Inclusive boundaries – Exclusive boundaries

By Dr. Keith Witt
August 19, 2013
Inclusive boundaries — behaviors, attitudes, adjustments, principles, or understandings that I need to be in joyful relationship with you. Honesty, willingness to listen, compassion for my relatives all might be examples. Exclusive boundaries — behaviors, attitudes, etc that I need to not have to be in relationship with you. Don’t cheat, engage in physical violence, put me down, or public humiliation all might be examples. Boundaries need to be possible and consistent with healthy principles. If my standard is for me to never feel put down by you, it’s an impossible standard. If my principle is to never be angry, it’s an unhealthy principle. In general unhealthy boundaries involve some form of maintaining unhealthy behavior–codependence–rather than supporting healthy behavior. You can read more about boundaries in my book The Attuned Family, and there is a lot of related material in blogs, lectures, videos, and the Therapist in the Wild webseries.

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