Boundaries are not meant to make you feel trapped; they are created to maintain respect and understand expectations in the relationship. If something makes you feel uncomfortable, bring it up and discuss how things need to change and how each of you will make changes. If one person wants to spend lots of time together and the other does not, it’s important to set a boundary of how much time is appropriate together and apart.
- For example, you may want to create sexual boundaries (being sexually exclusive) and social boundaries (having one night a week designated for friends or activities).
- Don’t let your partner control you and don’t set out to control your partner. Setting boundaries means respecting each other and finding compromises to make the relationship work well.
- Communicate clearly
- Without clear communication, a relationship can quickly bring out the worst in people. When you have a want or a need, express it to your partner clearly. Don’t beat around the bush or say something you think will please your partner when it makes you unhappy. Try using “I statements” to express your feelings, make an observation, or share your opinion. I statements allow you to express yourself clearly and directly and take responsibility for your own thoughts and feelings while avoiding blame and accusations toward others.
- To properly communicate, say, “ I think/feel/want…. when….. because….” For example, “I feel upset when you leave the door open because the room gets cold and drafty.”