Want to become a master of the first G in Gaslight, Gatekeep, Girlboss? Stop listening to what your silly friends are telling you and start deceiving your partner today!
Step One: Do Your Research
Start your gaslighting journey by sitting down to watch the 1944 movie Gaslight. If you want to go the extra mile, read the 1938 play Gas Light that the movie was based on. Both focus on a husband isolating his rich wife, manipulating her to think she is not mentally well, and stealing her money. Take note of the patience the husband uses in committing to the long con of tricking his wife and use his inspiration to remind you that gaslighting is a marathon, not a sprint.
Step Two: Lay the Groundwork
To help you ease into your deceit, make your partner feel too smart to be gaslighted. One wonderful example of gaslighting I’ve seen firsthand is my friend’s partner telling her that she’s “too intelligent to be tricked” and “would never fall for something like that.” By making her believe she’s superior to others and would never fall victim to this manipulation, she has become much more vulnerable and receptive to future gaslighting. This part of the process is crucial before you jump into your exploitation so that your partner does not become suspicious.
Step Three: Start Small
In the movie Gaslight, the gas light of the house changed every time the husband left. Pay just as much attention to detail to your own gaslighting. Start small by moving books around from shelf to shelf, slow inching your tv to the left, or replacing the brand of bagels you buy. By starting small and denying changes in the little aspects of your partner’s life, you will be able to pull larger heists in no time.
Step Four: Enjoy the Fruits of Your Labor
Now’s the time to take advantage of your hard work. You can start lying to your partner about what days you have class and how you did the dishes last so it’s their turn yet again. My favorite application of gaslighting is trying your partner into believing they know nothing about your favorite foods. The next time they buy you your favorite ice cream flavor for your birthday, make them feel crazy by lying and saying it’s your least favorite.