I wonder how many people with mental illness understand the importance of boundaries? Not only the boundaries set by their supporters and caregivers, but also the boundaries they themselves should put in place in their relationships with those who care for them.

I’ve lived with mental illness for over fifty years and am only now starting to understand the concept of boundaries. Because I didn’t understand, I endured a lot of pain as I overwhelmed someone with my needs, neither of us having put boundaries in place. I believe we both suffered.

The internet is full of advice about the importance of setting boundaries when caring for people with mental illness. But I haven’t seen what should be just as important: the need for the person receiving care to set her own boundaries, the importance of treating others as she wants to be treated, recognizing when she’s not giving her caregivers enough space.

Is that possible? Is it possible for a mentally ill person who’s suffering to see beyond her own needs and recognize the needs of the person who’s caring for her? For many years that was almost impossible for me to do, or to even think about doing.


These are some of the things I’d like to explore in my blog– for myself as well as for others who have trouble understanding boundaries and their importance in maintaining healthy relationships with their supporters.

Over the next while I will explore various thoughts on these issues.

I’m looking forward to learning how I can do better and hope you’ll come along with me.