Why Boundaries Are Important In Marriage
I don’t know if your marriage is anything like mine, but we never talked about boundaries when I first got married. In fact, I didn’t understand the importance of setting boundaries in my marriage and how creating boundaries could lead to a healthy and successful marriage.
My husband and I got married when I was 19, and he was 20. We were young, inexperienced
with no guidance. We struggled for years trying to find the secret sauce to making marriage
work. The one thing that we figured out (years into our marriage) was that we needed to discuss our needs and wants and be clear on our values. We struggled because we didn’t know how to start the conversation or how it would benefit our marriage.
A boundary is a limit. It’s something that you both set together. Some examples of a boundary could be:
Don’t speed while the kids are in the car.
Don’t bring electronic devices to the dinner table.
No discussing work after 5 pm.
Don’t share marital information with friends or family.
Can you relate to these? There are plenty more you can add to your list. So the question then becomes how you set boundaries in your marriage, especially when you don’t know how your husband will respond. Below are a few ways that helped me.
1. Understand your own values, needs, and wants.
Before you can have a conversation with your husband, you first must understand what you want, tolerate, and accept.
2. Communicate and agree to the boundaries.
a. Before having a conversation with your husband, give him the heads up. Let him
know a few days in advance that you would like to have a conversation about
boundaries. Explain to him that it’s a discussion to communicate needs and
wants and ensure you both are on the same page. Make sure that he brings his
values, needs, and wants to the conversation.
b. Before approaching your husband about this, because I use prayer as a guide, I
would pray about it. Prayer that God will give you the words to say and a tone
that makes your husband wants to listen. Pray that God would open his heart to
receive and be open to this conversation. I always like to ask God to step into my
3. Talk about consequences.
This sounds harsh, but there needs to be some accountability. It can lead to frustration and stress if you don’t discuss what happens if
the boundaries are crossed.
a. If boundaries are crossed: acknowledge, discuss and find a resolution. If you can’t
find a resolution on your own, seek professional help.
4. Remember, no one is perfect.
Give yourself and your husband grace during this process. Find what works for you and your marriage. Boundaries help define what you both are comfortable what’s important to you and your marriage. It’s never about attacking your spouse.