I have written quite extensively about relationships in partnerships and marriage and so I felt I simply can’t ignore one of the most significant factors that can engender a healthy, long-lasting relationship – and that is setting boundaries.
Wikipedia defines personal boundaries as, “The practice of openly communicating and asserting personal values as a way to preserve and protect against having them compromised or violated.” One observer explains it a bit more simply as ‘’relationship boundaries control how partners are treated in the relationship and ensure that their mental health is protected.’’
Why do we need to have boundaries?
A few good reasons for setting up boundaries are: you prioritise yourselves and learn to say no to what doesn’t work for you without guilt feelings; they enable you to maintain a balance of respect for each other’s personal lives; you feel that your relationship is a safe space to open up and be yourself – and you each maintain higher self-esteem knowing that you are as important as each other.
Unfortunately for many couples the setting up and respecting of boundaries is difficult as they were simply not set or practised within their own home environment. It is hard to understand a partner who needs boundaries if you are not someone who feels that you do and so you may remain closed to the idea. Ironically, therefore, sometimes creating boundaries can be about opening up!
Being too nice
One needs to be careful about thinking that respect and boundaries come from giving your partner their own way entirely though. There needs to be a balance. An example of this is that certain people tend to just be too nice, always considering the other to the point of losing their own identity.
This is a dangerous path and often leads to addiction and unfaithfulness if the partner takes advantage of it. Remember that giving somebody ‘’their space’ does not mean being so nice that you begin to lose self-esteem and compromise your own boundaries. When love and kindness are shown, a breakdown comes if these are not gracefully received!
Give and take gracefully
As with solving most issues in relationships the path of ‘give and take’ is usually the best one to follow, but a part of establishing boundaries correctly is giving for the right reasons and having the ability to receive gracefully.
As a facilitator of a few practices that deal with human relationships I have found even some of the most hardened hearts find it difficult to receive gracefully and gratefully if their partner gives from a place of love and without expecting anything in return, but it often still requires the ‘opening up’ of the couple to create a relationship that intertwines boundaries and intimacy.
The Opener (Release) Card
In Life Alignment (See the previous article) we work with ‘’the understanding that some family characteristics and beliefs are likely to be passed on from one generation to the next and beyond. The reasons may be due to genetics, similar ways of living, parenting styles, coping strategies, etc.’’
We use vortex cards to achieve much of this and the ‘Opener card’ when used on the body, helps to transform the potential negative belief systems that come from family and ancestral patterns. When used externally (hung or placed in a prominent position) it assists with the clearing process of old family patterns of the occupants.
Don’t hesitate to talk to me if you feel your relationship may be affected by a lack of boundaries or if they are being abused by simply not understanding that sometimes creating boundaries can be about opening up!