Dating with boundaries is one of the ways to maintain a healthy relationship. Setting good personal boundaries is essential to creating healthy relationships, increasing self-esteem, reducing stress or anxiety, and checking depression.
Boundaries include physical boundaries, as well as emotional ones. While the former includes your body, personal space, and privacy, the latter involves separating your feelings from someone else’s.
A violation of one’s boundary may include taking responsibility for another’s feelings, letting someone else dictate for you, and sacrificing your needs to please others. Are you familiar with the boundaries of dating?
If not, then you’re in luck, because in this article, I’ll share some essential examples of boundaries in dating and equally discuss how to set dating boundaries that you can actually keep.
One of the values that should be clearly distinguished in a relationship is the communication pattern. By this, I mean the general mannerism at which you both will relate with each other, without anyone getting offended or overwhelmed. Setting boundaries like this are essential because good communication and understanding are central to any good relationship.
Couples, in this case, should be able to identify which pattern works well for them to avoid conflict. Furthermore, this boundary encompasses the kind of names to call each other, the choice of words when angry or having an intense argument, and how you address one another.
Practicing healthy values is as important as any other boundary that could be established in a relationship. Family members of both couples usually have a way of interfering, whether in relationships. Most of the time, these things happen unintentionally. However, when setting up healthy boundaries for your relationship, family interference should not be left out.
Family interference may include regular or unannounced visits from parents, involving the family in internal disputes, or including family in the decision-making process of your relationship.
This interference can, in most cases, create tension and friction between you and your partner. You’re just getting to know one another, there should be less interference from your family at this point.
Individuals should address the issue of personal space soon enough when getting into a relationship. Some people desire to have their personal space and not be intruded by anyone, not even their partner.
Personal space here might include, but is not limited to, phone passwords, call logs, text messages, emails, sharing clothes, spooning, and even public displays of affection.
When getting into a relationship, this space will most likely be shared. It is necessary to hold a deserving conversation with your partner before you guys start dating. Relationship goals can only be achieved through healthy dating, and that means setting boundaries right from the beginning.
Not everyone appreciates social media publicity. Some people would rather just be in a relationship quietly without drawing so much attention on the social platform. If you are this kind of person, or your dating partner is, you should hold a conversation that will establish acceptable rules regarding social media use and public displays of affection.
In most cases, it may be that your partner has too many people from work, the gym, or social gatherings on his social media page and does not feel too comfortable sharing his relationship details with them or with strangers.
On physical intimacy, some people have different preferences where and how they want to be touched. Whether or not they want to kiss on a first date or have sex on the first night together, these are critical issues that deserve clear and distinct conversations. And that should be done on time.
If you are one who wouldn’t mind kissing on the first date, or you would rather wait till the third date to get intimate, you should be quick to discuss this with your partner before it gets too late.
When boundaries in dating are set on time, you and your partner will respect one another better and avoid stepping on each other’s toes.
There are different kinds of intimate relationships. You have to be specific as to what kind of relationship you are in if you’re going to set or draw any guidelines. Plus, what kind of personality does your partner have? Maybe he is a jovial and social person; hence, he likes making new friends – both male and female.
You have to set boundaries for this kind of behavior to avoid getting hurt or disrespected. You have to clarify if it is okay to have other female friends, best friends, or friends with benefits.
It is necessary because some men would appreciate a polygamous relationship or an open one. Once this issue is clarified at an early stage, you will be confident about what you are signing up for with your partner.
No matter how close you are, everyone will eventually need some space. Space in this context does not necessarily mean being alone; it involves spending time with friends, and even family. This might come off as a big issue if it’s not properly discussed and agreed upon.
Clear boundaries should be established regarding this kind of issue. In any healthy relationship, both parties should have the leverage to have a good time with family or friends whenever they want, it should not be a big deal. It can only become an issue when clear boundaries were never drawn from the onset.
Some of the boundaries in dating include healthy communication, sharing your space, getting on the same page about future dates, being clear about commitment and seeing other people, knowing where you stand on physical intimacy, and addressing family interference.
Unhealthy relationship habits involve disregard for your own and others’ values, wants, needs, and limits. They can also lead to potentially abusive dating/romantic relationships. Some of these unhealthy habits include disrespecting the values and beliefs of other people when you do not agree with them, not accepting when others say no, feeling like you are responsible for other people’s happiness, touching people without their permission, and trying to engage in sexual activity without explicit consent from the other party.
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Having healthy values and limits entails setting up do’s and don’ts that will guide our daily interaction with people. Without setting boundaries, we may likely override our feelings and desires. We may get ‘beaten’ alive by people who are very clear about what they want.
Start by communicating your thoughts with him, never assume or guess your partner's feelings, take full responsibility for your actions, and follow through on what you say. Also, don’t be arrogant or disrespectful, be ready to deal with the repercussions, be patient with him, and act on these values.
Emotional boundaries have to do with separating your feelings from someone else’s feelings. These boundaries may include, keeping a reasonable distance from certain people, saying no to a task you do not want to do, accepting help when it comes, seeking help when necessary, asking for space when you need some time alone, dropping the guilt, and taking responsibility, social media boundaries, and not over committing to people.
This article is written for the sole purpose of shedding light on several ways of setting up boundaries in a romantic relationship. I have carefully and exhaustively discussed seven ways of keeping boundaries, and I hope it helps you whether you just started dating, or have been dating for a while.
If you found this article helpful, please feel free to like and share it with family and friends.
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