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Old 05-26-2011, 09:08 AM
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How to...

I was wondering, how do you go about enforcing your boundaries with an addict? Once someone has crossed boundaries and gotten away with it, it seems almost impossible to enforce them. For example, AH will hang up on me when he gets mad. Obviously this is inappropriate and at one time we both viewed it as such. But he has done it so many times he thinks it is ok. I no longer call him back when he does it. But other than that, how would I show him that it is unacceptable? this is just one example of unacceptable behavior I no longer wish to tolerate but just don't know how to show him it's not ok. Thanks for any advice. I am really trying to live healthier.
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Old 05-26-2011, 09:17 AM
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Boundaries are "I will/will not" statements and let go of the outcomes.

Attempts to control usually begin with "you will/will not" and attempts to manipulate other people's behavior.

"I will not have phone convos with anyone who has a tendency to hang up on me" is a boundary. The caller is free to hang up or not. If he hangs up, take responsibility and stop answering the phone when he calls. Problem solved.
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Old 05-26-2011, 09:23 AM
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exactly.

A boundary is something you enforce for yourself. It's not about him. It's about you and what you find acceptable - and what you will do when someone treats you in a manner that you find unacceptable.

"I value respect and manners on the telephone. Therefore, if someone treats me with disrespect on the phone or hangs up on me, I will no longer accept phone calls from them."

You can't force him to treat you respectfully, but you sure as heck don't have to allow people who treat you disrespectfully to be part of your life.
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Old 05-26-2011, 09:48 AM
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I could not have said it better than outtolunch and hello-kitty.

I have boundaries with my addict-brother, he has learned over time since I stick to them, that I am serious about them. He no longer asks me for money or for help while in his recovery.

My ex had issues with yelling and hanging up, also being disrespectful on the phone as well, and this is while he was in prison, I set boundaries with the calls, and eventually stopped taking them.

I agree that these boundaries are for you, and not for him, so stick with them!

Take care of you....
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Old 05-26-2011, 09:57 AM
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Right on Anvilhead!! That is a great way to explain boundaries, not just for the addict but for everyone...I honestly diddnt think about it like that before reading your post.

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Old 05-26-2011, 10:11 AM
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The last time my sister (not an addict) yelled at me on the phone then hung up, was the last time we spoke for 4 years. I went all out no contact until legal issues forced us to speak again. It briefly forced open the door and I allowed it to stay open. There have been no repeats of bad behavior this past year.
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Old 05-27-2011, 06:11 AM
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I'm going to take a different perspective on this. When my AS has called and started in on the quacking, I have been the one to hang up. I will preface it with "I can't talk to you when you are being disrespectful and I'm going to end this call. I love you." click

Is it rude? Perhaps. But it is something I have control of. Just because I pick up the phone (and I do have a choice not to pick up the phone), I don't have to listen to rude and inappropriate nonsense. I take control of what I can by ending the conversation.

Boundaries as stated above would be:

I will not answer the phone when he calls because I know how it end and that is not acceptable to me.

I will let all calls go to voicemail and make a determination if I will call him back based upon the tone of the voicemail.

I will not allow my emotions to be manipulated by this person.

I recently had issues with my exhusband sending me serial text messages. My phone sounded like a slot machine! bing bing bing bing bing bing. I changed my phone number. End of problem. Did it urk me to have to change a cell number that I had for ten years? A little bit but not as much as I was being urked by serial text messages that were disturbing my peace of mind.

Boundaries are tough because we have to change ourselves and the A will often escalate their behavior when we begin to change ours. I love the way someone explained boundaries here on SR:

Say what you mean (establish your boundary)
Mean what you say (the boundary is not negotiable)
and Don't say it mean (be calm and remove emotion from it)

gentle hugs
ke
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