Therapy 101: Boundaries Of Following Your Heart


When I was a kid, my mom told me that I should do whatever it would take to get what I wanted. “If you had to steal it, I would cover up for you. If you had to beat it out of someone, I would even help you,” she said.

I can only imagine how mind-boggled you may be right now upon reading that statement. The social worker who took me out of the trailer park where my mom and I lived was shocked when I told her about it. She uttered that no child should be exposed to such damning ideology because the kid might genuinely do as their parents said.

As you might have expected, my mother lived the thug life. That was the last time I saw her because she was charged with murder and possession of illegal drugs. The court sentenced her to 50 years in prison, which meant that she would most likely die there. 

Did I miss my mother? Perhaps some, but I was already in foster care, where life was already 11 times better than what my mother gave me at the trailer park. I was lucky to go to a foster family that genuinely cared for children like me.


The mom was so different from my mother – from her appearance to the way she spoke. She made me feel cherished in a way that my mother never could since she was always too busy snorting drugs or hanging out with the wrong kind of people.

I was the happiest kid when my foster family decided to file for my adoption after six months of having me. Alas, the social worker explained that it could be a long process because my mother was still alive, even if she was in jail. In response, I asked them to bring me to my mother to beg for her to let me be an official part of my new family.

I thought that mom would refuse or pick up a fight when we arrived. However, when she saw how I looked – saw how healthier I became when we parted ways – she decided to give me up before I could even ask.

What I Learned From That

My life story was not as unconventional as I imagined. Many kids went through similar or worse situations than I did before they got into foster care and were adopted by a loving family. As a part of the process, though, the government required me to get therapy to deal with all the changes in my life at present and make peace with my past.


During one of these sessions, I talked about my mother’s tips to me about getting what I wanted.

“Do you agree with her?” the therapist asked.

“I did when I was much younger,” I said honestly. “That was the norm in the trailer park where we lived. But once I met my new family, I understood that there were certain boundaries that you should never cross, no matter how much you want something.”

“Can you shed some light on those boundaries?”

Never Steal

My mother taught me that stealing was okay, especially if you were doing it to the rich people or anyone who deserved to have something taken away from them. As I grew up, though, I wondered who we were to decide who deserved punishment or not. I was not a god, and neither was my mother.

Never Take Advantage Of Anyone

My mother happened to be a con woman before she became a drug abuser and murderer. She would pose as someone else and trick people into giving her money, jewelry, etc. Once she got bored with the job, she would leave them, but not before emptying their wallets first.


I learned about such stories as my mother told me about them proudly. She called as parts of her glorious old days, and I used to be in awe of her because of them. Luckily, I eventually understood how twisted that was on so many levels.

Never Be The Cause Of Someone’s Hurt

Since my mother clearly had no qualms about disobeying the laws, she ended up hurting someone until it worsened to death. When I asked her why she did it, she said she got upset, turning the guy black and blue. “I did not expect him to die, but he did, so tough luck,” my mother uttered nonchalantly.

Final Thoughts

As you might have guessed, my mother followed her heart one too many times. That’s actually inadvisable because it most likely meant that primitive impulses governed you. It might have been okay eons ago, but it’s unacceptable now.

Whoever is reading this blog, please learn from my mother’s mistakes. I know I did, and it helped me become a better individual.