The romantic myth would have us believe that as we grow to know and love one another
we grow closer. So close in fact, that we ‘ought’ to understand their feelings almost telepathically. The problem with myths are … well… they’re myths. For example:

Tom asks Sally, ‘How are you?’ Sally replies,

‘I’m fine.’

The answer is a little abrupt. Tom senses there is something wrong. ‘Are you sure you’re fine?’ Sally says, ‘I told you I’m fine!’

Tom says, ‘Well now you seem cross!’ Sally says, ‘I’m cross now you keep asking!’

Tom’s antennae are twitching – it has stopped being a simple concern about Sally, and become instead about his own anxiety. ‘What’s wrong? Is it something I’ve said or done?’

Now Sally has to cope with both her own mood and Tom’s anxiety. No wonder she’s cross!

Tom might have reasoned as follows: perhaps I’m wrong about Sally not being fine. After
all, I don’t really know how’s she’s feeling. But assuming I’m right about her, then the subtext of Sally’s somewhat abrupt response is actually

‘I don’t want to talk about it.’

Either way, I should take her first answer, leave her with her own feelings and not chase her.

We tend to think that either we CAN read each other’s minds, or we SHOULD do so if we are in a truly loving couple. Genuine empathy, however, is giving your partner space. It’s time to give up the romantic myth that we should mind-read.

Benefits of animation

  • Animation is accessible, especially via social media, and completely free to air for people who require it (via mobile phones).
  • Animation can reach cohorts who struggle to read and write, eg those with a neurodivergence (20% of the population) and/or SEND (15% of the population).
  • Animation can be translated to reach people for whom English is not the first language.
  • Waiting times for CAMHS and community mental health services is typically months – from script to screen, an animation can be created in two weeks, making it ideal for ‘disaster’ work.
  • Animation voiceovers can be quickly translated and revoiced in any language at a rough cost of only £1000.
  • While the initial animation can cost about £10k, subsequent digital copies are completely free (unlike print). Small amendments to ‘end slates’ to, for example, localise helpline numbers cost very little, so one trauma video can be used 10,000 times nationally at pretty much no extra cost. • Animation works brilliantly across all social media channels so it’s instantly and freely accessible and provides a ‘language’ for the person and their caregivers to understand what’s going on.
  • Still images can be taken from the animation and used within other collateral. For example, a dozen still images can be laid out in front of a child, enabling them to choose which image from the animation spoke to them (a good way to introduce tricky subjects, eg sexual abuse).