The Ten Laws of Boundaries Series
Law #6: The Law of Evaluation
To have boundaries is to live a purposeful life. It is important to evaluate the effects of setting boundaries and be responsible to the other person, but that does not mean that we should avoid setting boundaries because someone responds with hurt or anger. Deciding to set boundaries is difficult because it requires decision making and confrontation, which in turn, may cause pain to someone we love. When substance use disorder has caused damage in our family system, we can view the pain in a positive light and use it as a tool to help our loved ones. Practicing honest communication and setting boundaries is the healthiest way to love our family members and also ourselves. It is important to recognize the difference between hurt and harm. Being truthful and setting healthy limits may hurt someone’s feelings but it does not cause them harm. In fact, it does the opposite for our relationship with them and applies proper framework for shifting the family dynamic to a healthier position.
3 C’s of Al-Anon
- We didn’t CAUSE it
- We can’t CONTROL it
- We can’t CURE it
AND WE WON’T CONTRIBUTE TO IT TODAY
Questions to Consider This Week
- Is it possible that my fear of confrontation and experiencing a negative reaction from my family member, has prevented me from establishing healthy boundaries?
- Will I examine my current boundaries to determine if they are hurtful or harmful? If I am unclear on the distinction, will I commit to asking others for help such as my sponsor, therapist or treatment staff?
- Do I operate under the delusion that I am responsible for the feelings of others and make decisions based on that delusion in my personal life?