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Friday, December 7, 2012

It's Time for Boundaries

Goodness, I am sleepy today.

I got to thinking about something last night and this morning.  It has to do with the situation with my kids – having the family meeting, saying the things I need to say to them, etc.  This has been a life-long problem for me.  I did not speak up for myself in my marriage and it became abusive.  I don’t speak up for myself enough at work, so I find myself carrying too heavy of a load oftentimes, and I do the same thing with my kids.  I tend to believe things happen for a reason.  What if all that is happening has something to do with this issue of my needing to learn to speak up for myself (I am talking about some of the unusual things that have been happening)?  Actually, it is probably just a natural consequence.  If I don’t speak up for myself, people tend to walk all over me and I end up carrying way more responsibility than I should.

I have always been a pleaser.  I don’t like confrontation and I don’t like making waves. I have always had this mentality that I better be really good so people won’t mind having me around too much.  But I have become a pushover far too much of the time.

Now, I have never been a fan of people who are too pushy and who come in and take over situations in the wrong kind of way.  I have no desire to be that kind of person.  But that does not mean that I cannot be a nice and kind person and still uphold proper boundaries.  I owe that to myself.

There are certain things about my current situation that I wouldn’t necessarily do differently.  The problem with my daughter losing her job because of her health issue.  I think most parents would step in and help their child in a situation like this.  But there are other areas – a lot of them involving money and finances – where my kids are overstepping the line.  If I don’t uphold the boundary, then who will?  I guess I just expect them to do the right thing.  But they don’t always do that.  I am doing myself and them a disservice by allowing this to continue.  And there are other areas too.  If I am helping my kids this much financially, they should be helping me in every other way possible.  Jacob is staying with me and the girls are coming over a lot for meals because Stephanie has not been making enough money and I didn’t have enough extra to give her money for groceries.  Bethany also had a couple of things come up during the last month where she has been short on money.  So they come eat at my house.  I am fine with that.  But if I am doing all this for them, I sure as heck should not be cleaning up after them.  In fact, as much as I am helping them financially, I really should not have to be doing much of anything in the way of housework.  They should be doing it for me.   But they are not – or, at least, only a little.   And I have not been saying strongly enough that they should.  I don’t expect them to work as hard as I work myself (I don’t, but I should).  If I can work extra hours to make sure we all have enough, then they can certainly work extra hours lightening my load in other ways.  I expect that they should know this without me harping on them about it, but that is not working.  I am going to have to learn to communicate more directly and strongly.  This situation cannot continue.

And if they are misusing their money and that creates a situation where they cannot pay a bill, then I should not step in and help them.

You may be saying, what does this have to do with a weight loss blog?  For me, A LOT.  I think this “holding everything in” and not saying what needs to be said – in almost every area of my life – is part of the underlying problem.  I am not caring enough about myself to take up for myself.  I am not valuing myself.  It is little wonder that I am having difficulty taking care of myself  physically – doing what it takes to lose weigt.  I am carrying too heavy of a load all the time, I am constantly stressed, and my body is not handling it anymore.  I comfort myself with food, but that is only making the problem worse.

My kids love me, but they obviously are not respecting me enough.  Why should they when I don’t respect myself enough to say enough is enough?  Respect is earned.  They are obviously not going to do the right thing without my setting some boundaries.  So that is what this meeting tomorrow is about.  It is only a first step, but I have to do it.  Lord, help me not to wimp out like I usually do.

Food yesterday was good.  When I got home late last night, my son had fixed me dinner – a chicken stir-fry with vegetables and some brown rice.  I had already eaten the peanut butter crackers, so I didn’t want to eat too much.  I ate just a little of what he cooked – maybe a half cup total – and saved the rest to warm up for lunch today.  I need to drink more water, so I am going to work on that today too.  I stayed away from the candy bowl yesterday.  Last night when my cubie had gone home and I was still working, I set the candy bowl out of sight so it would not constantly be staring me in the face.

I did not ride the recumbent bike this morning.  I felt the need for a little more sleep.  I have had 3 bike workouts this week, and will try to get one done tomorrow and one Sunday.  That would be a good, strong week, considering my pain level right now, which is still significant.

Now let’s see if I can stay awake to get through my work day.  Happy Friday everyone!

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