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Digital Seminar

Gaslighting: Help Clients Escape and Rebuild from a Narcissist's Emotional Abuse

Stephanie Sarkis, PhD, NCC, DCMHS, LMHC
6 Hours 05 Minutes
Jan 26, 2024
Product Code:
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Digital Seminar
Never expires.


The manipulation is usually insidious and slow.

And working with clients experiencing narcissistic abuse (gaslighting), requires you to simultaneously understand the confusing nature of narcissistic behaviour AND the deep and painful wounds of the abuse survivor.

Victims of gaslighting often feel they’re unable to disclose the abuse, or even unaware of the abuse due to discrediting by the perpetrator as “crazy”. Clients are left feeling unsure of reality—trapped in a web of manipulation and control.

Watch Stephanie Sarkis, PhD, author of Gaslighting, who has helped thousands of clients identify gaslighting and extract themselves from unbearable suffering perpetrated by narcissists and sociopaths.

Dr. Sarkis will give you the tools needed to identify and treat the emotional abuse of gaslighting, and understand the behavior patterns of those inflicting the emotional abuse.

You’ll learn:

  • Top 10 questions for uncovering gaslighting abuse in your clients
  • To identify love bombing and hoovering
  • Signs and fallout from emotional abuse
  • The complexities of the grieving process when leaving a gaslighter
  • Tools to help clients rebuild self-awareness and emotional balance
  • And More!

Don’t let this underserved population of abuse go untreated. The quicker we can identify the signs and psychological ramifications of gaslighting, the sooner we can help clients rebuild their lives.

Purchase today!


Planning Committee Disclosure - No relevant relationships

All members of the PESI, Inc. planning committee have provided disclosures of financial relationships with ineligible organizations and any relevant non-financial relationships prior to planning content for this activity. None of the committee members had relevant financial relationships with ineligible companies or other potentially biasing relationships to disclose to learners.  For speaker disclosures, please see the faculty biography.


PESI Australia, in collaboration with PESI in the USA, offers quality online continuing professional development events from the leaders in the field at a standard recognized by professional associations including psychology, social work, occupational therapy, alcohol and drug professionals, counselling and psychotherapy. On completion of the training, a Professional Development Certificate is issued after the individual has answered and submitted a quiz and course evaluation. This program is worth 6.25 hours CPD for points calculation by your association.



Stephanie Sarkis, PhD, NCC, DCMHS, LMHC's Profile

Stephanie Sarkis, PhD, NCC, DCMHS, LMHC Related seminars and products

Dr. Stephanie Sarkis is a renowned therapist and leading expert on gaslighting and ADHD. With over two decades of experience as a clinician, author, and speaker, Dr. Sarkis has become a trusted voice in the fight against gaslighting and related forms of psychological manipulation. Her groundbreaking book, Gaslighting: Recognize Manipulative and Emotionally Abusive People – and Break Free, has become a must-read for anyone seeking to understand the devastating impact of gaslighting and how to heal from its effects. Dr. Sarkis is a frequent contributor to major media outlets including CNN, The Washington Post and Forbes. Dr. Sarkis a licensed mental health counselor, national certified counselor, AMHCA Diplomate and clinical specialist in child and adolescent counseling, and a Florida Supreme Court-certified family and circuit mediator. Her latest book Healing from Toxic Relationships is available now. Visit her website at



Speaker Disclosures:
Financial: Dr. Stephanie Moulton Sarkis maintains a private practice. She serves as a contributor to Forbes, The Huffington Post, and Psychology Today and is an advisory panel member for Evergreen Certifications. Dr. Sarkis is a facilitator for Collaborative Divorce. She receives royalties as a published author. She receives a speaking honorarium, recording, and book royalties from PESI, Inc. She has no relevant financial relationships with ineligible organizations.
Non-financial: Dr. Stephanie Moulton Sarkis is a professional expert for, part of the National Center for Learning Disabilities. She is a member of the Attention Deficit Disorder Association, American Mental Health Counselors Association, Children and Adults with Attention Deficit Disorder, and the National Board for Certified Counselors.



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  1. Utilize solution focused, cognitive behavioural therapy techniques to address victims of emotional abuse.
  2. Differentiate between abusive behaviours defined as “gaslighting”, poor communication, and other forms of emotional abuse.
  3. Evaluate the effectiveness of evidence based practices to address emotional abuse.
  4. Determine whether a client is experiencing complicated grief as a result of leaving their abuser using techniques from attachment and complicated grief therapy.
  5. Utilize clinical strategies from a trauma-informed perspective to identify vulnerabilities and trauma that abusers prey upon.
  6. Educate clients to identify potential abusive behaviour in future relationships.


A More Dangerous Form of Emotional Abuse

  • Potential for domestic homicide is higher
  • Lifetime attachment issues for children witnessing the abuse
  • Parental alienation
  • Chronic loss of self-esteem; higher suicide rates
  • Unpacking profile of perpetrator

Warning Signs and Assessment:

  • Vicious cycle of the trauma bond
  • Manipulating through fear, obligation & guilt
  • Reverse victim and offender
  • Healthy boundaries met with punishing behaviour
  • Punishing with stonewalling
  • Intermittent positive reinforcement (breadcrumbing)
  • Jekyll and Hyde personality

Evidence-Based Practices to Help Gaslighting Victim

  • CBT
    • Advanced cognitive restructuring for common distortions held by gaslighting victims
    • Activity scheduling to help victims of gaslighting reconnect with routines and stability
  • ACT
    • Confront uncomfortable feelings
    • Values clarification exercises to help clients find direction and motivation
    • Mindfulness exercises to help clients become aware of physical and emotional manifestations decrease dissociation
  • Bowen Family Systems Theory
    • Identify intergenerational trauma and patterns
    • Create genograms of a client’s family to reveal patterns of behaviour and relationships
  • Solution-Focused
    • Uncover existing boundaries and strengths
    • “Magic question” to establish goals and create hope for your client
    • 1 to 10 scale to track progress and note exceptions
  • DBT
    • Distress tolerance skills
    • Encourage journaling to process emotions and review progress
    • Engage in role-play to practice coping skills and assert boundaries in potentially stressful situations
  • Focusing-Oriented Psychotherapy
    • Focus on client’s “felt experience” by paying attention to what the body is feeling
    • Help clients put words and descriptions to their physical experiences
  • Trauma- Informed Guiding Principles
    • Safety, choice, collaboration, and empowerment
    • Provide clients with a clear consent form detailing your processes and their rights in therapy
    • Techniques to enhance the collaborative focus of trauma-informed therapy


  • Healing from Family-of-Origin and Complicated Grief
    • Gaslighting parent – “golden child” & “scapegoat”
    • Insecure attachment - narcissist
    • Permission to detach, reduce, or cease communication
    • Sticking to healthy boundaries
    • Reverse relationship patterns
    • Case study: Cassie, 60-year-old female, familyof-origin engages in gaslighting
  • Healing from Narcissistic Partners
    • Rediscover and reestablish healthy boundaries
    • Protect children and pets
    • Establish financial security
    • Define what makes a healthy relationship
    • Cope with going no-contact or low-contact
    • Common issues when coparenting with a gaslighter and solutions

Help Clients Rebuild Their Lives

  • Strategies for co-parenting with gaslighter
  • Legal protections for clients/ children
  • Formation of healthy boundaries
  • Case study: Jamie, 45-years-old, co-parenting with a narcissist
  • Case study: 35-years-old, co-parenting with gaslighting ex-partner

Potential Pitfalls for Therapists

  • Triangulation of therapist
  • Being swayed by gaslighter’s charisma
  • Frustration over client returning to relationship
  • Pushing own agenda of client independence
  • Vicarious traumatization
  • Vicarious trauma or trauma from actions of gaslighter/narcissist
  • Burnout
  • Risks and limitations

Target Audience

  • Counsellors
  • Social workers
  • Psychologists
  • Art Therapists
  • Marriage and Family Therapists
  • Physicians
  • Addiction Counsellors
  • Mental health professionals who specialize in women’s issues, work in domestic violence shelters, work with LGBTQIA+ clients
  • Therapists that work in private practice, group settings, inpatient, and at schools

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