Some people in our lives disrespect our needs and wishes without us realizing it, whether it’s someone from work, a family member, or a friend or partner. Setting boundaries in our lives is important because it keeps us safe and helps our needs to be met. Such boundaries could be physical, emotional, or romantic, and can suck our time and energy.
However, there are very common ways your boundaries can get crossed.
You receive things that you didn’t ask for
You, and Here’s What to Do About It
To feel heard and understood is important, like if you and your partner agreed to save money and not buy each other expensive presents. This is an important part of having a respectful relationship with someone.
This can leave you feeling guilty for not appreciating such gifts. It’s important here to reclarify your feelings and let them know that you had not agreed on this.
You justify their behavior
For example, saying things like: “He only behaves like this when he’s stressed,” and “She makes fun of me, but I know she loves me really,” are not beneficial.
Instead, it’s important to recognize such behavior and then communicate what you don’t appreciate about it. Set up a boundary by communicating the consequences of their behavior, such as: “I will feel unhappy if you do that,” or “You’ll have to leave if you continue.”
You blame yourself when things go wrong
This is common when boundaries are crossed as you take on the responsibilities of others. For example, if you and your family throw a party, you may end up doing everything on your own. When it starts to fall apart, you blame yourself for not being good enough.
Instead, it’s crucial to understand that you were not the only person responsible for the party and that perhaps it didn’t work out because no one helped you. Don’t take on the responsibilities of others — decide your contribution and stick to it.
You feel guilty about letting people down
This could be seen in a situation where you have a planned night off from the kids but your partner keeps calling you, saying that your children miss you, which makes you feel guilty about not being there.
But remember that this is your night off and your partner has the responsibility of giving you this time. Firmly set up your boundaries so that you can focus on your own responsibilities, and your partner will have to deal with their own.