Was I being manipulated? - Social Anxiety Forum
 
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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-08-2020, 06:29 AM Thread Starter
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Was I being manipulated?


Hey guys! So I dated a guy for 3 months that I met on tinder. After a month and a half of knowing him, he wanted me to be his girlfriend, so i said i would but i was reluctant. In the back of my head, I felt like a month and a half was too soon and I told him this. I also told him that maybe we should wait a few more months to get to know eachother better. But he told me that society tells you to wait a certain amount of time that might not be necessary. He also said that he needed to call me something if we were going to date. I told him that if anyone ask what are status is then he should say that we are just talking. He did not like that answer because he wanted to call me his girlfriend so I just assumed that I was being ridiculous so I let him be my boyfriend. But when I look back at this I feel like I was a little manipulated. Even before we broke up, I got the vibe that he could be manipulative even though I liked him. The reason why I wanted to wait a while before potentially calling him my boyfriend was because I was convinced that I wasn't ready for a serious relationship due to some mental issues. I told him that there were some things I wanted to fix about myself before having a relationship. He told me that I will never be truly "ready" to have a relationship and that we are all just works in progress and that we could grow together as we solve our problems. For the record, I was diagnosed with asbergers so I have difficulty understanding people's emotions and motives. I also have issues understanding my own emotions. Because of this, I just did what he told me was normal, but i think i might have been manipulated into having a relationship. Or I could be wrong about this. Other strange things about him include following jordan peterson. I looked the guy up and he kind of gives me bad vibes. Anyway, please share your thoughts!!
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-08-2020, 06:48 AM
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It doesn’t sound like too much manipulation unless it ended for an absurd reason.
but don’t let any guy force you to do something u don’t want to do. If you barely knew him and you weren’t ready he should have respected that and took your first answer. Sometimes “some” guys will tell you anything they think you want to hear to get what they want.
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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-08-2020, 07:03 AM
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I've been in a similar situation before. I'm not sure it's manipulation just sometimes you're not moving at the same pace. If you're not still together with him though from experience I'm not sure it will work out. I notice you don't really bring up any positives about him in your post either. For me I was always kind of not entirely invested for a number of reasons and he ended up falling in love with me and then got really upset when we broke up and I was sad for him but didn't miss the relationship at all. Being on such completely different pages is weird and not a very positive experience for anyone involved. Also he took it really badly and acted very immaturely after we broke up.

edit: nevermind I missed the part where you said you broke up, that was probably for the best.

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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-08-2020, 07:15 AM Thread Starter
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I've been in a similar situation before. I'm not sure it's manipulation just sometimes you're not moving at the same pace. If you're not still together with him though from experience I'm not sure it will work out. I notice you don't really bring up any positives about him in your post either. For me I was always kind of not entirely invested for a number of reasons and he ended up falling in love with me and then got really upset when we broke up and I was sad for him but didn't miss the relationship at all. Being on such completely different pages is weird and not a very positive experience for anyone involved. Also he took it really badly and acted very immaturely after we broke up.

edit: nevermind I missed the part where you said you broke up, that was probably for the best.
Yes, this is exactly what it is. I was not that emotionally invested. I think its because I dont get attached to people very easily. It takes me a while to really care for someone. When we broke up, I was disappointed but I did not shed a tear. Kind of wonder why I'm so indifferent to things and people.
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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-08-2020, 07:20 AM
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It sounds like he was just focused on what he thought, wasn't listening or considering you very well. No way to know if he was manipulating intentionally or simply arrogantly arguing for what he thought would be best for you.

And if he likes Jordan Peterson, well, all I know about the guy is he's known for arrogantly arguing that everybody else should think like him and opposing rights for people different from him. So that would fit for a person who's self-centered and has trouble considering the views of people who have different experiences/thoughts.

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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-08-2020, 07:31 AM
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Originally Posted by Infinitegalaxycat View Post
Yes, this is exactly what it is. I was not that emotionally invested. I think its because I dont get attached to people very easily. It takes me a while to really care for someone. When we broke up, I was disappointed but I did not shed a tear. Kind of wonder why I'm so indifferent to things and people.
Might be a symptom of autism (like see this example, though it's a guy and I think guys with autism are more severely effected socially based on neurological studies and observation,) or just a personality trait. I'm not diagnosed with autism but have traits as well, also traits of schizoid personality disorder. I've noticed I often become more attached to people from a distance where my imagination is very involved but then with people I regularly interact with it's more uncommon.

I think this kind of thing is also related to attachment patterns like anxious-preoccupied, dismissive-avoidant, fearful-avoidant:

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Securely attached adults have been “linked to a high need for achievement and a low fear of failure (Elliot & Reis, 2003)”. They will positively approach a task with the goal of mastering it and have an appetite for exploration in achievement settings (Elliot & Reis, 2003). Research shows that securely attached adults have a “low level of personal distress and high levels of concern for others”.[85] Due to their high rates of self-efficacy, securely attached adults typically do not hesitate to remove a person having a negative impact from problematic situations they are facing.[85] This calm response is representative of the securely attached adult's emotionally regulated response to threats that many studies have supported in the face of diverse situations. Adult secure attachment comes from an individual's early connection with their caregiver(s), genes and their romantic experiences.[86]

Within romantic relationships, a securely attached adult will appear in the following ways: excellent conflict resolution, mentally flexible, effective communicators, avoidance of manipulation, comfortable with closeness without fearfulness of being enmeshed, quickly forgiving, viewing sex and emotional intimacy as one, believing they can positively impact their relationship, and caring for their partner how they want to be cared for. In summation, they are great partners who treat their spouses very well, as they are not afraid to give positively and ask for their needs to be met. Securely attached adults believe that there are “many potential partners that would be responsive to their needs”, and if they come across an individual who is not meeting their needs, they will typically lose interest very quickly. In a study comparing secure-secure and secure-various attachment style relationships, there was no fluctuation in positive relational functioning. However, in any combination of two partners with attachment styles outside of secure, the relationships showed high levels of negative relationship functioning. This research indicates that it only takes one securely attached partner within a romantic relationship to maintain healthy, emotional relationship functioning.[86]

Anxious-preoccupied adults seek high levels of intimacy, approval and responsiveness from partners, becoming overly dependent. They tend to be less trusting, have less positive views about themselves and their partners, and may exhibit high levels of emotional expressiveness, worry and impulsiveness in their relationships. The anxiety that adults feel prevents the establishment of satisfactory defense exclusion. Thus, it is possible that individuals that have been anxiously attached to their attachment figure or figures have not been able to develop sufficient defenses against separation anxiety. Because of their lack of preparation these individuals will then overreact to the anticipation of separation or the actual separation from their attachment figure. The anxiety comes from an individual's intense and/or unstable relationship that leave the anxious or preoccupied individual relatively defenseless.[87] Adults with this attachment style tend to look way too far into things, whether that's a text message or a face-to-face conversation. Their thoughts and actions can lead to a painful cycle of self-fulfilling prophecies and even self-sabotage. They often seek a dismissive-avoidant partner.[88]

Dismissive-avoidant adults desire a high level of independence, often appearing to avoid attachment altogether. They view themselves as self-sufficient, invulnerable to attachment feelings and not needing close relationships. They tend to suppress their feelings, dealing with conflict by distancing themselves from partners of whom they often have a poor opinion. Adults lack the interest of forming close relationships and maintaining emotional closeness with the people around them. They have a great amount of distrust in others but at the same time possess a positive model of self, they would prefer to invest in their own ego skills. Because of their distrust they cannot be convinced that other people have the ability to deliver emotional support. They try to create high levels of self-esteem by investing disproportionately in their abilities or accomplishments. These adults maintain their positive views of self, based on their personal achievements and competence rather than searching for and feeling acceptance from others. These adults will explicitly reject or minimize the importance of emotional attachment and passively avoid relationships when they feel as though they are becoming too close. They strive for self-reliance and independence. When it comes to the opinions of others about themselves, they are very indifferent and are relatively hesitant to positive feedback from their peers. Dismissive avoidance can also be explained as the result of defensive deactivation of the attachment system to avoid potential rejection, or genuine disregard for interpersonal closeness.[89]

Fearful-avoidant adults have mixed feelings about close relationships, both desiring and feeling uncomfortable with emotional closeness. They tend to mistrust their partners and view themselves as unworthy. Like dismissive-avoidant adults, fearful-avoidant adults tend to seek less intimacy, suppressing their feelings.[90][91][92][93]
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Attachment_theory

If you're more avoidant you might attract more anxious-preoccupied people too.

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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-08-2020, 07:43 AM
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These days a month and a half seems long enough because of how fast some really want to claim the other as their boyfriend/girlfriend. I will say that he seemed to have stepped some boundaries by not respecting the fact that you weren't ready, and at least you were being honest about it. The part that you felt like you didn't really get to know each other regardless of how long you've seen each other is a bit of a red flag.
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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-08-2020, 08:25 AM
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Just based on this alone I wouldn't say he was being manipulative. It sounds like he was just trying to have you see things from his perspective and convince you to be his girlfriend.

If he had given you an ultimatum then I would consider that manipulative
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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-08-2020, 11:03 AM
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Just sounds like you two were moving at different paces. I mean, I understand him wanting some clarity after a month and a half, but I think he seemed SLIGHTLY pushy.

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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-08-2020, 11:07 AM
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people are kind of manipulative. you have to maintain your boundaries which you did. but yeah it doesnt sound like he was taking advantage of you, just normal level of manipulation.

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post #11 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-08-2020, 11:40 AM
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When is it alright to call someone manipulative? I wonder were we draw the line between being manipulative and putting urself first.

Is a sales man manipulative? What a sales person often tries to do is to either sell you things you don't need or sell them at a higher price than necessary. Of course a sales person themselves wouldn't think that they did any bad, even though they will have to use phrases such as "Don't miss out, you need this". They do that for self gain. They don't necessarily have bad intentions with what they are doing, but the outcome itself isn't necessarily positive for you either. If they manage to sell you a lot of stuff you don't need at a high price the company and them will give themselves a tap on the shoulder for doing so. If the company wants to get bigger and strive they do however have to do stuff like this.

Capitalism is kind of built on this. In today's society I think that being manipulative is a very normal behavior, and I think the words "narcissism" and "manipulative" is being thrown around a bit too much.

About this guy: I think he wanted you, and he tried very hard to argue for you to become his girlfriend.
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post #12 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-08-2020, 01:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Infinitegalaxycat View Post
Other strange things about him include following jordan peterson. I looked the guy up and he kind of gives me bad vibes.
Lmao

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post #13 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-08-2020, 02:10 PM
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Jordan Peterson strikes again
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post #14 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-08-2020, 03:16 PM
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If something feels not right, then it's not right & could be the tip of an ice-berg, this sounds more pushy/controlling bullying type behavior than manipulative.






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post #15 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-09-2020, 03:08 AM
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Manipulation requires lying on his end for the most part, which I don't think he did. He just made you see things his way. But he does sound pushy and sensing lots of hints that he's a controlling person. So it was probably for the best that you've broken up with him.


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I told him that there were some things I wanted to fix about myself before having a relationship. He told me that I will never be truly "ready" to have a relationship and that we are all just works in progress and that we could grow together as we solve our problems.

Although I do think what he said here is true to an extent. It will be unfair to yourself to impede yourself from pursuing things because you feel you're too broken for it. We will always be broken in some ways or other. If we wait for it until we are fixed of all of those things, it will probably be never.

The truth is strictly what the ones in power perceives it to be.

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post #16 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-28-2020, 02:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Infinitegalaxycat View Post
Yes, this is exactly what it is. I was not that emotionally invested. I think its because I dont get attached to people very easily. It takes me a while to really care for someone. When we broke up, I was disappointed but I did not shed a tear. Kind of wonder why I'm so indifferent to things and people.
I suffered from awful depersonalization derilaziation when my social anxiety used to be real bad, you might have it slighly
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