Setting Boundaries when Dating

Dating boundaries are important because they reflect the kinds of boundaries we have in other parts of our lives. If our boundaries are non-existent in the beginning, it can be challenging to reinstate them later on. 

Dating boundaries can be challenging for anxiously attached people. People raised by a primary caregiver who was emotionally or psychically unavailable, abusive, or neglectful develop an insecure attachment style. One of the insecure attachment styles is ‘anxious attachment.’ This is where you find it difficult to attach to a partner securely. It is difficult to trust they will be there and to maintain boundaries that keep you safe. 

The primary fear is that the attachment figure will abandon you, as the caregiver did as a child in one way or another. To prevent being abandoned, you abandon yourself, and you do whatever the other person wants to maintain the connection and relationship, even if it is abusive. 

If you recognise this pattern, look at my highlights under ‘attachment.’ One way to work with an insecure attachment style is to start working with a therapist. Ultimately all relational wounds require relational healing, and this is most safely done with a trained professional.

You might like to write a list of all the dating boundaries you think are healthy for you and have them somewhere close for when you are dating. If you find yourself bending the rules, get curious, and maybe get some help.

So much love on your healing journey