Psychology Gives 8 Signs a Person May be Exploiting You

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According to Psychology, there are clear eight Signs a Person may be exploiting you. There is a fine line between genuine friendship and being taken advantage of. This distinction often comes down to respect and transparency. When someone takes advantage of you, they benefit at your expense without your knowledge.

According to psychology, there are clear signs that someone is exploiting your kindness. Recognizing these signs can help you avoid future heartaches. In this article, We will share eight signs that can help you identify if you are being taken advantage of. Equipped with this knowledge, you can protect yourself from being exploited.

Signs a person may be exploiting you

1) Lack of reciprocation


In any healthy relationship, there should be a balance of give and take. If you find yourself constantly giving and receiving little in return, it may be a sign that someone is taking advantage of you. They will always expect sacrifices or favors from you while avoiding returning the favor when you need help.

2) Constantly asking for favors

If someone is always asking for favors without considering your convenience or feasibility, it is a red flag of exploitation. This behavior indicates that they are taking advantage of your willingness to help. For example, if a friend is constantly asking you to run errands, help with their work, or lend them money, it may be a pattern of exploitation rather than isolated incidents.

3) They only show up when they need something

I’ve come across individuals who only reach out when they require a favor or are going through a difficult time. The rest of the time, they are nowhere to be found.

This kind of behavior is another indication that someone may be taking advantage of you. They view you as a resource to be utilized, rather than as a cherished friend.


Psychology refers to these relationships as “instrumental relationships” – connections based on what one person can gain from the other. The person taking advantage only shows up when they need something, disregarding your feelings and needs.

4) They make you feel guilty

Feeling guilty is a powerful emotion that can unfortunately be exploited by others to manipulate and take advantage of you.

Signs a Person May be Exploiting You

If someone consistently makes you feel guilty for not meeting their needs or expectations, it is a clear indication that they are using you. They may use phrases like “After all I’ve done for you…” or “You’re letting me down…” to make you feel obligated to cater to their demands.

Psychology explains this as a form of emotional manipulation where the person exploits your emotions to fulfill their own desires, without considering the impact on your well-being.


You should never feel guilty for prioritizing your own needs and establishing healthy boundaries. If someone makes you feel this way, it is time to reevaluate that relationship.

5) They disregard your emotions.

Your emotions are valid and should always be acknowledged and respected as a part of your identity.

However, someone who takes advantage of you may dismiss or diminish your feelings. They may even gaslight you, manipulating you into questioning your own feelings, thoughts, and experiences.

Psychology warns us that dismissing someone’s emotions is a common trait of emotional manipulators. They use this tactic to maintain control and keep you in a vulnerable position.

6) They do not value your time.


Time is a precious resource that cannot be regained, and therefore it should be treated with respect.

If someone consistently disregards your time by being late, canceling plans last minute, or expecting you to be available at their every whim, they are taking advantage of you.

Psychology tells us that individuals who respect us will also respect our time. They understand that, like them, you have your own commitments, interests, and responsibilities.

7) They usually play the victim

Have you ever observed people in your life who always consistently position themselves as the victim?


This is a common tactic employed by individuals who exploit others. By portraying themselves as victims, they can justify their actions and manipulate you into sympathizing with them. They leverage this sympathy to coerce you into doing their bidding.

Psychology refers to this behavior as “victim playing” or “playing the martyr.” It is a manipulative strategy aimed at eliciting pity and compassion to control others.

When you identify this pattern in someone, it’s important to take a step back. Healthy relationships are built on honesty and mutual respect, not constant chaos and one-sided empathy. Don’t allow anyone to exploit your kindness by using their personal woes.

8) They undermine your self-worth

No one should ever make you feel inadequate.


However, in situations where someone is taking advantage of you, they may belittle your accomplishments or continually criticize you. They might even compare you unfavorably to others, causing you to doubt your abilities and feel inferior.

This psychological tactic is used to erode your self-confidence and create an unhealthy reliance on them for validation. By making you question your worth, they can maintain control and continue to exploit you.


Understanding human behavior can be complex, but when it comes to recognizing if someone is taking advantage of you, self-respect is the most important factor.

Self-respect serves as a shield, protecting you from those who seek to exploit your kindness or generosity. It empowers you to set boundaries and stand up for yourself when others try to cross them.


Psychology reminds us that self-respect is not innate; it is something we develop over time. One of the best ways to nurture it is by recognizing your worth and not allowing others to diminish it.

So, hold onto this knowledge and move forward with confidence. Do not let anyone trample on your self-respect. Ultimately, you teach people how to treat you by deciding what you will and will not tolerate.

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