“Healthy boundaries protect without isolating, contain without imprisoning, and preserve identity while permitting external connections. Good boundaries make good neighbors. “
Anne Katherine, M.A. “Boundaries. Where You End and I Begin”
SECURITY ATTACHMENT AND BOUNDARIES
Walking around Port Townsend last weekend my wife picked up a couple books for us to read together. Me, being stoked to come together on something with my wife, grabbed the first book and finished it in two days…… BOUNDARIES!!! Yes! I have a million of those! I’m like a fucking fortress!!!! Lol, If I had a dollar for every time I laughed at someone with love and said, “Lol, You can’t fuck with me”(and they moved back), I could literally build a fortress.
I attach to and trust people by choice. MY CHOICE.
In the book my wife and I are committed to reading together it became clear to me that there was a time when the boundary issue I had was that I lived in fear of people not respecting me… (Probably due to some shit around one of the assholes that helped himself to my vagina with a knife, or the fact that he paid for it in dope to somebody else). I did not know intrinsically that I deserved respect and that my boundaries can be met nicely. I don’t have to run anyone over to be heard.
But A few years ago a friend of mine who called me “queen Carmen “ called regularly for my time. I was nervous that he would not respect me if I told him I didn’t have time for him. I felt that he might think I’m not together. I also worried he may not feel like I cared if I told him the truth. Finally, after the tenth call that month I answered. Shaking, I said,” D, I’m so sorry, and I usually have my shit together, but I need like thirty days. I’ve got a LOT going on and I just need to give myself a month. I waited for the sarcasm and the rude comment about not being stable to come out of his mouth. He said,” ok well, you’re the queen. I understand you need to run your family. I’ll talk to you in thirty days. You got this, whatever it is. Much love to you queen“. I could hear his voice smiling. He meant everything he said. He just handed me my space…I couldn’t really believe it. I still wasn’t sure that I still had the respect of my friend. I decided to wait it out. If he called…. great. If not, I would treat my next friend better. I would force myself to put them first. Exactly thirty days later I received a call. My friend actually called and was happy to hear about my month. He told me he would love to see me if I had the time. I had no idea I could ask for space and time for myself and still be wanted. This was the beginning of me learning that my boundaries would not have to be forced on people who I would call, “My People”. Since then I have changed “my people”. I’ve lost many, but in hindsight not much other than stress, and being sorry. I believe that my boundaries are acceptable and I do not have to shout them.
I choose, today, to live in a world where my body and my time are valuable. I will not settle in any relationship for anything less than what is intrinsically mine. My right to peace, space, time and self. Maybe I am insecure but perhaps that is because people, other than my people, have shown an inability to support my needs.
So, what about the very different boundaries of my wife? My wife, in my opinion has few boundaries. Ex. People walk into her house while she’s having sex and she apologizes to them while she gets dressed. Amazingly, these people help themselves to the Living room and wait, while lightly accepting her apology. As if it were owed!!! An ex of hers was asked once to return a baseball bat to our home. My wife (girlfriend at the time) instructed her ex to leave it out against the garage near our driveway. When this ex arrived she saw that the front door was open and that someone was in the house. She did not knock, she did not announce herself. She opened the door aggressively, dropped the bat into the living area, and gruffly said to my ten year old, “there’s Cori’s bat”, and slammed the door. I had a talk with my spouse about this. I explained that I was unwilling to have people feel free to just walk into any space that my daughter and I are in without invite and good intentions. Especially, though with the obvious targeting of people who live in this home, my wife included. She got after this person. This lady defended her childish and frankly abusive actions. My wife accepted this and did not draw a clear boundary about future expectations.( my wife states that she has no control over the way people act) This person is not allowed in my home but only because I won’t have it. Two weeks ago this person texted my wife with a photo stating that she will always love my wife the way she always did. It would be clear to anyone that this woman is testing the boundaries of my relationship while establishing the boundaries of hers, lol in my marriage…my marriage!! My marriage!? These kinds of statements are also not met with any sort of response stating boundaries. I choose not to react to these huge displays of disrespect knowing that’s what the other woman wants, but will eventually have to demand the respect I deserve. I hope that it will be handed to me before I need to act, or it could be catastrophic. Living with someone whose boundaries are looser than my own has proven to make me more nervous. I have reverted to the way I acted when I wasn’t safe to say “please don’t talk that way in my home”, or “I need 30 days before I see your face.” Now I want to choke people. Like I did before I knew I had a right to my privacy. It will do no good for me to try and make myself smaller. I am me. I no longer fight for my respect. It’s already mine I simply won’t settle for less.
Me being huge on boundaries and my wife having far less. How can we both feel free, safe, and not controlled by the other? How can she feel free if I’m always putting heavier boundaries on her people because they make my space chaotic? How can I feel safe if I’m being invaded by people who are willing to disrespect our space and freedom? I think sometimes my boundaries make me look controlling because my standard is different and both standards must be met. She is the one who often makes the change. I.e.… visiting some friends outside of the home, or having to tell someone it’s better that they knock before entering, or better yet call, in case someone is naked. Communication is key. It is my job to explain what makes me nervous and why it feels like it is crossing a boundary. Whether it seems obvious to me or not I am accountable to explain that I want to be able to finish having sex with my wife even if so and so is bringing grapes by and left their phone and does not want to make another trip. When I am naked in my bed touching my wife’s body alone I, and she, no matter that she doesn’t recognize it, deserve to do that freely with each other uninterrupted by people that we don’t share our bodies with. It is my wife’s job to communicate when my boundaries cross hers. I.e. they are too restrictive. So that we can come to a place where her needs are met.
My problem is trying to change her. I feel she is trampled on by people who say they love her. I want to excuse them from her space with my foot. Then I realize she can make choices and it’s her who allows these things into her life. We are married but separate people. As stated in the first blog our goal is to remain separate beings. Her boundaries do not reflect mine and I still deserve to feel like me. Her decisions do not define me, and mine do not define her. I cannot make people respect her according to my limits, but can expect it for me. When I try to make her want what I want I am controlling. I can see myself being the person I hate to see her around. No limits=no respect. Point and case!!!!
Boundaries set……” I respect your decisions for you, but I won’t have it for me. So, please do not bring it to my table”. That is my boundary with the world. I can’t imagine my wife wanting to be the one person disrespecting me……
Now communication. Lol that should be fun.