Healthy boundaries are very important in romantic and family relationships if we want everyone to thrive. On the flip side, a lack of boundaries could lead to someone walking all over us and doing us harm (even if they don’t mean to). Now, setting these boundaries up means having some honest heart-to-heart communication when you see someone you love doing something that grates you. These conversations might be tough, but they’re absolutely vital.
Redditor u/FredWalker37 opened up about the intense situation that’s currently going on in his family. A father with a 13-year-old son, he turned to the AITA community for advice about what he should do after he confronted his new wife about how she spoke to his son, who is slightly more on the introverted side. It all culminated with the dad canceling the Mother’s Day celebration they’d all planned.
Scroll down for the full story in u/FredWalker37’s own words, and let us know in the comments what you think about what happened, dear Pandas. If you have any great insights or useful advice on how to proceed, we’re all ears.
A father with a slightly introverted son ended up taking a very firm stand after he overheard what his new wife told his boy
The dad opened up about everything in a very candid post on the AITA subreddit.
Here is his story in full
“Without them [boundaries], we live our lives at the expense of ourselves. The mindset for many when it comes to setting boundaries is that they feel selfish, or that they aren’t being a good partner when they implement them, so they avoid doing it altogether,” Alex told us during an earlier interview.
“This only causes resentment to build and overwhelm to set in both within the individual and the relationship as a whole. Boundaries are there for us to be able to take care of and to protect ourselves so that we can show up and operate within our lives as successfully as possible.”
Meanwhile, very recently, Suzanne Degges-White, a Licensed Counselor, Professor, and Chair at the Department of Counseling and Higher Education at Northern Illinois University, explained to us that introversion isn’t the same as antisocial behavior which, in turn, differs from antisocial personality disorder.
“During the pandemic, people who tend towards introversion were able to grow more comfortable in this identity and were able to disconnect from life’s requirements for ‘extroverting behaviors.’ While many extroverts had to spend more time alone, they didn’t necessarily grow more introverted, but found more ways to connect to others,” Suzanne told Bored Panda about how the pandemic affected people.
“In fact, research indicates that while the isolation offered ‘comfort’ to introverts and may have stressed out the more extroverted, it was actually the extroverts who ended up coping more effectively with the emotional distress of the pandemic. They stayed in contact with their typically larger social networks so they still were engaging socially even though it was done virtually,” the counselor told us.
Introverts, though, while enjoying the ‘lifestyle of their dreams,’ suffered from isolation more acutely because they had smaller social circles to begin with and fewer opportunities to connect with others as well as less skill in doing so due to their introverted patterns,” she said.
“Introverts have interest in connecting and engaging in social relationships whereas antisocial folks tend to just prefer to avoid people at all,” she explained the difference between introverts and antisocial people to us.
“Folks who prefer not to be around people are typically just ‘wired that way,’ and prefer the company of themselves, pets, or simply solitude. While these people are relatively rare in coparison to those who identify as introverts, the pandemic quarantines would have created no stressors whatsoever for those who would be labeled as antisocial,” the professor said.
“Some folks, for whatever reason, don’t want to invest the time or energy into forging a significant number of non-essential social relationships. They are truly okay being the ‘odd person out’ and prefer time alone than time to socialize. Introverts like to have friends, romantic relationships, happy collegial connections with folks on the job, etc. Antisocial folks, though, eschew relationships and engage only when circumstances require it,” she said.