Archive for January 4th, 2016

January 4, 2016

Setting Boundaries

families and how to survive them

Setting boundaries is a life skill that has been popularized by self help authors and support groups since the mid 1980s. It is the practice of openly communicating and asserting personal values as way to preserve and protect against having them compromised or violated. The term ‘boundary’ is a metaphor – with ‘in-bounds’ meaning acceptable and ‘out-of-bounds’ meaning unacceptable. Without values and boundaries our identities become diffused and often controlled by the definitions offered by others. The concept of boundaries has been widely adopted by the counseling profession.

Healthy relationships are ‘inter-dependent’ connections between two ‘independent’ people. Healthy individuals should establish values that they honor and defend regardless of the nature of a relationship (core or independent values). Healthy individuals should also have values that they negotiate and adapt in an effort to bond with and collaborate with others (inter-dependent values).

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