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"I'm Not Sharing" Isn't Selfish

Have you ever sat down on the couch with your favorite snack ready to dive in and watch a movie or a show that you are super excited about and your child/ roommate/ partner, etc… sits down and starts eating the snack/asks to have some and asking what you’re watching and then complains about the snack and/or what you’re watching?

Well, I am here to tell you not wanting to share any part of that perfectly manicured self-care moment or any other experience you choose is NOT SELFISH!

I don’t know about you but I feel like there is little that is worse than someone complaining or judging what you enjoy or how you choose to take care of yourself! You are absolutely allowed to not share that snack with anyone and you are allowed to say 'if you don’t like what I’m watching don’t stick around' (or any other colorful phrase depending on the last time you self-cared). It doesn’t have to be mean but it does have to be firm.

Partnership and Parenthood

When you connect your life with someone else there is inherently a loss of some aloneness and autonomy to do things as you always have or would like to. Managing separateness in togetherness can be challenging. However, it doesn’t have to be awful or damaging or, worse, non-existent!

The key in these relationships is communication and boundaries. This could look like:

  • Locking the door when you want to have a relaxing bath alone.

  • Saying “Mommy is going to watch her show right now but you can sit with me if you like”

  • Getting the other person in your life their own treat so you can enjoy yours.

  • Scheduling alone time so your partner and/or child(ren) know you are doing your own thing.

  • Discussing when a good time to workout/ watch your show/ enjoy ice cream, etc… would be in the day-to-day schedule

It can be functional and easy if you are willing to be upfront and firm regarding your needs and what you need them to look like.

Social Media

In a world that says we need to share everything, it is ok to keep moments and/or special/private things or information to yourself. If you want to share, let it be your choice not because you feel like you are required to share based on some new-ish societal rule.

Social media is a curated reality not actual reality in its entirety. You get to choose what parts of your reality go up and which ones are especially for you.

Maintaining Your Autonomy

So, in a society that says you have to share everything and in relationships that meld togetherness and separateness as one, how do you maintain your autonomy and still experience connection and not create distance?

I’m glad you asked!

It does not have to be complicated.

Communicate and set boundaries.

Communicate and set boundaries.

Communicate and set boundaries.

Make yourself a priority and give yourself designated time to not share. Your needs for autonomy and independence are valid and deserve to be honored. But no one knows your needs better than you and they also cannot read your mind. So speak up! Be explicit in what you need. Make it clear how often you need it and what you need it to look like. Those that love and honor you will love and honor your needs.

So BEEEEEEE Selfish!! You officially have permission!

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