Realising when someone is manipulating you

by - March 15, 2020

Recognising manipulation graphic with pink flowers

There are times when it is obvious that someone is trying to control you. Other times, it is more subtle. It can be disguised as someone being “nice” or just “trying to be kind”. It is so easy in these circumstances to feel guilty and feel like you are falling down a rabbit hole, but can’t stop it. I am going to specifically focus on the more subtle way of manipulation - where it is disguised as “kindness”. 

I have been in a situation relatively recently, which I didn’t initially realise was manipulative. Where I have someone stating that all they are doing is trying to be “nice” and check in on me, but they continue to mention that they are hurt by something I have done and that it’s on me because I didn’t give it a second chance. That I should be doing what they want.

I did not notice it so much as being manipulative at the very start because it was sometimes disguised as "I am being nice checking up on you". But, there was often this underlying expectation. I also found that a lot of the time when I did not want to comply, there was guilt-tripping - because I’d really hurt them and just was not listening, when in reality what I wanted was just different to what they wanted. I did not want them to continue to contact me, but they continued to do so against my wishes. Apparently, I just did not appreciate their kindness and intentions. It was behaviour suggesting I should feel bad for the choices I have made just because they did not align with the choice they wanted me to make.  

I am writing this to state you are free to make the choices you want. Don’t let someone else make you feel guilty for a decision you’ve made for yourself - you matter and it is important to consider what is best for you as well as take into account how others feel. If someone keeps constantly asking for the same thing despite the fact that you have made it clear that it is not what you want, they are not the right person for you and you should probably let them go. It doesn’t matter that it might be presented supposedly as someone trying to be “nice”. A "nice" person would respect your choices. Your boundaries are important and if you say no, someone shouldn't be trying to convince consistently and state the same thing over and over hoping that if they insist enough you will eventually give in to what they want. 

You don’t need to feel guilty if they try and do you favours as means to trying to convince you or coerce you into doing something you don’t want to do. It is OK for you to step back and you don’t owe them anything. You don’t owe them further explanations of something you have already justified or to try and go out of your way to somewhat comply. So here is to embracing your own freedom and making your own choices - because everyone should have the right to do what they think is best for them.  💗

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