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How To Set Boundaries With Your Girlfriend

In any romantic relationship, we often think of having to set boundaries as a bad thing. Isn’t our partner meant to understand us and our needs? Will setting boundaries kill the romantic side of our relationship?

In romantic relationships boundaries are very important, in fact, they are essential in any healthy relationship. Boundaries come hand in hand with respect. If you want to set boundaries with your girlfriend, here is how…

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#1 Boundaries can be set with grace and gentility

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Be polite, and say please and thank you. You probably will lose friends if you go around making big, obnoxious announcements about how you want to be treated. Instead, set an example by how you treat your friends and girlfriend, and by speaking up at the moment -- saying no, thank you or I'm sorry, I don't really like that when you need to.

Anyone can be subjected to rudeness and inconsideration. How you handle it determines whether you are setting boundaries or not. Most situations can be handled with polite firmness. People pleasers usually just don't know how to say no, thank you and make it stick. If you say no, thank you several times, then, gently tell the person you don't like what they're doing, that it makes you uncomfortable, and they still don't get it, then you need to sit them down and tell them you will not allow them to do that to you.

For example, if your girlfriend borrows money or lets you pay for lunch all the time, you can say, gently, I think it's your turn to buy lunch today or I really need you to pay back the money you borrowed. If that doesn't work, then have a talk -- say, I think you're taking advantage of me financially, and I can't be with you if the situation doesn't improve. So, I'm sorry, but I'm not going to lunch with you any more unless you buy, and/or I'm not lending you any money.

If that doesn't improve matters, then you'll need to give that person a timeout -- withdraw from personal contact, and just be very polite when you do happen to see him or her. He or she will get the message loud and clear. Perhaps your friend will ask Are you mad at me? and then you can describe what the problem is.

Contributors: Tina B. Tessina from TinaTessina

#2 Be honest with yourself, then with her

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This may seem like obvious advice. When was the last time you really stopped to think about your boundaries? The topic may have come up because of your girlfriend’s actions or a situation you were just in. Maybe it made you feel uncomfortable and that’s okay. The important thing now is to understand why it made you feel that way and let her know too.

Be clear about exactly why it made you uncomfortable and what you’re okay with in the future. Giving her this understanding and a clear boundary is far more meaningful and productive than just getting angry. Be as clear and concise as you can be when talking about it. Keep things positive and reassure her that everything is okay now that this boundary is in place.Strong relationships are built on great communication and it all starts with knowing your limits.

Contributors: James Anderson from Beyond Ages

#3 Lead With The Positive!

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A great way to set boundaries with the girlfriend is to lead with the positive! Don't start with, hey babe I want to set boundaries. That is going to give your a personal invitation for a party of 1 in the dog house. 

Instead say how much you would like to create a date night together designated for you and her to get closer and more intimate time, more intimate then spreading halfhearted effort throughout the week. Then you say, that way we can have our time, then I can have time with the guys and my alone time. Whatever boundaries you want to set come right after you prime her for imprinting the boundaries you want to on her. That sounds horrible, but psychologically speaking. Mean it to, don't use this as an excuse. Follow through and make the date day count for all its worth. 

Contributors: Chris Cucchiara from PersonalDevelopFit

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Written by Ben Skute