Boundaries are important for everyone, even if the person is not in, or affected by, active addiction. We each like to have our personal space, whatever that may look like. Setting firm guidelines are especially needed for families and friends who are affected by addiction. This is also true for an individual trying to maintain sobriety. Relapses and setbacks during recovery can happen in part due to a lack of boundary setting?

What Is A Boundary?

Boundaries can be physical or emotional in nature. We set them to help keep ourselves safe and protected. That does not mean that every time we draw a line in the sand we are taking a positive step. While healthy boundaries will encourage feelings of security, support, and respect, unhealthy boundaries promote manipulation and control. Often, the not-so-healthy boundaries are utilized to keep others at bay or are too invasive towards others. One must note that boundaries occur on a spectrum; thus, much of what you may be doing could fall in various places between a rigid boundary, a healthy boundary, and a passive boundary.

Sometimes, it is difficult to identify whether we are setting a healthy boundary or not. This is especially true in situations where there is abuse or trauma. It is easy to fall into the trap of blaming ourselves for other’s behaviors and actions and allowing shame to overtake our decision-making process.

Constructing Boundaries That Aid in the Recovery Process

Here are some tips to aid us in deciding if we should set a boundary and how to go about doing so:

  • Investigate your reasoning for setting the boundary. Are you doing so to avoid triggers that could otherwise encourage you to relapse? Have you forgotten your own desires and emotions and began to neglect self-care due to focusing all your energy on your loved one’s addiction? If your response signifies a desire to make the change for yourself versus an attempt to control another person, a boundary could be beneficial.
  • Communicate what you need in a straight forward, honest, firm, and respectful manner. Do not engage in arguments or debates regarding the subject matter. Keep your answers short and to the point.
  • Utilize “I” statements (“I need, I want, I feel”). This lessens the chance that the person you are speaking to will become defensive.
  • Demonstrate that you mean what you say. Prove that you are sticking to your limits through your actions.
  • Utilize an outside support network to help you to keep strong.

Boundaries and Addiction

Boundaries show that we respect ourselves and our loved ones in the same manner that taking control of our addiction does. All of this is hard work and takes practice. Who better to aid in the teaching process than Discovery Place of Burns, Tennessee? Call us today at 1-800-725-0922 to take control of your addiction!

During your time with our alternative treatment program, you will be nestled along the beautiful countryside. Our trained professionals will introduce you to a 12-Step program. Our various programs strive to help you and your loved ones to see the joy of active recovery.


  • Discovery Place was the answer for my son. He did the 90 day and then the step down program and sober living. We give this organization 10 stars. They met my son where he was …emotionally, mentally, physically. They helped him put his life back on track. Discovery Place employees care about their guests. If your son, brother, nephew, grandson or husband needs excellent supportive care THIS is indeed the facility.

    Kim Morton
    Alumni Parent
  • I have remained sober and it is because of DP. DP is the best place there is, hands down. I keep everyone there in my prayers, and I encourage everyone there to take what they are practicing and do it in their lives, after.

    Roy Mantelli
  • Over the past year, I’ve been putting into actin what Discovery Place taught me, and I have experienced a complete perspective change of the world, and the people in it. I get to be a man of service and love today, and for that I am grateful to Discovery Place.

    Matt Kassay
  • Discovery Place means the world to me. They showed me the tools that I’ve tried to use everyday in my life to think less often of myself, and more frequently of others. I am learning to lend a hand when I am able and to have a honest and humble relationship with God and the people around me. Not only am I clean and sober, but also I am happy and fulfilled.

    Tommy Parker
  • Discovery Place and the men who work there made recovery attractive, and more importantly, fun. There is strength in the struggle. I am forever grateful for my time at Discovery Place.

    Creed McClellan
  • When I got to Discovery Place my whole life was in shambles, but I didn’t know it. I spent 6 months in their programs, participating in all three phases, and was met with kindness and love all along the way. It is unbelievable to me, where I am now relative to where I was when I arrived at DP.

    Lance Duke
  • I can never say enough good things about Discovery Place and the people who work there. Before checking in to DP, I was out of options and out of answers. Fortunately, Discovery Place has a solution. Taking suggestions from the staff at DP saved my life, and as a result, I’m now more content and hopeful about life. I’m grateful for Discovery Place showing me how to live a healthy life so that I can become a better man and help the next guy.”

    Tyler Buckingham

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