Creating strong boundaries does not make you a “bitch.”
I can’t tell you how many times this missive has been hurled at me when I’ve spoken up, stood up for myself, or changed the dynamic in a relationship.
And I know I’m not alone–one of the most common themes I’ve found through the work that I do is that of the beautiful human being coming into their power and the flack that inevitably follows.
People are threatened by change, by what they can’t predict or control. And if you’re in the midst of a personal revolution, you better believe there’s going to be some pushback–especially if you’ve long been taking a backseat so everyone else can shine.
I never thought I’d be one to fall into this trap, but I did. And setting strong boundaries was what got me out of it.
Once I got married and had my daughter (all within the same calendar year, no less), I was buried under the weight of expectations I never wanted or asked for. Suddenly, I was expected to turn up at every odd family function and to host my own. And I was expected to cook and clean for everyone and to give up my dreams and get practical (because being a mother is all the joy you need, of course). Suddenly, who I was before my daughter seemed to matter little–no one asked about my art or my work or my thoughts. They just asked about how I was adjusting to motherhood and inferred that now I’m a mother, I should surrender my art and the joy it brought me so I could shift my entire focus to building a family.
And everything in my body responded to these expectations with a resounding “Hell no.”
I didn’t care that it would be challenging and that everyone thought I was a fool to keep dreaming. I carved out time for myself to read, to paint, and to practice ritual regardless of whether or not the dishes needed to be done or my child needed tending to. Did I feel guilty? You bet I did–thirty years of conditioning is hard to break, but if I was going to retain who I was and keep my dreams alive, I was going to have to break it.
And break it I did–but not without a fight.
I believe that it’s your goddess-given right to be free to create, to innovate, to dream and to express yourself. But as it is with so many other things, this right often has to be tirelessly advocated and fought for. Sometimes it requires taking a stand and telling others that they’re just going to have to take care of themselves–something I go into in great detail in my latest video. Sometimes it requires you to take a step back so you can reconnect with your passions again. And sometimes it means saying no, even if others don’t want to hear it.
Fighting for your dream is a powerful, self-loving act. It does not make you a “bitch”–it makes you an evolved human being who knows they deserve to be honored and treated with respect.