Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Dealing with New Boundaries

January 30, 2013

Feelings check. I am feeling fearful. What is my relationship with my parents going to look like as I change and execute my new boundaries? I saw the hurt that my mother is experiencing, possibly from my giving messages that aren't intended. It caused some anger in me last night. She spoke for me – assuming my actions and lack thereof had indicated something that they didn't  Or did they? Living honestly at this level is difficult. It requires some communication that isn't easy.

I processed what I had and had not communicated and did not feel that I had done anything wrong – either deliberately or not. But that doesn't mean that I should ignore what happened. Resolving the matter asked of me to speak to the situation, which made me feel uncomfortable. I didn't address it directly, but I did address it nonetheless. It got resolved in that we will be celebrating the birthdays as a family on Saturday night rather than just my parents with Jon and Sophia (without me and Will).

It begs the question about the changes in our relationship and what is implied about how we relate and communicate. I have endeavored to be caring, trying to hold forth their worthiness and to be honoring of them. I accept that boundaries are needed for healthy living and there needs to be some shifting along those lines. I am showing progress in this area. I think it is confusing to them, and I am concerned that without the context of my own recovery and development that it is giving them messages that do not adequately communicate where I want us to be.

A part of me wants a greater separation so that I do not feel this burden. Another part fears that such a move would be very hurtful. An example of possible misunderstanding is my bringing up the possibility of getting a different house. Such a move would mean that kind of separation. How my parents interpret that does affect me. But I do not want to caretake the situation. That would not be healthy. I am focusing on what I believe I need to do which means spending time and resources on therapy and support group, including meeting with recovery friends during the weekend or week nights. This has very much impacted the time I would normally spend with my parents, particularly my mother. And I am feeling guilty about that. I do not like this guilt. It feels selfish to be so focused on myself. I am trying to reconcile what I want and need with the effect on others. It is a very different place to be – so focused on myself.  Debra talks about my caring for myself as I have cared for others. I believe that is what I am doing, but it seems somewhat awkward. Is it just new behavior, or perhaps there needs to be a balance I have yet to reach.

I have been thinking about Ready to Heal (by Kelly McDaniels). Last night I was reading about the payoff – the benefits of working through the recovery of love and sex addiction. I very much want to believe that the changes will happen and I can anticipate the strength, peace, and love from recovery. There is a courage that is required, as it won’t happen without the work of changing thoughts and behaviors. And these do produce other kinds of changes. As it has been described – when you change your part of the dance, it is now a new and different dance. And we don’t know those steps. Without daring to change, I risk never really getting what I want. And what I want is the peace, love, and serenity from being authentic and healed, releasing me to be who I really am. I want a healthy partnership; I want to overcome my addictions and I want to be adult in all my relationships. I want all that God has planned for me and to fulfill whatever it is He has created me to be. There is a risk that my parents won’t be able to accept the new boundaries, or that they will deal with them in an equally awkward way, essentially changing our relationship and losing our closeness. I do not want them to think I love them any less than I do now.

I will keep pressing on. I believe I am in the Healing Lane, and it has a flow to it. I want to keep up with it, not resist it. So here we go. Again. Time-out is over. 

1 comment:

  1. Sara, your post makes me think of one of my favorite quotes. It’s by Georgia O’ Keeffe. She said, “I have been absolutely terrified every second of my life, and I have never let it stop me from doing a single thing that I wanted to do.” If we choose to dedicate our lives to change and growth, then we are positioning ourselves to face fear and, I think, awkwardness. I have worked a lot in the last several years on being ok in the awkwardness that comes from doing things differently. I used to be so scared of the awkwardness, because I was caretaking for others. I didn’t want the people around me to feel uncomfortable. I’m slowly getting better, I think, at accepting the awkwardness and writing it off as practice. Thanks for the post! Lajla