12 phrases master manipulators often use to make you feel special

Lucas Graham by Lucas Graham | June 8, 2024, 6:35 pm

Ever been in a chat that made you feel like a superstar, but something felt a tad strange? You could’ve been dealing with a master manipulator.

These individuals are skilled at making you feel on top of the world, but their motives might not be as golden as you think. They use certain phrases to win you over and get you to follow their lead.

Wondering how you can tell if someone’s truly honest or just playing puppeteer with you? Stick around!

In this article, we’ll highlight 12 phrases manipulators usually drop.

1) “You’re not like anyone I’ve ever met.”

We’ve all heard this one before, right? It’s a classic phrase that’s meant to make you feel unique and special. But when it comes from a manipulator, it’s often a strategy to make you feel like you’re in a league of your own, and therefore more likely to go along with their plans.

It’s important to remember that while it’s great to be unique, this phrase can also be used as a manipulation tactic. So next time you hear it, take it with a grain of salt!

2) “I’ve never felt this way about anyone.”

Sounds romantic, doesn’t it? But hang on a minute, it could also be a red flag. Manipulators often use this phrase to make you feel special and cherished. It creates a strong emotional bond that they can use to their advantage.

However, if they’re saying this too soon or often, they might be trying to manipulate you into thinking you have a unique place in their life. 

3) “Nobody understands me like you do.”

This phrase is a tricky one. It’s designed to make you feel like there’s an exclusive connection between you two. It happened to me once. I had a friend who would always say this to me.

At first, it made me feel special and validated, as if I was the only one who could truly understand her. But over time, I noticed that she would only say this when she wanted something from me. It was her way of subtly manipulating me into doing things for her.

A word of caution – if someone frequently tells you that “nobody gets them like you do,” it might be more about manipulation than connection.

4) “You’re perfect, just the way you are.”

Who doesn’t enjoy a little flattery, right? However, when it comes from a manipulator, this phrase is often used to create an illusion of unconditional acceptance.

But here’s an interesting fact: according to psychologists, manipulators often use extreme flattery to make their targets feel special and therefore more open to manipulation. It’s also known as the “halo effect,” where our impression of a person positively influences our overall opinion of them.

While it’s nice to be appreciated for who you are, remember that nobody is perfect and extreme flattery can sometimes be a red flag.

5) “I can’t imagine my life without you.”

This phrase can make your heart flutter, especially when it comes from someone you care about. It implies a deep level of attachment and commitment.

However, when used by a manipulator, it’s often designed to make you feel indispensable and to create a sense of obligation toward them. It tugs at your heartstrings, making it harder for you to say no or to distance yourself if things start to go south.

While it’s wonderful to feel valued and loved, it’s also important to recognize when such expressions might be used to manipulate you into sticking around, even if the situation isn’t healthy for you.

6) “Only you can help me.”

This phrase can feel like a compliment. It suggests that you possess some unique ability or quality that the person values. But when it comes from a manipulator, it’s typically a way to make you feel obligated to assist them.

I remember a colleague who would use this phrase whenever he wanted me to pick up his workload. “Only you can finish this report so well,” he’d say. At first, I felt flattered and useful, but over time I realized it was just a tactic he used to get out of doing his own work.

Thus, be careful! If someone frequently tells you, “only you can help,” it might be less about your abilities and more about their manipulation.

7) “I’ve never told anyone this before.”

Let’s get real. When someone hits you with this phrase, it can make you feel like you’ve been given VIP access to their secret world. It can make you feel trusted, special, and maybe even a little heroic.

But when these words are coming from a master manipulator, it’s often a ploy to reel you in deeper. They want you to feel like the chosen one, the keeper of their secrets. It creates an emotional debt that they’ll likely call in later. 

8) “We’re soulmates.”

This phrase can feel like the ultimate compliment, suggesting an extraordinary connection between two people. But did you know that manipulators often use this phrase to create a false sense of destiny?

According to research, it’s a common manipulation technique termed ‘love bombing.’ It begins with intense affection and flattery but can quickly turn into control and abuse.

Although it’s lovely to believe in soulmates, beware of those who declare it too soon or use it as a justification for their behavior. Your soulmate should respect and care for you, not manipulate you.

9) “You’re the only one who makes me happy.”

This line can sound like the ultimate compliment, implying that you bring a special kind of happiness into their world.

But let me tell you from firsthand experience, it’s not always as genuine as it seems. I once had a partner who tossed this phrase around like confetti. At first, it felt amazing, like being the star of their show. But as time went on, I realized it was more about them than me. It became a subtle way to burden me with their happiness, making me feel guilty whenever I couldn’t keep up with their expectations.

Sure, spreading joy is great, but nobody should carry the weight of being someone else’s sole source of happiness. When someone drops this line, it could be a sneaky attempt to guilt-trip you into doing what they want.

10) “I don’t know what I’d do without you.”

Imagine you’re in a relationship with someone, let’s call them Alex. Alex constantly tells you, “I don’t know what I’d do without you.” At first, it feels amazing, like you’re their rock, their everything.

But as time goes on, you start noticing a pattern. Whenever you try to spend time with friends or pursue your own interests, Alex lays on the guilt, saying things like, “But I need you here with me,” or “You’re the only one who really gets me.”

Suddenly, you feel trapped. You want to be there for Alex, but you also want to maintain your own independence. Yet, every time you try to assert yourself or set boundaries, Alex reels you back in with that same old line, “I don’t know what I’d do without you.”

Before you know it, you’re stuck in a cycle of obligation, feeling like you can’t leave because Alex is so dependent on you. And that’s the danger of this seemingly innocent phrase when it’s wielded by a manipulator.

11) “You’re the best thing that ever happened to me.”

You know that line, “You’re the best thing that ever happened to me”? Well, when a manipulator drops that bomb, it’s like planting a seed of dependency.

First off, it’s all about making you feel like you’re the sole source of their happiness. Like if you weren’t around, their whole world would come crashing down. Talk about pressure, right?

Then comes the guilt trip. They lay it on thick, making you feel like you’d be breaking their heart if you even thought about stepping away or setting some boundaries. As a result, you end up feeling stuck, like you can’t do anything without hurting them.

At the end of the day, it’s all about control. By making you feel like you’re their one and only, they’re pulling the strings, making you dance to their tune. You feel like you have to keep them happy, even if it means sacrificing your own needs and desires. It’s a pretty toxic cycle.

12) “I’ve never met anyone like you.”

Here’s the raw truth. This phrase is often used by manipulators to make you feel like a rare gem, making it easier for them to influence your decisions and behavior.

While it’s wonderful to be appreciated for your uniqueness, remember that this phrase can also serve as a manipulative strategy. So next time someone tells you they’ve “never met anyone like you,” take a moment to question their motives and your dynamic with them.

Unmasking manipulation: The toxic Charm of master manipulators

In navigating relationships, recognizing the subtle tactics employed by master manipulators is paramount. These individuals wield phrases like “You’re the best thing that ever happened to me” as insidious tools, weaving webs of emotional dependency and guilt around their victims.

By fostering a belief that one holds exclusive power over their happiness, manipulators trap their targets in a cycle of obligation and isolation, tightening their grip on emotions and decisions.

Therefore, it’s crucial to understand that true connection doesn’t come with strings attached. By shining a light on these tactics, we unveil the facade of charm, reclaiming agency over our emotions and relationships.