These are boundaries Becky shared with me in mid-July 2014. I appreciated these boundaries and plan to review them frequently in my recovery.
If Nate feels triggered by feelings of lust or has a slip, I need him to tell me about it within the day (perhaps at our nightly AEIOUY discussion). If he fails to disclose the trigger or slip, then he will need to stay in the guest room for a night.
If Nate picks up one of his “weapons of war”, such as Facebook, Twitter, staying up late after I have gone to bed, excessive phone use, he needs to tell me about it and discuss what happened within the day (perhaps at our nightly AEIOUY discussion). If he fails to disclose what has happened or why he picked up the weapon, then he will need to stay in the guest room for a night.
If Nate is exhibiting addictive behaviors such as anger, irritability, blame, stonewalling, defensiveness, selfishness, etc., then I will detach from the situation and write a letter explaining what behavior I am seeing, and why it is triggering feelings of fear for me. I will give Nate the letter, and we can discuss it at an appropriate time. If the discussion goes well, then we will both come to a place of greater trust and understanding. If the discussion does not go well, then we will probably both need some space to reflect on the status of our own perceptions and our own relationship, and he will sleep in the guest room until we can resolve the feelings/behaviors that are occurring.
If Nate is consistently exhibiting addictive behaviors such as anger, irritability, blame, stonewalling, defensiveness, selfishness, etc., without being willing to admit these behaviors or address their cause, then I will ask him to remove himself from our home during the work day, sleep in the guest room at night, and commit to begin seeing a counselor weekly.
If Nate begins habitually acting out with pornography, Facebook, or any of his other weapons of war, or habitually exhibits addictive behaviors which create a contentious and toxic atmosphere in our home, then we will separate.
If Nate has an extramarital affair of any kind (this would include a pattern of texting, instant messaging, communicating on Facebook) on any level (even if it has not reached a level of a sexual nature yet), then we will begin mediation for divorce.
Obviously, the inherent consequence of any of these actions will be to further damage the already obliterated trust in him as a person, as well as between us in our relationship, and further prolong the healing of our relationship and decrease the likelihood of our marriage being able to move forward.
–These are things Nate can do to help increase the feelings of safety and security in our home and relationship, and help rebuild my trust in him as a person of integrity and hope in our relationship
If Nate shows commitment to his own personal recovery by:
– proactively attending 12 Step Meetings
– personally working the program consistently with a sponsor
– initiating our couple scripture study
– initiating full disclosure and ongoing check-ins with the Bishop, and AEIOUY nightly discussions it will help me to believe that his heart is in recovery, and he is not just “going through the motions.”
If Nate continues to be patient with me and my recovery, to seek the Spirit to listen to me and guide me to answers I need, to take accountability for the pain and fear he has brought into my life, and to show remorse for the way he has broken my heart, it will help me to be able to believe that he could truly love me.
If Nate shows consistency in his ability to have patience and love for our children (particularly Caleb), it will help me believe that his continued efforts for repentance and consistency in keeping the commandments are allowing the Spirit to return to his life and change his heart.
If Nate can continue to bridle his passions and keep them “within the bounds the Lord has set,” if he can establish a new way of thinking where his sexual needs are not the predominant force in his life and the predominant demand and problem in our relationship, then it will help me to trust that the Spirit is helping him to come to a place of righteousness and selflessness, and that we can build a healthy relationship that I can trust.
If Nate can continue to fulfill his role as husband, father, and protector without feelings of resentment or feeling that he is underappreciated or not getting enough recognition, but rather with a sense of gratitude to have the honor of filling that role in this eternal family, it will help me trust in his ability to be a righteous patriarch in our home, and that our family has a good chance to grow and learn together in the protection of the Lord, and that Nate will honor his stewardship, protect us, and lead us back to Father.
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