Where Are Your Boundaries?

THIS POST ORIGINALLY APPEARED ON THIS BLOG IN OCTOBER 2014. DUE TO A SERVER FAILURE, IT WAS LOST. IT IS REPOSTED HERE.

Expand relationships by asking questions about how you get along with others

Note: If you are new to this feature of the Support4Change Blog, here are some suggestions for exploring questions for yourself and also for your family and friends.


The other day I was eating dinner with a new resident in our retirement home when she asked some very personal questions about the health of one of the people at our table. This felt a bit intrusive, although the person did answer her question.

Nevertheless, I realized that at one time I would have been that person. Until I explored the need for boundaries, I would ask questions that would be better left unasked; and I would share personal information that I should have kept to myself.

So this week I am reminded of the difficulty we can have in drawing a line between what should be kept private and what is fair game for sharing. We all have different approaches to the subject.

Some people are like eggs fried on a griddle or cookies baked too close to one another, drawing no distinction between where they end and another person begins.

Some people maintain their distance like farm houses separated by wide fields and fences, clearly delineating what they will or will not share.

Then there are those who discourage anyone from sharing any personal information by not responding to what is said and they will not share anything about themselves unless absolutely necessary. It is almost as though they want to live on another galaxy so they don’t have to relate to others.

Explore How You Handle the Boundaries Between You and Others
by Asking Yourself These Questions:
 

  1. What are the boundaries I try to keep between myself and others? Am I consistent?
  2. Do I sometimes go over the boundary because I want to feel closer to someone, even though I know I am sharing something I shouldn’t?
  3. How do I stop myself when I am about to share something that should be kept to myself?
  4. When someone has shared something I feel is too personal and that I should not know about it, or if someone asks me a question that invades my privacy, what do I do or say?

What have you learned about yourself in exploring these questions?
What have you learned about your friends if they have explored

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