The B Word

It’s boundaries, y’all!

I hate telling people no. Yesterday, for instance, a customer came through my line with a bunch of coupons that weren’t valid for the items she was trying to purchase. I asked her if she’d bought a certain item. She snapped at me and showed me the (wrong) product. I took the coupons off manually and bade her farewell.

This is something I definitely need to work on. It’s important to be able to say no. Sometimes I don’t even have boundaries with myself. I’ll promise myself that I will actually eat breakfast when I get up, but when morning rolls around, coffee counts as a meal.

Boundaries are also extremely important in relationships, not just romantic ones, but in relationships with friends, parents, and coworkers.

I ended my most recent romantic relationship partly because of a lack of boundaries. We had fallen into this bizarre pattern of “I can’t be okay without you.” He went out of his way to help me around the house, and I grew resentful of him for being “too nice.” I am not fully independent from my parents, though I do not live with them, and I didn’t like the feeling of being smothered by a boyfriend who wanted to take care of me. Living separately from my parents has allowed me to make decisions such as what I eat for dinner, when I leave and return home, how to decorate my home, and much more. I do not like asking for help or having things done for me when I can do them myself. Yes, it was great to have someone organize the pantry, but at the end of the day, I can’t find the garlic salt!

It is because of boundaries that he and I are able to be friends now. When we were dating, we spent every moment together, and rarely went out and did things; we just hung around the house. I told him that we can’t hang out at either of our houses, and that we can’t be together as frequently as we used to be.

Today, we went out for coffee at Sweet Marlay’s, a cool, local coffee shop where people in recovery can often be found doing step work. We also hit up a thrift store where I impulsively bought a pair of blue boots.

He has also been setting boundaries with me and taking time for himself. Sometimes when he gets home from work, he’ll shoot me a text to say he needs a little while to chill and that we’ll talk later.

It makes me so happy that I now have a good friend who is working on improving himself and supports me in my own journey.

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