It was interesting at one stage to learn about a curious habit that is prevalent amongst folks of a certain social stratum within a particular heritage, to talk derisively about a fellow human being while he or she was present, but using a tone of phrase to ‘speak over his or her head’.
If this trait was to be compared to the one where a person is upbraided for bringing up a topic in conversation, with the words; ‘I’m not saying it is inappropriate to mention this issue right now, but….’ Perhaps it could be seen to be coming from the same place.
Gaslighting is another way of trying to undermine a person’s confidence. Usually there is an issue around power and control dynamics that is being played out in these situations.
Commitment to due process and courtesy in dealing with others does require time, energy and attention. It isn’t useful to bear grudges, but it is helpful to remember those who treat us well and those who don’t.
Conditioning lies at the heart of the matter. Each person has personal power to keep, or give away.