Emotional Boundaries

The Logical Heart Knows Best

You have a right to feel and express your emotions healthily. We are each responsible for our own emotions, processing them, and expressing them appropriately.

No one may tell us how we should feel, or that we’re wrong for our feelings, or that we don’t really feel that way, that they know the actual reasons for our emotions, that they know us better than ourselves. We are the only ones that have access to our internal beings.

It’s manipulative and violating our boundaries when someone shuts us down and invalidates us. It’s a form of emotional abuse and gaslighting when another denies, minimizes, or negates our expression of our feelings and our reasons for feeling that way.

It’s also harmful to censor, filter, or deny our genuine emotions in order to appease someone else. In a healthy relationship, we honor and respect one another by allowing a healthy expression of our thoughts and feelings. We thoughtfully consider another’s perspective and work together to form solutions while deepening connection and understanding. We can behave as mature adults and use nonviolent communication, along with mutual love and respect, as compassionate, caring people.

You don’t have to be an expert or a healer to be a caring, responsible, loving, emotionally healthy person who honors another’s heartfelt expressions. Acting as a decent, ethical human is not an exceptional behavior that only healers do. We are all accountable for our behavior and we can be responsible, by educating ourselves and dedicate ourselves to getting better at being caring. You can say you care, but caring is a verb, it requires action. If you care, you honor others as you honor yourself. That means if you get to express yourself, then others may express themselves too. It’s not okay to dismiss someone you care about just because you don’t like or agree with what they’re expressing. Healthy boundaries allow for authentic expression and holding each other accountable when there is a major concern.

We all have to be accountable for our behavior surrounding boundaries, emotions, and communication. Avoiding, stonewalling and silent treatment is abusive. If someone is reaching out for clarity, asking for guidance and expressing criticisms, or asking for accountability, then it’s prudent to respond, especially if you value the relationship. If you don’t agree with the way they’re approaching you, then you can say so and set some boundaries for communicating further. It’s abusive and manipulative to avoid a discussion or give no response at all.

Being in an environment where you are constantly shut down can lead to a disconnect from your emotions and subsequent self-abandonment because you can’t maintain healthy boundaries with uncooperative others. If you are unable to maintain healthy boundaries, then it’s best to remove yourself from the unhealthy relationship.

Here’s a short video about emotional boundaries.

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Michelle Miyagi
Hi! I was an RN, BSN in mental/behavioral health for 27 years. Now I'm helping empower caring people like me to prioritize themselves by maintaining healthier boundaries for more freedom, peace, and joy. I am also active in Long Covid advocacy.

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