Why Setting Boundaries Feels Uncomfortable But Is Crucial For Mental Health

This is how I am learning, the hard way

Scarlett Jess Perrodin
Published in
7 min readApr 27, 2021

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Photo by Ben Hershey on Unsplash

“Unhealthy boundaries are often characterized by a weak sense of your own identity and your own feelings of disempowerment in decision making in your own life.” -Stephanie Camins, MA, LPC

I had never felt in control of my own life. In abusive environments, I learned to accommodate everyone else to barter for love, and I became stuck there when I was told that setting boundaries or claiming what was best for me was selfish.

So I sacrificed my identity and removed all boundaries, attempting to avoid rejection, abandonment, and hurtful retaliation.

Feeling responsible for meeting everyone else’s needs prompted me to discard my worth. This also landed me in a long-term abusive relationship where I appeased my ex to wicked extremes, like coddling a leech, and learned to consistently deny my own needs.

In these die-hard efforts, I completely lost my identity.

I never considered whether or not I had healthy boundaries, because I believed that kindness trumped honesty and safety. This was emotional sickness, which made me a target for more suffering, like a moth to a flame.

Patterns emerged, and my own behaviors signaled that something was wrong. Knowing the signs of having poor boundaries could have prompted me to re-evaluate my relationships and my identity.

Here are several signs that indicate a lack of healthy boundaries:

  • Feel like people frequently take advantage of you for their own gain.
  • Feel like you’re constantly needing to “save” others close to you or fix their problems.
  • You don’t typically speak up even when treated badly.
  • Feel responsible for other people’s behaviors and feelings.
  • Prone to making sacrifices for other people at your own expense.
  • Feel guilty when doing something, or anything, for yourself.
  • One to discuss how much you hate drama yet seem stuck in the middle of it more often than not.
  • Tend to feel things are really great or really…

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Scarlett Jess Perrodin
Invisible Illness

Mental health advocate, abuse escape artist, maternal aura, and comic. Personal stories. Some hints of humor. A diamond in the rough is still a diamond.