Boundaries

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moglow

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #20 on: April 17, 2018, 04:15:03 PM »
Quote from: all4peace
I wonder if I should have been seeing boundary "violations" differently, if it would have helped if I could have kept it less personal.

This is the most literal interpretation of boundaries - establishing where we stop and others begin, separating our individual stuff from "their"/other people's stuff. What others say and do is *all* about them and their stuff, just as it is for each of us (whether disordered or not).

I highly recommend reading (and rereading!) The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz to help with this journey. It's a fairly short easy read, and is very eye opening when we look at our interactions with others through the wisdom of the Agreements. It's helped me step back and depersonalize life with pd individuals more than I ever expected.
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coyote

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #21 on: April 17, 2018, 04:22:36 PM »
I strongly second The Four Agreements. The one "don't take anything personally" in and of itself can change your life.
How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours.
 Wayne Dyer

The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Do you understand?
Capt. Jack Sparrow

Choose not to be harmed and you wonít feel harmed. Donít feel harmed and you havenít been. -Marcus Aurelius

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all4peace

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #22 on: April 17, 2018, 05:48:38 PM »
So, coyote and moglow, are you willing to talk us through the logic/processing that allows you emotional detachment when spoken boundaries are repeatedly violated? What does it look like/sound like? Thanks for what you already shared!

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StayWithMe

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #23 on: April 17, 2018, 06:14:50 PM »
While I get annoyed (or worse) when thinking, if this were someone else, they would not be taking these liberties........ those thoughts don't stop me from enforcing my boundaries.  If that means avoiding them, witholding something that they want or reporting them..... what are other acceptable ways to enforce boundaries? 

I don't see why it is important to not take things personally.

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all4peace

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #24 on: April 17, 2018, 07:03:39 PM »
I don't see why it is important to not take things personally.
We all have our own personalities, life experiences and viewpoints. For me, I got angry, bitter and hateful feelings. That doesn't work for me. It makes me sick, literally and metaphorically. I would have liked to have known how to see this in a way that would have allowed me a healthier path.

For my ILs and parents, it truly isn't personal. This is how they are all with all people, not just me and my family. I wish I could have seen that before my feelings got so intense. It caused me a lot of unnecessary pain, and made me less of who I want to be. It took me to a pretty dark place, when if I had been able to step away, stay calm, carefully construct boundaries and keep it less personal when they repeatedly violated them, I think it would have been different for me.

I think I would have come to the same conclusions, but probably far less painfully and traumatically.

Of course, it's a catch-22, as the very reasons I wasn't able to do this are why I wasn't able to do this.  :stars: So now I want to make sure I have carefully built this foundation very solidly.
« Last Edit: April 17, 2018, 07:11:19 PM by all4peace »

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coyote

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #25 on: April 18, 2018, 11:56:58 AM »
All4peace,
Good question. What Don Miguel Ruiz says is that we all operate from our view of our "dream." We create our own reality through our "walking dream" or in other words our view of the world. When others attack us it has nothing to do with us. It has everything to do with their "dream" that is based in fear. So it is their fear, anxiety, jealousy, envy, dread, panic, anger, sorrow, etc., that drives them to attack us. (By the way, Ruiz says all negative emotions come from one root emotion; fear.)

So by knowing whatever someone else says or does to me has nothing to do with me, and all to do with their own fear, I find it easy to detach. Even to feel pity for someone blindly walking through life unaware of the fear that is driving their thoughts,  feelings, and behavior. I apply this principle to everyone I meet in life but in particular to my deceased father who was extremely abusive to the whole family.

Just one other thought. I don't "ask" when setting boundaries. To me boundaries are about setting limits on how I allow others to treat me based on my personal moral code. Even though I can detach easily enough my moral code dictates that I don't allow myself to be abused. Also boundaries IMO are worthless without logical consequences that can be enforced when boundaries are violated.

So for example, "People are not allowed to show up at my house unannounced." (Never mind the reason that I might be running around naked or whatever, LOL But seriously, I don't have to explain why.). So the consequence would be, "since you showed up unannounced you will not be allowed entry." "You need to call beforehand next time for permission."
How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours.
 Wayne Dyer

The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Do you understand?
Capt. Jack Sparrow

Choose not to be harmed and you wonít feel harmed. Donít feel harmed and you havenít been. -Marcus Aurelius

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Danden

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #26 on: April 18, 2018, 12:52:28 PM »
Well, the idea is that it is about the fears that the other person has, and one should not take it personally.  But it is a personal attack, so how can one not take it personally? 

If the other person is smearing me to others, can I detach from that?  Should I detach from that?  In one sense I can say I will not let it bother me, they will do as they will.  But in another sense, if I have an opportunity to bring it to light, or to let the PD be known for who he/she is, do I not have a moral responsibility to do that, in an appropriate way?  Out of respect for myself and others (who are being lied to)?  I think so.   

If people come over unannounced, and you have told them you don't want them to do that, and they keep doing it, I would just put privacy films on all the windows at eye level, draw the curtains and blinds and pretend you are not home.  Even if the lights are on, that doesn't mean you are home, because maybe you went out and left them on.  If the car is in the driveway, maybe you had a friend come pick you up and you went somewhere.  Just ignore them.  That is what they are doing to your expressed wishes.

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StayWithMe

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #27 on: April 18, 2018, 01:11:01 PM »
Well, the idea is that it is about the fears that the other person has, and one should not take it personally.  But it is a personal attack, so how can one not take it personally? 

If the other person is smearing me to others, can I detach from that?  Should I detach from that?  In one sense I can say I will not let it bother me, they will do as they will.  But in another sense, if I have an opportunity to bring it to light, or to let the PD be known for who he/she is, do I not have a moral responsibility to do that, in an appropriate way?  Out of respect for myself and others (who are being lied to)?  I think so.   

QFT.

I used to "let things go" if I had some idea or hope or was even advised that this person was the same way with other people.  I think more often than not there are a lot of people who are very savvy and have some idea how far they can go with one person as opposed to other whether it's a family social or professional situation.

This is why parents arer keen to shut down a child's "but you didn't ask him to clean up......" or any permutation thereof.

Whether you take something personally or not, it will be your personal choices -- comunnication skills (verbal and non verbal) and so on -- that will make the situation work for you.

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coyote

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #28 on: April 18, 2018, 01:21:16 PM »
Don Miguel Ruiz is a Toltec philosopher. He has a number of good books out. I know he explains it much better than I so I would suggest starting with The Four Agreements and then perhaps exploring some of his other books.

But to answer your question Danden; no, I do not feel any obligation, moral or otherwise, to bring anything to light. If people can't figure out the truth on their own then why would I care; since I take nothing personally.

So do you see how powerful this agreement is? Since I take nothing personally I have no obligation to defend myself to anyone. I am essentially bulletproof. I realize it is somewhat of a paradox, but fo me at least, it really does work.

Oh and as far as pretending not to be at home, I prefer a more open, direct approach when enforcing my boundaries. Again, this is just what works for me.
How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours.
 Wayne Dyer

The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Do you understand?
Capt. Jack Sparrow

Choose not to be harmed and you wonít feel harmed. Donít feel harmed and you havenít been. -Marcus Aurelius

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carrots

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #29 on: April 18, 2018, 01:22:23 PM »
Well, the idea is that it is about the fears that the other person has, and one should not take it personally.  But it is a personal attack, so how can one not take it personally? 

I notice as I slowly heal from CPTSD that some personal attacks just don't touch me any more. I never would have believed it, but it's like water off a duck's back. This isn't the case yet with FOO, probably because the most minor contact with them still sends me into an EF. I don't think it's anything I can change through thought or conscious effort, it really is a by-product of healing from old wounds.

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Starboard Song

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #30 on: April 18, 2018, 01:34:05 PM »
all4peace,

I took way too long to get to this thread.

It has blossomed, and I see you've gotten so much good feedback.

One angle I'd like to emphasize: maintaining boundaries is not like turning the other cheek to be relentlessly abused. When we enforce boundaries by ending a call or visit; when we say "Because you invited the grandchildren on this outing before consulting with me, the answer is no. I will never allow any activity that was planned with the children first."; when we invite people over for a lunch on Christmas Eve, and say "we've decided to preserve Christmas morning for just the four of us, and we want the children to wake in their own home"; these are all decisive.

The problem is -- it seems to me -- that not all behaviors are susceptible of boundary management.

Thanks for this thread!
Radical Acceptance, by Brach   |   Self-Compassion, by Neff    |   Mindfulness, by Williams   |   The Book of Joy, by the Dalai Lama and Tutu
Healing From Family Rifts, by Sichel   |  Stop Walking on Egshells, by Mason    |    Emotional Blackmail, by Susan Forward

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carrots

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #31 on: April 18, 2018, 01:40:13 PM »
Thanks for this thread all4peace. It's given me some good information and some help with a question I posted and got no replies on. So the answer lies in boundaries. Thanks especially to malini for answers.

 I like this ďIíve been thinking about the time you (didÖ or saidÖ) and I would feel more comfortable if you could (something else) next time.Ē
    If youíve been stewing over an incident theyíve probably forgotten, this is a good way of bringing it up and presenting an alternative so they will be able to avoid doing it in the future
especially because of having older stuff I would probably like to address some time. It takes me time to sort out how I feel and then address an issue.

One area I have trouble with is consequences. One consequence of boundaries being disrespected that is recommended on here is: leaving the room, the person, the issue. I used to leave the room or the house when I still lived with FOO as a kid and that was always mocked and ridiculed. I was meant to stay and fight it out (with words and logic mainly). Although I don't try and fight it mostly any more, with FOO anyway.  Leaving the field seems to me like giving up, but I feel as I write that that I'm still in the FOG.

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coyote

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #32 on: April 18, 2018, 02:09:49 PM »
Carrots,
In my view "leaving the field" means that I have control over myself and my decision. I don't fight battles I can't win so if I choose not to fight and leave the field I find it to be very empowering.
How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours.
 Wayne Dyer

The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Do you understand?
Capt. Jack Sparrow

Choose not to be harmed and you wonít feel harmed. Donít feel harmed and you havenít been. -Marcus Aurelius

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moglow

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #33 on: April 18, 2018, 03:48:53 PM »
Quote from: carrots
One area I have trouble with is consequences. One consequence of boundaries being disrespected that is recommended on here is: leaving the room, the person, the issue. I used to leave the room or the house when I still lived with FOO as a kid and that was always mocked and ridiculed. I was meant to stay and fight it out (with words and logic mainly). Although I don't try and fight it mostly any more, with FOO anyway.  Leaving the field seems to me like giving up, but I feel as I write that that I'm still in the FOG.

That makes perfect sense to me - mine was/is much the same. It too me a very long time to understand that Mother really likes the conflict, the drama of it all. When I was a child in her home I wasn't allowed a voice, and forget walking away when she  went too far. I wasn't allowed to defend myself in any way. Mother *wanted* the tears, wanted any possible justification for whatever was simmering just under the facade she was hiding behind. She was and remains, a bully. And she laughs about it.

I tell you that because at the end of the day, that's all it boiled down to:  Mother is a bully and she's going to bully whenever opportunity presents (or when she can invent opportunity) - she gets a charge out of it. That's ALL on her, has not one thing to do with me as a human being or as her daughter. She searches an outlet and unloads on whatever is convenient for her.

For me, walking away and/or shutting it down by whatever means isn't giving up at all - it's me taking much-needed care of myself. I'll remove others who manage to fall in her line of sight as well. Mother doesn't have to like or agree with it, and can just get (more) mad. My first responsibility is to myself and my well-being, doing the right thing. Placating and allowing her to spew all over me (or others) is no longer the right thing. It never worked, and I paid a high price for it in the end.

What she (or others, in her defense) says or does or thinks of my decision has nothing to do with her. I don't discuss or explain myself further - all that's ever done in the past is give her ammunition for the next or some future round. No thanks! I don't set out to deliberately hurt mother or anyone else, and neither will I stand there and allow them to abuse me.

Does that help?
« Last Edit: April 18, 2018, 04:04:11 PM by moglow »
"Expectations are disappointments under construction.Ē  ~ Cap'n Spanky

Stop Stinkin' Thinkin'!

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carrots

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #34 on: April 18, 2018, 04:50:26 PM »
Thanks Coyote, and especially moglow for explaining in more detail. That sounds very familiar moglow.  A person wanting justification for whatever simmering under their facade. Certainly M and B1. And laughing about it. B1 and F.

This 'leaving the room' is essentially going VLC or NC. I was right to do it then, even though I was mocked and ridiculed. I have noticed in therapy that some of my reactions as a kid were more mature than M and F's! Some of it has to do with my role as SG but my being SG has nothing to do with me or my worth as a person. It was a complex bunch of circumstances which induced M to give me that role more or less at birth and convinced others to go along with it. 

So it goes back to the I can't Cure it part of the 3Cs. Can't Cure it, so self-care - get self out of it and stay there. Find healthier people. Think it might take a while for that to sift down into my feelings and behavior but it does help, yes!

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all4peace

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #35 on: April 22, 2018, 11:54:01 AM »
Well, the idea is that it is about the fears that the other person has, and one should not take it personally.  But it is a personal attack, so how can one not take it personally? 

If the other person is smearing me to others, can I detach from that?  Should I detach from that?  In one sense I can say I will not let it bother me, they will do as they will.  But in another sense, if I have an opportunity to bring it to light, or to let the PD be known for who he/she is, do I not have a moral responsibility to do that, in an appropriate way?  Out of respect for myself and others (who are being lied to)?  I think so.   

QFT.

I used to "let things go" if I had some idea or hope or was even advised that this person was the same way with other people.  I think more often than not there are a lot of people who are very savvy and have some idea how far they can go with one person as opposed to other whether it's a family social or professional situation.

This is why parents arer keen to shut down a child's "but you didn't ask him to clean up......" or any permutation thereof.

Whether you take something personally or not, it will be your personal choices -- comunnication skills (verbal and non verbal) and so on -- that will make the situation work for you.
I wanted to add that I feel it's important to acknowledge that we all have different "ingredients" in our stories, and I do not mean to imply at all that what I'm aiming for is what others "should be" aiming for. Not at all! When I get done exploring this topic I may end up right back where I began after all. But I do want to thoroughly explore it.

I don't know if this is what coyote meant, but on the topic of smearing I can tell you how it used to be for me and how it's developing now. When first limiting contact with my ILs, with whom we share multiple social circles, I had a lot of fear of what they would be saying about us. I think much of that fear faded because we found our friends and family to be unchanged in their behavior and attitudes towards us, so there really wasn't a "cost." But partly I came to have a much more solid sense of who we were, where we stood, and why that mattered. Basically, rather than my energy, thoughts and fear being  "other" centered, we became centered in our own lives, marriage and family.

As it became about what was healthy for us, what worked for us, what was necessary for us, what everyone else thought started to fade away. It simply didn't matter. And as it faded away, so did a lot of the fear, energy and anger. They could think as they wished. We weren't there to defend or refute. We were simply living our lives, as best as we could, and they could think what they wanted.

Ironically, this week I was given the challenge by T to "find my jurisdiction" in prep for contact with my parents again. He thought it would be hard for me, which is like waving a red flag in front of a bull for my stubborn self, and I found I was suddenly very, very clear about our boundaries.

*In our family, our home is a safe zone. If someone is unable to be kind to any single member of our family, that is certainly their right and we will not invite them into our home.

*In our family, we spend time with safe people. If someone is a chronic liar, destabilizing in their interpersonal relations, and not trustworthy, we are only willing to spend very limited public time with them a couple times per year. Anything more is simply not healthy for our family, and we only allow that much for the sake of the extended family.

*In our family, we do what is best for our family, our marriage, our children. We are not ruled by FOG. We understand that this may upset people in our lives who think they should have greater access to our family, but we make the decisions for our family. If some type of contact isn't good for any person in our family, then we will not have that kind of contact.


So, for sure I have gotten furious and anxious and upset when our PD parents have tried to work their way around our previously spoken boundaries. I felt so much anger and frustration and even hate at times that the people who were "supposed to" love us were instead disrespecting and undermining us. However, one thing about boundaries (I think, someone correct me if needed) is that they help ME figure out where MY boundaries are also. Which means that I don't need to feel personally hurt when someone disrespects my boundaries. I have certainly accidentally disrespected other people's boundaries, and if they were kind and gracious enough to point them out to me then I could start learning and respecting them. If someone continues to disrespect MY boundaries, then it says something about them and not much about me.

Just me thinking out loud...

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chowder

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #36 on: April 22, 2018, 11:30:40 PM »
Stay with Me, the cousin-in-law is like this with everyone that I've seen, and there certainly has been some head-butting when that happens.  Her husband doesn't see it, at least to the extent that some of us do.  He has accepted her role in his life as the one in charge, and it has morphed into him just letting her take over.  He lived as a bachelor for many years.  When she moved in with him, she took over as if it were her place.  He allowed that to happen.

You mentioned that you were taught to help out when you went to other people's homes, though eventually you felt it was not always welcome help.  Kudos to you for picking up on that and being sensitive to someone else's wishes.  It is their home, and kitchens especially can be someone's precious domain.  Good for you!