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Respecting Boundaries

Updated: Mar 1

by: Dr. Carolina Pataky

If we look around us, we are surrounded by boundaries and our lives are centered on them. They are mainly there to remind us that our right to interfere here stops. A healthy relationship is all about acknowledging and respecting the boundaries between you and your partner. It is a like a property line between you and your partner stretching indefinitely. It basically, defines where you and your partner should start and stop. These are natural and crucial for a long term relationship.

In a relationship, you are responsible for your words, body actions, emotions, attitude and preferences and a boundary line between you and your partner will make sure that your never have to compromise on any of these. Your relationship should be open to suggestions or even criticism. If do not like being touched, you should be able to convey that to your partner in an open and understanding way. You should be able to apologize when you utter some unkind words. You should be able to communicate in a better way rather than sitting quite and escalating the situation. If your relationship has healthy boundaries, it eliminates the tendency of blaming and jealousy. 

We often blame in order transfer the ownership of the problem. You should always be willing to take responsibility of your part in the misunderstanding or conflict and your partner should take theirs so that the resolution of the problem becomes easier. Admitting your parts honestly and respecting each other’s limits is the key to a long lasting companionship. 

Setting clear boundary line in your relationship will help determine responsibilities of you and your partner in a clear way. And when the lines of responsibility are defined and respected, strong emotional bonding takes place. Overstepping of your personal space by your partner is often accidental but destructive. This causes unheard disturbance, much is left unsaid, and emotions are suppressed. This causes the emotional barrier between you and your partner to widen leading to long lasting consequences. Such issues are caused where there is much unsaid and unheard, when “yes” is said instead if “no” to avoid a conflict, when “no” is said instead of “yes” for the sake of punishment and anger. In either way, honesty is the best solution to all these conflicts. 

One should never try to control their partner’s thoughts and actions instead they should be allowed to grow emotionally and mentally with us. Even in our daily life, we should always try to develop healthy boundaries with everyone around us. This kind of behavior also helps individually or in a family. We never know what the other person is going through so we should always know our line in someone else’s matter. We often pass judgments and thoughts on others even without knowing their situation. This kind of behavior leads to a conflict in our family or our personal life. Often we are influenced by our social circle to do certain things which we can say no to but due to pressure we often agree to them. This leads to mishap and have consequences.

 We should always know when to say “no” precisely. Thoughts and feelings should be always communicated with honesty and clarity. They should also be understood with clarity instead with an intention of suppression. Never try to change the other person. One should always try to understand the situation of the other and ask them about their feelings instead of guessing. If feelings are well understood and never take granted for, every relationship can go a long way.

Feelings should be put into words in order to be understood. One should always be able to take responsibility of one’s actions instead of blaming because it is a healthy process of growing. Questioning oneself about the choices is the best way to come up with a solution to the problem. Always express your feelings in a positive and healthy way. It takes much practice to develop these boundaries if one comes from a place where boundaries are not respected and barely recognized. But with practice and support, you and your partner will be able to identify the placement of boundary line in your relationship. This will develop a strong and more long lasting bond between the two. 

You should always support your partner and consider your relationship as an experience for both in which you both live and grow together. You should create comfort and ease for your partner through providing them with personal space they require. 

Co-founder of the Love Discovery Institute, Dr. Carolina Pataky is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, Clinical Sexologist and Certified Sex Therapist. Recognized as one of South Florida’s leading authorities on intimacy, relationships and self-discovery. Her focus is to give individuals and couples of any sexual preference the tools to learn how to love themselves unconditionally, receive love, and create fulfilling and joyful relationships that will last a lifetime. Through private sessions, couples’ intensives and luxury retreats, she provides individual and couples coaching sessions, sex therapy, and psychotherapy practices that support clients through the journey of finding the right path to healthy love. Visit her website or follow @carolinapataky


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