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Everyone is a Boundary Crosser

Creating the systems that sustain healthy, functioning communities

"Everyone has crossed someone's boundaries.

And everyone has had their boundaries crossed.

It's inevitable"

I was elated to get to participate on the panel at @Loosid Projects event this last Sunday, "Locker Room Talk: Confronting Sexual Assault in the Age of Trump," at the East Bay Community Space.

And the panel was only a piece of the amazing, dynamic consent information and performances that were shared that night.


I appreciated how Graham selectively chose the performers, panelists, and organizations in his event to represent different angles of consent, offering the audience a comprehensive pallet to choose what most deeply resonated with them.

So many important facets were touched upon that night, and one of the highlights for me was the interview of "the degenderates" by @Kitty Striker.

The both of them unveiled really important and detailed points around consent that are not shared often enough, and honestly require a deeper knowledge of consent to understand. I was very excited that they were speaking to them.

There was a particular degenderate that made a really amazing point:

**We are all boundary crossers. If we believe that we are never going to cross someone's boundaries, we're setting ourselves up for failure

... because we are all humans who make mistakes.

It's all about how we RESPOND to crossing someone's boundaries that makes the difference.**

I was so excited to hear them say this because this is a message I've been spreading for a while now-- that we all cross boundaries and what's important is how we respond when we do.

So here, I want to talk more about how we can respond in a good way.

Ideally if we cross someone's boundary, we acknowledge it, apologize for it, and respect it in the future.

Ideally if our boundary has been crossed, we simply communicate and ask the person to respect it, they do very adamantly, and we can move on.

Also, ideally, when we state our boundaries to someone they respect them without us having to tell them again or remind them. AND if we do have to tell them again, could we not assume that the person probably doesn't mean us harm?

Obviously this can all get very intricate, and be more or less serious depending on the boundary cross.

If someone continues to cross our boundaries after we've told them multiple times what they are, then more serious boundaries may need to be created, like permanent distance.

And what if we still took more pressure off crossing people's boundaries?

We can create social systems that support taking pressure off making mistakes, creating more easeful space for repair and re-connection.

After all-- it is connection that we all most want, right?

Connection to ourselves, each other, our families, our communities, and for most of us, the earth.

We can do this by simply accepting and embodying the concept that we will all make mistakes, cross boundaries and will continue to make mistakes and cross boundaries throughout our life, and by stopping judging, demonizing, and ostricizing other people for making mistakes and crossing boundaries.

Instead, seeing them as human beings, like us, that may just need some more guidance.

What if we understood that all of us make mistakes?

What if we took the pressure off mistake making, and instead focused on how to repair?

What if we saw those people as humans who simply have unmet needs and are going about them in a less ideal way?

And what if we celebrated our mistakes as learning experiences on how to do better in the future?

In this system, we still hold people strongly accountable for their actions and how they have affect others, and as someone who's crossed another's boundary, we still take the steps to alleviate what we stole from that person, AND we can also offer more invitation for REPAIR.

And also in this system, people who continue to cross boundaries, and any one who does cross a boundary needs to seek repair (or else it doesn't work).

It's NOT OKAY for people to continue to cross boundaries and not seek repair.

The key element to a system that can hold mistake making is REPAIR.

And just wanted to plant this seed for people.

~An invitation to embody ourselves as a whole beings, ones who cross boundaries, and ones who have their boundaries crossed, and therefore have a little more empathy for ourselves and other people, and focus a little more on repair rather than judgement.~


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