Relationship Boundaries, Part 2
Do you have a pattern of dysfunctional and toxic relationships? Don’t despair. If you’re codependent and not personality disordered (e.g., narcissistic, borderline, histrionic, sociopathic or psychopathic) you can break this pattern. It probably won’t be as easy or fast as you’d like, but it can be done. Change, even when it’s desired, is often painful and difficult. That’s why it’s called growing pains.
Basic Relationship Boundaries, Part 1 discusses the importance of reciprocal relationships, personal boundaries and not enabling other people’s abusive behavior. Before you can have a healthy relationship, it’s helpful to understand how and why you’ve gotten yourself into trouble in past and present relationships.
Most people who have unhealthy relationship patterns can trace it back to their childhoods. If your parents didn’t teach you to take care of yourself and have healthy boundaries, which is true of many codependents, then you need to begin with the basics. Again, don’t beat up on yourself. How are you supposed to know how to do something if no one ever taught you? Or, worse yet, taught you to ignore your own needs and well-being in order to take care of them instead? How are you supposed to know what a functional relationship is when your parents modeled toxic and dysfunctional relationships?
If you were expected to take care of your mother’s and father’s emotional and physical needs as a child it was a role reversal. It’s called parentification and is a form of child abuse. Adults are supposed to take care of their kids, not the other way round. If you’re codependent, you basically have to learn how to care for and love yourself as an adult in the ways your parents did not and could not when you were a child. READ MORE.
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Counseling, Consulting and Coaching with Dr. Tara J. Palmatier, PsyD
Dr. Tara J. Palmatier, PsyD provides services to help individuals work through their relationship issues via telephone or Skype, particularly men and women who trying to break free of an abusive relationship, cope with the stress of an abusive relationship or heal from an abusive relationship. She combines practical advice, support, reality testing and goal-oriented outcomes. Please visit the Schedule a Session page for professional inquiries.