is is Important to Set Boundaries?
you Continue this Behavior
boundaries seems to be a crucial point to relationships.
are basically three parts to a boundary. The first two are setting the boundary
- the third is what we will do to defend that boundary.
you - a description
of the behavior we find unacceptable (again being as descriptive as possible.)
will - a description of what action you will take to protect and take
care of your self in the event the other person violates the boundary.
you continue this behavior
- a description of what steps you will take to protect the boundary that you have
set. (whether or not you say this verbally or not).
The doors of my house have locks. I not only have the right to lock my doors,
but I have the duty to protect my family from thieves and dangerous people. Yet,
even with the doors locked, my home is occasionally invaded by telemarketers who
interrupt whatever I'm doing with the hope of making a sale. At other times, an
acquaintance may call and poison the atmosphere with endless whining about how
unfair life is.
life would be unfair if we were forced to listen to someone whose only purpose
in life is to complain. Thankfully, life is not unfair. We have power. We can
define what we are willing to put up with. We can establish what is and what is
not acceptable to us. We don't have to listen to every call. We can say, "Sorry,
I'm busy now. Thanks for calling. Talk to you later. Good-bye," and hang
a list of I will not statements e.g. :
Here are a few examples:
will not tolerate disrespect in our home.
I will not tolerate contact with
the Other Person while we are working on us.
I will not tolerate secrets kept
I will not tolerate anything but total honesty from you.
continue, with the other parts of the boundary.
If you continue with this behaviour
I or you will leave this house.
is not always necessary or appropriate to share the third part of this formula
with the other person when setting a boundary - the first two steps are the actual
setting of the boundary. The third part is something we need to know for ourselves,
so that we know what action we can take if the other person violates the boundary.
It is very important to set consequences that we are willing to enforce. If you
are setting boundaries in a relationship, and you are not yet at a point where
you are ready to leave the relationship - then don't say that you will leave.
You can say that you will start considering all of your options including leaving
- but do not state that you will do something that you are not ready yet to do.
To set boundaries and not enforce them just gives the other person an excuse to
continue in the same old behavior. We want them to change their behaviour.
This may not be an instant
the bottom line is that you cannot force another person change their behavior,
so ultimately it is necessary for you to be willing to leave the relationship
if they won't stop. That doesn't mean you have to leave - what it means is that
you have to own that you do have the choice to leave. As long as you don't own
you have the choice to leave if the other persons behavior is unacceptable - then
you are just setting yourself up to feel like a victim.
we own that we have a choice, we haven't made one. In other words, if you do not
believe that you have a choice to leave your job, or relationship, then you have
not made a choice to stay in it. You can only truly commit yourself to something
if you are consciously choosing to do it.
definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again expecting different
results. If the person keeps doing the unacceptable behavior and you won't leave
them, then the hurt you are experiencing is your responsibility. It is so important
to start taking responsibility for our own feelings - and stop blaming them on
a word, we can set boundaries. Boundaries don't separate us from life; they enrich
it. After all, boundaries give us the freedom to become the person we wish to
be. Some, however, are afraid to speak up. They are afraid of being rejected and
losing their friend. They are willing to give up all that they can become in order
to hold on to the little that they now have.
of: Robert Burney --his good book is: Codependence
/ The Dance of Wounded Souls.
Melt Your Mans Heart