Set Boundaries Without Pushing Your Partner Out the Door

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Set Boundaries Without Pushing Your Partner Out the Door
3 boundary-setting relationship rules to live by

Get to the point when setting a boundary. Do share your feelings, but focus in on the actual change you want your partner to make. It can be confusing to both of you if you get side-tracked and talk mostly about secondary or unrelated concerns.

Identify specifically what you want your partner to stop or start doing.

“I want you to call when you’re going to be late.”

“I expect you to let me know when your ex texts you.”
“I love you and I need to know now if you’ll commit to being monogamous.”
“I’m unwilling to stay in this relationship if you continue to get drunk and yell at m
e.”

Notice that a boundary can include a request or it can be a statement of what you will do if a particular thing happens again (or doesn’t).

#3: Be consistent.

Don’t set a boundary but then dismiss or ignore it. When you do, you undermine yourself and you teach your partner to NOT listen to what you say.

Stand behind your words-- especially your boundaries. This means that you don’t say you’ll end the relationship if _____ happens, unless you’re willing to actually do that.

Remember, this isn’t about punishing your partner, it’s about choosing to no longer tolerate certain words or behaviors in your relationship and then following through with what you’ve said.

You can’t force your partner to change and you can’t make him or her respect your boundaries, but you can make decisions that are in your best interests. If it’s come to the point where you feel like you need to set a boundary, keep reminding yourself of what your priorities are and how flexible you are willing (or unwilling) to be.

It’s okay to re-consider your boundary if you find out more information or your partner proposes an alternative that feels good to you. Stay open to what he or she has to say while remaining true to what you want and need.
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When setting boundaries, it comes down to HOW you say what you have to say. Find out which words to use (and which to avoid) when communicating with your partner. Visit www.magicrelationshipwords.com to discover words and phrases that unlock the door to honesty and connection.

Article contributed by
Advanced Member

Susie & Otto Collins

Author

Susie and Otto Collins are relationship coaches and authors who help couples communicate, connect and create the passionate relationships they desire.



 

Location: Columbus, OH
Credentials: BS, CCC
Specialties: Communication Problems, Couples/Marital Issues
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