Emotional manipulation

Other Names:
Emotional abuse
Emotional blackmail
Moral blackmail
Emotional bombardment
Love bombing

In psychology, manipulation is defined as subterfuge designed to influence or control another, usually in an underhanded manner which facilitates one's personal aims. Methods used to distort the individual's perception of reality may include seduction, suggestion, persuasion and blackmail to induce submission. Usage of the term varies depending on which behavior is specifically included, whether referring to the general population or used in clinical contexts. Manipulation is generally considered a dishonest form of social influence as it is used at the expense of others.

Manipulative tendencies may derive from cluster B personality disorders such as narcissistic, antisocial personality disorder, and borderline personality disorder (usually by feigning distress or using flattery, gaslighting, emotional blackmail or love-bombing or seduction to obtain affection or to avoid abandonment). Manipulation is also correlated with higher levels of dark empathy, emotional intelligence, and is a chief component of the personality construct dubbed Machiavellianism.

Broader Problems:
Reduced By:
Compassion fatigue
Related UN Sustainable Development Goals:
GOAL 3: Good Health and Well-beingGOAL 16: Peace and Justice Strong Institutions
Problem Type:
C: Cross-sectoral problems
Date of last update
04.02.2021 – 16:41 CET