What Games Do Couples Play? (Part 5)

The Gotcha Game

The “Gotcha” Game

When a game is being played, there are two sides, so while Alex was playing his game, Tamara was “feeding” her own game too. Her needs match his needs in the meaning that for her he is somebody that makes sure she is not responsible for the quality or success of their marriage.

They both blame it on the other – he blames every little thing on her and she blames it on his affairs. This “blaming” is both exposing and defending and specifically, Tamara’s game may be called “Gotcha”.

As in “If it weren’t for you”, this game also belongs to the Aggressor’s list of games. Even though there were many heated arguments, mostly Tamara’s game was even more manipulative than his game and dangerous because it was hidden and passive aggressive.

The role of a Victim adds up to her reactions and in her game, she allows Alex to do whatever he wants and gives him the tempting freedom to meet his mates and pursue his affairs, knowing that he will succumb. Not only that but eventually he will either have another affair or be driven to leave her. And then, when he does, she can make him responsible for the heartache it creates and the resulting subconscious message in her head is “Gotcha”. It is almost like she set him up to fail and he did.

The Change of Roles

Tamara blames Alex for his affairs and the way they affected their marriage and their home. She seeks sympathy and she gets it from friends and family who she discusses the situation with.

She feels right by the answers and the compassion they give her and they do it because anything else would be unkind or even worse – defending Alex’s behaviour. This automatically puts her into the Helpless role.

Games and roles being played aren’t always permanent and Alex and Tamara, like most can switch their roles as well. This shows up when Alex tries to come back into their relationship and turns Helpless, while Tamara becomes a Manipulative Aggressor simply because Alex’s behaviour gives her the opportunity to become one.

She now holds the lynchpin and, for a short while at least, he submits with a promise to change.

It is obvious what their issue is – they both avoid coming closer to each other and to open up and act straightforward. This issue is the real function of game playing. Tamara plays her game because her script tells her that she shouldn’t open up too much to anyone and become too close to them because this way she would get exposed to hurt. And Alex maintains his script, believing he will never find real love. He feels that she doesn’t love him just as he wasn’t loved by the women he was having affairs with.

To get out of the situation they both need to step up into the Winner’s triangle and become responsible for their own inner worlds and aware of their own needs in order to become responsible for their marriage and continue living their lives on the bride side.

What are your thoughts on this? Please leave a comment to keep the conversation going.

To the wonder of you,




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