The title sort of says it all: boundaries are vital. And not just for romantic relationships either. We have to set boundaries with friends, coworkers, and especially family. A lot of times, family members have a tendency of taking us for granted, even coming to expect certain things. That's when boundaries and lines get crossed and things can get pretty tense.
This is where we as adults have to communicate our boundaries. We all have our own set of values, principles, wants, desires, needs, etc! There is nothing wrong with making those things known either. So please for the love of all that's holy, remember that just because you tell someone no, or that you're not comfortable with something doesn't mean you're an asshole! It just means you're human, you have your limits and know them. Quite frankly, knowing those limits is healthy for both you and those who are in your life as well.
In the past, I've had problems communicating my boundaries. I grew up in a household where children were to be seen and not heard. And if I spoke out, there were dire consequences. That's putting it mildly.... That upbringing seeped over into my adult life in some ways. At times I felt cornered, alone, and even bullied. So I can understand and relate to being afraid to draw your line in the sand. It can be very scary. However there comes a point where you have to speak up, otherwise people will continue to do what they do.
Sometimes people aren't even aware that they've crossed a line. This is why when something has occured, it's important to address it. And it doesn't even have to be confrontational. You can just simply tell whoever it is "Hey, this occured earlier and I wanted to let you know how it made me feel" and then explain why. If it's a more serious topic, it may require a little more openness on both sides. I personally let people know when I feel this is the case and say something to the affect of "Hey, I need to have a serious conversation with you that's going to require an open mind and heart. Can we sit down and talk calmly for a while please?" Usually this works pretty well with most people. And remember, you have to be open to hearing their side as well. It could be a simple misunderstanding that just takes a little time to talk out. Plus it always feels better after clearing the air!
Now if you're dealing with a narcissist or certain other personality disorders, of course, this method isn't going to work. As a matter of fact, they'll proceed to gaslight you and cast you as the villain. Most of the time there's no getting through to these types of people. Unfortunately, your best bet is usually cutting ties and moving forward with your life. If you don't, nine times out ten you'll continue in the same vicious circle of abuse and misery. No one deserves to live like that, so do yourself the favor now and move on.
It's not always that easy. I get it. A lot of times these are people who have been in our lives for years, our partners, siblings or even our parents. So what are we to do in these cases? Well, there's no easy way to put it, this is the tough stuff. This is where we have to stand our ground. You tell the "friend", partner, sibling, or parent that they've crossed a boundary and you won't allow it to continue to happen. And then you follow through with action. If needed, cut them off for a period of time. Absence can be just the reminder that's needed to not take people for granted. In the end, they'll either respect your boundaries or won't. And if they don't, then you have to make the decision if you want them in your life or not.
Thanks for tuning in my friends! I appreciate every single one of you. I truly hope you've found this helpful! Stay tuned, up next is some very interesting info about Shadow Work!