I’VE BEEN FRAMED –
but I’m innocent!
PREVIOUS: BDs (Part 2) – Logic types
Frames are cognitive shortcuts used to help make sense of complex information. If you look out of 2 different windows at a landscape – you’ll see 2 (maybe very) different aspects of that world. It hasn’t changed – only your perspective – your FRAME. The ‘view’ of ourselves, others & the world around us comes from our beliefs about those 3 categories, based on what we believe to be our value, skills, talents, potential….. (for ACoAs those are not positively weighted!) These views will limit our options in life, OR open up all sorts of possibilities. (see Input-Output chart in DMs, Part 1)
• Framing Theory can help make sense of how DMs lead to DBs, because it explains that – “how something is presented influences the choices people make”. If you don’t ‘set the frame’ -for yourself & with others- someone else will, & whoever does – controls the situation by creating the context for everything that happens in the interaction.
• Each different kind of frame has several parts, making up the whole:
– Commercial Transaction: seller, goods, buyer, money
– Communication: message, messenger, audience, medium, images & context
– Group Therapy: therapist, clients, personal problems, suitable location ……
• Controlling our frame is not necessarily bad. In fact we all do it every day – parent to child, teacher to class, boss to employee…. It’s only bad when the frame is designed to ensnare /control another person or group.
D.Messages are used by one person or entity to force a frame (point of view) on another to only see something in a skewed way. Then X can herd Y into a mental & behavioral tunnel – like cattle – with nowhere to run. “Heads I win, tails you lose”.
• Our personal reality is constantly changing & always includes our active participation. It’s made up of the events, experiences, objects, processes & facts we encounter, & can only be fully understood in context. In NLP terms, the Frame is the ‘immediate moment’, inside the ‘overall interaction’, the META-frame. Normally, each frame (moment) effects the next & the next….to infinity, same as ‘context’ in DBs #2.
D.Messages cancel out the possibility of going from one frame to the next – preventing our ability to move to the next moment.
• Frames take time to develop since they’re based on repeated experiences, forming expectations of how things will turn out or how we think they’re supposed to be.
D.Binds rely on the Victim’s (R) ability & desire to figure out what the Perpetrator (S) wants, but then thwart that possibility.
• The effects of normal framing are like optical illusions. Do we see the glass as half full or half-empty? Did you & your ex ‘break up,’ or did he/she ‘dump you?’ You hear a noise at the front door – are you scared (you’re all alone) OR feel happy (expecting your lover)?…. Part of the way we figure out our environment is by deciding what to include in each experience: which parts are relevant & which can or should we ignore?
D.Binds take away our ability to make those decision or have options.
• The specific words we use, when combined with the setting (DMs – #1), create a feedback loop that guides & shapes our interaction with others. The choice of language for each type of basic frame is crucial, because its verbal images, story lines & emotions can evoke higher-level moral & theoretical frames.
D.Messages include lower level components but disregard logic & morality, leaving us at the mercy of the puppet master.
• A valid frame is made up of a group of logical & related ideas, and all the pieces must be known in order to understand the whole. (If you only hear one side of a phone conversation you can’t know what it’s really about.)
— Equally – to understand any one piece of info, the whole system (context) has to be understood. (If you only hear the word ‘whore’ you don’t know if it’s an insult, a metaphor, part of a story, a religious reference….).
— On the other hand, individual words can represent a whole category of information, so introducing one idea (a past ‘moment’) can bring to mind a complete picture – from our store of memories & experiences. But the words, phrases & images have to be understandable & logical.
EXP: ‘Dope’ can mean a narcotic in one frame, & “that’s good” in another. In one frame both meanings are positive (as with users), but in a completely different frame ‘dope’ is harmful, & using the word to mean ‘great’ makes no sense (as with ‘straights’).
D.Messages juxtapose opposing concepts as if they belonged together, which makes them both irrational, & the misuse of language sets the stage for confusing & then controlling another person.
EXP of an invalid frame: In group therapy Lina complains that after only one year of marriage, her husband ‘unfairly’ divorced her, even tho they love each other, because his teenage daughter from a previous marriage violently objects to their union. The group is confused. Why didn’t she fight for her marriage? Why couldn’t they work it out? Why is the father so effected by the girl?….
Lena LEFT OUT of the presented frame – that:
a) her husband is an active alcoholic, & won’t get ‘help’ of any kind
b) his first wife is Lena’s oldest sister, so she’s known him for many years
c) her husband’s daughter is also her niece, whom she helped raise from infancy!
No wonder the girl is upset! AND why Lena was in a BD!
D.Binds are neither meaningful nor useful, because they create unsound frames that violate the rules of logic, and are severely slanted to only suit the Sender. (“How we think…”)
NEXT: DBs (Part 4) – Options