Re: Diversity, Boundaries, and more self-design
From: Denise Meier and/or Michael Jacob (
Date: Sun, 21 Jul 1996 22:33:44 -0500
On Fri, 19 Jul 1996, Mark Ottenberg wrote:

> My personal therapy work lately has been focused on increasing my abilities
> to participate in social community by my strengthing (and sometimes
> creating) personal boundaries and semi-permeable screens.  With these tools,
> I am much more able to live in a diversely mixed and active environment and
> still respect others views without letting them unduely hurt me and without
> being corrupted by points of view that are not my own (or trying to force MY
> views into someone else's head).  Combined with an increased capability to
> truely LISTEN, community in a diverse sense becomes much more possible and
> enjoyable  for me and those around me.

There is something relating to this that occurred to me recently while
talking to a "new recruit" about the cohousing concept. I was talking
about the safety I expect to feel when my child goes to someone else's
house in the community, that I know she won't be allowed to plop down in
front of whatever happens to be on the TV; she won't be given sugary
snacks to the exclusion of healthy food; she's not going to find a loaded
gun left lying around; she won't see people hitting each other to resolve

Am I being overprotective? Limiting my daughter's exposure to diverse
lifestyles? Perhaps. But one of the things about cohousing that appeals to
me is that it is something of an extended family. While every family has
disagreements about lots of things, there does tend to be a set of
underlying values that one can count on. While I'm all for challenging
myself to accept that others can have different values than me and not be
"bad" people, there are still certain things I don't want to be challenged
to accept in my own extended home. 

Denise Meier
Sebastopol, California

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