Page 14 of 15
TRAGIC AND BANAL SCRIPTS. Some scripts are tragic and some scripts are banal. Tragic scripts are highly dramatic such as drug addiction, suicide or "mental illness." Banal, or garden-variety scripts are less dramatic but more common. They are the melodramas of everyday life. They usually affect large sub-groups of people such as men, women, racial groups or teenagers. People in these sub-groups are scripted to live their lives in certain set ways: in the past women were supposed to be emotional loving home-makers, and have no permission to be logical, strong or independent; men to be logical, strong, bread-winners, with no permission to be childlike, scared, needy nurturing or openly loving. A banal script's life course may be: going from bad to worse, never having fun, always being in debt or taking care of others and neglecting oneself..
Members of certain nationalities or races are supposed to be smart or stupid or honest or devious or good athletes or reckless or cold and so on. Some cultures, script their children to be competitive so that they have trouble cooperating and living with each other. Other cultures emphasize cooperation and cause people who are strong individuals to feel thy are no OK. These cultural scripts can affect whole populations in a harmful way.
RACKETS. One aspect of scripts is the existential payoff of games is the bad feelings which are accumulated and can eventually blow up and lead to an emotional disaster. Each game's existential payoff accumulates to eventually cause a predicted script outcome. Some people collect angry feelings that they will eventually justify a divorce. Others accumulate depressive feelings toward a suicide. The fact that they are creating situations which produce the negative feelings of their script choice is called their emotional racket.
PERMISSION, PROTECTION and POTENCY. Permission is a very important part of a transactional analysis. It's a situation in which the educator or therapist says, "You can do what your parents or other people told was wrong" or "You don't have to keep doing what you decided to do as a child." For example, if a person who is now very shy was told "Don't ask for anything," one permission would be to ask for what is wanted or needed. "Ask for strokes, you deserve them." When a person takes a permission and goes against parental and social demands and wishes, their Child is apt to get very frightened. That is why protection is a very important part of change. Protection is given or offered by the teacher or therapist, preferably with a group's support, to a person who is ready to change his or her script. The therapist and the group offer protection to the person when they say, "Don't worry, everything's going to be all right. We'll back you up and take care of you when you're scared." Permission and protection increase the therapeutic potency of a transactional analysts by introducing the Nurturing Parent into the situation. Use of the therapist's Parent and Child (as when having fun during therapy) makes the transactional analyst more effective than the professional who uses only one-third of his personality and relates to clients only with his or her Adult.