Author Topic: Boundaries  (Read 1585 times)

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Hope

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Boundaries
« on: April 04, 2010, 08:00:04 PM »
I heard a few mentions of the book, Boundaries.  I never read the book, but wondered if those who have would like to share some highlights. 
Is it helping those who've read it?
Thanks in advance for sharing.
Hugs, Hope

cocobars

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #1 on: April 05, 2010, 05:30:34 AM »
I agree with hope and I've noticed Anna has asked about it in another thread. Please do share some things with us Chickie.

Hope

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #2 on: April 05, 2010, 04:46:31 PM »
How fun - we are expecting together, Anna!  :)   Our grandbaby is due July 14th.  This is the one that was a long time coming - they had to go the extra mile to get pregnant.  We are all so excited!  First gc on both sides of the family.  It's a sure thing you'll see plenty of your grand baby if you are still caring for them every day.  I remember you saying that your dil doesn't have the luxury of giving up her job, but they are considering getting a pet which would throw your allergies into orbit.  I'm apprehensive about how much actual baby time we'll get.  With my luck, we will be promoted to dog sitting while dil's parents get promoted to babysitting.  We'll have to compare notes.   ;)
Hugs, Hope

willingtohelp

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #3 on: April 07, 2010, 11:31:21 AM »
My *very* short summary.....adults have the right to say "No" to things and have that decision be respected.  No explanations are necessary, guilt trips aren't appropriate, and no one can command them to do otherwise unless the decision is against the law.  These basic principles are echoed over and over with religious and psychological arguments to back them up, but that's the basic core, or at least I thought so.  Overall, I wasn't impressed with the book.  I felt they went around the world to make some fairly simple points.  Maybe they just needed extra pages?

2chickiebaby

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #4 on: April 07, 2010, 07:32:24 PM »
No explanations are necessary.  So I ask someone to dinner & they say no.  That's it, nothing else.  Just NO.  Weeeeellllllll. I think an explanation may be nice, or a "we can't make it that night but how about ______night?"   Sounds pretty rude to me.

Anna, it IS rude....let's try to promote a civilized society, which we've lost by the way.  The bullying is only one factor
in the breakdown of our society.  Unbelievable that people can't behave like humans should.

willingtohelp

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #5 on: April 07, 2010, 07:53:50 PM »
Not so much in that sense, but more of the if you invite someone to dinner and they say, I'm sorry but I can't make it then, can we reschedule, you don't demand to know what else they have that's more important and then barter to see if you can get them to go to both or reschedule.  The idea being that a person's schedule is theirs to control.  They can accept an invitation or decline an invitation and are not obligated to provide a "good enough" reason to decline.  The idea of the book is that the person setting the boundary is an autonomous individual who can think and choose for himself or herself.  In setting boundaries, one affirms their ability to choose by refusing to give in to guilt trips over a choice, not feeling the need to justify a choice to others, and not allowing someone else to choose for you.   The rest of the book seems to be justification for doing these things.  But I'm not the only person who has read the book.  What did other people think? 

Hope

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #6 on: April 07, 2010, 08:00:55 PM »
Thanks for the summary, Clover.
I know you didn't write the book, you are just relaying how you summarize it.  But from what you wrote, the way I understand it is the person who wants the relationship the most will not be saying "no" because they care too much about the relationship.  Then, the person who can take or leave the relationship without trying to improve it can say "no" without any explanation and without any consideration for the other person.  I hope my understanding is off base. 
Hugs, Hope

2chickiebaby

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #7 on: April 07, 2010, 08:04:33 PM »
Not so much in that sense, but more of the if you invite someone to dinner and they say, I'm sorry but I can't make it then, can we reschedule, you don't demand to know what else they have that's more important and then barter to see if you can get them to go to both or reschedule.  The idea being that a person's schedule is theirs to control.  They can accept an invitation or decline an invitation and are not obligated to provide a "good enough" reason to decline.  The idea of the book is that the person setting the boundary is an autonomous individual who can think and choose for himself or herself.  In setting boundaries, one affirms their ability to choose by refusing to give in to guilt trips over a choice, not feeling the need to justify a choice to others, and not allowing someone else to choose for you.   The rest of the book seems to be justification for doing these things.  But I'm not the only person who has read the book.  What did other people think?

It's just a matter of common courtesy....not asking that we return to the gentile Southern ways but can we simply have
a thought for someone else's feelings?  I'm not going to really read the book if it tells me to say, "no" when invited to
something.  I do want to spare someone's feelings when they've extended an invitation.

Like, "I can't come this time but would love to come again".  What on earth could be wrong with that?

willingtohelp

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #8 on: April 07, 2010, 08:07:13 PM »
That's mentioned in the book as well.  To me it seemed like a guideline sort of.  Sort of saying you should set boundaries and interact with people who respect them.  If you come to the impasse where your boundaries prevent you from having a relationship with someone, you have to decide....would you rather have the relationship or your boundaries?  I don't know that I'd say the book tells people to ever be intentionally rude, though.  It's more a Miss Manners method of distance....the "I'm sorry but that won't work for me"'s.

OK, I'm not going to summerize anymore....the book does a much better job, and my condensing it into a paragraph stinks.  I'm a biochem major not an English major.  Please keep that in mind. 

Offline Pen

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #9 on: April 07, 2010, 10:10:28 PM »
I understand the concept that adults get to say "no" and do not have to feel guilty about it. IMHO, it should go both ways, though, and not just be used when convenient by someone who has an agenda. Also, it seems to me that boundaries should be something one sets up as a personal protective shield, not as a leash or a controlling mechanism for someone else. As in all human interactions, civility, manners, respect and politeness should always be present. It may be that the concept of boundaries is being misused; I don't know since I've not read the book.
Respect ... is appreciation of the separateness of the other person, of the ways in which he or she is unique.
-- Annie Gottlieb

cocobars

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #10 on: April 08, 2010, 07:05:45 AM »
I would agree Pen.  I haven't read the book either, but had the impression it was about setting protective boundaries.  Is that wrong?

I would believe most of us have boundaries if that were the case, in most of our relationships.

Offline Scoop

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #11 on: April 08, 2010, 08:29:19 AM »
I think it's not just about boundaries by themselves, it's about where your boundaries are.

For example, (a long time ago, before we were even married) when I got a new job, my MIL asked my DH what my salary was and he told her.  I was SO MAD, because for me (because of how I was raised and how things were / are for my family) we do NOT talk about money like that.  I made sure to tell him that it didn't bother me if he told anyone HIS salary, but he was NOT to disclose MINE, or anything to do with "our" finances.  So obviously, my boundary and his were different and we had to scuffle a bit to get ourselves lined up. 

Another example I'm having a hard time with right now, is an acquaintance who thinks she's a closer friend than she actually is.  She's discussing things I'm not comfortable talking about, and she's asking questions that are a bit too personal for our level of friendship.  I like her, so I'm still friendly with her, but I am pulling back a little.   It is a bit 'off-putting' to me.

I think for most people, they realize that boundaries are, at least a little bit, flexible to allow for differences between people.  However, the problem comes when people come together, with completely different ideas of what the boundaries should be.  Even then, that can work.

I think the real problem occurs when one (or both) of those people declares their boundary as completely INFLEXIBLE and the ONLY one that is correct.  (Hey have you met my SIL?  She's like that - her way is the ONLY correct way, and if she completely changes her idea overnight, her NEW way is still the ONLY correct way.)


2chickiebaby

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #12 on: April 08, 2010, 08:48:01 AM »
I think it's not just about boundaries by themselves, it's about where your boundaries are.

For example, (a long time ago, before we were even married) when I got a new job, my MIL asked my DH what my salary was and he told her.  I was SO MAD, because for me (because of how I was raised and how things were / are for my family) we do NOT talk about money like that.  I made sure to tell him that it didn't bother me if he told anyone HIS salary, but he was NOT to disclose MINE, or anything to do with "our" finances.  So obviously, my boundary and his were different and we had to scuffle a bit to get ourselves lined up. 

Another example I'm having a hard time with right now, is an acquaintance who thinks she's a closer friend than she actually is.  She's discussing things I'm not comfortable talking about, and she's asking questions that are a bit too personal for our level of friendship.  I like her, so I'm still friendly with her, but I am pulling back a little.   It is a bit 'off-putting' to me.

I think for most people, they realize that boundaries are, at least a little bit, flexible to allow for differences between people.  However, the problem comes when people come together, with completely different ideas of what the boundaries should be.  Even then, that can work.

I think the real problem occurs when one (or both) of those people declares their boundary as completely INFLEXIBLE and the ONLY one that is correct.  (Hey have you met my SIL?  She's like that - her way is the ONLY correct way, and if she completely changes her idea overnight, her NEW way is still the ONLY correct way.)

See, that's good to know, Scoop...you just never know what some people are skiddish about discussing.  For instance, we had
lively debates here...it was always fun for us and a real IQ lifter.

The DIL (#1), thought it was crazy.  She talks about meaningless things (that's the way it appears to me).   She has a good
heart and is a great Mother.  Terrible DIL.  I'm beginning to think she doesn't know any better.  Her Mother was an
alcoholic.  (refined and not skid row type)  so I know she has issues.

The problem is that you can't reach her and I have to reach someone to feel a bond with them.  She only knows:  "get it
done, get the job completed, march on....that kind of thing.  Everything else is nonsense to her.  It's hard....we are polar opposites.  That's okay, though.  I'm getting boundaries. 

2chickiebaby

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Re: Boundaries
« Reply #13 on: April 08, 2010, 03:04:19 PM »
Some people carry the boundaries thing too far.  My dil would be the one to just say "no, & I don't owe you an explanation !!"  The end.  That's what she may get out of that book.  It really depends on the person reading the book, & their interpretation of it.  Some people like to try to justiy cutting off family.  They can say "well they over-stepped my boundaries so they can't see their gc any more", when their boundaries may have been totally unreasonable !!  I know that's what has been happening in my situation.

Yes, Anna, you're so right.  Common courtesy is what our society needs more than any book to read.  Why can't we just
be kind to each other?  We have resorted to needing a book to read now instead of treating others with respect.