January 15, 2019


The experience of divorce is often difficult, even between partners who don’t display obvious or intense emotions, or employ dangerous and damaging communication techniques. Divorcing a spouse with extreme emotional issues -- often so intense that they dominate nearly every aspect of your lives together -- can take the normal challenges of divorce and transform them into severe and lasting trauma.

One of the most complicated personalities to deal with during a legal separation is what is know as a “gaslighter.” At Raleigh Law Center we have seen this personality type again and again during our experience litigating high conflict family law cases. Because a gaslighter is so dangerous, and so hard to pin down, we think it is important to put forth some of what we’ve learned, and to give you some basic guidelines on how to divorce a gaslighting spouse in Raleigh, NC.


A lot of people may have heard of gaslighting, but it remains a murky concept for most of us. The reason for this is that gaslighting goes far beyond your normal experience of other people. In some ways, victims of gaslighting can’t bring themselves to believe that another person would do the things that a gaslighter habitually does.

Gaslighting is defined as an array of psychological and deceptive techniques designed to make someone question the very foundations of his/her perceptions of the world. In other words, gaslighters find ways to break down your normal feelings of sanity, and make you doubt that what you know is true actually is true.

It sounds difficult to believe that someone could rock someone’s basic perceptions of reality. If you are a sober person who doesn’t drink or use illegal drugs, then how could someone convince you otherwise?

Gaslighters have a range of techniques they use to loosen your confidence in what you know is true. They will put small wedges of doubt in your mind, and then slowly increase that wedge until you begin to question your ability to make a good decision. Or they will make huge, dramatic claims about something, repeat those claims, increase the emotional aggression and intensity of those claims, until you stop trying to counter what it is that they are saying.

In the sobriety example, gaslighters accuse you of drinking too much. They show you photos of wine bottles and of you drunk. They convince your family and friends that you have a drinking problem. They make you defend your position. They make you suspicious that you are being duped, drugged, or tricked.   Victims of gaslighting find themselves defending the most outrageous claims and accusations. Victims of gaslighting find themselves spiraling, always on the defensive and constantly trying to “prove” their position in the face of these gaslighters. Gaslighters control their victims by keeping them off balance and constantly on the defensive.

Some of the defining factors that make someone a gaslighter are that they will lie about things that are clearly not true, they will tell huge and blatant lies, they will lie while accusing others of lying, and they won’t admit fault even in the face of explicit and incontrovertible evidence. Gaslighters lie so often, and explode so violently when challenged, that it becomes easier to just agree with them in order to let things calm down. Over time, this strategy of agreement in order to avoid high conflict can erode your own sense of what is real and what isn’t.

At that point, you are living in a relationship with a gaslighter and it’s time to regain control and get out.


One of the most damaging techniques gaslighters use is to separate their victims from anyone who would argue against what the gaslighter has said. They’ll attack friends and family and isolate you so that all you hear is their warped perspective, leaving you increasingly more vulnerable to their lies, threats, and bullying. Gaslighters make you feel threatened -- and afraid to seek help. This is exactly why you need powerful allies when you decide enough is enough.

Our long-running experience helping people separate from gaslighters has shown us how important it is to have a full set of tools ready so that you can fight back against a gaslighter’s unethical weapons. We will not hesitate to apply for restraining orders against gaslighting spouses. We will not hesitate to gather evidence of exactly how they lie, even when they lie to authorities and in sworn depositions. We will not back down against spouses who try to make you question your own sanity. The role of an attorney is to seek what’s best for a client. That begins with advising you on what you’re dealing with, and making sure you use every single means available to protect yourself as you go through the process of divorcing a gaslighting spouse.


At Raleigh Law Center, we truly care about our clients. We are not a high-volume, churn-and-burn law firm that sees thousands of clients and offers them cookie-cutter legal representation. We truly listen. We learn your issues from every vantage point, and we offer specialized advice and consultation that fits your exact situation and needs.

Raleigh Law Center focuses on clients who are going through difficult, high conflict, damaging divorces. We know how important it is to have excellent, dedicated and committed representation that will take the time to help you see every single option you have for protecting yourself, your family, and for getting what you deserve. Raleigh Law Center remains committed to you even when the gaslighter goes to great lengths to deny your version of events, and keeps you away from what you deserve.

Don’t hesitate to reach out for help against a gaslighter. Call us today to set a time to talk, so you can see and hear firsthand just how committed we are to your safety, protection, and your rights in a divorce proceeding. Let us prove to you that Raleigh Law Center is the right firm to choose when you’re dealing with someone most people don’t even understand.

Don’t fight a gaslighter alone. Raleigh Law Center will help you fight for your family and protect your rights.

We concentrate in family law and domestic violence. We aggressively and effectively represent clients in all aspects of family law including negotiating settlements and litigating cases in Family Court, Domestic Violence Court, District and Superior Courts.
(919) 268-4070
9380 Falls of Neuse Rd Ste #201
Raleigh, NC 27615
(919) 720-4838

We concentrate in family law
and domestic violence. We aggressively and effectively represent clients in all aspects of family law including negotiating settlements and litigating cases in Family Court, Domestic Violence Court, District and Superior Courts.
(919) 268-4070
9380 Falls of Neuse Rd Ste #201
Raleigh, NC 27615
(919) 720-4838
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