Respecting Others’ Boundaries

Parents teach their children respect for other people’s boundaries. They do, not just in words or actions.

Children need to learn several things to get along with others. And this is work cut out for parents!

Here are some from the book “Boundaries with Kids,” authored by psychologists Drs. Henry Cloud and John Townsend:

1. To be not hurtful to others;

2. To respect the “No” of others without punishing or harming them;

3. To respect boundaries and limits in general;

4. To relish others’ separateness;

5. To feel sad instead of mad when others’ boundaries prevent them from getting what they want.

It’s good lessons: don’t harm others, don’t violate others’ boundaries, don’t punish their No.

A mother tells this to his pre-teen boy treating her with disregard:

“Rob, I asked you not to speak to me in that way again. I don’t like to listen to talk like that because it hurts my feelings. So you can go to your room and think about a better way to talk to me. Until you stop the bad language, I don’t want to talk to you or support you.”

A pretty calm way for a mother to teach his kid proper boundaries. She made it clear that she will not subject her self to abuse. 

And she teaches her kid that his behavior hurts others. Then, the mother connects the trespass to a consequence: a loss of time and support from her.