Community Built Knowledge Base => Library: Tools and skills workshops => Topic started by: united for now on February 07, 2012, 01:49:15 PM

Title: 1.08 | Boundaries - examples
Post by: united for now on February 07, 2012, 01:49:15 PM
This thread is about "examples".  In this thread we will discuss your value, your boundaries and how to defend your boundaries.
For some background information with more depth, there is a great discussion regarding the 3 types of boundaries (mental, emotional, physical) that everyone should read on this thread:
BOUNDARIES: Upholding our values and independence (https://bpdfamily.com/content/values-and-boundaries)
Remember, our values and the boundaries of those values aren't about someone else. They are about how we choose to live our lives.
I have an eye analogy.  Eyelids play an important role in protecting our vision, right?  In this case, vision is the value.  To have good vision, dirt and dust are seen as harmful to the eye - thus we need a boundary to keep our eyes safe. Eyelids block the dirt and push the dust out - this is our boundary defense in action.
Eyelids don't try to control or punish or change the dirt, they just protect the "vision", consistently, day in, day out - often in subtle ways, sometimes in very visible ways - 400 million times in a lifetime.
:light: Defending boundaries (without values) tends to be shallow, reactive, and confrontational

Relating our boundary defenses back to the value is very important.  If we don't do this, we run the risk of losing sight of our objective - and we may make matters worse. To be constructive, we need to have realistic values and we need to understand what our responsibilities are if we want to truly live them. Talk is cheap.
There are 3 parts, the values we have, the boundaries of those values, and the actions we take when the boundaries are threatened.
Some examples:

Value:Important aspect of life that I commit to live fully.
Boundary:Defining what falls outside of my value, what is unacceptable.
Action:One of the options I have when a boundary is threatened.

Value:I treat everybody with respect
Boundary:It is not respectful to dominate or control by screaming
Action:Communicate my values. Lead by example (education - proactive)

Value:I treat everybody with respect
Boundary:It is not respectful to dominate or control by screaming
Action:When a hot topics begin to simmer, I redirect the discussion to a safer topic.  (incident avoidance - proactive).

Value:I treat everybody with respect
Boundary:It is not respectful to dominate or control by screaming
Action:I will take a time out or hang up (incident avoidance - reactive).

Value:I treat everybody with respect
Boundary:One cannot be respected in a consistently verbally abusive environment.
Action:I will remove myself permanently from the environment or until there is change (total avoidance).
From the examples above you can see that a value has many boundaries.  There are also many ways to defend your boundary. Defenses can be as simple as communicating and educating the other person.  It can be a comprehensive as leaving a relationship.
In all of these cases I am "not" telling the other person how to behave, what to do or not do or in any way trying to dictate to them how to live their life.  I am telling them how "I" behave, how "I" live.  I am clearly controlling that which I can -- myself.
Lets look at some boundaries that are being stepped over in your life. Can you break them down in terms of the value, boundary, and defenses?
Some questions:
* What are you doing now (defenses)?
* How is it working?
* Is it possible you sent mixed messages, in actions or words or inconsistency, about your value?
* During a calm moment, have you worked with your partner to try to find a solution together?
* Have you worked to educate your partner?

Title: Re: Examples of defending boundaries
Post by: Auspicious on February 09, 2012, 12:48:06 PM
An example from my life:
Value:Financial stability is important to me (future and present).
Boundary:We should not spend money that we don't have.
Action:I will lead by example by not spending excessively. If my wife wants to spend excessively, I will not help her do so. If I need to, I will increase the separation of our finances to make sure that I do not participate in excessive spending.

Title: Re: Examples of defending boundaries
Post by: tamerlamb on February 09, 2012, 03:54:59 PM
VALUE: Compassion and respect are important in marriage

BOUNDARY: Spouses should not rage at, yell at or call names at each other

ACTION:  I will lead by example and thoughtfully consider my responses to unjust blame or criticism and express myself in a clear and calm way.  If I need to remind my spouse of my boundary verbally I will. If my spouse continues communicating in this unhealthy manner I will leave the room or home for a time so I can have distance from the destructive and abusive behavior.

Title: Re: Examples of defending boundaries
Post by: united for now on February 09, 2012, 04:30:39 PM
So your values are compassion and respect in marriage, and one boundary of that is to "not engage in name calling and yelling"  |iiii

I think many of us get caught in our own need to be right that we follow their lead into dysregulation... .leading to an escalation in the conflict... .

Being polite and not participating is possible... .

They may not like it, and may try to provoke you. This is why its important to know your long term values and beliefs, otherwise its too easy to fall back into old patterns of following their lead.

Title: Re: Examples of defending boundaries
Post by: Steph on February 09, 2012, 05:54:50 PM
 Here is one that would have been helpful for us, before recovery

Value: We are both  human and entitled to our own thoughts, ideas, perceptions

Boundary: There is no need for me  to always be right, explain myself in detail  nor defend myself with every disagreement.

Action: I can learn to be a better listener, strive to understand and let my partner have the space for his own feelings. I can learn to exit gracefully if needed.

Title: Re: Examples of defending boundaries
Post by: iluminati on February 09, 2012, 08:36:36 PM
Value: I believe in open and honest communication in a relationship.

Boundary: Messages should not be delivered in less than an open and honest manner.

Action: I will leave the room if I perceive that there isn't open and honest communication AND there is no attempt to clarify.

Title: Re: Examples of defending boundaries
Post by: Wanda on February 10, 2012, 06:53:50 AM
okay fast forward to today mostly today I am dealing with my kids who are in their 20's


VALUE= financial responsibility is important to me

BOUNDRY= when i don't have the money I cannot help others financially no matter how great the need

ACTION =  to say no, to walk away if my kids try to turn a no to a yes, (which they are good at) to stick to the word no, to not give in...  because when i do financially mostly i don't have the money and i am hurting because of it. and if one child which i am dealing with now decides to not talk to me because of it... to hold strong and let them come to me when they are ready and can accept the word no... .not me go to them. because the no will turn to a yes... (This is harder then dealing with my husband.)  . :'(

Title: Re: Examples of defending boundaries
Post by: DeityorDevil on February 10, 2012, 10:14:55 PM
Value:   Sleep is an important part of my own self-care.

Boundary:   I cannot stay up until all hours discussing minutiae.

Action:   I will head home/go to bed/end a conversation when I need to rest.

Title: Re: Examples of defending boundaries
Post by: momtario on February 11, 2012, 06:49:28 AM
Value: I want my children to learn to treat people with respect.

Boundary: I will not have my children in a situation where they are being controlled by screaming or violence.

Action: I will temporarily remove myself and my children from any situation that is verbally or physically violent.

Title: Re: Examples of defending boundaries
Post by: an0ught on February 11, 2012, 08:06:29 AM
Value: My energy and reputation.

Boundary: I won't waste my energy on endeavors that are bound to waste it or on activities that will damage my reputation.

Action: If faced with an established incorrigible behavior cut my losses early and disengage in a controlled manner.

Title: Re: Examples of defending boundaries
Post by: LoveNotWar on February 11, 2012, 01:59:35 PM
OK, let me try this... .feedback is appreciated xoxo. This is a work boundary, my boss doesn't like to go home so often holds me captive until 8:00 at night by telling me we need to work together then totally wasting my time sitting in her office while she takes personal calls, reads me her email or trashes our staff. I get in at 7:00 am and often work through lunch so this is just crazy making for me and I get so mad at myself for tolerating this. In addition the long hours don't help my BPDh feel valued ( not that I can EVER fill that hole) lol.

Value:I value a balance between my work life and personal life.

Boundary: Unless we are working on a project that is coming up against a deadline I am leaving work no later than 5:30.

Action: I will set the alarm on my Blackberry for 5:15 as a reminder to wrap up and pack up so I can be out the door by 5:30.

Is this it? And now can I do it?

I feel liberated just putting this in writing :)

Title: Re: BOUNDARIES: Examples of boundaries
Post by: ennie on June 06, 2012, 05:55:49 PM
VALUE: I value peace in my home and respectful communication.

Boundary: It is not peaceful for me to hear yelling and rage.  Respectful communication is not happening when one party is yelling or making disparaging remarks, even if I am not .

ACTION: I will not pick up the phone or listen to messages when my husband's ex wife is calling in a rage.  I will ask my husband if he would ask that she call his phone with messages and not our home phone, and let him know I will be deleting calls from her rather than listening to messages. 

Title: Re: BOUNDARIES: Examples of boundaries
Post by: ennie on June 06, 2012, 06:02:19 PM
VALUE: I value non-coercive interaction and equality between my partner and I.

Boundary:  When my husband experiences his ex's rage on the phone, in person, or sometimes even in texts, his behavior is highly defensive and less active, he initiates less in our family, and he is easily upset when the kids or I communicate our needs to him.  I find that my needs are then not heard by him, and the result is that we have a hard time negotiating in a way that places our needs on an equal par.  For example, I ask to have a plan for when I will have the kids tomorrow, and he is upset and thus fails to provide a plan, instead either cancelling my having the kids, or by waiting until the last minute to communicate with me.  This one is complicated, but the boundary is that when my husband is engaged in highly coercive interractions with his ex, he does not easily engage in non-coercive negotiation with me. 

Action:  I find somewhere else to be when DH has had one of these interactions. 

Action: I wait to negotiate until he has had other restorative influences. 

Action: I ask that he go somewhere else when he is like this.