What is manipulative behavior? Manipulative behavior is coercive. The manipulator’s goal is the create subtle situations that shame you. We’ve all been manipulative at times. There is a manipulative personality type however. Persons who habitually manipulate others are emotional abusers. Overt abusers are obviously abusive. The manipulative abuser is covert. Her abuse is passive-aggressive behavior. Her manipulative behavior is not situational, it’s chronic and habitual. Manipulative abusers have been called different things through the years: sadistic, control freaks, sociopaths, invalidators.
Why do people become manipulative abusers? There are many possible reasons: intense self-esteem issues, delusions of grandeur, religious mania, alcoholism, substance abuse, abuse issues in childhood, even brain damage. Two things that are certain: manipulative behavior is toxic and unhealthy. If you are the target of a manipulative abuser, it’s the manipulator’s problem and not yours’. How can you recognize a manipulative abuser?
-Manipulative abusers have bizarre communication patterns. They make provocative statements and ask leading questions. He tries to lure you into an argument. Trap you in some imagined falsehood. He is trying to back you into a corner.
-Manipulative abusers give backhanded compliments. ‘Well you finally found a nice shirt.’ Their ‘compliments’ are thinly disguised insults. When you call them on it, they become offended and accuse you of not being able to accept a compliment.
-When you say something, the manipulative abuser may ignore you, poke fun at your statements, contradicts you or belittles you. Abusers love to say things like, ‘you’re not making any sense’, even though she has been interrupting you, ignoring you and arguing with your ideas since the conversation began.
-Manipulative abusers speaks ‘for’ you in front of others, they second guess you, trying to show that you aren’t capable of speaking for yourself. Sometimes a control freak claims that she is trying to ‘translate’ or ‘interpret’ what you said. The dishonesty is on her part, but she’ll try to lay it on you.
-Manipulative abusers use the art of implication, body language, innuendo and tone of voice to perfection. They have a fully stocked arsenal of psychological tricks and mind games to keep you second guessing yourself and looking over your shoulder. If confronted with their tricks, they turn the tables on you is a crazy game of point-counterpoint.
-Manipulative abusers don’t keep promises. They arrive late and ‘forget’ to call. They like to leave you high and dry. They set up situations designed to make you feel awkward, feel shame or suffer embarrassment. They are always trying to confuse you. They like you ‘on your toes’. But they remain always the ‘good guy’.
-They seize upon every tiny mistake you make and blow it out of proportion. They will manufacture things you supposedly did if they get desperate and you aren’t making enough mistakes. Abusers follow you places, check up on you, question your judgment. Manipulative abusers defend their distrustful and disrespectful actions by blaming you for ‘being paranoid’ or ‘not worthy of trust or respect’.
-Manipulative abusers do not take personal responsibility for themselves. They may admit mistakes, but usually in a backhanded sort of way that lets you know that it was really ‘someone else’s fault’.
-Manipulators are a law unto themselves. They believe that the rules do not apply to them. Manipulative abusers make up rules.They make up rules as they go. They change the rules randomly and expect you to read their minds. They expect you to adhere to their contorted set of rules.
-Manipulators literally live in their own world.
Manipulative abusers will trample you down and leave you to bleed. They will make you believe that it was all your fault. They only meted out the punishment that you deserve and its good for you. And then they will move on to the next victim and convince him that you were an evil person. Please. Don’t be that victim.