There are two main misconceptions about boundaries. The first is that a boundary is a punishment. Now that you’ve gone and done this terrible, awful thing to me, my only option is to punish you for your actions by enforcing a boundary. The second is that a boundary is something I force you to do. “You will not speak to me in that tone of voice”, or “You will not continue to disrespect the family in this way.”
Read the Healing Heart
As children, we adapt strategies that allow us to survive the environments we live in. Often, these strategies are life-serving and we carry them into adulthood where they help us create the lives we long for. Other times, they are detrimental to ourselves and our relationships. On the podcast this week we talk about one such adaptive strategy: co-dependency, especially as it related to parenting.
While it’s sometimes easy to wallow in places that sound like “I’ll never be the person I want to be” or it’s opposite: “I am good the way I am and they should change”, freedom lies somewhere in the field between the polarities of self-acceptance and self-improvement.
Marshall would say that when we listen nonviolently, there is no such thing as a verbal attack. Instead, we’re so resourced that we’re able to see through the tragic strategy of blame and shame and identify their underlying feelings and needs.
Of course we work hard to love all humans as they are. However, that doesn’t mean I invite all humans into the closest corners of my life.