Unnecessary Boundaries – Part One

Although firm, loving boundaries or guidelines are healthy, it IS possible to overdo boundary establishment, in fact, we do it all the time!

By ‘overdo’ I mean we may find ourselves creating boundaries for children ‘by rote’, enforcing our own unresolved boundaries that have been passed to us by professors, parents, church or general social/cultural expectation.

I believe that when we do this we may be unconsciously providing a value that is unnecessary.

Unnecessary values have little strength in themselves and furthermore on a subconscious level, you as a creative individual don’t may not even believe in them.

This makes the ‘unnecessary value’ an easy target when a child is seeking something to challenge or rebel against!

And children WILL challenge a flimsy argument!

For example:

Healthy Values

  • Speaking and acting kindly toward others- to establish communication, connection and care between friends
  • Coming home at the agreed upon time- To be safe and accounted for and to learn that we are necessary to the smooth running of team
  • Listening when someone is speaking- to show respect and thus understand the feeling of respect creating a belief that we deserve respect and therefore easily attract respectful situations
  • To say thank you- learning that gratitude is an important technique in helping us understand that life will provide our needs. Establishing the concept that we all work together and ultimately are not alone.

Unnecessary Boundaries example

  • Children should be seen and not heard- teaches that it is not okay to express oneself…..?
  • Respect Your Elders- hmmmm what if an elder is abusing me?
  • Always DO as you are told- is it okay when someone tells me to do something I FEEL is bad for me?

I cannot say WHICH values YOU need to enforce. All parents and educators need to walk their own paths and negotiate their personal environment, creating the home or classroom that works best for all involved.

It is extremely important to develop self-awareness so as to give our children the best chance and limit their options for rebellion!

Look Out for Part TWO, HOW to develop self-awareness in relation to teaching boundaries!


8 thoughts on “Unnecessary Boundaries – Part One

  1. Well said! Being thoughtful about boundaries and expectations is important. I also like how you explain why each one matters. Perhaps if we can’t explained why, it doesn’t matter enough to be a boundary.

  2. I really like this, and I am glad you wrote it. Even as adults, we have boundaries that are unnecessary, and it DOES seem to incite a kind of restless spirit in me, and I am 59 years old!

  3. Hmmm, Just found you (because you found me!). As a soon to be parent, I have a lot of fear around this: rules for rules sake. I look forward to getting some good food for thought as I prepare for the job of a lifetime. Thanks.

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