Manipulators Will Manipulate You If You Let Them

by Yvonne Chase on January 13, 2020

Someone asked me a question the other day; a personal question about my life that for me came out of nowhere because there’s no real communication between me and him. My response was, “I’m not discussing my personal life with people I don’t trust.”

manipulate

I don’t know about you, however, if someone I care about gave me that response, I would be focused on the fact that they don’t trust me and I’d want to know why because there is no relationship without trust. If trust is broken, we have a serious problem. I’d probably be hurt to know that someone I care about doesn’t trust me. The keywords in the last sentence are, “someone I care about.” He doesn’t really care about me or our lack of relationship. He was being nosey and fishing for information.

Instead of trying to find out why I don’t trust him, he chose to deflect and manipulate me into answering his question. I could’ve gone back and forth with him which is what he wanted me to do and that would lead to escalated voices with him pointing the finger at me to make me wrong followed by calling me crazy and other names, however, I didn’t because I’ve been down this rabbit hole with him before and I’m not doing it again. His bait didn’t work. If he ever wants to explore why I don’t trust him, we can do so, however, until then, my personal life is off-limits. Since when do I have to answer every question asked of me? I don’t and neither do you.

manipulate

In another instance, I shared some information with a group of people, and I let them know that I won’t be discussing any of it with them because they are committed to misunderstanding me and making me wrong. I shared the information with them because I can’t do anything about it but perhaps, they can. What I shared doesn’t need further discussion with me. They don’t need my participation to investigate what I shared.

One response I received was a Bible verse and an accusation that I’m destroying unity amongst the group because I refuse to discuss it when the reality is there is zero unity amongst this group of people; zero! Sidebar: I hate it when Christian people use scripture to manipulate you. I wouldn’t care if this person quoted every Bible verse from Genesis to Revelation, I remained firm in my decision not to discuss it. Her response and accusation made me wrong.

manipulate

This is no different than the first scenario. If someone I care about; keywords, “someone I care about” said to me they refuse to discuss a matter with me because they see me as someone who is committed to misunderstanding them and making them wrong, that would give me pause. In addition, if I cared about the content of the email, I would focus on that, not tearing down the messenger. I might think to myself, wow, something must really be wrong for her to take the time to share such a detailed email.

Something was terribly wrong and continues to be terribly wrong but guess what, after this weekend, I’ve completely washed my hands of it. There will be no more emails or texts. Sometimes you just have to be done. Not mad, not upset. Just done!

manipulate
Serenity Prayer

As I said up top, trust is an integral part of any relationship. There is no relationship without it. Deflecting, blaming, manipulating, name-calling and scapegoating only make matters worse. There’s no room for any of it if healthy relationships are the goal.

In an article titled, Psychological Deflection, the author says, “Countless studies show that all groups (family, job, friends, etc.) have their own “guilty party.“  It’s that one person that everyone blames even though it is not always her/his fault. Once someone becomes the guilty party, practically, the group will attribute all the failures of each member to that one specific person, in order to defend their infallible image.”

So, here are the takeaways:

  • Like me, you don’t have to answer every question asked of you. It’s your life to share with whom you choose. You have a choice. Don’t let anyone make you think otherwise.
  • Talking to people who are committed to misunderstanding you and making you wrong is an exercise in futility. Please don’t waste your time.
  • Manipulation, psychological deflection and scapegoating have no place in healthy relationships. P.S. Scapegoating is the practice of singling out one child, employee or member of a group of peers for unmerited negative treatment or blame.
  • Without trust, there is no relationship. Either work at rebuilding trust or move along. There are 7 billion people on the planet. Focus on finding your people and leave those people alone.
  • Actions speak louder than words. When someone cares, it shows.

Something to think about…

What say you? Any difficult relationships in your life? How do you navigate them? Share your tips and tricks in the comments. 

Here are 2 things I’d like you to do now:

1. Leave a comment below

2. Share this post if you like it

{ 19 comments… read them below or add one }

Trina Taylor January 13, 2020

And what would be so wrong if you wanted to be mysterious? He sounds abusive! Good on you for noticing what could’ve happened and stopping it dead in its tracks. And yea, using the Bible to manipulate others is a no for me too.

Navigating difficult relationships is difficult enough without abuse. I don’t accept abuse of any kind from anyone. I walk away.

Reply

Linda Stoll January 14, 2020

Oh Yvonne, you’ve given us such substantial food for thought here, so much wisdom. I’ll be back later to reread these truths.

Bless you …

Reply

Michele Morin January 14, 2020

For years, I lived a boundary-less life, thinking it was the Jesus-way, but I’ve grown into a better understanding of who he is and what he expects. Jesus had boundaries when he was in a body, and he did not allow himself to be manipulated.
As usual, Yvonne, you have made me think.
Michele Morin recently posted…Chew on the Truth–and Transform Your LifeMy Profile

Reply

Yvonne Chase January 15, 2020

@Michele,

Thank you for reminding me that Jesus had boundaries. The Jesus way being taught today by many encourages abuse and puts many of us in situations that simply do not serve us well.
Yvonne Chase recently posted…Manipulators Will Manipulate You If You Let ThemMy Profile

Reply

Laurie January 14, 2020

I like your words about trust, Yvonne. It does take years to build and seconds to tear down. I do think it can be rebuilt over time, but not in an instant and the cracks where it was mended may always be visible. You are your own person and I admire that!
Laurie recently posted…The Stubborn Promise of HopeMy Profile

Reply

Yvonne Chase January 15, 2020

@Laurie,

I wish I could take credit for those words but I can’t. It’s a quote I’ve seen all over social media that works well for this post.

And thanks for the compliment. Being my own person comes at a high cost yet it is so worth it.
Yvonne Chase recently posted…Manipulators Will Manipulate You If You Let ThemMy Profile

Reply

Theresa Boedeker January 14, 2020

Oh yes, I know of someone who is the family scapegoat. They are blamed for everything. When very little is their fault. So sad. Because people that blame others will never see any change that the person makes. They don’t allow others to change.

I was taught as a child to answer other people. Explain. But now I am learning, just like you, some people don’t need an answer. That I don’t have to tell them what they are asking. Because they are not trying to help anyone but themselves. And by making you wrong, they still are not right.

Like a friend says, don’t let them hook you. Or they will reel you in like a fish and bang your head.
Theresa Boedeker recently posted…Sock Solutions that BedazzleMy Profile

Reply

Yvonne Chase January 15, 2020

@Theresa,

Scapegoating is EVIL! Unfortunately, it’s my life. You’re right, within the family context, the scapegoat is blamed for everything when very little, very little is their fault.
Yvonne Chase recently posted…Manipulators Will Manipulate You If You Let ThemMy Profile

Reply

Jeanne Takenaka January 14, 2020

Yvonne, you’re right. Trust is integral to any relationship of depth. We’ve gone back and forth in teaching our boys how to become trustworthy. And, I’ve come to the place where I’m okay with not having to explain some of my decisions to people who may not know me well enough to understand the why’s behind them. And who haven’t earned the right to know my Why’s. Great post today!
Jeanne Takenaka recently posted…Waiting: When the Waiting is HardMy Profile

Reply

Yvonne Chase January 18, 2020

@Jeanne,

I love what you say here; “I’ve come to a place where I’m okay with not explaining some of my decisions to people who may not know me well enough to understand the why’s behind them.” Exactly!
Yvonne Chase recently posted…Manipulators Will Manipulate You If You Let ThemMy Profile

Reply

Michelle January 14, 2020

Excellent post! I am fortunate in that I don’t have anyone like that in my life since I retired. Some of the worst manipulators I know have been coworkers.

Michelle
http://mybijoulifeonline.com

Reply

Patsy Burnette January 15, 2020

Relationships are so important! We all need them, and we need them to be healthy. Thanks for this thought-provoking post.

Thank you for linking up at InstaEncouragements!

Reply

Yvonne Chase January 16, 2020

@Patsy,

100%! We all need relationships and they definitely need to be healthy.
Yvonne Chase recently posted…Manipulators Will Manipulate You If You Let ThemMy Profile

Reply

Karen Del Tatto January 15, 2020

Thanks for sharing these thoughtful points regarding manipulators and manipulation.

I loved your point that it’s your choice what questions you answer when asked. That is soo true! I hate when I have determined not to share something and then the person seems to get it out of me anyway. I realize this is on me. But after reading your post, I will re-think that and not be manipulated.
Karen Del Tatto recently posted…A Key Scripture Verse that WILL make you an Overcomer in the New YearMy Profile

Reply

Yvonne Chase January 18, 2020

@Karen,

For whatever reason, we feel like we have to answer every question asked of us. We don’t and we don’t need to feel bad about it. Anyone who tries to make us feel bad about our choice is a horrible person. Don’t be manipulated by anyone. Only share what you feel comfortable sharing.
Yvonne Chase recently posted…Manipulators Will Manipulate You If You Let ThemMy Profile

Reply

Lisa notes January 16, 2020

“Sometimes you just have to be done. Not mad, not upset. Just done!” I couldn’t agree with you more, Yvonne. Even Jesus told his disciples to walk away when their work in a place wasn’t welcomed. Being done is sometimes the most loving thing we can do, for the other person and for ourselves.

Reply

Yvonne Chase January 18, 2020

@Lisa,

That’s absolutely right. Matthew 10:14 says, “If anyone will not welcome you or listen to your words, leave that home or town and shake the dust off your feet.” Being done is the most loving thing I can do for myself.
Yvonne Chase recently posted…Manipulators Will Manipulate You If You Let ThemMy Profile

Reply

Leslie January 17, 2020

So much wisdom in this post! There are so many times I wish I could go back and just not answer people’s questions. So many of us have been raised with such a horror of being rude or hurting people’s feelings and that can lead to poor boundaries. I am working on mine!
Leslie recently posted…When to Say Yes and When to Say No: Respecting Your Spiritual GiftsMy Profile

Reply

Yvonne Chase January 18, 2020

@Leslie,

I had poor boundaries at one time, however, today is a new day. I support you as you work on your boundaries. And yes, many of us have been raised with such a horror of being rude or hurting people’s feelings.
Yvonne Chase recently posted…Manipulators Will Manipulate You If You Let ThemMy Profile

Reply

Leave a Comment

CommentLuv badge

{ 1 trackback }

Previous post:

Next post: