about what I’m saying

PREVIOUS: Growth for the Scapegoat #3

SITE:Use of Language (Many links re. the meaning of words & phrases)


: We all use short-cuts in daily conversation, which is understandable, but sometimes this can do us a disservice.
There are truisms we take for granted, phrases & sayings we repeat without considering what they really mean. We assume they are correct, & that they apply across the board  (the latter is B & W thinking – a CD).

It is said that the unconscious has no sense of humor & is completely literal. It’s the reason affirmations need to be said in the positive: “I have a right to be happy…. rather than “I don’t want to suffer any more”, and stated as if our goal had already happened; “I am making / have made $100,000 in sales this year”, rather than “I wish I could make….”.

Language is so important, not just to connect well with other people, but mainly to connect with ourselves in the healthiest possible way. The Inner Child is always listening to everything we say to others, & at the same time is listening to the Bad Parent voice shouting or whispering in the background.
It’s up to the UNIT (healthy adult & loving parent) to make sure our language is kind as well as accurate.

In terms of having good mental boundaries, “Accuracy is more important than agreement”. Just because everyone else believes or does something – doesn’t mean we have to. Don’t let others confuse you. Don’t follow the crowd!

☁︎ NOTE: How we use Language is as important in the quest for ‘sanity’ as other factors. The words & phrases we choose either help or hinder our progress.

“I deserve to / You deserve it…..”
The problem is the word ‘deserve’. Sounds OK? Well, in terms of actual meaning, ‘deserve’ refers to something given as a reward for acceptable, special or difficult behavior (as in: “Here is your A+ / medal / Oscar / gold watch… deserve it”). It’s something earned, which is OK, since it’s good to be recognized & honored for accomplishments.

So it’s a YES if you’re rewarded for earning a living, getting a good grade, winning at a sport or climbing a mountain….

BUT it’s a definite NO when speaking of our rights as a person. We’re not supposed to deserve them. They’re ours no matter what. Using ‘deserve’ in the context of personal growth is misguided, because it implies that our worth is based on how much & how well we DO things.

This reinforces our difficult childhood, when we were only acceptable (if at all) based on the condition of how well we conformed to dysfunctional rules, instead of being loved unconditionally for just being here.

So, connecting “I deserve …..” with self-worth is a subtle distortion, disguised as Recovery, which ignores our BE-ing. The implied message is: “Produce or lose!” It sneakily tells us that we have to keep on earning validation & permission to have things which are in fact universal Human needs (love, freedom, respect, identity, guidance, dependability….), & therefore should not have to be struggled for.
This deep-rooted negative assumption is why we keep trying to be perfect & please everyone.

“Well, at least you’re alive, You’ll be just fine, You’re strong”
YES – of course. We want to affirm life & let people know we care about their existence.
❤︎ However, without making this a NO, there is a way in which these phrases are a kind of insensitive throw-away. With many people it’s just a polite standard.

But if you just had a devastating loss & may even be injured – like a serious accident with a death, a full-scale house fire, a near drowning, a severe physical assault, a major illness…. You’re in pain, in mourning, in shock! so those comments are not comforting or uplifting.
Without looking for pity or to be rescued, some indication of empathy or sympathy would be welcome, rather than a glib pat on the head.

NEXT: Phrases #2

List of HEALTHY Boundaries (Part 2)


& I can say it clearly

PREVIOUS: Emotional Bs

SITE: Personal Responsibility



• are pre-set guidelines for all areas of life. When we periodically regress into a symbiotic or self-effacing state (inevitable), we may need someone to help us re-established them
• protect us from our own emotional instability (in the WIC), with situations that feel vulnerable – if Healthy Adult is in charge
• protect our values & right to always be treated with dignity & respect
• prevent letting anyone enter our life inappropriately, or try getting us to do anything we don’t want to
• act as a warning sign when’re about to get into relationships or places unsuitable or dangerous – for us
• identify specific consequences when a boundary is breached

Healthy Bs means you CAN:
• stay in your body (be congruent) “I am my body”
• have self-esteem about your P self, no matter how you look
• can give & receive P. comfort
• protect your physical space from intrusion, invasion or abuse
• weigh the consequences before acting on a sexual impulse
• say NO to food, gifts, touch, sex … you don’t wantbody Bs
• touch & be touched – with discrimination
• it’s OK to move towards or away from someone
• the most comfortable space between you & another
• what’s appropriate modesty & openness with yourself & others. Modesty is not = being a prude! It’s about self-respect.
• aren’t afraid to distance yourself from anyone who can’t respect your Bs

Healthy Bs means that you CAN:
• know it’s OK to have some privacy / secrecy without guilt, even with intimates
• take back your projections (see others for who they really are, not what you think or wish them to be – or who your parents were)
• know when a miscommunication or CD is yours & when it’s someone else’s
• empower yourself to make healthy choices & be responsible for your thoughts
• act aswisdomsertive (not aggressive) by respectfully stating opinions, emotions & needs
• know what you believe (values) & what you want
• value your opinions, tastes & viewpoints, as much as those of others
• think & speak for yourself (without always quoting others)
• trust your own decisions, defining your truth as you see it
• own your toxic beliefs & work on replacing them
• say No or Yes honestly, & know you’re OK when others say No to you

Healthy Bs means that YOU :
• avoid expectations – know you might get turned down, but can still ask
• can ask for practical information, when needed
• communicate needs & wants clearly in all relationships
relationship types• give personal info gradually, then check how others respond
• notice any time others boundary-invade you
• teach others to treat you with dignity & respect
✶ you can stand up for our beliefs, even when in the minority
✶ accuracy is more important that agreement in communications
• go slow in a new relationship while checking for compatibility
• decide if a potential relationship will be good for you
• recognize that friends & partners are not mind readers
• respect others’ boundaries (ask if it’s ok before touching)

✦ No one can tell us who we are
✦ No one can live our pain or our joy
✦ Aloneness is a bounty from which we choose what we want
✦ Wisdom is in hearing & believing our own voice
✦ Our eyes can never see as clearly as our hearts
✦ Moresmarts is possible than we think, if we truly believe
✦ What we think we want may be inferior to what we receive
✦ To want nothing is as selfish as to give nothing
✦ Sharing cannot be real unless we keep enough for ourselves
✦ Giving is never losing, & giving freely is a semi-circle which completes itself in receiving
✦ Second-best may really be just second-arrived
✦ Help doesn’t always appear in the way we expect or demand
✦ No matter who walks with us, no one can walk it for us
✦ Friends can only stand by while we make our discoveries
✦ Often we may feel we’re walking alone, but we never are if we know who we are

NEXT: Setting Healthy Bs (Part 3)

ACoAS & WEAK Boundaries (Part 2)

rigid Bs 

so I don’t upset other people

PREVIOUS: ACoAs & WEAK Bs (Part 1)



They represent not having the right to our needs, often expressed as a general passivity in life – letting people & circumstances push us around.
BTW, you may notice that some of these expressions of weak Bs are the same or similar to those of rigid Bs. This is only natural since the underlying causes all come from our unhealthy upbringing.

SEXUALB invasion
We have weak Bs if we:
• can’r distinguish between love and sex
• have sex when we don’t want to
• feel a need to always be in a sexual relationship
• attach our self-esteem to being sexually attractive
• let others touch us, even when it’s uncomfortable or inappropriate
• “fall in love” at first sight  – just because someone seems interested or reaches out to us

We have weak Bs if we:
• are indecisive. & therefore unpredictable, undependable
• set no specific limits on our willingness to help others
• sacrifice our own goals, projects & self-care to help others – from FoA
• don’t protect our need for privacy, letting our physical space be invaded, such as letting people — stand or sit too close
— take and/or use something of ours without asking
— snoop around in our things…… without doing something about it
• allow others to take as much as they want from us (time, $$, energy….)
have to do something a certain way or modify our behavior so that someone else can continue their unproductive or unsafe behavior – as an enabler of any kind of bad or self-destructive behavior
• let others determine our wants, needs & tastes, sacrificing them to the desire of others
no choiceWE:
• give too much, either by being controlling (B invading) OR overly responsible (having to do everything ourselves)
overcompensate for when we think we’ve messed up in word or action
• measure another person’s caring by material gifts – how much, what kind
• accept unwanted gifts to not hurt feelings or make others angry

We have weak Bs if we:
• let other’s influence / effect our behavior, unclear about our own preferences
• always verbally agree with others, even when we actually don’t
• are afraid to ask for help, so have to constantly manipulate others to get what we want (indirectly)
• personalize everything, over-reacting to feelings or behavior of others (assume other’s reactions are all about us)
• feel like we’re covering something up or keeping a secret, such as battered wives hiding injuries, kids covering up parental addictions, emotional torture, mental illness….
• get too close too fast, share too much personal info (especially our faults) before establishing mutual trust
• ignore our inner voice & rely on others’ opinions, values & emotions
• allow the expectations of others to define our potential
• compromise values & beliefs to please others or to avoid conflict

We have weak Bs if we:
• are dependent for our identity & emotional well-being on what others think of us, so have become chameleons OR isolates
• symbiotically attach ourselves to someone, something – anything!
• need constant reassurance from others that we’re acceptable
• feel everything ‘too much’m not able to contain or soothe emotions
• are not cblend or leaveomfortable being alone – at least some of the time
• people-please – say yes when we want to say no, & then act out later, either on ourselves (S-H) or at others (passive-aggression)
• are constantly preoccupied with & overwhelmed by others’ emotions, needs & problems (take on as if our own), feeling responsible for their happiness & fulfillment
• ignore our own discomfort, anger, anxiety or fear so someone else can be happy & comfortable
• feel & act like victims, have no balance of power or responsibility in relationships
• have a high tolerance for abuse, for being treated with disrespect
• can’t say no, even when wanting to, for fear of rejection (abandonment)

NEXT: RIGID Boundaries – #1