Gaslighting is Meant to Make You Crazy

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Gaslighting is a form of abuse meant to drive you crazy; question your own sanity. Read more on HealthyPlace.

Gaslighting is Meant to Make You Crazy

Gaslighting is a cruel and manipulative form of emotional abuse. The term “gaslighting” comes from a 1938 play (and subsequent film adaptations) by Patrick Hamilton entitled “Gas Light.”

In the play, a husband leads his wife along a convoluted path of deception and lies. To have her inheritance to himself, he needs his wife out of the picture, locked into what was then called an insane asylum. To convince her that she is indeed crazy, he plays mind games, such as turning down the gas lamps in the house and convincing her that she’s imagining or forgetting things (Here are some examples of gaslighting and how to respond.)

The play was so chilling that the title became synonymous with abusive behavior that seeks to control someone fully and completely, essentially making him or her a puppet (Gaslighting: Designed to Destroy Your Sanity).

Is someone in your life trying to control you by sneakily and insidiously making you question your own thoughts and perceptions? Because it happens so gradually, you might not realize what’s going on. A few things to watch for:

  • Do you think someone is lying to you, but when you mention it, the person turns the lies on you?
  • Do you find yourself questioning yourself often?
  • Do you feel that you have no control in the relationship?
  • Do you feel like you’re slowly losing your mind?

Gaslighting is harmful. Find at least one person you trust and begin to share what you’re experiencing.

Related Articles Dealing with Gaslighting

Your Thoughts

Today's Question: If you’ve been a victim of gaslighting, what brought you to the conclusion that your abuser was at fault? We invite you to participate by sharing your thoughts, experiences, and knowledge on the HealthyPlace Facebook page and on the HealthyPlace Google+ page.

From the HealthyPlace Mental Health Blogs

On all our blogs, your comments and observations are welcomed.

Feel free to share your thoughts and comments at the bottom of any blog post. And visit the mental health blogs homepage for the latest posts.


From HealthyPlace YouTube Channel

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Here are the top 3 mental health articles HealthyPlace Facebook fans are recommending you read:

  1. Overcoming Your Fear of Addiction Recovery
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If you're not already, I hope you'll join us/like us on Facebook too. There are a lot of wonderful, supportive people there.


Mental Health Quote

"Never forget that walking away from something unhealthy is brave."

Read more abuse quotes.


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APA Reference
Peterson, T. (2018, July 30). Gaslighting is Meant to Make You Crazy , HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2024, July 16 from

Last Updated: August 7, 2018

Medically reviewed by Harry Croft, MD

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