Monday, October 20, 2008
Okay I just talked to Paule and told her all about everything and she was super helpful and reassuring and said that it is really hard but you just have to set up clear boundaries and the villagers are used to it and accept it when you say: this is my space, you don't come in it. She said a lot of the stuff from Midgley and Ettiene isn't meant in a creepy way, but if the villagers see a person who is open and comforting, they aim and fire for that comfort zone, wanting hugs and security all the time. So basically the next time I see Ettiene I need to firmly tell him that I need my personal space and we will have no more hugs and only handshakes. Paule said never to hug the villagers, especially the men, not because they might come on to you, but because it means you are an open target so to speak, and they will flock to you in droves seeking attention. So now I have this new perspective, you see. I understand how she and Nick and these other experienced house parents and co-workers interact with the villagers. It's not cold by any means, but there is a clearly defined line, and that in itself gives the villagers comfort. So I don't have to be rude or worry that I'm hurting anyone's feelings, I just have to be clear about my space and make decisions for myself about what I'm okay with and what I'm not. God this is complicated! But I feel better now. Time for sleep.