What is Manipulation and How to Identify Manipulative People?

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Manipulation is the act of smartly tricking others with false facts or a changed fact to modify other people’s views or choices to gain personal benefits. Many individuals often wonder if they are being manipulated and set out to spot manipulative people in their lives.

Indeed, some relationship complications can’t be overlooked. Whether it involves family relationships, friendships, or a romantic tie, the relationships we engage in can either complement our general life experiences or fill it with regrets.

When life presents us with manipulation by other individuals, it’s almost safe to assume they can be a different kind of burden. Manipulation can sometimes be subtle, so this makes it difficult to tell if you are being manipulated. It’s even worse when the person in question almost always makes you feel like you are overreacting.

If you, by chance, find yourself in a relationship with a manipulative person, here is how to identify manipulative people:

People skilled in manipulation assume that their approach is justified

A manipulative person who is hell-bent on exploiting another human, no matter what, will stand their ground. They can be very vocal in how they handle a specific topic or scenario. There are many explanations for this; in particular, manipulative persons need to control situations and what people see to maintain their stand. Whether they’re lying about something or trying to cover up something, the safest way to ensure they’re not found out is to remain in charge.

┬áManipulative people “genuinely believe that their coping strategy with a problem is the best way because it ensures that their needs are met, and that’s what counts.” If you feel as though you’re coping with someone who never gives you an inch, even if you go all the way for them, then you could be dealing with a classic manipulator.


They cross boundaries in their relationships

Manipulators would do everything in their book of manipulation to make you into feeling insignificant and unworthy of their love and affection. They’re going to cross lines that make you doubt your mental wellbeing, and you’ll end up feeling like you are the reason your relationship with them isn’t working.

“People that are dishonest, narcissistic, and have a weak sense of self tend to breach personal boundaries repeatedly.” To get their way, manipulators cross boundaries. If you don’t have limits, you could be a prime target for a manipulative person. If you have people trying to exploit you, you need to learn to stand up for yourself.

They blame you for the issues they have

Consider how many times you walk away from conversations that leave you feeling bad about yourself or feeling guilty about making their situation worse. If you are dealing with someone you think might be manipulating you, then you might be experiencing what’s referred to as “gaslighting,” where deception is used to make individuals doubt themselves and what they have done wrong.

Therapist Sharie Stines stated individuals might feel a sense of shame or defensiveness if you’re being gaslighted. It may feel like you’ve done something wrong.

Both of these claims are valid if you are dealing with a manipulator. Manipulators have a way to push responsibility and point fingers at other individuals. From why they don’t make enough money in their work to why they couldn’t get concert tickets, they’ll blame you and other individuals for everything. When it comes to ensuring that they have no responsibility for their own lives, they are expert manipulators.

They toy with your emotions

Manipulative people are clever and subtle and can work with a sense of trust that makes you feel uneasy in a situation or a task. They not only undermine individuals right in front of them, but they also try to make you feel worse about your feelings.

They have a cunning way of making you feel worse about yourself for feeling sad. If you’re upset, a manipulative individual can try to make you feel bad about your feelings, according to Timothy J. Legg, Ph.D., CRNP at Health Line. “They might use phrases such as” If you loved me, you would never doubt me “or” I couldn’t do the job. I wouldn’t like to be too far away from my children.

When you want to speak to them about their antics, they make you feel bad and make you feel less deserving of things you already have. If a manipulative person knows you are emotionally sensitive, they may use it against you to get the upper hand.

They make communication difficult

Manipulative individuals are fast thinkers, and this form of defense can be used to gain control when they need to take over situations. People who you suspect might be manipulating you may shut down if they suspect you are unto them.

“Manipulative individuals prefer to engage in the” dumb play game:” “The manipulator / passive-aggressive makes you take on what is their duty and gets you to break a sweat by pretending that they don’t understand what you want, or what you want them to do.

They can also turn complication issues on you and make you feel like a bad person for bringing up specific topics. They could appear feeling smug and saying things like, “yup, yeah, good, okay.” This can be irritating enough to make you feel like you’re not getting anywhere with them.

What they’re saying and what they’re doing doesn’t fit

Watching their acts is the best way to say whether someone is trying to trick you or is, in general, a manipulative person. It’s possible that if they say one thing and do another, they’re trying to hide something or they’re telling a lie.

Knowing if someone is manipulating, you can characterize them by their behavior, and their words will never fool you. It helps to know the difference between what a person says and what they do. We can’t always understand why people do the things they do, but one thing is sure: if anyone lies to you about where they are, what they’ve been doing, or with whom they’ve been, something is off.

It’s not an easy discussion to have, and the risk of them targeting you is very high as a way to defend themselves. It would help if you were clear about what you expect, want, and need from them when handling a manipulative person. It might be time to move on if they can’t deliver.

Loren Soeiro, Ph.D. ABPP stated that it is imperative that maintain your original ground when confronting a manipulative person: “If the other person tries to turn to another topic, complicate the issue, or transfer the blame to them, don’t be distracted.” You’re very likely to be emotionally provoked or overstimulated in confrontations like these, but try to stick to your original argument.

The complication with being manipulated is that you are left hurting from being taken advantage of, and at the same time, having to deal with someone who does not live up to their word. Also remember that manipulation works both ways; never be the manipulator.


Manipulative people: 6 things they do – hackspirit

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