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TOPICS
depression
panic attacks
anger management
addiction
dual diagnosis
grief & loss
codependency 1
codependency 2
childhood trauma
on being a therapist

RESOURCES
Johari window
my child within
reparent WC
shattered
serenity prayer
control/responsibility
empathy
taming the mind
mindfulness
stress management
spam of the mind
self-care
assertiveness
healthy boundaries
meditation
mistaken beliefs
Pollyanna thinking
basic human rights
helpful quotations
helpful books
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Carl Benedict offers online counseling on his web site Serenity Online Therapy.
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Basic Human Rights for Self-Development

Dysfunctional and abusive family structures fail to empower children to take charge of their lives as they become adults. Instead, children learn to devalue their feelings, needs and opinions. This disconnection from True Self can cause passivity and hopelessness in some, and  destructive or self-destructive acting out in others. Driven by forces they do not understand, these children eventually become lost adults - like ships without a compass.

I often give my clients a list of Basic Human Rights for Self-Development to which all persons are entitled. These are not political rights but human rights concerning autonomy, self-care, and relationships. Those raised in abusive or dysfunctional families may have a hard time convincing themselves they are, in fact, entitled to these rights. But they are - and so are you by your very birthright.

Basic Human Rights for Self-Development

  1. I have the right to have these Basic Human Rights and to stand up for them.
  2. I have the right to have my needs and feelings be as important as anyone else's.
  3. I have the right to experience and express my feelings, if I choose to do so, in a respectful way.
  4. I have the right to not be responsible for the feelings of another.
  5. I have the right to express my opinions, if I choose to do so, in a respectful way.
  6. I have the right to set my own priorities.
  7. I have the right to establish independence if I choose to.
  8. I have the right to decide how I spend my time.
  9. I  have the right to choose my own lifestyle so long as I do not violate the rights of others.
  10. I have the right to change my lifestyle, myself, my behaviors, my values, my life situation, and my mind.
  11. I have the right to make honest mistakes and to admit those mistakes without feeling humiliated.
  12. I have the right to self-fulfillment through my own talents and interests.
  13. I have the right to grow as a person and to accept new challenges.
  14. I have the right to choose with whom I spend my time and with whom I share my body.
  15. I have the right to be treated with dignity and respect in all my relationships.
  16. I have the right to be listened to respectfully.
  17. I have the right to ask for what I want assertively.
  18. I have the right to say "I don't understand" or "I don't know" without feeling or being humiliated.
  19. I have the right to say "No," and to set limits and boundaries without feeling guilty.
  20. I have the right to set limits on how I will be treated in relationships.
  21. I have the right to expect my boundaries to be respected.
  22. I have the right to walk away from toxic or abusive relationships.

I hope you will think deeply about these Basic Human Rights. How would your life be different if you lived according to them? Which ones would be hardest for you to apply? What does it mean that every person has these same rights? Think of people you know who seem to have their lives together. Do they live according to these rights?

If you think you need help establishing these basic human rights for yourself, then online counseling may be right for you. Click on the photo below to request help.


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Click here to request online therapy with Carl Benedict, LCPC, founder of Serenity Online Therapy.

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HomeMy Credentials / Counseling Philosophy / Online Therapy Risks & Benefits  / Services & Fees / ConfidentialityBegin Therapy /  In Crisis Now? / Testimonial / Contact Me / Sitemap

Carl Benedict is a member of the International Society for Mental Health Online, which has led the way in establishing online counseling standards.

Copyright 2005-2014 Serenity Online Therapy
Text and photos by Carl Benedict except where noted

"Our very life depends on everything recurring 'til we answer from within."  Robert Frost
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