Manipulators Vs Users How does one differentiate them? How do we even define them? How do we explain these two w.r.t any kind of relationship? Are they bad people? Or is it just a matter of perspective? Or is the second person in that relationship a fool or an innocent one? Is moving away a solution for it or does it have to be a tit for tat a solution?? Let me narrate you my observations. Incident 1: All throughout my school life, there were two very best of friends. Lets call them Vani and Latha. Who sat beside each other, both of them were toppers in the school. They discussed everything and anything about studies, during school, after school, @ tuition classes. And surprisingly, both of them got the same marks in every final exams, yep, even in the 10th class boards. Both of them pursued different professions and both are living a contended life. Its been 15 years now but they are not in touch anymore. Yes, after completing 10th std, they are not in touch. I am friends with Vani. And she always tells me that why isn't Latha anymore in touch with her. She recalls all those incidents where Latha used to talk to her on the phone for hours together, where she cracked jokes etc etc. And everytime she mentions about Latha, her tone comes down. She feels bad for it. Anyone who knew Latha would definitely know that she is a user and has used Vani throughout her school life. I wonder if Vani has even realized this. She does know that Latha is not in touch but I don't think she is mentally prepared to accept that she was being used. Ego or innocence? I don't know. Incident 2: My cousin works in team of 10 members with four women. She is one of those girls who doesn't share much about her personal life in the office. But, there is one woman named Prachi, who pokes her nose into everyone's personal life. She has the tactics and ideas to do it in such a way that no one would ever realize that they are sharing that information. Prachi cajoles them, talks to them very sweetly. And when my cousin isn't willing to share her personal info, she told everyone in the team that she is not sharing any of her details with her and she is keeping Prachi at bay. With the kind of emotional support she garnered earlier, everyone in the team now literally questions my cousin as to why she isn't sharing any info with Prachi. Prachi is just a colleague and not any lead or manager. All those four women have ~ same experience level. But my cousin feels bad that no one is respecting her privacy and Prachi has manipulated everyone to such an extent that no one in the team wants to understand or respect her privacy. This incident has occured five years ago, and everyone has moved to various cities and countries and leading their lives happily. But, yet, my cousin tells me that since Prachi has already manipulated everyone to such an extent that no one has realized they were being manipulated and Prachi has only boosted her ego by doing so. She tells me various other incidents where the whole team fell for her manipulation and for her crocodile tears. See, some people are quite good at gaining sympathy. This was manipulating with sympathy. Incident 3: I have seen people manipulating others with their outspoken nature. They talk to everyone very closely. They crack jokes, they make even the saddest person laugh and yes, that is the key to lock people. Many people fall for them and start sharing their personal details. These kind of manipulators do this not for ego boosting but for a mere time pass. They want to have a control over the weak. They know how weak a weak person is. And then, the game begins. We really do not need to start analysing every incident or every person. But knowing in general that these kind of people exist and live around us, makes our live simple. They need not be verbal abusers; but these users and manipulators are emotional abusers and they are like cancer. We would never realize that they existed and grew within us. Some die without even knowing that they had cancer and some realize at the very last stage. What is the solution for this? How does one recognize all these kinds of people? All said, what were those incidents where you came across such persons? Have you had first hand experience of these kind of people? How did you react to it when you realized you have been used or manipulated? Reacting as in sitting alone and thinking about it and even confronting them? How have you solved it?