Chapter Three

Chapter by chapter discussion of the book Boundaries.
Forum rules
To post to this section you must add the necessary user-group. See viewtopic.php?f=34&t=41250 for information.
User avatar
Seekryt
On the floor
Posts: 1695
Joined: Fri Jan 06, 2006 8:29 pm
Date of your marriage (past or future): July 4th, 1999
Gender: Female
Location: Alberta, Canada

Chapter Three

Postby Seekryt » Wed Jan 20, 2010 7:08 am

So we can move along...
Always know where your towel is.

User avatar
Leah
Under the stars
Posts: 16013
Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2006 6:42 pm
Date of your marriage (past or future): November 3rd, 1979
Gender: Female
Location: The Volunteer State

Re: Chapter Three

Postby Leah » Wed Jan 20, 2010 8:38 am

Chapter 3 is about Boundary Problems.

I believe either in the Introduction or Chapter 1, Cloud and Townsend talk about boundaries as a fence that defines self. It has a gate to let in the good and let out the bad. In Chapter 3, they classify the kinds of people who do not have healthy boundaries. I am an Avoidant Compliant married to a Nonresponsive Manipulative Controller. Talk about a match made in the pit.

Over the past three years in general and the past six months in particular, I have had to think in terms of my "gate" being like doors at the grocery store. There are two doors that automatically open when the sensor is triggered. One is "Enter" and the other is "Exit." The problem has been that I had the signs mixed up. I was letting bad enter and good exit. I have changed "Enter" and "Exit" signs on my doors so that good may enter and bad may exit. It was a hard switch, but there you go. The sensors go off, and I open the appropriate door.

I don't think I would have learned this lesson without having good friends who said, "Leah, you need to let someone do this for you." "Leah, you need to accept the good." "Leah, why do you not let out the bad?" A lot of the bad was stuff I hung on to because I never had the good. Finally a very good friend related a mentoring experience in which the mentor explained we can't hang on to what we never had. I'm really grateful that my dear friend had the courage to say that to me.
Leah

“I have learned now that while those who speak about one's miseries usually hurt, those who keep silence hurt more.”--C.S. Lewis


TMB Copyright and Fair Use

User avatar
Seekryt
On the floor
Posts: 1695
Joined: Fri Jan 06, 2006 8:29 pm
Date of your marriage (past or future): July 4th, 1999
Gender: Female
Location: Alberta, Canada

Re: Chapter Three

Postby Seekryt » Wed Jan 20, 2010 10:40 am

I've read this chapter three times now. Partly so I could really absorb it, and partly because my kids seem to suck some of the info out of my brain :)

On first read-through, I found myself identifying myself as blah blah blah, DH as blah blah blah, every other person I know as xyz...

I will admit, I felt comforted by a classification system. I wanted to slot people (and myself) into their little cubbyholes and deal with them as Avoidants, Compliants, etc - instead of as people.

Um, whoops :)

Yesterday's re-read through really brought home to me how I've fit into each category as different times in my life. For instance, when DH was deep in his addiction, I was a controller - both manipulative and aggressive. Obviously unhealthy, and an inappropriate response, but one I segued into over time. That was the only way to motivate his nonresponsive butt into doing anything - or so I thought.

At this point, I'm pretty much a complaint avoider with some aggressive controller still thrown in for good measure. Much less of the controller part now, but I gotta be honest - sometimes DH will say something, and my brain explodes and I railroad him. This is part of the ritualised pattern that we're trying so hard to get rid of. It's easier now that I've done recovery work. Yesterday, for instance, he shared that he had completed session 9 of 10 with his counsellor. I was ready to jump all over him and insist that he go in for 10 more sessions, but instead I listened to his explanation of why he thought he could be done now and respected his ability to make that decision for himself. I no longer have to micromanage him to feel that I'm being heard, but I still need to be able to express my concerns to him and be confident that I'll be heard. Hence, the compliance and avoidance have gotta go, too.
Always know where your towel is.

User avatar
Seekryt
On the floor
Posts: 1695
Joined: Fri Jan 06, 2006 8:29 pm
Date of your marriage (past or future): July 4th, 1999
Gender: Female
Location: Alberta, Canada

Re: Chapter Three

Postby Seekryt » Wed Jan 20, 2010 10:44 am

Leah in Mid-South wrote:
I don't think I would have learned this lesson without having good friends who said, "Leah, you need to let someone do this for you." "Leah, you need to accept the good." "Leah, why do you not let out the bad?" A lot of the bad was stuff I hung on to because I never had the good. Finally a very good friend related a mentoring experience in which the mentor explained we can't hang on to what we never had. I'm really grateful that my dear friend had the courage to say that to me.


I really realate to this. I know that some of it stems from FOO issues, but being married to a (see me categorize) compliant avoidant nonresponsive controller taught me fairly quickly that my problems or thoughts were not important and were in fact irrelevant. This led to quite a lot of drama, as I would engage in grandiose gestures and provoke arguments in an fairly fruitless effort to be HEARD.
Always know where your towel is.

User avatar
Leah
Under the stars
Posts: 16013
Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2006 6:42 pm
Date of your marriage (past or future): November 3rd, 1979
Gender: Female
Location: The Volunteer State

Re: Chapter Three

Postby Leah » Thu Feb 11, 2010 7:31 pm

In my boundary development the one thing I continue to have a problem with is the nonresponsives in my life. It is very hard to be married to someone who does not feel any responsibility to love or listen. I am learning to use word boundaries to overcome the listening issues. I simply refuse to repeat myself. "I'm sorry you didn't hear me the first time." "Did you not hear what I just said?"

The rest of it is still a problem, but I am learning how to have my needs met in healthy ways so I can continue to grow.
Leah

“I have learned now that while those who speak about one's miseries usually hurt, those who keep silence hurt more.”--C.S. Lewis


TMB Copyright and Fair Use

User avatar
Seekryt
On the floor
Posts: 1695
Joined: Fri Jan 06, 2006 8:29 pm
Date of your marriage (past or future): July 4th, 1999
Gender: Female
Location: Alberta, Canada

Re: Chapter Three

Postby Seekryt » Thu Feb 11, 2010 8:58 pm

I confess - one of my stickiest and wildest trigger points is feeling unheard. It gets uder my skin like nothing else does. I so often feel invisible. I hate it.
Always know where your towel is.

User avatar
Leah
Under the stars
Posts: 16013
Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2006 6:42 pm
Date of your marriage (past or future): November 3rd, 1979
Gender: Female
Location: The Volunteer State

Re: Chapter Three

Postby Leah » Thu Feb 11, 2010 9:09 pm

Besides the word boundaries, I have begun to make sure that I have learned to identify nonresponsives in my life. I make sure I have their full attention before I say anything. Even if I have the use the dreaded, "I need to talk to you about something later," then I will. I make sure I have a lot of space before I say anything. That "later" thing will really do that.

I also use facial expressions and body language to communicate. Or not, as I deem necessary. I know that sounds haughty, but I'm the one working the boundaries. I have rather nondescript features. I have to level the playing field as much as I can in other ways because my presence doesn't exactly command attention. This works to my advantage if the general climate in a crowd is not safe, but when I need to communicate a message and be heard in it, I become more assertive in the way I stand, use my hands, and show facial expression.
Leah

“I have learned now that while those who speak about one's miseries usually hurt, those who keep silence hurt more.”--C.S. Lewis


TMB Copyright and Fair Use

blushingwife
Under the stars
Posts: 3925
Joined: Wed Jul 25, 2007 6:59 am
Date of your marriage (past or future): June 14th, 1997
Gender: Female

Re: Chapter Three

Postby blushingwife » Wed Feb 24, 2010 3:14 am

Seekryt wrote:I confess - one of my stickiest and wildest trigger points is feeling unheard. It gets uder my skin like nothing else does. I so often feel invisible. I hate it.


Oh, me too!

I just finished this chapter but probably will read it again.

Can you be differnt things depending who you are relating to?

User avatar
Leah
Under the stars
Posts: 16013
Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2006 6:42 pm
Date of your marriage (past or future): November 3rd, 1979
Gender: Female
Location: The Volunteer State

Re: Chapter Three

Postby Leah » Wed Feb 24, 2010 12:24 pm

blushingwife wrote:
Seekryt wrote:I confess - one of my stickiest and wildest trigger points is feeling unheard. It gets uder my skin like nothing else does. I so often feel invisible. I hate it.


Oh, me too!

I just finished this chapter but probably will read it again.

Can you be differnt things depending who you are relating to?


You know, I'm not sure. Maybe we have a baseline and the different aspects of it are brought out as we fill our different roles?
Leah

“I have learned now that while those who speak about one's miseries usually hurt, those who keep silence hurt more.”--C.S. Lewis


TMB Copyright and Fair Use

User avatar
Seekryt
On the floor
Posts: 1695
Joined: Fri Jan 06, 2006 8:29 pm
Date of your marriage (past or future): July 4th, 1999
Gender: Female
Location: Alberta, Canada

Re: Chapter Three

Postby Seekryt » Wed Feb 24, 2010 12:53 pm

Leah in Mid-South wrote:
blushingwife wrote:
Seekryt wrote:I confess - one of my stickiest and wildest trigger points is feeling unheard. It gets uder my skin like nothing else does. I so often feel invisible. I hate it.


Oh, me too!

I just finished this chapter but probably will read it again.

Can you be differnt things depending who you are relating to?


You know, I'm not sure. Maybe we have a baseline and the different aspects of it are brought out as we fill our different roles?


Interesting - I just came across a situation where someone is nonresponsive and avoidant with one family member, and compliant with another. It's a difficult dynamic.

I sort of think that Leah's on the right track - to add to it, I was wondering if we're, say, a compliant in certain situations, we tend to push back in others and beome nonresponsive or avoidant. You know - the powerlessness of constant compliance results in a harder line in other relationships.
Always know where your towel is.

User avatar
Ballad
Blanket on a secluded beach!
Posts: 1974
Joined: Thu Sep 03, 2009 6:32 am
Date of your marriage (past or future): June 4th, 2000
Gender: Male
Location: Chasing a rainbow

Re: Chapter Three

Postby Ballad » Sat Jul 17, 2010 10:59 am

Seekryt wrote:I sort of think that Leah's on the right track - to add to it, I was wondering if we're, say, a compliant in certain situations, we tend to push back in others and beome nonresponsive or avoidant. You know - the powerlessness of constant compliance results in a harder line in other relationships.


I think it is kind of human nature to do some of this.

Like as children, compliant eldest siblings may become extremely bossy with their brothers and sisters when the parents aren't nearby... perhaps because they've seen that that is how it works. Carries into adulthood, too.

Or how about the parable of the unmerciful servant? (One that gives me pause frequently.) It's almost as if, when his debt was temporarily forgiven, he was partially released from his paralyzing fear and wanted to prove that he could cause someone else to fear instead. Not sure what sort of a pigeonhole-hop that is. Maybe, from manipulative controller (how did he rack up a debt like that anyway?) to nonresponsive avoidant (he not only failed the love and compassion test, but he missed the impact of his master's forgiveness and lost out on experiencing that peace for himself)?

Leah's baseline notion does ring true when the circumstances are fairly close to "average."
And what is the future, happy one?
'A sea beneath a cloudless sun;
A mighty, glorious, dazzling sea
Stretching into infinity.’

--Emily Brontë

User avatar
Leah
Under the stars
Posts: 16013
Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2006 6:42 pm
Date of your marriage (past or future): November 3rd, 1979
Gender: Female
Location: The Volunteer State

Re: Chapter Three

Postby Leah » Thu Mar 21, 2013 6:21 am

I like to watch people's facial expressions and listen to their voices. Jake's birthday was this week and we met three of his four siblings for lunch. As soon as they got together, their voices got higher pitched and they went from 0-60 and talked faster and faster as the meal went on. I couldn't wait to get away from there.

I did keep boundaries in place, though. I almost made a game of it. When someone finally realized I was there and asked me a direct question, I would look up, say, "Hmmmm," and let there be total silence for three seconds before asking. I could sense how uncomfortable it made the others. It's like they are trying to avoid talking about anything important.
Leah

“I have learned now that while those who speak about one's miseries usually hurt, those who keep silence hurt more.”--C.S. Lewis


TMB Copyright and Fair Use

User avatar
TilWeHaveFaces
Under the stars
Posts: 2858
Joined: Mon May 09, 2011 2:26 pm
Date of your marriage (past or future): May 8th, 1999
Gender: Male
Location: St. Anne's-on-the-hill, standing outside the garden gate.

Re: Chapter Three

Postby TilWeHaveFaces » Thu Mar 21, 2013 6:27 am

Leah wrote:I like to watch people's facial expressions and listen to their voices. Jake's birthday was this week and we met three of his four siblings for lunch. As soon as they got together, their voices got higher pitched and they went from 0-60 and talked faster and faster as the meal went on. I couldn't wait to get away from there.

I did keep boundaries in place, though. I almost made a game of it. When someone finally realized I was there and asked me a direct question, I would look up, say, "Hmmmm," and let there be total silence for three seconds before asking. I could sense how uncomfortable it made the others. It's like they are trying to avoid talking about anything important.


I wish I could have been a fly on the wall for that. :shock:

Thanks for bumping the chapter discussions. I need to re-open the book on the Kindle app in order to remember what's what.


Return to “Boundaries - the book”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users