Trauma therapist Shannon Thomas, author of ” Healing from Hidden Abuse,” told INSIDER that in these cases, it’s vital that survivors of toxic people have something called “gray rocking” in their toolbox of skills.
“Not all survivors of psychological abuse choose to implement no contact for a variety of reasons,” she said. “They may not yet be ready to leave the relationship, may decide to stay in a workplace where there is a toxic individual, or may not want to cut contact with healthy family members, and to go no contact with one individual would create distance from others.”
Gray rocking, she added, is perfect for interactions where a survivor and abuser have to come in contact. It’s part of “detached contact,” and is a boundary setting technique that allows the target of psychological abuse to remain grounded.
Essentially, they attempt to become as dull and unremarkable as a gray rock to the abuser. They’re present, but they do not engage with anything being said, especially any attempts at baiting.