Updated: Nov 10, 2021
When we hear about setting boundaries, we are often told to clearly state them & everything will be okay, giving the assumption that whoever we are setting boundaries with will be perfectly understanding. But usually if we feel it's necessary to verbally set boundaries with someone, they have already shown toxic/narcissistic traits that have gone way beyond what we find acceptable. The response that follows is usually dismissive & manipulative making us second guess ourselves & our boundaries.
So, what's the next step?
Either we ignore our boundaries & allow the manipulation to continue, or we do something that will show them that boundaries can no longer be broken. The most effective way to do this would be to ghost them (also known as no contact) because if someone is unable to respect you or your boundaries, what are they adding to your life?
What is ghosting?
Ghosting by definition is "the practice of ending a personal relationship with someone by suddenly & without explanation withdrawing from all communication" but it's rare that there was no explanation given, it just may not look like a big neon sign that says "I AM GHOSTING YOU & THIS IS WHY!"
When we're having a conversation about setting boundaries or verbalizing how our feelings have been hurt, the plan isn't to ghost, the plan is to put the relationship on a healthier track. But when boundaries are dismissed, the only other thing to do is go no contact. So the explanation comes far before planning to ghost even happens.
Toxic/Narcissistic people will never admit that they are at fault for anything they've done, so claiming no explanation is a way to get themselves off the hook & put the blame on others.
What is a toxic person?
A toxic person is someone whose behavior brings negativity to your life. This person is usually dealing with their own traumas & stressors that they are unwilling to acknowledge.
Their behavior thrives off of manipulating others, confusing them with their behavior & making others feel bad about who they are.
Keep in mind, we all have the ability to be toxic, which is why we always need to check ourselves & work through our trauma & stressors without lashing out on others.
What is a narcissistic person?
A narcissistic person has no concern outside of their own needs & desires. They often lack empathy, carry themselves with a sense of entitlement & have an extreme need for admiration at all times. They need to be involved in every conversation & always find a way to draw the conversation back to themselves.
While not every narcissistic person has narcissistic personality disorder (NPD). Some do have NPD, which is a disorder in which a person has an inflated sense of self-importance.
When should you set boundaries with someone?
If you're questioning if you should set boundaries or not, you should.
Setting boundaries in any relationship is good, but if a relationship is making you feel drained, bad about yourself or any sort of negativity, you should absolutely set boundaries.
Any healthy relationship will never be strained because of communication, so if you communicating your boundaries causes a problem, you made the right decision & you should maybe rethink that relationship all together.