10 Behaviors That Reveal Someone Is a Manipulator (And How to Defend Yourself)


Life itself is difficult and you don’t need another person next to you always bringing you down. Thus, when we make friends, we want to spend time with those who lift us up when we are sad instead of making us even more miserable. When we create relationships, we care about that person and we want the same from them. But it becomes difficult when we make friends with a manipulator.

It can be quite hard to tell if a person is a manipulator from the first sight. You need to spend more time with people in order to find out what their true intentions are. However, sometimes it is enough to tell if a person has some hidden intentions if after you meet them, you feel bad.

However, it is not easy to get rid of such people from our lives when we let them in. They simply don’t let go. They understand that you have become their toy of manipulation and as hard as you try to stay away from them, they will find a way how to reach you. Sounds creepy, doesn’t it?

If you want to know if such people exist in your life, below are mentioned the main things manipulators do.

  1. They make you believe that their actions are right. Although you may see their actions as wrong, toxic people will make you believe that it is the only choice they had. They will make it look as if it is not their fault and they didn’t do it on purpose.
  2. They play the “dumb” game. When they are being accused of something they have done, manipulators usually pretend not to know what is going on. They hide their actions by playing the “dumb” game. When they ask your advice about something and they don’t agree with it, instead of being grateful for your input, they will tell you how wrong you are and it is their life anyways, thus, they will do whatever they want.
  3. They lie. Even if they tell half-truths, it is still a lie. They usually choose to tell half true half lie because it makes them feel better that they didn’t lie completely. Instead of owning their actions and taking responsibility, manipulators lie.
  4. They make you feel guilty. When you are busy and don’t have time for such people, they will make you feel guilty that whenever you need them they are always there. Thus, what you do is rush to help them because their guilt trip works on you and makes you believe that it is actually your fault that you can’t be there when they need you.
  5. They constantly change the topic. Manipulators are liars but they don’t realize that their lies come back to hurt them. When you confront them why they said one thing or another, they usually change the subject. Also, they change subjects when you talk about yourself or your life as manipulators are not interested in you.
  6. They often use insults. People don’t like to spend time with them because they are mean and rude. They offend other people and don’t care about it. They can go as far as they want in order to appear higher than others.
  7. They enjoy being victims. Manipulators need sympathy from others. They like to portray themselves as victims in order to get people’s attention. They can make you tell them something you don’t really think or even buy things for them. The main thing here is that they can do anything in order to get what they want.
  8. They don’t have a lot of people in their lives. Usually manipulators don’t have a lot of family members they keep contact with. Because people refuse to spend time with them, manipulators don’t have many friends. Their behavior makes people stay away from them. They have low self-confidence and the only way how to strengthen it is to make others feel bad as it is the only way how manipulators feel superior.
  9. They blame others for their mistakes. It is one of the easiest ways how to spot a manipulator. If you are sure that he has done something wrong and when someone confronts him he tries to blame others, he is a manipulator. They make other people be responsible for their bad deeds. You can’t force them to accept that they are guilty.
  10. They can turn on you quickly. It is possible that you may enjoy the company of a manipulator. However, you shouldn’t get attached to such a person. Remember that he is being nice to you because he wants to get something from you. They become your friend only for their own advantage.

There are some ways how you can deal with a manipulative person.

  1. Words “I need”. When manipulators hear the words “I need”, they feel that the tables are turned. Manipulative people are concerned with their own needs and when they hear a different version, they have no escape. For example, you may say “I need you to stop treating me this way and if you can’t do it, we won’t be friends anymore”.
  2. Words “You need”. Because manipulators are focused on their own needs, they become active listeners when you start a conversation with the words “You need”. They don’t want to be told what they need to do. For example, when you say “You need to back off”, they will understand that you confront them and they are likely to stop their behavior which is bothering you.
  3. Say nothing at all. When manipulators push your buttons too much, the easiest way to escape is not to engage in any conversation with them and merely walk away. When you fight with them, you put yourself on their level. You know better than that. Any confrontation you get in with a manipulator wastes your time and energy.

It can be quite difficult to be around such people. You think you can change them because you really enjoy their company. However, only they can change themselves but the truth is that they rarely want to do so.


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