1. They’re emotionally abusive. A manipulator is indefinitely an emotionally abusive person. They are unpredictable with their spouts of anger and known to lash out fortuitously. They’re typically short-tempered and you never know what frame of mind they’ll be in. Their moods are drastically inconsistent and your moods will start to become reliant on theirs. You’ll find yourself playing the victim of their abusive ways, but you’ve become so habituated to it that you don’t even think twice. Emotional abuse is still abuse.
2. You’re apologizing for things you didn’t do. After an argument you’re the one always doing the apologizing. You stop and ask yourself, “why am I saying sorry when I wasn’t the one in the wrong?” A manipulator is sufficient at placing the blame on anyone else besides themselves. In fact, they’re so good at it that they’ll have you almost certain that you’re the problem.
3. You’re putting in all the work. Dating a master manipulator often means that you’ll be the one doing all of the “dirty work” in the relationship. Making plans, texting, calling, etc. You will find yourself putting in every last bit of effort to keep the relationship alive.
4. They’re charming as fuck. A manipulator knows how to use their charm to get what they want. They know how to captivate in an alluring and charismatic way—and they’re damn good at it too. They know exactly what to do and what to say to keep you hooked. And if that isn’t the most fitting example of being manipulated then I don’t know what is.
5. They’re undependable. You’re unable to rely on them from the very beginning. A manipulator will be inconsistent and often times noticeably distant. They know how to portray themselves as being reliable in order to keep you around, but strictly on their terms. They’re incapable of communicating properly but it’s your fault for not knowing about the plans they never told you about. There will undoubtedly be a self-victimizing justification to go along with this.
6. They crave control. The control is always in their hands because they need to feel dominant. They are the one who will decide where the relationship is going. It’s their way or the highway and you’re just along for the ride. Control means power and a manipulator thrives off of both.
7. Change isn’t an option. They might alter their ways a tiny bit in order to please you, but they perpetually go back to their old ways once you’re satisfied. A manipulator cannot change because they don’t want to change. They don’t see anything immoral about their actions and they’ll wheedle you into believing the same.