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Questions tagged [boundaries]

This tag should be used when boundaries (either yours or someone else's) play a major role in the situation at hand. This could involve questions about how to respect other people's boundaries, how to handle overstepping someone's boundaries, establishing your own boundaries, or handling someone who has overstepped your boundaries.

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139
votes
11answers
56k views

How to tell girlfriend I don't want to meet without hurting her feelings?

My girlfriend and I have "fixed" days we see each other, because we normally don't have time on other days. Sometimes, it happens that her training gets cancelled and she has time that evening and ...
134
votes
17answers
37k views

How do I deal with a coworker who unplugs my monitor because I didn't turn it off?

Background: I have a coworker - let's call her Anne - who believes that saving energy wherever possible is everyone's most important responsibility. Anne has made that clear from the day that I joined ...
132
votes
7answers
32k views

Girlfriend's nosy mother keeps expressing that she'll show up unannounced

Some context: my girlfriend and I have been dating for a year, and we've decided to move in together now that she has graduated and found a job in her chosen career. We're both financially ...
122
votes
10answers
28k views

I live in a desirable, world-famous vacation spot. How do I handle visiting friends and set healthy boundaries?

I currently live in a desirable locale which is a world-famous vacation spot. Suddenly, I have a lot of friends and they want to visit me. I don't want to be rude but I have a few issues: For them, ...
120
votes
12answers
26k views

How do I tell a co-worker that just because something is a hobby doesn't mean I want to do it for free?

I enjoy baking, and on a number of occasions have baked cakes or other desserts for people in the office to celebrate their birthday or a work-related milestone. I've done this of my own accord, ...
118
votes
15answers
55k views

Partner reading my phone messages [closed]

My girlfriend and I are 27-28 years of age. Recently I have caught her going through my phone when I am out of the room and read my text messages, e-mails, Facebook..., checking who I was interacting ...
94
votes
5answers
20k views

How to talk to a one night stand about her potential breast lumps issues?

I'm Brazilian, 23, and I went on a date with a Tinder match yesterday afternoon. At some point things got more intense and as I was fondling her breasts I felt two big lumps on her left one. We've ...
83
votes
14answers
37k views

How do I politely explain to my neighbour that I don't feel comfortable being alone with her in her house while my kids play?

We recently moved into a new neighborhood, as did our neighbor, Jane. I have two young girls (4 and 5), and Jane has a boy and girl (7 I think?). My kids love to play with them, and her kids seem to ...
83
votes
10answers
27k views

How do I gently reject an indecent proposal?

Background People: Bob, John and Alice are old acquaintances of mine. They are a little older than me, mid-to-late twenties. We are not close friends, but we get along together well and see each ...
82
votes
14answers
31k views

How to enforce a “No Shoes” policy in my apartment?

I like to keep my apartment floor clean, as I enjoy walking around with bare feet after a shower without having to worry about them becoming dirty. As such, I don't like shoes beyond the doorway in my ...
68
votes
10answers
21k views

How can I know whether a female house guest is interested in more than a friendly visit?

We have met around 4 months ago, we both are from the same country and are on an internship abroad. She lives quite far from me (around 400 km). We have chatted a bit since we've met and our ...
68
votes
6answers
34k views

How to handle my girlfriend finding out about my second apartment? [closed]

I love my girlfriend but my need for alone time to focus on my interests exceeds most individuals. We moved in together about 18 months ago (she moved across the country with me when I had a job ...
61
votes
15answers
42k views

How to let people know I don't appreciate being ignored in instant messaging?

When talking with people through instant messenger or texting, I find it rude when someone doesn't reply. The other day I had met up with someone I knew from school. He told me about a business idea ...
59
votes
15answers
26k views

How to stop people from touching me without having to freak out at them

I have a problem that I haven't been able to find an amicable solution to so far. I really don't like being touched, to the point where if someone is touching me unexpectedly I get confusion rising to ...
58
votes
7answers
22k views

How to ask for a wish from a woman?

For context, I am a twenty-four-year-old man. Recently I made the acquaintance of a woman who is twelve years older than myself. I was instantly struck by her extreme beauty and made efforts to form a ...
58
votes
17answers
22k views

Answer to: “Why aren't you with your boyfriend right now?”

I have a boyfriend, but still live with my parents and siblings. We've been dating for 8 months. It seems that every time I have a spare moment with my significant other (SO) not present, someone's ...
54
votes
12answers
24k views

How should my wife handle an engaged admirer and his fiancee?

My wife is currently attending university (final year) and, over the course of our 8 year relationship, she has inadvertently drawn the attention of a number of individuals who seek a relationship ...
52
votes
3answers
9k views

How to decline physical affection from a child whose parents are pressuring them?

My Situation I am an uncle to 6 nieces and nephews. I live about 1000 miles away from the rest of my family, so I only see them 2-3 times each year. When it comes time to say goodbye, it is common ...
45
votes
14answers
13k views

How can I address a man talking inappropriately about women? [duplicate]

Source is this twitter thread: https://twitter.com/MalwareJake/status/976848126987374593 Excerpt: She said that the guy who appeared to be the unofficial group leader started talking about one of ...
44
votes
14answers
17k views

How can I deny a request from the mother of my girlfriend to tag along on our road trip?

Background My girlfriend and I are going on a holiday in her native country, about 800km from our current city. We planned this holiday months ago and we planned to stay for 2 weeks. Problem Today ...
44
votes
6answers
6k views

How can I convince my parents to respect my privacy?

I am a 14-year-old Egyptian Muslim currently living with my parents. When I try to keep my room's door closed, my parents are always like "Why close it?" and when I reply "I want some privacy" they ...
43
votes
5answers
19k views

How to handle my girlfriend's parents' attitude to asking her for money?

I'm asking this question on behalf of my girlfriend because she's asking me for help but I'm not sure on how to handle this situation. A little bit of background: My girlfriend's parents moved from ...
41
votes
17answers
20k views

How can I tell my boyfriend “I told you so” without sounding too full of myself?

What I'm about to describe is in relation to this How can I tell a friend they need to help with what they promised because what they promised can't wait? My boyfriend and I decided to help out ...
40
votes
9answers
19k views

How to negotiate with landlady in a shared home who flat out says “no”?

I moved into a shared home with roommates. The landlady and her husband are two of the roommates. I've been having issues with storage space. Today she was cleaning up and she was about to throw out (...
39
votes
6answers
14k views

Childhood friend wants to get a “best friends” tattoo but I do not think it is a good idea

Background I have a friend, we'll call her A, who I have known for nearly 20 years now. We are both in our early 20s now. Due to transitions we have both experienced over the last several years, ...
39
votes
4answers
17k views

How can I get my friend to stop calling me every day? [duplicate]

I have a close friend who I have been very supportive of each-other and it's been a relatively decent friendship but lately it's gotten out of hand. My friend calls me 3 to 4 times a day and texts me ...
39
votes
5answers
14k views

How do I reject helping my neighbour who constantly asks me for little favours?

My neighbour is constantly asking me for little favours, which is super obnoxious. She regularly asks me to maintain her smartphone as she has no clue what to do with a smartphone and keeps ...
38
votes
7answers
7k views

How to deal with an annoying front passenger?

Background Don't be surprised at the use of the plural here. I'm talking about two different people displaying the same behaviour and sharing other characteristics. However, each time only one of ...
35
votes
4answers
7k views

How can I tell my husband I need time for myself without work?

I studied Computer Science and now work full-time as a developer. When I come home from work, I want to spend some time with my husband and the kid until bed time, and then play video games or crochet ...
34
votes
11answers
11k views

How can I politely tell my fellow tenants that I am not the caretaker?

I have 3 fellow tenants in the same building where I live. Every Monday evening, the refuse bins must be put out in the street so that the next morning the company could collect the garbage and empty ...
33
votes
12answers
16k views

How to handle unwanted touching from my partner's friend during conversations?

My partner recently reunited with a friend "Bob" from high school, who has also recently been divorced from his wife of 25 years. He has been visiting us quite often lately and we do enjoy having him ...
33
votes
15answers
13k views

Dealing with a friend trying to get me a girlfriend

TL;DR: Bruce is pushing for me to enter a relationship with Mary, and I like Mary, but don't want any relationship right now, and I want him to back off. The People Me: I am not interested in a ...
31
votes
7answers
12k views

How to make someone respect your time when making plans without being rude?

Ok, here is my situation. I met this guy a few months ago, we met a couple of times (not dating, just as friends). We don't talk often but every once in a month or two he suggests that we would get ...
30
votes
5answers
6k views

How to communicate to coworkers that I am not comfortable with celebratory hugs

I have three coworkers that I work with directly (one being the manager of our "pod"). As a team we generally work on weekly goals with a meeting at the end of the week to go over accomplishments and ...
30
votes
10answers
12k views

How do I address my mother's concerns about my boyfriend's smoking?

My boyfriend smokes tobacco. (Once in a while, he might roll a joint. It helps him relax. I don't mind it because it's not on a daily basis). Both my mother and his parents know about it. I actually ...
28
votes
4answers
6k views

How to handle leadership saying, “we have been over this”

I am a contractor (software development) that is currently in contract with a small business--about 6 employees. There is one project manager and one owner of the business. Both of those people seem ...
28
votes
6answers
15k views

How should I respond to someone cleaning my house without me asking?

So I asked a family member to nip to my house to get something while I was at work and when I got home they had thoroughly cleaned most of my house except for the bedrooms. I don't mean they quickly ...
25
votes
8answers
4k views

How should I handle the “loudest” voice in a group project? [closed]

I am in a Software Engineering class in college. Person A likes to be the voice of everyone. For example, I would ask "What do you think of this?" And without any discussion and a very immediate ...
23
votes
7answers
8k views

How can I tell someone that their teasing is hurting my feelings?

There are times and situations that teasing someone can create a bond of friendship and that the bond created is a result of a well-meaning intention to prepare a person for what they might encounter ...
23
votes
4answers
3k views

How to ask for personal space from a new friend without hurting their feelings?

Sometimes you make a new friend who has more free time on hand than you, so the other person will expect more time from your side so asking for more space might be considered as rude or showing fake ...
22
votes
6answers
9k views

How to ask someone on a date when dating isn't usual in your culture?

Background One similar question is How to clearly communicate that you're asking someone on a date?, but here my situation is noticeably different. I am from India and many girls don't even ...
22
votes
6answers
4k views

How to deal with unruly children that aren't yours?

I'm a 21 year old college student living with my girlfriend, her mother, and her mother's boyfriend. We've lived here, on and off, between my house and hers for the past 5 years. I don't consider this ...
21
votes
6answers
10k views

How to politely communicate to your manager that what they did upset you and ask that it doesn't happen again?

Related How to communicate to someone at work that they are overstepping boundaries. This happened recently to a girlfriend, Mary, at work. Mary works as a cashier for a large department store that ...
21
votes
7answers
8k views

How can I initiate a talk of money with my friend about his business idea?

This is kind of a follow up to How to decline additional help when friend won't take no for an answer My friend has a business idea that he wants me to build an app for. I'm still deciding my ...
20
votes
5answers
4k views

How to convey who will be asked to join my wife and me in the delivery room without causing offense?

My wife and I have just started trying to expand our family. Last night, the topic randomly came up of who should be in the delivery room with us (if we are lucky enough to conceive) as my wife asked ...
19
votes
6answers
7k views

Dealing with a wait-and-see situation when you have a time constraint

Short Version: I have a budding friendship with a coworker, but recently said something incredibly stupid that has left them feeling justifiably hurt. While I think it would be best to give them ...
19
votes
2answers
907 views

How do you show concern or kindness to a stranger without being intrusive?

I was on the train and a young woman, who was a stranger to me, was sitting in the seat across the aisle from me. She was clearly in distress, and periodically would begin to cry. In such a case how ...
17
votes
3answers
3k views

My best friend kissed me while I was half asleep. How can I bring this up and set boundaries, without making a big deal about it?

I am a 23-year-old woman and have been going through depression due to several life situations. I have a guy best friend (engaged) whom I am very close to. He has been acting as my support system to ...
17
votes
5answers
3k views

How to politely convey that you don't want to be tagged in irrelevant social media posts?

Some people have the habit of mass-tagging people on irrelevant posts. Mostly they don't have bad intentions but it's really noisy and I would like it stopped. How to tell these people not to tag me ...
17
votes
2answers
1k views

Helping a child enforce boundaries with strangers

I have a four-year-old granddaughter with beautiful curly hair. I had put it in braids and was in the store with her, and an older man came up and flipped the braids, commenting on her hair. I just ...