How many of us has that mother or aunt that is always pushing the "when are you going to settle down talk" on you. You know the one when you and your long term boo are sitting at the table with two family members and one decided to interrogate you on the "obvious" next step: getting married.
In their eyes, it was complete innocence, but in our eyes, we felt they were crossing the line. You are already annoyed that this is a major concern or topic of discussion for other friends and family, but THIS was over the top. They feel strongly about you getting married now instead of waiting until what they considered to be "too old." After sitting back and thinking about it, you realized a part of the problem is that they didn't know that this topic was a big NO for you.
How many others of you have experienced this with your partner? Do you feel offended or disrespected by something they did, but you did not speak up about it or weren't firm on your stance? You have an imaginary line defined and drawn in your head, but they are unaware? Or maybe they are aware and you have been unsuccessful with helping them understand the impact.
Well, it’s time to have what we call "the formal boundaries talk". Ok, don't leave yet! It may sound intimidating, but we will walk you through this because this will help you and your partner walk more in unity and improve decision making!
Let’s start here: Boundaries in marriage are specific lines that are identified and agreed upon to strengthen, protect and preserve the marriage unit. You probably are familiar with the #1 marriage boundary to not have an affair, but that's not all.
Below are some different examples of boundaries that couples may not think about:
The word "no" (to your spouse and others) Turning off the phone at a certain time
Not walking away/shutting down when having a disagreement
Not spending money over the agreed upon limit
Limited interactions with members of the opposite sex
The list can go on and on, but we hope you get the idea. Keep in mind that boundaries in marriage are not designed to end relationships, but to preserve and deepen them." Every marriage needs them. In fact, it is a critical step in heeding to Peter's warning, to "be alert and sober mind" because the enemy is active with his attacks (1 Peter 5:8).
There's simply too much at stake to leave your marriage open and insecure with no accountability. We realize it may be tough for some to get started and maybe even difficult to overcome the fear of not knowing how your spouse may respond.
Maybe you don’t feel a boundaries talk is needed because you believe you a have a "general" understanding. Well, there's no room for assumption here! Why not get the clarity you both need to make sure you are right??
To help, counseling in this area will teach you why marriage boundaries are 100% necessary for every marriage, how to have an effective conversation that is safe and inviting and how to create a step by step guide for you to set marriage boundaries to protect your marriage/relationship from hurtful circumstances and bring you closer as a couple.
For more on I Forever Will Christian Marriage Counseling, contact us at www.iforeverwill.com or 346 349-6441.
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