Setting Clear Emotional Boundaries When Dating

Posted by in communication skills in dating, first date success, love after 40, self-esteem in dating | 0 comments

emotional boundaries in datingThis post is brought to you by guest blogger, Sarah Fanning.

Setting clear emotional boundaries when dating is extremely important for your well-being and future happiness. Considering what you want from the relationship and what you expect from your future partner in terms of respect, honesty, trust or freedom can help you to keep your mind and body safe. All of this should be done before the first date so that you don’t become blinded by the new feelings. If you fear that you may begin to compromise, you can even write the ideas down to refer to later. Here are some ways that you can set clear emotional boundaries when dating.

Setting Emotional Boundaries When Dating

Think about how you expect to be treated and let your partner know. No one should tolerate abuse of any sort; cheating, and other extreme deal breakers like drug use, violence or extreme views.

Less extreme requirements are also important to express.

Maybe you prefer dating someone who has not yet had children or who wants to own a pet. You don’t have to settle for someone whose life has already taken him down a path you do not wish to go down. You also need to make sure the other person knows these things. It is not fair for them to walk into a relationship without all the information. This may not be a first date talk, but it should happen before anyone gets too emotionally invested.

Don’t share too much private personal information up front.

Don’t divulge everything about past relationships, fears, and downfalls. Open yourself up slowly so that there is room to grow and less guilt if you decide to walk away. If you do not open up about everything, your partner will probably follow suit but do it in a positive way, talk about things you do like and things you do want in your future; travel, children or running your own restaurant, whatever it is, share your ideas about your ideal life.

Emotional boundaries when dating are often tied to physical boundaries.

Abstaining from sex until it is the appropriate time can save you much heartache in the long run. While it is easy to say you will not engage in this type of behaviour, there are situations that may make it more difficult to abstain from sexual acts with your new partner before you’re ready. Avoid being alone together in the beginning; this is good just as a general rule for everyone’s personal safety. Start dating someone in public venues until you are sure you feel entirely safe. Have dates in public with time limits; lunch dates, sporting events. Never be picked up at home by a stranger. You need to build trust before letting someone know your home address.

Find out what your partner wants and needs.

You need to make sure you two are on the same page regarding the relationship so one doesn’t become more emotionally involved than the other. While you want to protect yourself, you don’t want to hurt anyone else either. Rushing into a relationship too early can lead to heartbreak because one of you wants to travel around the world or work in Dubai for 6 months and the other wants to settle down and start a family.

Setting emotional boundaries is a healthy way to approach any relationship, whether they be romantic, work or family related, or friendships. It is important to not settle for less than you deserve and enable yourself to have healthy relationships.

What boundaries do you set for relationships? When you have not set boundaries, what was the result? Please share your comments below.


Sarah Fanning currently works for the Lovestruck online dating service and firmly believes that everyone deserves to share their life with someone special. It’s important to prepare yourself for the dating scene and you might just meet the man of your dreams. To find out more on dating, click here for



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