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Learning How to Set Boundaries

Getting together with friends and family can bring a lot of joy into our lives if we set the correct boundaries. Sometimes having a new baby or even an older child can create anxiety when attending family functions because of unsolicited advice. A recent podcast that I listened to reminded me that it's not only okay to set boundaries with loved ones, but boundaries are healthy for you and the person you are creating a boundary with and actually help people feel safe.

There are a lot of people in the world who have opinions that they like to share. You, though, are the only one who knows yourself and your child and can make decisions about you and them. The sooner that you can learn to set boundaries, the sooner you will be able to sit and enjoy family gatherings without fear or anxiety about what someone might say.


Grandma asks: When are you going to be done breastfeeding, Abby?

Your response: I appreciate you thinking about us, Grandma, but this is something Abby and I will decide together on our own timeline.

Aunt Jo asks: Why don't you just offer her a bottle?

Your response: Breast/chestfeeding is something that is important to our family, and we do not wish to offer her a bottle at this time.

Being clearly and respectfully direct is not being mean. It is respecting yourself and your family's decisions. If the person keeps pressuring or is asking for more information, you can just say that this isn't a topic that I will be discussing with you as our family has made our decisions. Sometimes respecting ourselves may inadvertently hurt someone else's feelings, but those feelings are theirs not yours and are something that they need to sort out.

Check out this fantastic book on boundaries by Melissa Urban as well as the We Can Do Hard Things podcast by Glennon Doyle with an interview with Melissa Urban. I know you will get a lot from these resource that you can use throughout your life!





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