Question is about loving people and accepting them as they are and creating boundaries. I have people in my life that I have worked on loving and accepting as they are.
1. Friend- we have had a very rocky relationship and went for years without talking. Now that we are talking and hanging out, I am choosing to just love her as she is and working on not judging her. I love hiking with her, but she cancels quite a bit. I am finding myself not getting upset and saying, that’s just what she does and creating plan B and just doing plan B when she cancels. I have not made any boundaries with her because I really don’t feel there should be one as she always lets me know when she needs to cancel. Should I set a boundary on how often she cancels or just continue to accept that this will happen and have plan B?
2. Brother- I have had a hard relationship with my brother. I have worked on loving him as he is, not judging him and getting over tons of resentment. I am now noticing that he has only been in my life when he needs my help. Last week he reached out to me and asked for my help. I did the model and choose to think ‘he needs me when he wants something and that’s ok’. I chose to help him for no other reason then I love my brother. I noticed that I was able to help him and I never expected anything from him, including a Thank you and was pleasantly surprised when he sent me a text thanking me. Should I set a boundary that he should contact me more than when he needs something or just accept this is what it is? Should I also change my thought from “he needs me when he wants something and that’s ok” to something different?
3. My older Sister- This is the hardest one and I’m having a hard time just loving and accepting her. Unlike the two above, I still get emotional when I think about it. She runs away when things get tough (unfortunately, something I’m working on too). I used to hike with her until she shut down, because the ‘concepts I was giving her were too hard’. She always wants to give me advice on how to change my life, but shuts down when I give her advice. So the last time I saw her, I told her giving advice was a two way street and if she was not willing to listen to my advice than she should not be giving me advice. She then said I was defensive, left my house and has not been in contact. Like my brother, it seems she only wants to be around me when she needs something. I am grateful that I’m in a position to help my siblings, but would love to have relationships that they want to just spend time with me and my family.
Are these boundary issues? Should I tell them I want to be in their lives during the good times and not just when they need something? Or should I just be ok with the way things are and grateful that I’m at a position to help them and have them when I have them? I’m also a recovering people pleaser and wondering if this is just me repeating old habits and eventually I will become resentful. I really want to say that this time is different because I’m not expecting anything from them or expecting them to be different. I know I would love more of a relationship, but I’m learning to just accept things as they are.
Any advice you have would be great.