Guilt Trips for setting Boundaries: When they make you feel bad for holding the bottom line.

Written by heidimcguirk

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September 24, 2020

If you’ve finally gotten to the place of setting a boundary, I first want to take a minute and congratulate you! It’s no easy feat! Setting a boundary with someone you truly care about is hard.

But now that you’ve set the boundary, it’s being met with resistance or push back and that’s making you feel pretty bad.

So, what do you do about that?

I had a video request about this very topic from a wife of an alcoholic.

Likely, if you get to the place of setting boundaries, you too are dealing with an unhealthy person.

This could be a toxic, dysfunctional or narcissistic person.

Addiction looks a lot like narcissism in that it displays the same level of denial of the impact to others and lacks insight and empathy into the feelings of those effects.

In this particular scenario, the wife had set the boundary with her husband that she was unwilling to sleep in the same bed with him if he was drinking.

Awhile later, after holding the boundary, he complained that he didn’t feel like they had a relationship because she wasn’t sleeping in the same bed as him.

Now, here’s the thing, narcissists and addicts are delusional in many respects. They live in denial.

So as he sees it, she’s creating the problem in the marriage, totally missing the fact that she’s set a boundary about his drinking.

Addicts, alcoholics, narcissists and toxic people use blame, shame, guilt and denial when confronted with their own behavior.

So, it’s natural that he behaves in this way, blaming her and totally missing the point.

But his wife, if she gets sucked into the lie, will believe that she is causing the problem, losing sight of the real issue too.

Her job is to stay awake when he’s asleep to the truth.

The best thing to do in moments when someone is using blame or guilt is to calmly restate the boundary, reminding him or her why you set the boundary in the first place.

Please watch the video for more.

If you want help in setting boundaries, you can schedule an appointment here.

If you want to request a video topic, you can do that here.

Thanks for watching the video and as always, I love to read your comments so please leave your thoughts.


Coach Heidi.

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1 Comment

  1. Sharee Morrison

    I am so very greatful for having found you Heidi, I’m on a path of finding my own peace. I have finally taken action and left my partner, functioning alcoholic, strong narcisstic traits, until recent, I was stuck, always trying to fit in. I’m finally able to value my own needs. By listening to you daily and taking notes, you are giving me so much help to work on myself and through this I can and am moving toward a much healthier way of life. Thankyou so much.

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