Defeating creepy old man Bob

When I first started dancing, I'd get paired with these creepy old men who would violate my personal bubble and whisper in my ear. One in particular, we'll call him Bob, loved our dances (wonder why 😒) and I dreaded it.

Since I was new, I didn't know how much personal distance was normal or acceptable. So instead of tackling the issue, so I suffered through these dances until for next month I avoided all those creepy old men like the plague.

During this time, some healthy men showed me what normal space looks like. I didn't know how to ask for it, so they showed me how to use a strong body frame to protect myself and how to kindly but firmly push someone away.

And then one day, creepy Bob and I confidently accepted. I wordlessly set strong space boundaries, and I had fun! He had fun too! And he didn't try once to get too close, and I was so shocked.

That day, I learned that when I set healthy boundaries, even the unhealthy people in my life will respond in a healthier way.

I rarely dance with the formerly creepy old men, but when I do, it doesn't make me anxious anymore. Most of my time is spent dancing with the healthy partners who showed me good boundaries in the first place. As it should be.