Should You Play Games In a Relationship?
Mind games are tactics used to manipulate a person to respond or react in a certain way. Mind games deal with imposing one’s will on the psyche of another person for some desired result. There are many reasons why people play mind games in relationships. Sometimes the person doing it isn’t completely aware of the fact that they are playing mind games. It could be that these mind games become a habit in the interactions they have with their spouse. Thus, both individuals may see that their toxic interactions become the status quo and normality for all of their exchanges. By being aware of why one plays mind games, they will become more conscientious when they are doing it and instead approach their interactions in a much healthier way. The following are a few common reasons why people play mind games:
- to acquire control
- to get their desired response
- to get revenge
- to absolve one’s own insecurities
Types of Mind Games
The following are just a few types of mind games as well as common examples of how people play mind games within the context of a relationship:
1. Playing Hard to Get
Some people play hard to get because they light to be sought after and love the attention. However, this approach is very disingenuous and will likely turn off your person of interest. In fact, your spouse may feel as though you’ve lost interest in them. Playing hard to get could be done through distancing yourself, not returning calls/text messages, and also being unavailable to that person. Playing hard to get can make the other person feel dismissed, unimportant, invisible, and unappreciated.
Projection has many faces and can be done through transference. You or your significant other may be projecting your own fears on the other. For example, there are some individuals who have experienced infidelity in their past relationships. One way they believe they can prevent this in their current relationship is to gain access to their spouses’ phone and social media accounts. If their spouse refuses to give them access, the person requesting may feel as though there is a lack of trust their. Thus, they may guilt-trip their partner and assume they are hiding something.
3. Sending Mixed Messages
Passive-aggressive behavior is one way that people send mixed messages. One may send a mixed message because they are not being completely honest with themselves and also not being honest with their partner. Thus, you may find that the other person is speaking vaguely when discussing the direction of the relationship. Instead of being honest and speaking directly, these individuals are afraid of the outcome of their honesty. They may feel they will lose the relationship if they were completely transparent. So, in an attempt to keep the relationship selfishly, they manipulate information and withhold truths. This can also be done when partners administer the silent treatment.
Should You Play Mind Games in a Relationship?
The degree of mental gymnastics one must with mind games is endless. Mind games impose a lot of animosity, trust-issues, insecurities, and distance within a relationship. Playing mind games in a relationship has many negative effects both on the relationship as well as your own mental health. Over time, this manipulation may reach a peak that is unredeemable. If people are experiencing relationship problems and aren’t sure how to communicate those issues effectively, then seeking a counselor is definitely a great option. Sometimes, we need a third opinion and an objective view of our situation. This will give you clarity and insight into your behavior as well as your partner’s behavior. You’ll also find healthy methods of interacting and understanding one another.