After 1975, when Armageddon had not arrived as the Watchtower had predicted, we Jehovah’s Witnesses were told from the platform and in publications that it was only some of us who thought the end would come specifically that year. They told us that the Society had never published or said that Armageddon was due. I remember coming away from some of those talks, shaking my head, and wondering if I was crazy.
Other times, I would remember something published in the Watchtower, even remembering where it was on the page, but when going to find it in the Bound volumes, it was gone. I thought I was crazy every time. After I left the Witnesses, I discovered that the bound volumes contained edited versions of articles to reflect “new light.” But back then, I just thought I was losing it, or that I had a bad memory.
Gaslighting also happens in abusive relationships: my second husband used to do this all the time. One time, he insisted that a certain singer never sang a song. A few days later, I heard it on the car radio and told him to listen. He insisted he never said that the singer had not sung that song: crazy-making.
I have had friends, a couple of bosses, parents, a couple of husbands, and a religion that all did this to me. It is important to learn what gaslighting is. Learn how to confront those who practice it if you can. And then get as far from people who do this as possible. You don’t need anyone or any group or religion making you feel crazy.
Note: here is the blog explaining gaslighting which inspired Lee to write the above.
What do you think about this article? Do you agree? Do you have a story about gaslighting that you’d like to share? We’d love to hear from you!