I love this analogy with the zoo. I have friends where we do this all the time with each other. It sets up clear expectations around time and somehow works... I do it like it's old habit, to manage myself and my time...Sounds like you did the in-the-moment exit strategy; might be better in general to set time limits way up-front, a la "hey, I've got an hour free, want to do x?" So you've already created limits around the interaction. Weird analogy but it's kind of like how zoos handle their large powerful mammals. From the inside out, theres (a) the actual wall or fence structure, but then (b) a trench or ditch surrounding that structure, that provides an extra protective measure, and finally (c) the barrier that the visitor interacts with. So, for a visitor to actually get to the fence, they have to get through the first barrier, then navigate the trench, and then they'll hit the wall, which they'll have to break through or climb over.
I've been thinking about the over-explaining of my boundaries too. It's not like the elephants need an explaination about the moat, it's just a moat.
Yep.Sounds like there's two things - the issue of multiple people pushing, in different environments; and then, this specific friend who cannot stop giving you advice. (Is that the same person as car guy?)
Am I reading those layers correctly?
Covid is hard. There is so much virtue signaling with masks and no masks. It's like people take it as such a statement of who people are as a person...
I'm not proud I got in over my head on a situation. I am pleased that once in it, I held my ground to do what I needed to reduce risk. I'm pleased that despite the heavy heavy exposure, my steps kept me safe and I didn't get sick. I think it stems from being abused when sick as a kid. It's hard to admit even fear about being sick again. I also don't want to be a burden on others.
Then 1 specific pushy friend? Sigh. Yeah, it's car guy. It's also currently can-not-contact-me-at-all guy because I couldn't hold to my moats. My limits of what having contact could look like, and it quickly went out of the bounds of what I could handle again.