Do you ever feel like there are people in your life that are there for the sole purpose (soul-purpose) of testing your boundaries?
I have been working on this “Boundary issue” for years – maybe even a lifetime. It’s the hangover that comes from too many years as a Pleaser and a Good Girl.
For some reason, I was under the assumption that once you dealt with an issue it was over. The other day I was reminded that issues are like onions…they have many layers that need to be peeled back one at a time, revealing a new level of opportunity to grow and expand.
Last week I received a call from a friend I hadn’t heard from in almost a year. She said she wanted to meet for lunch. “It’s an Emergency!” Usually, I try to avoid long conversations with her as they always seem to be one-sided, and I end up drained and resentful. However, my curiosity got the best of me and I agreed to meet her that day. For the next two hours, I listened to tell me in detail about how her hairdresser ruined her life – and by life I mean her hair. She barely took a breath as she recounted each appointment to correct what she viewed as nothing less than a highlight disaster. As she spoke of her quest for hair perfection, I literally witnessed her become happier and more radiant as she lightened her load – and dumped her hairdressing mishap on me.
Thank Goodness it was time for carpool!
This person was not coming to me because she was in a crisis, conflicted or looking for advice or support. She was looking for a captive audience to dump her woes with little regard for my time, my interest and my boundaries.
She is what I call a Boundary Buster.
What I learned is this – we have the right to say, “Enough! I can’t hear one more thing.” We have the right to never go to lunch with this boundary-buster again. And, although it’s difficult in the middle a Narcissistic Monologue to know exactly when “enough – is enough”…. when we recognize that feeling that our boundaries have been trampled, that our soul has been soiled and that we never want to experience anything like that again – we know to say NO the next time that person calls.
“When someone shows you who they are…believe them the first time.” —Maya Angelou