Let's talk about Boundaries

Discussion in 'Rebooting in a Relationship' started by Kenzi, Jun 23, 2017.

  1. HurtbyPA

    HurtbyPA Fapstronaut

    Thank you for that. I try to remind myself when I feel like I can't deal with this anymore. I'm doing better than I could have anticipated and I am grateful that I have the strength to face these issues head on and take appropriate action. Unfortunately my partner doesn't have the same strength, it seems more and more obvious that he is suffering from severe Trauma that he has been bottling up his entire life, that when he does open up about it, it causes physical discomfort (migranes, nausea, stomach burning) and almost uncontrollable negative emotions, mostly anger and severe sadness (he starts crying and clenching his fists and punching furniture). I truly feel that I do not know how to help him, because whenever we have these fights, it goes into a territory that I am not trained to deal with. It feels like I am making things worse for him, making him face these demons. He has lied to me again, he had a relapse where he quickly "glimpsed" at porn and at escort websites, which he uses as "Porn", doesn't actually have an interest in it, he just has the Pornographic fantasy associated with it. But I had asked that he be forthcoming if he does slip up and I told him I won't get mad as long as he is honest. Well, that was asking for too much, and even though I asked him twice, if he had a slip up, or if he feels like he might slip up - he lied and said no. I had a gut feeling yesterday morning and decided to take a look at the computer and came across a very disheartening conversation he had with one of his coke-head co-workers a week or 2 ago where he asked for the drug a few times (didn't get it), and both "joked" about a client that had posted nude photos online as she was a model or whatever, basically objectifying her the way men like this do. He has agreed to going to couples counseling, our first session is Saturday. My trust is now beyond broken, and because of my co-dependancy issues I am terrified of ending the relationship, even though I feel like there is nothing here for me anymore, and I am not at all comfortable with setting boundaries. I don't trust him, I don't want to control him, I want him to just fucking be responsible and honest, but obviously this cannot happen. So I really don't know how to proceed. I just want to be alone. I just want to take care of myself. I feel like I cannot fix him, truly, and I don't want to. I want him to fix himself. I also feel stupid for wasting so much time thinking this relationship was going to last. I don't know how to reconcile all these aspects. I'm hoping therapy will help, I have hope that it will, but I really don't know if I'm willing or capable of sticking it out however long it take - it will take a lifetime....this is never going to go away completely. </3 I do not know how to put that in a perspective of acceptance, it just hurts a lot.
  2. So I’m trying to set boundaries.
    I’m reading others boundaries. They are so incredibly specific. If l have to get so specific...

    I just can’t do this.
    Want. To. Scream.
  3. Just breathe. (screaming is fine too)

    Establish boundaries that make sense for you and your husband and your family situation.

    The main goal of boundaries, in my opinion, is to establish a safe zone for you...whether that is space for you to process and heal; or boundaries to define how your husband handles himself in his recovery process; or whatever applies to you and your unique situation. ( every PA and SO is in a different, unique scenario )
  4. @TryingHard2Change

    Only ones I can come up with that seem fitting. Are that of separation. I never thought I’d really get here. I can’t believe this.


    Do not touch me ever. Consequence-I’ll go stay at hotel.

    Do not stand too close.

    Consequence- I’ll hit you.

    You sleep on the couch. We will switch some nights when I need a break from baby Consequence- I’ll go to a hotel.

    Move your things to Guest bathroom. Consequence-I’ll throw away your things.

    Change your clothes with a door closed

    Only talk about child related things or home or very necessary information.

    Be home on weekends.

    Be home on time do not let me wonder where you are or when you’re coming home. Consequence. We won’t be home when you get there.

    Do your own laundry.

    Consequence you’ll have no clean laundry.

    Agree to some time one weekends that you stay home with the kids while I go out.
    TryingHard2Change likes this.
  5. @spouseshmouse: who is your husband on NoFap? ... I know he is super busy with finishing a project at work...but is he on NoFap? Has he started to look around, read, start a journal, etc.??
  6. @TryingHard2Change

    Guitar playa is his name. He got a name and has read the information section about the website. I do t think he has done anything else.
  7. Kenzi

    Kenzi Fapstronaut

    Part of why we failed the first time around, I think...
    Is because our Boundaries were "meet in the middle"
    It wasn't "he has to come home because he broke us"

    For those who start this journey and think they don't need hard boundaries, or any boundaries or that a addict can police or parent or grow up or cure himself.... Here is what I have humbly learned since I started this thread.

    Without a hospital, a sick person will never be well.
    Without a parent, a child never grows up.
    Without the police, a criminal never stops breaking the law.
    So.... Without boundaries... A addict is never going to stop hurting his spouse or his family.
    Why would they?
    They 'like' their life.
    They are comfortable in the addiction and the cycle of shame.
    They may not like the discomfort, but that's the routine. Its what they know.
    And then... You get a nice 'dry drunk' PA.
    And that can go on for Years.

    I originally wanted to be a equal to my partner when we started this....
    You can't be equal when you were already under their feet anyways.
    The point of the boundaries and consequences is to be treated with respect again and they will Never respect you (hence these are not punishments) if they can't treat you like a person again.
    This takes a long time to rebuild, as the simplest, littlest things that basic human considerations that seem like "too much" or "overzealous requests" anymore are lost in trying to preserve addict pride.

    To build trust, trust has to be earned.
    This is a one way task.
    Trust is only ever broken in one direction.
    It is only ever earned back in one direction.
    Even if one person was in retaliation because of something that this person started... It still wouldnt have happened if the first hadn't started it.
    Trust is only ever broken one way first.
    It's never a simultaneous thing.
    So it's not arguable which way it needs to be repaired.

    If you don't want to listen to the rules..
    If you don't want to repair... Then don't.
    But that's entirely different.

    A relationship isn't 50%-50%... It's 100%-100%. If each person only puts in 50%, you are only half in your relationship and half out the door already and that's bullshit.
    Each person should put in 100%.
    it should be 100% & 100%.
    The boundaries are a attempt to make that balance happen after its shown that one person hasn't been pulling their weight.

    If they aren't done right...
    You will always feel the unbalance.
    You can do a little, or you can do alot.. But they should be done correctly.

    I hope everyone who continues to come to this thread, has successful reboots and relationships.
    Blessed Be.
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2018
  8. HurtbyPA

    HurtbyPA Fapstronaut

    This is soooo true! Everyone always says it's supposed to be 50/50, but that's exactly why that doesn't work! Thank you for sharing your wisdom!
  9. Salt & Light

    Salt & Light Fapstronaut

    Whole post; fantastic! Very well said :)
  10. Anna5

    Anna5 Fapstronaut

    Hi! I’m new here. I previously posted on rebooting in a relationship and was redirected here & given resources for boundaries and consequences.

    Quick background: both me and my bf of 4 years thought PMO was pretty normal until I watched “the great porn experiment”. There had been a little friction about me trying to quit and him not trying as hard as me (a year ago).

    After posting on these forums I was able to talk to him about the seriousness of his PMO in our relationship especially while I am trying to get better. So, in a way, I completely understand his addiction which is kind of good, but am simultaneously very hurt by it. (Confusing to say the least). I said basically we can a.) do nothing about this and I will become a shell of a person in a few years if we even make it that long, b.) break up, if this journey is too hard for us both to go on or c.) we can fight for it. He emphatically voted c.

    He came up with a few ideas for us to start overcoming our addictions. 1. We shower with the door open. 2. We make some sort of monetary reward/punishment.

    I was floored by his complete honesty and determination. And I also know it’s only been two days.

    Should I make a list of boundaries & consequences? How do I even start?
    Deleted Account likes this.
  11. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut

    Hi @Anna5

    I found this very helpful when I set up my Boundaries & Consequences.

    It's something that @GhostWriter shared (I hope you don't mind me reposting it GW!)

    Also, there is heaps of great suggestions and ideas if you read through all the pages of this thread as well.... :)

    Start HERE:

    Boundaries & Consequences (A Primer)

    1. Keep your Boundaries to a half dozen or so. Your SO can make some too, but no more than a dozen total and preferably equal between you.

    2. Boundaries should always be Objective. That is, they must always be defined in such a way that there is absolutely positively no way to misinterpret the boundary or the spirit of the meaning of the boundary. Any subjectivity allows the abuser to create their own interpretation as an excuse to circumvent the boundary.

    3. Be specific and don’t be ridiculous in your expectations.


    1. List at least 3 Consequences for each Boundary, each being more severe than the previous. As an example, If you get your first DUI, you get a stiff fine, loss of license for six months, and DUI school. Your second DUI, you get a much more stiff fine, lose your license for much more than six months, and you get to pick up trash on the side of the highway for a while (because DUI school obviously didn’t do it for you). Your third DUI, gets you a fine that you’re going to have significant difficulty paying, you get some real jail time where you get to go ponder that DUI, and that license? If you ever do get it back, it will be stamped with “Habitual Violator” which means if you so much as have a headlight that doesn’t work, it’s off to jail you go. The point is, each and every infraction results in stiffer sanctions.

    2. Do not issue consequences that are easier for him to accomplish than they are for you to endure. If it creates you undue hardship that makes your life even more miserable than it already is, this isn’t the right consequence for you.


    1. This is important. Whatever you create, create it in writing. Go over each and every boundary and each and every consequence. Ask if your SO has any questions or misunderstandings about the boundary.

    2. Execute the plan without prejudice. If a boundary is violated, the consequence spelled out in the plan is enforced immediately.


    Boundary #1: Don’t you dare lie to me. And don’t you dare make me have to explain to you what a “lie” is.

    Consequence (First): You sleep in another room for 1 week

    Consequence (Second): You sleep in another place for 1 month

    Consequence (Third): You sleep in another place for six months

    Since I use the three strikes rule, You get three strikes, and thereafter, you’re done. But don’t utilize my rule. This is just an example of how it works.

    NOTE: If you spell out a boundary whose consequence is “we’re through”, then you damn well better be prepared to be through. If you aren’t or can’t, then don’t. You may modify your boundaries at any time. As he improves and abides by the boundaries, then you can relax them as you feel comfortable. Remember, these are your boundaries for your SO. So you have to decide what you can live with and what you can’t.

    Here’s some ideas:


    and @Kenzi started this excellent thread here:


    Try this, and if you need more help, please reach out.
  12. Salt & Light

    Salt & Light Fapstronaut

    Hello and welcome!

    I started here on Sept 12th but been reading for over a year now :) I'm an SO, been with my BF for 1yr and 9 months.

    This sounds like a good start for both of you, open, honest and communicating.
    We didn't have much of that, you may see that quite a bit on NoFap but it's fantastic you've both chosen option C.
    I would certainly develop a list of boundaries; I've also done mine very recently...last Thursday; as I have recently found this thread also.

    So we're in a similar situation.
    I'm off to work soon but will be back in a couple of hours, I'd like to share some things with you if you need any advice or just a chat :)

    My boundaries, it's suggested you only chose 6 at a time; 1. So you're SO can remember them and 2. They don't become daunting or over whelming I think

    There is clearly more than 6 here; these are just my ideas for now and they will develop and change as our relationship and his addiction changes/progresses.
    • ⦁ No PMO
    • ⦁ No P of any kind, whilst sharing home or otherwise
    • ⦁ No P-subs
    • ⦁ No blaming - please take responsibility
    • ⦁ No lying or 'dodging'
    • ⦁ No erotic texts, books or comics
    • ⦁ No devices of any kind in the toilet
    • ⦁ No opening P/ P-subs in "secret" browsers
    • ⦁ No proxies or VPNs
    • ⦁ No Youtube or Google images/video searches with *certain* words
    • ⦁ No ogling women
    • ⦁ No self hate or pity. Take responsibility for behavior, then move on
    • Do be honest - top of the list
    • Do actions to rebuild trust
    • Do take steps to learn self appreciation and respect (to love yourself)
    • Do educate yourself - read 3x per week, books, NoFap (self help) etc
    • Do set goals and boundaries for yourself
    • Do identify triggers
    • Do learn to cope with compulsions more effectively
    • Do communicate when being asked

    Have a think about your needs, what you require to be part of the relationship with your BF. If you are also suffering as a PA - he could write his own boundaries for you too. Each person in the relationship needs to give 100%.

    At first I felt a little guilty - as if I was commanding my SO, but then I realized. He was bringing something destructive into our relationship, this effected me and us dramatically. I did not ask for it, I'm not responsible for it - as SOs we must take care of ourselves too. This is just the basis of any relationship isn't it...to simply respect each others boundaries as human beings and loved ones.

    If you come up with any questions please post them here and I'll be back soon :) Salt x
    souvlakispacestation likes this.
  13. Katrina Rose

    Katrina Rose Fapstronaut

    Wait.... What kind of apps have secret browsers???!!! Does Ever Accountable track these too?? Now I'm petrified.
    fadedfidelity likes this.
  14. Salt & Light

    Salt & Light Fapstronaut

    . A

    Okay, I'm going to assume you have no idea what I'm talking about so will give detail :) I appreciate this - it's such a pain finding all these loop holes x

    You have a web browser say like Google...then you have Google Chrome, which has an 'incognito option'. When you go into Chrome, you will see the normal web page. At the top right corner there will be a tab, 'three vertical dots' usually - this is where you check history etc. Click that. There will be an option; 'New Incognito Window'

    So, when this is chosen, it looks pretty similar to a normal window; except the 'content searched' will not be stored in the history. If you have parental control on lap top, it will pick up on the search. But if not, then yes a user could be suing a secret browser to hide history. Don't worry though, it's a learning curve...if it's the case it can be remedied.
    This is on Google Chrome, Firefox and others. You can research all the web browsers which have these online - there are a few. Also, it's not always called 'incognito window' as it is for Chrome. For Firefox it could be called 'hidden window' or words to that effect etc.

    Hope this helps x
    Deleted Account likes this.
  15. Salt & Light

    Salt & Light Fapstronaut

    Another quick thought!

    This is not just for your SOs by the way...but if you have children or teens (especially). We need to protect the future!

    Just in case....loop holes and proxies - our parental control picked up on these but watch out for them anyway. Also, if you have parental control, it also good to block 'unknown web pages' to be searched. This is often a separate setting to the 'rules' section where you may block Porn, explicit content, social media etc etc.
    This means the parental control will analyse ALL web pages searched - even if it doesn't recognize it and so on :)

    S&L x
    Deleted Account likes this.
  16. Katrina Rose

    Katrina Rose Fapstronaut

    Oh ok. I know about incognito. And EA monitors that so I'm safe. I thought you meant apps like games or something that also allowed access to it's own web browser.
    Deleted Account likes this.

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