Words associated with minimisation include:
Minimization may take the form of a manipulative technique:
- observed in abusers and manipulators to downplay their misdemeanors when confronted with irrefutable facts.
- observed in abusers and manipulators to downplay positive attributes (talents and skills etc) of their victims and facilitate victim blaming.
A variation on minimisation as a manipulative technique is "claiming altruistic motives" such as saying "I don't do this because I am selfish, and for gain, but because I am a socially aware person interested in the common good".
Minimization may also take the form of cognitive distortion:
- that avoids acknowledging and dealing with negative emotions by reducing the importance and impact of events that give rise to those emotions.
- that avoids conscious confrontation with the negative impacts of one's behavior on others by reducing the perception of such impacts.
- that avoids interpersonal confrontation by reducing the perception of the impact of others' behavior on oneself.
- observed in victims of a trauma to downplay that trauma so as to avoid worry and stress in themselves and others.
- saying that a taunt or insult was only a joke
- including the words "just" or "only" and claiming it was an accident in a reply such as "I only brushed his shoulder by mistake" when accused of injuring somebody
- a customer receiving a response to a complaint to a company for poor service being told that complaints like his from other customers were very rare when in fact they are common.
- Guerrero, L., Anderson, P., Afifi, W. (2007). Close Encounters: Communication in Relationships (2nd ed.). Los Angeles: Sage Publications.
- Simon, George K. In Sheep's Clothing: Understanding and Dealing with Manipulative People (1996)
- Minimization: Trivializing Behavior as a Manipulation Tactic
- Discounting, Minimizing, and Trivializing
- Kantor, Martin The Psychopathology of Everyday Life 2006
- Blackman, Jerome 101 Defenses: How the Mind Shields Itself (2003)
- Henning, K & Holdford, R Minimization, Denial, and Victim Blaming by Batterers Criminal Justice and Behavior, Vol. 33, No. 1, 110-130 (2006)
- Rogers, Richard & Dickey, Rob (March 1991) Denial and minimization among sex offenders Journal Sexual Abuse Vol 4, No 1: 49-63
- Scott K Denial, Minimization, Partner Blaming, and Intimate Aggression in Dating Partners Journal of Interpersonal Violence, Vol. 22, No. 7, 851-871 (2007)