I knew domestic violence is so controversial, getting messages out to victims meant I would indeed not get many shares, because they probably have trust issues. Much of my audience use anonymous profiles so they cannot be traced by abusers, it's totally fine with me. I do wish more people who aren't afraid can share, because I managed to reach 150,000 people on my own, I think they can also reach 150,000 more people if we work together.
Online numbers aren't always telling the truth, likes for likes, follow for follow, as well as bought fake followers inflate numbers, so we see low to no engagement for some large follower accounts.
Not to mention the use of corporate bots to astroturf, out to make a quick buck at the expense of the public, it's no wonder that so many people are stuck in victimhood, not getting the help they need.
So here it is, fake news about boundaries.
1. Withdrawal from socialisation is boundaries. Isolation is demanding for our mental health, prolong isolation can push someone to be suicidal, we're social creatures, we need people around us. The pandemic aside, I'm talking about on normal days, avoiding people erodes our mental health.
2. Boundaries are a sign of distrust. Walls imprison someone, boundaries are doors that allow people to know how to interact with us. We can feel safe, curate our energy, show someone out the door if they violate our principles and values.
3. Hyper vigilance is boundaries. People with unresolved trauma often overly risk assess in their subconscious minds, they rely on black or white thinking to quickly determine if someone is safe or unsafe, this thinking frustrates them by themselves, it has nothing to do with you.
It usually involves perceived threats that're not there, ending in unfounded distrust of someone based on imagination. The intensity of their unregulated emotions is seen as an erroneous sign of their altruism, the calmer the other party is, the more regulated their emotions, the more they distrust them, they don't associate calmness with altruism.
This is further influenced by social discrimination such as sexism, racism and lesphobia, etc. Mentally ill people sometimes don't seek professional help and seek purpose through activism instead. It's best to refer them to professionals who can help them, act as secondary empathetic support, to avoid personal exhaustion. They need to manage their mental health before being activists, useful coping mechanisms need to be in place first.
4. Boundaries is about selfishness versus selflessness. People with weak or no boundaries often have distorted ideas of virtue, they view people with good boundaries as selfish because that's how they see themselves when they attempt to set boundaries. If they keep exploring, they usually realise the problem is indeed them, before they reach that realisation, the problem will always be you.
Due to these 4 issues, no matter how trustworthy you're, what you say and what you do is congruent, your actions always match your words, they will be unable to trust you.
Even if 99 people you meet trust you, they will be the last one. Be careful not to end up trying to people please them or try to rescue them, walking on eggshells isn't a way to live.
5. Being stressed out is lack of boundaries. Taking risks is a health sign of a thriver, when we take on a new challenge, whether it's talking about a new social issue or having a new job, have an unexpected crisis like being sexually assaulted or the pandemic, our stress increases. Give yourself permission to slow down and address the change in environmental factors instead. Stress isn't always due to lack of boundaries, although people who lack boundaries are constantly uncertain, even without a change in environment, they're constantly stressed out because they do not trust their own judgement.
6. Boundary setting is an event. Boundary setting is a process, as we explore new experiences, meet new people, we increasingly learn what's acceptable and unacceptable to us. With existing people as well, as you adjust, they need to adjust, if they can't then consider maybe you have no choice but to end the relationship.
7. Boundary setting is betraying someone or a group. We have our own changing commitments in life, boundary setting is only effective when someone or a group is willing to cooperate. Fear not, reasonable people will want to change for the better, they want to do better for themselves and see social change happen as much as you.
8. Boundaries require aggression to keep. Aggression deters people with healthy boundaries from interacting, people with healthy boundaries like me will avoid aggression immediately, there're no second chances, we love ourselves too much to be around aggressive people. There's a difference between assertion and aggression, aggression overpowers and pushes people away, assertion protects us from hostility, it's a self preservation method.
9. Boundaries is lack of empathy. It is not, boundaries is always centered on empathy, having empathy doesn't mean you can afford to expend yourself in yet another way. Boundaries is about creating win win situations, it's about community building, fostering deeper relationships with loved ones and contributing to social good.
10. Everyone want boundaries. Everyone need boundaries, the criminal minded do not want it, abusers do not want it, they do not want it for themselves or you. Some people will never walk into therapy, they need to pay a heavy price before they wake up, their lives must be in utter chaos before they do something about it, this is why we need boundaries, to refuse enmeshment with them, so they don't drag us down.
Social services are inadequate in all countries, corruption and exploitation means it ends up on the shoulders of activists, activists who're under the same exploitative system, we need to know when to draw the line, to avoid being overwhelmed.
Some will not wake up ever, boundaries is about accepting the brutality of the world and deciding when to write them off, aware that resources aren't enough for all of us, innocent hardworking people also aren't all getting the help they need, us working hard and being innocent doesn't mean we will always get the help we need either, we will still feel disappointed at times.
It's a sad and maddening idea, where the top 1% hoard wealth, power and influence, a good reason for social change makers to rise up to prevent exploitation.
Eshet chayil, God is a She.
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