In General — this is you problem

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Well, there's a very popular idea that man only sees what he wants to see. Moreover, it is based on a completely true fact about the selectivity of our attention, noticed in the late nineteenth century American psychologist and philosopher William James (he called it if I remember correctly, "the relevance of internal content and external observable phenomena"). However, once in the mass, this fact – as always usual in such cases, simplified to the extreme and purchased over-the primitive form, as reflected in the title. The key word is "only."


If only it were that simple, then training would be impossible. And the perception of the new one too. And recognition errors, their correction too. And the phenomenon of awareness of something (i.e., the ability to look at the situation from a new point of view) too. After all, we ONLY see what they want to see, right? In General, if you see dirt – well, you understand, "pig will find dirt everywhere". And the discussion will not dirt (facts, processes, phenomena...). And the pig, that is you.

A little surprising to me is that this idea is loved not only manipulators, a variety of colors (of which below), but also psychologists. However, psychologists, as people sometimes "advanced", use a more sophisticated form than about the pig. For example, the private Facebook in response to comments about the prevailing atmosphere of hatred in Russia today I received two comments from colleagues:

Yes, there is no such atmosphere, you have less TV to watch

About the "atmosphere" I would venture to remind you that man sees around him what he wants and can see. It is even naturally attracted to him and bunch up around him. So, I think the first thing for man to do when "feeling the atmosphere" is intently and impartially to look at myself

Both review – with varying degrees of grace – denying the adequacy of the perception of the author, and move the conversation to his personal features (of course, bad). There is one very important point that separates manipulation from simple disagreement (in the end, anyone can be wrong and make mistakes in their perception). In a simple disagreement and say, "I disagree with you, I have a different vision/feeling of the atmosphere" — talking about himself, about his world and his vision. Becomes possible contact between two people-or at least the acquaintance of two pictures of the world. When "closely look at yourself" the contact of two equal "I" cannot be one of them in terms of the situation inadequately.

Another great review in the same style. If you come across Facebook or any social network to insult or anything, obviously not liking your stuff and talk about it, you might get something like this:

I wonder what the virtual slums need to climb to bump into these insults. I here they stumble, slip past the attention, and maybe do not have them. But I admit, I don't feel emotion of righteous anger at the insulting J) maybe you should look for the mud to thoroughly go crazy, too? J)

In General, the idea is clear: if you're talking about something that does not see, does not want to see or what not to give importance to the other, it does not indicate the difference of views, and that you have something wrong. This idea (and related manipulations) has been given a specific name – "gaslighting". The name I really don't like, starting with the fact that even his English, nothing will give you in terms of understanding the phenomenon (unlike another unloved a lot of the term "victimblaming"). This word comes from the name of a Hollywood movie, "Gaslight", in which displayed this manipulation. On the Internet it is found in fairly soft options, but the real interpersonal relationship often turns life into hell.

Two main features of "gaslighting" is a) doubt about the adequacy of the interlocutor and b) the denial that it is important for the interlocutor (facts or feelings). Often comes down to the idea that the other person is mentally abnormal. I have met with situations in which parents, in response to the attempts of their children to convey to them their claims directly started to question their mental state. "Mom, you beat me!" — "It was not. You invent". Children, desperate parents complete negation of violence, neglect, disregard, can get angry and even shout and then the manipulators include the second part: "Look, I fear your condition. You're crazy. Go check up by a psychiatrist".

When gaslighting there are two basic shapes: "Adequate" ("Normal") and "Abnormal" ("Inadequate"). "Adequate" instead to heed the words "Abnormal" (not necessarily to agree, by the way), the threshold rejects them – what is acceptable to say that "hysterical", "crazy" and so on? Very often the game is played men against women. If a man is afraid of strong emotions, those who expresses them, often automatically recorded into "Inadequate". I remember heard in the bus the words of one young man says loudly into her cell phone: "if you're not psyched, then the problem would not have happened. Control yourself, that's all – and then all will be well". It seems that in the picture of this young man is only "Psiheya friend", and the reasons for her "psychosis" — exclusively in itself, not in its disregard.

"I didn't", "you're imagining things", "you're all wrong" — frequent words in the Arsenal of "Adequate", which has the monopoly on the "correct understanding". Psychologically "grounded" I mean "it's all your projection" (that projection can be adequate, forgettable at all), or "these are your emotions due to the fact that you have worked enough their problems with a psychologist" (that even "excessive" emotional reaction does not mean the absence of problems, calling it too is forgotten). Sometimes there is a complete lack of response to the words of another. Just listened to – and all. Got up and went to do their business.

In the end, a person appointed to the role of "Abnormal", can really start to think that something is not right, to feel annoying, hysterical, too arrogant and so on. I have had situations when customers constantly asked me "and this is my response – is this normal?", and then in their family history were found to have relatives who used to say to customers "this is some inadequate", "nerves heal!" or "daughter, drink valeryanochki, and that's something you're nervous" ("daughter" just learned that the mother of her own money gave her lover). "Adequate" does not have to be tough-neglect, it can be "understanding", "compassionate", for example, in response to the dissatisfaction of his wife reply, "I understand you, you're depressed, so say so. Get some rest, please, and go see a psychiatrist, I am willing to pay any costs."

There are a few typical options of devaluation and neglect, which are used in gaslighting:

— "You care – you decide". The problem is the one who started the conversation about the problem. Him/her and find out. If I am satisfied – I won't do anything. Problems of Indians of the Sheriff do not excite.

"Always inappropriate". When the partner is not suited for the conversation, it always turns out to be inappropriate, irrelevant and "not now."

"I took/and note". In response to a long message and emotional appeal – brief "OK, I'll think about it", "noted" or "good". And all – after that there are no consequences.

— "This/the first man/woman doesn't feel that way". That is, if you were better/other – problems would have never happened. Work on yourself, grow!

"I understand how you feel bad". Instead of discussing specific questions – unwelcome pity and sympathy, ignoring what was said. Men love all women's dissatisfaction blame on PMS.

"You see only what you want to see." In fact it is – a counter-accusation, translated conversation with the subject of personal shortcomings.

— Do you want to jeopardize our relationship?" The implication that attempts to clarify something will lead to a deterioration of what we have now. The culprit/the culprit is already defined, "I told you!"

There is a watered-down gaslighting occurring even more frequently: "well, there's something, but you're obviously exaggerating because of the fact that you have...".

How to be in such situations, if you obviously zapisyvayut in "Abnormal"? For starters, if you're in a steady relationship with someone starts to feel "wrong", hysterical, bruised (on the background of dazzling "Adequate") are you involved in this manipulation, the essence of which is to whitewash the manipulator projected on you all its shortcomings.

It is important to remember a few things. There's a difference between ignoring depreciation and reasoned disagreement. The other person has every right not to share our vision of a relationship or situation, but not tying our vision to our shortcomings.

There is a difference between situational and systematic ignoring. Neither we nor our partners are not perfect, and may be ignoring, and unwillingness in a particular time to discuss something. The difference is that when gaslighting this state is a normal, constant background, not a rare episode.

The inability to "reach out" to the other can be associated with the way we do, and personal characteristics of the other and ourselves. But certainly not JUST us. Even if we are doing something "wrong" (for example, pick up a form expressing their feelings in which do not want to join in the conversation) the other person genuinely wants to solve the problem, try to make counter steps in the form of questions, clarifications, expressions of their own feelings. When gaslighting all of this is missing, the effort makes only "Abnormal".

Gaslighting not necessarily carried out consciously and with malicious intent. It is based on a powerful shame, and, as its corollary unwillingness to recognize its own imperfection and its own contribution to the problem. If our adequacy begin to doubt strangers on the Internet – well, it's typical narcissistic arrogance.

What to do? If briefly, and just to get out of the relationship, in which there is no place for you, your feelings and thoughts. To regain a sense of self-worth, which inevitably suffers in a situation of "problem-to-you." Useless to play by the rules "Adequate", because the only condition that will allow him to recognize you "Adequate" is a total surrender and denial of all inconvenient for the "Normal" experiences and needs. Even a Declaration of divorce – if we are talking about a married couple – will be interpreted as "well, I told/and that he/she brain is broken".

And again, we do see what we want to see. But, first, this fact does not mean that we see ONLY that. And secondly... This does not mean that what we see – does not exist.

PS something that reminds me... posted


Author: Ilya Latypov

P. P. S. And remember, just changing your mind - together we change the world! ©



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