Posted by: ladybughugs | July 9, 2008

Boundaries

Apparently there are no boundaries in our house. If it exists it’s there for the taking. Whether it be an open space on the calendar, a lap to sit on, a space between H and I in our bed, my chocolate and coffee stash. This does not sit well with me.

Scout is good about asking before taking anything. We have work to do when it comes to appreciating the time and energy it takes keeping up with his busy social/sports/school calendar. It seems he is a glass-half-empty kind of guy in that, at the end of the day he sees everything that was not up to his expectations, no matter how much we’ve crammed into it. On the other hand, he can be very good helping with Lil’bug when I need a time-out! Sometimes, though, Lil’bug will not be distracted.

Lil’bug only takes what is within reach (and that’s not much) and then needs help opening it, so if she can’t have something she doesn’t get it. She does not understand the limitations time and space place on us. Normal toddler stuff. We’re working on it. It takes time. But, it’s just so draining!

H will help himself to whatever he finds. Even if he doesn’t like it. This makes me crazy! Why would you eat something you don’t really like? He doesn’t like dark chocolate, I do. So I buy chocolate dark for me and what he likes for him. It doesn’t matter. Once he’s consumed everything that was purchased for him (his ‘A’-list) he’ll proceed to those things that I bought for me. My special treats. Those items I don’t necessarily want right now, but when I do want them I want them to be there.

Writing it makes it all sound sort of silly and if you’re thinking, ‘wow, if that’s the worst of her problems…!’, I’d completely understand. I know that there are much bigger issues to get riled up about. I think I wouldn’t even notice if it happened once or twice. I think I’d be able to overlook it if it happened occasionally. I don’t mind sharing, most of the time. But, sometimes I need something for me. Is that so wrong?

It seems there is always something I’m giving, whether it is tangible or intangible. I knew when we decided to have kids that giving more, doing more, being more, was part of the package. And that’s ok. But, am I not allowed to have anything just for me? Time, when I’m not drop-dead exhausted, to pursue something that interests me? Space, where I don’t have a little toddler-monkey climbing on me or using her elbows on my body to get herself into a better position? Chocolate and coffee that isn’t community property?

I wish I liked soaking in a hot tub. I don’t. I wouldn’t get peace to do it, anyway. And we changed the knobs on the doors when we moved into the house so Scout couldn’t get himself locked in the bathroom, so I’m not sure I’d get the space/privacy to do it.

Does having these feelings make me guilty of being a glass-half-empty kind of person? What kind of boundaries do you have in your house?

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Responses

  1. I go through the same struggle with mine… Mommy’s Chocolate is NOT for anyone else!!! Mommy can’t eat your chocolate, please don’t eat hers!!!

  2. When my wife and I got married, each having a child of our own, boundaries seemed extra important. Afterall, we would be newlyweds with 2 children. We needed quality time and a sanctuary. So we instituted The Bedroom Door Rule. The rule goes like this:

    Door Open – Ask if you may come in

    Door half-closed – Knock and then ask if you can come in.

    Door closed – Unless the house is on fire or you are bleeding, don’t even think about coming near that door.

    It works when I’m home (the enforcer). When I’m gone my wife’s daughter (who has boundary issues) will violate this rule at will. It’s a never-ending struggle. My biggest guilty pleasure in life is when she thinks I’m at work and knocks on our closed door only to find me on the other side. The look of terror and the subsequent stuttering excuses are priceless. (Yes, I love torturing my children.)


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