The desire to connect and form an intimate bond with another person is natural, but so is the desire to protect yourself (both physically and emotionally). Psychologically speaking, both desires are equally important, and healthy people strike a balance between their need for connection and their need for protection. They walk the middle ground of allowing themselves to be vulnerable in ways that facilitate intimacy while simultaneously keeping their guard up in ways that prevent their being taken advantage of. In other words, they have good boundaries.
But how do you know if your boundaries are healthy and effective? How do you know if you’re putting yourself in jeopardy? And how do you know if you’re pushing away people who you should be trusting and connecting with?