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Originally Posted by Caligirl
A boundary I did with H. He has a bad habit of raising his voice . Always escalated between us . He did this a few weeks ago . I stated if you raise your voice again I will hang up . He raised his voice . So I hung up . He then called a ton back . I didnít answer . He sent nasty messages . I responded the same thing . You yell- I hang up . You send me nasty messages - I wonít respond . Last time itís happened . See the boundary was mainly for me . I know how we escalate fights so I chose to eliminate it . Itís not even an option.


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Originally Posted by Wolfman
I need a concrete amount from loan. I donít have extra $ to throw around. As it is I already have to come up with $xx. Do you think Iím made of $? So once again, Iíve been getting f*#ked all along!!!!! We need to discuss this ASAP.

I am so tired how this is what she wants but she thinks she is getting s*#ewed. How do I respond?
Originally Posted by AnotherStander
Stick to business. "I am available on XX day between XX and XX to discuss, let me know what time works for you." Ignore the emotional part of it. If she continues to rant and rave then establish a boundary. "I will not be spoken to in this manner. If you wish to discuss this in a civil manner then I am happy to listen, but if you are going to launch personal attacks on me then the conversation is over." Don't validate personal attacks.


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Originally Posted by Sandi2
He needs to decide his boundaries. A lot of people have no idea what their boundaries are, or even what it means to enforce boundaries. It is one of the links in the post Cadet gives newcomers. He needs to study it. Decide what principles he can not live without having these honored in his life. Decide what he will not tolerate in his life.

Boundaries are not to be used to police the other person's life. It is to protect him. If the other person crosses that line he has around him for protection, then it is a direct attack on him. It may be rather subtle, or it may be daring.....but they have crossed the line. Now, what will he do about it? Slug it out? No, I don't mean anything physical. What else can he do? Since he cannot control the actions of the other person, then that just leaves him doing the action. Here's the catch......if his action does not cause some type of consequence for the other person, then it is not an effective boundary.

And an ineffective boundary is no boundary at all. He needs to know, in advance, what his actions will be, if his boundary is dishonored........then by all means, know he can carry it through.

He should never make some brave statement and then back away when tested. B/c believe me, the WW is going to test those boundaries,
so he needs to suit up his armor every single day.


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Originally Posted by AnotherStander
A boundary is to protect yourself, and it must have ramifications if it isn't honored.

Let's say your W starts screaming at you, here is an ineffective boundary:

"Stop yelling at me!"

Or what? There's no stated ramification. So she keeps yelling at you and you yell back, or you sit there and cower.

Another ineffective boundary:

"Stop yelling at me or I will ask you to leave."

You can't make her leave, so your ramification is completely dependent upon her choosing whether or not to honor it, and that makes it worthless.

Effective boundary:

"I will not tolerate you raising your voice to me, if you continue to do so I will hang up/ leave."

THIS is a good boundary, because if she continues yelling then YOU take immediate action on your own. If on the phone you simply hang up. If she calls back immediately you don't answer. If it's in person you leave the room or even the house.

So now that you know the difference, you need to understand that if your boundary is going to be something like "I will not remain under the same roof with you if you continue to engage in an affair" then you've got to A) determine a consequence for that and B) be 100% ready to follow through. When you're talking about an A, there is little you can do as far as a consequence other than separate or divorce. And you've got to be very sure you are OK with that, because that is probably what she wants anyway and basically you'll be doing all the hard work she doesn't want to do!

Please note that this isn't "effective" in the sense that it changes anything on her part, because it probably won't. It is effective because it protects YOU from further harm, damage and heartache resulting from her A.

So that's a boundary. As far as canceling Netflix and such, that's up to you but just understand it won't change anything and she will probably think you're being petty and vindictive. Frankly that's kind of a passive/aggressive NGS move.


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Originally Posted by JDevast
Just finding this tough to even be assertive through fear of conflict.
Originally Posted by CWarrior

"Good fences make good neighbors." Asserting your boundaries, and respecting hers, is the potential way out of this recurring conflict. The murkier the borders, the more conflict you're both in for.

Building the wall in the first place, of course, is unpleasant.

[Side note--Robert Frost's "Mending Wall" is credited with this line, but his poem actually disagrees with the concept--at least when neighbors have no basis for potential dispute, the walls simply separate us.]

I love Ready2Change's line in the sand, and that it's at the end after a reasonable proposal instead of the beginning: "If I don't hear back from you by (give her two days to responds), I will plan on following the normal parenting schedule." That you already have an agreed-upon schedule, that gives you the whole week, and you both need to approve exceptions is a strong position and should allow you room to negotiate a deal for this year and future years that gives you both access to the kids without too many exchanges.

In my custody agreement, one of us has Xmas Eve and Morning, the other has Xmas Day and the week after for a winter vacation. A single exchange, and both get to enjoy holiday magic with the kids!


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Originally Posted by adinva
How did you reassert the boundary about emergencies? I'm wondering if you were extremely clear and objective. If so, you would already know what to do, imo.

If I could make a suggestion, it would be this:

W, I am only going to communicate with you about emergencies to do with S. (note - boundary setting is about what you are going to do, not about what you want HER to do. She will, and can, continue to do what she is doing. How you respond is what you control.) So, W, if you call me I will not answer. If you text me what the emergency to do with S is, I will respond if it is in fact an emergency. If you do not text specifics, I will consider it not an emergency and will not respond.

That is what I would consider really clear. And that would inform you whether to respond to "I'm really sorry" texts (no, and don't give it a moment's thought) or to "call me" texts (no, because you are being ambushed with non-emergencies). or to "I want to know how S is doing" (no, because she knows how to reach S directly).


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Originally Posted by Zues126


When your boundaries have been violated it is imperative that you detach completely and refuse to engage in R talks. Because no matter what words you speak, what you're saying is "I'm willing to compromise my boundaries"....So what do you do instead? I'm not saying stone wall. Not at all. If they start an R talk you can certainly VALIDATE. You can demonstrate 180s through your ACTIONS (NOT your words). But you cannot, must not, pour emotional energy into a relationship that doesn't meet your minimum requirements. Continue to work on yourself for you, GAL to meet your emotional needs elsewhere so you don't feel as needy, and be a leader. I always say that you can't expect a WAS to let go of OP if you can't let go of them. Lead by example and show them what it means to take control of your own happiness and act with character.

Now, I'm not suggesting this is the answer to everything. There are certainly limbos where the boundaries aren't black and white. Like a spouse that isn't cheating, hasn't filed, has said they aren't sure what they want yet. This is a difficult situation and there is much more that could be discussed about it. Time means a lot here because if this has gone on for one day that is totally different than 10 years. Each person has to find what they feel is the right boundary. Do you stand for marriage for the rest of your life on character? Do you decide to move on after a year, or six months, and file yourself? Not easy decisions to make.

But in the end, let's be clear that identifying your boundaries based on your beliefs and personal values is the hard part. What to do if someone crosses those boundaries should be very clear and flawlessly executed. And reengaging with a person that has violated your boundaries should happen only in the face of remorse and recommitment. And then it should follow slowly based on consistent positive action.


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Originally Posted by LH19
Think about boundaries like this:

Boundaries are not about controlling the other person, because boundaries are about drawing "circles" around *you* and determining what you will and won't allow inside that circle.

Your wayward wife can do whatever she wants OUTSIDE that circle. You are not telling her what to do.

But you will only let into that circle people who treat you with respect.

She's free to go on treating you with disrespect, but you won't know about it because she'll be outside your circle. She's free to go on and draw her own boundaries of no expectations and no responsibilities, outside your circle.

She can do WHATEVER she wants. She's a free person, free to make WHATEVER choices she wants.

BUT SO ARE YOU, and you are free to choose who to allow within your circle.

That's all. Not about trying to control her at all. Tell her she's totally free. She has the WHOLE WORLD, outside your circle, to go and do whatever she wants.

If she's saying you have to let her into your circle no matter what, then THAT is about HER controlling YOU.


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