The Law of Exposure

Daring to set boundaries is about the courage to love ourselves, even when we risk disappointing others

Brene Brown

Yesterday I talked about the book Boundaries and the helpful concepts that Cloud and Townsend addressed in that classic book. One of those concepts comes from the “10 Laws of Boundaries” that they list in the book. That law is the “Law of Exposure”.

People may struggle with actually articulating their boundaries. There can be many reasons for this. Some of us grew up with the idea that we really did not have a right to let others know of our needs or desires. Some maybe assumed that others would dictate the rules in the relationship. Others may have felt that to articulate our needs and desires would turn people away from us, and that we would be rejected. There are many variations on this theme, and the reasons are not always clear and discrete. Often though, we may feel that setting a relational boundary will somehow result in a loss of that relationship.

The “Law of Exposure” is pretty straightforward. People cannot respect our boundaries if they do not know what they are. We owe it to others in our relational sphere to let them know what our needs and expectations are in a relationship. Others cannot read our minds, even though, at times, we may be unconsciously be expecting that from them.  

So, we have the right and the responsibility to let other people know what we need and want. That does not mean that others must fulfill those needs and wants. It is just an honest communication of our heart in the relationship.

Prayer: Lord, you have made us relational people. Help us to speak those truths about ourselves to others in a clear and loving way, Amen

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