Leading Authority in Treatment of Narcissism and Emotional Abuse


Interventions, Boundaries and Ultimatums

Dr. David Hawkins tackles the challenging question about when it’s time to get professional help AND how to get your mate to participate. He discusses the power of Interventions, Boundaries and Ultimatums.

Interventions, Boundaries, and Ultimatums: When It’s Time to Get Help in Your Relationship

In this particular video, the focus is on recognizing when it’s time to seek help in a relationship. Often, we resist reaching out for assistance and prefer to work through issues on our own. However, there are moments when love can hurt, and seeking help becomes necessary. This article aims to help you discern when that time has come. It will discuss the importance of a functional relationship, the power of denial, the fear of change, and the role of interventions, boundaries, and ultimatums in seeking the help needed.

Is Your Relationship Functional?

Just like a car needs to be functional to run properly, a relationship should be functional too. A functional relationship is one that has more good times than bad, more ups than downs, and more moments of intimacy than conflict. If your relationship experiences a growing distance, diminishing intimacy, and persistent conflicts, it’s time to consider what needs to change.

Overcoming Denial

Denial can be a significant obstacle to seeking help. It convinces us that everything is fine, and we don’t need assistance to work through our issues. However, it’s essential to be honest with ourselves. Are things genuinely okay, or is it time to overcome denial and reach out for help? Facing issues alone is not always possible, and that’s when seeking assistance becomes crucial.

Embracing Change

Change is scary and uncomfortable. Most of us prefer the familiar, even if it’s painful, over the uncertainty of change. But when a relationship becomes damaging, change is necessary. It involves letting go of the familiar and venturing into the unknown, which can be frightening. However, change can be a positive force in bringing about a healthier relationship.

Interventions: Disrupting the Status Quo

Interventions play a vital role in seeking help. It involves stopping all enabling behaviors that maintain the relationship’s current state. Identify the actions that perpetuate the negative patterns and put a halt to them. Additionally, create a crisis that serves as a catalyst for change. A crisis can open our hearts and minds to the possibility of transformation.

Setting Healthy Boundaries

Healthy boundaries are essential in any relationship. Communicate clearly what you can and cannot tolerate in the relationship. Boundaries teach others how to treat us, and setting them is a crucial step in seeking help. If certain treatment is unacceptable, express it honestly and firmly.

The Power of Ultimatums

While ultimatums might be uncomfortable, they are sometimes necessary to bring about change. An ultimatum is a statement of what must happen for the relationship to continue. It’s a declaration of your needs and boundaries, indicating that you are willing to take care of yourself and pursue a healthier path. Ultimatums can serve as a wake-up call for a partner who needs to engage in the process of seeking help.


Seeking help in a relationship can be challenging, but it is a necessary step towards building a healthier and more fulfilling partnership. Recognizing the signs of dysfunction, overcoming denial, embracing change, and implementing interventions, boundaries, and ultimatums are powerful tools in this journey. Remember, it’s okay to ask for help when love hurts, as it signifies your commitment to personal growth and the wellbeing of your relationship.

To learn how we can help, reach out to us at (206) 219-0145 or info@marriagerecoverycenter.com to speak with a Client Care Specialist

Also read: Truths About Narcissism and Emotional Abuse

About Dr. Hawkins:

The internet is inundated with hyperbole and misinformation about narcissism, leaving many people confused and hopeless. Get the facts on narcissism and emotional abuse from someone who has been researching, writing about and treating narcissism and emotional abuse for over a decade.

Dr. Hawkins is a best-selling author and clinical psychologist with over three decades of experience helping people break unhealthy patterns and build healthier relationships.

He is the founder and director of the Marriage Recovery Center and the Emotional Abuse Institute which offers education, training and counseling for people who want to break free of, and heal from, emotional abuse. Whether the perpetrator of the abuse is your spouse, partner, parent, boss, friend or family member, we offer practical advice for anyone trapped in a toxic, destructive relationship.

In addition to narcissism & emotional abuse, you’ll learn about the lesser known forms of abuse, including covert abuse, reactive abuse, spiritual abuse, secondary abuse, relationship trauma and much more.


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