Their Stuff!

Today I had a reminder about personal boundaries, and being able to differentiate between my “stuff” and another person’s “stuff”. Thankfully, I was instantly able to do this, but it reminded me how letting other people’s “stuff” affect us can impact on our mood.

Someone – a person I’ve had limited interactions with, and those online – made a derogatory comment about me in a Facebook message. To be fair, he probably thought he was being funny, but I did NOT find it amusing.

In the past, I know I would have experienced his comment as a barb. Do you know the sort of thing I mean? A sharp, stinging, painful thing, which would have slid oh-so-easily past my defences and HURT! Perhaps it would look something like this:

OuchHowever, looking back on the event today, I can see that I most definitely experienced it like this:

Me Not Me


Beautiful, clear, pristine boundaries, with a delightful space between “Me” and “Not Me”. That other person? Their stuff isn’t my stuff. What’s more, I did so without having to think it through, or analyze the dynamics of what was going on.

So: a little “yay” moment for me today!

Are you able to deal well with other people’s stuff? I’d love to read your comments.



Filed under Living Well With Depression

9 responses to “Their Stuff!

  1. I’ve been struggling a lot with another person’s stuff lately. I keep reminding myself it’s their stuff, not mine, but I haven’t yet managed these clear boundaries. I’m so happy about your little victory today! xx


    • Thank you so much DBH! I think boundary stuff is hard for those of us who live with mental ‘quirks and frailties’. Not for everyone, but many of us. Thank you for your congratulations and I hope we can celebrate yours soon!


  2. rod

    I don’t believe I am good at it if their ‘stuff’ concerns me, so my preferred strategy – not thought out – is always to avoid. You did well.


    • Thanks, Rod. Yes, that’s my preferred option, too; I’m not proud of it, but there you have it. As it turned out, I replied with a civil message this morning, and received an inbox of nastiness in return. Had to return to breathing and shout out to some friends after that “delight”!


  3. That’s a tough one; it depends on the situation. What I’m especially good at is obliterating the other person in defense – if it’s words – and I have more guts these days to do so. I smash them to bits, then I’m good. So maybe not the best way, but it’s the Patti Way, sort of Detroitesque.


  4. Pingback: Dealing with Rumination | Living Well With Depression

  5. I don’t always deal with other people’s stuff but this quote seems to keep hanging around over the past couple of days “What other people think of me is none of my business”. I know it was said by a famous person but not sure which dead, famous person it was. 😉


    • I love it! And, you know what? Someone else said something wonderful to me in the last few days, another memorable quote along similar lines, and it was on the tip of my mind as I started typing this reply, but now it’s gone! *doh* It will come back.

      Liked by 1 person

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