There are seven layers to every relationship and depending which layer someone in a person’s life falls into- their behavior is affected towards them.
It is up to the individual to define their own boundaries to each layer with each person. We take a look into each one.
You– You lies in the centre of the circle. It is your mind and body which is unique to you because of your own individual experiences. No-one can see the true you and sometimes you struggle to as well. You have to accept that you will never understand yourself fully but you can try to learn what makes you tick even if you are just scratching the surface.
You will form connections with those closest to you and the people around you but you never merge with anyone else.
Lover– Your lover is the closest relationship you have with another person. You have to trust one another 100% because your innermost secrets are revealed to one another. You also share a sex life which is a deeper bond than any other you will experience. You commit exclusivity to one another- any breaking of this trust and bond is the most destructive thing you can do. Consequently, you must choose your lover wisely to avoid this from happening.
Partner– This could be a friend who has increased in status, a life partner or a business partner. They can be one and the same. It is very important to be clear about the boundaries you have in place in such a relationship.
Friend– A person with whom you have developed a level of trust with and support each other in ways that are mutually agreed upon. This type of relationship is one where personal information is shared, however they are not your crutch every time life gives you a hard time. You have to maintain a level of independence as a friend and not become a burden on each other.
Family– Family are blood relatives. People often believe that family are closer to you than your friends however every person has family members they never see or have never met or got to know. Family is not always associated with trust.
Family is a given, friends are chosen. In strong families the support and trust is there and always has been, however there is a chance that it may never be present if it wasn’t formed early on.
Acquaintance– Is a person you have come across in your day to day life and established a connection with. There is the potential for friendship however there should be no expectations at this point. You might see them socially however you are guarded about the information you share with them. You are aware of what might be passed on leaving you feeling vulnerable about topics of conversation. Once someone is classed as an acquaintance- they never revert to being a stranger even if you choose not to see them gain.
Strangers– Strangers are people you have never met, but know by name, have seen pictures of or someone who is a complete unknown to you. There is no expectation, however society dictates that you should be polite and courteous, talk for the sake of trade or talk with them in order to make their acquaintance.