Here’s the thing.
No. Means. Motherfucking. No.
When someone claims to love you, but continues to violate your boundaries, they do not love you.
When someone says you are safe with them, but continues to violate your boundaries, you are not safe with them.
When someone tells you they would never seek to control or manipulate you, but continues to violate your boundaries, they are seeking to control and manipulate you.
It doesn’t matter whether it’s family, a friend or a lover. If you have drawn a line around yourself and someone continues to disregard that line to gratify their own needs, that person does not belong in your life.
It doesn’t matter how nice that person may seem. Or how well-intentioned they say they are. Or how much they tell you they love you. There is no excuse or justification for intentionally and wilfully disrespecting the boundaries another person has put in place to feel safe. Even if they don’t understand. Even if they don’t agree.
Too often, abuse survivors who have had their boundaries violated from a young age struggle to put necessary, appropriate and healthy boundaries in place as adults. We grow up feeling powerless, voiceless, and not worthy of being protected. We also grow up as chronic people-pleasers, seeking the affirmation and validation we lacked as a child, making it easy to disregard our own needs for the needs of others in order to be accepted.
We believe being NICE and KIND means people will love us. We believe being NICE and KIND means having to be okay with people violating our boundaries. We believe being NICE and KIND means having to tolerate people in our life who are toxic. We believe being NICE and KIND means never being able to say no, or speak up about how we feel, or have our needs met.
We can be NICE and KIND and still be worthy to be seen and heard, and still be worthy of respect, and still be worthy of standing up for ourselves, and still be worthy of saying no, and still be worthy of putting boundaries in place, and still be worthy of having those boundaries honoured.
And when we’re done being NICE and KIND and people in our lives still refuse to accept or respect the boundaries we’ve put in place, we can in turn be NICE and KIND to ourselves by telling those people to fuck off, and doing what we need to ensure they are no longer part of our lives.
We are never responsible for the reactions of those who have chosen not to respect us.
We never need to apologise for choosing to love, honour, respect and put ourselves first.
We never need to believe we aren’t worthy to determine how we deserve to be treated, and demand nothing less from those around us.
“No is a necessary magic. No draws a circle around you with chalk and says, I have given enough” – Boundaries