Saturday, 4 July 2015

Food for Thought: Self-Disclosure as a Boundary by Sarah Evans

How much information do you share with others? What boundaries do you set around self-disclosure? A couple of weeks ago I wrote an article about boundaries. There are many kinds of boundaries that get crossed,  especially when you have a disability. Nevertheless, we must be aware of what is appropriate and inappropriate and not be afraid to set boundaries for others; physical or otherwise.

To me, self-disclosure is about what you tell about yourself to whom. Sometimes it can be difficult to know who's safe to tell what to. Sometimes people tell too much information about themselves, such as their finances and their personal life, to people they don't really know that well (maybe acquaintances or people they meet and are talking to in a store).

Personally, sometimes I'm too trusting of people and I just want to be friendly. Unfortunately, I don't think there is a hard and fast rule about keeping yourself safe. I think that we gain wisdom by just going out there and having experiences and dealing with people. This is one of the reasons why it is important that we all, including people with disabilities, are part of our communities and have social opportunities. Loneliness and isolation sometimes makes us vulnerable. Even though it is sometimes difficult to get out and about, we need to look for opportunities to be around others; if for no other reason, to help us gain street smarts.

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