Why are boundaries important to me right now? How am I setting and keeping healthy boundaries, today?

A couple of listeners shared their experience of boundaries. Spencer's discussion is guided by this outline.

  • How Al-Anon Works, Chapter 11 Detachment, Love, and Forgiveness has a section titled Personal Boundaries.
    • “… many of us find it difficult even to begin [to focus on ourselves] because we have lost track of the separation between ourselves and others.”
    • “Enmeshed” best describes my relationship with my loved one before Al-Anon 
  • I didn’t understand where I stopped and someone else began, so naturally I tried to take responsibility for everything.
  • Discovering boundaries: internal and external
  • Internal: “this is mine, that is not mine” (also the “hula hoop” concept)
    • Serenity prayer is a big help here.
  • External: limits I set on my behavior and limits I set on what I will tolerate
    • I will make sure I get enough rest, despite how late anyone else wants to stay up.
    • I reserve the right to remove myself from uncomfortable situations
    • I won’t give you more than I am comfortable giving
    • Not exactly a slogan: “Givers need to set boundaries because takers have none.”
  • Why are boundaries important now?
    • At home with my wife (and dog) 24-7.
    • Both of us are working — we both need to respect our work hours.
    • Outside the home: honor distancing guidelines (boundary on my own behavior)
    • Respect others’ desires
    • How do I respond when others are not honoring my boundaries (distancing)?

Readings and Links

We read from Hope for Today, November 6; Courage to Change, July 19, and How Al-Anon Works, pages 267-269


Please call us at 734-707-8795 or email feedback@therecovery.show with your questions or experience, strength and hope. Or just leave a comment right here.

6 comments on “Boundaries Today – 330

  1. Lisa says:

    Love your show… this one hits home a lot. Where are the songs from this episode?

    1. The Recovery Show says:

      Hi, Lisa. I did not select songs for this episode. That happens sometimes.


  2. Michelle says:

    I stumbled upon the podcast and its been remarkably healing and helpful.
    I grew up with a parent who drank and then luckily found and stuck to sobriety. However as a child I still felt like I was parenting them and am only now hearing of the concept of a dry drunk. Im hoping to dig deeper with this concept.

    Now as an adult, my sibling has gone down a dark path of alcohol, gambling, and other suspected addictions. My parents want me to “be nicer” to my sibling and asked me “why I dont help him more…” Boundaries….and the best line I learned from this show “No…is a complete sentence.”
    I had chest pain, panic attacks, nightmares and sleeplessness because of my sibling…it was taking all the joy out of my life and consumed me until I started to understand, that I cannot control his behavior. It was a pivotal moment and I credit your show with starting me on my path. Thank you.

  3. Lisa says:

    I love “Givers need to set boundaries because takers have none”
    Also, I like the skin reference. I am going to remember these. Very helpful.
    Thank you

  4. Bonnie T, says:

    I am very grateful with all of your episodes. Sometimes I don’t know what I will get from your podcasts but everyone has effected me in some way. Like this episode has really hit home. I need to learn how to have boundaries that will work for me and the other person . The delivery/timing is important. The content of the boundary I needs to be clear.
    Please know the work and service you do matters. Thank you for being here for the community of Alanon.

  5. Sally says:

    This podcast is amazing. You talked about every aspect surrounding boundaries and how to handle them in a relatable way. I have recommended this program and this particular podcast to several folks, all who have had the same reaction. Thank you for helping me deal with this important issue.

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