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Mindful Communication

Setting boundaries and the importance of repair.

Our wonderful daughter had big plans to leave Seattle in a travel van early in August. But she had a lot of unpredictable events occur which has set her back a little in terms of timing. So, she's moved home. It's not easy facing setbacks and moving back in with your parents, I get it! But I'm thrilled to have her home, to hear her come in the door, to chat and just share space.

For her, having so much independence since she graduated from high school, moving home felt like she was sacrificing that independence. During the first two weeks, she was trying to communicate with me that she still wants that sense of independence while living with us. My feelings were hurt as she expressed her needs. I thought to myself "I'm not asking too many questions, I'm not invading your space, I'm not.... doing anything wrong!"

I got a bit stubborn about the whole thing, as sometimes I do....

Here's the beautiful part. After a few days of this back and forth, she initiated a conversation with an intention to repair whatever hurt was present - both for me and for her. She expressed how our relationship was so important AND that she's just trying to figure what life at home looks like for her - how she will navigate this - when.... this wasn't her plan.

I couldn't be more proud of her. I'm proud she's strong enough to set boundaries in and for her life. She also understands the power of repair and how beneficial it is to acknowledge where the hurt is present AND still stand up for herself and what was important to her.

Repair isn't easy. Sometimes we blame, sometimes we want to be right, and sometimes we feel like we aren't treated fairly. When conflict is present, it's important to take time to yourself, and think about what really matters. Do you want to be right? Or is it more important in the relationship to repair with love and compassion - both for yourself and the other.

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