Tag Archives: doormat

Boundaries Are Good For Everyone!

Dysfunctional people, especially narcissists, often believe that giving someone everything they want & doing anything they want is what it means to love & honor someone. They even claim it’s not Godly to say no.

This couldn’t be more wrong though!

Romans 15:2 in the Amplified Bible says, “Let each one of us [make it a practice to] please his neighbor for his good, to build him up spiritually..”

Did you notice what that verse says?  It says we should please our neighbor “for his good.”  That alone proves that not everything that can be done for someone is for their own good.  But, even if you don’t believe the Scripture, simply observing those who have gotten their way about nearly everything shows you that isn’t good.  People who are very accustomed to getting their own way are very arrogant & entitled.  They can be extremely demanding of others & have virtually no respect for the time & needs of others.  Worst of all, they also can be narcissists.  It’s very good for people not to get their own way all of the time. 

It’s also good for people not to do for others all of the time, because those who are catered to will come to expect that.  They can become very entitled & demanding rather than appreciating all someone does for them or returning the favor.

For victims of narcissistic abuse, saying no creates a great deal of shame.  Narcissists train their victims to do whatever they want with no regard to the victim’s own needs, wants or feelings. They also make sure their victims know how selfish & terrible they are if they consider their needs, wants or feelings rather than only the narcissist’s.  After being berated for being so terrible enough times, any normal person in this situation learns to avoid having any boundaries, & simply do whatever the narcissist wants in order to avoid trouble.  It seems to be the easier alternative to being shamed for having boundaries.  

After years or even a lifetime of being forced to go along with whatever the narcissist wants, setting boundaries seems almost impossible, & I don’t mean only with the narcissist.  It can seem impossible to have boundaries with anyone.  It can be done though!

As always, I recommend starting with prayer.  Ask God to help you learn how to set & enforce healthy boundaries.  Ask Him for strength & wisdom & anything else you need in this area.

Start small.  Don’t be available every single time someone wants to speak to you.  Let the phone ring sometimes.  Don’t answer that email or text immediately.  If you must get together with someone, suggest a different time or even day than they want.  These tiny steps can help you to gain confidence & set bigger boundaries. 

Remind yourself often that it isn’t your job to please other people.  It is your job to please other people according to what is good for them, according to Romans 15:2.  Sometimes what is good for someone is doing things for them & being a blessing, but other times what is good for someone is saying no or forcing them to handle something without your assistance.

Don’t let other people make you feel as if you’re a terrible person for having boundaries & telling them “no” sometimes!  That is certainly NOT the case!

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Filed under Abuse and the Healing Journey, Christian Topics and Prayers, Mental Health, Narcissism

Are You A Doormat?

Growing up with a narcissistic parent often means being a doormat when you grow up.  People seem to have no problem mistreating or abusing you, & are surprised if you don’t tolerate it.  It’s very strange, as it seems like they sense that you have been used & abused, & believe it is perfectly acceptable to treat you that way.

Some signs you are a doormat are:

  • Accepting blame for things that aren’t your fault.
  • Apologizing for things that aren’t your fault.
  • Accepting the unacceptable from others or even justifying their bad behavior.
  • Accepting responsibility for others’ moods.
  • Feeling invisible.
  • Avoiding confrontation.
  • Constant fear of hurting others’ feelings even when your have been wronged.
  • Ignoring your own feelings to accommodate others.

If this describes you, you are not alone!  In fact, I believe most adult children of narcissistic parents are this way.

How do you stop being a doormat?  First, learn all you can about boundaries.  You need to know what is & is not your responsibility, so you stop accepting too much responsibility. It is not only beneficial for you, but for others as well.  It truly doesn’t help others to be constantly rescued or coddled.  Certainly, occasionally, we all need those things, but they should not be a way of life.

Also, focus on your own emotional healing & mental health. The healthier you are, the less likely others are to use you.  They will know you aren’t easy to manipulate.  Plus you will recognize their attempts to mistreat you, & not permit it to happen by enforcing your healthy boundaries.

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Filed under Abuse and the Healing Journey, Mental Health, Narcissism