This call is about setting boundaries with parents and establishing a sense of self. Today’s caller, Amy, calls in wanting to know how to incorporate self-love into her life but as you will hear in the call, she first needs to set boundaries and to individuate herself from her mother.
Any parent-child relationship, especially the mother-daughter relationship, can be challenging. Parents are often our biggest spiritual teachers and we should accept that they did the best they could. Think about your parents as children. Consider all the things they went through. Many of our parents were raised when there was no access to parenting tips and children don’t come with manuals. So, forgive your parents but also set boundaries with them.
Overprotectiveness can feel like love but it’s not. It is a love based on fear and not true unconditional love. It creates codependency and enmeshment. Amy became her mother’s possession rather than a separate being. She didn’t have a chance to form a sense of self.
It’s dangerous to think of someone as our obsession or belonging. We don’t own other people and we don’t want to love ourselves through others. Being someone’s source of love is enabling. When we become enmeshed with someone we take on their patterns.
If you have a parent or someone in your life you love out of obligation, set boundaries and do not falter. You may not like yourself or them, in the long run, if you don’t hold firm to your boundaries.
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- When it comes to self-love how are you doing?
- Does your confidence depend on external things?
- Are you extremely close to a parent?
- Are boundaries challenging for you?
Amy wants to know how to incorporate more self-love into her life.
Amy’s Key Insights and Aha’s:
- She struggles with self-confidence.
- She allows her physical attributes to determine her self-worth.
- She has an unhealthy relationship with her mother.
- She doesn’t have a clear sense of self or of who she is.
- She feels guilt and an obligation to her mother.
- She has no sense of self.
How to get over it and on with it:
- She needs to individuate herself from her mother.
- She should get professional help and research Terri Cole’s work to help her with boundary issues.
- She should have a conversation with her mother about setting boundaries.
- She should write a letter and let her mother know what she wants their relationship to be.
Assignments and Takeaways:
- Get clear on the quality and health of your current relationships. Reconsider relationships that rob you of your sense of self.
- If it’s time to set boundaries with someone, write out the conversation you want to have before speaking with them.
- Write an F-U letter to the person you want to set boundaries with to get your anger out; then rip up the letter. Then, write a letter about how you want the relationship to be.
- Get some help. Work one-on-one with someone to help you work through and heal yourself.
- Free yourself.
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