I’ve been thinking about the boundaries concept from the last post.
When one part of a whole lacks something, the other tends to overcompensate. I’ve always been puzzled by my husband’s insistence on taking responsibility for things that aren’t his – like my happiness, as a popular example. Look around and see what other examples you can find where the dominant partner – typically the male, but not always – does this, and also where one partner deliberately abdicates responsibility and demands the other take it up. “I don’t want to work; you owe it to me to provide.” That sort of thing.
What I find also interesting but sad is that the one taking on more responsibility than they should often feels resentful for it. Not always, but in the cases that I have experienced this is so. I also tend to get a little resentful when my own responsibilities are taken away and then payment is expected. Excuse me? Did I ASK you to take ownership of this thing which is actually mine? No, I did not and I will happily take it back because it is, after all, mine in the first place. Which is exactly what happened after WWII — women collectively went “I’m taking back my responsibility and ability to provide for myself. I need you still, as you need me, but holding survival and reproductive resources hostage is not part of the paradigm which needs to be birthed now. We need to navigate our way to an honest and empowered relationship for both of us – a relationship of inter-dependence which fosters our individual strengths for the betterment of all, especially our children. This co-dependent, crippled and disempowered paradigm we’ve been operating under for too long has got to go.”
Heh. Little bit of channeling there. *lol*
I wonder how many women have problems with men hearing their boundaries because they haven’t figured out how to hold them yet? I know I haven’t had any problems with men trying to push things after I’ve said no, but I also have a great deal of authority when I pull on it. If you can stop a dog attacking with a single word or gesture, then you don’t have a problem with having people believe you when you say “not interested”. Too many times I see people working with dogs and the dog is like “yeah, right, as if you actually mean that.” It boggles my mind when the owner then says “but I TOLD them no, why didn’t they listen?” Um, because energetically they know you lack the conviction to enforce the boundary you just laid down? Dogs are masters at reading energy, and whether we consciously know it or not so are we humans. Women as a collective have only had the right to say “no” for a generation or two, at most. It wasn’t until the 1980s that a man could be legally held accountable for violently raping and beating his wife for goodness sake. That’s not that long ago. Is it overly shocking that women collectively are still finding their way to clear and enforceable boundaries? Men have had scores of years practice, plus the psychic weight of generations to aid them. Women are still learning.
As always, this is exceedingly generalized and from a very “high overview” perspective. It is not individual per se. I do encourage everybody, male and female, to think about your relationship with your boundaries and the boundaries of those around you. Can you tell when someone (including yourself) is serious and willing to back up their declaration versus when they are not? How? Why do you think a boundary is declared when the will (not necessarily the means, but the will) to enforce it is lacking?