Yesterday we talked about the danger of flirting and how “just talking” is dangerous. Today I am going to share some of the communication boundaries that Shannon recommends
While many women flirt with men intentionally others don’t realize that their amorous comments are inappropriate. We hear this kind of language so often in the media that flirting can be a natural or automatic response. Some women are too naive to recognize the impact that their words and mannerisms have on the opposite sex. Other women are well aware, but are so hungry for affirmation that they continue to jeopardize their integrity in order to fish for compliments anyway.
Remember ladies, we will give an account for every word… we must always ask our self what is my motive in saying what I am saying… my real motive.
While kind words and compliments can be appropriate, we must be honest about our motives and recognize when they border on becoming manipulative or flirtatious. Even when we learn to discern whether we are flirting or not, there are other forms of communication that can also lead to sexual and emotional compromise.
We are going to look at some boundaries now. This first set of boundaries is huge!! If you don’t put any other boundary to action please put this one…
Complaining About The Complaining
Ladies, please do not complain about your husband to another man.
I won’t go so far as to say that women never have a right to complain about their husbands, but such behavior with someone of the opposite sex can backfire in a hurry.
Shannon shares about woman named Beth whose husband was emotionally and verbally abusive to her. he complained about everything she did and she was hurt by him. So she complained about him one day to a male co-worker… who also chose to complain about his complaining wife to her… this continued and developed into an affair. This complaining did neither one of them any good… and it did nothing to heal their marriage or bring them closer to their spouse.
In hindsight, Beth realizes that two wrongs certainly didn’t make a right. While her husband had no right to treat her so poorly, she only made the situation worse by complaining to another man about her husband.
If you are experienceing an issue in your marriage and you need to talk about it, this is where the godly female friendships are so very needed. You need godly friendships with women who will teach you how to love your husband. Who will help you get a right perspective on the situation instead of just looking at it through the eyes of your hurt and disappointment.
Older women likewise are to be reverent in their behavior,
not malicious gossips nor enslaved to much wine,
teaching what is good,
so that they may encourage the young women
to love their husbands, to love their children,
When Not To Help
Women can be far to nurturing in situations, even when red flags begin to surface we often think, But he needs me… I’m just trying to be a friend… How can I possibly not help? That would not be very Christlike!
I had a mentor warn me of this as she shared with me about ministering. She worked in the office at our church and a man came in needing financial help. As he shared his story, she was listening intently and with compassion, and he then did something that sent a red flag up in her spirit, she realized that he was being insincere and was trying to draw her into an uncomfortable situation and was taking advantage of her compassion and attention.
You need ladies like this in your life to teach these things to you… as women in our desire to help we can miss the red flags. (We will talk about this more next week as we discuss accountability partners)
Stick To Business At Hand
It has been said that men use conversation as a means of communicating information, but women use conversation as a means of bonding… And yes, the more we communicate with a person, the more we bond, so we would do well to take a lesson from the men in this area and learn to stick to business a little better. We can learn to communicate with men in friendly but to-the-point ways that will not jeopardize our emotional integrity.
Voice to voice:
*set a timer when communicating with a male co-worker or business venture… allot time for how much the business will take and the timer will go off to help you not move from business to personal conversation when the business talk is over
*use the speakerphone and pretend you are also on a speakerphone
*screen calls if you are receiving calls from a co-worker that is “pushing-it” or that you are tempted by and don’t answer until you are collected and able to stand
*avoid late night conversations with any male who is not your husband (whether single or married)
Face to face:
*when in a conversation alone with a person of the opposite sex that is not your spouse, stick to the business at hand. Keep you motives in check and guard the conversation. Make sure you don’t have a hidden agenda in the conversation. Do not use him as a sounding board and do not try and test his personal resolve, and do not use him to get your own ego stroked
*if a man tries to act flirtatious with you and draw you into a flirtatious conversation… find a distraction and get out of that conversation altogether, you can do this politely without causing any weirdness… and when you do not feed the conversation with flirting in return, the attempts at flirtatious conversations usually will stop coming from this person.
*when a male coworker or friend shows up unexpected and you are home alone have a go-to-girl, someone who you can call to “show up” as well, so that you will not be alone. If a friend is not available… keep the man out side the home if possible, and keep the conversation minimal and quick.
*at work, if in a meeting alone with someone with the opposite sex, keep the door propped open, one supervisor Shannon knows had a glass door installed in her office so that at all times someone could see what was going on so there would never be a question about what was going on behind closed doors… (is this a step you could take?)
*try never to be alone in the car with someone of the opposite sex… it might be better to turn down that business trip rather than put yourself in that position and jeopardize your marriage and integrity
*I realize that we all must email and receive emails from people of the opposite sex, but once again keep it quick and to the point and only business, as women we tend use to many words in the email… making it sometimes a little too personal…
*if a man from your past, a previous relationship, attempts to contact you… you do not have to respond, and if you do keep it short, and let them know not to contact you again, especially if you got “excited” when you saw the message
*avoid personal email accounts that your spouse doesn’t have a password too, you should be able to keep each other accountable, simply by knowing that your spouse could be logged on at any time.
*if a man tries to invade your personal space through instant messaging and chat… once again you do not have to respond. (I actually keep my facebook chat off… if it is important enough they will message me… but it’s too easy to just type “hi” and get sucked into a chat that you do not need to be in and another boundary my husband and I put in place is no “friending” of past relationships, leave the past in the past)
*this goes for texting as well. Keep it short and to the point. If it is someone you know is pushing the boundaries with you, the great thing about texting is that you don’t have to respond.
Okay so there were come some recommended boundaries… as you read did see any you had already implemented in your life and marriage? Did you see some that might be a good idea to implement from now on.
My husband and I have always used one big boundary. When we got married we put one big rule in place: “Don’t Put Yourself In The Situation”. This one rule has been a guard and a guide through our past almost thirteen years of marriage… and it works.
You can’t make a wrong choice and a false rumor cannot get started if you are not in the situation for it to happen.
Another gage I personally use is, “Is this something I would want my husband reading, seeing, saying, doing, with or about another woman?” If I would get ticked off or be hurt by this word or action in reverse then it means I don’t do it and I don’t say it.
Treat others the same way you want them to treat you.