Pretending to Have Communication Issues

Types of Mind-Mapping

 
 

Lack of Communication: A Pretend Fairytale

In another article,  I described that there is no such thing as a lack of communication in a couple and that we have the ability to mind-map each other. This segment will go deeper into the different types of mind-mapping abilities we are capable of.

Quick Recap: What is Mind-Mapping?

Mind-mapping is our ability to understand other people’s intentions and desires as well as moods and emotions through their body language, their attitudes and their tone of voice. Most people pretend they don’t have this ability because it allows us to get what we want and be less vulnerable in our relationships. It also permits to argue about « nonexistent communication issues » rather than the real problems in the relationship, therefore avoiding break-ups. Mind-mapping also plays a crucial role in sex and how we go about having it with our spouse.

Types of Mind-Mapping Abilities

There are 4 different types of mind-mapping that we can use in social interactions. Each one requires the last to be able to do the next one. Therefore, there is a hierarchal element to using mind-mapping. Not everyone can use all 4 of them, but you or your partner might also be pretending you can’t do it. We’ve mostly described the first one which is mind-tracking.

Mind-Tracking: I See You!

We are constantly looking out for other people’s motives and intentions when they speak or behave. This is how we can finish people’s thoughts and know where they are going before they finish their train of thought. We analyse our partner’s body language such as where they are looking, how their hands and legs are open or closed, what posture they are taking. This is the basics of mind-mapping that everyone has. This is how you detect if someone is being truthful or lying or misdirecting the conversation. This allows for empathy and understanding of our spouse’s emotions as well. It allows you to know when your partner says: « I’m fine… ». And you know that it isn’t true.
One might think that if we are all able to do this, then wouldn’t relationships be easy and people would just get along. Why would couples argue so much if we can understand each other so well? The answer is that we don’t always like what we understand from each other. Sometimes it’s because we don’t like being vulnerable or that our lover knows things we want to hide. But if we can mind-track, how can we hide things from each other, you say? This is where mind-masking comes into play and complicates things a little bit.

Mind-Masking: You Can’t See Me!

Mind-masking is developed when we learn it from other people, mostly family dynamics. We understand at a young age that there are things we can do, say and think, but other times we cannot. We learn in most societies and social interactions that vulnerability is a flaw that we must hide. Mind-masking allows partners to lie to each other without the other person knowing they are. It also works when we want to pretend that we are not having pity sex (sex to avoid conflicts or hurting partner). Mind-masking is commonly known as the poker face!
This ability to mind-mask from others who are tracking us is a deceptive behaviour that we use to avoid conflicts that are getting too intense or when we want to get away with something we did. We’ve all done it before. You do something that has crossed the line and you know your partner won’t like it. So you play dumb and pretend you didn’t know it would bother them. A classic example is one partner isn’t feeling well, but they don’t want to talk about it so they put on a happy face. They pretend to have an orgasm or they hide their frustration or disappointment from their spouse.
A typical mind-masking behaviour when it comes to sex is when a partner starts to flirt with the other and they pretend not to understand what the other wants: To have sex. This leads us to the third mind-mapping ability which is false belief implanting.
 
 
 
 

False Belief Implanting: You Think you can see me!

I know, I know, this is getting confusing and a bit diseasing. Most likely you are following me because you have the abilities that are being discussed in this article. You’ve either done it yourself before or you are thinking of ways your partner has been doing similar things. Now if you can think of situations where your partner has mind-masked, then you are also able to do it and most likely have done it in the past.
False belief implanting is pretty self-explanatory. It’s when you can make your spouse think something is true when it isn’t. Such as you not being able to mind-track or mind-mask them. You implement the idea and they believe you. It now becomes part of your relationship dynamic, such as pretending you both don’t understand each other or that you have « communication issues ».  Men who have the nice guy syndrome are very good as implementing the idea that they are nice when it reality they are not. Women do it all the time as well. Whether you’re a heterosexual, homosexual, transsexual or lesbian couple, you will most likely find false belief implanting dynamics.
So many times in therapy, I have a couple where one of the partners has a lower sexual desire than their spouse. They have sex even when they don’t have the desire for it because they don’t want to say no again just to have their partner get angry for the 77th time about their sexual desires not being met.
The partner with the higher sexual desire will blatantly lie in the therapy session saying they didn’t know that the other wasn’t that into it. Only to have them confess minutes or sessions later, depending on how long they want to keep the false belief implanted, that they knew this all along. They justify their actions by explaining they wouldn’t have gotten what they wanted otherwise.
The next mind-mapping ability is the most twisted of them all. So much so that it actually has the name for it: Mind-twisting
 
 

Mind-Twisting: You’ll Wish You Didn’t See Me!

 
Still intrigued, are we? How far have you and your spouse fallen into to the downward cycle of Normal Marital Sadism? There are people who will go far to keep the upper hand in their relationship. Who will manipulate to the point where they must crush or make their partner’s feel bad about themselves so they don’t have to own up to their mistakes and faults. This may sound scary, but unfortunately and frequently long term couples do fall prey to the temptation of mind-twisting.
Mind-twisting requires all three previous mind-mapping abilities to be able to pull it off. You must mind-track your partner, mind-mask yourself and implant the false belief into the other person. The twisting part comes when you are able to conclude the conflict by making your spouse believe that it was all their fault in the first place when in reality your the one who is in the wrongdoing.
Now, this type of behaviour cannot be solved by communication skills. No amount of sentences starting with « I » will save this relationship from self-imploding. Fortunately, there are ways you can get out of this. Therapy with a trained professional such as a sex therapist and psychotherapist can help you. It will require lots of self-confrontation and a hard look at the status of your relationship and your spouse. This is no small feat and will shatter your perception of your relationship. This will test your capacity to hold onto yourself and strengthen your emotional balance and create a collaborative alliance with your partner rather than having no alliance. This will push your limits which you didn’t know existed to bring yourself and your lover to another level in your relationship.
 
Will you take the plunge?

Ending note

Mind-mapping doesn’t seem like a very useful ability to help couples in their relationships. It can seem as though it creates mistrust and cruel behaviours between people who at the basis are supposed to love each other. That is all true! But mind-mapping is also the way we are capable of connecting on a deeper more profound level with our partner. It makes sex way better than just exchanging orgasms with another person.

It is all a matter of how we decide we want to use mind-mapping. Do we want to be vulnerable and connected with each other or do we want to protect our ego and vanity? You can only choose one of those two options, which is why so many couples hurt each other through mind-mapping rather than connect with one another.


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Francois Renaud M.A.

Sex therapist & psychotherapist in Downtown Montreal
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