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User Topic: How do you set boundaries?
Lonelygirl10
♀ Member
Member # 39850
Default  Posted: 1:08 PM, July 24th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I have realized that I am horrible when it comes to boundaries, and I'm looking for some people's thoughts on how YOU set boundaries in your M, both before and after A. I just need some guidance, and I'm trying to understand how it all works.

First, about me... I'm horrible with boundaries. Before A, I struggled with wanting to set my own boundaries versus not wanting to seem controlling. The things that usually come up for me is what is and is not okay with opposite sex friends, exes, and strip clubs. Those are the things that I don't like. I'm not sure how to enforce my boundaries though, or how to communicate them, without appearing controlling.

Same problem after the A. As an example, he has a friend who takes people to strip clubs and massage parlors, and this friend encouraged the A. I don't want him to see this person, but I also don't want to just say you can't see this person.

I was discussing it with my IC, and she said that I can't tell him not to do something because that's treating him like a child. She didn't really say how I'm supposed to handle things that make me uncomfortable though. She said that her husband had a friend that always bothered her, and she just dealt with it. Is that how it's supposed to work--you just deal with it?

So I guess I'm asking for how you handle things that bother you, and how you put up your boundaries. If something happens like an inappropriate coworker or friend, or your S wants to do something like a strip club that makes you uncomfortable, how do you handle it?


29 Bgf
Dday: April 2013
Relationship ended: January 2014

Posts: 1168 | Registered: Jul 2013
confused615
♀ Member
Member # 30826
Default  Posted: 1:11 PM, July 24th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

You need a different IC.

While on one hand she is right,,you can't treat him like a child and tell him what to do..what you can and should do is tell him what you and will not accept. If he wants to text women that you don't know or are uncomfortable with..and he insists on doing it any way..you can leave him. If he won't stop watching porn,and that is not ok with you in a relationship..you can leave. You can tell him what you won't tolerate..if he chooses to do it anyway..ok. Then you can decide if you are willing to stay with a man who knows what you are not ok with..and does it anyway.

[This message edited by confused615 at 1:13 PM, July 24th (Wednesday)]


BS(me)42
FWH 45
4 kids..21,20,11,10
M: June 2001
D-Day: 8/10/10
Status: Reconciling.

..that feeling you get in your stomach, when you heart's broken. It's like all the butterflies just died.


Posts: 7489 | Registered: Jan 2011 | From: Indiana
hill
Member
Member # 12166
Default  Posted: 1:15 PM, July 24th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Completely agree with confused615. Get a new counselor, yesterday.

You are not telling him what to do. You are telling him what you will and will not accept in a relationship; it is his decision whether these boundaries are acceptable to him. If so, he stays, if not, he goes.

You do NOT compromise what you need in a relationship in order to be a doormat. Yes, compromise is part of any relationship... but not when it involves basic boundary issues, especially when the SO has been wayward.


Posts: 3153 | Registered: Sep 2006
Rebreather
♀ Member
Member # 30817
Default  Posted: 1:15 PM, July 24th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

You say, "It is completely unacceptable to me if you do X, or Y, or Z. These are, however, your choices. If you participate in these activities, my choice will be to end the marriage."

You can smooth that up a little and be more detailed, but that is the basics.

You say what is acceptable behavior or not, in your life, and what your likely actions will be if that behavior occurs. It's his choice to respect your boundaries or not.


Me BS
Him WH
2 ddays in '07
Recovering.
"The cure for the pain, is the pain." -Rumi

Posts: 6491 | Registered: Jan 2011
Lonelygirl10
♀ Member
Member # 39850
Default  Posted: 1:18 PM, July 24th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

You can tell him what you won't tolerate..if he chooses to do it anyway..ok. Then you can decide if you are willing to stay with a man who knows what you are not ok with..and does it anyway.

I've done that in the past, and decided to end a relationship because I wasn't comfortable with the guy going to strip clubs once every 1-2 weeks. When I told him the reason, he said that he would stop going and apologized, and asked for a second chance. Four years later we broke up, and one of the reasons he listed was that I was too controlling about strip clubs.

Is there a way to deal with this at the beginning when you're setting the boundaries, so that you don't look controlling and there's no resentment?


29 Bgf
Dday: April 2013
Relationship ended: January 2014

Posts: 1168 | Registered: Jul 2013
Rebreather
♀ Member
Member # 30817
Default  Posted: 1:19 PM, July 24th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

You aren't being controlling, nor was the previous break up about you being controlling. That was blameshifting on his part. It was bullshit.


Me BS
Him WH
2 ddays in '07
Recovering.
"The cure for the pain, is the pain." -Rumi

Posts: 6491 | Registered: Jan 2011
Lonelygirl10
♀ Member
Member # 39850
Default  Posted: 1:24 PM, July 24th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Okay, thanks. I felt like I was arguing with my IC yesterday about this topic, and was just curious how everyone else handles these conversations.


29 Bgf
Dday: April 2013
Relationship ended: January 2014

Posts: 1168 | Registered: Jul 2013
heartache101
♀ Member
Member # 26465
Default  Posted: 1:26 PM, July 24th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Let me see.
Me- You will not be online ever again or there is the door. If I see you on a computer in the house there is the door you will be out! You understand.
Him - Yes

That is how I set boundaries...

What will you accept?? What will you not?? You have to learn to communicate to him what is acceptable or he will run amuck.

Ok like if you speed you know you will get a ticket. Therefore you don't speed.

Soo if he goes to strip clubs you can too right??
My spouse use to leave magazines laying around Hustler etc... I went and bought a few and he never did that again.. He didn't like the fact I was looking at naked men!

Find your boundaries tell him those boundaries..


There are degrees to which you let people back into your life and degrees to which you let them back into your heart-which, of course, are not the same thing

Posts: 3188 | Registered: Dec 2009 | From: Indiana
confused615
♀ Member
Member # 30826
Default  Posted: 1:27 PM, July 24th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I read your other comment about your IC in your other thread. I *strongly* recommend a new IC..not all are qualified to deal with infidelity.

I completely agree with rebreather(as always ). He was blameshifting.


BS(me)42
FWH 45
4 kids..21,20,11,10
M: June 2001
D-Day: 8/10/10
Status: Reconciling.

..that feeling you get in your stomach, when you heart's broken. It's like all the butterflies just died.


Posts: 7489 | Registered: Jan 2011 | From: Indiana
Tearsoflove
♀ Member
Member # 8271
Default  Posted: 2:16 PM, July 24th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Here's how I handled the boundary issue:

After my husband's second affair, I pointed out that he had issues with alcohol and crossing the lines of friendship when he'd been drinking. Since he has those issues, I informed him that I would no longer tolerate friendships with women or friendships with anyone who wasn't an advocate of our marriage. He said I was picking his friends.

I said "No, I'm giving you a choice. You can choose anyone you want as a friend. But I'm letting you know what I will tolerate in our marriage and I will not tolerate friendships with women anymore. You can choose to be friends with women if you want. But you can't choose them and also choose me. It's one or the other: friendships with women or our marriage. Your choice will dictate mine."

He chose the marriage.


"Just because I don't care doesn't mean I don't understand." ~Homer Simpson


Posts: 4102 | Registered: Sep 2005
Lonelygirl10
♀ Member
Member # 39850
Default  Posted: 2:29 PM, July 24th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I said "No, I'm giving you a choice. You can choose anyone you want as a friend. But I'm letting you know what I will tolerate in our marriage and I will not tolerate friendships with women anymore. You can choose to be friends with women if you want. But you can't choose them and also choose me. It's one or the other: friendships with women or our marriage. Your choice will dictate mine."

I've said pretty much that identical thing in the past, and I've been told that I'm controlling and that the guy doesn't work well with ultimatums. So then I tend to worry, and I back WAAAY off by saying okay you're right, and I just deal with it.

And then I also worry that if I say something like that, the guy will still do whatever it is and just not tell me. Like, for example, I told my current Wbf before A that I didn't want him being around OW outside the workplace because she was acting inappropriate. He agreed, and said what I asked was reasonable. And then saw her anyway, and it led to the A a year later.

I *strongly* recommend a new IC..not all are qualified to deal with infidelity.

How do you do this? It's the only IC I've ever had. I started seeing her 2 days after Dday, and I've gotten attached to her. She knows a lot about me that I've never told anyone else. How do I switch? I don't want to insult her, cause she's really been there for me.


29 Bgf
Dday: April 2013
Relationship ended: January 2014

Posts: 1168 | Registered: Jul 2013
confused615
♀ Member
Member # 30826
Default  Posted: 3:12 PM, July 24th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Just because the guy tells you that you're being controlling doesn't make it true. It just means he is looking for an excuse to not do what you need. If your WBF's top priority is to make you feel safe,and he is truly remorseful,he will do what you need him to do.

As for the IC..Im not sure you have to actually tell her anything..research IC's in your area and find one that is a good fit.

How are you doing today? Have you been taking care of yourself?


BS(me)42
FWH 45
4 kids..21,20,11,10
M: June 2001
D-Day: 8/10/10
Status: Reconciling.

..that feeling you get in your stomach, when you heart's broken. It's like all the butterflies just died.


Posts: 7489 | Registered: Jan 2011 | From: Indiana
Lonelygirl10
♀ Member
Member # 39850
Default  Posted: 3:14 PM, July 24th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

How are you doing today? Have you been taking care of yourself?

I'm doing much better today. I find that it comes and goes, and I have good days and bad days. Just been pondering some stuff I discussed with IC yesterday.


29 Bgf
Dday: April 2013
Relationship ended: January 2014

Posts: 1168 | Registered: Jul 2013
confused615
♀ Member
Member # 30826
Default  Posted: 3:15 PM, July 24th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Im glad you're having a "good" day.

Quick question..I just went over your last thread...I know you were tested for STD's...but was he? You say he's had a few "cold sores" since he admitted he cheated...has he been tested yet?


BS(me)42
FWH 45
4 kids..21,20,11,10
M: June 2001
D-Day: 8/10/10
Status: Reconciling.

..that feeling you get in your stomach, when you heart's broken. It's like all the butterflies just died.


Posts: 7489 | Registered: Jan 2011 | From: Indiana
tushnurse
♀ Member
Member # 21101
Default  Posted: 3:19 PM, July 24th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

LL I think perhaps your IC is a bit confused. You can forbid him all you want, but you can't stop him from doing anything.

Yes you can lay down boundaries absolutely. You lay them out with clear cut consequences, and be prepared to followup when he breaks those.

That friend of his for example. You simply say, "I don't want you talking to, hanging out with, or doing anything with Mr No Morals." It is horribly disrespectful to me, and encouraged you to make some really bad choices. If you choose to contact/hang out with or see Mr No Morals again I will leave.

There is nothing wrong with that. Your H needs some limits, and boundries. He had a flipping A. He has proven to be untrustworthy, and until he proves that he is again to you that's the deal.

Don't feel bad. In love and relationships we sometimes have to give up things we enjoy, most of us happily do it, because we enjoy being with our partner more. If he can't do that, then perhaps R isn't the road he should travel.


Me: FBS
Him: FWS
Kids: 15 & 17
Married for 22 years now, was 16 at the time. .
D-Day Sept 26 2008
Fully R'd, and Happy Happy Happy

Posts: 8594 | Registered: Oct 2008 | From: St. Louis
Tearsoflove
♀ Member
Member # 8271
Default  Posted: 3:21 PM, July 24th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I've said pretty much that identical thing in the past, and I've been told that I'm controlling and that the guy doesn't work well with ultimatums. So then I tend to worry, and I back WAAAY off by saying okay you're right, and I just deal with it.

You can't set a boundary if you aren't also prepared to set consequences and follow through. I told him I wouldn't tolerate it and I would divorce him and I meant it. Your backing off means your boundaries have no consequences which essentially means you have no boundaries...


"Just because I don't care doesn't mean I don't understand." ~Homer Simpson


Posts: 4102 | Registered: Sep 2005
Lonelygirl10
♀ Member
Member # 39850
Default  Posted: 3:43 PM, July 24th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

You can't set a boundary if you aren't also prepared to set consequences and follow through. I told him I wouldn't tolerate it and I would divorce him and I meant it. Your backing off means your boundaries have no consequences which essentially means you have no boundaries...

Yeah, someone in my first post on SI I think told me that I had no boundaries. That's why I brought it up with my IC, and she told me that I don't have the right to tell him that I don't want him to engage in certain behavior, because that's treating him like a child. My IC says that I should trust him to do the right thing, without me telling him to. And if I can't trust him, then I shouldn't be with him. I get what she's saying... but it just feels more complicated than that to me.

I know you were tested for STD's...but was he? You say he's had a few "cold sores" since he admitted he cheated...has he been tested yet?

Yeah, he was tested. All was negative. He has gotten two cold sores since A, and never had any before. It's a huge trigger for me. The first cold sore is what set off all my questions that led to Dday. I will be unbelievably pissed if he gives it to me, since I've never had one.

I don't want you talking to, hanging out with, or doing anything with Mr No Morals." It is horribly disrespectful to me, and encouraged you to make some really bad choices. If you choose to contact/hang out with or see Mr No Morals again I will leave.

Yup, I said that. He agreed, but said it bothered him. I talked to IC, and she said I handled it incorrectly. She said I can say that it bothers me, but I can't tell him what to do.

I guess part of my struggle is that he reverses the logic on me, and I feel restricted. I have a female friend that he doesn't like because she's single and still kind of in the party phase. So he tells me that if I want him to stop seeing Mr. No Morals, then he wants me to stop seeing her. It makes sense. He doesn't like her. But... I don't want to stop seeing her. I know myself, and I don't get into trouble with her. I go to things with her like dinner, and I avoid drinking in bars with her and stuff. The latest argument was a concert, and I went even though he didn't want me to. I don't feel like I'm doing anything wrong by seeing her, but his logic does make sense...

How did everyone here find an IC? I just looked on psychology today's website for a relationship counselor. How do you know who's good and who's not?

[This message edited by Lonelygirl10 at 3:48 PM, July 24th (Wednesday)]


29 Bgf
Dday: April 2013
Relationship ended: January 2014

Posts: 1168 | Registered: Jul 2013
JanaGreen
♀ Member
Member # 29341
Default  Posted: 3:56 PM, July 24th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Your counselor is making my head hurt. How can you trust him to do the right thing when he's proven by his actions that he can't be trusted?


We're both in our 30s. One awesome 4-year-old daughter.

Posts: 6764 | Registered: Aug 2010 | From: Somewhere in the South
Lonelygirl10
♀ Member
Member # 39850
Default  Posted: 4:33 PM, July 24th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Your counselor is making my head hurt. How can you trust him to do the right thing when he's proven by his actions that he can't be trusted?

I think maybe she was talking more in general, trying to give me general relationship advice instead of A advice? I'm not sure. Like I said, I'm really confused after meeting with her yesterday. It's also possible that I misunderstood her, because boundaries have always been an issue that I've struggled with. I never know where the line is on being controlling, and I've had too many exes say that I was controlling. But then when I post on here, I'm told that I don't have boundaries. So, I'm confused.

[This message edited by Lonelygirl10 at 4:34 PM, July 24th (Wednesday)]


29 Bgf
Dday: April 2013
Relationship ended: January 2014

Posts: 1168 | Registered: Jul 2013
whatnow8
♀ Member
Member # 36576
Default  Posted: 4:57 PM, July 24th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Thank you for this thread, LG. I so needed it today. I have this same issue, and was discussing it with my IC yesterday. I have no idea how to find a good IC. This one is #4 for both me and WH.

In the past my IC has said I shouldn't let WH treat me like a doormat. But then she says that I handle things incorrectly. So, I told her I was confused about what she meant. She said that she means I need to tell him exactly what I want him to do. (for an example she used him not leaving dirty clothes laying on the floor) When he leaves his clothes on the floor, even though I've told him not to, I need to decide if I'm going to humble myself and just do what needs to be done. But then she said that it's my own fault, because I pick them up. If he decides that he's just going to go buy new ones instead of cleaning them up then let him. But I feel like then there really aren't any consequences, kwim?

Seriously, the advice that I see on here is so much better than anything I got from any of the counselors I saw. Half the time I feel like they contradict themselves, I'm at least as confused when I leave as when I walked in.

[This message edited by whatnow8 at 4:58 PM, July 24th (Wednesday)]


wtf?? How insane does your life have to get that you want to polygraph your freaking HUSBAND. ~ OldCow18

It's hard to make a decision when you're too tired to hold on and too in love to let go. ~ unknown


Posts: 178 | Registered: Aug 2012 | From: midwest
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