Do You Have Boundaries?

I hope you guys enjoyed your Memorial Day Weekend and had time to visit family, friends and eat great food. Mine was interesting but I enjoyed it nonetheless. I was able to catch up with my girl friends this weekend and what happens when you get a bunch of girls together? Yup, we talk about our love life or lack of one, depending on the situation.

As I listened to the stories, I couldn’t help think that men choose and women settle. Well not all women but for the majority, most do. Why is it that men can say I want this and I want that and it’s perfectly fine but because women don’t want to rock the boat or lose the guy, they go along with it and get disappointed when things don’t turn out the way they like?

My answer is because their boundaries are not defined. 

It is impossible to have a healthy relationship with someone who has no boundaries, with someone who cannot communicate directly, and honestly.  Learning how to set boundaries is a necessary step in learning to be a friend to yourself.  It is our responsibility to take care of ourselves – to protect ourselves when it is necessary.  It is impossible to learn to be loving to ourselves without owning our self – and owning our rights and responsibilities as co-creators of our lives.

When you know what you will and won’t tolerate, it’s a lot easier to go through the dating world. Now, I understand when feelings get involved things can get blurred but if you don’t have boundaries set up for yourself, you can and unknowingly allow someone to treat you any way they like; when you finally get fed up, you’ll realize that the relationship was not beneficial to you in the long or even short-term.

The purpose of having boundaries is to protect and take care of ourselves.  We need to be able to tell other people when they are acting in ways that are not acceptable to us.  A first step is starting to know that we have a right to protect and defend ourselves.  That we have not only the right, but the duty to take responsibility for how we allow others to treat us.

Listening to story after story of what my friends were putting up with to be with the guy that they like I couldn’t help but cringe. Looking into the situation, I could spot issues and red alarms that would normally make me retreat but because they wanted this person/relationship SO bad they dismissed these obvious and glaring signs.

Qualifications do not make a man qualified to be in a relationship. – Dr. Dwayne L. Buckingham, a psychotherapist and relationship counselor. 

Yes, he may be considerate. Yes, he may be smart and intelligent. Yes, he may be tall and handsome. Yes, he makes your heart go boom da boom da boom da boom bass. Yes, sexually he satisfies you. But what is all of that if he doesn’t respect your core values and boundaries that you have placed?

Not a damn thing.

So ladies, what boundaries do you have in place? Do you even know what they are? Learning to set boundaries is vital to learning to love Your self, and to communicating to other’s that YOU have worth.

There are basically three parts to setting a boundary.  The first two are setting the boundary – the third is what we will do to defend that boundary.

If you – a description of the behavior we find unacceptable (again being as descriptive as possible.)I 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.

If you continue this behavior – a description of what steps you will take to protect the boundary that you have set.

Will you tolerate someone  only texting you when you want phone calls and face to face time? Will you tolerate dishonesty and lack of respect? Will you tolerate being used as someone’s sperm receptacle? Will you allow someone to talk down on you or even hit you? If that is a resounding NO than you have boundaries but the big question is are they actually put into place.

If not, than do so early on and reinforce them throughout the relationship. When someone knows that you have boundaries and that you actually live by them than less BS should and will occur. When I date guys, I ask for clear and effective communication; that is something I will continuous push.  I understand that some conversations may be awkward and uncomfortable but I try not to jump into the assumption band wagon.

When you know the intent of the person you are dealing with, it saves a lot of  nights analyzing and more importantly it saves your heart. Not everyone is going to respect your boundaries but it’s better to know earlier than when your heart is fully invested.

So ladies and gents, know your boundaries and stick to them. If you don’t know what your boundaries are, asses those before you start dating. Once you have found out what they are, apply them and reinforce them when needed.

Good luck!



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