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Setting Boundaries In The Helping Profession: Part 2

il_570xN.513916752_lne6I recently posted part 1 of this topic as I decided to share some information I presented to a small group.  As we continue the discussion, we explore enabling and the benefits of setting boundaries.

Am I an Enabler?

Ask yourself a few questions:

  • Do you do things for another person that they are capable of doing for themselves?
  • Do you worry that you are not “doing enough” to help the person?
  • Do you feel like you are the only one that looks out for this person?
  • Do you think no one else understands the person like you do?
  • Do you feel this person is manipulating you?
  • Are you afraid that this person cannot handle a situation without falling apart?
  • Are you protective of this person?
  • Do you wish you can make yourself more available to this person?

Examples of Enabling Behavior

  • Ignore problems
  • Try to soften consequences of bad behavior
  • Make excuses for the behavior
  • Rationalizing behavior
  • You do anything you can to keep peace
  • Continue giving them “another chance”
  • Calling in sick for someone else
  • Offering to pay bills
  • Not getting help for ourselves

Benefits of Setting Boundaries

  • You can contribute to another person’s well being
  • Increase feelings of self worth and self respect
  • Gain respect
  • Healthy assertiveness
  • Healthy communication

Examples of Boundaries

  • “If you continue to repeat the behavior, I will have to terminate services.”
  • “I cannot take up your shift for a third time so that you can go out to drink”
  • “If you keep coming in after we locked the doors, then your privileges will be restricted.”
  • “I can’t allow you to keep borrowing my car because you never fill up the tank.”

I hope this information has been helpful in your own personal journey of boundary-setting

What have you learned about boundary setting?

Photo credit to SplashOfPhotography on Etsy
Setting Boundaries In The Helping Profession: Part 2

Karisse Callender, MS, SAC, LPC

Karisse Callender, MS, SAC, LPC, is a native of the Caribbean, living in the Midwest. She obtained her Master of Science degree in Mental Health Counseling with a concentration in Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse and is a licensed Substance Abuse Counselor (SAC) and Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC). She does individual and group therapy with a Not-for-Profit Agency where she incorporates various treatment modalities to aide in client care. She has a special interest in relapse prevention, integrated treatment, counselor and client wellness and dual diagnosis. She enjoys reading, crafting, baking, socializing with friends and trying out different brands of tea. Lessons From the Couch was created out of her experiences on her new journey as a professional. This blog is about the process of seeing things unfold with clients who have mental health and addiction concerns and her keen interest in self care. Feel free to contact Karisse at: Follow her on Twitter: @lessonsbykc

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APA Reference
Callender, K. (2014). Setting Boundaries In The Helping Profession: Part 2. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 26, 2020, from


Last updated: 29 May 2014
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