By Paulette Murray, Post Grad Degree DCU, Ireland, OL Degree, Ucc Ireland
Boundaries are the way I know where I stop and you begin.
We need boundaries in every relationship.
To live in a relationship without boundaries is like trying
to drive down the freeway with your eyes closed in a snowstorm.
Years ago as an anxious parent of my young children I was afraid to have boundaries between myself and the people I loved most in the world. My fears were all about what ifs.
What if having boundaries meant that I didn’t protect my children? Did having boundaries mean that I wasn’t a good Mum? What if my children got hurt? What if I neglected to know everything necessary to keep these precious children safe?
Until I learned how to meet my needs in an empowering way I felt as though I was driving down the freeway with my eyes closed in some very cold snowstorms.
Now, in the present as my fourth child is leaving the nest heading to University for the first time I’m glad I finally gained the courage and knowledge to create healthy boundaries between me and my children.
I let them lead. I supported each as independent choices were made.
I listened to disappointments when one child didn’t get what he wanted, or when another was unhappy when someone behaved differently from how she believed he should have.
I let them learn. I allowed them to grow and become the truly mature young adults that they have chosen to become.
I learned to trust in me and them. As a result they in turn have learned to trust themselves.
Now our eyes are wide open. Now we are driving down the freeway of life gazing at the beautiful landscape that is our family and our family’s journey.