Guest Post by Tami Thayne and Camille Anderson
Good personal boundaries protect you. They are based on your beliefs, thoughts, feelings, decisions, choices, wants, needs, and intuitions. They are clear, firm, maintained, and sometimes flexible. A person with good boundaries is not seen as hurtful, harmful, controlling or manipulating. (Cloud & Townsend, 1992).
Results of abuse If a child has been injured by the exploitation of another it is difficult to establish boundaries because of the extreme damage to the character structure of the child.
As adults they may suffer from: Depression, Compulsive disorders, Impulsive disorders, Isolation, Inability to trust others, Inability to form close attachments, Inability to set limits, Poor judgment in relationships, Further exploitation in relationships, Deep sense of pervasive badness, Shame/ Guilt, Chaotic lifestyle, Sense of meaninglessness and purposelessness, Unexplainable terror and panic attacks, Phobias, Rage attacks, or Suicidal feelings and thoughts.
Good Boundaries can aid the victim in their recovery and healing process (Cloud & Townsend, 1992).
Boundaries and your self : We have responsibility to ourselves to control our own body and cravings.
Some examples of poor internal boundary conflicts are excesses in: Eating, Money, Time, Task completion, The tongue, Sexuality, and Substance abuse. Learning self-boundaries is not easy but worth it. As we grow in self-boundaries we increase our self-trust and in turn trust others. However, we need to recognize safe people versus unsafe people (Whitfield, 1993).
Essentials for Recovery Handle any distractions to recovery. Learn to live from true self. Learn about our feelings. Learn to grieve. Learn to tolerate emotional pain. Learn to set healthy boundaries and limits. Get our needs met. Experientially learn and know the difference between our True and false self. Work through core issues. Learn that the core of our being is Love. Learn healthy and effective ways of expressing and setting boundaries by being assertive rather than aggressive (Whitfield, 1993).
As you begin your recovery journey of developing boundaries be aware of your increased feelings of anger. Individuals with injured boundaries often are shocked by the rage they feel inside when they begin setting limits. This is generally not “new and”—it’s “old anger”. It’s often years of no’s that were never voiced, never respected, and never listened to. Anger provides us with a sense of power to solve a problem. It energizes us to protect ourselves, those we love, and our principles. As with all emotions, anger doesn’t understand time. Anger doesn’t dissipate automatically if the danger occurred two minutes ago – or twenty years ago! It has to be worked through appropriately. Otherwise, anger simply lives inside the heart.
Another good post on boundaries: http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/prescriptions-life/201311/7-ways-protect-your-energy-enforce-healthy-boundaries
(Whitfield, 1993). References Cloud, H. PhD, & Townsend, J. PhD. (1992). Boundaries: When to say yes when to say no to take Control of Your Life. Orange, CA: Yates & Yates, LLP. Whitfield, C. L. M.D. (1993). Boundaries and relationships: Knowing, protecting and Enjoying the Self, MD: Health Communications, Inc. See also: http://www.utahmentalhealthservices.com/good-personal-boundaries-keep-you-safe-and-happy/
Camille Curtis Anderson, MSW, LCSW
Contact Me | Utah Mental Health Services 801.472.7134 firstname.lastname@example.org Like my Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/UtahMentalHealthServices