”
Many, many relationships crash because of permanent gaslighting. Take Aaron, a college drop-out who nevertheless turned into a hard-working, honest car mechanic and now small business owner and, because of his exuding trustworthiness, attracts a trophy wife who refuses to work. Aaron is constantly told he is lazy and useless, but he makes nothing of it at first, because obviously this can‘t be true – right?
Over the next months that quickly turn into years, once stable and self-confident Aaron, who unfortunately keeps his emotional life to himself, is viciously targeted and sees his reality – past and present and future – crumble before the beak of this unholy lying harpy.
Why can‘t she flush the toilet? “It wasn’t me!” But it is only you and me here. “You are stupid, it wasn’t me!”
Why is she always checking his phone? “I didn’t do it, you left it open on the table, stupid!”
She watches television or her mobile screen for 16 hours a day for years, yet in front of friends and family she lies she is a busybody and works for important clients. How can she lie so blatantly, while she is just standing right beside him? “I didn’t say anything, you are crazy, you want to ruin my life!”
Gaslighters kick their spouses like our Aaron here in their sleep, smash the doors at night, mess with his food, steal money, even cuckold him with another man’s child… and will not only deny all of it but urge the poor bastard to seek medical treatment or, in the cruelest possible way to finish him off, report him as the abuser to the authorities.
Sooner or later, the patient’s reality collapses. He might resist one year or even ten years, for the sake of his young children perhaps, or with a plan to man-up and retaliate by making the gaslighter’s life a living hell. But after all those years, the mind is broken and the brain is addicted to drugs. The victim has lost his job, his self-respect. He falls ill, suffers strokes, heart attacks, memory loss and severe panic attacks when she is around. He stops speaking, because his words will be turned around and used against him. He believes now he deserved to be treated like this, because ‘reality’ is what the strong impose on the weak. Like she always said: “It is your fault, you made me treat you like this!”
The government and the military, the secret services and many of those classified, state-funded psychological warfare institutes have studied gaslighting and its effect on the human psyche. It is well understood in individuals and can be applied on a massive scale to millions of victims.
A text-book example of geopolitical gaslighting were Hitler Germany’s endless accusations that Poland was crazy and Germany would never start a war and invade Poland, despite the war-preparation going on for the whole world to see, basically from February 1933 to September 1st, 1939, when brutish Germany finally blitzed Poland. And even then, it was all the fault of the Polish who foolishly attacked first.
The term gaslighting entered pop culture allegedly with a 1938 script and 1944 film starring Ingrid Bergman, who herself was half Swedish half German. But let us not deceive ourselves over the fact that this form of mind savagery was with us long before the Holocaust, the Great War and the advent of modern psychology. All over the world, and perhaps just across the road, predators prey on poor Aarons and little Ingrids.
The obsessive suspicion, alas, is on you. Your tormentors are already making up new names for gaslighting. How about plausible deniability, conspiracy theories, counter-propaganda or just fact-checking. Whatever you think the government is really treating you, it is your crazy imagination that was the problem.
And as to the gruesome metaphor of a waning dim light, your light of course, that is slowly dying in your abusive relationship, remember that nobody is going to believe your twisted story, when it silently and irrevocably ends.
The author is a German writer and cultural critic.