Relationship Boundaries – Are You Screwing This Up Too?

Everyone has and needs their own personal space via relationship boundaries, everyone.

This was a big and recent lesson for me so I’m passing on how I screwed up and came back from the brink so you don’t have to go through the same painful experience.


The Boundaries Back-Story

Even though you’ve got many trusting relationships with family, friends and loved ones, taking boundaries for granted is paved with eventual heartache.

I should know because, in hindsight, I’ve always been unknowingly overstepping the mark.

You see, this just wasn’t something I knew about. I know now how vitally important it is though.

When I was growing up, my parents never ever mentioned anything about people’s boundaries or giving thought to ‘social niceties’ such as not making myself at home with someone new.

Can you see how this is going to shape up when I meet a new person and make myself at home?


Mistake 1

Not Even Knowing That Everyone Has Relationship Boundaries

learn what personal boundaries are

Learn what personal boundaries are

Everyone has possessions that they class as theirs. An iPad, computer, clothes, the humble refrigerator or even something simple as a notebook.

Here’s two examples:

1. Much the same as educating your kids in respecting the boundaries of their friend’s parent’s homes.

Respect they can’t overstay their welcome so it never gets to the point of the parents needing to (uncomfortably) ask them when they’re leaving.

Or thinking they can simply ask to be fed or raid the fridge for snacks – that’s showing a lack of respect for another’s family unit boundaries.

2. My wife has a laptop, as I do. It’s a Macbook Pro and obviously computers require updating, from time to time. I failed to properly understand that I simply can’t charge in an install updates whenever I feel there’s a need.

Sure, she trusts me in doing the updates and computer maintenance but it’s her property and there’s a boundary.


Mistake 2

Forgetting To Ask Permission

First there’s actually knowing people have defined boundaries and then there’s the need to ask for permission to cross them.

In the example above with the laptop, I needed to understand it’s her laptop. It isn’t mine. I know updates are needed and she knows they are needed and happy for me to do them – PROVIDING I ask her for permission to do them, at a time that suits her and telling her what I’m going to do and why.

Remember To Ask and Show Respect

Never think you have any rights when it comes to another’s property, even when it’s a part of the same household.

For the most part, you’ll still be able to achieve the objective but ensuring everyone is being kept in the picture and why is the important part.


Mistake 3:

Are You Aware When You Cross The Line?

The third part comes into play when you’re doing the first two properly.

People won’t feel controlled or threatened so are more likely to let you know when you might have inadvertently crossed a line you didn’t know about.

People Can Tell You – That’s OK

Once you’ve recognised the boundaries and the permission asking, casually but firmly inform those that you’ve made the mistake with (in the past) that you’d like them to let you know if you screw up again and where.

Life is always a learning experience and you want to track through life with ease and the same for others.


Speak Your Mind, With Your Opinion

Glad you got to the end of another one of my own life lessons. Here’s what you can do next:

  • Have you ever crossed an unseen boundary?
  • What do you do if someone crosses one of yours?
  • Click one of the Share buttons – your friends can then enjoy this article too.

And thanks for reading too – Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

Relationship Boundaries - Are You Screwing This Up Too? 1

Enjoying newly found freedoms in South-East Asia, Martin is a down to earth, honest, quirky humor, compassionate and upfront kinda guy. Easy going and love to laugh. Into good food, wine and great company. I’ll talk and try to help anyone.
Drop me a message and let’s start there, OK?

Martin Cooney – who has written posts on GeekandJock.