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Focus: Emotional manipulation

How often have you tried to express your frustration or disappointment at someone’s bad behaviour, just to hear, “Stop over-reacting” or “You are too emotional!”. Such phrases are often used, whether intentionally or unknowingly, as a tool for emotional manipulation, after having said things that are clearly offensive. Have you ever been a victim of emotional manipulation? Join the debate.

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  • Akshaya ParthasarathyImage Credit: Supplied
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Gulf News

15:45 Gulf News: Women are easier targets of emotional manipulation.

15:47 Prasad Warrier: I partially agree. Women are mothers and are generally soft-hearted. A person they feel close to can easily manipulate them. But I also feel today’s young women have become more practical and do not get easily manipulated.

15:51 Aisha Naseem: It is very stereotypical to say women are easily manipulated. It isn’t specific to a gender.

15:53 Shivshankar K.T.: If we can control our mind, we can control everything. Emotions should not rule us when we react. Reacting to bad behavior is our right but at the same time it is not a license to interfere in each and every thing that is happening around you.

15:54 Shweta Madhu: I agree with Aisha Naseem. Some people, regardless of gender can be quite vulnerable and are easy targets. Today’s generation is considered to be much more practical and often do not give in to their emotions, which means that they aren’t that easy to manipulate.

15:55 Akshaya Parthasarathy: Yes. Everybody can be a target of emotional manipulation. There is no gender-bias on who is the easier target. It is only a matter of how one reacts to it.

15:56 Gulf News: Are women the weaker sex? Or is it just a fact that is harped to give society a sense of power?

15:58 Akshaya Parthasarathy: The media often portrays women as the weaker sex. This need not be true in everyday life.

15:58 Shivshankar K.T.: There was a time when women were considered the weaker sex. But now there is no justification for anybody to think so. I strongly believe that they are equal and if at all anybody still think otherwise then they are living in a fool’s paradise.

16:01 Gulf News: Those who defend themselves by saying things like, “You are overreacting” simply use offence as a form of defence.

16:06 Shweta Madhu: People always try to hide their rude remarks. Sometimes, they say things without realising the repurcussions. Generally, being sincere and apologising would go a long way instead of trying to hide the remark, because that often leads to bigger arguments. Once someone says something, if it is the truth, they should stick to it and not cover it up. Also, raising their views without trying to upset the other person is important. Sometimes, saying things can hurt someone but maybe using a better approach is the key.

16:06 Akshaya Parthasarathy: In certain cases, yes, they may used it as a defence, but sometimes the person might have not intentionally said it. The use of such phrases is like a reflex action nowadays.

16:09 Lakshmi Ajay: It is frequent practice to make the accuser the victim and thus turn around the situation in which the person on the wrong end comes on top. This is what happens while making such statements. But in some cases there are people who do overreact to such situations and turn it into a huge issue.

16:09 Gulf News: Most people avoid sharing their true feelings openly out of fear of being labelled ‘crazy’.

16:09 Shivshankar K.T.: True most of the people are not only scared of being labelled crazy but also are worried that they will be unnecessarily pulled into unwanted trouble if they express their views. According to me, we should always express our true feelings whenever we think that it can make a difference.

16:12 Apoorva Arya: In today’s generation, people really are scared of expressing themselves openly, and saying what they feel is right. And that is because of the ‘Who knows what the society will think of us’ attitude. If they do speak their heart out, they are supposedly rude and crazy.

16:13 Akshaya Parthasarathy: To bottle up your emotions is not really a healthy practice. Every once in a while, telling it to someone would make you feel cathartic. A wise decision is where you can be happy. The fear of being labelled eventually will have it’s disastrous consequences, too.

16:13 Prasad Warrier: But to some part, Mr Shivshankar’s point cannot be fully taken up. If we raise our voice against someone’s bad behaviour, it might not be taken up in positive sense to improve themselves. Instead, it can reflect badly on us.

16:13 Shweta Madhu: Voicing our opinions is different from being completely honest with everyone, even if they are strangers. Voicing opinions makes you a better citizen whereas sometimes, it’s best to just hold your thoughts on someone for a while. Many people these days won’t be truthful about their emotions as they always care about what other people might think of them. Being labelled is a big worry.

16:14 Aisha Naseem: I agree with Shweta. It is true people have become very materialistic. But saying what you really feel is a part of staying who you are and staying true to yourself as an identity. What someone might think shouldn’t be a thought that bothers you. It might be that the other person may be feeling the same, but just as you are, is uncomfortable or not sure to talk about the matter.

- Compiled by Huda Tabrez/
Community Web Editor


Gulf News asked: Do you feel you have been emotionally manipulated?

Yes 92%

No 8%


Gulf News asked: Do you feel you have been emotionally manipulated?

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