Using writing, and meditation, and ice cream, and reading, and dreams,

and a whole lot of other tools to rediscover who I am,

after six years living with a man with OCPD.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Good Fences Make Good Neighbors

My new apartment has a tall, gated fence around the swimming pool - here in California, most of them do.

Theoretically, of course, parents and caregivers should always watch their children, but, in reality, people get distracted, and accidents happen.  And of course, people "should" control their dogs and not let them run loose onto their neighbor's property, and most of them do, but then there are the others...

I was thinking about this physical concept as it applies to psychological boundaries - something I've personally had problems building.  I've always worked very hard to keep my own dogs in the yard or on the leash, as it were, and not let them ravage other people's property.  To be respectful of the thoughts, feelings and independence of other people.

But not everybody trains their dogs.  Some people seem to be not-so-secretly proud of having huge, uncontrolled dogs leaping and running and taking a big stinky dump wherever they want to go.  Or little annoying barking dogs scampering around tearing up the flowerbeds.  "Isn't he a rascal?" they ask fondly.

I can keep on the way I have in the past - tackling it one dog at a time, asking nicely and reasonably,  begging others, "Please don't let your dog run onto my property, jump up on me and knock me down, or destroy the flowers I spent so much time cultivating."  Some people have been responsive, others... not so much.

And doing it one dog at a time is exhausting.  There will always be more neighbors, and more dogs.

So, I'm committed to fence building.  Though a few may slip in during the process, my plan is to eventually have a nice, tall, strong fence, where no outside dogs are allowed.  Until they're invited, and then they will be required to behave themselves, or leave.  And absolutely no more dumping on me!

I haven't quite figured out what to do about the cats...

Which of your boundaries get crossed?  And what can you put up in terms of an electric fence?  Leave a comment and let me know.