“The only people who get upset when you set boundaries are the ones who benefited from you having none.”
A Word of Hope
As queer people, we need boundaries more than many straight people do because we are vulnerable to mistreatment and harm they have never even thought of, much less had to defend themselves against. Whether it’s with family members, friends, society at large, or perfect strangers, boundaries keep us safe. Boundaries give us what we need to be healthy, thriving people who can live for more than just ourselves.
This past weekend, I had to tell certain family members of mine that they will not be at our wedding if they believe our relationship is a sin—that’s just not the kind of folks we want at our wedding on that day. It would make us so much more anxious. It would rob us of the celebration. So we set a boundary. And guess what they said. Just guess. They said what people always say when you put up a boundary: they accuse you of doing something wrong. You become the problem when you change the status quo that has always benefited them while harming you.
Our culture at large is full of this false, destructive idea. Protestors at football games are tagged as “divisive” and “stirring up trouble” or “being disrespectful” just like MLK was. The go-to line of the ones benefitting from the status quo will always be to say we are doing something wrong when we push against and boundary that status quo out of our lives.
And here is the good news. I pray it would soak deep into your bones the way I ask Goddess to place it deep into mine: you are doing nothing wrong when you establish a boundary. You are not the problem. You are healing not only yourself but the world when you establish a boundary. You are praying the words with your life, “Your kindom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.” Boundaries are of-God. They give life. The absence of boundaries kills, steals, and destroys.
So hear this good news today: when you set boundaries, you are not the problem. Not. One. Bit. Boundaries are Love.
God of life and love, fill us with truth this day. Set our hearts and minds free of the guilt we feel when we make boundaries. Fill us with the confidence to stand in peace against the anger thrown at us by those who resist our boundaries only because they benefit from the status quo. Mother God, your kindom come, your desire be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Amen.