May 29th, 2008

Boundaries -- useful tool, or not?

I ran across http://unrulyasides.wordpress.com/2008/05/28/having-a-healthy-sense-of-boundaries/ , courtesy of Autism Hub, and was interested. I hadn't thought my rejection of boundaries was a class-wide phenomenon. I'm still not sure, but I thought I'd throw the idea out for discussion.

My own take on it is that if one uses boundaries as one's source of structure, one ends up obsessing on where the edges of things are, and most things don't have all their edges carefully defined. Most human judgments of my experience are fuzzy, not the sort of "are you X or Y" exclusive reasoning that seems to be the very low denominator that public debate has sunk to. So a lot of effort can be wasted, for example, in deciding I am straight, gay, or bi, instead of simply accepting that I'm human, as a result of that am also sexual, and since sex tends to be more fun with partners and partners more often than not are gendered, I'm going to be having sex with men, women, or both, and if I'm going to be doing more than discussing the theory of it I'd better get my ass out the door and *find* some of those partners.

I prefer to get my structure from goals: What am I trying to achieve, and what actions can I take in pursuit of that achievement? Working from this ideas, boundaries only become relevant if there's something I really need to avoid, and I also don't have to spend time making boundary decisions unless there's something really blatant going on.

Getting my boundaries pushed is where useful growth happens, and if I spend all my time defending them I'm not going to grow much.

How do you work it, and what do you think on the topic?

best,

Joel