2. Now I’ve got you, you son of a bitch
Payoff: The aim of this game is to justify your rage, or your action of out-doing or winning against the other person; it displaces anger and absolves you of responsibility.
Your friend didn’t, or, forgot to invite you to his party. Next time around, you deliberately don’t invite him to your party. Socially, it’s an adult-adult transaction, but psychologically, you turned on your Parent ego state by punishing your friend.
If your date or friend responds to your text after 2 hours, you will one up and respond after 3 hours, despite that you had seen the text right when it hit your phone, and your fingers were also free.
3. See what you made me do
Payoff: The aim of this game is vindication; justifiable anger gives an excuse to do what one wants; absolution of responsibility; instilling guilt.
The position one takes is, “I am blameless.” Say, John is upset and wants to be left alone. His wife runs into the door looking for something, and in the moment, the interruption caused John to drop his bottle of beer and he yells, “See, what you made me do.” He is acting from Child ego state.
4. If it weren’t for you
Payoff: Absolution of guilt.
A person will willingly put himself or herself in a less ideal situation just to guilt another person. It gives the person a reason to blame others for their non-achievements. Take an example of a woman who marries a domineering man so that he will restrict her activities and thus keep her from getting into situations that frighten her.
If this were a simple transaction, she might express her gratitude when he performed this service for her. But when playing “if it weren’t for you” game, her reaction is quite the opposite: she takes advantage of the situation to complain about the restrictions, which makes her spouse feel uneasy and gives her all sorts of advantages.
5. Let’s you and him fight
Payoff: Control of others, share of blame, friendship
It is a maneuver in which a person (usually female) challenges two men into fighting, with the implication or promise that she will surrender herself to the winner. After the competition is decided, she fulfills her bargain. This is an honest transaction, and the presumption is that she and her mate live happily ever after.
Payoff: Sympathy; avoidance of responsibility
Heterosexual perversions such as fetishism, sadism and masochism are symptomatic of a confused Child and are treated accordingly. People who are suffering from mild sadistic or masochistic distortions tend to take a primitive kind of ‘Mental Health’ position. They feel that they are strongly sexed, and that prolonged abstinence will lead to serious consequences. Neither of these conclusions is necessarily true, but they form the basis for the plea: “what do you expect from someone as strongly sexed as I am?”
Payoff: satisfaction; ego-boost; a feeling that one is desirable.
Rapo is basically a social game in which someone lures another to pursue them sexually, takes some pleasure (ego boost) from it, and then dismisses their target. A lady would signal that she is available and gets her pleasure from the man’s pursuit. As soon as he has committed himself, the game is over. She would just walk away, or say, “You are nice, but…,” and move on to the next conquest. The Child ego is active in that person.
8. Wooden leg
Payoff: Plea of insanity; sympathy; avoidance of responsibility
The thesis of ‘Wooden Leg’ is, “what do you expect of a man with a wooden leg?” The internal dialogue that goes on in the head of the person playing the game is, “What do you expect of someone as emotionally disturbed as I am – that I would stop sleeping around with women?” It’s a way of justifying their behavior and shucking off responsibilities. If he can overcome his “wooden leg” and build businesses, he can also drop this game with women, but he won’t, because he derives pleasure out of it.
9. Clever me
Payoff: attention; identity; ego-boost; social capital
Johnny does something that displays intellect, skills, values, etc. He wants to show it to the world. Johnny manipulates the situation so that Jim “finds out” about it. Jim congratulates Johnny for being so intelligent. Johnny gains social position and identity reinforcement and hence feels good. In return, Johnny pays a compliment back to Jim. Johnny in this case acted from Child ego state demanding approval from Jim. Afterwards, Johnny played from Adult state by giving Jim a compliment.
Now that you know about these games, or, “rackets,” catch yourself when you play one next time. Observe how you feel about it and see if there is something you would like to change about it. There are no “10 things you should do to change your game.” People only themselves know best about the games they play, and if they are smart enough to understand the theory behind these games, they can also find solutions. Also notice the games others are playing with you — you will never have a dull moment.