It’s as I talked about a few weeks back in my Broken Windows post – let certain things slide by and it becomes a green light for them to bust up your boundaries even further.
They realise that something isn’t right and that you may not like and love yourself enough otherwise you wouldn’t be giving them the time of day let alone the steam off your tea.
You’ve got to stop carrying on like one of those bonkers ministers that lays their hands on a member of the congregation in a wheelchair, starts talking in mumbo jumbo, shouting and throwing themselves on the floor, only for the person to stand up and say “HAVE MERCY! ” That’s what all this talking to the nth degree, Powerpoint presentations, manuals, trying a different tack, taking them back and assuming they’ve changed and basically being ever accommodating and trying to take the path of least resistance with your ‘type’ that represents your unhealthy beliefs is: You expect them to fall at your feet (eventually) and wail “I CAN LOVE! People only explain and keep on explaining or even justifying boundaries that they don’t believe in.
It is time to start believing in what you already know – relationship insanity and the fact that certain types of behaviours and relationships don’t work for anyone.
Maybe just cut anything that starts with "When you have kids..." out of your repertoire all together. Unless you and your friend have some previous communication on this topic about how your little one is always welcome, assume the party is not kid friendly. If it were "kid friendly" they would have invited you AND your kids, and mentioned the awesome play room that they will have set up in the basement.
By asking your non-kid having friends if their party is kid friendly you are putting them in the really awkward position of either MAKING their party kid friendly on the fly, or telling you that the party is NOT kid friendly which, then, no matter how low-key the party was intended to be in the first place, pretty much requires that they now provide a steady supply of hookers and blow.
Pointless – it’s like throwing your energy into the abyss or peeing into the wind.
Particularly for women, who often suffer with Women Who Talk and Think Too Much syndrome, you’ve got to stop the explaining, justifying and talking the nth degree out of your boundaries because if they’re really your boundaries, you wouldn’t be there or you’d be doing something.
They also communicate to others not only how they can treat you and what to expect from you, but also what they’re likely to get away with.
Sure, you two were best buds in college, but now you have very different lives. Tired, stressed, in pain, covered in urine, it doesn't matter. Too often, we parents downplay non-parent's concerns by pulling ours out and tossing them on the table. If, on a scale of 1 to Passing Out Awkwardly in the Shower and Waking Up When the Hot Water Runs Out, your friend is at a 7, and three weeks into your first newborn you were at a 9, that DOESN'T MAKE YOUR FRIEND ANY LESS TIRED.
So when "so and so" offhandedly, and perhaps awkwardly, tries to relate to your story about picking poo out of your bangs by comparing it to scraping dog shit out of the carpet, cut her some slack. It isn't that your experiences can't be a valid contribution to the conversation, but instead of a my pain is more painful than your pain approach, instead try sympathizing. When I was tired after my daughter was born, I found that pouring coffee directly into my eyeballs was incredibly useful."Not be grossed out by boogers, know who Dora the Explorer is, be happy… We've got to quit assuming that everyone is going to have kids.
And by less of a fly, I mean that I will not land on you, vomit on you, and then try to eat you.
Over the past few years, I’ve gone to great lengths to explain the importance of boundaries, something that all people who have low self-esteem and who put up with inappropriate or downright shady behaviour have little or none of.