Gaslighting Parents: Signs, Effects, And How To Deal With Them

Last Update on November 24, 2022 : Published on November 25, 2022

What do you understand by the word gaslighting? To me, it’s when someone behaves badly with you and instead of apologizing, they try to convince you that their behavior was either provoked by you or they did it for your betterment.

Gaslighting is when you are wronged and the blame is also on you. Many people engage in gaslighting, you can see it in all kinds of relationships. Be it teacher-student, friends, husband-wife, siblings, parent-child, etc.

Today, we are particularly going to focus on gaslighting happening in a parent-child relationship. Specifically, when a parent gaslight the child. Parents play a vital role in a child’s mental and physical development. And when parents choose to gaslight their child’s things can go pretty bad very soon.

Let’s look at the signs of parent gaslighting and learn how to deal with gaslighting parents together.

What Do You Mean By Gaslighting Parents?

Gaslighting parents are those parents who make their children believe that their harsh behavior is caused because of them. Parents who gaslight their children when they are being harsh or unavailable for their children.

For example, a tired parent comes home and when the child asks to play, they get frustrated and yell at the child. Later they try to convince the children that they have been working hard so that the child can lead a happy life and if the child will not allow them to rest then the parent has to yell. If the child would not ask the parent to play, he/she would not have gotten the yelling.

Sometimes it is difficult to identify between a gaslighting parent and a strict parent, therefore knowing the signs of gaslighting parents is very important. Let’s have a look at some signs your parents are gaslighting you.

Signs Of A Gaslighting Parent

Even though it’s said that a parent can do anything for their children and that whatever they do is for the betterment of the child, it’s not always true. There are many examples of parents who have been the worst influence on their children.

However, gaslighting parents can still redeem themselves if they wish to. But gaslighting can have a huge impact on a child’s personal growth and development. It’s important to know when your parents are gaslighting you.

Let’s have a look at some signs of gaslighting parents;

  • A gaslighting parent usually dismisses their children’s feelings and emotions. They’ll tell you that you’re imagining things rather than addressing your issues.
  • A gaslighting parent will always try to control your emotions. They will tell you exactly how you should be feeling and when you can feel certain emotions.
  • A gaslighting parent will most likely make you feel guilty for things that aren’t in your control or when it’s not even your fault.
  • A gaslighting parent will always tell you that you are overreacting and question your sanity almost all the time.
  • A gaslighting parent doesn’t have in them to appreciate or give you the due credit for your accomplishments. They will always discredit you for your achievements.
  • A gaslighting parent will try to isolate you from the rest of your friends and family. They will try to convince you that no one understands you better than your parents.
  • A gaslighting parent will limit their affection towards you and withdraw their love to gain control over you.

How to Deal With Gaslighting Parents?

Having gaslighting parents can destroy a child’s growing years. It can make children develop several serious issues like low self-esteem, distorted self-concept, identity issues, depression, anxiety, etc.

Dealing with gaslighting parents is going to be tough but with proper professional guidance, it can be managed. However, there are a few things you can do to protect yourself from the danger of a gaslighting parent.

Let’s have a look at things you can do on your own to deal with a gaslighting parent;

1. Journaling: it will help you track your feelings and emotions and understand yourself better.

2. Boundaries: it’s important to set boundaries for gaslighting parents because they have no concept of it whatsoever. Do not let them cross your boundaries.

3. Support system: build a strong support system. Be it a group of friends or family members, there are some people who you can trust and rely on for support.

4. Educate yourself: if you have gaslighting parents, it’s important to educate yourself about gaslighting tricks and tactics so that you can identify gaslighting when it’s happening to you.

5. Document their gaslighting behavior: sometimes it becomes difficult to recognize gaslighting so whenever you identify a gaslighting behavior, write it down in your journal. This will help you understand your parent’s gaslighting behavior and not fall into their trap again.

6. Seek Therapy: it’s very important to get professional help because growing up being gaslighted all through your childhood can be challenging. It can give rise to various mental health conditions and only a mental health professional can help you with it.

That’s all folks!

I hope you found this blog about gaslighting parents helpful, informative and interesting. Do share this blog with your friends and family so that we can all understand the signs of a gaslighting parent and learn how to deal with gaslighting parents.

Thanks for reading.

Take care and stay safe.

Next Read:

10 Gaslighting Phrases That People Commonly Use

Are You Being Gaslighted? Try These Ways To Deal With Gaslighting

6 Effective Ways To Defend Yourself Against Gaslighting

20 Examples Of Gaslighting In Your Relationships, With Parents, Friends, And At Work

About The Author

Kirti Bhati
Kirti Bhati

I am an English literature (major) and psychology (minor) graduate from St. Bede’s College, Shimla. Postgraduate in Clinical psychology from IIS University, Jaipur. She has published a Research paper on Music therapy in the military population and Workplace stress in a national seminar conducted by Fortis hospital (gurugram) and international seminar conducted by St. Bede’s College, Shimla, Respectively. Authored a dissertation work on ‘effect of social media addiction on the mental and physical well-being in adolescents’ Currently working at calm sage as a writer.

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