I am the Queen of Cheat Sheets. No. I did not cheat my way through high school and college. By the way, for a copy of the Boundaries Cheat Sheet will cost you $100.00 per copy. Shhhhhh...don't tell Principal MWD. Guys, be nice to me...my last visit to the principal's office was back in the 2nd grade and I am a reformed mean girl. Truly.
Somebody's got to make a living off this, right?
There's been a ton of debate, discussion, and dabbling on the subject of boundaries flying all over the place in the DB forums. There's been a whole gamut of examples of Wet Noddle moments to the firebrand Hulk Hogan metal-chair shattering ones. Now, there has to be a medium between these two extremes when DBing.
Let's start with a question here.
What is a boundary? In the most basic form, it is a line of demarcation. Right? We all live in a world of boundaries with clearly defined nations, states, cities along with our own homes with white picket fences/acreage, storage units, school zones, etc. These are physical boundaries that we adhere to along with codified laws of the land to promote and maintain peace and harmony as co-existing neighbors on planet Earth.
There are, I think, three types of boundaries:
-Physical -Emotional -Mental
We interact with thousands of people on a daily basis through in-person encounters, over the telephone, over emails, and through texting (what's next? teleporting?). When we first meet strangers for the first time, the physical boundary is approximately 2 feet apart or so. That is the unspoken social boundary that most people respect when meeting people for the first time. That "hole" is our own personal space. You've noticed how uncomfortable you get when someone you meet for the first time crosses that plane...right? Heebie jebbies time, right? You slowly backpedal telling yourself in a sotto voce whisper to yourself, "Jeez, this person is totally creeping me out!"
You all get the idea here.
You get married. Joy. Rapture. Bliss.
This is when the boundaries between spouses slowly dissolve as you join as a unit called "married couple". By that stage, you've seen each other's best features and some not so likable flaws/faults after living together for some time. However, in healthy relationships, not ALL boundaries completely disappear for there's some semblance of mutual respect that underpins the marital relationship.
Now you are here in DB with a Wayward Spouse who may or may not be involved in an affair for a host of reasons that is truly devastating to YOU and/or your family.
Respect and boundaries GOES right out of the window. Poof! Commence the re-writing of your marital history, demonizing you, and just downright plowing right over your personal boundaries in a roughshod manner.
What's a cuddly Furby like you to do with those nasty Gremlins??!!
Ah....therein lies the rub.
We hope by the end of this tutorial, you'll be able to find your courage like the Lion in the Wizard of the Oz thus winning the Bravery Medal in Boundaries!
Here's to reclaiming some of your mojo!
The key to establishing and enforcing a boundary is being absolutely fearless knowing that you deserve and demand respect from your spouse. Trying to appease your spouse isn't the way to DBing and saving your M (and yourself). Appeasement out of fear is a true disservice to YOURSELF first and foremost. Respect begins with you. You are 100% responsible for how people treat you. It is as simple as that.
When you respect yourself, the rest will follow in line.
Sure, your spouse may get angry and spew. Not your fault. You are not responsible for their actions/behaviors. You only can be responsible for YOUR OWN conduct.
Like the Lion, when he encountered the Oz's spew for the first time, his knees buckled, simply turned tail and ran away crying like a baby that he was. Silly, eh?
Same with you.
Don't be so afraid of your WAS. You're giving them way too much power inside your own head. Don't let them mistreat you nor disrespect you.
Take back your own power and stand up for YOURSELF. Because no one else will do it for you.
GREAT idea for a thread, Wonka! I will have more to add later, for sure, but just wanted to be the first to thank you for initiating a very misunderstood subject, that needs to be addressed more often!
Here are some boundary setting statements and enforcing them.
Boundaries are for YOU and for your own well-being. Boundaries are not controlling at all. Simply statements of actions, comments, or behaviors by the other person that are not acceptable. It is signaling and communicating to the other person what's happening and what you will do if they persist in their actions.
To get you started, you might want to read Boundaries by Henry Cloud and John Townsend. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Boundary: I will no longer let someone yell at me on the phone.
Enforcing a boundary: When someone starts yelling at me, I will calmly end the conversation. "Let's talk about this tomorrow when we can speak more calmly." "I don't like the names you are calling me. We can talk tomorrow." Then you hang up.. you don't wait for the person to say, "O.K., fine," nor do you get into a debate. You hang up. The person doesn't necessarily have to understand your position or agree with it. This isn't about communication right now. This is about your boundary. Two different things.
"I am not going to discuss or debate this with you."
"This is non-negotiable."
"I understand that you are upset. Perhaps we should discuss this later when we're both in a calmer state of mind?"
"I think I need to take a break from this conversation. I will talk to you some other time."
"Please don't speak to me like that. I really don't like it and it is hurtful."
"I've asked you not to speak to me like that. I love you very much but I don't let anybody speak to me like that."
"I don’t have to listen to this."
"I'm not obligated to justify myself to you."
"That is all I have to say on the matter."
“I’m not trying for one of us to be right or wrong, but for the relationship to be the best it could possibly be. I need XX."
“I’ve given this a lot of thought. I am learning more about myself and what I can and can’t do and what I need. And I need XX.”
“I understand you think it means I’m selfish. Still, I need XX.”
“I am not trying to be controlling. I am trying to be open and honest about how I feel. I need XX.”
“I’m not sure how to answer that. But what I do know is that things can’t go on this way. I need XX.”
“It is true that we don’t see things the same way. I wish we did, because this isn’t easy for me either. What I need is XX.”
"That's too big of a topic to tackle right now. We'll speak about it another time."
"I hear what you're saying. I'll consider it."
"You may do X. I have decided to do Y. There's nothing more to discuss."
"If you continue to yell/be abusive, I will hang up. I'm hanging up now."
"I know you're feeling low. I'm not in a position to be very supportive right now, however."
"I find that this conversation is pushing my buttons. I'm getting off the phone now. We can speak again later."
"Discussing this by phone seems to trigger a lot of emotion for us both. I will summarize things in an e-mail. We can resolve it that way."
"I'm not available by phone right now. Please e-mail me."
"I need to take a few days off from speaking about this. Let's talk on Friday."
"It is hard for me to keep my heart [or eyes, ears] open to you when you are yelling at me, and it is important to me to keep my heart [eyes, ears] open to you. If you cannot stop yelling at me, we will have to talk another time. I want to keep my heart [eyes, ears] open to you, and I do not know how to do that when you are yelling, so I am going to hang up and talk to you another time."
Yeah, I sort of learnt it, but didn't know how to find the words when I can see their side.
I always felt seeing their side, meant giving up your side giving up your needs by comprising.
My h thinks that I cannot see his side due to wanting the stettlement and seeing his side would mean forgoing it.
These sessions and threads should be pinned as the script it universal. It helped me before to nicely stand up to a bully. I do know how to stand up in a much more confrontational way, but this really makes clear what you need.
Then it means you can take actions like walk away.
M 46 h54 Both married before T 11y Bd 2/14 I must see where ow leads! Ms 18 hs 26
What about unspoken boundaries? You don't need/approve of unwarranted compliments for sake of having something to say. Thus these compliments get no reply. This causes the other person to stop complimenting. At least from my experience.
Me43/WAW43..M 4y..S1 11/S2 4..Bomb2/2014..Dfile 5/2014..Settlement signed 8/20/14..D final 8/29/14 I moved out 10/10/14..WAW got D she wanted. I wanted R. No waiting,just no boundaries in her way.