6 thoughts on “Toxic Behaviors: 12 Examples of Unhealthy Boundaries

  • August 30, 2018 at 10:41 am

    Nice, a more nuanced description of the narcissist and their awful, awful ways. The behaviors you describe is why I refused to work in corporate America and instead in social work/child & family. I can’t imagine working at a law firm and putting up with this everyday, never able to set my armor aside. Even at more altruistic companies, like Patagonia, there’s always one or two, and they are always interested in becoming supervisors in order to gain more control and supply. In relationships I got lucky; there was one I almost married and had kids with but thankfully the mask finally dissipated and the real person came out. I think her name was Medusa. Now that I know the sigs and what to look out for I feel safe to date again–remember, if it’s too good to be true then it probably is (e.g. he/she is pedestals you–love bombing–is uncannily adventurous, charming, attentive, attractive etc.). We are all “leaky containers” and as they say, “the body never lies,” and so the truth will seep (or pour) out eventually in the form of rage at your refusal to worship them in some way. The last one, after our second date, and after a few beers, with horrible boundaries, engaged a couple sitting next to us in order to blatantly criticize me, revealing personal information etc. The couple was understandably confused and looking at me to “please do something.” I knew better, as long ago I’ve ceased rescuing or caretaking the thoughts, feelings and actions of others–that crap is what made me a vulnerable target for them in the first place! I paid for my drink and left. A colleague of mine once said he read a study which revealed over fifty percent of people in the online dating world have a personality disorder. Don’t know if this is true, but, you know, be careful and mindfully cultivate a sense of “healthy paranoia” if you decide to date using the platforms.

    Manipulations often boil down to the usual suspects: stonewalling, gaslighting, guilt-tripping, subtle forms of criticism and passive aggressive techniques like sarcasm. They say NPD is about 1-3% of the population. But I don’t know man, I just don’t know.

    • September 3, 2018 at 10:25 pm

      Hi Eric,
      Thank you for your comment. And thanks for sharing your story.
      Refusal to work in corporate America is often a good choice! I have quite a few colleagues and friends who have attempted to do that and let me just say…their anxiety went up a million notches. To be honest, it was a terrible experience for them.
      I must say, however, that there are certainly narcissists and toxic people in every area of life, even my field! In fact, toxic people may be attracted to psychotherapy as an occupation because they believe they can “help” others.
      It’s complicated, so I definitely agree with you.

  • August 31, 2018 at 7:38 pm

    Hi Tamara,
    Another great topic/article. Unfortunately, I’ve experienced several people who have violated boundaries in some of the ways mentioned in your article and I’m sure on occasion, I have been guilty myself–but at least, once I realized I was pushing a boundary without intending to, I would apologize and gain awareness of it. As you know, that isn’t always the case!
    One thing that has surprised me very recently is that some people really have no clue with regard to boundaries. I experienced this several times lately on the city bus. You wouldn’t BELIEVE some of the loud conversations on personal topics people have on their cell phones while on the bus or even with the person next to or across from them.
    Today in fact, one guy was on his phone talking about how he “just got out of jail the other day for d.v. and now I gotta go through some anger management bullcrap!” And the other day, a young woman was telling her friend who was sitting next to her about how it was so hot in her apartment the other night that she “had to strip down to nothin’ but then of course, Ty wanted to get it on and I was wanting to sleep but let’s just say he got me in the mood.”
    I was embarrassed for her because a few people kind of gave her a disgusted look but really, I would think she’d have known better! I don’t know, maybe I am showing my age but I just feel there are certain things that are meant to be kept private lol!

    • September 3, 2018 at 10:21 pm

      Hi Lori,
      Thanks so much! I agree. LOL Cell phones are MAJOR boundary violators.
      I agree that there are people who have absolutely no regard for boundaries. Some people do and intentionally push them to see how far they can get. Those people, I consider to be a narcissist. The world revolves around them and your boundaries mean nothing to them. Why should they?

  • September 5, 2018 at 5:34 pm

    Projection is another way people violate boundaries. The projector loudly with pressured speech accuses someone totally innocent of doing that which they themselves are doing to this other person. Any attempt to clarify things results in being buried under an onset of more loud pressured speech. People skilled at this may deftly hook others nearby into their emotions to join in the verbal assault on their target. Our current POTUS seems to engage in all this to some degree.

  • March 7, 2019 at 10:36 am

    If you experience these things in most of your relationships, what does that mean? It’s not a way to live! I’ve experienced this with my family, especially my parents. I experienced this with a man who married me for a green card, no matter that I told him I wanted no part in that in the beginning when getting to know him. He stays in the USA by saying I did everything abusive to him that he was doing to me and worse than what occurred, using VAWA. He expected me to commit suicide also. I’ve also had these things occur at work with a boss and co workers. Now can’t get a job in nursing because I’m terrified of people and no longer do well in interviews .


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